Journal. 9. Authority Online

EPSON MFP imageThese questions came up naturally during and after my lecture last Tuesday: What makes someone an authority online? Is it a list of credentials from an academic institution? Is it training in a particular field? Is it a demonstration of successful projects? Recognition from peers?

The most I could say is that there is no conclusive path for us to reach the point of online authority; it is almost like individual backgrounds that could draw no conclusion about anything.

But, of course, there are five things that would definitely affect how powerful your content put out there. They are, creativity, connectivity, honesty, continuity and patience.

Brain Pickings, website hosted by Maria Popova, introduces a story about Two designers who visualize the mundane details of daily life through illustrations on postcards, and mail to each other across the Atlantic. It is true that the recapitulation of the exact beauty in daily life as ‘data’ is impossible. But, Stefanie Posavec and Giorgia Lupi managed their way to capture their moments and visualize through the most intimate tool -illustrating by hands. Looking into their work, I find myself sort of decoding some amazing mystery that is based on our daily life. Now, click here to a separate tab, scroll down to the bottom of their ‘Data’, the first week theme is ‘time’, and I can tell how they perceive the time differently through symbolic meanings. They create their own definitions to each other, and instruct how to read. Their work shows all the qualities that I have mentioned above, and perhaps a lot more than those.

How is this leads to authority online? Not everyone’s work would be heard/ published to the public, this I know, and we all know. The basis comes to how we would be able to prepare what we have before our being heard/ sharing. Again, Popva’s talk from her perspective, expressing her worries about ” Public opinion shapes journalism” and “ideas of writers and creators of content”. Different bloggers (mentioned in her talk) and her idols in journalists’ arena may probably again wake our future generation of ways leading to audience.  Take a look at this video. It illustrates the “potential of spreading a positive message through social networks”, even if we do not think we could achieve that.

Indeed, it is not as easy as it seems on the video; the fastness of increasing number of supporters does not show up after one night. We always say ‘no pain, no gain’. That is true. And, a lot of time, I believe this would mostly indicates the expenses/ costs, and other things that involve ‘money’. The article, “If Anyone Can Save the Washington Post, It’s Jeff Benzos” by Farhad Manjoo, shows both the very bottom benefit (money gain into the company) and the hopeful/ creative traits or strategies that Benzos could bring into the future market. His ‘customer first’ attitude overtime, patience about investment in the future and desire of inventing ways to sell brand could be eventually trigger mutual relationship between customers and providers.Reasonable price and honesty of products would maximize the learning ability of the audience (such as Kindle project, Google it if you wish). In print, back then, newspaper would naturally benefit from the support to generate both low & high quality content (weather & news sections). Internet changes the relationship by spreading more free content. How do we get money from the readers through more steady method? How do we as readers make the most wise choice to gain knowledge as much as we could through more trustworthy way? And, how much time and money are we all willing to put into?

As usual, I feel bad to shout out questions in the end like the last journal entry. But, it is inevitable; it just opens so many questions throughout this course. But, the point is that there is hope; there are more people who are looking forward into the future. All we could do for now, just for now, is to prepare and prepare.

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