Class notes 10/8



  • Check the schedule¬†to catch up on all previous work.
  • Comment on Blogs and¬†other content on our OL
  • Catch up on readings or get familiar with¬†future readings


How Social Media is Ruining Politics


  1. What restrictions or freedoms does it afford?
  2. Does it verify or confirm our existing viewpoints?
  3. What kind of democracy is being promoted?
  4. What is being gained / loss by these changes?


You end up gathering or flocking to people who are like you and share your views.

The message ends up lost and unclear on social media.

Social media has become more encompassing, taking over.

Regulates what we see as well as our responses.

Think of social media as a window, you can only see what’s outside the window. Meaning we only see what’s filtered through other¬† mediums.

These things are not helping us get more involved or informed on social issues or politics, it’s benefiting the companies and big name brands.

Communication becomes less meaningful and more superficial on social media.

Gaining, speed, updates and access to news

Loosing, quality, pernicious content

Social media places more information in peoples hands however they have to know how to use it, better yet WANT to use it and access vital information.

Peer Input;

“(Jodieann) Social media has the power to drastically change how we think, and it effects our individual self. Disrupting who we are as people.”

“(Mariah) Social experiment on asking people who the current political leaders are, and how shocking it was that many did not know. Going to show that we are not more informed because of social media.”

“(Pam) Quick news stories,¬†they come as us so fast they’re not as important as¬†they were in the past”

“(Ashey) DeBlasio (mayor) had a mainly social media campaign, grabbing team attention and new voters attention” >Fola (replied) admitted her voting for President Obama based on popularity and his image, not by doing political research.

Jones and Hafner- Chapters 8 and 10

Chapter 8-

(Page 117)Online Affinity space- discourse system, theres a way of going about operating in these communities. A starting place where people come together to build, interact or communicate to build relationships.

Cultures of use- conventions norms and values that grow up around a particular group of users. Each affinity space has its own set of them.The better you are at understanding these the better you will be at communicating.

Discourse system- using different tools, to get your message across. Communicating in a community. Ideaology, face systems, forms of discourse and socialization. For example don’t take things at face value, look further into them.

Face System- how people interact or get along with one another. Interpersonal connections.

Forms of discourse- How the communicate, online, in person ect

Socialization- how people learn to communicate within that discourse community. Online communities use the apprenticeship method, learn on the job. The relationship between the self and the community is important.

We often participate in multiple discourse communities, learning to adapt to each one. We also flock to ones we relate to or are interested in joining.

People try to learn the rules and gain skills in the forms of discourse to climb in within the group.

Media ideologies: With the shareability of online communities your messages can be spread or perceived in ways you didn’t intend. You cant look at just one medium, they effect each other. There’s no one way to use the tool. Each culture will have its own definition of what’s “socially acceptable”

With each downside or folly of one medium there  is advance in another. These networks cant stay the same, their use and communities evolve and change over time. Different networks lend their abilities to different professions and groups.

Informational vs relational: do you want to get information or spread your idea or voice. Meaning are you using a platform to get information or to spread it.

(Bottom of page 121) Approaching different platforms, everyone has a different view on how medias are used (twitter vs facebook) The media you chose to share your information will determine the audience it will reach and the response it will get. The idea against technological determinism, it will determine partial uses but it really depends on the community.

Online communications can sometimes amplify cultural divides or differences, what was once a small scale issue can now be shared globally. Discussions about traditions, culture practices and ideology can take center stage.

We reinforce our values and cultural norms online, however being online gives us the ability to share our views on other cultural norms, sometimes creating controversy sometimes creating smaller or sub groups of larger communities.


Prezi Presentations: Ashley and Mariah presented on 10/8 the rest of us will present on 10/13 (for more information on each presentation click the persons name!)

Fola РDiscussing Pintrest

Ashley – Discussing Instagram

The terms and service of instagram- many many communities on instagram but not all understand what happens to their media. You own your original content. When facebook bought IG there was great upset over the privacy practices. Device identifiers or cookies collect data connected to the operating system, meaning this is why you get “just for you ads” and things that seem oddly tailored to you. IG has access to any device you log onto, they may store it an share with third parties (apps or sites affiliated with IG legally)

Jodieann РDiscussing LinkedIn

Pamela РDiscussing Facebook

Mariah РDiscussing Tumblr

Fandoms- built around a general or shared interest, they create media posts based around that shared idea. Very vocal and interested in sharing the best of the fandom. Tumblr is a global platform. Tumblr doesn’t take your posts you own them. Tumblr tracks the popularity of fandoms, whats trending, whats coming up.

Samantha РDiscussing Twitter


Fortuitous: By luck or by chance

Tribalistic: A multi view point community

Pluralistic: One view point community

Kindred : Like minded people

Ideaology: The study of ideas

Cloistered: grouped together but separate

Pernicious: bad or harmful


Twitter: The power of a retweet


Twitter, launched on March 21, 2006,¬†is a popular social media platform which has millions of users world wide. Twitter is unique because posts are limited to 140 characters, meaning you have to say what you want to say and get to the point.Twitter is used by many organizations to reach their customers, fans or supporters and to gain new marketing strategies. A powerful aspect of twitter though is a users ability to retweet posts, meaning you can forward, share and comment on things ranging from political posts, breaking news, weather and things as simple as comedy. Retweeting is both a blessing and a curse because a positive message as well as a negative one can be spread relatively quickly. There is no stopping a post once it gets going, even if the original poster removes the content its been copied so many times getting it back is almost never an option. However all in all twitter has a positive reputation in the social media community and continues to build its brand. Retweeting or just tweeting in general is specific to Twitters brand and it’s how people distinguish where a personal social media content came from. Donald trump has a major following and his tweets both good and bad get dragged all over the Twitterverse sometimes within minutes, showing just how quickly a retweet can spread.

Prezi Summary

This presentation was the first time I had ever heard of prezi let alone used it. I have to admit it was a bit of a challenge because it proves to be much more complex than power point. In my first ten minutes I had circles flying all over my screen, talk about overwhelming. Once I got the hang of it though I organized my content in sequential order, starting at what I was going to be talking about and then the sub topic within it. I typed out all the content and then I fixed the sizing, font and spacing. Once I had all my content in those tricky little circles I played with moving them around the screen and seeing where they looked best but also made the most sense. My big blunder though came when I added the background after I placed the circles, meaning I had to totally redo it when I chose the background.. oops! After all was said and done though I thought prezi was kind of cool though I didn’t find it to be more professional than power point.


Response 6- Social Media

When we think of “culture” today we don’t always think of our ethnic backgrounds or upbringing we think of the fast moving tech savvy world in which we live. Social culture today is¬†predominantly online, our news, weather, banking and even most of our interactions with others are all via a screen of some sort. While in some aspects this is highly praised for its efficiency and speed others question its reliability. Even in the texts we read about Wikipedia one of the main detriments to the site was the fact that so many hands could alter a post making it hard to tell fact from fallacy.

Aside from online accuracy what else has a social media culture done to our values and basic language skills? In chapters 8 and 10 of the Jones and Hafner text they talk about the implications that social media has on our ability to properly communicate. I think about that as i type this and try and count how many times i have had to go back and fix a post on this site because i’ve typed it short hand or in “social media” language. Terms familiar on twitter, Facebook or instagram are not real world terms, they’re not accepted on a resume, in a business email or letter yet we continue to use and incorporate them into our everyday use, even speaking them aloud.

A great example of this is the example of the presidential race in the article “How Social Media is Ruining Politics”, where it states that candidates like Clinton and Bush are having trouble “fitting in”. Social media has become such a norm in our culture not having a large social media following as a public figure head actually works against you, you loose your touch with the world. Which is totally ironic because social media is virtual you can’t actually touch anything. For instance look at¬†Donald Trump’s Twitter Feed¬†and see just how many retweets and favorites he has, his following is huge even if he isn’t the most liked guy on the planet. The point is though he gets an edge for having a mass following, one he maybe didn’t earn but gets because his opponents are being in the times. Even decades ago in the Nixon/ Kennedy presidential race kennedy used the “modern” form of communication to win his election, his opponent Nixon was’t savvy on the new medium of communication thus costing him the race.

The language of the world may have its roots in the same places, may share similar meaning to words and symbols but being online changes all of that. There is a whole new frontier to language with social media and though it may not be wildly professional or grammatically correct it is common place on social networks, and to be successful on these apps to gain a following to reach the people and groups you’re targeting you have to know them because the inability to do so leaves you in the dust, obsolete.

Blog Presentation- HONY

Download (PPTX, 6.11MB)


In today’s world there are few things we don’t find online, news articles, weather forecasts and even banking. However with the influx of information available to us we don’t often get to see a human side to blogging. Humans of New York was created in 2010 and have grown into a global phenomenon garnishing millions of followers. The author has managed to incorporate current social happenings with a date, time and individual. The stories featured on the blog range from pulling at your heart strings to making you laugh but all the while giving a virtual voice to users who otherwise would go unnoticed.

Response 5- Blogging

“New communications rarely eliminate those that preceded them..” (Caroll, 17). Blogging is a fairly new form of communication that is a common and often very sought after source of information. There are various forms of blogs or purposes for them, diary style blogs that catalog a persons daily life or experience and ones that are opinionated or news oriented that cover a variety of views and issues. Blogs like¬†The Gothamist¬†,¬†Horacio Jones¬†and¬†Humans of New York¬†are examples of these. The Gothamist is news I often read it to catch up on local happenings and whats going on in the world. Horacio Jones is a personal blog where he shares his views and thoughts on love and life experiences. Humans of New York is my favorite of the three because his blog is photo oriented, he chronicles the life stories of the people he meets on the streets of NYC as well as people he meets on the trips he takes around the world. Three blogs, three purposes all with different words on the screen but written in similar fashion.

In chapter one of Caroll it goes into how to be effective in your writing, how to be aware of the audience you’re speaking to or how big that audience may be. The content also matters, siting never to be too general and make sure the content is well organized. I thought about how often i lose interest or close a site because its not well organized and too difficult to navigate. When we use a site as the book says we layer (Caroll, 100) meaning we scan scroll and surf to find the things we need, rarely do we sit and read the entire content to serve a purpose. Blogs are great sources of information because they’re like a house and the hyperlinks they can provide are like the rooms of a house (Caroll 117) and a great example of this is¬†Wikipedia¬†which uses the ability to hyperlink often. When i click on a wiki page i find sometimes dozens of links to other related sources and articles on the topic, the possibilities are seemingly endless when many sites use this ability creating a rabbit hole of information (Caroll 126).

When i read a blog any blog, no matter what its host is i wonder how accurate it is. In todays world media comes at us so fast its hard to sort fact from speculation or media bait. Even major broadcast stations like CBS have had their share of faux pas as noted on page 177 of Carolls chapter 7. The station failed to verify the documents they aired and it was a blogger named Buckhead that lit up the internet with replies. Users were able to verify and debunk the documents and add their input to the issue in a very rapid time frame. CBS later admitted they hadn’t done their homework. So is that blog one form of journalism hawking another or is that blogger just one person sharing their views. Where do we draw the lines, where does accountability begin and end. Noted in the text is the reality that a code of ethics doesn’t create or guarantee ethical behavior which is absolutely true. Too often we see doctors defrauding the health care system for payouts, lawyers stealing money from unknowing clients and investors embezzling money from their clients. In those professions a solid set of rules govern the practice and repercussions exist yet its still a problem.

So when we think about journalism, blogging, online interaction who’s to say whats right and wrong. What determines who a journalist is because in a way we are all authors online but the audience we reach varies greatly. A major corporation or organization publishing online would be scrutinized much harder than a college student writing an op-ed piece for their campus paper. I think when we’re writing in any forum we need to be mindful of who may see it, as Professor Belli said about our blogs and being mindful that the people we hyper link may be reading, when we tweet or share things theres no end to how far they’ll go. Think about the shared posts we see on Facebook and the trail they leave, millions of people see that. Blogs are a terrific new age medium in sharing, news, ideas, stories and concerns but i think the true verdict of what rules govern that is still out right now.

Response 4- Digital Journalism

When I think of journalism i imagine a newspaper, a magazine and a reporter scribbling away in their notebook. Growing up a journalist was a writer, someone who literally chased down the current events and was on scene. Today however with the addition of the word digital to the phrase it opens a whole new door.

I think about how many views of the news are available to us today and how easy they are to access. When the riots in Ferguson happened we not only had the main stream media view we had the views of people in the marches, watching from the sides. There was a Ustream page which was live broadcast of the events from the eyes of the rioters. That is an incredible example of digital journalism by someone who probably has no journalistic experience whatsoever. That ability however greatly reshapes the idea of news, of current events. Now when we want to know whats happening in the world we can do it by clicking a hashtag or a hyperlink we no longer need to turn on channel 2, 4 or 7. We know whats happening before the evening news is even aired. Its journalism in real time. Even though there may be more fact finding after the event happens we still have the run down and anything that comes after is trivial or opinion based.

The other way the news has changed is through the option of photo and video. We don’t have to read an entire page to know whats going on we can look at a series of pictures or even a video of the event to know. For example yesterday afternoon near the barclays center there was a brawl between rival groups of teens from various area high schools. An onlooker shot video of it and that video sums up the event more than any article ever could (check that out here:¬† ). Not only does that video tell us what happened it also becomes part of the police investigation, social media posts like that one can catalogue the tensions leading up that and paint an entire picture without a word being written.

Photo based journalism that tells a story through mainly pictures with minimal writing are also changing the journalism world. I think of the popular FB or IG page   ( ). This is a little different than reporting the news but its still telling life stories and points of view using photography. This is also what the 9-11 digital archive does, it tells so many stories through so many different photos and angles.

So yes the digital era has greatly altered the news and how we get it. We can log on Facebook and read 7 different posts about one event but i don’t think thats a bad thing at all. Thats 7 view points, 7 fact findings and 7 styles of writing to broaden our knowledge of a subject and in a diverse ever growing culture i think thats a great thing.

Response 3 – Wikipedia

Why is Wikipedia important? Or on the flip side why isn’t¬† it important?

When you thinking about the variety of search engines and their reputations wikipedia is the outcast, the black sheep. More often than not its information is discredited and held to a lower standard. Often times in our college career a professor warns against using wikipedia at all and if you do certainly not as the main or reputable source. But what is Wikipedia; a free online encyclopedia that anyone can edit as defined by Jim Giles.

When i think of wikipedia i think of an objective or less serious version of accredited sites because its known for being interactive. While i know some portions are verified and cannot be edited its rare i take all of the information i find there as valuable, ill often confirm it on another site. Giles notes in his article that discrepancies or ambiguities are hashed out among the users. This to me sounds like the information version of Facebook, where people are arguing over rid bits of information probably based on their own beliefs. Yet wikipedia has slightly more errors than the most sourced and credited encyclopedia in the game. Does this mean people are copy and pasting information from there, or are they paraphrasing sometimes inaccurately what they’ve read there. Is wikipedia the metaphorical thrift store of information on the web? It seems that way being that it is a less flashy and high end version of the real thing.

Why do we still use this source then when its clearly garnished a reputation for inaccuracy, I think because we know we can find its affirmation or antidote quickly on the web, its not the only source and we know it. With so many ways to gain information on the web diversity makes comparing and contrasting, expanding view points or understanding of things easier than ever. So say for instance you read some heavy article in a textbook and you have no idea what they’re saying, you pull up a wiki article and some other college kids has posted that same thing in laments terms and now you get it. So maybe its not the top dog in information but it does have certain benefits that its superiors don’t; you can interact with the information instead of having it thrown at you.

Blog 2- 9|11 Digital Archive

The 9|11 digital archive is a one of it’s kind view of the terror attacks that rocked New York and the rest of the nation. We got to see the events unfold through the eyes of the media but the media (as they do with everything else) shoots through a filtered lens. When i browsed the archive i focused mainly on the photography and portraits of the events. Being a lover of photography that strikes me the most.

This site is a more personal view of the events, instead of one generic press story it is a unique combination of photo’s and tangible artifacts from that fateful day. All of this data is a modern day scrap book, a way for my daughter and future grandkids to look back and learn about that day, a way to truly see how it effected people and changed the world. Piece by piece each picture, of first responders, employees in the towers, people passing through you can see the worry, exhaustion and sorrow in their eyes. Thats not all you saw though, you saw triumphs of human compassion, spirit, and love. This material is real, its not censored for CNN or FOX its the accounts from people who stood in the wake of the biggest devastation on american soil. When i look at these pictures some i remember from the media, from reading TIME magazine and some that my teachers and professors used in future years. I think in some respects this is a raw view that some people may find too painful to look at. I watched a portion of the names being read this morning and even 14 years later you can see the pain, the emptiness people still carry around.

Last summer i visited the 9|11 memorial with my daughter and best friend and it was probably one of the most serene places i’d ever visited. Even my daughter (who was four at the time) knew or sensed the ambiance of the memorial and didn’t once run, yell out or climb on anything. It is truly a gorgeous and beautifully made memorial to those who unknowingly went to work that day and never made it home.

14 years ago i was 11 years old, a 6th grader in math class when other students in my class suddenly started getting picked up one by one. The teacher looked worried and paced back and forth but never told us what had happened. When my mom finally came for me she too looked panicked and worried, it wasn’t until we were home that she sat me down and told me what went on but not to tell my siblings who were 5 and 7 at the time. I remember her calling my dad ever hour or so because he had a birds eye view of the towers from his job across the river in Brooklyn, sometimes she’d cover her face and go in the other room. She never let us watch more than 5 minutes of the news in the coming weeks and it wasn’t until i was a senior in high school that i fully realized why. Images, even some from the archive were so heartbreaking that she felt it would damage our innocence and unscarred view of the world. I do remember though how rapidly the world changed around me after that. A few months later we went to florida and i remember seeing men with rifles in the airport and having to take my shoes and sweatshirt off to go through security. I remember seeing the dogs and the army in the train station when i went to the city with my dad. At the time it made me feel safe, that nothing bad could happen if these guys were around right? Now as an adult with a child of my own i understand my moms reasoning even more and i also feel her fear for the world her kids were being raised in. Ava is 6 now and she’s been on countless trips, on numerous airplanes and i think about the fact that she doesn’t know or remember a time when security wasn’t such a huge issue, a time before everything we did was watched, she’ll never know that. I try not to think about the way the world is now or how it may get worse, i try not to let ava be subjected to the evils of the world we live in though i know one day she’ll look at things like the 9|11 digital archive and know that the world in which we live is a turbulent and scary place but also one filled with human triumph and understanding.

Mediation and Me

So while reading chapter one of the text as well as the articles I noticed one common theme. First and foremost the idea that technology is not just digital, it’s more the progression of ideas and tools over time. While the article and PDFs shared the same theme their delivery was really mundane and hard to relate to.

Chapter one : “Mediated me” was the most meaningful. On page 19 “..they allow us to do things in the physical world that we would not be able to do without them.” This made me think of how much technology we rely on just to function day to day. I think about the way I shop, bank, share or gather information. All of it is a result of some form of technology. I haven’t had to go to the bank to make a deposit in over a year I simply do it from my smart phone. When I want to pick up a prescription I scan it in and go get it. So much of our lives is simplified it makes me wonder if these things ceased to function what would happen. I remember a few years back I was filling out a deposit slip and realized I don’t know half the information required on it, its all done for me online.

In some ways you can say these things have become a crutch for us, a wall to hide behind, but in some ways its a bridge. While it may limit our functionality in some ways, like social skills or conversation, it bridges us to tools, people and cultures thousands of miles away. You can befriend people clear on the other side of the world, but if you met them face to face would you be able to dialogue with them? On page 21 a reference is made to “luking”. I think online communications have turned some people into real life lurkers who can’t hold conversations, while others have used it as a chance to flourish.

I think the way you’re mediated depends a lot on you. Some people can spend hours blogging and light up a room, others can do the same but are wall flowers. You can be well versed digitally an socially if you consciously balance it out. Lastly i wholly agree with the section titled “thinking”. It has in a sense reprogrammed us, think about when the bill comes at dinner when you figure out who owes what nobody picks up a pen but everyone will whip out their phones. Think about being on vacations and site seeing, its no longer “wait till i tell people its wait till i upload this!

Technology has dramatically changed who we as humans are, both positive and negative but the ultimate effect it holds on your life relies on your balance on and off the screen.