This week went well. Except for the fact I got another late start…but I got all my posts done. The most difficult part was that I wasn’t “ready” to make the leap in discussing more personal things, like my plans for the future, as I had planned to do in my project proposal. Eventually, I worked out the writers block and my posts did fit the plans that I made. I posted What Tumblr Taught Me About Weight Loss, Plans for The Future, Motivation, and My Mad Fat Diary. This was also the first week I got likes/reblogs on all of my posts. I will talk more about that in my final write-up. Overall, it was a decent week.
Firstly, I visited Tricia’s That Pinterests Me. I’m not going to lie, I enjoyed reading about her “fails” and the way she approached writing about them. The glitter fail is an example. I really like the premise of this whole blog. I float around pinterest sometimes and I seriously wonder if any of these projects actually work and this blog is showing me that they can, but usually you need to take safety precautions and make sure you get exactly the right materials. I sympathize with poor Tricia burning off her hair. I would have done exactly the same thing. That’s why I just don’t mess with fire! I thought her post about the crayon candle was the most impressive, because she relied on a picture for that project! There was no written directions. I thought she did a good job incorporating her own pictures into the post and describing what she did.
Secondly, I visited Whitney’s blog, The Gist. Ah, Whitney…your blog just makes me want to throw in the towel, delete my whole tumblr account, and go hide in the corner for the rest of the semester. Ha! In all seriousness, I’m glad that Whitney’s blog is working so well and that the bloggers are even noticing her posts and commenting on them (like Abby from Abby has Issues did on this post). My favorite aspect of Whitney’s work so far is that…she is analyzing how people keep up with the blogging lifestyle and how it has affected their lives. In a sense, it’s almost uncharted territory. We have all this new technology but we don’t really know how it means or how people strategically use their blogging to help advance their professional careers. A good example of Whitney’s take on this idea is her interview with Amy Purfield-Clark of Vintage Reflection. Overall, I think that Whitney’s project is living up to her project proposal and that it’s actually exceeding the expectations she set for herself.
Last, but not least, I took a look at Amber Gordon’s alternative fashion wiki. I was impressed. Wikis are, of course, written by several people which gives it that sort of…scholarly and removed tone. Amber was able to create all that by her own and I’m assuming it came off so well because she already had most of the knowledge to make this wiki. Here’s her main page on the Lolita style. Here, you can see how she gave a main description, but also linked to all of the other types of the Lolita style. Quite possibly the best part about her Wiki is that she is deeply invested in this topic already, so much so that she uses images of herself on the Wiki. She knows what she’s talking about, clearly. A good example is over on her Gothic Victorian page. The only room for improvement I can see is on the navigation bar. It can be hard to navigate from page to page because there is no links to the other pages on the navigation bar, so in other words, I had to go to the main page to navigate from Lolita style to the Gothic Victorian page. I think that she has followed her Project Proposal well. I also really enjoy that her wiki is something that she couldn’t find anywhere else in that format.
As for me, I had a little bit of tumblr trouble this week. I have two posts in the pipeline..that can’t be posted! I’ve been trying to post them since Friday, but I keep getting an error message. Hopefully it is fixed by tomorrow.
The posts I managed to get done: Celebrities Promoting Healthy Body Image, Why Do We Feel The Need To Label Our Eating Habits, and An Interview With Rayven Wold of Instagram. (I will add any additional posts here once the Tumblr issue is fixed). Update- It’s fixed! Added my two others posts for this week: A Rant and Freelee The Banana Girl.
Surprisingly, I thought this was my best week.
I had trouble getting started (I didn’t post until Thursday. Other homework got in the way). But I thought every post I did this week knocked the previous weeks out of the park. Why? Well…I feel like I tackled a lot of issues that I have been thinking about for a while. Those issues were kind of unpopular opinions, especially within the tumblr community that feeds off of buzz words and trends. The posts I ended up completing this week were Current Body Image Issues, Why I Kind of Hate The “Eat Clean” Movement, MIxed Messages Regarding Healthy Lifestyle Choices, Current Nutrition News, and Banana Ice Cream. What I’m most proud of is the research I put into this week. I tried my absolute best to find relevant links and to aggregate the links I was finding. Next week, I hope to improve on that even more.
And here’s my tumblr activity just cause it’s kind of interesting. I have noticed that people tend to get more followers by how many people they follow, so I will try to expand the number of people I follow this week.
- What did you do? (Descriptions – with links!)
Week 2 went pretty well over at my blog on Tumblr. Last week, I mentioned that I struggled with making my daily posts, but this week I fixed that because I decided to count calories so I actually posted my daily totals every day. (Here is an example). I think I also succeeded in regards to my weekly articles. I posted a workout playlist, The Stages of Healthy Eating/Weight Loss, Orthorexia, Foods I’ve Given Up/Foods I’ve Started Eating Again, and 70 Calorie Quinoa Cakes. I also gave myself a little about page.
- What went well?
I’m most proud of my post on Orthorexia. It wasn’t planned out, but I actually ran across the term and was intrigued by it. The thing about weight loss and healthy eating is that you can’t believe what the media and other people are telling you. This eating disorder of orthorexia is partially fueled by trends coming out about the “eat clean” movement. Here I was, mostly thinking that movements like that were pretty healthy, only to find out that they can actually harm people. I’m proud that I haven’t encouraged any of that sort of thing on my blog. I’m planning on exploring this topic and related topics this week again. Tumblr is kind of infamous for being the ground where a lot of people with eating disorders are free to promote that kind of lifestyle..and I kind of want to use the platform to go against the crowd a little bit and look at links and ideas that are not grounded in that or focused on buzz words.
- What gave you trouble? What did you do to address that trouble?
Finding a focus or a theme to my blog. My posts were all over the place. I posted my own recipes, about eating disorders, about food, about my story…etc. However, I think I did find a focus by the end of the week. I think I’m going to continue to delve a little bit deeper and try to write some about issues that aren’t being talked about enough within the community.
- What will you do next?
Strangely enough, I think the path that I’m being led on right now will set me up for Week 3, in which what I have planned out is pretty spot on to where I find myself at this point in time. This will be a good week.
- What did you learn? (This is optional. Address when you have something you want to keep in front of you.)
I learned that people on tumblr are too easily convinced by buzz words and I kind of want to combat that a little bit this week.
- What did you do? (Descriptions – with links!)
This week, I worked on my tumblr blog. I reblogged a lot of things and tried to become familiar with the tumblr community. I tried to post daily updates and I also posted several articles including Why You Should Think Before Counting Calories, Lana Del Rey and Body Image, Spinach and Artichoke Quinoa, Give Pilates a Chance, and Fitspiration.
- What went well?
I think that frequently visiting the blog and updating it on a day-to-day basis went pretty well. I am happy with the posts that I made and I think I learned how to use tumblr throughout this week.
- What gave you trouble? What did you do to address that trouble?
I had trouble doing the daily updates like I said I was going to do. Since I decided this weekend that I am going to count calories, I think I will post using that information to give me a starting point for my daily posts. This week, I am going to aggregate and collect links a little bit more too. I also said that I was going to “review” workouts, but since it was only my first week I found that I really didn’t have anything constructive to say. Hopefully this will change this following week.
- What will you do next?
I think I should have no problems following what I planned out for week two here. I will make the changes to address the problems stated above.
- What did you learn? (This is optional. Address when you have something you want to keep in front of you.)
For this post that I did, I really learned a lot about tumblr and the way it seeks to motivate people to live a healthy lifestyle. In horror, I looked at the things that I had reblogged and wrote about thus far, to make sure I wasn’t reblogging anything that could potentially be harmful or discouraging to myself and others. I was relieved when I scrolled through and didn’t see anything of the sort. I am definitely going to keep this in mind and will probably address it again within my blog.
Last week I was on a roll. The topics that we choose for our first experience with Wikis came easily to me. This week, however, I struggled quite a bit more.
For the most part, I couldn’t really find any place to add anything into. While reading the chapter, I became even more stumped. Eventually, I decided that I was intrigued by the role that Wikis/Internet play in modern day decision making. Then, I immediately created the page NoDecisions. I thought that once I picked a topic, it would be easier. Wrong. The topic, I felt, wasn’t that crazy of an idea. It made sense to me, at least. But when I went to google to try to find what other people were saying about the topic…I got a whole not of nothing. Ideally, I wanted to do what the assignment called for (which, like others, I felt was a bit vague). I wanted to find a million links, add them to the Wiki, and extend them into the page. But it just wasn’t happening. So I decided to look at it like…I was really doing what a lot of Wikis, like C2, try to do in that I was providing ideas about truly new topics and issues relevant to our technological society. So, I guess that realization was an accomplishment within itself.
I failed a little bit on the timing. I started on Thursday/Friday and visited every day following. I didn’t see a lot of activity on the Wiki until then, so I’m guessing a lot of my classmates faced the same issue. I updated NoDecisions everyday and also created the page for the already used Wiki word WhatTheHellWiki just for fun. And there were a lot of those “what the hell” moments this week. It kept telling me that I was updating when somebody else was, even on NoDecisions which nobody else ever edited. I also ran into the same Authentication Failed message as Jen. It happened pretty frequently and made me frustrated.
Overall, I think I did okay. I certainly put effort in, but it wasn’t as big of a success as the previous week. It was partly because of the weird topic I chose. The content that ended up on the Wiki was entirely my own and I had to really dig deep to produce what I did. Even my links I choose we weird. I even ended up linking to a wiki on consumer confusion, because it seemed more relevant in proving my point than anything else I was finding.
2/28: Created NoDecisions and began work based on a topic I found interesting, but only briefly discussed within the chapter.
3/1- Worked on NoDecisions and created a page for the wiki word WhatTheHellWiki just for fun.
3/2- Added more content and a link on NoDecisions.
Wikis are fun. I like how Professor Morgan pointed out, on Tuesday, that Wikis provide much more than just a simple definition of the word/topic. This week I used Wikis in order to provide a broad definition of the word, but I also threw out different ideas/links/things to consider when considering the word/topic of the Wiki page.
This week, my group and I choose to work on WikiLurker and OnFirstEnteringAPage. Firstly, I focused on WikiLurker. This WikiWord was used before, but there was zero content to be found. While in class, I discovered that googling “wiki lurker” basically resulted in zero results, except for A Guide to Conducting Online Research. While it didn’t really dictate what I put into the Wiki, it did solidify some of my thinking regarding the term WikiLurker. So what did I do next? Well, I did what I thought I was supposed to do, I simply jumped into editing the Wiki with whatever first came to mind. (Are we supposed to tell you step by step what we editied? I tend to edit, store, and then find random typos so it’s hard for me to exactly say what I did). Over the few days, that I worked on this Wiki, I wrote the basics of the first 8 bullet points. I commissioned my best friend who is an artist to draw the image for the WikiLurkers page (it took her all of five minutes). I did this because finding images without copyright/were 100% free for me to use was difficult, especially because of the topic itself. During the week, I added the links to the Wiki page on Wiki culture and the link to Neal Gaber’s essay on Wiki culture. That is when I began to realize that I was shifting into this idea of Wiki culture so I linked the WikiAsCulture page.
When I began working on WikiLurker, I decided that WikiTroll deserved its own page, so I went a head and created it. At the same time I asked my friend to create the image to WikiLurker, I asked her to create the image for WIkiTroll. I went a head and added that to the page, along with a brief paragraph about hows trolls are prominent to Wiki culture. Two days later, I was just clicking around on our class wiki and I discovered that there was a page called TrollsAreGoodForTheInternet. I added that link and did not consider that there might be a Wiki page called TrollsAreBadForTheInternet. Claire went ahead and added that link for me, and she also went off and created several offshoots of the WikiTroll page called HumorTrolls, GrieferTrolls, and ShockTrolls. I thought this was pretty cool. I noticed today that they were not linked on the main WikiTroll page so I went a head and linked those.
Finally, I worked on OnFirstEnteringAPage. I began work on this page a little bit later than I did with the other Wikis. I began work on 2/22. This page was already created and it had a lot of content, so I began looking at that content and I noticed some things that I could make better. The page itself was informal in its writing style, which was fine. Some of it just didn’t flow right though so I changed it. It used to look like this:
I’m here. Now what?
If you are new to the world of wikis. Take a breath; things are about to get a little weird (hopefully in a positive way).
Read the page to get a feel for what is happening here. It’s a draft. It’s a mess. Don’t be discouraged. YOU can bring order to it.
– Become a WikiParticipant, not just a WikiLurker.
Reorganize stuff on the page to bring the similarities and distinctions into focus. This is a good place to begin to see if you have an inherent structure so far.
Use what’s there as source material for ReFactoring. Quote that material worth quoting. Block quote using a tab. Summarize less notable stuff. Move other stuff below the double line.
And now it looks like this:
I’m here on a Wiki. Now what?
If you are new to the world of Wikis, then take a breath; things are about to get a little weird (hopefully in a positive way).
Firstly, read the Wiki page to get a feel for what is happening. Often, Wikis might look like a draft or a mess. Don’t be discouraged. YOU can bring order to it by becoming a WikiParticipant and not just a WikiLurker.
Secondly, find somewhere on the Wiki where you find yourself confused. Chances are if you are confused, then somebody else it too. Take away that confusion! Wikis are supposed to be informative, simple, and quickly read and digested. Try adding links or other information that backs up what the Wiki is stating. Reorganize the information on the page to bring the similarities, argument, or differing points into focus.
Use the content there as source material for ReFactoring. Quote that material worth quoting. Block quote using a tab. Summarize less notable stuff. Move other stuff below the double line.
I also added these two paragraphs:
Use the content already featured on the Wiki as source material for ReFactoring. Quote the material worth quoting. Block quote using a tab. Summarize less notable stuff. Move other stuff below the double line.
Add content to a page. What? Yes, YOU can add your thoughts into a Wiki and make millions of internet users see the evidence that your provide. You can write in response to the the current content or in response to another entry point, such as an external source. Add your own interpretation to the cluster and then look for commonalities and distinctions.
Take advantage of the resource we have gained by being students who grew up during this technological revolution. We inherently understand the collaboration, discussion, linking, and ever-changing cycle of the internet. Become a part of it. Wikis are one of the many ways that we can document this moment in time.
Strive to become a part of the Wiki community. The Wiki community thrives on newcomers, return users, and people dedicated to informing the masses about what they are passionate about.
I felt proud of the work I did this week. I was the first to contribute to WikiLurker and I created the page WikiTroll which lead to many more pages being created on the topic. I worked throughout the week and didn’t have to play catch up during the weekend. I didn’t like having to record everything that I edited (and I failed to do so), because sometimes the edits were minuscule or I was changing a little bit, clicking store, changing it back, etc. I also worked on OnFirstEnteringAPage. I thought I made the page a little bit more approachable and clear in its wording. I felt like the content I added was worthwhile. I didn’t really have trouble with anything this week. I edited the Wikis as the week progressed and was able to make my edits valuable. I really like working on Wikis. I like how they can be formal or informal and that collaboration clearly produces the best content.
So, this week’s assignment was much harder than I thought it was going to be. The reading was difficult and while I understand the basics of the purpose of Wikis, I am a newbie when it comes to the technicalities of it. I watched videos that explain Wikis, but I felt that I was lost in translation. In other words, when I thought that I understood something, I couldn’t see how it applied to the Wikis that I was exploring.
I found it really interesting to learn about how to interact with the Wikis that I regularly explore on my own time. I didn’t ever really understand how to edit Wikipedia and I appreciate it even more now, because it does really take a lot of work from people all over the world to build the vast amount of knowledge that Wikipedia has accumulated.
I hope to be able to explore Wikis more in terms of their use for education. I’m sure there have been cases where Wikis haven’t really worked well for a class because of the way it was set up, but if a teacher puts the time and effort into building a Wiki and teaching their students how to use it, it really can be a valuable tool.
What I really don’t understand is how…Wikis are marketed as being “easy”. They are as difficult as we make them out to be, but they are not really “easy”, which I think is evidenced by this week’s posts from my classmates. I don’t think any of us that are new to Wikis feel even close to comfortable with them, even after a few hours of research. I mentioned in my post that I thought the whole “camping trip” concept was a bit silly..and I don’t think that went over very well. I got what the point they were trying to make…but it seemed as though they were making Wikis more simple and mundane than they really are. Realistically, I don’t think people are going to start using Wikis for simple manners. They are going to be used for bigger scale projects that seek to collect and reflect on a lot of information.
Here’s what I learned about Wikis this week.
- So, basically Wikis are interactive and open websites that allow for continuous editing in order to gather information from multiple people. Obviously, the most famous Wiki is Wikipedia. Because of Wikipedia’s popularity, Wiki’s have gotten a bad reputation because it’s information may or may be valid and because “anyone can edit it”. Though, for some teachers, they are recognizing Wikipedia’s importance and accepting that student’s use it to begin their research. Even Wikipedia’s founder had to acknowledge Wikipedia’s validity within academic research. Comically, he said that he gets emails from students who got into trouble by citing incorrect information that they got from Wikipedia.
- Wikis are usually much simpler than Wikipedia. This common craft video shows how Wiki’s can be used for even things as simple as planning a camping trip. However, I do not understand the practicality of this. I consider myself to be a fairly tech savvy person, but I have no idea how to set up a new Wiki (even after reading this Ehow article). I don’t quite understand how setting up a Wiki would be easier than creating a group chat on Facebook, or creating an editable Google Docs file, or even *gasp* using Email.
- The formatting of more basic (i.e. regular Wikis) is confusing to me. We were supposed to take a look at Meatball Wiki and I have really no clue what kind of information that this Wiki is supposed to be giving me. Feel free to clue me in.
- I have always wondered how they keep all the spam off of Wikis, even Wikis as big as Wikipedia. I’m not sure what they do on smaller Wikis, besides edit/delete the spam out, but on Wikipedia they can lock certain Wiki pages that attract a lot of spam. Lana Del Rey’s Wiki page is locked. You can tell by looking at the lock directly above the main picture. When you click on the lock, you see this:
- Linking is the most important aspect of Wikis. When I go on a Wiki that I find interesting, I can go on a Wiki-binge by following link after link. I challenge you to go onto this list of list of lists on Wikipedia. You’ll see what I mean.
- Wikis can be useful in the classroom. This page shows many different ways that Wiki’s can be used in the elementary classroom, which I really found interesting. Specifically, a great idea that she has is using Wikis as a way to provide students with safe links for research and studying.
- Wikis are all about collaboration. Whether students are collaborating on a project, or scholars are collaborating on gathering information about a certain subject, Wikis are probably the best way for people to gather, collect, and reflect on information on the internet. While some knowledge and skill is used to navigate a Wiki, editing a Wiki is a fairly simple way for people to put input into an online project. They don’t need knowledge of HTML or any thing to in depth.
- Pages/information can be restored. By going on the “History” tab, people can revert back to the Wikis’ previous stages.
- If people are editing the same page at once, the person who hits save last will override the person who hit save first.
Overall, I think Wikis are all about the discovery of information. The internet is full of information, but the validity and usefulness of a lot of that information should be questioned. Wikis allow anybody to collaborate to gather and generate information based on a topic. They have an increasing value in education, as classes can collect information and work together in building resources for their subject.
Problems I have:
- How does a regular person set up a small Wiki for purposes like planning a camping trip?
- I need a tutorial for more basic Wikis, like Meatball Wiki.
So another week has gone by. I thoroughly enjoyed reading Chapter 3 of Rettberg to the extent that I wanted the chapter to be longer in order for her to expand on some ideas that were merely touched upon. There were a lot of topics in the chapter, but I didn’t struggle to find a topic that interested me. I chose to write about performance and internet fame. It was an interesting topic and I immediately recalled news articles and links that I wanted to include. I suppose, I was writing about a topic that I already knew a little about, but yet I really enjoyed expanding on my ideas and leaning/researching as I went along.
I am proud of the way that I organized the post. It took me a really long time to try to streamline what I really wanted to talk about and to somehow organize that information. In composing the post for our assignment, I had many drafts. My intention was to post throughout the week and update the post as I went along, but it didn’t work out because it took me a while to condense what I was trying to say. I think my post was a little bit different than that of my classmates. I used Rettberg as a stepping post for what I ultimately wrote about and I hope that’s okay. Honestly, It’s just kind of the way it worked out,
Next week, I’ll try to be a little bit more “technical” about the way I approach the assignment. Perhaps, I didn’t approach the topic in the right way, or maybe I did. I think I’ll follow a Whitney’s model a little bit. She really knocked it out of the park this week. I liked how she was able to organize her thoughts into three different informational posts.
Overall, I think I did good this week, despite my uncertainty about it all. I did work hard on my post and I think my biggest strength was searching and providing links to back up what I was talking about.