Archive for the ‘assignment’ Category

Punch out 2.0

Have you ever wondered if you could beat up your friend in a real fight? Well thanks to googlefight, you can now have a battle on whose name has the most entries on Google. All you have to do is enter two different searches. These can be either names or inanimate objects. It doesn’t matter. Then there is a stick figure battle. After the battle, the results are displayed and the winner is announced. It is good for wasting 10 minutes if you are bored. Have fun and good luck in all your battles!

Battle of the Ah-lain-ah’s

Entry to the competition

For my last subject matter post I will revisit the battle royale theme that was started way back in October. This time there are only two contestants. They are Alana Garcia and Alayna Lim. When spoken they both sound like Ah-lain-ah but they are quite different. I will look at both subject matter posts and decide who is having the better December for blog dominance.

Alana

Alana Garcia blogged about Tiger Woods. The post was on a topic that didn’t really interest me because it was beaten to death over the whole week on radio, TV and in print. It was relevant to this weeks news cycle which earns one point for being current (tip #3). The writing was good but the link at the bottom was better. Having the link there was a good use of source material which gets two points (tip #10). The original reason why I was interested in reading this post was the title. Using cheatah instead of Tiger gets five points for originality and being catchy (using title effectively). Having a picture of Tiger/cheatah Woods under the title let the reader know who this post was about even if the name didn’t ring a bell. For the use of an image one extra point will be rewarded (tip #5).

Alayna

Alayna Lim wrote about copyright infringement in England. It is a topic that is getting more interest among people who make laws (apparently more so in the U.K.). The use of a skull-and-crossbones symbol at the bottom of the post was a great use of imagery and gets one point (tip #5). Underneath the image was a credit for where the photo was from. This gets four bonus points for not infringing on a copyright (tip #5). The red font stood out to me from the beginning. Everything else was black but the quote from the article was red; the color of pain and agony. Using a quote in the post nets three points (tip #4). The post was short and to the point. Two points are awarded for quickly relaying information (tip #8).

Showdown

It was a close battle and the score came down to a singly point. Both did an excellent subject matter post and should be applauded for their efforts…(short pause for applause break). Now to the scorecards. Alana scored nine points in the battle and had a decent shot of winning. However with ten points which was aided by a credited photo, Alayna wins the battle and gets the crown Top Ah-lain-ah of December!

What wiki and delicious think about organizational blogs

Wikipedia is not known for any how to’s but it does give user-generated facts. It discusses the history of blogging and goes into a little depth about the uses of organizational blogging. Delicious on the other hand has many tips for setting up a successful blog. I typed in Lifehacker blogs into the search box and it returned these results. I found a few good tips scrolling through the results. If anyone is doing a blog for their project I would highly suggest using delicious.

TBTL: the best thing on earth

As I said earlier this week in my podcasting lecture, TBTL is my favorite podcast. TBTL stands for Too Beautiful To Live. It used to be on radio from 7-10pm on 97.3. It got kicked off the air for low ratings. Now it can be heard Monday through Friday and high noon. It is supposed to be an hour-long podcast but most of them are longer than that. If you like people talking about their everyday lives and have a sense of humor, you will like this podcast. They are on iTunes under TBTL and they also have a website/blog that is still affiliated with KIRO. I was even mentioned on the Veteran’s Day podcast (11/11 easy to remember). So hopefully I have convinced you to listen to at least one episode. Click here to go to the TBTL blog.

Whatever you do, stop posting video comments!!!

So everyone by now should know that Kanye West dissed Taylor Swift at the VMA’s a few months ago. If you haven’t seen it yet you can watch it here. When I went to search for the video the next day I found 100’s of reactions to what happened. I just wanted to see the clip but instead clicked on a link to watch some 12 year old speak his mind on the issue. Stop posting video comments and labeling them like they were clips from what actually happened.

2,200 videos come up when Kanye West disses Taylor Swift is typed in the YouTube search box. Most of these are responses or reactions to the clip. Why do we all need to know how you feel about a cetain clip? I believe that we all have minds of our own and can have feelings without seeing someone elses. Blogs are a great way to do the same thing.

Most people think that user-generated content is a good thing. I agree with that statement. I like orignal YouTube videos where something is new and entertaining. Reaction videos are about the most pointless things on the web. 200 people think it was important to show the world how they feel about Adam Lambert losing on American Idol. It is easier to go away from YouTube to search for the clip on a blog or other news source. YouTube doesn’t help people sift through what is a comment and what is the real thing.

For all those people who are commenting about a situation, please post comment or response somewhere in the title. Here is a good example. Other people put a screenshot of the original clip so you will think it is the real thing. They also leave out comment or response in the title. This leads to people wasting time trying to find the original clip. There is a guy responding to the Kanye West debacle with 7,600,000 views. You would think that since the title is “KANYE WEST DISSES TAYLOR SWIFT AT VMA’S” that the clip would be shown at some point, but you would be wrong.

So to wrap up. If you have something to say about a certain situation, write a blog post about it. If you can’t do that then at least put response or comment somewhere in the title. That way people know what they are about to see. Too many people have been RickRoll’D. If you click on the link then you can join 26 million other people who have as well. The worst thing you can do is to lead people on.

Myspace vs. Facebook

We all know that these two are the social networking giants today but what one would you rather use? Personally I am partial to Facebook. It has a more mature feel to it even if it is less customizable. Myspace seemed like a good idea until users could add a million things on their profile pages. I don’t want to wait for two minutes while your pink flashing stars load. Here is CNET’s take on the situation. If you are too lazy to click on the link it is provided below. Enjoy.

Why are you always the same Mr. Blog?

Blogs have many uses. Some are informative, others are for laughs, and some just blow your mind. One could be all three of these things. People keep coming back to a blog for many reasons but one that is important is writing style. This is why I believe that blogs should generally be based on one idea. If you are stuck for an idea when starting out there is a huge list of them here.

Ideas like how to garden or bake cakes lets the reader know where they can come for information on that topic. People make mistakes by trying to do too many things at once. A blog about sports, calligraphy and underwater basket weaving would be ineffective. Daniel Scocco of DailyBlogTips prefers niche blogs over one with many topics. It is better if you focus your energy on one thing so you aren’t spreading your time and blog too thin.

Some may say why can’t I just have a blog with many topics like a newspaper? Well there are several things wrong with this. First, a newspaper employs many people. Sure they are a one-stop shop for various news but there are far more than one person running the thing. Second, if you choose to cover many topics, you will not be able to cover them at the same rate than if you focused on one. Lastly, when potential readers come to your site they are expecting something. What I mean is if you go to a candy store, you want candy not V8 juice or a steak. The same applies for blogs. People go to TMZ for gossip, ESPN for sports, and PeopleOfWalmart for crazy good times. They should go to your blog for information on a specific topic.

Writing about just one issue can also give you credibility after a while. People may see you as an expert in whatever field you are blogging about. Niche doesn’t have to automatically mean bad. ProBlogger suggests that many viewers are repeat visitors. Once someone has found a blog that they like, they will keep coming back for new information on the topic and may even tell their friends. Having a niche blog can separate it from the millions out there in the blogosphere.

In conclusion, I have told you that a blog should have a defined topic. It may be something that no one has written about. If that is the case then you can corner the market on that idea/issue/topic. Writing about many things is too time consuming. Your readers will appreciate the dedication it takes to keep the blog current. After a  while people may link to your site because you would be the known person in a particular area. Your blog can provide a familiar place for people to come back. This can result in repeat viewers and even some money if you have ads on your blog. So my challenge to you is pick a topic and run with it. I’ll see you down the road when we are both millionaires.