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4/25/2004

but i don't wanna study 



What Classic Movie Are You?
personality tests by similarminds.com


at first i got 'wuthering heights' but i thought that was lame so i changed some answers and voila! yup, i'm a cheater.


punk rock university for rural ontarians. 

I'm supposed to be studying right now, but I just received an interesting link in my email which I thought I'd share with you all. I'm going to write a real entry about it in a couple of days but for now I'll just let you see it for yourself.

4/23/2004

ok fine then 

since all the cool kids seem to be doing it, we're going to play this 'ask three questions' game too. so here's your chance to get to know the girls at digitaldownpour a little better. want to know why allie went nuts at the digital downpour party? always wondered if mira is secretly a karaoke genius disguised as a terrible singer? want to know the secret incredients to our 'drink of death'? sure you do. just ask us each three questions in the comments and we will answer shortly.

4/18/2004

The digitaldownpour Guide to Writing Papers 

Many of our loyal readers are probably writing papers at this time. Myself included. I have taken it upon myself to help you in your struggle by telling you all the things that I do to help me write a paper.

1. A given: do not start paper until 1 day prior to the due date.

2. Make sure that day is a Sunday during exams, when no computer labs are open, save the PC lab in the Loyola library where you are only supposed to work for 30 minutes or less.

3. Check your email. Write emails. Your friends and family need to hear from you at this time. Your sister is dying to know if it was, indeed, a chick or a dude that you saw on the bus this morning.

4. Check your email every five minutes while writing the paper. Your prof may be writing to tell you that you have an extension.

5. Read the buddyhead rules of rock and the buddyhead rules for audiences of rock. They are both very old and somewhat out of date, not to mention that you have read them before, but who knows, they might contain some helpful insight into your topic. (especially if it is sociology!)

6. Check all of the weblogs that are linked to digitaldownpour several times. Reload digitaldownpour every five minutes, after checking your email. Don't be afraid to leave extra-long comments on them about the dream you had last night, or why you don't like holding hands.

7. Take off your watch and shoes, and eat a banana muffin. You deserve it.

8. Try writing a blog entry. It will be productive in the long run.

4/16/2004

this is wack 

ok so I know i already put a link to these videos in an earlier post, but I don't think anyone actually read our blog back then. plus this video may just be the most wack thing ever.

4/14/2004

bloggers gone wild: the video 

new and improved!
but still a little rough. click here.

thanks to jer for the space.

4/13/2004

digital booze 



see more digital downpour party photos here.

emily said something funny (this is not even a worthwhile post.) 

"Let's just hope the dandylions didn't have pesticides on them."


4/12/2004

say what? 

here are some memorable quotes from friday's coms party. most of them are allie's cause she is hilarious.


"Oh, yea, I out crazied them good!"
- allie, on outcrazying the crazy people in the park.

"I tought I was just drunk."
- allie, on why she didn't notice that her glasses were covered in muck.

"Joffe's downstairs flirting with that band....Yea he's networking"
-em, on where joffe is.

"I want to call digital downpour!"
- allie, flustered that she didn't have the number for our blog.

photos and bloggers gone wild video coming soon!

4/09/2004

Self-eval 

From the first day of blogging with Allie, I knew I was in for one wild ride. But just how wild, I could never have guessed. The endless giggling over whether to call our new web journal ‘a streetcar named blog’ or ‘blogcicle’ pretty much set the tone for the rest of the semester. But soon, we sobered up long enough to stumble upon a book of Haiku lying by my computer, page 14-

Winter downpour,
even the monkey
needs a raincoat.

-and our much loved home away from home, digital downpour, was born.

While I think I’ve kept pretty much the same tone of voice since the beginning, my early entries were a bit random and only slightly related to the class. My posts were often left on the back burner while I fiddled with the layout of our blog, adding some colours here, a comments link there and a few photos scattered in between. But, eventually, I shaped up and started to relate my posts directly to the readings and was (usually) getting at some kind of point towards the end.

I must say, I’m very happy with how this whole blog experience turned out. At the beginning of the semester I barely knew what a blog was and now every other word out of my mouth is blog this or blog that… well not quite, but it may as well be.

My favourite post of mine is probably ‘Objective Journalism vs. Journalistic Activism’, inspired by the GNN guest speaker. As for my favourite other blog, it’s hard to choose just one cause there are so many awesome bloggers in the class. Basically, if it’s on our list of blog links on the left, then it rocks. Special shout outs to Em, Jerry and Mike and Jer’s class and photo blog.

An even more special shout out goes to digital downpour's very own queen of sarcasm, Allie. A gal couldn't ask for a better blog-buddy than she.

So while Coms 256 may be over, digital downpour is just geting started, and we're just going to keep on blogging like there's no tomorow. Just you try to stop us.

4/08/2004

Media Hegemony and the American Dream 

Three simple steps to living the American Dream:
1. Start with a little.
2. Work hard or get lucky.
3. End up with a lot (and live happily ever after).

So I’m reading The Gazette yesterday and a headline in the business section catches my eye: ‘Trump’s hit reality show pushes American dream’. A vague recollection of a short lived class discussion comes to mind in which one student was heard to say "it happens everyday". Well, that may be true, but I’m not convinced. As far as I’m concerned, the question isn’t whether ‘rags to riches’ success stories are daily occurings or not but rather why the mainstream media is so set on convincing us that they are?

The Gazette article went on, not to critique the Trump show at all, but to focus on how NYC tourists are now flocking to the Trump Towers with their cameras, wanting to re-enact the "You’re fired!" catch phrase, which, by the way, may soon be copyrighted property of Trump himself.

The whole concept of ‘The Apprentice’ is based on glorifying material wealth as a measure of success and happiness as do most ads on mainstream television. You’re not complete. You need more stuff. Why don’t you buy this new car? Of course you can afford it cause you’re going to make it rich some day.

But where are all the reality shows about people who don't make it rich? Real people who work hard all their lives and still don't end up any better off, financially at least, than when they began. This obviously doesn't fit with the dominant ideologies the media wants to present, and it certainly wouldn't sell as many products as the escapist breed of reality shows which make people envious of what they see on tv.

So, getting back to my original question of why the media is so intent on perpetuating the belief that the average Joe can become a millionaire, could it be because the notion of the American Dream as a metanarrative of "common sense" encourages the ‘more is better’ mentality, in turn driving the consumer-tendencies in all of us?

Oh yeah. The article also plugs Trump’s new book, aptly titled How to Get Rich. Because we all know it’s as easy as one, two, three.


4/07/2004

So long, farewell, auf Wiedersehen, goodbye. 

This marks the end of an era. An era of class-related blogging. Let's take a look back on the last few months. Here, from my very first blog entry ever: "This weblog was created as part of a Digital Communications Media project and will be updated weekly with observations and comments relating to this class. It will be extremely interesting and I recommend you check in daily...Just in case." Little did I know how prophetic that statement was to be. Blogging, up until January, was just something that Jer talked about all the time, and nobody else really seemed to get it. I myself was once heard to say that "blogs are for weiners." Well, wrap me in a bun and slather me with mustard, because I am now, officially, a blogger.

As for tone of voice... I think it changes a bit from entry to entry, but the more comfortable I become with the blogging medium, the easier it becomes to say the things I want to say. I really did find myself changing over the past few months after reading about some of the very startling/intelligent/amusing things that are going on in the world of digital media. I went to see The Yes-Men. I wrote my first ever letter to the editor. I thought about the effects of corporations on technology and consumers in my personal favourite entry: the more I know the less I understand.(name that tune...)

That said, I must give mad props to my co-blogger, Mira. Mira is responsible for all of the things that make this blog so beautiful, the pictures, the poll, and our now infamous counter on the bottom lefthand side of the screen. Mira, it's been a pleasure doing class-related blogging with you, and the future of digitaldownpour has never looked brighter (merchandise coming soon.)

Other class blogs worth checking out: Jerry and Mike's, Emily's, Jer's (which goes far beyond class blogging) and Mikey B's are all wonderful in very different ways. See the links on the left.

So is this the end? Far from it. I may be trading in my metropass for a chevy pickup, and the city streets for the back forty acres, but I plan to spread the good word that is blog all over rural Ontario, all summer long. To our loyal reader: all the best in Cali. To the rest of you:

Leave comments.

4/03/2004

The digitaldownpour Guide to Popularity (Patent Pending) 

Since this blog is becoming quite popular on the Coms Studies circuit (see the counter on the bottom lefthand side of the page), I believe it is up to Mira and I to help the kids out with what to think and say to they can be popular at parties. So here, in no particular order, is a comprehensive guide to making friends in Communications, and keeping them.

1. You don't win friends with satire. Nobody likes somebody who makes fun of them. Do you really think that the people who work at the copyrighting office appreciated Kembrew McLeod wasting their time with his conceited little prank? No way. And there is no doubt in my mind that his "Cease and Desist" letter to the AT&T corporation for using his trademarked phrase "freedom of expression" didn't go over too well with them. Kembrew McLeod has made plenty of enemies with his satire of Intellectual Property Law. He's obviously not changing the world, and you just know that if he brought this up at a party everyone would find him ridiculous. Which reminds me:

2. Nobody likes a lefty. If you have opposition to corporate media ownership, forget about it. Who do you think is going to pay the bills when you graduate? The Guerilla News Network? Adbusters? No sir. The Big Six.That's who. Everyone else in Communications knows and accepts this, and they aren't going to like you if you tell them you plan on being an "Independent Media Maker". They will laugh at you, then not give you their telephone number for fear of being asked to fund one of your "Social Commentaries". Don't even get me started on pointless small scale culture jamming.

3. If Apple makes it, you need it. There is no better way to make friends with Coms students than by purchasing the latest and greatest in techie gear! When you see them ooh and ahh in admiration over your brand new powerbook, you'll know you've just made friends for life. Oh, and just to point out the obvious:

4. Never insult Apple products in the vicinity of a Communications student. Unless you enjoy not getting invited to parties, of course. The company can do no wrong, and the sooner you realize this, the happier you'll be.

5. Try to use the following words in everyday conversation: Hegemony, Popular Discourse, Postmodern, Bricolage, Hypertext Markup Language, Analog, Digital, Aura. Don't worry about using them in an appropriate manner right off the bat. Coms students will appreciate the fact that you know these words, and will invite you over for dinner and a documentary.

6. Don't be afraid to be a name dropper. Steve Wozniak, Steve Jobs, John Oswald, Marshall McLuhan, William Gibson, Ezra Winton, Peter Van Wyck, Charles Babbage and Ada Lovelace are all great convo starters at a Coms party! Give them a go.

Well, there you have it. Six easy steps to being the most popular kid in Communications Studies. Try them out, I'm almost 100% positive that you will be completely satisfied with the results.

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