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Writing & Ethics in a Digital Age.

Technical Writing & Digital Publishing: All Alone in English.

ImageI’m teaching a digital publishing class this fall, and I would like to use this site to gather and reflect on resources for the course.

I’d also like this site to become a good resource for writers out there who are just starting out in the bewildering an exciting arena of digital publishing with all that it entails.

Please feel free to join the conversation!

 In”Music in Hypertexts: Toward a Real Media Integration,”Francesca Chiocci argues music can create an hierarchy to guide readers through links and provide coherence to a site. Yet, by the definition provided by George P. Landow’s “The Definition of Hypertext and Its History as a Concept“, hypertext is pluralistic. It’s (re)written by each reader, and as Roland Barthes posits in S/Z, a hypertext is composed of signifiers, not signifieds (qtd. in Landow).

Can music provide a definitive signified in a hypertext medium? Should it? Even as we engage with technorhetorical strategies to create an hierarchy within a site, each link, each lexia, must remain independent. But if music could control a site, how might the writing change? Would it change?

Colorado State University offers excellent suggestions for collaborative writing. In the past, I’ve written collaboratively in several ways, including Divide The Writing Tasks and Gather to Write Together. These strategies work well, as long as you’re informed regarding the pitfalls of each type. What follows is a brief peek behind the scenes of each strategy.

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In class, we discussed blogging as a community and why it’s important to own your comment personally. Legally, you have to own your comment, especially if you’re being nasty. According to The Blog Herald’s “Anonymous Blog Posting/Commenting to Become Illegal in the United States (unless you have only nice things to say), Potentially Outlaws Comment Spam, it’s now illegal to post anything that might be considered “annoying” and do so anonymously.

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Bloggers link to one another through their Blogrolls.

To add a link to your Blogroll:

  • Choose Blogroll from the top tool bar.
  • Three links will pop up below the main tool bar: Manage Blogroll, Add a link, Import a link.
  • Choose Add a link. Type in the name of the site, the url, and a brief description if you like.
  • Be sure to select which category (on the left hand side) to determine where the link will be placed.
  • Click on save.

To edit your Blogroll:

  • Select Manage Blogroll.
  • Each link you’ve added to the Blogroll is listed.
  • Near the left-hand side of the page, you’ll see two links: edit and delete.
  • To edit the link, choose edit.
  • To delete a site from your Blogroll, select delete.

What’s the difference between a category and a page?

A category is a dynamic site–it’s changing with every post you write. Once you’ve created categories, such as Technical Writing, Writing for the Web, and W315, select which category to post to on the left hand side of the page when you write a post. Your categories will show up either on the left or the right side of the site, depending on which template you chose. It also controls your blogroll. Each category will have its own blogroll.

A page is a static site–the contents don’t change with each new post you write. Some bloggers re-title Pages to Sticky Posts, because they stick around on the main blog site. For example, if you have a post that receives hundreds of hits, eventually it will be buried in the archives. By creating a page, the audience doesn’t have to dig for it. I would consider a page a place to announce the purpose of the site, or to highlight your best posts.