Blogging; some of my favourites

I thought it fitting to  maybe showcase some of my favourite blogs which I frequent daily. I have stumbled upon quite a lot of blogs over the past two years or so, most while researching essays and articles for college, but some from suggestions and just having a browse online.

I like to think I have a quite diverse interest in blogs. I like some fashion ones, some music, some culture and lifestyle and some food. Here are just some of my favourites that I think are a good indication of quality citizen journalism.

Pantiblog

Panti Blog is a blog run by drag artist Panti Bliss, real  name Rory O’Neill. Panti is known as the most famous and at the top of the Dublin drag and gay scenes. She has presented both the Gay Pride celebrations and the Alternative Miss Ireland. But while you might think a drag queen’s blog is all about make-up tips and hair removal stories, think again.

Panti offers a unique look on a wide variety of things – internet memes, gay culture stories, art, political stories, homophobia, gay youth, music and general funny stuff. It’s a really interesting and often informative read as you never know what you might stumble upon. I read this blog every single day.

Good Mood Food Blog

The Good Mood Food Blog was started last year by young celebrity chef and singer, Donal Skehan. It offers a unique and delectable look at some unique and mouth-watering recipes. The blog has garnered many awards and has also been published as a successful book. The photography is wonderful, the recipes are simple and easy to follow and the website is easy to navigate. If this blog doesn’t conjure up a desire to be better in the kitchen, I don’t know what else will!

I Blog Fashion

Annmarie O’Connor is probably Ireland’s foremost fashion blogger and stylist. She has appeared in print, on radio, on television but her blog remains her truest and best media form. Her quirky styling tips, competitions and general fashion news inspire and draw you in and her journalistic style is clean-cut and simple to read. O’Connor has a flair for her blog and you can instantly see this in the way she writes and posts.

Peter Fingleton

Peter Fingleton is a student club night organiser, dj and photographer. His blog reflects the artistic side of his life and documents his many photographic endeavours. I predict that this guy will be very famous in the future and his impending success is evident already, so give his blog a look out!

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Advertising, they’re all in it for themselves

Why is RTÉ advertising it’s own products and pages?

Why is TV3 now advertising it’s own dating page and why is UTV advertising a car service?

On the other hand, BBC’s homepage has not one advert impeding on the news content.

For all the importance placed on advertising and the lucrative industry that is, why is a news website advertising it’s own products/endevours when the web user is already on their site as it is..

UTV’s advertisements stand out and are brightly-coloured which detract from the news content. TV3 also emphasises it’s adverts over news, whereas RTÉ has seemingly got the right balance between effective news display and advertising, side by side.

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NY Reader?

My day has been enlightened!

Little did I know of the major inventions and changes which are being updated on the internet. The NY Times has a fascinating new viewer for their paper, which is seemingly free!

I may be slow on the uptake but this seems revolutionary! Interactive to the max, being able to flick through a week’s papers in the archive, being able to do the infamous crossword on the comfort of your keyboard and watching videos and extras while reading your favourite columns and stories.

The Times has struck gold! This has literally amazed me and will surely start an entire new craze in online journalism. This could be the edge that tips print off the scale. Could this be the deciding factor in the uncertain future of print media. It is certainly enticing, but is it just a novelty?

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Re-design?

What links a publication and it’s website? Is it the colourful and unique way they execute their stories? Is it the iconic imagery and features? Probably not, it’s the layout.

A publication and it’s respective website have to be pretty cohesive in order to make sense. The Financial Times is probably the most extreme case, which is probably not the best to use, but it is evident.

NME magazine has recently undergone a bit of a facelift. Trading in it’s signature black and red, stand-out layout it has transformed into an artsier, black and white, simplistic layout. Much of the ‘in your face’ quality has been traded in for simplicity and modernity.

However, the website is still as jam-packed, in your face and full of the atmosphere of the old NME. Interactivity is the other attribute which the website excels at. NME is a huge corporation, which encompasses print, radio and tv and this is reflected online. The radio is playing while you read an article or watch a vlog post.

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Techno-journalist

It seems these days, with the pressures of all forms of media on top of us, journalists must be machines.

As spoken about in previous posts, a journalist is expected to update, write and publish stories at the click of a mouse in the flash of a second. Sometimes, it can be physically impossible and can significantly impede on the work produced, a point which was laboured upon in my seminar presentation.

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Totally Dublin and Limehouse magazines

I thought it was important to take a break from examining online NEWS journalism sites and take a glance at the different forms of online journalism.

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TG4

Ah, Irish television and news. How we have forgotten you. It seems a lifetime since TG4 was ever mentioned during my studies in DCU. All you ever hear about is RTÉ and TV3, if even that much.

But I have to admit I do have a soft spot for TG4. Not only does it advertise itself well (well enough for a so-called dying language broadcaster), it has a great mix of news, sport and entertainment shows. Some World Cinema movies which would never be shown on english-speaking television are run on TG4 and it is thoroughly enjoyable. I think some of the other Irish broadcasters should really take a few pages out of TG4’s book.

The website is also a shining star for the broadcaster. It is brightly colourful, yet completely simplistic. The frontpage has many links to everything you want to see. The site is also flexing an edge over it’s competitors with a ‘TG4 store’ to buy Irish language dvds and merchandise.

The site also boasts a helpful ‘english version’ button and allows for reader feedback. The website, to me encapsulates what a good online journalism website should be. It’s transparent, interactive, allows for citizen feedback and is easy to  navigate and understand. It grabs attention and makes a point, something most other broadcast websites fail to do.

Advertising is kept to a minimum and the links are organised into different categories to aid the viewer/reader and to create as much ease as possible. I would instantly be more drawn to the likes of this website, rather than RTÉ. Although I do admit TG4 is definitely lacking in the up-to-the-minute news aspect of their website. If they had one more bar with an RSS Feed of news or even the top stories it would make it an exceptional site and a credit to the country.

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