Whenever the words “internet” and “writing” are put together, I get nervous. Perhaps it partially paranoia, but I have had some prior experience in writing on the internet that freak me out. Firstly, ever since I was a younger child, I created my first website. I uploaded short stories, put up comics, pictures, links, video, and a primitive version of a blog. Essentially, I was creating the type of portfolio that we are making for this class. Later on, I began exploring the realms of online journals. I enjoy reading the journals of my friends and I also wanted people to read my journal. However, in high school, with the goal of college admissions, I began to learn that everything we put out onto the internet is there forever. And I hate that feeling of non-changing permanence. It freaks me out. That’s why I always prefer the traditional writing forms of essays because you write on paper and turn it in. There is essentially one copy and one reader. I could burn it if I want no one else in the world to find it or I can always change it without really causing harm.
However, from my experiences this year, I felt like a novice swimmer being pushed off the diving board. I realized that there is no point hesitating and waiting on the sideline before jumping into the pool called the internet. Once you put out something onto the web and publish it, you have to move on and you can only improve. Essentially, this aspect feels different from traditional essay writing. When your writing has the possibility to go out of control, it only serves what the purpose of writing is supposed to serve. It communicates and has more power in new media.
I think what new media has taught me is that it is okay to write imperfect things. It is okay to mess out because in the end, when I finally completed something great it would be worth all those terrible writing floating in the internet universe. And even if someone finds these writings and judges me, I have to learn to take it and use it constructively or, if it easier, just ignore it.
With traditional writing, I am expecting criticism and some sort of result such as a grade, publication, or feedback because I writing it with a purpose. Traditional writing feels safe to me because I have done the process countless times. I have had experience more or the less the same result from writing the paper. However, I am not discounting traditional writing methods. There is something great about seeing a beautifully written essay after correction from the feedbacks. However, I should be open to both.