Category Archives: Blog Project Prompts

Effect of Social Media on News

As authors move from print to screen, multimodal works are becoming a norm. The topic of my research revolves around the effect of social media on news and news interpretation. In order to incorporate data into my research paper, I plan to include graphs such as pie charts and bar graphs to outline the impact that social media has had on the news. By doing so, the reader will have a visual to help understand the severity of the issue. I also plan to incorporate clips from TED Talks panels guided by experts in the field. Rather than simply quoting the author, providing a audio/visual clip aids in the emphasis of the issue. Incorporating multimodal sources as a part of my bibliography is an overall aid in my argument and represents a shift in the way traditional essays are being written today.

Blog Post 12: Constructing A Good Multimodal Research Essay (My Perspective)

Throughout this semester, I've learned many important aspects of how to construct a strong multimodal research essay. In addition, I've also learned that a multimodal research essay requires the right balance of textual, visual, and auditory appeals in order to carry a strong, persuasive argument to the readers.

The first step in constructing a good research essay is having a strong question or point you, as a author, would like to discuss. This questional thesis should be overarching and be present in idea throughout the essay. In addition, there should be other subpoints that correlate to the main research question, but provide insight to the topic/controversy at hand.

There should also be other information that also links the subpoints and the research question together. Expert opinions, factual information, and progress on the controversy should also be mentioned in the essay. The essay must also discuss both aspects of the controversy, both pro and con.

When it comes to the visual and auditory aspects of the essay, subtle additions to the essay can really persuade readers to your points/aspects of the arguments. Too much however, and the essay loses its presence in what its trying to evoke. Adding too many pictures confuses the reader in what he/her is supposed to focus on, and can actually weaken your argument. Focusing on passage breaks and transitions and adding multimedia there can really help visually summarize what the point was about, or show a certain perspective on the point you're trying to get across.


Research Gone Wrong , Blog 11


Throughout majority of my research process, I focused on one particular question, “How has the progression of technology affected the doctor patient relationship?” In the beginning of my research, I basically made the claim that the progression of technology was very harmful to the doctor patient relationship, which I should have never done. This should give you a sense of how biased the beginning of my research became. Due to a lack of understanding of what a RESEARCH paper was, I would intentionally go out looking for sources that supported my thesis statement.  I really regret doing this because going back to fix it became very time consuming. From now on, I am going to conduct research the correct way, with an unbiased mind, and I will not be recommending this method to anyone nor will I partake in it ever again. It wasn't until I was more than half way into the research process when I began to realize that I was on the verge of trapping myself into writing a one page paper which would eventually end up talking about nothing. After recognizing the problem and fixing it, writing an 1800 word paper didn't seem so frightening anymore.

As I got further into my research, I began to look at different aspects of the issue regarding the doctor patient relationship and technological progression. Once reevaluating my proposed question, I began to think outside of the box. My final research question ended up being “How is technology being used to cause such harmful effects on the relationship between a doctor and their patient? I haven't gotten a concrete answer yet, however, I have found some possible answers, such as wanting to conserve time and money. What do you all think could be some possible factors?

Crap Detection

        Technology has had a major effect on the way information is distributed in today’s society. As we pass from generation to generation, technology is becoming a big factor in peoples’ lives. Social media are computer-mediated tools that allow people to create, share or exchange information and ideas in a virtual community. In the past decade, social media has risen to the top of the social agenda, becoming a norm in today’s society. Through study it has been shown that the average person spends roughly two hours on social media in a day. Whether they are having a conversation or simply scrolling through their news feed, a substantial amount of time is spent scrolling through social media. In many ways social media has acted as a stimulus, allowing people from around the world to exchange thoughts and ideas, but one can only wonder if social media is doing more harm than good. Social media accounts for a large amount of unreliable information that is spread through the internet. To combat this issue, Rheingold offers a solution. He entitles his screening process "crap detection" in which users perform methods such as background checks on authors and cross references to check the reliability of sources. The application of Rheingold's method can work towards resolving this growing issue.

Blog Post 11

My research essay talks about the impacts of technology on family communication and bonding. My focus is on the negative aspect and how technology takes away from face-to-face interaction between family members. To show this is true I provide statistics, study results, a comparison of before and after family interaction, as well as an example of a family affected by technology addiction. I think my strongest aspect is the introduction, maybe because I know how much emphasis Dr. Wharton has put into it. So I focused on this the most and this is what I came up with:

“Technology has become an integral part of our lives with many benefits such as instant access to information and means of communication. Without doubt, electronic devices are making our lives much easier; however, studies show we are spending more time interacting with technology than with our family. Today, “the average American child grows up in a home with 3 televisions, 2 music CD players, 3 radios, 2 VCR/DVD players, 1 video game player, and 1 computer. Teens, age 13 to 18 spend 72 hours a week interacting with electronic gadgets.  Only 45% of teenagers spend at least 9 hours each week with their family” (Bowman). Even though technological advances are correlated with many positive benefits, they have also negatively impacted family communication and bonding. Family values seem to disappear as technology becomes deeply embedded in our lives.”

What do you guys think about it?

I continue my research essay by looking at and comparing a pre-digital age picture (a family playing a board game together) with a cartoon representing the modern family (cyberspace bonding). Then I talk about a couple of studies which support my opinion on the matter. Finally, I consider an opposing view… which does not necessarily say that technology has a positive benefit but it states that "Technology is enabling new forms of family connectedness that revolve around remote mobile phone interactions and communal internet experiences." This survey finds that those with the most technology are more likely to share moments and check in with their families while online. Ultimately, this study supports the idea that technology is inevitable in family communication (no matter what the relationship is) and it is correlated with some benefits.

My question is; Is this enough for an opposing view or should I replace it with something more specific like; Others say that technology is bringing families together and it is in fact a positive impact…My second question is; should I counteract this opposing view with another source that supports my opinion or should I jump straight to the conclusion?!

From my research into this subject I have learned that you should not come up with a thesis unless your research is complete.  Because, you might not find enough (good) evidence that supports your argument. This results in either your paper not being credible and you just wasted so much time…or you realize that you have to change your thesis and ultimately all your sources with the right ones... again you just wasted time. If you don’t have compelling evidence, your opinion alone will not convince the audience. I liked the most Howard Rheingold’s readings because he talks about crap detection and tips on how to distinguish a good article/source from the pool of information available. This was particularly helpful for my research essay.






Help Me Help Myself by Jcook

AAPL think different

Through my literature review I found out there is a strain on consumers and producers relationship. Many scholars have argued that social media played a gigantic role in the relationship coming to bittersweet end. With all the current shootings and police brutality I witness the hatred consumers harbor for producers. On Twitter, a group of activist advised local citizens to not converse with traditional journalist (Huffington Post, CNN journalist). The activists were warning the locals that the journalist would twist their words and/or leave out important information. I wanted to investigate the truth behind those statements. I wanted to know why consumers rather report the news themselves and spread awareness via social media versus getting it broadcasted on the news circuits. For this research project my question is “Why are consumers not willing to be just consumers anymore and is there anyway to satisfy both the consumers and producers?

Furthering my research I found seminars called Media401 where journalists from all different avenues came together and discuss issues. One issue that stood out was a topic about how to define journalism. Some of the members believed that journalism is transitioning to citizen journalism while others believed that traditional journalism is something that cannot be altered. The reason why journalism has only one definition is because ethical guidelines placed upon real journalist. There is huge difference between activism and journalism. One is going to give consumers’ information just how it was giving to them and another is going to investigate the story and give out what is needed not wanted. Journalists are expected to report a certain way and as consumers we should respect that.

Being that we are all connected on this blog it allows me a chance to get some feedback/ opinions on this topic. I would love it if everyone would tell me his or her answer for my research question. Please give supporting reasoning for your answer. I do not mind if you link your resources because that will give me more sources to connect with the ones I already have. Also, in 2-3 sentences answer, “What changes need to be done in order to restore the original reader/publisher relationship?” Basically, how do we get back to allowing the professionals do their jobs? And how can we stop so many people from feeling like it’s their responsibility to inform the public about problems.

What I want my readers/ peers to get from my research is how to accurately use social media. They should be aware of the ways to get involved with local issues and what to expect from traditional journalist. They should know the correct procedures in citizen journalism because they not the professionals and unlike the professionals they have no ethical guidelines to follow. I want to bring consciousness to how we post, tweet, and share information. Hopefully, as a generation we can restore the consumer/producer relationship we had before the digital age.

Blog Post #3 Autonomy In The Digital World

As of right now the idea of autonomy in the digital world sounds good but i believe it can not be achieved.  I believe that privacy of ones information and image would be good but as Rosenberg stated it would take policy making on different sites and platforms.  Until that becomes achievable a person should responsibly control their information and image that is put into the digital world.   With the continued advancement and availability to so much information on the web actual privacy of ones information, pictures and lifestyle  is something that will be open for everybody to see.  The digital world is open for not only the government to retrieve information but your job/company and other random people to view and interpret.

The internet is a public place which is watched by the masses so i agree with Godin and Richardson that a person holds responsibility to protect their information and image.  I feel things that a person finds sensitive and personal for their life should not be put online on things like social media and blogs because it is open for criticism and surveillance.  A persons image is what they have and it could represent their company and brand.  Some things such as feelings whether nice or not towards a person or thing should be carefully put on the internet because it can put a negative light to ones self or the company who you represent on a day to day bases.

Autonomy is something that should be protected because everyone has the right to keep what they want private.  Unfortunately trying to be private in the current digital world is like trying to be private on a stage in front of a crowd.  Hopefully in the future there will be policies put in place to allow people to express their selves and vent their personal problems and keep it private on some type of platform.  Until that day i believe that responsibility and good decision making is the most important thing when diving into the digital world with your information, personal life and image.

Blog #12: Multimodal Composition

In Writer Designer, the authors maintain that, "To produce a successful text, writers must be able to consciously use different modes both alone and in combination with each other to communicate their ideas to others" (3). Drawing upon work by the New London Group, they describe five modes of communication: linguistic ("The linguistic mode refers to the use of language, which usually means written or spoken words." (5)), visual ("The visual mode refers to the use of images and other characteristics that readers see." (6)), aural ("The aural mode focuses on sound." (8)), spatial ("The spatial mode is about physical arrangement." (10), and gestural ("The gestural mode refers to the way movement, such as body language, can make meaning." (12)).

Arguably, as academic writing shifts from the page to the screen, it is becoming more multimodal. Although at present the linguistic mode--in the form of alphabetic text on the printed page--still remains dominant in academic articles and books, artifacts such as Bound by Law, the excellent text Understanding Comics, and the born digital journal Kairos--to name just a few examples--demonstrate that multimodal scholarship is gaining an audience within and beyond the academy. In this class, in addition to reading examples of multimodal scholarship, you have been producing multimodal forms of academic genres such as the annotated bibliography and the research essay.

Once again this week, the blog provides a forum in which you can explore ideas for the research essay. How will you use or integrate multimodal composition in your research essay? Will you be including images, graphs, diagrams, or perhaps even video or audio files as supporting evidence, in a manner similar to the way you might include a direct quote from a book or article? What do you expect such multimodal evidence will add to your argument? Are you relying on images, charts, graphs, diagrams, or video/audio files as sources of information? How has the inclusion of multimodal sources influenced your research? How will you be using layout and type/font design in order to help organize and present your argument in the research essay?

Posting: Everyone

Commenting: Anyone who needs the extra credit towards the Blog Project.

Taking a break: No one

This week, use your work in progress as the foundation for your blog post. Consider carefully how your research essay will integrate multimodal composition and design. Then discuss how you will combine the linguistic mode with the aural, spatial, visual, or gestural mode to enhance the rhetorical appeal of your argument. As always, before you post, please carefully read and follow the guidelines and posting information for this blog.

Featured Image Credit: "Vallingby 269.jpg" by Design for Health on Flickr.

Looking for needles in a haystack

Trying to find quality information on the internet can be like sifting through garbage looking for that one good piece of information.  When writing a paper, especially an academic paper, your references have to be of good quality and reputable.  Most peoples first stop when it comes to doing research is Google.  Here is the problem that comes along with using the internet, anyone can post anything on the internet.

I do not completely agree with Rheingold's point of view.  The internet is a tool and yes people need to be taught how to use it.  By the time someone is in college they have already established very poor habits.  And who is to decide what is the best way to use the internet?  I do believe that people have a responsibility not purposefully place false information on the internet, but regardless of how crazy something may be, people should be able to place what they want on the web.  For anyone who is somewhat knowledgeable about how to use the internet, it is easy to sift through the good and bad on the internet.  I've learned many skills in this class that will benefit me for a long time on doing just that.

Some of the things I do this is verifying that any site I use is a reputable site.  Once that's done verify that any article I cite has an author.  I also like to check on other works of that author to make sure he or she is not crazy.  If need be, I check to see who owns the actual website.  It is a lot like being a detective, looking for detractors from an author or an article.

garbage on the net

I own my data!

The terms of service agreement for certain websites I believe are made to be long winded and difficult to read.  I do not believe that these companies want anyone actually reading them because people would discuss them.  Once people start talking about something it become a topic that people would harp on.  With companies taking and owning things that someone post online, people give up those rights of ownership once they click on the terms of service agreement.

The idea that Coursesmart is snitching on me if I did my homework or not infuriates me.  After reading the article by