Insert Coin(s) to Continue has always been first and foremost, a blog about my experience and thoughts surrounding game design. Having game design concepts be communicated in a written blog was more of a way for me to get my ideas and understandings centralized in one place. Continuous blogging got me to look for different topics to write about, and research further into the ‘how’ and the ‘why’ of game development. By doing so, I could address a broad audience with my take of my subject of interest, while pointing out things in a manner that just about anyone could pick up and relate to. I picked common aspects that occur even from the most casual of games to the hardcore, pointing out what seems to be the blatantly obvious, but simple themes no one stops to think about. In this sense, I had envisioned my public sphere to be much more than a single demographic of readers, but rather anyone who has even the slightest interest in games.
Although the intentions behind the blog was purely self-interest, over the course of the semester it has become more of a learning resource, not just for myself, but for my readers as well. Posing open-ended questions to myself and my public holds intrinsic value, as it gets me to think of addressing an audience, regardless of whether or not I have one or not. Google Analytics allowed me to rid myself of the uncertainty, by allowing me to track the traffic of my website, allowing for invaluable data for me to access. Examples of this would be to see what types of topics are the most popular, and what kind of demographic region my blog is reaching. Even by the end of this semester, where I was aware of just how few viewers were visiting the blog and posts, it never stopped me from keeping my ideas and prose open-ended for a wider audience. This is because envisioning the viewers as people I could actively talk to, making it easier for my writing to be a little more candid than the stiff prose I normally use for writing essays or other lengthy writing. In consideration of this, I deliberately chose not to implement advertisements on my blog, despite the possible monetary gain that can result from proper ad placement. But as a person who always has ad-block on, it doesn’t feel fair to my users to be detracting from their experience by distracting them with irrelevant material on the blog.
Coming back full circle to the course, and to the first page of PUB101, everyone is a publisher. An exaggeration at first, when thinking of the people who successfully establish their blogging presence. But that isn’t necessarily the case. No matter how small one’s viewership is, they remain to be a publisher so long as they continue to produce content. Which raises the question of whether or not that makes me a publisher after this semester is over. I remain uncertain whether or not I shall continue updating my blog on a regular basis, or even at all. So by that definition, do I still qualify as a publisher anymore? That question depends on how much interest I still have in spending time on blogging. But nevertheless, I still have the remaining 8 months of my domain in which I still have a writing space available. Insert Coin(s) to Continue certainly has been an interesting experience, to say the least. Not just the content-writing portion of the blog, but the gradual improvements of design over several months. One article of the required readings in particular struck a chord in me. It was titled, “Why I Am Not a Maker”, and particularly, the section where it mentions Ayn Rand in which she says: “any work that needed to be done day after day was meaningless, and that only creating new things was a worthwhile endeavor.” (Chacra, C., 2015). And to that, I wholeheartedly agreed. Before anything else, this blog was for school. There were weekly requirements to be fulfilled, essays to write, peers to review. On some days where I’d struggle to have time to write, school would have to take priority, thus further shelving the time for another regular post. And this is not to the fault of the course, having needed to teach and evaluate as necessary. But I shall abandon my blog for now, in hopes of one day I feel like I shall revisit it just for old times sake.
Bleymaier, T. (2013). On Advertising. Retrieved from http://on-advertising.tumblr.com/
Chachra, D. (2015). Why I am not a maker. The Atlantic. Retrieved from https://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2015/01/why-i-am-not-a-maker/384767/
Warner, M. (2002). Publics and Counterpublics. Quarterly Journal of Speech. Retrieved from http://knowledgepublic.pbworks.com/f/warnerPubCounterP.pdf