Tagged: networked media

Ethics

Always trying to be as honest and open is important when blogging, because it is something that still separates it from mainstream media, at least for now. With the rise of social media platforms such as Instagram, where paid posts are getting more and more common from bloggers and personalities because of just how wide and accessible it is becoming, it’s good to have a background of ethics to keep you grounded and secure. Lawrie Zion wrote a great piece on the ethics of blogging.

  1.  Be honest about what is opinion
  2. Don’t plagiarise/use others’ work without permission or correct licensing
  3. Always give credit where you can!
  4. Correct any mistakes as soon as you can
  5. Encourage a conversation/discourse
  6. Transparency is key
  7. Remember: once it’s on the internet in the public domain, it’s there forever
  8. Take responsibility
  9. Consider what you post and all possible consequences
  10. Create an online community

Copyright

As a blogger, copyright is an important aspect of online media. We must be aware of not being able to use other people’s work without written permission, unless it comes under Creative Commons licences (and then we must follow these licences, which may include not being able to change the work, not being able to profit from it, and many more), which also includes embedding material.

RMIT has a resource for copyright on blogging which shows these regulations in a quick easy to follow guide.

Below is an easy guide for how to use Creative Commons

Blog Case Study – Minimalist Baker

I’ve been following Minimalist Baker  (@minimalistbaker on Instagram) for about two years. I used to date a guy that was vegetarian (and eventually vegan) which led me to search for some new cooking and food ideas to try out that weren’t the meat based diet I was used to at the time, and that’s when I discovered it.

I’ve recently become vegan myself and have only just started to get into cooking regularly, and while it’s not technically a vegan blog, all of the posts are plant based, simple recipes that require 10 ingredients or less, 1 bowl or 1 pot or 30 minutes or less to prepare. So I really love that most of the recipes are super easy to replicate, adapt or learn from, especially when experimenting with a different or new diet. The blog itself is also aesthetically pleasing, including great food photography, laid out well, with different categories for recipes including hashtags, through a WordPress blog.

It works well because Dana uses friendly, casual language that is not only easy to follow but also enjoyable to read – she’s established her voice well and consistently over the years she has run it. As the food photographer she also creates engaging and even beautiful images that highlight each recipe, while John handles the technical side of blogging including design, branding and product development (all this info can be found here!).

Dana and John use a range of social media, including personal twitter, Instagram, the blog Instagram (as mentioned previously) to reach a wide audience from these areas. In the past they worked with brands they liked which could also have reached a wider audience, however, they have since stopped that.

What is a blog?

Hey there!

For my first blog post I’ll be looking into what is a blog and how they developed, by looking at readings: Jill Walker Rettberg’s Blogging and Adrian Miles’s “Blogs in Media Education: A Beginning.”

As mentioned by Rettberg, the term “blog” originated from the phrase web log, with log coming from traditional nautical navigation, in the way that the chronological entries were written in a logbook, similarly, a blog is generally defined as a web site that has dated entries appearing in reverse chronological order – with the most recent appearing first. It’s also important to note that blogs can be very broad in subject matter – you can find one on almost any topic you can think of. Rettberg also notes that the blog itself can be seen as a medium, containing more specific genres, such as diary style blogging or political blogs. However, it’s also clear that the specific definition of blogs, and even the idea of whether it is a medium or a genre itself, can be somewhat contentious. The term “blog” itself was first used in 1997, and initial blogs from the 90’s were quite different to those of today. Initially, they contained a lot of links in a list format, users had to manually code their blogs through HTML from scratch, before templates and blogging websites began and became popular, like blogger, for example.

From Miles’s article, he draws a similar definition regarding blogs – a web based publication consisting of entries (posts) published in reverse chronological order. Miles writes about the use of blogging in teaching and learning, emphasising the importance of teaching the use of blogs, as something to learn as a post-print medium, as a contribution to contemporary media. Strategies such as ‘seeding’; instructing tasks for students to blog about to get used to the medium, before it’s used actively and for extracurricular means and developing an online identity.

From articles/excerpts:

Rettberg, Jill Walker. Blogging. Cambridge: Polity Press, 2008. Print. (p. 4, 17-30)

Miles, Adrian. “Blogs in Media Education: A Beginning.” Screen Education 41 66–69. Print.