New English Student Association Website & Blog

      The academic career of an English student is often a solitary one. For many of our classes, we simply attend lectures, write our papers, and write the final exam. For my personal project, I took the liberty of creating a new website for the 2010-2011 English Student Association with the hopes of connecting all students in the English department. This idea is one that the last group of executives had been toying around with in the past academic year. Our vision was that the website would have different sections for all students to post whatever they want, whether it is a paper that someone wrote and is very proud of, a tidbit of creative writing, or just random thoughts. I thought I would actualize this vision because it has a lot to do with our group project on graffiti. Graffiti artists some times create graffiti art for social reasons such as communicating a social, political, or religious message and my website hopefully allows students to do the same. Graffiti also acts as a bulletin board within gangs; similary, the English Student Association will serve as a bulletin board to inform all English students of the happenings within the association and what other students are doing. I was inspired by an episode of my younger cousin's favourite Disney Channel show, The Wizards of Waverly Place. Graffiti artists are often relegated to underground areas due to the illegality of graffiti. I want to create a virtual public space where English students can feel free to post whatever they want, so I am essentially establishing a space where there is potential for students to create digital graffiti in the form of user generated content. The website can also be considered as a part of a subculture because the English Student Association is a small subculture among all the other departments at UBC.

Relations to Chapter 17:
- Explores private versus public space in the digital realm. By creating a website, I hope to create a "public" digital space where students can keep up to date with the activities of the association, and a "private" digital space where students who become weebly members can post whatever they want in the forum section.
- Issues of collaborative authorship: all students are free to read each other's posts and comment, or post their own thoughts.
- Users can post and comment but only under the already created categories, and the executive in charge of managing the website and blog has the ultimate power to veto inappropriate posts. This has to do with genealistic authorship.
- Before the advent of social networking websites like Facebook or Xanga, people kept friendship journals. This demonstrates that online content is still based on things that exist in print.