Week 12: Community Guidelines

Since, the beginning I have wanted my website to be a place where my content and online persona would basically be very true to who I am in real life. I wanted it to be a place where I can post my writing stuff without judgment and without worry. That is also the type of community I want to create. The type of community that helps each other, gives advice, gives feedback, and is just a place to be your true inner self.

Over the past couple of weeks (more like months, but let’s go with weeks) I have been creating, developing, and improving my website and my content to fully show my online persona, both my website and my creator personas, as well as look further into my audience and other key aspects of my website. Thinking about all that made me realize that I should probably create some community guidelines and figure out ways to implement them as well (even if I don’t actually have a community).

Alright, let’s do this! First things first, the community guidelines for my website. Let’s get this thing started, the community guidelines for my website are basically like any other guidelines that people with any basic human decency already follow. These basic guidelines include the usual… 

  1. Treat others how you want to be treated (I know it is cliche, but it is important)
  2. Be respectful of other people and their opinions
  3. Communicate with kindness
  4. Be polite
  5. Do not post personal information
  6. Report anything that is rude, harmful, disrespectful, etc.
  7. Be mindful of your behaviour on the website and toward others
  8. Treat everyone equally
  9. Do not share other peoples’ stuff without their permission
  10. Remember to express yourselves (in ways that do not harm others)

I personally believe that the best way to implement these (extremely basic and common) guidelines would be to obviously set an example and follow them perfectly to the very last letter. Another way to implement them would be to keep an eye out to see how my (non-existent) community interacts on my website and take action accordingly if someone were to go against the community guidelines.

I guess those are my very simple community guidelines that should be extremely easy to follow! Always remember that this website was created by a weirdo (me), so that I could finally have a place to be free to post my type of writing content and I want to keep it that way!

Sign that says good vibes only

Week 11: Incorporating Transmedia

I believe it is important to incorporate and integrate transmedia into whatever you are posting and where ever you are posting stuff. This can be done over any different combinations of media whether that be video games, blog posts, movies, TV shows, radio, or advertisements.

The best way for a website owner like myself to incorporate transmedia would be to use different social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. I plan to use social media platforms like the ones I just listed because I already know how to use them, I am familiar with working the platforms, and it would be fairly easy for me to establish an online presence as Midnight Stories and as AKC.

The most logical approach according to me for me would be to post mini segments of my posts to my social media platforms and link my website because that would give my audience a general feel of my content and if they are interested, then they could visit my website through the link in my profile. Another thing that I could do is ask my audience on those social media platforms what type of content they prefer me to post about as well as what they would like to see more on my website and maybe have some polls about what I should write about for my next post.

I would mainly focus on Instagram because more people use Instagram rather than FaceBook to get their information and inspiration as well as find accounts that contain stuff that they find interesting and endearing. The reason that Twitter would not be my main social media platform is because currently, it seems like Twitter is going through a rough patch and the focus is mostly on that rather than other things like stuff that is happening in the world.

In the end, I think Instagram would be my best bet to grow my audience as well as get my website and online persona out into the world, but the more the merrier, so I would also be posting on FaceBook and Twitter to get more traffic to my website.

Different app icons

Week 10: Rabbit Holes

Rabbit holes, after rabbit holes, after rabbit holes, so many rabbit holes that I have no idea where I should begin. Everyone falls down a rabbit hole once or twice… or thrice (for some of us that is a daily occurrence). Rabbit holes sometimes seem like never-ending spirals that we sometimes fall down because we were looking for something specific and like five hours later, we realize we have no idea what we are doing and how we ended up in that position.

Rabbit holes are a blessing and a curse. Rabbit holes are a great way to keep up with modern trends, and get your name and online persona out into the world of the internet, also you can get inspiration for crafts and your own posts from the deepest parts of the internet. However, it is essential to not forget the best part of getting lost in rabbit holes which is that IT IS SO MUCH FUN!

Getting lost in rabbit holes is an absolute blast because, in the beginning, you are looking for a recipe on how to perfectly cook scrambled eggs and the next thing you know, you are trying to figure out why elephants are grey. I honestly love escaping into the depths of rabbit holes because it is so easy to get lost and learn new things, and my personal favourite reason would be that you get to kill some free time that you did not know what to spend doing.

However, every coin has two sides and the other side of rabbit holes is an absolute curse. I know I mentioned that I love wasting my time surfing the web for random nonsense as well as random knowledge, but that is also the disadvantage of rabbit holes. Rabbit holes are never ending spirals of articles after articles after articles. Most of the time I will have stuff to do and tasks to make off my checklist, but instead, I end up sitting on the couch and surfing the web for no reason and getting sucked into a rabbit hole that I would rather not escape.

No matter what you think of rabbit holes, they are a part of many peoples’ everyday lives and there is not much we can do. Sure we can limit our internet usage, but I would rather figure out the answers to random questions than get boring chores done. I guess that’s just my opinion!

Rabbit sitting on grass

Week 9: Google Analytics

Analytics services are such valuable tools for content creators. Google Analytics is a web analytics service that collects data from your website and provides the owner of the website with statics as well as helps them out with how to get more people to their website by providing the person with analytical tools. I also use Google Analytics for these reasons, but that does not mean that I like this service.

Having a service that collects statics and gives you helpful analytics tools that you can use is very helpful especially if you want to grow your audience. Google Analytics looks at what your audience looks at when they come to your website, how long they stay on your site, as well as many other things. By knowing these things about your audience, you can create and share your content in ways that it will reach more people and draw in a larger crowd to your website.

Google Analytics is for sure a nice service, but nice does not mean that it knows how to cooperate. When I first made an account, it seemed easy enough (a little too easy, but I didn’t question it), but everything after just felt like it was going horribly wrong. I knew I should have been suspicious of the setup being extremely easy because everything after is just one giant problem that I have no idea how to fix. One of which includes the fact that I am not able to see my statics in WordPress, but instead I have to login into Google Analytics by opening another tab just to see the statics that it gathered. I guess that’s fine, but sort of ruins the convenience of having a Google Analytics tab on the back end of my website.

As much as Google Analytics helps people with growing their websites, it also is absolutely a nightmare to use, at least for me it is. Google Analytics helps with all sorts of things, but I just wish it was easier to use and was more cooperative because the number of times that I have wanted to throw my laptop out of a window is so high, but if Google Analytics agreed to work with me instead of against, then my life would be much easier. However, I can’t be mad at Google Analytics for not cooperating; it is just an analytics service.

A laptop showing analytics data

Week 8: AI Art

Painting, sketching, animating, and drawing, both traditionally and digitally, are all different mediums of art. Art can be anything you want it to be. Music, dance, literature, clay, and anything else you can think of can be counted as art.

Art is usually classified as a creative process done by humans, but can robots do art? Nowadays, since everything is online and many tasks are completed by robots rather than humans, so the question that comes to mind is… can AI do art? To answer this question, first, we need to find a more broad definition of what art is. Art is a representation of what we feel and what to express in a creative way. 

Artificial intelligence or more commonly known as AI are systems and machines that basically mimic the knowledge and performance of humans. They gather information on certain topics and base their actions according to their research and programming. AI can also display behaviours that are similar to humans and they are also capable of learning, planning, reasoning, and creativity.

Taking into consideration that artificial intelligence is capable of creativity, then the answer to the question is that yes, AI can do art. Now that we have established that AI can do art, it begs the question, can AI art be classified as art?

AI art is a two-sided coin as there are people who think it is not art and there are people who think it is art. The people who do not count AI art as art because people think it is cheating to create art using a machine as it is not the skill of an artist, but the work of a programmed machine. While on the hand, the people who do count AI art as art think this way because it is a form of expression and represents society.

Personally, I do believe that AI art is art because it does not matter whether the art piece was created by a human or a machine, it still represents something, provokes emotions, and it is impactful. The AI art coin is always being flipped and there will always be people who agree and disagree with the existence of art made by artificial intelligence.

Human looking robot sitting on a bench reading a book

Week 7: Fake News

Fakes, lies, cheats, and scams are everywhere, especially in this day and age. At this point, it feels like that no matter where we look, there is nothing on the internet that we can trust. What is there left to trust, when all we are ever told to do is take everything with a grain of salt.

In these modern times, we all have to keep our guard up, so that we aren’t exposed to fake news, videos, pics, or whatever else can be faked. At this point, everything can be faked and we just have to accept that this is the world we live in. We could try to avoid all the lies and scams, but somehow we are going to get some sort of fake news thrown at us whether we like it or not. 

Trusting anything can be quite difficult especially when you don’t trust anyone very easily, but now not only do we have to keep an eye on people who seem suspicious, but also news articles and videos that seem suspicious. It is basically impossible to trust anything when you know that what you are looking at could potentially be fake and the only way to figure out if you are getting any real news is to do an extensive amount of research which just seems boring in general.

Most people, myself included, don’t really want to do a crazy amount of research on a single news article that we saw just to make sure that it’s the real deal. Due to this, so much news gets ignored by the public because they can’t tell if it’s real or fake. So, the less people that read the news, the less people the news article reaches, which in the end just leads to society being not informed and unaware of what is going on around them.

The only way to not spread false news is to do research, although it would be great if fake news didn’t exist in general. Unfortunately, this is the world we live in and this world includes fake news.

Person sitting and reading a newspaper that is on fire

Week 6: Website Design Review

BCSPCA website

Website link: https://spca.bc.ca

For this week, I had to do a website review of a website that I visit often. So, I decided to do a website review of the BCSPCA’s website because I needed to gather some research on them for an assignment that I am working on for another class.

The design of the BCSPCA website has simple colours with a simple theme which just makes their mission and programs more eye-catching. Having a minimalistic feel to their website definitely benefits them as there is nothing distracting the audience from what they are looking at on the website. Since, the website is quite simple, it doesn’t distract from their main purpose. Right away when you enter the website, you can see all that is offered and navigate through very easily.

The structure of their website is pretty organized because when you land on their website, it is easy to find their menu tab, socials, and all their different pages and what is on each page. The website is also very consistent, since they keep to what their theme is as well as what they want their audience to know is very obvious and plain to see.

The customizations they made to their website are very on theme and seasonal as currently, they are advertising their Christmas advent calendar with animal puns and cuteness. Having all their social media platforms on the side, a search engine at the top, and an animal helpline at the very top of their page makes their website homepage quick to navigate.

However, no matter how many good points something has, there is always something that could be improved. I think it would be best if they could add an accessibility tab, so that anyone and everyone can use their website without any difficulties. Another thing that would be helpful is making their mission page more clear and easier to find as currently, it is quite difficult to navigate to the home page or to their goals page, doing this would help them and their audience because the audience will be able to find out more about the organization and what they hope to achieve. 

Despite the parts where they could change, improve, or develop their website more, the BCSPCA has a wonderful website that is still very useful, welcoming, and friendly. Their website has interesting stories and is full of adorable animals on every page.

Week 5: Editors

Editing is quite a long process and editors have tons to fix in different medias which can include photography, audio, film, written work, or visual pieces. Humans are bound to make mistakes, it is in our nature which is why editors are so important. They make sure that mistakes that people make are fixed before the creator’s work is shown to the public, However, one cannot depend on just going through the editing process once with just one editor because there is a high chance, even though it is their job, the editor missed something. So, you would need to go over your work again after each editing cycle and then, send it in for editing once again; it is important to repeat this process until you feel your work is ready to be shown to the world.

Editors are people who look over other people’s work and see if their work is ready to be sent out to the public or if it needs to be fixed up and redone. Editors make sure that the project they are reviewing is perfect through proofreading, research, and just editing in general. 

There are many different types of editors, each with their very own unique job within the editing process. These types of editors can include copy editors which identify grammar issues, development editors which look at the content’s structure, substantive editors which look into clarity, and finally, proofreaders who look into formatting. All these types of editors are important to make a piece of work ready to be seen by the public.

Editors work hard trying to make sure nothing out of the ordinary gets past them, but there is still a chance that they don’t catch all the mistakes. This is why the editing process can take a while and why the project might need to be reviewed multiple times. Editors not only do they need to make sure that the project is mistake-free, but they also need to make sure to respect the author and their voice.

Desk with electronics on it

Week 4: My Audience

An audience is a group of people that view your work or the stuff you show to the world. An audience is something I have not thought about for my website yet. However, I will figure this out just like how I figured out how to create and run a website (which was definitely a roller coaster, so I think that this will be much easier… hopefully I am right)!

Honestly, I have not imagined who my audience is until right now, but hey, no better time than the present. Alright, let’s start from the beginning! When I was first planning out my website, the purpose was to try to get my stories to people who wanted to read a small little something to either distract them, calm them, or just read little adventure for the fun of it. So, my audience could technically be anyone, but I’m going to try to narrow this down!

I think my main audience would be people who love reading, editing, or just creative people in general because, throughout all my assignments, stories, and poems, there was also some art in one way or another. So, as of right now, my audience is all the people who love to create stories as well as read stories because this is Midnight Stories and this is where I throw my work together so that anyone can enjoy it!

So, now that I have figured out my audience it will definitely be like a hundred times easier to cater to them as well as keep the identity of my website truly mine without the influence of having to worry about what every single person in the universe will think of my little website.

Going through this process has definitely made me realize just how important it is to figure out your audience as well as figure out what your audience is going to want from you and your website. This website is definitely going to benefit from having figured out who my main audience is and I am so glad that I decided to figure it out in the early stages of the creation of Midnight Stories.

People crossing the road

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