Author Archives: smitht09052013

Final paper and conclusion

I nearly forgot that I needed to write one final post, which is why I am writing it now. : (

I chose to write my final paper about the impact emerging media and digital technologies have on the field of technical communication. I had originally wanted to write my paper on perceived privacy in the digital work, which was partially sparked by personal interest and partially because of the blog post I directed you all to a few weeks back. Unfortunately, that topic did not fit well with out course objectives, so I needed to go back and reconsider my topic. Thankfully that realization happened before I started writing my proposal and annotated bibliography.


My daughter and I

My daughter and I

I learned several things while writing my final paper. First. I really need to procrastinate less. I really should’ve started working on this paper a month ago. With a wife also in grad school, having a 15 month old little girl, and working full time, I really cannot afford to not plan ahead.

Second, 15-20 pages doesn’t seem like a lot, but it is more difficult to write that much when my usual writing is providing direction. Most of my work involves rewriting instructions to be as clear as possible and in as few words as possible. Aside from that, I really do very little writing anymore. Writers block set in several times, and I needed to step away to try to refocus.

Third, I really do enjoy the work that I do, and I take pride in it. I’ve really enjoyed the courses I have taken so far, and each semester seems to build on foundation laid by the previous semester. Also, I usually find textbook reading tedious, but I enjoyed our textbook selection from this semester, even though I frequently disagreed with Qualman.

Finally, while I did not fully enjoy the process of writing this final paper (entirely my own fault), I did enjoy the research portion. I read several articles and websites that were interesting, but unfortunately did not contain information that I could use in my paper. I also developed a new perspective on Spilka’s book, which I found to be a very valuable resource for my paper. I also found myself do the same sort of things I was writing about, such as checking my phone frequently, or randomly surfing the web when I should’ve been working. I was hoping someone would call or text me, but that was unlikely since my wife was at home.

From this course, I learned that I am a late adopter of new technology and that is a decision I am happy with. I feel relieved that I am not like the people that Turkle described in Always On. I still have the ability to unplug each day, despite being a salary employee. I am not expected to be available and working all the time, and my emails are not important or numerous enough for me to spend my own time keeping up with them.

I really enjoyed getting to know all of you this semester, and hopefully I will have more courses with you in the future. Have a great winter break and happy holidays!


Privacy and illusions of anonymity

retrieved from

retrieved from

This week’s reading by Paine Schofield and Joinson about privacy gave me a lot of information to think over. Even though their writings occurred in the 1960’s and 70’s, their definitions are still very relent in today’s digital age. Westin defined privacy as “the claim of individuals, groups, or institutions to determine for themselves when, how and to what extent information about them is communicated to others”. Altman defined privacy as “the selective control of access to the self”. In most cases, unless someone is a celebrity or politician, they decide their own level of privacy or access to the self.

The Paine Schofield and Joinson reading also shared the ideas of Ingham, who stated that “man, we are repeatedly told is a social animal, and yet he constantly seeks to achieve a state of privacy”. I found this an interesting idea, but it does work with the ideas of Westin and Altman described above. Each person defines their own level of desired privacy. Some people choose to live very private lives. These people choose to share limited information online, and restrict it only to those they choose. These would also be the celebrities that we almost never hear about, that choose a life of discretion rather than embracing the spotlight that would normally follow them.

In a past reading, Qualman introduced the term “glass house generation”, which described how some people choose to live out their lives online. These people allow more access to themselves in the online world through social network sites, blogs, and also vlogs , and they share all sorts of personal information and opinions. Some feel that they can share a lot of information because they still maintain a level of anonymity, and some don’t seem to care. They feel they care share whatever they want and don’t consider the repercussions.

Ingham indicates that there may be costs for those who are unable to achieve their desired level of privacy, but I think it goes beyond that. Some individuals who choose to live at their desired level of online privacy may experience costs such as having that level of privacy breached. They may leave only a breadcrumb trail of information around on the internet, but there are individuals who are bloodhounds for that sort of information. With the proper motivation, they will scour the internet using various tools to seek out the information they desire, and the results can make people feel much more vulnerable than they expected. Anonymity online only works if you never disclose enough information to easily identify you, or if the information you do disclose doesn’t help to identify you.

I’ve been casually following the Kickstarter campaign for a board game called Shadows of Brimstone. I won’t go too deep into the short history of the game, but basically overall price, backer levels, and general issues with crowd-funding has caused this to become a controversial Kickstarter campaign. There are many strong opinions, and many have voiced their frustrations. I stumbled on this blog entry a few days ago and found it fitting with this week’s readings. I did not see the original post, but this amended post tells a great deal. The blog author shared an opinion someone didn’t agree with. That individual decided to track him down using bits of information, and then sent the author a creepy email directed at him and his fiancée. The author felt understandably vulnerable, because his illusion of anonymity and security had been shaken.

I find the above situation despicable, but it does serve as an example to the rest of us. Be careful what information you choose to share, because someday, someone may try to track you down. Personally, I would prefer it if they either came up empty, or ended up chasing their tail looking for a trail that has either long gone cold, or one that never existed in the first place.

Digital Literacy across cultures

I know that I’ve mentioned this example before in reference to global culture, but it directly relates to this week’s reading about digital literacy across cultures. I was fortunate to be part of a project that had stakeholders in the Midwest, Ireland, and India. The main purpose was to create a system and interface that would search and analyze… specific data. My role was to create a user-guide to help people utilize the system. There were several obstacles that needed to be resolved during my involvement in the project.

I worked closely with the primary tester, and she would use the system, try to stress it, and also validate the results of each test search. She logged all issues on the project SharePoint site. She recalled early in the project that the form originally classified the issues as defects, but that needed to be changed. The India team viewed the term defects as pointing blame. They would spend days researching whether the issue was in fact a defect, or if it was a design feature that was simply not working correctly. By reclassifying it as an issue, we eliminated the idea of blame. This allowed them to spend their time fixing the issue rather than researching who was at fault.

There were status calls twice a week, which allowed the project manager to collect status updates from each area, and also helped clarify what each person’s role was and the expectations for the week. I’m not sure if these calls were done for convenience, accountability, or because of deeper cultural reasons like Thatcher described in this week’s reading. I do know that it seemed to help people stay on task and understand their responsibilities.

We also encountered issues with the design and layout of the program. I found it difficult to use because most of the fields you entered data into or selected criteria from were not labeled. The lead tester had the same complaints, but was told that it was too late to make those kinds of changes. Part of the job of the user guide was to explain how to use the system, and part was to help American and European users overcome the awkward and confusing layout and interface. I wish I knew if it was a cultural difference, or if it was just a poorly designed interface.

I guess I’ve always taken general usability for granted, but this week’s readings by Thatcher and Blakeslee have made me realize that convenient usability is a factor of our cultural experiences, and that a different culture would have different experiences to draw from. What seems logical and convenient to me might seem confusing or awkward to someone from another culture. The areas of the internet that I frequent seem to be tailored to an American, or at least and English speaking user, but I would really be interested in seeing the potential layout and organizational difference of a website designed with a different culture in mind.

Ishii’s research about mobile phone usage was very interesting. It seemed like a well-done study, and it is one that I would appreciate seeing carried out again. He might be able to find stronger correlations today than he was able to when the study was originally carried out. I think he would find the mobile phone usage breakdown would still be similar between home, work, and away from work. Expected differences would be the level of usage for the average person, especially teenagers, and I would also predict a difference in the social skills among mobile phone users. It is easy for me to make predictions based on my own observations, but I really would like to see the research.

Culture and Community


I was aware that culture had multiple definitions, but I guess I hadn’t considered how complex the sociological definition was as compared to the straightforward biological definition. Language and the meaning of words can change and evolve over time. This can lead to very abstract definitions that are very unhelpful. In the Spilka reading, Williams provided a great summary of the meaning of culture and how it changed over time:

‘It came to mean first, “a general state or habit of the mind” … Second, it came to mean “the general state of intellectual development, in a society as a whole.” Third, it came to mean “the general body of the arts.” Fourth,  … it came to mean “a whole way of life, material, intellectual, and spiritual,”’

Culture can mean any and all of the above, which adds to the confusion. We use a word which can have several different meanings, and that meaning is dependent on the context. That creates an opportunity for a vast range or interpretations.

Community seemed more straightforward to me that it has been depicted in the reading. I can understand the desire to create a universal community that includes everyone, but that goal is not realistic. The Brufee communication model explored this option by creating a community with expectations and values that are known by all members.

The idea of insiders and outsiders of a community make sense, but it contradicts the goal of the universal community. As explained by Bernadette Longo, this would be a totality rather than a community. This is also an unlikely idea because individuals do have different values, ideals, and preferences. There are millions of people who use Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and other social media sites, but very few people use all of them. Even if those sites made controlled upgrades, there is no way that they could create an environment that would convince everyone to join and use the site.

I’ve witnessed Rheingold’s spirit of community on forums such as Boardgamegeek, 40K Forums, and Backpacker, but even those online communities are not without their problems. There are still active members who do not share in the value of community. Many put in extra effort to welcome new members and contribute to the knowledge and friendly spirit of the site, but there are others who wish to keep the exclusivity of the community, and drive away those that don’t seem to fit the feel that they have become accustomed to. My experience is that communities often begin to police themselves, both good and bad, to help control their membership. Sometimes it is driving out the disruptive forces through peer pressure, and sometimes it is driving away people that the policing force sees as annoying. Either way, few communities are truly welcoming to everyone.

Map of Online Communities

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With online communities, people have a choice about which communities they would like to be part of. They aren’t like geographic communities where you become part of one purely by proximity or location. Online communities bring people together because of similar interests or ideas. People stay a part of the community because of shared information, shared connections, or some other satisfaction gained from it. There are many reasons people stay with a forum or social media site, and each person defines and finds their own meaning.

In Spilka, Baudrillard’s characterization of postmodern as “the age of simulation… substituting signs of the real for the real itself” was a good summary of part two of the Turkel book. Postmodern has always been a term that I have struggled with. I’ve never been good with relative definitions, so saying that it follows modernism is really not helpful to me. I’ve also never been good with art and architecture descriptions. I appreciate the quote because it does describe a lot of the social interaction between individuals on social media sites. They substitute real interpersonal relationships for hollow online interactions. There can still be meaningful interactions using social media, but many are shallow and hollow shadows of the alternative.

(edit – I realised that the image I uploaded last night was not the correct one.)

Sailing in the digital world

Savage’s analogy of metis and the deployment of digital tools really struck a chord with me. I look back to summer evenings spent sailing with my dad on Lake DuBay, and I understand the point he was trying to make. The goal of sailing and of deploying digital tools isn’t to master anything; that isn’t possible. It is to be responsive to several factors that can change quickly and sometimes all at the same time. My Dad’s C-scow was a fun boat to sail, but it was a highly temperamental boat to race.

For those who may not know, scows are wide and flat bottomed sailboats. They are slow when sailed flat, but they become much faster when they are leaned up on edge. The waterline changes from wide and flat to very narrow and long, which drastically reduces the surface in contact with the water. When everything is going well, it is fast and exciting. Racing the boat is a matter of weighing risk and reacting quickly. You can always lean the boat less and sail it less aggressively, which will allow for more time to respond to changing conditions. Or, you can lean it far, sail very quickly, and sacrifice some of your time to react to changing conditions.

What does all of that have to do with deploying digital tools? Some of it is preparation, making sure you have done the testing needed to make sure everything works and understand how it works. Next, you need to have a team or crew that you can trust to handle their job if anything changes. The final portion is learning to pay attention to the signs in front of you. There are a lot of variables in both that can change, so paying close attention to everything around you is key to reacting to those changes. If you don’t notice a problem, it is unlikely that you will react soon enough or in the right way to be useful.

Each of us must exercise critical digital literacy to succeed in this ever changing digital world. We must understand more than just the context of our work. We must also have a strong grasp of the tools available to us and how best to use them. This was part of what prompted our switch over to HTML based documentation. The majority of employees work from home, so information needs to be accessible and able to be retrieved quickly. They also frequently have several programs open at once. HTML files are much smaller sized, and they open from a browser rather than Microsoft Word. This reduces the resources needed to open access and use the documentation.

The readings discussed single sourcing, which is another thing my team is working toward. We have established common wording guides to for frequently used portions of text or steps in processes that are program specific. This helps save time and drive consistency throughout our documentation, which can be difficult with eight different writers sharing the workload. We also have editors who help raise the quality of the documents and unify the voice.

Twitter and intrusive marketing

This week’s readings have reinforced that I am a late adopter. Both heavily discuss the benefits and uses of Twitter, a product that I am still leery of using. I don’t have any particular issue with Twitter; I just have no desire to use it. TV, especially reality TV has really embraced Twitter, and they definitely use it to collect user feedback. The immediate feedback is nice for companies, but I personally find it distracting.

In this week’s reading, Qualman introduced a term called “socialommerce”. Essentially, this is using collected information from social networks to provide a form of reviews or recommendations for products. The examples were interesting, but I feel like there are issues. I have a vast respect for reviewers, but not all people make good reviewers. Steve, in the examples, is choosing to trust the opinions of his friends to make pretty substantial decisions, rather than take some time to do additional research on the other options. Referrals are great, but they should accompany research rather than being blindly followed to save time.

Maybe I’m alone in this, but I appreciate my privacy when it comes to online usage. I like to provide reviews to some products, but I would rather put that review up on a related forum rather than connect it to my Facebook profile. I choose not to live my life online through my Facebook page, and I don’t want other people to know my buying history. It isn’t anyone else’s business how much camping equipment I buy each year, or what movies I have purchased. I’m already aware that web pages tailor their banner ads based on the cookies of recently visited sites, and that is intrusive enough to me. I certainly don’t want to share that information with everyone on my friends list. YMMV (your mileage may vary).

Qualman’s prediction of e-books reminds me of movies from the 80’s and 90’s so riddled with product placement that it was distracting. Nonintrusive product placement makes a scene seem more realistic, but some product placement appears too obvious and makes the movie look cheesy. If you have seen Back to the Future, the original Total Recall, or Wayne’s World, you probably know what I am talking about.

It is one thing to have the main character drink from a soda can that is just barely identifiable as a Coke. It is entirely different if he places an order asking for a “crisp and delicious Coca Cola”. This is what Qualman predicts might happen to e-books. The text would feature links to products or services that the reader could click on to find out more. This already occurs in blog posts, and I hope that it doesn’t break into all digital reading. Many people use reading as a way to escape the bombardment of marketing, advertising, and social media, and it would be a shame to see that taken over as well.

Search data only tells part of the story

I understand what Qualman is getting at this week, that search data can be used for many things to make the world a better place. It does bother me that he conveniently leaves out that this information should be used with caution, since it only tells part of the story. His example of search trends between “Obama” and “McCain” before the presidential election indicates that they were searched for, but there is no information about what searchers were looking for, or when they looked at in the results. This information was introduced as valid, but potential limitations were only alluded to. 

Qualman describes a future where we might use online voting, but I have strong reservations about that. Our current voting procedures are far from perfect, but at least most involve some sort of verifiable paper trail. Online voting would do away with that safeguard. I understand the excitement and convenience factors, but we need to make sure to proceed with caution. There is already a lot of potential for voter fraud under our current methods. I would hope that we hold off until we can guarantee that each vote is correctly accounted for before we proceed.

The Death of Social Schizophrenia was interesting to me. The chapter indicates that people are better off being comfortable with who they are rather than trying to be someone they are not, but then it provides several examples of people who paid the consequences for being genuine or sharing too much on social media. That seems like a contradiction to me. Then there was another example of an organization creating false accounts to screen potential job candidates, which to me seems like a different form of social schizophrenia. He advocates being comfortable with who you are, but also exercising strong self-censorship. That is probably good advice for anyone to follow.

The section on marketing hit home for me because I studied advertising in college. I appreciate the marketing philosophy of today because of the emphasis on being upfront and honest about the product. The prevalence of social media pretty much requires this approach if companies hope to succeed. 

I’m a fan of online forums, and I have seen several companies pay the price for bad service, poor products, or false advertising. Almost no company is immune to the potential destructive power of social media. It is essential for them to operate more transparently and honestly, or they taunt the wraith of social media users.

Changes in an evergrowing sea of information

Spilka describes the change in the role of Technical Communicators from the 1970’s to the 1980’s. They originally created complex technical manuals for trained professionals, but their role changed to creating less complex documentation for novice users who less likely to develop strong computer skills. The technical writing designation also changed to Information Developer. These developers brought about more user-centered communication as well as increased system testing and design to reduce or eliminate experience level issues. This greater focus on system usability, design, and function made it much easier for users and reduced some of the need for complex documentation. The role of Technical Communicators changed again in the 1990’s. They continued to work in groups to develop documentation for users, but they also worked at the client’s location to document the specific hardware and system needs of the client. These role changes were essential due to the changing technology and information climate, but I think the increased focus toward usability testing was very important to the development of technical communication as a career and a discipline.

There were two major changes that occurred between the technical writers of the 1970’s and the 1990’s. The first involved an increase in the use of computers involved in the technical writing process. Early writers to create their drafts, but the final content would be entered into the printing software by designated people. Writers began to use computers more and more over time in the creation of technical documentation. The second change was a shift from print media to digital published media. Previously, most technical documentation was created for a printed paper format. Over time, documentation has shifted to digital based, either in PDF form, or in an HTML based format.

Qualman’s quote contrasting traditional broadcast with the internet was very interesting to me. He is quite correct with his statement. Millions of viewers tune in every Monday and Tuesday to watch The Voice, and each viewer receives the same show at the same time. Broadcast provides a blanket experience for viewers and hopes that the majority of viewers enjoy the experience.

The internet is very different from that. Millions of individuals go on the internet to a site like Facebook, but they each have a slightly different experience, based on their friends and the content they have liked in the past. Even the ads on the side of the page are different based on their current or previous browsing history. After they leave Facebook, there are a near limitless number of other sites they can visit and explore. Often times, a person can flip through the channels and find “nothing on”, but no one can make the same claim about the internet. There is always something to read or watch, but the user has to search for it.

Search engines are great for searching far and wide for information, but sometimes it is difficult to cast a broad enough net to catch what you are looking for without bringing in a lot of things you don’t want. The evolution of language can actually make things more difficult to find, because slang terminology can result in a word meaning two very different things. It also helps to know the correct name for what you are searching for.  Is some cases, you may need both to locate what you are actually looking for. I’ve recently started considering building a small boat. There are an absurd amount of boat plans and pictures of homemade wooden boats on the internet, but finding just the right one has proven to be somewhat frustrating. I know what I want to find, I believe it is an Asian inspired small fishing boat, but I’m having trouble finding out what that type of boat would be named or where to find the plans for it. So far my results have yielded a lot of the same types, so I know that I will need to try a different approach.  I may get to the point where I take what I know and use social media to try to fill in the rest. I have a couple friends that have also done boat building research, a few that have traveled to and lived in Korea, China, and Japan, and others that just seem to know a lot of random things. If I can’t find it on my own, I may need to post my question on Facebook and poll the audience.

Qualman also mentions that Google has implemented more interactive tools to use when searching that allow users to vote up or down search results. I was unaware of this feature, but I plan to use it in the future when I am presented with a link to something that makes no sense based on my search terms. I will also use it if I finally find what I am looking for on search page 3.

Social Media: It’s all in how you use it

I have to start out by saying that reading the Boyd article was strange to me because I witnessed some of the evolution of social networking sites. I guess it seemed odd to me reading the history of something that I participated in, and that still seems fairly recent to me.

I joined Facebook when it was first opened to email accounts, and I have been at least a semi active user since I joined. I also joined sites like MySpace and Live Journal, but I didn’t stay with them for very long. I definitely agree with Boyd’s classification of social network sites vs. social networking sites. Many of the successful sites are intended to maintain friendship networks that someone already has rather than expand an existing friend network. That option is still available through comments to posts, but it isn’t a main focus of the site.

Qualman brought up several points, but my experience with Facebook indicates those observations apply to some users, but sadly not all. He mentions that social media has led to a sort of preventative behavior because people recognize that their opinions and actions can have consequences when they are made public. Despite this preventative behavior factor, BuzzFeed still has lots of options when it compiles lists of racist or sexist remarks made on Twitter. A few examples of this are when Marc Anthony sang God Bless America at an MLB game, or when Miss New York was Crowned Miss America. Baron mentions that social network sites have an impact on people’s presentation of self, that individuals tailor their information and interests to display a certain appearance. I think a lot of people engage in this, but there are clearly many that are either proud of what they are, or the concept has not occurred to them.

I believe that braggadocian behavior could be a factor for some, such as posting numerous pictures of their perfect family or full albums of their trip to Europe, but I also see a lot of very mundane posts from friends about what they are watching on TV, making for dinner, drinking, bars they are headed out to, or just a general lack of motivation to do anything. He mentions a reduction in reality TV watching, and an increase in people going out and living their lives. While there may be some compelling evidence of this, I think a lot of people are still watching reality TV. With all the Twitter trending references they squeeze into shows, I would bet that a significant segment of their audience is watching the show while surfing Facebook or Twitter on their phone or computer. Those people are clearly not “going out and living their lives”.

He also provides examples of an elderly gentleman and a mother using their postings to a social network site to review their recent posts and take stock of their life. After reviewing those posts, they used it as motivation to make changes to their life. I certainly don’t think Qualman is wrong, but I think the concepts of self-censorship in social media and using social media to take stock of their life and get out and live it are lost on many people. Perhaps that is just my group of friends…

Social media’s impact on companies is very interesting to me. I definitely think that companies should use social media to put an ear to the ground and enhance customer experience. Rather than wasting time trying to hide bad experiences, they are going above and beyond to resolve those bad experiences in a public spotlight. This is a much more effective strategy because it is also good PR for them. The impact of a bad experience shared on Twitter or Facebook is much greater because of all the friends and friends-of-friends that could potentially see it.

I witnessed an interesting instance of this about a few months ago. An individual had launched a Kickstarter campaign over a year ago to release a game called The Doom that Came to Atlantic City. The campaign was a success, and everything seemed to be going fine, although with limited communication, until the bottom just fell out. The campaign creator emailed all backers and said that the game was dead in the water, and that he was working on providing backers with refunds. Unfortunately, that would take some time since he had already spent a portion of the funds on undisclosed things.

Within a week or two of that announcement, a company called Cryptozoic (which had no affiliation with the game at all) contacts the original creators of the game. They later issue an announcement that they will work with the creators of the game and release it to the backers at no additional cost. This wasn’t their problem to fix, and they could’ve easily done nothing. However, choosing to get involved how and when they did provided a massive amount of good will toward their company, and prompted many individuals to look at and then purchase some of their other products. They went from a company that many board game fans had not heard of, to a company that suddenly had a lot of buzz and positive attention.

My blogging experience, or my preference for Learning Blogs

I’ve been involved in some form of social media since I was in high school. Like many high school students at the time, I used MSN, AIM, and Yahoo messengers to communicate with friends. None of us had cellphones at the time, so that was really the best we could do without tying up the landline calling each other.
In around 2003, I joined a forum for miniature war gaming, where I became a regular contributor. It was not a blog, but it did serve as an opportunity to connect with like-minded people and to share ideas. Blogs were introduced on that site later on, but I never signed up for one. I preferred the forum format, where everyone could contribute if they wanted, but the degree of your involvement was up to you. Someone else would always be there to post something, so there was always new content to read and comment on. Many of my friends encouraged me to join MySpace or Live Journal, but I never had any interest in either of them. I think I still have a Live Journal page out there, but I wouldn’t even know how to find it anymore.
I joined Facebook when it was only available to college students. I remember the excitement that UW Eau Claire was being added to Facebook, and everyone with a campus email was registering. I had never even heard of Facebook at the time, so I didn’t really understand what it was for or why/if I would even use it. I reluctantly joined, but then barely used the site for a couple years. I almost never posted status updates. For me, it was primarily used it to keep in touch with other people and as an easy way to have updated contact information for my friends. I still use it that way for the most part.
The article, Press ‘Publish’: Start an Academic Blog by Joshua Mann, reaffirmed part of why I have never started a blog. I don’t currently have any new insights or epiphanies to share with the world on a particular subject, and I haven’t done the necessary research in any particular area to share even lesser known information. I can certainly see merit for it, but using the medium for this purpose doesn’t currently serve any need of mine. At this stage in my life and educational journey, I am very far from being an academic scholar.
Alex Reid provides a much less intimidating framework for the purpose of a blog in his article Why Blog? Searching for Writing on the Web. His article does highlight an issue I have with creating a personal blog. I currently don’t have a purpose for one. I certainly have interests, but I’ve always lacked a cohesive reason to create a platform to share that information.
I have enjoyed other people’s blogs, and have occasionally read a company’s blog for product updates, but I feel like that is only peripherally related. In that case, I am the audience, and I serve as an indicator of whether their blogging is successful or not. I never comment, mostly because I am not registered on their blogging site. I go there to visit and read, not to comment on their article. I don’t dislike blogs, but I feel like they can be a little impersonal at times.
This will be the third graduate school course that I blogged for, and I have enjoyed the experience. In this case, we’re peers working our way through the information, which allows us to share our thoughts and help each other make sense of the concepts. In a way, I feel like this is more like my past forum experiences rather than a traditional blogging experience. I look forward to blogging with all of you and learning from you.