Tag Archives: #peerreview

Peer Review_3

For the final peer review, I was assigned to review Emma’s personal blog. When I first open up Emma’s blog, I am impressed by her design. I really like what Emma do with her website. For example, in my opinion, the grey background color mixes well with the black texts- a smart choice to present her blog. Even though it seems quite simple to go with this combination of color, I can easily and comfortably enjoy reading Emma’s literatures. In this circumstance, compare to blogs that have color contrast that is uncomfortable to human eyes, Emma has made the great color design choice for her audiences. In addition, the other good design that I adore from Emma’s blog is the well organized and structured categories. Throughout Emma’s blog, I can easily navigate through the main menus- assignments, writing and poems that Emma wish to present to her readers. With these well organized menus, surely I can tell that Emma’s intended audiences will be people who love to read and write different types of literatures. Similarly to the colour theme of Emma’s blog, the majority of the titles Emma sets are simple BUT strong and meaningful. From these simple BUT strong themes, they reflect the personalities of Emma. Just like Emma states in her “about me” page, she wishes that her readers can understand the person behind the posts. From my point of view, the short introduction tells me that the contents are created solely by Emma and represented Emma herself- “Simple but Strong and Meaningful.” At this point, as Emma’s reader I would really like to read more about her posts once I see these “simple BUT strong” titles. For instance, the poem “confidence is key” have my attention right away when I see it. As expected, I am touched by Emma’s poem that “I wish I had as much confidence as the men who know they won’t be held accountable for their actions.” Through looking at Emma’s posts, personally, I definitely believe that Emma has the potential to attract more readers in the future. To emphasize, myself unfortunately is not a big fan of reading, especially not the literatures that are written in English. Nonetheless, Emma’s posts have the charm can draw my attention to go on reading her writings. In the circumstance, I think that Emma’s blog also has the personality to fascinate people who are not interested in reading. Ultimately, I would say that it is my pleasure to review Emma’s blog this week. I really enjoy reading her literatures and I will definitely keep following her writings in the future! Lastly, I would like to thank Emma for her review of my blog as well, really appreciate it!

Thank you for reading, if you are a big fan of reading different literatures, check out Emma’s blog, here!

Peer Review 3: Taking Life by the Love Handles

For my peer review, I am reviewing Jenella’s blog titled Taking Life by the Love Handles.

A quick glance of her homepage, I know why she chooses this theme. The pink tones and colorful photos of food are welcoming. The white is a nice contrast to highlight her blog content and it helps accentuate the colors of her photos. It’s appealing and easy on the eyes. It compels me to read more!

As you scroll down her homepage, her social media pages are easily available. To me, this is showing that she markets her personality with her blog. They go hand in hand and I believe she includes her own ‘self’ into her content. Where she eats tells something a little bit more about herself.

Food is the center of her brand, and she makes it clear. On her About page, she explains why she loves food and why it’s important to her. This idea and how she presents it is creating a space where she expresses herself and why she writes about food. She even addresses this when she shares her personal experience on doing something other than food on her Food and Friends blog.

These ideas are present and explained danah boyd’s It’s Complicated where she writes about the feeling of togetherness and through networked publics, communities can be connected through technology. For Jenella, she is creating this blog of togetherness. Almost all her times eating out are with friends! She shares her physical experiences through this network and her other channels.

She does a great job showcasing this physical space too. With her social media presence and her appealing photos, she is spreading wide on multiple channels. The pictures serve as a tangible step to a purely networked space. As seen in the Youtube stars’ trend on publishing books,  it’s good to have a balance of online and offline content. Her blog posts have a balance of media and text. It’s a bonus that she takes great photos!

I do want to suggest a way to have these ideas better presented in her blog. I feel that she has a lot to say, and it doesn’t have to sacrifice the content she already writes.

Hot Ones on Youtube

Hot Ones is one of my favorite web series because it brings a fresh take on interviews; eating very spicy wings and talking. What I want to highlight for Jenella’s blog is the fact that some guests do a great job conversing about the wings and about their careers well that it becomes an interview for both. Alton Brown comes to mind. Each restaurant she goes to does not necessarily need a ‘deep’ or ‘introspective’ conversation with her friends, but I see her as being part of the content too. I’m curious to see why she chooses this restaurant or what is exciting or familiar about this restaurant? These elements would give more ‘food’ to the readers about who she is and exemplify the reasons she loves the food.

Peer Review #3 – Piece of Cake

I had the opportunity to review Anissa’s blog, Piece of Cake. The name of the blog is very clever as it fits well with the content. I applaud her on taking this commonly used phrase and making it meaningful by creating relevant content.

I would suggest adjusting the tagline so that it states “tips and tricks for event planning on a budget” instead of “tips and tricks to party planning on a budget” since the content encompasses more than just parties as it includes birthdays, weddings and holidays. With the adjusted the tagline, it would create a transitional flow with the about me section as the tagline and the first paragraph of this section would be more connected. The remainder of the about me section provides a personal perspective as to why she has chosen this topic for her blog. It is evident that she is passionate about and has a strong interest for event planning. This passion is essential in marketing her blog to her intended audience since this is what separates her blog from others. Unlike Toast which did not have a clear mission statement, Anissa’s tagline acts as a mission statement as it lets readers know what the objective of her blog is (Carpenter, 2016).

Moreover, consider removing the home category since clicking on the name of the blog, Piece of Cake, directs readers back to the homepage. Also, the usage of three different shades of grey on the homepage makes the page seem busy. I would suggest using two consistent shades, a light, and dark grey so that this ensures what Mauve Pagé called unity through colour consistency (Pagé, 2018). Furthermore, the aqua on the homepage seems out of place since it was only used once. I would suggest incorporating more of this colour so that it creates what Mauve Pagé called rhythm (Pagé, 2018). Changing the colour of the “subscribe to newsletter” button from grey to aqua when a viewer is hovering over it would be a subtle yet effective way to accomplish this.

The ability to let readers subscribe to a newsletter is great. I would suggest adding a brief description of what the newsletter will entail so that potential subscribers know what they are signing up for. I applaud Anissa on setting this up as it is a great way to establish readership of her blog. Additionally, it will strengthen her relationship with her audience (Nederkoorn, n.d.). Although it is a rare commodity to see someone actually read a privacy policy, I did not see a way to access it on Anissa’s blog; this may deter readers from subscribing.

A social media presence is a great way for people to discover and share Anissa’s blog, however, since the accounts are not very active, they are taking up valuable real estate on her homepage. If she decides to keep these icons, I suggest moving them closer to the about me section so that after reading about her users are more inclined to visit and follow her on social media. Currently, the icons are situated in a spot where they seem out of place with a large amount of white space above and to the right of them.

Moreover, I enjoyed the content posted on Anissa’s blog as I found the post about Pumpkin Carving Stencils to be very useful as I had never considered poking small holes and using a stencil to carve my pumpkin. I wish that I had viewed her blog earlier so that I could have implemented this a few weeks ago for Halloween, but I will definitely keep this in mind for next year. Additionally, there was a post which seemed to be missing as I received a page not found error; this was the Toasted Pumpkin Seeds Recipe. However, the Perfect Pumpkin Pie Recipe reminded me of an article which dealt with the legalities of copyright for a recipe book (Henein, 2015).

Overall, I found the content to be clear and concise; this is very helpful because when you are planning an event there are many things to do in preparation of it, so time is of the essence. I believe that it is very helpful to have the content structured in this manner so that readers know exactly what they need to do and still have ample time to prepare.

In Anissa’s process post from week six, she mentioned that her intended audience is young and middle-aged women. However, I think that her intended audience encompasses many more people especially since there is a variety in the content which she is publishing. I believe that her intended audience and entails anyone who is planning on celebrating a birthday, wedding or holiday and is looking for tips and tricks. Regardless, the content is relevant to her audience.

When it comes to the usability of the blog, I recalled Mauve Pagé’s presentation where she mentioned that a seamless experience across all platforms holds high importance for viewers (Pagé, 2018). With this in mind, I viewed Anissa’s blog on my phone and noted that her entire blog was well optimized for mobile devices. Additionally, it features quick loading times which also holds value for viewers. Lastly, I would suggest adding a site icon so that when viewers pin the blog to their browser it is easier for them to identify the blog.

Ultimately, Anissa’s blog has been designed in a way which makes the content appealing for her audience. If you are interested in reading more, click here!

 

References

Carpenter, S. (2016, May 13). The Toast Is Toast: Literary Humor Site Shuts Down Over Ad Revenue Woes. Retrieved from https://www.forbes.com/sites/shelbycarpenter/2016/05/13/the-toast-is-toast-and-its-devastating/#2845909a48f6

Henein, P. (2015, October 27). You Say “Tomaydo”, I Say No Copyright Infringement: Recipe Book Not An Original Compilation. Retrieved from https://www.casselsbrock.com/CBNewsletter/You_Say__Tomaydo___I_Say_No_Copyright_Infringement__Recipe_Book_Not_An_Original_Compilation

Pagé, M. (2018, October 2). Mauve Pagé. Presentation, Simon Fraser University Vancouver.

Nederkoorn, C. (n.d.). Should you write blog posts or email newsletters? Retrieved from https://customer.io/blog/blog-post-or-newsletter-content-marketing/

Between the Stripes — A Review

Jenny Chan’s blog, “Between the Stripes”, is a beautifully simplistic space to explore new worlds of music while being within the comforts of home. Especially at a time of the year where I would be sitting inside, by a window, while the weather can do whatever it pleases outside. The design reflects this, as if the sun or the natural light was peering through the window trying to see what I was doing.

 

Exploring the site itself, I first notice there is a strange “social media & sharing icons” link that brings me to a page for plugins with WordPress; I’m not sure if you can get rid of that or not, it’s at the bottom of the page, so it’s not the biggest deal if you can’t. However, it looks a little off just because it isn’t aligned right with the blurb above it that reads “BETWEEN THE STRIPES Powered by WordPress and FancyThemes”.

Like I mentioned before, I love the colors, not sure if you could add a bit more shadow around the title and play around with that a bit more? As for the menus and categories, I also think the Home About and Captures sections would benefit from and stand out a bit more if it was placed on the black stripe, but if that was the point to be in between the lines, I would add shadow to that as well.  As for the content, I love how you incorporated all the different senses in the “About” section. Keep up the Captures page!

Your “Recent Posts” section keeps repeating every time you post “song of the day” so maybe change that somehow, or number the title in each one? As well, as a reader who may want to comment, it was hard to understand that the“post comment” button was there because it is highlighted black, so it was a little confusing until I hovered over it to make a comment. I would change that so it’s not highlighted black. The mobile version of your website looks very nice as well.

I’m loving the social media outreach on the site; it makes it very interactive and builds more dimension to the simplicity of the site. My one suggestion would be to use specific social media pages as the blog, instead of your own personal Instagram, or your own personal Instagram. With a Between the Stripes Instagram, you could post your song of the day, maybe a blurb with it. You can also purchase InstaReport to keep statistics on that as well! I know some music-based social medias post parts of songs and perhaps you could do the same on behalf of the page. My confusion with Pinterest leads me to ask if there is a specific page on Pinterest you’d like us to look at that is relevant to your blog? Because there are many boards related to your Pinterest. Maybe make sure it just links to a specific board or perhaps a completely different Between the Stripes Pinterest account instead of your whole Pinterest profile. Otherwise, I have definitely been inspired by the social media interactivity and aspire to reflect that in my website as well!

If anyone is feeling adventurous and has a craving for new music, definitely check out Jenny’s blog here: http://triangularzebras.com

Peer Review #3

For my third peer review, I am reviewing Zhifeng’s (Neo’s) blog, www.neo100.com

In order to assess his blog’s marketability to his intended audience, I first had to determine who his intended audience might be. So I went to his About section. There, I learned that his blog is a space to discuss Chinese movies, primarily looking at the Chinese culture in the movies. From this, I can deduce that his intended audience is people who are interested in Chinese movies (or maybe even just movies or Chinese culture in general). Now I can turn to assessing his blog’s content and design from the perspective of one of his audience members.

Content

Neo has two posts that relate to his blog’s content. The first one reviews the movie Buddies in India. From his post, I learned the synopsis of the film and learned that the movie is in fact based on a famous novel about journeying to the West. Relating to this, Neo also discusses Chinese New Year and the New Year movie season. As a reader, I find his post informative and engaging. He discusses many different aspects relating to the movie as well as movie culture in general, which I found very interesting. In his second blog post, Neo reviews the movie Journey to the West: Demon Chapter. He talks about how this follows the current trend of reconstructing classic tales to create new content that might appeal to movie audiences. He also provides a useful explanation of a type of character seen in the movie.

Overall, I find Neo’s content interesting, informative, and ultimately, related to his blog’s theme. He also links well to external sites in which he finds his information. However, one suggestion I would make is to make more posts. Neo only has two and thus, more movie reviews would appeal to returning readers! Another suggestion I have regarding content is to make the posts a bit longer and analyze more aspects of the movies and their cultural content. Finally, Neo may want to consider advertising. As we have learned through class and the readings, ads can really help to attract readers as well as be a source of potential revenue. And considering the blog’s theme, I would assume that movie-related ads may appear on his website, which might be attractive to readers.

Design

When I follow the URL of Neo’s blog, this is what I am greeted with:

The title at the top makes it very clear what the blog is about, which is an important first feature to have. I enjoy the header picture and think the blog has a simple, clean look to it. However, there is a limitation to Neo’s blog with the Menu bar. The menu bar has only two sections: Home and About. And in fact, on the home page, there is only his two movie posts. In order to access Neo’s Posiel content, you have to find his categories, which are here on the side:

This layout is not very intuitive and as a reader, confuses me. Additionally, the fact that he has ‘Recent’ as a category seems even more confusing. If you click on Recent, the posts that are labelled with this category are the same two posts that are on his home page. I do not understand the reasoning nor logic behind this. As we have discussed in class numerous times, intuitive design is very important in guiding readers logically through a blog and in helping them to engage with the content.

Finally, Neo does not have any links to social media or ways in which to contact him directly. He might want to consider adding links to different platforms so that readers can engage with him more. However, this would be a personal marketing/branding choice and thus he may not want to do that for personal reasons which is completely okay!

Overall, I enjoyed reviewing Neo’s blog and I think its strengths lie in its straightforward and informative content. However, his design may need tampering with in order to make his blog more accessible and really unlock its full potential!