Blog for The Matthew Initiative

So I’m making a blog/website for my mom and sister’s foundation, The Matthew Initiative. I’m pretty sure I’ve mentioned it before, but I’m actually doing a redo of their site for my English class.

Two Birds. One stone.

So here’s what I have so far:

CONTENT

I have all of the information from their former website (which sucks) as well as the personal information that they’ve given me. I want their new site to be based on their experiences and blogging, so I’m trying to get them to write more.

NEEDED CONTENT

I want to have more pictures and more stories. It would be awesome to have a “Successes” page where those who were positively impacted by the foundation can write their stories. I also need to mess around with Blogger this weekend. There are some amazing sites out there, but I want to be able to make something unique for the foundation.

HOW WILL I ACCOMPLISH IT

I am meeting with my sister (co-founder) to get some success stories and photos. She will be my main contact for the project. She is very into social media, and she has a certain thought already about what she wants the site to look like.

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It is not the critic who …

It is not the critic who counts: not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles or where the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly, who errs and comes up short again and again, because there is no effort without error or shortcoming, but who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, who spends himself for a worthy cause; who, at the best, knows, in the end, the triumph of high achievement, and who, at the worst, if he fails, at least he fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who knew neither victory nor defeat.

Theodore Roosevelt 

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Sometimes reality has a way of sneaking up and biting us in the ass. And when the dam bursts, all you can do is swim. The world of pretend is a cage, not a cocoon. We can only lie to ourselves for so long. We are tired, we are scared, denying it doesn’t change the truth. Sooner or later we have to put aside our denial and face the world. Head on, guns blazing. De Nile. It’s not just a river in Egypt, it’s a freakin’ ocean. So how do you keep from drowning in it?

-Meredith, Grey’s Anatomy

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On The Online Version of “Isacc Claims Fatality as Thousands Forced to Evacuate”

It is truly amazing how the print text and an online text of the same article can differ.

The same article can be found on CNN’s website (http://www.cnn.com/2012/08/30/us/weather-isaac/index.html), and it is very different. There are more details, pictures, and even videos that sit along side the text, making the article feel warmer.

I don’t know if it’s the coldness that is associated with reading news in black and white, but my feelings really changed after seeing the article online. You can see images of the rising water, making the scenarios seem more vivid and emotional. There are also personal interviews with affected families, showing that the news source actually cares about the people that it is reporting on.

Overall, I would rather see my news online with pictures and media than in print. It jsut seems more human to me.

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On “Isaac Claims Fatiality as Thousands Forced to Evacuate”

This article was a very fast read. As a lover of all things fiction and artistic, it is difficult for me to really emmerse myself in news writing because I feel that there is so little emotion.

“(They) were rescued by a neighbor on Wednesday. ‘We were in susvivor mode.’ he said.”

“(He) thought he and his family would be safe after Isaac made landfall until he saw the fast-rising water. At that point, he knew he had to get his family out of their home.”

These quotes are about people litterally fleeing from their homes as water rises quickly, yet I am not blown away by the emotion that I expected there to be when discussing such a serious situation. Maybe it’s just me, but I like seeing the actual story behind the tragedy, not just a cold report on what happened.

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Is Mass Communication Getting a Makeover?

When I first began reading today’s texts, I noticed that they were a little dated. When you think about history, 17 years doesn’t really seem like that long ago; however, 17 years for the Internet is a long time ago. Think about it. When President Bill Clinton was in the White House, he only sent two emails, and one of them was to ask his secretary if he was sending it correctly. Crazy right?

In the text, “Convergence and Its Consequences,” the writer asks this question:

“How, specifically, is convergence transforming the nature of mass communication, leading to a reexamination of the term ‘mass communication’ itself?”

The text goes on to describe a time in the future when Internet users would have all kinds of different resources at their disposal. Search engines, hyperlinks, and advertisements would combine to make their Internet experience come alive with options. When I really think about it, this has already happened.

I am currently typing in my iPad. As I type there is a little bar in the top right corners where, if I were so motivated, I could Google my assignment and see what other people have to say about my reading. All of this could happen as I am sitting outside a coffee shop, perfectly connected as I watch this dreary Atlanta Thursday begin. Is this what this author is describing when he talks about the convergence of company and Internet?

The idea that a user could be completely immersed in products with just one click seemed like a really far out idea, but it really has happened. There are ebooks that come alive with products, songs, and maps as you read. Though some would say that this is just supplemental to the reading, it really is advertising. As the character talks about a song she loves, it floods your earbuds, and you soon find yourself purchasing the song through the easy link to iTunes. The J Crew sweater is conveniently hyperlinked, and with one click your are swept away to buy your own sweater. It is truly amazing how much technology has changed, but I am wondering if it has changed the meaning of mass communication.

I don’t think so. In this text, mass communication is described as largely accessible communication and information. This is still true, but there are a few new fun features added. The purpose of the internet and technology is to connect with other people, and we are able to do that now more than ever.

If this is the change that has occurred within only 17 years, we’ll totally have holograms by the time I’m 40.

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It’s been awhile….

I’d like to start off by admitting something: I am a traitor. It’s been 18 months since I have posted on this blog. Why, you ask? I already told you. I’m a traitor. A Tumblr traitor.

So I started getting frustrated with WordPress because I couldn’t reblog the fun stuff that I found on Tumblr websites. So I switched. I know. Bad. But I needed a place to post all of my random awesome internet finds. Like this:

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And this:

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i know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking that I’m one of those people who only blogs to write indie quotes on skylines or to talk about how all men suck. Well, no, that’s not true. I just like things that make me laugh, and posting on WordPress constantly is difficult. So now I have a photo/bullshit blog: labellealexandra.tumblr.com.

So, why am I posting on WordPress now? Glad you asked!

There have been a few updates since I last posted:

  • I am now 22, which in Greek Life makes me OLD. Like get-that-girl-a-walker old.
  • I run Sorority Recruitment. I hope you’re laughing about that seeing as I posted about The Strokes and wearing Toms.
  • My sister got married one year ago in October.
  • I am trying to figure out if I want a gap year next year or if I should go to Grad school.
  • I switched my major from Graphic Design to English. Art is now my minor.
  • My emphasis is Creative Writing. 

There it is. I am a senior now majoring in English with an emphasis in Creative Writing. That means that I write A LOT. That also means that I am taking English classes, one of which requires me to “make a WordPress account.”  I thought about deleting all of the stuff from my sophomore and junior year in order to start fresh, but I reconsidered. Why delete something that I might want to look at one day? So here I am, resurrecting the blog that I swore I would keep up with. Get excited, people. Maybe take two will be better than take one.

So there have been some changes in 18 months, but there are also many things that have stayed the same:

  • I still have a severe caffeine addiction.
  • I still LOVE music. Mumford and Sons are the best thing ever.
  • Fall is still my favorite season.
  • Cardigans are still essential.
  • Tea is always supposed to be sweet.
  • I still love Toms.
  • My cat is still adorable even though she now lives with my sister. More on that later.
  • Friends change as you get older. I am learning who my actual friends are.
  • Life is weird and random crap should always be documented.
  • “We are intrepid; we carry on.” is still an amazing quote.

I’m Alexandra, and this is still me.

Annnddddd you’re welcome.

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