Monday, November 3, 2008

Hey guys, All the best for your exams!

Friday, October 24, 2008

Coming from a totally illiterate internet background I dreaded the thought of JMS1’s term four blogging course with a passion!

The first big ‘plunge’ was admitting to my group my inability. This was received better than I had hoped with encouragement and “don’t worries, you’ll learn!” This goes for all of our group meetings which were really “chilled” using a combination of people’s ideas and views of the blog. With that out of the way I could now learn to start ‘swimming’.

I ‘dived’ straight in, forgetting my ‘buoyancy bands’ – for I had no g-mail address. After a quick addendum I commenced, contributing (or trying to) to my blog. Have you found that you never learn from some mistakes? – well in this instance I forgot all past experience and leaped into the ‘deep end’ where I ‘drowned’ two hours of precious time attempting to copy and post a document from Word. The following day in the lecture I was reluctantly lead to the ‘steps’ where I was told to use Word Pad.

It was with great joy that I completed my first ‘length with out putting my feet down’ in managing to post a picture on our blog! Our blog was aptly themed based on the television programme Survivor, for I was actively trying to survive, chocking, spluttering and unintentionally swallowing gallons of ‘chlorinated water’ in my attempt to survive blogging.

Our intention was to provide a survival package in the form of a blog for next years first year Rhodents. This narrowed down our story horizons yet it provided a much needed ‘refinement of one’s style’. It caused us to physically look about us and reflect on the past year, one’s emotions, expectations, bathos’ and in what areas we have grown or fallen short. Looking back, I appreciate that we were confined to our experiences this year for it called for an analysis of how we had found our first year of university. This was my only course that encouraged one to look back on progression, which was very encouraging.

Our blog genre – being survival – was very open ended. This was convenient especially due to the ranging assignments which we were given. The only ‘stroke in which I was restrained’ which I found frustrating was that one always had to provide an answer, or a way to survive a particular experience or aspect of first year. There have been many first years who have left Rhodes which would have been a great story idea, yet I was unable to fulfil this as I would have had to turn it in to an anti-survival piece- going against our genre. Our audience also had to be kept in mind, in view that they were not yet at Rhodes and therefore would not know the jargon which Rhodents use in connection to one another.

Continuing with the parallel to swimming my ‘gold medal at the Olympics’ would be to specialize in photography. The blog entitled me to use photographs and also contained a few lectures on the basics. Blogging confirmed that images can convey a lot more than a written piece, while often sticks in the viewers memory for a longer time. The blogging course allowed one to reach an audience by different means, and thus enabled a larger audience. This brought in an aspect which I had never before had to deal with, that of ethics. Because my essays were in the public sphere I had to scrutinize them in regards to ethics. When evaluating the course on a scale from one to ten I would rate seven in regards to blogging allowing me to grow towards my personal and professional goals.
There is a conflicting debate of whether journalism is blogging or not. In order to understand the debate one has to define journalism, and it is in the definition where people differ. I tend to follow Dan Gilmore seeing blogging in an optimistic light, viewing blogging as an already budding media network, yet it does not fit to the traditional norms of journalism.
A valid point used in contradiction to the statement of blogging being a form of journalism is the availability that anyone can post things. Because of this, information can often be faulty with no previous research being done on the topic. Personally, in regards to research on my blog, because most of the pieces were opinionated one did not have to do research, but what little research I did was interviews or across the internet. This made me aware of the ease which one can make up sources, information and statistics.
My motivation gleaned from this course can physically be seen at in my own fun blog. Looking back over this term I can safely claim a ‘blog surfer certificate!’
Hey, I’m doing a first year blogging course in journalism at Rhodes University in South Africa. I was interested to see that we had both blogged about our residence food, yip we all share the same concerns millions of sea miles apart! As an exercise we have been asked to market our blogs…so why don’t you check out my article on my res food?

Thursday, October 23, 2008

It's not all about the sex, love.

Hi there Starfish,
I really enjoyed reading your post about first-year relationships. You are right about a lot of the stuff you said. Some girls do not realize that there are guys out there who are only interested in going all the way. Such guys think that because they are at university, they have to get as many notches on their belts as possible. I am truly glad that you didn’t give in to that promiscuous wannabe, presumably misogynistic asshole who tried to pull you into the sack. My word, if he lied about his father’s death just to get that much closer to sleeping with you, how low would this guy go? There really are too many nice girls at Rhodes who are taken advantage of by guys who just want to ‘get in, get off, and get out’ – excuse the expression.
However, you must be careful not to over-generalize. I have been in a stable relationship with my girlfriend for 10 months now. Clearly this first year relationship is working. People, especially ‘victim girls’, need to be aware of who they allow into their lives… and into their beds. Although, whatever mistakes such people make, like if they do unfortunately get taken advantage of by a sexual-predator of a male, you must realize that they will almost certainly get back up on their feet afterwards. They will also be stronger people for it; and they will learn to not be so easily tricked by assholes like your ex-friend.

What are you doing at Rhodes?

To "Lord Harold III" in his post First Year Defined:

It’s quite obvious that you’re one of those who are content with mediocrity – all you need is “that 50% that gets you through” – your post appears to have been written at the last minute without checking your spelling and grammar (or even something as simple as a line break). Maybe you don’t know that “than” is spelled with an “a”, not an “e”. You must’ve missed that lecture on style because lectures are “unnecessary”, right? Also, there is no way you can say that 200 students in a lecture are hungover if you don’t even attend the lectures. Perhaps you did this assignment a few minutes before the deadline as you stumbled home from an occasion of “drunken debauchery” which is apparently natural. How can you say “truth is…” and then say that you can “skip” first year? That’s not the truth – it’s your opinion. Sadly it is people like you that give Rhodes students a bad name… you know, there are some of us that are here to get degrees, not just get drunk and this doesn’t make us friendless losers.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Only First Year Females?? Likely to contract AIDS????

In response to the title itself in where strawberries states that first year females are more likely to contract HIV/AIDS at Rhodes sounds absurdly sexist. What decent evidence is there that first year males are not in the very same predicament? They also engage in sex. In this case I feel that the spreading of AIDS has absolutely nothing to do with age, gender or whether one is first, second, third or forth year. It solely depends on the decisions one chooses to take on a night out. Whether one is in a state of drunken rebel or even sanely sober, how you choose to spend your night and with whom is the only thing of importance because AIDS comes in any shoes size. First years could also likely have AIDS already putting senior students at risk if they decide to engage in intercourse. Think about this rather than singling the situation out in a gender threatening style or even between seniors and juniors.

Reply to opinion piece

Hey girl, I think you rock, and it isn’t my own Zimbabwean pride. What dictates is the fact that you stick to your beliefs, in your anecdote of your escapade to Port Elizabeth. This causes your reader to admire you while developing Aristotle’s rhetoric division ‘epidentic’ while backing it with ethos mode of proof. I totally agree with your forceful argument, why should Rhodents be characterized or, quite frankly, boxed in the degree labeled the “biggest boozes ever?” As a fellow Rhodent I can see no reason why any one would want to be proudly categorized like this? I view the question of ‘Rhodent citizenship’ in the same light as how you distinguish a specific nationality, is it the country you are born in, the passport you hold or where your ancestors originated from? I think each person has to decide for themselves. And just to give you encouragement; I don’t drink myself dizzy, runabout in overalls in the rain or any of the other crazy things one hears classifies you yet I proudly believe I am a Rhodent!

Monday, October 20, 2008

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