Tuesday, June 3, 2014


One of the things that really grinds my gears is when I hear that someone serving for the United States military is not able to buy an alcoholic beverage, simply because of their age. At age 17--with the signature of parental guardians--anyone may join the United State military, in any (and every) branch of military. That goes for the Marine Corps, Army, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard, National Guard, etc. Signing up for the U.S. military-- regardless of the branch-- is a noble and honorable thing to do; THIS MEANS THAT YOU ARE AGREEING TO SERVE YOUR COUNTRY, KNOWING FULL WELL THAT YOU MAY DIE TRYING. Yet, someone who is under 21 is unable to walk into a bar, and buy a drink.
In the world today, I find this incredibly backwards, and that a solution should be figured out, soon. Now I understand that "just buying a beer" is not the first--nor the most important--problem on our list of to do's for society, but it is a problem that should be identified and addressed. It is a conflict that has never made sense to me, and if you disagree with my standing on the topic, I truly would like to hear your argument.
11,465 MEN died in the Vietnam War, before their 21st Birthday. (Disregarding jurisdiction in Vietnam, and the lower drinking age) these MEN were never able to fully experience freedom; even in the face of dying for the freedom of others.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Welcome to Fake News

I think that people are not deciding to become informed, because they don't have the drive to do so. We have busy lives. That is a fact. Americans are hard working, they have long days, and even after they come home, they still have things to tend to; families, yard-work, social lives. In this day and age, people don't have the time, nor the effort to get involved with something that they aren't already interested in. That is why-- I believe-- that news corporations should change the way they present the news to us, to both get better ratings/more viewers, and to create more well rounded--politically-- informed citizens. In reality, it's a win, win for the both of us, they make more money, and we become a more tightly knit country. It's really kind of simple. We already know that those who are more informed--generally-- are getting their information from satirical tv shows, like the Colbert Report or The Daily Show with Jon Stewart.
Why do these shows produce such great results? It's simple. Satire gets people attention. Even since it was first displayed in Jonathan Swift's book, A Modest Proposal. Bottom line, IT WORKS. People become interested immediately, whether it be from the absurd concept, or the way the audience relates (sometimes both).
Here is Reed and I's piece of Satire which, though it was not conventional, was incredibly it got results; quickly.
High Schoolers Get Boosted Self Confidence with False Sense of Writing Ability

The Hoofprint has a brand new idea to quickly spread around current school news! They've decided that the best way to represent our talented BHS community and the current events that surround it, is to let a bunch of inexperienced high school writers publish stories on a widely read online news source without any monitoring. And get this, there’s a required amount of stories that you must write and publish over the course of the term, affecting the quality of your stories drastically. If you don’t want to take extra time to write a quality paper outside of the very limited work time you receive, then there’s a simple solution, you get a bad grade.  Everyone's stories get published, no matter the quality of their work, because we want everyone to feel good about themselves. Participation medals for everybody!! Quantity over quality, that’s what we’re always told as kids, right?

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Who Creates Your Reality?

Since this blog goes back to choice--yet again-- I feel that it all comes down to the degree of choice that us newsreaders have, regarding the way that we obtain our news. This means that all of us have the opportunity to determine-- the ever so infinite-- amount of choices we have, of obtaining the news we want, from who we want. This is enabling people of all age, sex, shape, and size to cherry pick the information they want to be relayed to them, simply based on their opinions regarding all aspects of media including; politics, science, entertainment, weather, and sports. Now comes the positives (and the eminent negatives). This makes the news reader very happy. It gives them power; the power of choice. Thus making them feel important-- or even taking their 'substantial' role to such a media corporation, to an extreme. Negatively however, (in my opinion) I feel overtops the positive aspect(s). This choice given to the reader will construct an audience that is-- potentially-- more closed minded, more ignorant, (and most concerning) less informed.
Though I am fighting against this choiceful 'cause', I am not practicing-- or am intent on practicing-- going against this in the future. With that being said, I hope to live in a world as an adult that is comfortable with obtaining his news from such "prehistoric" sources, like the daily newspaper. I'm going to be honest with you, I am fearful of the lucrative "digital age". I feel that it is an amount of power and responsibility that we are either too immature or inexperienced to harness/control. And as we enter this new frontier, I feel that we must tread lightly, as I do not have too much faith for our ability to control this newborn power.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014


Throughout this past week, I obtained all of my news information from strictly one source, and one source only. msn.com . Ever since I first became able to type, I remember this being our computer's homepage, and I'll be honest, I always feel a tad bit reminiscent when viewing its homepage. This-- along with enjoying it's overall 'bright'/positive design-- is the reason that I chose to temporarily 'subscribe' to msn, and only msn for one whole week.
In my opinion, people choose to get their news sources from routine. Routine is why people do what they do, and whether it is negative or positive, a whole lot of people don't like to get out of their routine(s). This includes their News source. For example, people who have been reading the star and trib for the majority of their life (typically senior folk) are far less likely to 'change their ways'. And in the same sense, a teenager who is an avid Reddit or Facebook user would not typically read a newspaper everyday. It is for these reasons that I feel people get their news based on the way(s) that they have done their lives in the past. IT'S ALL BASED UPON ROUTINE (in my opinion).
In the same sense, the ways in which people get their news are also determined by the news in which they-- in particular-- like to read; topics. For example, I enjoy msn.com for the reasons stated above, along with the fact that they have an entire section of news that is completely loyal to Automotive news, and they update this section of their website daily. This causes people-- like me-- to be particularly intrigued in the news being presented to them.
Now comes my opinionated section. I feel that basing someone's 'news intelligence' by taking a quiz that is composed of merely information that has been 'selected' by a certain group of people. Now, my upcoming 'statement' can be applied to many things (read this abstractly, out of context). Determining your intelligence on current news by topics/situations that are not of your importance, or worth your time are obsolete to your informed state. I feel that people should understand that being informed shouldn't be looked at in a standardized vision, but in a relative way. Well, that's how I feel at least.

Monday, April 14, 2014


 At the beginning of this "chapter" in Journalism 2, I was not very excited-- nor ambitious-- to be creating spreads on the computer. I found it very frustrating and pointless to be doing this. Needless to stay I didn't enjoy it. However, after we were done with the 40 minute design challenge, I felt like there was much more to be
done when the buzzer went off. This gave me a 'jump start' to come at this from a different angle, and really stay disciplined and try my all. I started by trashing my whole 40 minute challenge spread, and decided to design a spread that I had read often, and was very familiar with; Car magazines. This is really when I started to like this design thing because I was creating one regarding what I was already so fond of. From there, I tried my best, and was very particular in certain design habits. Throughout this time I became much more familiar with Photoshop and InDesign. After it was all said and done, I really liked my spread, and was extremely glad I had changed my approach to computer aided design.
       Design is everything. Design can make or break anything. Arguably, Journalism and publication design is the most fierce environment where it means absolutely everything; live or die. If the design is not eye appealing, or has a "could be better" characteristic with it, it will not last. It can sell products, or make you feel comfortable about the company that designed it for you. If something is not eye appealing, it will be obsolete to people.
        Perhaps the most important thing that this has taught me is that designs are designed to appeal to you, subconsciously. The audience doesn't have to break down or critical think about anything that they look at. In fact, people can determine if they like it or not in a matter of seconds, with nothing more than a glance.
This "chapter" has been really eye opening to me, and I now find myself identifying things that I would change, that I feel would make them more well designed and eye appealing.
    In conclusion, the world of design takes place in a subconscious state, that is fierce, ruthless, and exciting; design will never die.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

And No One Ever Found Out.

This all starts back in the early 1960's with my Grandmother, we'll call her 'Grandma', as she wanted her name to be disclosed. I'll let you in on some background information, my Great Grandfather (Grandma's Father) was a very strict Catholic man, who was also known for his excessive drinking and temper. This mix is the exact kind of man that you didn't particularly want to piss off. Despite what you hear, he wasn't a bad man, and was very successful. However, keep in mind it was a VERY different time.
Back in Grandma's teenage years, she lived under a roof of very successful, and very strict parents. Along with some other stories she has 'de-classified' with me. So, naturally, she and her other 5 siblings (2 Brothers & 3 Sisters) found ways to get into mischief any way they could.
When Grandma was a Junior to Senior High School student, they found this mischief often at their cabin, on Gull Lake, in Brainerd. Traveling there often, and being an avid Church-going family, they owned a boat, that they-- along with many other families--would use to travel to and from Church. Though you could also take the car to Church, the kids--as well as some of the parents--felt as though it was a 'treat'.
A bunch of well dressed, strict Catholics, that rely on a boat to get to Church, my Grandmother and her brothers and sisters saw this as the perfect time to pull a prank.
"We would go out at night--later than we should have been--and we would go around to all of the boats on the lake, and pull the [drain] plugs out," Says Grandma with a chuckle.
"But, to stay out of trouble we had to sink my Dad's boat too."
Not long after all the boats had been 'sunk', they decided to head off back to the cabin and get some sleep before morning service. "Since there were so many of us, half had to go in the boat, and the other half in the car," Said Grandma. And so everyone got all ready, dressed in their 'Sunday best', as they prepared to walk out of the cabin, and head to Church.
"We couldn't believe the look on our dad's face!" said Grandma. "But we didn't dare to tell him or anyone else that it was us,"
"Anyways, we all got to Church and saw that everyone was talking about their 'sunken' boats. And my Dad was surprised to see that it wasn't just them," said Grandma.
In the midst of all this, the kids kept quiet, while the adults conversed about their 'vandalism'. "We DID keep a pretty straight face," said Grandma. "Well, we had to. Or we would have been killed."
"But I do remember that we didn't like one family, so we decided not to sink theirs," said Grandma. "And you can imagine what kind of blame that family got when everyone else saw they were the only ones that traveled by boat."
But other than some "light damage," everything was fine, and no one found out. "But I do think there were probably a few Gas cans floating about,"
And no one ever found out.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014


Choice is the part that makes up the majority of our lives nowadays. Choice is the ability to go down different paths, experience life in a different aspect, and live out our lives with a sense of freedom. Though choice has been the most important thing in our culture since its start, I think that choice is taking on a new definition. In my opinion, I see this definition most in journalism. Technology has made an impact on everything, and--in most cases-- has made it better. I BELIEVE THAT THE ABILITY OF CHOICE IS GOING TO MAKE JOURNALISM BETTER. However, like any new 'feature', it is going to take a great deal of time before we 'sort out the bugs' and master it. With this large window of time, I anticipate that we will experience many failures, as well as successes, and many new rules will be created for this aspect of journalism that is currently in  a newborn--virtual--frontier. 
This relates to Journalism directly, for this is what is happening in the world today. We are given choices. Choices on what to read, how to read it, and why to read it. But the question is, is this choice good for it?
To the best of my understanding is that the ability to CHOOSE enables us to do different things, and read different news. News--like all other aspects of life--is being affected by this change. However, I don't think that us, as people, are fully capable of harnessing all of the responsibility that choice has to offer, yet. With that being said, I believe that we are headed in an exciting direction that will change the world one piece at a time. But if I said that there isn't going to be any failures, infamous incidents, or mishaps, I'd be lying to you.

Currently, I find that the biggest downfalls with the state of choice we are in now is that we have the ability to choose what we want to read, causing us to do just that. Though this allows companies to identify their audience more easily and/or draw them in, this is an ineffective way for people to be well informed of the world around them.

We have come a long way, but we have an even farther way to go. 

This Guy Knows.