Essay 2

Joseph Chan                                                                                                                4/10/18

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I developed my blog to express myself through an alternative method that doesn’t require Facebook or Instagram. My focus was creating a blog oriented towards people planning to visit Vancouver or locals who are just looking for more places to explore and visit. I reinsured the fact that I’m not a very expressive person when it comes to online publishing as I’m still cautious about my personal ideas and info that I share online with the public. However, I learned a lot about monetizing a website and different ways to appeal to the public eye and the proper way to grab people’s attention.

The main appeal of my website is that it’s very easy to navigate and the options for blog categories aren’t so vast that you feel overwhelmed and loss in all the posts. The first thing you are greeted with when opening the website is my most recent blogs and the image of the topic. I believe, that having an image of the topic was essential as it helps stimulate visual cues and may raise the curiosity of people who are visiting the website for the first time (Psychology of Cyberspace – The Online Disinhibition Effect, 2018). Although, at times I felt that it was hard to differentiate my blog from others as I looked at other people’s blogs in the class and noticed that many layouts were like mine and didn’t have any significant difference (Design machines | Louder Than Ten, 2018). I believe what draws people to my blog is that it isn’t overly complicated to navigate and it only takes a few seconds to find the post you’re looking for.

I believe that my blog has done a complete 180 turn from what I had originally envisioned and what it has become now. At the beginning my blog was lacking heavily in design and I was never able to sort my posts into their rightful pages until now. I also changed the theme of my website from “Twenty-Seven” to “Bulk”. I believed that this was a huge turning point as it allowed me to have better control over my website and change features such as the background image. I also went further in depth into my intro page by adding a photo of myself to give viewers an idea of what kind of person I am as well as the location of Vancouver in google maps. My blog has progressed rapidly from being a second-hand twitter website to one that reports on views, restaurants, and music in Vancouver.

My google analytic numbers showed that my website wasn’t encountering enough traffic to even consider monetizing it. I essentially confirmed what I already thought the results would show which is most the visits to my blog where from me, the Professor/TA, and students being forced to peer review my page. I believe that one of the main causes of this is that there already exists so many blogs like mine in Vancouver, which are already established such as “The Daily Hive Vancouver”. Furthermore, I believe that drawing in a new audience requires constant advertisement through platforms such as Facebook or Instagram. Something I don’t believe many of friends would interested in as they are already focused with their own school work and hobby’s. I feel that it’s very easy to lose an audience’s attention, especially if you don’t keep to a constant upload schedule (Forbes Welcome, 2018).  In addition, I have not received any comments on my website which I believe is due to the low traffic that I’m experiencing.

I don’t believe that I will continue to blog as It has nothing to do with my major or future job goal which is policing. However, I found that I learned a lot about website designing and addressing current trends and capturing an audience. I believe that these features will help me in the future as I have considered opening a business that has sales in security technology which will most likely required a well-designed website.

I’ve certainly become more alert about my online presence now and I think that I will be moving further away from having one. The reason for this is that I’ve discovered how open and easily accessible information is on the internet. What can sometimes appear to be private and secure information that only a select group of people you want to have access too can soon be spread across the internet (Gunter, 2009,/Qian, 2007) While I’m not shy of meeting new people and telling them information about me. It certainly frightens me how companies such as Facebook can get away with gathering tons of information from your phone and keep it without your consent. I’m especially cautious about the media that I share on Instagram as I’ve had to delete pictures from there that I don’t think future employers would find appropriate when looking for a prospective candidate. I’m moving further away from having an online presence to get to know myself better while attempting to keep my private information from being available on the internet.

When looking at the progression of my website I’ve noticed a steadier increase to a more detailed and public oriented presentation of the website with blogs written more like a review page then a blog. At the beginning, I wasn’t too sure what I wanted my blog too be and I would treat it almost like twitter and write random comments such as “Where has Fleetwood Mac been my whole life and why has my mom been hiding it from me?” However, as time progressed I realized that no one would want to read posts like this, especially when websites like twitter already existed (Bai, 2008). When I realized this I almost immediately switched towards writing my posts more like a yelp review to give viewers suggestions on the topic and give my own opinion on the subject itself.

I learned a lot about website design and the effort it takes to keep a blog constantly running and up to date. However, I don’t see it as the outlet for me as I don’t feel quite comfortable with sharing private information. Nor do I have an interest with writing my interests on reviews on it when websites like Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram already exist.

 

      

References

Bai, B., Law, R., & Wen, I. (2008). The impact of website quality on customer satisfaction and purchase intentions: Evidence from Chinese online visitors. International Journal Of Hospitality Management, 27(3), 391-402. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ijhm.2007.10.008

Design machines | Louder Than Ten. (2018). Louder Than Ten. Retrieved 11 April 2018, from https://louderthanten.com/coax/design-machines

Forbes Welcome. (2018). Forbes.com. Retrieved 11 April 2018, from https://www.forbes.com/sites/shelbycarpenter/2016/05/13/the-toast-is-toast-and-its-devastating/#6e1ea7fe48f6

Gunter, B. (2009). Blogging – private becomes public and public becomes personalised. Aslib Proceedings, 61(2), 120-126. http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/00012530910946875

Psychology of Cyberspace – The Online Disinhibition Effect. (2018). Truecenterpublishing.com. Retrieved 11 April 2018, from http://truecenterpublishing.com/psycyber/disinhibit.html

Qian, H., & Scott, C. (2007). Anonymity and Self-Disclosure on Weblogs. Journal Of Computer-Mediated Communication, 12(4), 1428-1451. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1083-6101.2007.00380.x