I’m super excited, and yet really worried by the prospect of the IOT (prospect? It’s already happened!)  The way Bleecker describes it – soon enough my house and all the objects within it are going to be having their own ‘conversations’ 

 **Post-apocalyptic thoughts  of robot rampages and solar storms go here**

 Whenever someone brings up robots and the like I can’t help but fear for our future. The chance for misconduct and hacking seems too high for my liking – especially when my livelihood would be at risk. But I can see the fun in the little things – I mean I’m already a Nike + Fanatic! It would be pretty awesome to be greeted at the door with a cup of coffee and the bath already run…yeah. 

 The argument going around these blog parts is whether or not this technology will make us lazier or more productive? And I really can’t decide. Perhaps lazier on the account of house duties and cleaning, but what about on keeping up with face-to-face contact when I have my house and coffee pot to hang out with?

 The whole prospect seems so far away, and yet I can see parts of it already starting to creep into my daily life. What a wonderful topic to end with!  Now I’m going to go to bed and sleep off my migraine (apologies If I’ve made a lot of grammatical errors)

 Thank you to Ted! Who has both instilled fear into me (Wk 5 – liquid labour fun times) and now uplifted my hopes for an awesome bright techy future.

 
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‘The Walled Garden’:  another term that has been thrown around a lot during my communications degree.  It’s not that I’m tired of hearing the debate, I’m always up to educate myself on why I’m such a horrible person for being a ‘Macfag’ (Yeah I own an Ipod classic (6 years going strong!) a Macbook pro and both a iphone/nano that have both died on me twice)

And yeah the battery life sucks, and Apple is probably the devil. I guess I’ve sold my soul though – because I haven’t come across a brand that has managed to make my mum not scared to use a computer – and that in itself gives Apple A gold star for me.

I guess the problem is that because I already owned my macbook (and I’m sorry but I’ve had so many problems with pc’s in the past that there is NO WAY I’m going back)  3 years with my baby and I’ve had no issues…so much so that my anti-mac dad has now bought himself one and convinced my no longer computer-iliterate granddad to buy one) and maybe that’s the problem others have – they’re so easy. You can’t play with the settings. But that’s not why i bought a Mac, I bought it so i could run all the programs I needed for uni (digc lab runs apple??!)

I get where you’re all coming from: it’s anti internet, you can’t make apps, you cant customize the settings…if I wanted to do that I would buy an android. But for now I’ll just stick with my iphone – it syncs all my calandars/reminders/contacts/pictures from my computer without even clicking anything – that’s one pretty garden. I’m happy with the view.

I’m not sure about you guys but the ‘Arab spring’ has become an integral part of my communications degree. It’s thrown around a lot, discussed often as the revolution of gen y. It also just happens to be the topic that my group chose to do our research report on, so I’m just going to expand on my points I made in my part of the speech (also sorry to all of those who had to listen to sick me talk for 5 minutes. It’s really hard to talk when you can’t breathe  properly 😉

Social media was used during the arab spring as the vehicle for change, but it wasn’t the change itself. Without facebook/twitter the revolution would not have stood a chance it was online that wars were fought as they were simultaneously fought in the street. The network became a valuable source for not only information on what was going on, but with resources on how to protect oneself from tear gas and the like during a protest. 

I’m not trying to underplay the role of social media in these protests, but they weren’t the end point. The reason the Arab Spring was so successful is because they had the people power behind the cause to get the ball rolling and keep it that way.

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Props if you catch the movie reference!

This week was by far my favourite week in the entirety of the DIGC202 course. So of course it must come as a surprise that I’m only now typing up my thoughts. To be fair – I had already written out the following in my book…and had intended to upload it Sunday night and then the break happened and then I got super lazy. Apologies and excuses behind let’s get stuck into it.

So far in the Digc202 program this is the topic that really stuck with me, I don’t know if it’s that whole 90’s era ‘Hackers’ thing I just really love that world. It’s so Steig Larrson! I really didn’t know what I wanted to discuss – I’ve followed the Julian Assange saga from the beginning (or so I like to think) I remember being young and downloading the first lot of Iraq war files – I’m not sure what I was looking for, maybe something to justify my disgust for the American Army. I trawled through files with code names and numbers that made little to no sense until the early morning.

And that’s just it – Wikileaks has no overbearing opinion through the text – there it is make what of it that you will. Assange wrote in his interview that

“Wikileaks is free to offer it’s analysis no matter how speculative”

Wikileaks could supply their argument because they’re supplying all the information, but really it’s up to the individual to read it all and come up with their own ideas. And really WIkileaks as an organisation isn’t that bad – they don’t make any profit from uploading this information and take the time to try and protect those whom may find themselves in a tough position after information is released (like the case of the families of the civilians/reuters reporters shot by the American Apache)

I kind of like Wikileaks, I’m not sure how I feel about that.

This week touched upon a subject that I grow increasingly interested in. The face of the media – what forms its taking. How it’s morphing. Traditional media and it’s watchdogs are being replaced by the average man or women stumbling upon something interesting and spreading the news. Previously media went for a ‘one size fits most’ approach to coverage. The New York times motto so very well desciribes this traditional thought of thinking.  – So often were the people formally known as the audience forced to read/watch/listen to what large corporations deemed as important. Citizen journalism allows the mass population to go looking for what interests them – and often turn out to be the main source of information and news for these large corporations. 

The shift to citizen journalism has not come without it’s scrutiny though, it’s argued that because of this ease of access and just how easy it is to become your own journalist, the rambles of too many are flooding the internet with no real point and devoid of actual sources. Kinda makes the internet sound like a 16 year olds first heartbreak blog…or at least that’s what I’m picturing. 

So what do you think? I’m quite positive towards this change – being in the age group I am the decline in traditional media hasn’t really made a large impact on my life. And I have to argue with the point that citizen journalism is flooding the internet. Sure it can make problems when trawling through pages of trash looking for a gem on an obscure subject but generally it doesn’t pose a problem to the average reader. Find a dedicated site on the subject you love and stick to it and it’s sources. Crisis solved! 

And now that I’m finished with that I feel the need to make a point on ‘ambient awareness’ that came up in the Time article we were prescribed this week. He talks about how following your group of friends on twitter instagram, facebook (made even easier with the new ‘close friends’ tab) we can pick up on moods, interests and general things happening in their lives without being in proximity to them. I think of it to be a long running conversation between friends were no actual talking or communicating has to occur between the two. Really interesting. Is this why we so often re-fresh our news feeds hoping to catch a glimpse of what’s happening in our friends lives. Natural curiosity or addiction? Who knows. But I stick to the point I made earlier in the session – You can learn more from someones news feed then you can ever in a short conversation.  

And I’m not sure if I’m entirely okay with that. Too often I’ll be having a conversation with someone and then I realise I already read/seen  all about whatever we seem to be discussing the previous day. 

I’m not entirely sure how this turned out to be a ramble about social networking habits, oh well. Perhaps I need some sleep. 

This week got me thinking about my consumer habits. The shift towards the long tail and the rise of stores such as ebay and amazon have made a fantastic improvement to my life (though not my wallet) I started thinking specifically of a product I enjoy most – cds. I listen to a lot of music – I used to be one of those people who would like a band and then torrent their whole discography. I still do, though theres certain bands I’ll have to buy the cd, and I decided to take a closer look as to why (more than I really really just like the band and want to support them through all means…)

 Bands that I like, I’ll take the time to go buy the cd, I like having the physical copy as well as buying a ticket for their show, merch etc. I find myself supporting a lot of Australian bands the most these days. That said,  this week I did purchase two cds. 

 Why? Added Value. Popular alternative australian band  along with their fantastic marketing team had put a few pre-order CD packs together and it ended up only costing me a few dollars on top of what I already way paying for the ticket to the show, chuck in some signed merch and items you can’t get anywhere else and you have a winning combo. The other cd I bought this week came with a free dvd of their latest tour…see where I’m going with this?

Traditional sources are having to find new ways to stay in game – and they are just barely. I think by adding in ‘one off’ items and products that you wont be able to buy anywhere else is a fantastic way of making sure people are actually going to buy the product. Mostly these days CDs are leaked online (and downloadable) days, weeks before their release dates and often if people don’t *really* like what they’re hearing they’re not going to bother without some form of persuasion. 

 Why do I choose the more traditional way of accessing media rather than using services like iTunes/spotify/amazon + kindle? I think I like the physicality of these items – and thats what I take pleasure from. I like them on display, I like having them in my car, I like swapping cds with friends. Though the giant shift towards the digital has made is so simple to get these cds for free/easily. I guess I just really like the bands. 

 What do you guys think, is it a losing battle?

 “If old consumers were seen as compliant, then new consumers are resistant, taking media into their own hands” – Henry Jenkins

I’m not sure if I’ve gone a bit off track this week, tackling something that probably (maybe, I don’t know?) isn’t the first thing you thought about when the topic of ‘Media Convergence’ was raised. I know my first thought was: IPHONE… So I’m going to move away from that and talk about Blogs.

I follow a lot of blogs (I was catching up after a day of no internet, it’s probably why this blog is so late) a lot of buddying ‘journalists’ whom are well on the road to creating a business out of nothing. Selling their writing with no prior knowledge or practice, no tafe, no uni. And it almost makes me want to drop out of university and just start blogging 24/7.

With my career aspirations it seems pretty silly to be at uni, I should be writing. I should write more for fun, for my own amusement and for hopefully someone else’s. That’s the way of the future. You need to sell yourself, a package. Be it witty, amusing or relatable that’s what people are looking for, that’s why people are following blogs instead of current affair feeds and watching vlogs instead of 7pm news.

When I was younger, say 6 years ago. I read a lot of Gala Darling – whom I’ve watched grow into a successful brand. (not that I can stand to read her glitzy, pink ‘everything’s wonderful’ drab anymore..) she created this empire out of nothing,  once local melbourne lifestyle blogger turned successful New York businesswoman selling her brand to papers, magazines and taking up motivational speaker gigs. Her book – is not a book in the traditional sense it’s an E-Book which you can buy in monthly installments with her podcast. Ingenious right?

Jenkins talks about the media and how it used to be a ‘one fit’s most’ where the media would try to create something for the masses. Where now theres a push for narrowing – people will find the content they’re after. Making content for a niche, not for the masses. This sort of narrowing is bringing more content, more variety and is definitely in my eyes doing well in the fight against media giants.

 “New media enable or even force us to retreat in a personal information space, where we exercise an unparalleled degree over what we watch and what we hear, what we keep, discard or forward” (Krishnan and Jones, 2005) – Mark Deuze

We are the machine boys and girls. Keep blogging.