L 11 – Reflection

This week was about refining the website.

First, doing drawings every day is too much. I can’t maintain it consistently. Thus, I’ve decided to post twice a week. Hopefully, the drawings will being high quality as a result. Second, I’m renaming the posts. For example, it used to be ‘Post 15 – Punk’ and now the titles will be something like ‘Pencil Drawing – Punk’. This will give more description in the title and will be an opportunity to use keywords, hopefully increasing SEO. Third, because of the new titles I’ll change categories to organize by drawing type, not quality. This will help people how may be looking for certain types of drawings, such as ‘pencil drawings’, ‘pencil sketches’, ‘inked’, ‘digital’.

This week was the first time I tried visiting my website mobilely. It’s better than on the computer. The home page looks tight and isn’t too long. I was afraid that my posts were too short, but on mobile they’re a perfect little post. This website is definitely more for entertainment than education.

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L 10 – Reflection

This week, I started my Google AdWord campaign.

As the days go by, I see my bill get higher and that my campaign has clicks. However, I set my max bid to $3/day. On some days, I’m billed higher than that. As someone who hates investments and risks, this is making me anxious.

Clearly, I have no idea what I’m doing. I feel like I have good keywords and ads that accurately describe my site. What I hate most is that I have no way of earning money on my site aside from donations, which I’m not sure I can do without having to claim non-profit. I also don’t know how to run ads on my site for revenue. I’m guessing that I need a following for advertisers to want to run ads on my site. Overall, this site is taking a lot more start-up money than I thought it would.

Obviously, I need to do additional research, but I don’t know what will interfere with the class and what won’t. I’ve never cared about making revenue since this site is also a personal project, but I hate spending money with no way to balance it out. If anything, this class has solidified that I will not be running my own business.

YouTube Subscribing

Only recently have I started subscribing to channels on YouTube. I avoided subscribing for a long time. I didn’t want any junk mail from YouTube and I didn’t want to get hooked on another social media site. Eventually I got tired of having to type everything into the searchbar, so I finally subscribed to channels for the convenience.

So I thought, why do people subscribe? I’ve noticed that a majority of videos either start or end with a ‘please like and subscribe’ message. Interestingly, huge and famous YouTube channels don’t do this in their videos. They have intros and outros that are iconic to their channels. For example, jacksepticeye and markiplier both have millions of subscribers. They both have iconic phrases that they use in the beginning and end of their videos. They never ask viewers to ‘please like and subscribe’ and they’re doing better than the people that do ask. I feel that, for some reason, when someone asks me to like or subscribe to something, I’m much more resistant to do so. Thus, I’ll subscribe to a channel because I want to see new content, not because they asked me to. Ironically, I am much less likely to like or subscribe when videos ask me to because of how annoying it is. I hate it went videos beg for likes.

A little more information on YouTube subscribers: https://gigaom.com/2010/10/29/what-should-matter-more-on-youtube-subscribers-or-views/

L 09 – Reflection

Since Google updated some things, our assignments became out-of-date. Thus, this week was also lighter. It was a lot of thinking and not a lot of doing. Thinking about making more efficient keywords and how using Google Analytics will help us with our businesses.

Google Analytics, as straightforward as it seems, has much to offer and is very daunting. But through the discussion boards, I’ve pinpointed a few parts that I may want to focus on. One of them is the bounce rate. Bounce rate is how many people come to your site and only stay on the first page. This can tell me what my visitors are doing. If the bounce rate is high, that means that people stay on the home page, which is where daily content is posted. If there is a relatively low bounce rate, then that means people are clicking around.

Another one is duration, how long an average visit to my site is. If it’s really short, that tells me people just look ate the pictures and read little. If it’s pretty long, then people are reading what I write on my posts, perhaps commenting as well.

Overall, data doesn’t tell the whole story. Nor is it good or bad feedback. For example, most people would want low bounce rates. For my blog, it would simply tell me the behavior of my visitors. The bounce rate wouldn’t be good or bad news, it would simply be information.

Trump as President

I found out the night of the 8th. I had the NPR radio app on my phone and I got a notification. It read, “Despite all odds, Donald Trump…”, and I thought to myself No way.

You can find the article I read that night here.

As far as I knew, Hillary was ahead in the polls. In fact, many people both citizens and politicians brushed off Trump. According to the NPR article, Trump “bested 16 more experienced rivals in the primary process while spending little on traditional campaign infrastructure and relying on family members for political and media acumen.” Putting Trump’s personality and stances aside, that is an impressive accomplishment. Trump’s unorthodox ways is the reason he’s elected. As a reality TV star, Trump understood the media, people, and people’s emotions.

Despite what some people think, Trump’s goal is not to destroy America. He wants to build it up and “make it great again”. He simply has different ideas and methods on how to do that. It’s a matter of fact that he’s going to be our new president, so all we can do is make the best of it.

L 08 – Reflection

This week was slower. I tweaked my ads, shortening them and making them more active.

I also experimented with different themes for my website. I ended up not changing the theme. The current theme is a white background with black edges and white and green text. I also added a header image of character looking down into the posts. These are the characters that I’m developing to be mascots. Since my website is simple and revolves around drawings, it needs to be visual. Thus, I think a mascot of some sort boosts the site’s personality.

My site is a daily drawing blog. I’ve been uploading in the evening. Until I get more traffic and followers, then I don’t know if people will like me uploading in the evening. The website is supposed to be about helping other people, so I can’t change and improve the site until I get feedback.

It’s a little stressful to upload everyday. It feels like a school assignment to upload everyday, except I don’t get a grade for it. It feels more like a personal project that I’m actually sticking to.

Flow and Telescope of ESO

the-elder-scrolls-online-game-hd-wallpaper-1920x1200-6175ESO poster featuring three characters from the trailer. Image found here.

Elder Scrolls Online (ESO) is the latest game in the Elder Scroll series. This MMORPG has been long anticipated by many Elder Scroll fans. Even if you’ve never heard of it, you can see why it would be loved for its lore, detail, and beauty.

In the book Introduction to Media Literacy, there is are sections in Chapter 7 about electronic games, where MMORPGs are specifically mentioned. Unlike some textbooks that obviously have a bias against video games, this book describes video games spot on.

One example is that they say gamers create the story based on how they play the game. This is more true for some game genres than others. In RPGs and MMORPGs, these games are specifically designed for you to not only put your own twist on the story, but to create the character you play as. The book is also correct in that these games give players a “sense of power and a sense of wonderment.” These features particularly appeal to some players, myself included. I play almost exclusively RPG game for these features.

Not only can you customize the character you play as and change the story in RPGs and MMORPGs, but you can also choose what the objective of the game is. The game supplies you with a world, NPCs, quests, and a main storyline or two. Given this, you choose what you want to do. If you want the objective to be competition, then you find people to fight and level your character to maximum effectiveness. You can also roleplay, which is where the game is just a tool for you to pretend you are your character. Or create a character to be you and you play the game as you. You can also focus on exploration, finding all the secret locations, easter eggs, and hidden quests.

For MMORPGs, flow and telescoping are key characteristics. In the example of ESO,  the world and lore is designed to be immersive. That means it is so detailed and interesting that you are completely immersed for a time. This results in most players enjoying a deep and exciting flow. Telescoping is very important to play MMORPGs well. You can’t be isolated in the moment of the current task. You must complete you current task with the future in mind. If you don’t, the game will make sure you regret it.

In short, this section of Introduction to Media Literacy is the first academic text I’ve seen that accurately describes aspects of video games. The book isn’t for or against video games, but instead is uneditorial in its terms, observations, and descriptions.