The Non-Shady Post About a Shady Blog.

This presentation is a quick introduction into “The Shade Room” blog. The blog offers readers quick insiders to the hottest celebrity news, fashion tips, and unraveling social issues. This blog unlike others such as “Entertainment tonight”, “Access Hollywood” , or even “TMZ” is designed in a way that specifically understands its audience and targets them in a way that has made the blog a huge success.

 

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What I Have Learned from Being a Tumblr Blogger.

Blogging has and always will be for me a way to express my opinions, feelings, and inner thoughts. I have found it to be both therapeutic and informing. I have grown as a person from the open environment of my Tumblr blog space. I have been able to see different perspectives, the rawest truths on high level issues, and the ability for human beings to sensitive and humane.

Before I dive deeper into this discussion let me begin buy offering a crash course in the world of Tumblr. Tumblr unlike other blogs is a platform for microblogging. Quotes are preferred to large blocks of text although they can still be found on those who chose to compose their individual blogs that way. While scrolling on your dash or main frame you are going to come across a multitude of things from cat memes to social issues. I have found Tumblr’s discourse community to have a multitude of smaller discourse communities called fathoms. These fathoms have different languages, known symbols, and leaders that have all been developed around a joint or popular interest. I have seen fathoms destroy other people who knew nothing of their lingo but I have also seen them protect their own as if they were brother and sister. The most important aspect of Tumblr I believe is that it is a platform that does not tolerate inequality. Lastly, it should be known that just as Vegas what happens on Tumblr stays on Tumblr. Your personal blog and what you reblog for many people in a way is private although it is for the entire community to see. When I first became involved with Tumblr I was timid about what I shared but after a while I came to understand the community and its open atmosphere I came to understand that even friends I followed on my blog did not judge me based on the content I shared.

To begin with, the first thing I learned from Tumblr is being truthful in all aspects of reporting. “The more informal personal nature of most blog writing is due to the fact that most blogs are by a single author. This places priority on voice” (Carroll, 178). Being your truest self on Tumblr is of the utmost important. Showcasing your interests and believes builds your credibility and following crowd. Just like any other blog it is important to always report the truth and be accountable for what you have written and published. I have seen many times Tumblr users speculate and have had other users do the work to correct their inaccuracies. Tumblr above all promotes the honesty is the policy slogan. As a member of the community we strive to help and maintain the betterment of our fellow bloggers.

The freedom of expression is another important aspect of Tumblr or any other blogging site I believe. “So subscribing to any code of ethics is voluntary. To maintain or preserve a writer’s freedom of expression, it would have to be so” (Carroll 185). ¬†What a person writes whether agreeable or not is not to be tampered with. If you have an opinion comment, or share, but do not for any reason flame a fellow blogger for their right to expression. Additionally, as mentioned within that quote for any new comer or outsider it should be understood that there is a code by which all users of said blogging community adheres to. As to avoid misinterpretations read further into the blog and the author to understand perspective.

Lastly, it is important to never change any ones work, remove identifying tags, or markings. People have spent time pouring in effort and heart into their work; presenting their voices in what they believe to be the best representation of themselves and ideas. Even authors should not change their work after it has been published, “So, after something has been posted, editing should be limited to fixing typos, smoothing out grammar, and modifying unfortunate word choices, but no more.” (Carroll, 189). Work published should have been revised before and ¬†what is said has been said. Bloggers must understand that if they do not want to misinterpreted that they have to be as clear and concise as possible in order to be understood properly.

Tumblr has taught me to also be truthful and represent myself in the best light as I see fit. My words, photos, and what I choose to post are a clear representation of my online identity. In order to be not only an abiding Tumblr user but an active blogger I must respect guidelines set by not only Tumblr but the general blogging community as a whole.

 

Response Blog #4 – Ethics for Bloggers

As a new blogger, I find blogging to be one of the best ways for self expression. Writing has always been my thing and as a shy child, it was my way of expressing my thoughts and the things I wanted to talk about.  At secondary school, my essays would often be displayed around the building and that was a confidence booster.  So I can see why so many people enjoy it. The idea that we can attract a community around us and singularly share our creative content has a powerful effect on bloggers.  But as with each technology, blogging has its affordances and constraints. With blogging sites being so easy to setup, it is important for each blogger to design their webpage with integrity and responsibility.

Although bloggers enjoy the fact that they can build relationships with their readers, which involves making it easy for them to connect and share information, I think what most people like is that sense of uncensored freedom that blogging affords.  However, it is that same uncensored freedom that Carroll warns against in Writing for Blogs (Carroll 184). Without a standardized code of ethics, the casual style of writing is often misused and misguided.  While it is true that not all bloggers are journalists, Carroll says that bloggers should seek truth and be honest, minimize harm, act independently and be accountable (Carroll 185).  I believe that responsible bloggers have an obligation to their readers to show that they can be trusted.  Depending on both content and context, the public have a right to reliable information.

I believe that the most important quality¬†of blogging is to be genuine and honest. ¬†But being honest isn’t always easy. ¬†Advertising is growing¬†vigorously and online media has given it that boost it needs to flourish. Bloggers are bombarded with offers of free products in exchange for them giving a review on their¬†webpage. ¬†How can viewers¬†be sure of the integrity of the blogger and the content? ¬†Bloggers have to be mindful of obligations¬†that could influence their content and exercise caution even if it means that they have to refuse products or services. ¬†It is far better not to align creator content with advertisements but if there is an agreement, then bloggers should¬†be prepared to offer full disclosure.

It is¬†a blogger’s duty to uphold the truth even if that means admitting a mistake. ¬†Carroll’s advice is that¬†if a correction is needed, the blogger should first of all, take responsibility for the error and correct the mistake immediately¬†(Carroll 188).¬†The best way for bloggers to guard against inaccuracies is to be clear between what¬†is an¬†opinion and what a¬†fact.

 

The Crisis of New Media Reporting.

In recent years ¬†there has been a move from print based journalism to digital journalism causing may characteristics of the art of ¬†journalism to change. As in many other technological advancements there is always a loss, in this case it seems as though we are fundamentally replacing traditional aspects such as, seeking the truth, reporting that truth by way of verification and diligence. Not to forget the¬†ethical and aesthetic responsibility to uphold. In this new era of everyone having the affordance to actively participate in news it becomes a constraint due to the fact that ‘citizen journalist’ create facts from fiction and spread it. These journalist do not do their due diligence and properly investigate but build a narrative built on pure speculation which I believe goes against everything journalism stands for.

In pure curiosity I did some research on¬†what are the guidelines or oaths journalist and reporters adhere to . To my surprise I came across¬†numerous websites that backs my initial thought that journalism has the duty to seek the truth by means of honesty and integrity. According to,¬†The Sedona Observer, a website that thoroughly explains the code of ethics of journalism, it states that ¬†“…journalism becomes a sacred trust in which the public accepts information as the truth and holds journalists responsible for upholding it.” Now with that said, I find it hard to believe that any of us who report on any media site takes into consideration the code of ethics that comes with reporting. I think the fact is many people only hold one obligation and that is to themselves. This media induced obligation that we must report our opinions, our feelings, our interpretation, and somewhere along the way we forgot that we actually have to report the truth.

In, “Photojournalism in the Age of New Media”, an article by Jared Keller, I came across an ¬†interesting sentence, it read, “while a single snapshot may tell a thousand-word story the trick is to get the story right.” Bloggers, tweeters, Facebookers, and all other social media users drag from what they see. They pull together stories and create a new meaning under false pretenses. Now, do not¬†get me wrong news being reported on a social media site is whats wrong but what comes as a result of it. People pick and choose on what to report, they misinterpret, and they make false allegations. Take for instance, the Reddit and the Boston Marathon bombing incident that was discussed in Brian Carroll’s, “Writing and Editing for Digital Media”. Sunil Tripathi was falsely identified as the Boston bomber after his image was placed alongside the actual bomber. The initial accusation on Reddit then spread to Twitter where the story transformed into a user claimed to have gotten the information from a police scanner. After which the tweet became viral. Tripathi was in fact not the bomber but had his character defamed due to hear say and the lack of verification of information and sources. People were so invested emotionally in the horror of the incident they forgot to investigate the truth from credible sources such as the Boston police.

Although, new media users have gotten a bad rep for performing acts of citizens journalism due to their messy and reprehensible acts of reporting sites such as Watchdog City, offers a platform which offers regular people who do feel the obligation to report on matters of injustice and social issues a platform to do so in a manner that does respect the dying guidelines of journalism. On Watchdog City, independent journalist register an account where they present their work to be evaluated by the sites credibility rating system and must follow a code of ethics as stated by the site. As so much damage has been done by reporting in a new media age a site such as this combines the new of the digital media and the old of the responsible to the public in a way that produces quality work based on diligence, credibility, and verification. We must remember that our words add to a global story and what we report is not just for our own personal debriefing but for the world to feed off of. It is our responsibility to report the truth even if we do not agree with it.