Wednesday, 23 May 2012

Annotated Bibliography

Don't be confused by this seemingly random blog post. It's just an assessment item I had to upload to my blog.

Goode, L. (2009). Social news, citizen journalism and democracy. New Media & Society,11(8), 1287-1305. doi:10.1177/1461444809341393 Retrieved from

Doctor Look Goode, professor and Film and Television studies at the University of Auckland, brings expertise and years of study to this academic piece on citizen journalism
and social news. Goode in this journal article, broadly analyses the topic of social media and how it affects journalism. From the beginning of the journal article, Goode argues that social media is currently influencing journalism, and therefore society. Goode proposes that social media, and citizen journalists who come from social media, can radically affect the amount of form of content available online. This interactivity with the news means that social media allows for a more democratic process of news delivery. The author relies on other academic articles and key examples from social media adds to the points expressed in the article. The amount of academic sources on the topic of social media, citizen journalism and sociology adds creditability to the author’s opinions. Furthermore, the specific examples from social media sites such as Digg, Newsvine and Guerilla News Network proves that the authors opinions are from realistic events and stories.

Naughton, J. (2012, March 10). After Kony, could a viral video change the world? . The Gaurdian. Retrieved May 23, 2012, from

John Naughton, the author of the article, is a professor of the public understanding of technology at Open University. Naughton’s area of study brings an experienced perspective to the discussion of Kony 2012’, the most viral video of all time. Naughton begins the article by introducing the video, Kony 2012 and the statistics surrounding the phenomenon. Naughton then moves on to explain the reason for it’s successful presence online. The author explains that Kony 2012 is the result of viral dissemination, which it attained through it’s clear narrative and simple ideologies. Furthermore Naughton addresses that the narrator of Kony 2012 outlines that the audience simply has to share the video on social media sites to help. The author references academic articles and real world examples of other viral online content to good effect. The author recognizes that the role of ‘weak ties’ - links between people who otherwise would be related - as a key factor for the spreading of ‘Kony 2012’, which the author identifies from an article from the American Journal of sociology. Naughton also compares Kony 2012 to other online videos such as Charlie Bit My Finger to conclude that social media is affecting how society receives and contributes to content.

Tilly, T. (2012, March 8). Hack - Kony 2012 [Audio podcast]. Retrieved from

Tom Tilly, the presenter of Triple J’s Hack explores the Kony 2012 campaign, both the content of the video and the social media surrounding it. Tilly brings on the program Australian citizens to share their opinion on the subject. The host also invites the campaign manager from Get Up Australia to discuss how the video became so viral. The campaign manager, Sam McClain, brings professional experience to the program. Sam explains that because the narrator of the video clearly explained how utilizing social media would directly affect the campaign. However, this source doesn’t have any academic value. The Hack program covers current affairs while allowing the audience to express themselves, so Tilly focuses primarily on the public’s opinion on the Kony 2012 campaign. This also has benefits because he does clearly identify the general public as the most important influence in social media. The host specifically gives insight into the general public who shared the video stated that they felt that raising awareness would at least help in some way. Most of the public who shared their opinion on the show statedFor that reason, this source has value and credibility.

Campbell, C. (Executive producer). (2012, March 8). The Project [Television program]. Melbourne, Vic: Network TEN

This source is a special edition episode of The Project. This was a unique episode broadcasted in order to completely discuss and present the Kony 2012 campaign for The Projects’s audience. During this program, Todd Sampson, CEO of Leo Burnett gives his experienced opinion of the affect social media had on Kony 2012. Sampson highlights that the general public are now able to influence society and political landscapes. Sampson states that people who are online and up to date with social media are now ‘individual broadcasters’ when sharing and producing content online. However, Sampson’s opinion is not academic or referenced, he uses his professional experience and personal research to make his opinions. The Project superfically analyses the Kony 2012 campaign for the benefit of an informing a large audience from different backgrounds. Furthermore, while Sampson does highlight social media in his analysis, he does not refer to Journalism directly. This lessens the relevance of this source to the overall subject of this essay.

Tuesday, 15 May 2012

Ethics Reflection

The lecture on ethics was a few weeks ago, but I'm going to try and reflect on it as best as I can from memory; It was a pretty interesting lecture after all.

I wasn't prepared for how far the guest lecturer attempted find the root of morality. It didn't focus on training us to maintain a clear and unbiased perspective at all times. In the end, I listened to a lecture on whether morality is an external or internal creation.

There were some pretty big words thrown around that, even if I could remember them, I'm not going to use this blog post. I'm not going to try and articulate and explain something that I'm still trying to figure out myself. I might write about it at a later date if I do manage to figure it all out.

However, I will 'reflect' on the lecture by adding a few general sentences on the topic of ethics so I can get an acceptable grade.

In my long and challenging years as a middle class Caucasian Australian, I've noticed that some groups of people live by sets of principles that seem universal and logical. All the while, there are others who live by conflicting principles who still consider themselves to be righteous and good. Every human being is able to justify their actions, and those who choose not to suffer in regret.

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Public Media Reflection

I've always had a soft spot for public media. When I sit down in my living room, which is hardly ever, it's usually the ABC or SBS that shines from my magic moving pictures box. I actually relate to their programming, while commercial isolate me and other groups in society by solely catering to a specific demographic. I find that public media is engaging, informative and unbiased. It has it's utterly boring and confusing moments, but overall it manages to keep me coming back.

Public media normally has a charter or agenda that becomes a guide for everything the company does, from brainstorming original content to releasing it to the public. It's place within society is to offer content that major media networks won't.

Overall, they have a commitment to serving the public; they attempt to inform, educate and engage citizens while still entertaining. They're not required to not be commercially funded, however they usually are funded from taxpayer's dollars. I believe this is because funding from anywhere but the government could possibly lead to biased content. Even then, public media still has to keep politically neutral in order to maintain its credibility.

I watch and listen to public media for a variety of reasons: I specifically watch ABC for shows like Spicks and Specks, the Gruen Transfer, At The Movies, and international television shows; SBS for documentaries, foreign film and occasionally a large international sporting event; and I listen to Triple J for new and independent music.

I believe that public media is essential to Australian society. It's nature and purpose gives way to social inclusion. It caters for every demographic and manages to represent both domestic and international culture respectfully. Public media entertains and informs with limited funds and resources. It also has to be original in both it's content and publishing to stay ahead of commercial media.

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

Geeky Times At Supanova

This is an article I wrote for a journalism assignment. I attended Supanova with media privileges and had a great weekend. I had to write the article in third person and I was limited to 300 words. 

501st Legion posing for photos at their booth
Thousands of excited fans attended Supanova at the Gold Coast from the 20th to the 22nd of April to get their yearly dose of popular culture. 

Fans of anime, science fiction, cosplay, comic books, video games and even wrestling were able to get together, have fun and express themselves. There were panels, competitions, activities and entertainment for everyone to get involved in.

The main attraction were the celebrities. Headliners included James and Oliver Phelps, Summer Glau, Wil Wheaton and Richard Horvitz. There were a large number of writers and artists scattered over the event too. Supanova allowed both the fans to meet industry legends but also discover some great up-and-comers.

Everyone strutted around buying comics, shirts and memorabilia to give back to their communities. There were only two ATM’s in the entire exhibition centre and they ran out of money in just a few hours.

People who bought a ticket just to get their hands on the latest merchandise would have missed out though. The main fun were the fans themselves. The highlights were walking around the exhibition and watching fans immerse themselves in their favorite things in the universe. The smile on attendee’s faces when they spotted someone dressed as a character or reference to their beloved film, show, game or comic was inspiring.

This was the Gold Coast's first time hosting the event and fans weren't disappointed. The venue easily capacitated every single guest, even those who wore ridiculously sized costumes.

Dota 2 First Impressions

I have been playing the Dota 2 beta for the past three days. I can without a doubt, say that Dota is the most fun but challenging game I've played in a while. I've played a lot of League of Legends, and a small amount of Heroes of Neworth, but nothing had really prepared me for it.

The first thing I noticed about Dota was that I was really bad at it. The learning curve from getting from terrible, to slightly not terrible is insane. There was no tutorial stage or anything to help me out, but luckily there's people writing guides and wikis for Dota 2.

While I was installing Dota, I looked around for a few guides online. The most useful resource was an introductory guide titled 'The Task You Are Undertaking.". I found the link to it, along with a lot of other helpful guides, in a Dota 2 general thread on 4chan. I'm really glad I decided to read up on the mechanics of the game before I started playing. The guide gave me a good idea of the gameplay fundamentals like farming, building towards the hero's attributes, and damage types.

However, all the preparation in the world wouldn't have stopped me for feeding like I did. Things like simply selecting my character were frustrating. In my first few games I kept accidentally left clicking on ally heroes and minions leaving my character standing around under the enemy tower. It was moments like that made my allies hate me to their core.

The most daunting obstacle for me is going to be learning all the characters and items. There are an insane amount of heroes each with their own active and passive abilities. Each hero has four unique abilities (and sometimes more) that they can upgrade is a fairly unrestricted order. As of right now, if I happen to run into an enemy hero in the jungle, I am completely clueless as to how fast they can stomp my face into the ground. By the time I usually figure out that they're the enemy team's fed carry, it's usually too late. 

The other mechanic that blind sided me was the shop system. I remember my first game in Heroes of Neworth; I could not navigate the shop system at all. I managed to figure out how to build items through trial and error. I'm still too scared to stray from the recommended items.

I only played a few different characters, specifically Spirit Breaker, Sven, Drow Ranger and Witch Doctor. The  guide warned me about the difficult heroes and listed the easiest heroes for beginners. My favourite here so far as Spirit Breaker and Drow Ranger.

I love Spirit Breaker because I only have to push two buttons to play him. His first ability, Charge of Darkness, allows him to charge on any visible enemy. Once he's targeted the enemy, he bolts across the map moving through any terrain and enemy until he collides and stuns the target. His Ultimate, Nether Strike, slips him into another realm appearing next to an enemy hero. His other two abilities are a passive and an aura. Compared to the other heroes I played, he was both the easiest and the most fun. I would definitely recommend him for a beginner because he's incredibly mobile and still a hard hitter.

Here is a list of Dota 2 guides and the Dota 2 wiki.