December 2012 Archives

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For those of you who haven't seen Shameless, it's... wonderful. Please do!! If you don't pay for showtime, you can watch online :0) Email me if you have questions!

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Just notice what the camera focuses on when it uses adjectives like "beautiful" (flat stomach) RIDICULOUS ... #MLFall2012


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Extra Credit Blog

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Andrejevic's article is a very interesting concept to think about. He talks about the technology we have today, the future, and how we it affects us as a society. One of the biggest technologies today is social media. Now it is nearly impossible to find a person who does not have some sort of social media. Facebook has over 1 billion members and its only growing. Also, an interesting point my dad talked to me about is that employers actually are more skeptical of potential employees if they do not have a Facebook because then they think that they are hiding something. The episode of How I Met Your Mother was a very good example of the problem with technology in our world today. Ted tried to stay away from using social media to get a better understanding about the person he was dating but in the end fell to the pressure. This is exactly how people are in real life now. As soon as a person meets a new person they immediately look them up on Facebook and can then see many of their likes, dislikes, photos, and etc. It will be interesting to see just how far social media goes, especially Facebook, and if it will be a larger or smaller part of peoples lives.

HIMYM & Andrejevi - Extra Credit Blog

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I was very pleased to have a screening of How I Met Your Mother in class. I just started watching this show a couple of weeks ago, so I am still trying to familiarize myself with the characters.

Andrejevic states how easily we are able to access information on the Internet, even about people. This is true, because after this, I found myself entering in names and you could easily find out information about someone's location, how many kids they have, or what school they went to, simply by typing in the first and last name on Google. It came up with websites just as "Family Tree" and "My Life." If you want to gain further information, all you had to do was pay a mere fee of about $9.99 or $19.99 depending on the website.

Relating Andrejevic's article to the How I Met Your Mother clip we watched in class, they are both very similar. Robin, very weary, was trying to find out about a girl's identity on the internet. However, at the end she found out she was actually a good person. This implied that Ted messed up the chance of dating a nice girl. This proves that looking up information about someone all the time isn't necessarily a good thing. It can lead to bad things. Unless you are definitely second questioning yourself, I wouldn't look up information about someone, or even go on a date with them.

Extra Credit Blog

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After discussing and going over the first half of the mystery vs history episode of How I Met Your Mother, I was really interested in finishing it. I was so interested in the episode because it made a very good point that now days we are so technologically dependent. I feel people these days are losing abilities that people had before all these new technologies came out. I feel that I have lost some abilities of mine because of this culture, I have become so adept to texting instead of calling someone or meeting face to face to discuss something. I don't feel I have lost the ability to converse but I do know some people who seem like they have. This has been because our technology has made everything so much easier for people instead of the old days where people had to work for it. I felt this episode really connected to the article for these reasons.

Extra Credit Blog on HIMYM and Andrejevic

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I found that this article had many points that made sense once I thought about them for a while, but the article itself was written in a way that was sort of confusing. After we had our class discussion and watched this clip from HIMYM, I really began to understand the full meaning of what Andrejevic was saying. This show is known for talking about real-life issues that happen in our current world. From the media, to relationships, and even just simple interactions, this show has got it covered. I personally have watched every episode of HIMYM, and have seen this particular episode several times, but I never analyzed it the way I did after reading this article. In the episode, Ted is trying to find his soulmate (nothing new), but this time he wanted to try something different. Instead of looking her up on the Internet, he wanted to try to relationship without social media/the web being involved. He ended up failing at this and losing the girl, but it is interesting to see that he really had trouble with this.
Andrejevic talks about the positive and negative sides of "iCulture" becoming so popular. He talks about a site where authors can contribute anonymously, but still get their work out there. To me that relates to how social networking works. Yes, a name is usually attached to someone's account, but the premise is mostly the same. Many people put up information that they would not necessarily share with people in real life - in a sense being anonymous. Rather than being totally anonymous, they are now allowing people to find many things about them- true or not true. Just like in the HIMYM episode, Barney and Robyn find out things about Ted's love interest that were definitely not true, which is why he took the plunge to look her up himself. While there is a lot of information that can be true, many things can get twisted, and I think it is important to try and retain as much privacy as possible. The Internet is a great place to share ideas and talk with other people, but privacy is a big issue. We also lose the sense of a good relationship because we rely on the Internet to give us our answers. Just like Ted did with his relationship, we can strike out too if we don't value face-to-face relationships and privacy.

HIMYM and Andrejevic

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Comparing the How I Met Your Mother episode "Mystery vs History" from Season 7 to Andrejevic's article on iCulture was very interesting. I love the show HIMYM and it was so funny because those characters are so distinct and Barney and Robin would definitely do that to Ted. In a world these days, all people do these days are really sit around with their smart phone. Just yesterday I actually went to a premiere screening of The Hobbit (which was great!)and they actually don't let you take your phones in the theatre by the order of Warner Brothers, and body scan you, it is intense... but while my friend and I were starting we were talking about the Tolkein books, and every time we didn't know something I would reach into my bag.. try want to google it, but before I grabbed my bag I remember I left my phone in my car.. haha so yeah, instead of just using a phone, for the original purpose of a phone to phone someone.. we use it for so many other things with its advanced technology, some for the better and some for the worse. With any form of connection, we can search for anything with our fingers and these capable phones. Robin and Barney demonstrate this through this episode.
As Andrejevic talks about how the freedom on the web is limitless is very true. People can put almost anything on the web, from false info to wayyyy exaggerated info. which is scary because now we don't know what to trust. Also if we ever meet someone new, my friends love to facebook search them, for almost any amount of information (single? mutual friends, interests? school?, city? and so much more that facebook frighteningly allows us to give out, and of course we cannot forget the public photos..) which is one of the reasons I don't have a fb. With many pros and cons of this advancing technological world, fb for me seemed to have way more cons. As the characters of HIMYM got smartphones their conversations at McLauren's just died down as they were preoccupied by them at the table. As Robin found out that girl's identity on the web but in the end she was actually a great girl, Ted messed up the chance of a relationship with a great girl. So even with these new advancements doesn't mean we should always use them. (such as the phone gps satellite tracking on phone spouses can use to find the spouse from Andrejevic's article). These kinds of things can lead to bad turn outs..

Extra credit blog entry- Andrejevic

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I was excited when we were going to tie in the Andrejevic reading to a clip from "How I Met Your Mother" because I just started watching this show about a month ago and I find it hilarious. I also really enjoy when teacher's are able to apply material to something that genuinely interests me in my personal life, it definitely makes me appreciate the article more. Anyways, I thought that the article had some really good points, specifically regarding the internet. I think that our generation has taken the whole using the internet thing a little too far and the limits in which we have for trusting things that we read on the internet are slightly out of control.

Andrejevic talks about how easily we are able to access information regarding many things on the world wide web, but specifically, and even more scary, how we are able to access information about people. Ultimately, you can discover anything you want about people in a matter of seconds on the internet, but to decide if it is reliable or not is up to you. The character in the show that we watched in class in faced with a similar situation and ultimately caves in an uses the internet to find out information about a girl.

This State Farm commercial reminded me of this situation so I thought it would be fun to post it, here it is!

Extra Credit Blog Brent Stensrude

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Extra Credit Blog

Andrejevic's writing address the technology that we have today, what we are developing, and how this affects us as people and as a country. He discusses the implications our technology addiction could potentially have and the downward spiral that this love for interactivity could lead us to. Technology interferes with the way people interact and well as some potential democracy. In the screening of how I met your mother, this same scenario was in a way played out. The character continuously needed to do "background checks" on all the potential people he was going to be dating. It showed how easy it is to get any one persons information simply by doing some research online. While this may have been a little over done, considering my personal skills anyway, it was not far from the truth. If you know what you are doing and where to look, you can pretty much track any one anytime and discover what they are doing, and what they have done. He was so addicted to doing background checks of people even when he promised not to he still ended up doing it to the woman he really wanted to meet. He ruined his chances with her thinking she had killed 3 husbands when in reality she was an amazing person. This shows how accurate Andrejevic is as he considers our addiction to technologies and surveillance of one another. I wonder if people actually do this before they go on dates with one another? I know it's possible to subscribe to websites that allow you to do background checks and receive information on people. It's kind of scary to know that something as simple as creating a Facebook or Twitter can lead to all or a large portion of your personal information being sold to or looked at by basically anyone, whether it's for demographic use or marketing operations.

Iculture Blog Brent Stensrude

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The author has described countless ways in which our technology has been increasing . From social networking, to secret GPS and camera tracking. Andrejevic, seems skeptical of many things that the government is doing and I thought it was interesting the way brought social networking and social inequality together? I saw something the other day that said, "If voting changed anything, they would make it illegal." This article reminds me of this. What is the author saying we should do to fix it? Is he worried about increased government control?

iCulture Blog and DQ

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As I read Three Dimensions of iCulture, by Mark Andrejevic, I was immediately able to relate. The nike iD part first caught my attention, because I considered getting them actually. For an price of about $100, I would be able to get my own customized shoes, but I realized it wasn't worth it. Just as much as it'll satisfy me with my own personalized shoe, I would also be helping Nike as a walking billboard. Wearing that shoe would show that someone actually did the Nike iD and how positive it turned out, also nike would soon learn that me as their consumer like these kinds of designs as their show, it gives them an easier job of seeing what the public likes. People often don't see that something may be for the benefit of the commercial. A smaller example I can relate to is that a lot of companies give out stuff at expo's and shows, (such as pens, water bottles, lanyards, flashlights and more) all free, yet with exception of their logo printed in big font of whatever that free thing was, also maybe a short conversation with that representative. As the form of interactivity grows in media through politics, culture and commerce, there may be benefits, yet more hazards. Tough we may think that these new inventions are beneficial, they are used in manipulative ways as well. Andrejevic gives the great example of the GPS systems on our phone where parents could track their children, yet if this is what the world has invented, what stronger and confidential things are they using without telling us. (Big Brother is watching us..) People could use this in criminal methods, such as to rob a house by tracking when someone leave, kidnapping somewhere when they are alone, people spying on others and more. Our interactivity with companies may be fun but they benefit from our time and fun. DQ- Are people aware of this trade off between interactive methods and the users?

Blog Post and DQ 12/5

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Mark Andrejevic's article Three Dimensions of iCulture was fun to read because it dealt with recent trends and issues involving the internet and how it's turning marketing on its head. The most intriguing part to me was when Andrejevic wrote about DJ Dangermouse's "The Grey Album" and the cease-and-desist order he received from EMI. Because of this cease-and-desist order, people rallied together to support the remixing artist and raised even more awareness about the album.

A while ago I read an article that referenced how different America and Japan are with their creative freedoms. The creator of a Japanese virtual pop star spoke at MIT about opening up the pop star to her highly creative fans. Fans made art, fan-fiction, music, lyrics, poems, games, etc. all based on this pop-star. "The idea was to compare that approach to the practices of a company like Disney, which would be more likely to sue anyone who attempted to create their own versions of a Disney property. "The students came up to me afterward and said, 'He really gets it. The future is about open source,'" an MIT professor said."(Wired) This article also spoke about how when the creator decided to let the public create their own image of the pop-star, her awareness increased drastically just from word-of-mouth.

So returning to Andrejevic's article, he makes a point of how everything created in America needs to be licensed or needs permission to be used for anything at all. Choosing to relieve these binds on creative fans could do wonders for a company. It would bring about a whole new type of interactive marketing. When a fan can shape a brand to match their own desires they are more likely to become loyal to the brand and, like Andrejevic stated, they will do the marketing and research for the brand.

My discussion question is this: Do you think there is a way that this sort of creative freedom could backfire with a brand? Can you think of any examples?
Can you think of any brands that could implement this idea and benefit from it?

Wired Article Source:

Blog and DQ 12/5

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In the reading titled "Three Dimensions of iCulture" written by Mark Andrejevic, he discusses the many different ways in which technology can be incorporated into our society today, and in many fascinating and innovative ways. I was fairly familiar with the product Nike iD created by, obviously, Nike, however, I didn't know/realize the many different benefits that they specifically reap from doing this. I found it to be quite fascinating that they are able to base so much research off of the specific design choices that people make when they are choosing to create a shoe on Nike iD. They are more or less able to run a free, constant, extremely accurate focus group. When they are able to see what is popular when kids, people, etc design their shoes, they are able think to themselves what colors would sell best in the shoes that they create to sell for real, and I just find this to be so brilliant. I also find it great because I can completely relate to this because I truly feel like when I am shopping sometimes that I think to myself, "I would buy this if it came in this color instead of this one!". It's so funny how the world works in that way. I am sure that there are plenty of companies that do similar things to this and I think that its brilliant.

DQ: Do you think that iCulture has truly made a large impact on the retail world? If you do, what do you think has had the largest impact? If not, how do you think that iCulture can help the retail world progress in the future?

Three Dimensions of iCulture Blog & DQs

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The Andrejevic article describes the modern ways which technology is used to connect people. The article argues that modern technology interferes with the ways people interact, for an example online shopping takes away the sales clerk/customer interaction when an item is bought in person. Another way technology takes away from human interaction is possibly of knowing where someone is or doing with out personal dialogue. Much the selling point of the the false advertisement example of the Forget-Me-Not Panties, we can now track and monitor where our family members or friends are just by using GPS signals via Foursquare or Facebook. & now all phones have built-in GPS devices which signal which is used to track the location of the phone. The joke behind Forget-Me-Not Panties is still an out there idea, but the tracking device which is the selling point of the fake ad is already accessible to the general public, whether they use it or not.

Andrejevic also argued that this advance in technology becomes a way we can become more personal. His example of NikeiD shows an away where technology provides a personal services that was never possible before, giving Nike customers the ultimate customer services by giving them everything they want. An additional example is also a public interactive billboard in Times Square. The last time I was in NY is this interactive billboard in Times Square which showed photo-booth pictures of their customers which were taken in their store and then instantly posted on the digital billboard. I thought this was a cool way for a retail store to draw in their customers and at the same time advertise their brand.

On a more serious note-- instant messages, pictures, and videos which are readily available to anyone made possible with the technology of a cell phone creates a lack of anonymity. As mentioned in class, anyone can share a message or photo publicly through social networks like twitter. The messages or pictures received often times can be taken out of context and their messages are easily misinterpreted, most often due to credibility of the source.

Taking a look at both the good and bad the personal and impersonal sides of technological one can only take away this, whether we want it or not we now have made it possible to have unlimited access to information, whether this information is pertinent to our daily lives remains debatable. But one thing's for sure, technology will never be able to replace human-to-human interaction-- Although some of us wish it would.

DQs: What will be new in which advertisers and media moguls will capitalize on the ability to instantly send messages out for the public to see & could this inundate us with too much unfiltered information?

Do you think that the idea behind customization remain, will this be the way of the future and could we be allowed to show our "true" personality through our clothing?

Blog and DQ for "Three Dimensions of iCulture"

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Anderjevic has written a really compelling article with "Three Dimensions of iCulture". He starts it out by talking about iCommerce at first then has three other sections titled iCulture, iMonitoring, and iPolitics. His main argument throughout the entire paper is that while the corporate giants try and make you believe you have the ability to use the interactivity like NikeID and other customizable applications on the internet yet they are actually just facilitating and "managing" the consumer in a top-down form. He does not believe that we actually have self-governance from the interactivity and inter-connectivity. This was very interesting to me for a number of reasons. I have always thought that the interactivity the Internet and new technology provides is giving us more control over what we do. Another thing that stuck with me is when Mark talks about how the corporate giants are foes of individuality. To me this was very confusing because now it seems like most companies are actually trying to market towards creating individuality. For example, the new Windows phone lets you customize your home screen but then again you can look at another phone, the iPhone, and see that maybe this is true considering every single iPhone basically has looked the same since it came out.

DQ: What do you think the future will bring us in terms of individuality available in the marketplace? Do you think it products will become more diverse or is it the opposite and they will continue to all be very similar?

12/3 Blog and Discussion Questions on Andrejevic

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In Mark Andrejevic's book entitled "Three Dimensions of iCulture", Andrejevic breaks down his book into four sections, iCommerce, iCulture, iMonitoring, and iPolitics. Andrejevic states that his "book argues that the deployment of the promise of interactivity in commercial and political contexts underwrites participation in top-down forms of management and control rather than in democratic self-governance." Andrejevic talks a lot about the interactivity and inter-connectivity that the internet brings. Andrejevic gives several examples of this interactivity ranging from Nike iD's customizable shoe marketing campaign to the viral email hoax of Forget-Me-Not-Panties to show the interactivity that the internet brings. Andrejevic talks about one side of the argument, that interactivity is beneficial for individuals because it allows a sort of self-governance and self-participation that was previously unseen in corporate and political giants since the days of local mom-and-pop shops. Andrejevic goes on to state that "the corporate giant, an erstwhile foe of individuality, is miraculously revealed to be, on the contrary, one of its greatest facilitators, thanks to the alchemy of interactivity," Anrejevic, does, however, disagree, with this, and instead believes that this new interactivity and self-governance accepts top-down forms of management, rather than giving people the reality of self-governance. Andrejevic argues that this acceptance causes a "rise of social inequality and the concentration of economic and political power in the United States." For Andrejevic, this self-governance and interactivity that is provided by the internet is undermined by the acceptance the top-down forms of management that goes along with the internet's interactivity.

Personally, I found Andrejevic's book to be very fascinating. I think that in order for us to decide if this interactivity should be utilized in lieu of the acceptance of top-down management, and encouragement of political monitoring of citizens, we have to ask ourselves how comfortable are we with the social inequality that this acceptance will bring about? It is obvious that social inequality will always exist. The question is, how comfortable are we with social inequality? I believe that the answer to this well help us to answer the question of whether or not the interactivity and perceived self-governance of the internet should be accepted when considered and combined with the acceptance of top-down management. So, how comfortable are we with social inequality? Is this something we should be concerned about, or is this just a consequence of living within society? If we aren't comfortable with our current social inequality as it stands within our culture, what can we do about? What should we do about it?

12/3 Blog & DQ

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I agree with Stephen's speech that there will be a future for newspapers, just like radio did not die out after television came into existence, therefore taking over radio's "reason for existence." Like radio, I think Stephen is right to say that newspapers will evolve into something else, so it won't disappear like the rumors just because of the internet. I also agree that with this increase of news and "noise" as Stephen calls it, it makes it harder to find good news. Can I really trust what I am reading? And because many of us do not have the time or rather may not know how to authenticate articles we read online, this is a big issue. Will this affect mainstream population at all? And if so, how?

He also mentions that the growing population of online newsreaders is growing at a rate much larger than the diminishing paper newsreaders. Most online counterparts of well-known, paid paper newspapers are currently free, but will this increasing online audience/readers eventually cause online news to somehow become a sort of paid subscription? As I mentioned above, Stephen mentions that along with the increased volume of readily available news there is a large percentage of faulty or false news. So he believes that newspapers will remain the main source of "authentic" news. This certainly foreshadows a possibility of some sort of online subscription newspaper to me. Seeing that most of us no longer pay for news, IF this does happen sometime in the future, would you be willing to pay for news?

12/3 Blog Post

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Both of the articles assigned spoke of the decreasing amount of newspapers and their subscribers due to new media. Paul Starr's article I found particularly interesting because it went more in depth and discussed multiple topics about this one subject. Starr's article brought up many points about why newspapers are going out of business and why it's a problem. The one that concerns me the most is that since there are multiple ways to get news now, not many people care about the authenticity of the source or the accurateness of the content. Those who post or share these inaccurate articles don't check to make sure that it is legitimate information. With newspapers, a credited reporter writes the stories and there are labeled columns if it is a news or opinion piece. On the Internet, it is easy for someone to pass off an opinion piece as news. Starr brings up the fact that it's also difficult to tell the difference between self-promotion and an actual satisfied review. One of the biggest problems with these situations is the fact that even though people have an endless amount of information on the Internet, they don't bother to check on the facts of an article or check to make sure a piece is legitimate and not satire. This results in many misinformed people, rumors, and false claims. This also results in shallow, less-informed news being absorbed because people don't bother to search for more information.

In addition, by making anyone a potential news-creator with blogs and twitter, individuals are gaining influential power because often times, their news is taken seriously. My discussion question is this: do you think people should delve more into researching a news topic when wanting to share it or do you think a 'news' article should be labeled by the accuracy of the content?

Blog Post: 12/3

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The topic of today's articles is the Newspaper as not only a news source but as a media source in general. Both articles focus on the declining rate of people purchasing and reading the newspaper, however, each author takes a different, opposing stance. Steven Johnson embraces the change- stating that it is somewhat of a natural progression and that there is simply better technology for reading the news. On the other hand, Paul Starr gives us the argument that this decline in newspaper sales and the use of them in general is really negative. Why? Because there is something to be said about tangible news that people get and read every day. But also because- he argues that with the decline in newspapers, there is also a decline in people reading and hearing about the news. I think, by this, that he means that people will/do care less about reading the news if they have to go online to do so. With people not caring about the news anymore, Starr argues that the government will be more likely to do sketchy things because they simply will not be called out on it. There will be much more corruption in the government if they believe that they are not being covered in the news. He goes further into his argument to talk about the economic struggles that will come with the extinction of the newspaper- including loss of jobs as well as a loss of the profits made from the business. As I read the articles, I was not sure what side I was on. On one hand, I fully agree with Johnson. To be entirely honest, I have never picked up an article simply to read the news for my own interests OR for enjoyment purposes. For that, people of this generation are totally used to going to online sources to read mostly entertainment but probably for news as well. At the same time, though, I couldn't care less about the news or stories that are in the newspaper or online (again, to be entirely honest) especially if it has to do with government and politics. So, I guess that would sort of prove Starr's argument. I do care a heck of a lot less now that the news as well as entertainment are not only available on the same sheet of paper. Therefore, I do not read them. Therefore, the government probably could get away with more sketchy things because I sure as heck am not paying any attention to what they're doing. I guess I would have to have somewhat of a happy medium. I do not think that the newspaper should be done away with and I think that kids and students should be encouraged to read the newspaper on their own as well as in and for school. But I do not think that it is a big enough issue as to where news and things should not be internet and electronic based or anything. Maybe there is another way to fuse the two and have a happy medium while still encouraging the public to read up on news and governmental affairs?

Discussion Question:

Do you think there is such a happy medium between internet news and entertainment and the newspaper? If so, what is your idea?

Who do you side with in the argument? Why?

Johnson Blog and DQ Post

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I liked both of these articles a lot, but I feel like Johnson's peaked my interest a bit more.

I really liked how he chose to look at how the change of news mediums came to be rather than just focusing on the future like is commonly done. I had never thought of how the new multi-mediated news could really affect how real-world events play out. For example, when he talked about his following of elections since 1992 and how many more mediums of news have become involved in helping people decide to vote, it made me think, how could this 2012 election have been different if we only relied on newspapers for our news? Obama's campaign was largely a grass-roots effort that relied heavily on twitter to spread his messages. I don't even know what a grass-roots effort would look like without facebook or twitter and just newspapers. Papers would only cover stories of volunteers, but not actually advocate. I am not saying that all of the new mediums of message-sending are better than newspapers, because I honestly think their use is a little excessive sometimes, but I am positive that this election would have had a completely different feel, following, and possibly a different outcome if the only form of news coverage was newspapers.

Q: What do you guys think about the proliferation of social media, online news sites, and blogs in things like politics or war coverage vs. old-school newspapers? Good or bad?

Q: Do you think the government should subsidize newspaper companies to keep them in business in order to keep quality, professional journalism alive instead of just relying on cheap news from couch-riders' finger tips?

This leads me to the next part of this article that I found very interesting and true. Because there is now so much news out there on the web available at all times, we need an intelligent institution to pick out the most important and quality news stories. Answer: NEWSPAPERS. So true. Boom. When I think about it, they do pick only the most pertinent stories and they report them well so we don't have to fish through all the junk on the web.

Q: Do you guys agree/disagree that newspapers now act as a guiding force to help us dig through online stories to reveal the most important ones? If not, what do you think the purpose of newspapers to day is? What will their future be?

Good night!

I found this article to be extremely relevant and interesting, especially considering my strong interest in Journalism as a career. Steven Johnson made several good points regarding the future of the media, and more specifically the news, all while using the past as a reference. Johnson's thoughts on the state of the newspaper industry was very interesting considering it's need to adapt to the vast changes required by the use of the internet and the way we view news today. I thought it was interesting that he thought the news is actually harder to navigate today than it was in the past when newspapers were the main source of information, referring to the internet as "more noise" that is harder to sort out. I have always viewed the internet as being both quick and convenient and easy to navigate. Do you agree with Johnson's reasoning for why the "new world" of news is far more complicated than it was in the past? Johnson even goes on to talk about the need to be a savvy researcher when navigating the internet and than goes on to pose the question of whether or not the general public uses the internet with the same skill and discretion. Do you think that most people are generally good researchers capable of sorting out bad and good news on the internet or do you think the clutter of information from both credible and unprofessional news sources are actually detrimental to society?

Starr/Johnson Post

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We've all been hearing about the decline of newspapers for a while. But they're still around. Sure, it took them a bit to adapt to the new age of technology, but they're catching up. They are aided by blogs, bloggers, writers, etc. People have way more options these days when it comes to reading the news. Don't like the way one site presents an issue? Check another site.

These articles reminded me of the ones we read about our attention span getting shorter. I side more with Starr on the issue of newspapers because it seems to me that he gets it. The world changes. Things have to change with it. The things that want to survive the change, such as newspapers, work hard to catch up. Besides, I think there might always be a few people who like things that are "old fashioned", like physically holding the thing you're reading and turning its pages with your own two hands.

People will also continue to be interested in the world. I saw a short comic today about being an average person and going through life in a really boring way. The man in the comic did nothing to stand out in any way. He lived a boring life and died without making an impression on anyone. I think most people are not ok with this kind of life. There will still be journalists who go out and dig and dig and dig for the information they want. They'll present it, and inspire the next generation to go out and do the same thing.

My question would have to be this: when are the newspapers going to be "caught up" with the rest of the world? What does "caught up" even mean?

Paul Starr's "Goodbye to the Age of the Newspapers (Hello to a New Era of Corruption)" asks the question of whether non-profit organizations can sustain newspapers that may be losing money. Starr takes three approaches in regards to this question. The first approach is the owners of some declining newspapers may try to convert the presses into non-profits in hope of raising contributions to keep them in operation. The second approach is a philanthropic support of specific kinds of journalism, available through multiple outlets, whether they are commercial or non-profit. The third approach is underwriting new models of journalism in the online environment.

Newspapers have been doing everything they can to survive. Even people have been expecting the successors of newspapers to emerge on the Web. Although readership is becoming concentrated in a national press, we still have to think of international, local, and regional newspapers. This article made me think of why I sometimes choose to read a paper newspaper, versus a newspaper online. One of the things I really like about newspapers being offered online is when stories have a little video explaining the story, or even audio (as stated in Starr's article). Being a visual learner, it truly does help me envision the story better.

Paul Starr closes his article with a very interesting statement, "Our new technologies do not retire our old responsibilities." What do you think he means by this? Do you believe we are truly avoiding a new era of corruption as Starr puts it, or not? Why or why not? Lastly, besides from philanthropies, can you think of any other ways newspapers might be saved now and/or in the long run?

Steve Johnson's "Old Growth Media and the Future of News" provides insightful information on why the ecosystem of technology news is so crucial. Johnson believes that the emerging news ecosystem is truly doing wonderful things. However, we can't expect the public to be in favor of such innovative technologies, when there is a plethora of individuals that still take pride in simply sitting down and reading the newspaper. Although, there is a lot of more noise now within the media, I feel as if people have the right to choose where to get their news from. For example, one may look in to the classified ad section of a newspaper for a job. Another individual may read The Minnesota Daily for strictly sports news. Another individual may read BBC News online ( for international news, especially if they have family elsewhere. Young adults, such as college students, may read Twitter for news. It honestly all varies and depends on the individual, and I believe every type of news outlet is just as important as the other.

Another important perspective Steve Johnson brings up about the ecosystem is how it will ultimately look like: News - Commentary - Curation - Distribution (starting with news, going up to distribution). This diagram was interesting to me because I do agree, that before news actually are made public, there is a lot of commentary from bloggers, and curation from social media. Personally, I do not think this is a bad thing, and as Johnson says, it is an improvement and it will eventually get better and better. I am thankful for how far the ecosystem of news and media itself has come today. Sure, I enjoy how rapidly and easily exposed I am to the news via the Internet, yet still value newspapers.

Coming from Steve Johnson's perspective, do you believe there is still room for newspapers today, in other words: Do you believe newspapers have a future? If so, for how much longer do you think they will be around? If not, why not?

Starr blog post + DQ

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Starr's article, Goodbye to the Age of Newspapers , discusses a topic that has been concerning to the newspaper industry for many years now. Being written 3 years ago, it is obvious that this topic is even more predominant today than it was back then due to the many changes in technology. People rely way more heavily on the internet to receive their information and updates (whether its via social networking or by looking up news on websites). Starr mentions that newspaper companies must seek out a new medium by posting online (and using advertising on these online posts) and I think this is something that is happening more and more. Especially with the use of Facebook, people are able to click on articles that they are interested in reading, and are taken to the site that wrote it.

I have never been a newspaper reader, but I find myself reading articles online frequently simply because a friend might post "Wow, great article" on a Tweet for example. I think newspaper companies should learn to feed off of this type of user experience because the most common demographic reading a physical paper daily is the older generation (who have grown up doing so and are less comfortable on the web.)

DQ: Do you think it would save more money completely to discontinue the product of newspapers all together? Or do you think this will eventually just happen on its own due to our generation's desire for reading online news?

Johnson and Starr blog and DQ

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Both of these articles were very simple in understanding their view on the issue. Johnson thought that the use of Internet and the diminishing use of newspapers was not a bad thing, it was just another growth in our "media ecosystem". Starr on the other hand, thought that it is going to be a problem for the way media and news is dispersed. They both brought up very interesting points from both sides, so it was helpful to be able to see from both angles. Starr thought that newspapers had been around a long time and because of it they really were the best place to for news to be spread. He thought they are the most professional news outlet and without them we would lose a very large portion of reliable media. I think the most interesting point from both articles was how Johnson classified how we use and generate our media over time. He called it an ecosystem. Some parts really strive and others change and evolve into something bigger and better, or lose value. To make it a point of not worrying about the media being lost all together, but rather how to evolve this new form of media to fit in with our culture is more important. While I do think it would be very weird not to have newspapers around anymore, I think there are some that can stay for the long haul. I also think that with the culture of this country thriving on the web, possibly transferring to digital media is not the worst thing. I think it is just the next step in a long chain of media changes.

Do you think the future of news and politics is a rocky one? If so, what should the newspaper industry do to stay relevant? What about magazines - do you think those will start to go directly to digital?

Johnson and Starr Blog and DQ

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These two articles are very relevant in my life today. As a college student in their twenties, I check Facebook and Twitter daily. These two sites, along with a few other news sites online or phone apps, have been my main source for local and global news. I have never been much of a news junkie. I have tried to read the paper several times and it just does not seem to interest me. My parents read the newspaper daily and it almost makes me feel guilty that I don't. Mostly what attracts me to news is the headlines. If that doesn't interest me, then I do not read the article. If anything, the way the internet has transformed the way news circulates has gotten me to read the news more than I ever used to.

In my opinion, the idea that newspapers are going out of print is not completely a bad thing. Although tradition journalism has more credibility in society, the news can be more more analytical and throughout on the internet because it is not limited to a thousand words. I prefer news from the internet because it is quick and to the point, which is how my generation was raised to take information because of all the technological changes. If I want a more in dept analysis on a news story or to compare different news sources, the internet allows me to do just that. Do you prefer reading news online or in a newspaper? Will newspapers ever completely go out of print?

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