Monday, August 22, 2016

I'm Back

"Sometimes knowing when something is not working and pivoting to something new leads to our greatest opportunities and successes." - Kristina Saffran 

Keeping up with the blogosphere is very easy now with RSS aggregator tools such as Feedly.  However, posting on a blog is another story.  I used to be a very active videoblogger about ten years ago as a graduate student.  This was in the pre-YouTube days where not everyone could post a video online and being Internet famous was not a "thing" yet.

There was a few select videobloggers that were slightly well known due to their combination of Blogger and or  Such vloggers included Josh Leo, Michael Tyas, missbhavens, Ryanne, and Bre Pettis.  Only a few of us really knew how to create vlogs and we all had our own little community, commenting on each others vlogs and meeting at Vloggercon every year or so.  This provided us the incentive to keep actively vlogging, discovering new vloggers, and following the adventures of the more seasoned ones.  At one point, one of my videos was even featured at a small New York film festival that featured interesting Internet videos.

However, the vlogging community was soon overshadowed by the giant known as YouTube and its various Internet "celebrities."  YouTube enabled everyone (and their mother) to post videos and share content.  Now, keep in mind, I don't see this as a bad occurrence necessarily. YouTube provides everyone (at least those with an Internet connection, video recording device, and a smartphone or computer) to post videos, which I see as a plus in regards to enabling access to this type of technology to everyone.

Yet, this is what I see as the moment vlogging died or at least the point where it evolved into the behemoth that it is now.  The YouTube movement was so big that our small little Internet community was washed away in one fell swoop.  These vloggers were now "gone" from our lives.  In other words, we were distracted by this new shiny product (YouTube) in the store window.  Along with their disappearance, nevertheless, something better came along.  Not only did sharing access increase for everyone via YouTube and social media, but the vloggers from our original community moved on to bigger and better projects.  Bre Pettis is now one of the biggest leaders of the Maker Movement. Michael Tyas and Josh Leo have moved on to other media work.  I now work in higher education as an assistant professor, teaching Education students about technology integration into their curriculum.  We moved on to the next project, while the next generation grabbed the torch and vlogged in better ways than anyone ever imagined.  

So back to my job as a blogger.  Now, that I am one year into my new role in higher education, I need to start blogging again.  I feel that there are insights that I can post about, but I tend to keep to myself.  I need to find time to blog and not be afraid to write.  Research writing is not the problem as this type of writing is something that I am used to as well as the type of criticism that comes along with it, but personal writing such as this blog is scary, yet necessary.  I need to open myself up to criticism on my personal thoughts.  I want to grow as a blogger and will attempt to post more frequently, not only for myself, but for the academic community.  I want to have the same passion for blogging as I did for vlogging, and now is as good as time as any to start doing so.

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