This has been a very interesting class. It’s the only class I’ve taken that has been almost completely on the web. Before taking Feedback Journalism I never participated in blogging, commenting, and communicating in general on the internet(except on Facebook), and I’ve learned a lot about it. With the shift of journalism to the internet, I think a web-based class like this is very beneficial and crucial to the education of journalism students. There were some assignments I really enjoyed, and some not so much. There were some I though of as successful, and some not so much.
Upon entering the Daily Collegian website, it’s hard to ignore the story entitled “Sex on the Lawn Back at Umass.” I had no idea what it was, but after reading the story, I think its a hilarious, and very good idea. The event is meant to teach students about reproductive health and rights. It’s not just going to people people standing behing booths, though. There will be sex-coaching, baked goods, balloons , and pinatas shaped like penises and breasts, dancing, and games such as twister and sex trivia. It sounds like a fun event to go to with friends or as a couple, and a great way to get young peoples attention and educate them about sex.
Ok, so in the beginning of the semester I wrote a post about gorillas creating art…I learned about it in an Anthro class I’m taking. I don’t know what it is about my classes, but now in my Linguistics class, we’ve been discussing apes language-learning abilities. It’s really a very interesting subject.
I really tryed to get into Twitter. I followed the people on the list, as well as a few people of my choice. I sent a few @messages, direct messaged a couple of my friends who I started following, but never figured out the retweet thing. I went on it once a day for a week trying to figure it out, but I just couldn’t get into it. I felt weird messaging people I don’t know…I mean, what are you supposed to write? I really don’t have an interest in following people I don’t know, and couldn’t find many people I do know, so I think that negatively affected my opinion of Twitter a lot.
For assignment 3 I decided to write about the death penalty. I got 12 comments, which was pretty average in comparison to the rest of the class. When choosing a topic I tryed to pick something that was a blatantly controversial topic, something I know is a very divided issue. For this reason I think I made a good choice, but I think I could’ve made it more controversial. and thus gotten more comments.
This Swine Flu thing is really freaking me out…there have been 140 cases found in the U.S….and two people at Amherst College may have it! It hasn’t been confirmed, but they are calling them “probable cases”. In the article in the Collegian they’re telling us to take precautions…go to the doctor if you’re sick, wash your hands, etc. This seems pretty serious though…I kind of feel like UMASS should be a little more worried, now that the virus has been reported in our town. An article on the Boston Globe website says that most of the cases in the U.S. have been mild and haven’t required a doctors care, which makes me feel a little better. But then it goes on to say:
The World Health Organization is warning of an imminent pandemic because scientists cannot predict what a brand-new virus might do.
This is really scary and I think it should be taken seriously at UMASS. My concern is that the campus and everyone on it are continuing to run regularly, and I think with this scare it should be closed and student should be laying low.
In the past week there was a great three-part feature in the Daily Collegian, Prepared to go down with the ship. The Boston Globe was given a 30 day deadline by its owner, The New York Times Co, to cut $20 million, or else it would be shut down. The 30 day deadline ended today. Throughout the articles the seriousness of the threat is questioned a lot, and I’ve been unable to find out what the final outcome is.
As the country’s 14th largest paper, The Boston Globe – which is owned by The New York Times Co. – lost a reported $50 million in 2008 and is on track to lose $85 million more this year. If it closes shop, which the Times Co. has threatened to do, it will be the largest paper to do so.
This is really scary to hear if you’re a journalism major, like most of the people in our class are! The huge papers in the U.S. are starting to fail…it’s really looking bad for the industry.
It being Earth Day today, I thought I’d write about a local program I think everyone should support. CISA, or Community Involved in Sustaining Agriculture, created an extremely successful public awareness and marketing campaign in 1999 called ‘Be a Local Hero, Buy Locally Grown’. As the website explains, the campaign operates out of the Pioneer Valley, right in our own back yard! The campaigns mission is to connect farms and communities, and to “raise awareness and sales of locally grown farm products.”
Here at UMASS, we live in an amazing agricultural community. I encourage everyone to go check out the local farms stands, they’re literally everywhere around here! The produce is so much tastier than anything you’ll find at Stop and Shop, and you’ll be helping a good cause at the same time.
I liked this project. Taking time to give my opinion on everything that interests me is fun! The things that attracted me first, and ultimately were my favorite comments, were on things like music, tv shows, YouTube videos, and facebook comments. Basically, things I can connect with personally were the funnest to comment on. I also commented on a couple of news stories, which were fullflling in a different way.
There were two points from this reading that particularly stuck out to me. One is the relation between journalists and talk radio hosts. The other is the intensity and intricacy of being a radio host.
As a journalism major, I’ve heard many times the criticisms of American journalism. Resposibility to the truth, avoiding propaganda or misinformation, and staying objective are all very important aspects of journalism. Many people put these pressures on commercial talk radio hosts. As I learned from the reading, however, these criticisms are really invalid.
They are the sort of criticisms one might make of, say, a journalist, someone whose job description includes being responsible about what he says in public. And KFI’s John Ziegler is not a journalist—he is an entertainer. Or maybe it’s better to say that he is part of a peculiar, modern, and very popular type of news industry, one that manages to enjoy the authority and influence of journalism without the stodgy constraints of fairness, objectivity, and responsibility that make trying to tell the truth such a drag for everyone involved.
This part of the reading made it clear that talk radio hosts can discuss their opinions as well as the hard facts. I guess people shouldn’t expect radio hosts to be journalists- it’s the same concept as when many young Americans look towards Jon Stewart as their main news source. Although his show discusses politics, it’s a comedic show meant purely for entertainment. Athough talk radio often discusses important issue, it isn’t meant to be ones main source of news, but instead an informative form of entertainment.