The Arkon Agency

Digital Artefact and Blog Assessment Site

Contextual Essay BCM 302

DA Link: thetalesoftwentyhorns.wordpress.com 

Introduction: The Tales OF Twentyhorns

Welcome to my final Digital Artefact assignment for the BCm course. As will be discussed in greater detail further along, this project does not resemble anything close to a successfully implemented Digital Artefact but the process of generation has once again impressed upon me important lessons revolving around the concepts of  iteration, feedback loops and serialisation. The current utilization of this program is on that more revolves around personal use, my BETA project describes it as a “pinterest Board for my writing” which sort of defeats the purpose of a ‘public utilization’ as requested by the project parameters. I would argue that this project is still technically available for public uses, and as such can be construed as a public resource. The key concepts of this contextual essay will cover the projects history, what it originated as and where it has come to a rest after myriad iteration, any and all important learning experiences brought about due to said iteration and its academic implications and finally any future iteration concepts and where the project will stand beyond the space of this assessment. At its core, My DA is a creative writing resource, one that has assisted in the development of my first book, so although I consider it a semi-developed Digital artefact, iit is not without its merits, the importance of this paper will be to justify this use of academic focused time into such a project. Issues this DA potential helps solve include writers block, reading group generation and inspiration sourcing. This project has undertaken many iterations and to contextualize its current state a timeline of these iterations must be made available. 

Project History and Trajectory: 

Initially this project was to be an extension of a previous one, Weavers and Wyrms, a sort of interactive web based narrative influenced by the initial feedback loop. That version of the project had a small amount of success, with some of my Twitter followers checking it out and getting back to me. This project however had little to no early influx of readers, an issue that I identified but failed to address, which we will cover later. The process began with the creation of a new wordpress blog, I already had a blog site but decided as a resource they served fundamentally different purposes. The Tales of Twentyhorns blog was born and featured in several tweets, although it had no content, something i would soon address. However after posting a couple of opening concepts, with tweet quotes to advertise their presence, it became clear that a change was needed. The Narrative Blog concept was scrapped and it instead became a social board, where people could post their own work and comment on others, a sort of massive reading group forum. My problem here more than anything else was my overestimation of my reach. Sites like this already exist, and mine offered nothing different or unique. By this time the Beta was due and The Tales of Twentyhorns begrudgingly became my pinterest style self reflection board. The core reason that the project trajectory led to this particular final stage has much to do with my lack of feedback loop integration, somethin i have addressed before in my BETA video.

Important Learning Experiences: 

There were three core learning outcomes of my Twenty Horns project: Required Implementation of Serialisation, the impact of lack of networks and the need to publicly iterate rather than privately brainstorm improvement. Serialisation was my key concept I needed to implement, as although my work was bite sized in the form of blog style posts it lacked the audience influence of something like a webtoon. With an audience serialisation can effectively recognise “patterns relating to the timing of events and the content” (O’Brien, 2017) which would allow for more focus iteration. Keeping with the Webtoon analogy leads us to a further point ‘Author / Reader Dynamics, something that serialisation has changed significantly. This boils down to strategizing the best “distribution and publication of instalments” (Romaguera, 2015), in regards to non-video content. Essentially, I needed to ask myself what timeline of release would best suit my audience. Serialisation and “Transmedia storytelling are often presented as a product of the new millennium” (Claudia, 2019) with modern examples of its implementation including popular apps like TikTok storytimes and the aforementioned webtoon comics. Studies have proven that this format of media can increase critical motivational brain activity. “Result-oriented reward pursuit could play an important role” (Lee, 2020) in the success of a product such as my digital artefact. 

The second important learning experience of my current assignment was the recognition that  a team dynamic may improve the overall quality of the digital artefact.  if we were to keep with the webtoon analogy and all that and of the writer contribute to the overall success  of the final results. Although I reached out to several artists to assist with a more visual element of my assignment I never pursued it beyond much of a cursory element. I feel as if an important part of this assignment would be the implication and subsequent positive results of social networking and by not including a secondary partner, as implied by the marking rubric I have done myself a disservice. “Social networked relationships often bring about not just immediate success but also long term professional results as well” (Abreu, 2011). 

The final key learning experience of this project  was The need to publicly iterate rather than privately brainstorm.  rather than use a private Google doc to develop new iterations of my project a superior step would have been to livestream these brainstorm sessions on social media, or perhaps engaged to a deeper degree with the Discord classes. With more active Personal iteration practices such as these, a more modern leaning audience, and subsequent feedback loop could have been reached. A “vast majority of people use social media as they use such media to support their studies” and by tapping into this available resource I could have potentially increased my Digital Artefacts appeal. 

Future Iteration/Public Utility: 

If I’m to be perfectly honest the chances of vestigial artefact moving Beyond the stage or becoming the basis of another project is quite small.  It has served its purpose in the short-term, by being the tall I’m using two edit and create a project currently codenamed ‘Fanticide’.It did get the ball moving on this secondary project however it’s utility now has begun to deteriorate beyond the point of utilisation. Now to be clear this digital artefact still has clear public utility in the form of being a reading and writing forum, however with no projected future  iteration I feel as if it’s shuffle life is minimal. I think one issue I had regarding the vision of the digital artefact came within my perception of professional and creative writing, I believe I started this project with a more emotional/past time connection with writing, and another devolved into one that is more professionally focused over the course of the semester. 

Key issue arises where my iteration did not evolve with this understanding of the core elements of my digital artefact.I would argue that creative writing even in it description is one that academically is hard to justify this can be due to the fact that much of the learning regarding creative writing revolves around expressing ones creativity rather than exploring theory and my problem was I started with that goal of exploring the art form rather than dedicating myself to the Improvement of a product which I think comes down to hey self-imposed misunderstanding of the requirements of this assignment.  you would think after 3 years of doing did you artefacts I would have a basic understanding of what is required however every time I get to these contextual essays I always end up a little confused as to what my original purpose was, I always find myself wondering whether or not  the task completed is the one that has been requested of me. This little sister said when tutorials show me that the assignment can be whatever I want it to be and that I have the creative freedom to develop this product,  but unfortunately I think that’s going to be the key takeaway of  my experience with digital artefacts. 

To sum it all up,  my digital artefact was marred by self imposed racking serialisation, a crippled feedback loop and a visionless end. Personally I would mark this project as an instructive failure. Oftentimes in the opening tutorial of BCM classes we are told this type of result is perfectly fine, but it has happened in mine a couple too many times, allowing a more relevant lesson to be learnt this time: specifically dealing with failure and how to move on. I’m told I can move onto another project almost too quickly so in this case I am letting it settle in my chest, allowing this project’s failure to really sit with me and inform my next steps more thoroughly.

If all goes well this could be one of my last University assignments and as such my next DA may be one of a professional nature thus these lessons are perhaps the most important of my degree. 

Reference list

de Abreu, Belinha S 2011, Media Literacy, Social Networking, and the Web 2.0 Environment for the K-12 Educator. Minding the Media: Critical Issues for Learning and Teaching. Volume 4., Peter Lang New York, Peter Lang New York. 29 Broadway 18th Floor, New York, NY 10006. Tel: 800-770-5264; Tel: 212-647-7706; Fax: 212-647-7707; e-mail: customerservice@plang.com; Web site: http://www.peterlang.com, viewed 15 November 2020, <https://eric.ed.gov/?id=ED519808&gt;.

Hrastinski, S & Aghaee, NM 2011, ‘How are campus students using social media to support their studies? An explorative interview study’, Education and Information Technologies, vol. 17, no. 4, pp. 451–464, viewed 15 November 2020, <https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10639-011-9169-5&gt;.

Light, G 2002, Higher Education, vol. 43, no. 2, pp. 257–276, viewed 15 November 2020, <https://link.springer.com/article/10.1023/A:1013728500652&gt;.

Martins, C 2019, ‘Transmedia storytelling e webtoons: velhos mundos em roupagens novas’, V Conferência Ibérica de Inovação na Educação com TIC: ieTIC2019: livro de atas, Instituto Politécnico de Bragança, pp. 238–250, viewed 15 November 2020, <https://bibliotecadigital.ipb.pt/handle/10198/19617&gt;.

Media spaces: bringing people together in a video, audio, and computing environment: Communications of the ACM: Vol 36, No 1 2010, Communications of the ACM, viewed 15 November 2020, <https://dl.acm.org/doi/abs/10.1145/151233.151235&gt;.

Nash, JF 2019, Continuous Iteration Method for Solution of Differential Games, Rand.org, RAND Corporation, viewed 15 November 2020, <https://www.rand.org/pubs/research_memoranda/RM1326.html&gt;.

O’Brien, FA, Meadows, M & Griffiths, S 2017, ‘Serialisation and the use of Twitter: Keeping the conversation alive in public policy scenario projects’, Technological Forecasting and Social Change, vol. 124, pp. 26–40, viewed 15 November 2020, <https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0040162517306558&gt;.

Romaguera, G 2015a, ‘Waiting for the Next Part: How the Temporal Dimensions of Digital Serialisation Have Changed Author-Reader Dynamics’, Networking Knowledge: Journal of the MeCCSA Postgraduate Network, vol. 8, no. 4, viewed 15 November 2020, <https://ojs.meccsa.org.uk/index.php/netknow/article/view/388&gt;.

― 2015b, ‘Waiting for the Next Part: How the Temporal Dimensions of Digital Serialisation Have Changed Author-Reader Dynamics’, Networking Knowledge: Journal of the MeCCSA Postgraduate Network, vol. 8, no. 4, viewed 15 November 2020, <https://ojs.meccsa.org.uk/index.php/netknow/article/view/388&gt;.

Why do students fall into webtoon viewing while they give up mathematics? – An fMRI study: International Journal of Knowledge and Learning: Vol 13, No 3 2020, International Journal of Knowledge and Learning, viewed 15 November 2020, <https://www.inderscienceonline.com/doi/abs/10.1504/IJKL.2020.109883&gt;.

%d bloggers like this: