This Is Tom Pike – Bio Remix

I figure Tom must love his friends. The source files he gave me pointed out that he loves his time most when he’s with them. At first, he’s alone, on the big stage. But then he’s surrounded by his friends. Laughing. Drinking. Smiling. And it’s an interesting kind of love. A mutual love of time spent together. The sun rises and it sets as the waves role in, but the one constant is friendship.

Music: The xx – Angels

Participating in the always-on lifestyle – Danah Boyd

Danah Boyd sure knows how to write. She also has one of the most accessible understandings of the online sphere that I’ve ever read. Below are quotes from her article “Participating in the always-on lifestyle” (citation can be found in references) that I wish to respond to in some way, shape or form.

“Because of technology, the online is always just around the corner”

“It’s no longer about on or off really. It’s about living in a world where being networked to people and information wherever and whenever you need it is just assumed”

“My always-on-ness doesn’t mean that I’m always-accesible-to-everyone”

Danah sums up the techno-anxious state that could safely be assumed about those of us who are always-on. Regardless of where I am, there is some piece of technology around me that connects me to the online. Even so, while I might be totally unreachable, traces of my personality, pictures of me, my writing, can be found and consumed. I wonder who I do this for. Danah notes that most write for an audience (small as it may be), yet I’m not so sure I have an audience other than myself. At least not yet. So am I writing for writing’s sake? The answer could be yes, but I don’t write personal notes. I write for an audience. Whether it exists or not.

“Different social contexts mean different relationships to being always on… All channels are accessible, but it doesn’t mean I will access them”

“It’s not just about instant gratification either… what I want is to bring people and information into context. It’s about enhancing the experience”

“It’s about enhancing the experience”. Sure, it does ruin pub banter. No longer can your know it all mate claim an outrageous fact about Lebron James slapping him a high five in a Las Vegas club which the paparazzi snapped up with applause. You just search it. But then it becomes a matter of balance. No phones at the dinner table for example. These sorts of techniques in differing contexts are essential.

“Always on folks are more interested in an augmented reality”

“Technology doesn’t simply break social conventions – it introduces new possibilities for them”

“Aren’t we moving away from an industrial economy into an information one?”

“When people assume you share everything, they don’t ask you about what you don’t share”

We really can share ourselves online. Linked through a variety of mediums, we can share in a way that isn’t possible face to face. We can speak about love, our dislikes, our problems (dare I say it), and no one has to hear them. Or, should they want to, a friend, a lover, an enemy can read these and gain access to our lives that one wouldn’t dare ask for.

New Social Media (To Me)

Pinterest Logo
“Pinterest is an online pinboard”
Organize and Share the things you love.

Pinterest is an interesting concept. It seems the main function of the site is to create an online visual persona for the person who utilises it. By collating a pool of images you could begin to see what this person likes, their colour pallet, locations they like, sports they enjoy, their thoughts on love. An interesting adaptation of a picture saying a thousand words. Yet interest itself seems very text dominated. Unlike Tumblr, the focus here seems to be on the discussion around the images, and not so much the image itself. It also offers the option of compartmentalising your images. I.e. organising them in groups. Also, you can get “repinned” – which I guess is similar to a reblog.

It works, don’t get me wrong. But as a visual medium I think it falls short.

Habbo Logo

My analysis here will be limited as I will not be creating a Habbo account, but from the looks of it, it’s a second life network. Now these do scare me. As much as we can create personas for ourselves online, going to the extent of creating a little character you live through in a virtual world is bleeding the lines of what’s acceptable practice. I say this because I think there is a limit, however tenuous this may be, that one can get to. A limit in so far as what is real and what is not. Regardless, there is a certain amount of trust that one places in these sites that the person using it is who they say they are. This is obviously inherent in all online profiling. Yet the idea of creating an avatar scares the shit out of me. No thanks.

Who do I want to be?

The best place for me to start here is to summarise where I already am. I’ve got a Facebook, a twitter account (@yearingcat), a Tumblr, and this wordpress. I’ve also got a delicious account, instagram and a gravatar, but they’re definitely secondary.

So what do these say about me? If I look over my tumblr I’d think it says most about what ‘looks good’ to me. Simple that may be, it shows my visual lean and explores where I want to be. Images of New York, various actors, vintage motorbikes and the snow are definitely things that motivate me to work, live, and breathe.

So too, they represent a projected version of myself. I see these images and I think to myself that if someone was to look, they would be getting a relatively abstract, yet true, representation of me. Over analysis aside, it’s an insight into what I wish and want myself to be and as such it defines me.

This process is a very active one. Comparatively, I cannot remember the last time I posted a status on Facebook. I don’t feel motivated to. I don’t feel like reaching out to an audience. After all, the friends I want to see I see in person. And those I don’t probably wouldn’t care less if I posted a witty status into their news feed.

Where Facebook differs is its representation of me. Facebook allows others to create an image of me that may be true, may be false or might even be both. After all, a conversation on a wall post is seeable by all, so as much as you might be responding to your friend, you’re also performing for an audience and existing on their page as a part of them as much as a part of yourself.

I would make reference here to Jay Rosen:

“if all should speak, who should be left to listen?”

Indeed I ‘speak’ quite a lot about myself. Through images, through posts, through tweets. But where I would counter Rosen is in my ability to also listen to myself. To be reflective on what I post, and how I ‘speak’. Undoubtedly we are more active as online users, yet I also think we are more receptive as creators of our own image.

For this reason, I would hope to present myself in as many ways as possible. Through the online platform, I would hope to put forth that I am as much the person people know me for and I will attempt to add the colouring of how I know myself. If an audience should wish to ‘listen’ to me, they might find out something interesting they didn’t know. And if they are willing to ‘listen’, I’ll be all ears in return.

Self Assessment

Below you will find how I plan to assess myself over the semester.
There are four key categories, each of which comes with a brief description.
Below this, you will find a breakdown of how to achieve certain grades.

Assessment Categories

1. Topical posts
Posts are perhaps the most obvious part of the blog, yet in order to keep on top of things it will be important to summarise key ideas and thoughts from both the lecture and the tute. This involves 2 compulsory posts each week.
As these key ideas will be framing for thoughts, another few posts will provide the opportunity to extend these concepts and achieve a better mark.

2. Community
Comments on peers blogs, analysis, and interaction amongst the blogosphere are key to improving one’s following and enriching the blogging experience.
Interaction with peers, academics and an increase in followers will achieve the best mark.

3. Blog structure
The blog needs to be visually satisfying. It needs to be easy to use, and organised well. Alongside this, it should show a sense of the blog’s community, and allow a follower to navigate with ease. Tags should also be used to aid in the above.

4. Reflection
As apart from topical posts, reflection posts are not as regular. That being said, these posts are supposed to be critical incident type posts. Whereby, they outline a major change in understanding, and epiphany, that could also enlighten followers.

Grading

HD:
Visually satisfying blog that can be easily navigated, regular, informing and creative posts implementing all types of media, regular critical reflection and influential interaction with the community.

D:
Great blog structure, easy to use, regular posts that implement variety of media types, regular critical reflection and regular interaction with the community.

C:
Good blog structure, regular posts that show some increase in knowledge, some critical reflection and a sporadic interaction with the community.

P:
Blog can be used with some difficulty, reflection is shallow and does not show critical thinking, posts are irregular yet do show some increase in knowledge, little interaction with community.

F:
Limited to no posts, no interaction with community, no critical reflection and clunky blog structure.

Meeting

It’s the funniest thing when you’re sitting there waiting for someone you’ve never met before. For each person that comes by, you raise your head in hope and give a polite nod or smile when they’re not the one you’re waiting for. Then again, you don’t really know. You look for a name tag, or some kind of defining physical feature that could betray the waver you heard over the phone. Maybe you single someone out and bite the bullet, maybe you don’t. Funny isn’t it.

The Past Is Another Country

“[Digital filmmaking] had the most profound effect on TV through the decade, changing not only technology but the way stories were told”.

Graeme Blundell

“Like many a prophet, I lived to see my prophecy fulfilled in alarming ways.”

Andrew Billen, on his early 00’s suggestion of social nuance and human nature existing in reality TV

“[Big Brother] was a precursor to the truly Orwellian world of fully interactive television.”

Graeme Blundell

Graeme Blundell is an Australian actor, director, producer, writer and biographer.

Andrew Billen is a British TV Critic and feature writer for The Times

Remix This… Bio

I come from the country.

It defines me in various ways. The way I treat people. The way I interact.

But it also grounds me.

I only spent 6 years of my life there, until I moved to the Peninsula.

At the school named Peninsula. At the golf courses of the Peninsula. On the beaches of the Peninsula.

Yet I don’t feel linked to these as I do the country.

They don’t define me in the same way. They don’t hold the same reverence in my memories.

Why that is I’m not entirely sure. Perhaps being that little bit older helps. You let thing wash over you a little more and don’t let the little things change your ways as much.

Admittedly, I do romanticize the country. The clean air, the warmth, the fire, the wind, the water. The ocean, the birds, the cattle, the tractors. My Pub.

But I think this is natural. When you are small its easy to consider those things that are bigger than you are also of more importance.

The people, the buildings, the events.

A pub isn’t your usual place of upbringing, but then again, what is?

I’d hide in between crates of beer, and shovel ice into bags and package it up.

We’d climb on roofs and hide under the deck, searching for money.

All the while I’d make a new friend, or lose one to the big smoke. Get in a fight or hurt someone’s feelings.

Feelings are important.

These days I’m bigger, more reflective. Perhaps a little wiser and a little more attuned.

The little things still satisfy me despite living in the big smoke that used to gobble up my friends.

I can see the value in lots of things, not just those that appear before me and I can differentiate between the big things and those that aren’t worth my time.

After all, moving from a small town certainly does open one’s eyes.

These are nervous times…

Television is still very much a more derided form than the internet.

I guess at this being the cause of its programming. There’s some kind of hierarchy, or tradition, that exists around TV. Of course, the internet still has to involve an editor, at least, to act in a similar way to a producer in television. Someone has to choose what goes where. Yet TV is under intense scrutiny in the process and delivery of this choice. (I am of course referring to the programming of TV more than I am the production of it)

I am not, however, so sure the distinction between the two deliveries is very clear. If we consider television a canon of everyday practices, it is not enough to define it by its existence amongst a network or conglomerate of programming. Just the same, televisions ability to act as a form of social experience – of viewing, listening, analysing and discussing – is as much at home on the internet as it is being carried by a TV.

So why is TV more derided? To that end, I am not entirely sure.

“TV shows became better than mainstream movies”.

More recently, as Graeme Blundell notes in his article “The Past Is Another Country” for The Australian, “TV shows became better than mainstream movies”. He makes particular reference to The Sopranos, and in my own experience – naive as it may be – I often would confuse The Godfather and The Sopranos in discussions with friends. By no means intentionally, but from what I had seen online (several cut out scenes from the show on YouTube) I had no reason to believe it a TV show rather than a movie. It is in fact a complex long form narrative, made very popular by the likes of HBO and Showtime. And it seems these networks have nailed the middle ground between cinema and traditional TV broadcast. No commercials, on demand viewing.

So if we are to get back to my first statement that TV is a much more derided form than the internet, can we then suggest this is because of its links to film and film criticism that carriers such as HBO and Showtime incite? Or is it simply the ‘broadcast’ nature of television that opens it up to a wider audience and forces it into their living rooms that makes it more critiqued? After all, the internet is full of choice. TV is far behind in those terms.