Sunday, April 14, 2013

Mass Amaturization and Websites

So while I was thinking about what to write this blog about, I started thinking about the different stuff we have done in class and kept thinking about our Web Based Research Project.  Mine is hosted as a Weebly website, which got me to thinking about the whole, mass amaturization stuff we have talked about in class. 

I am by no means an expert when it comes to building websites, I barely know the basics of HTML and CSS (the language used in programming websites), yet I can build a website and host it online for free.  This is interesting to me primarily because my uncle used to be a web site programmer, and built websites for a living, and is very good at it.  The process of mass amaturization is applicable here mainly because I, being a web building amateur, am able to build and host a website.  However, I still find myself wishing I knew as much as my Uncle does because that would make this process significantly easier because I would not be confined to the limits of what Weebly allows me to do.  I would be able to start from scratch.

That being said, it is still possible for me to learn how to do that using HTML and CSS on my own but the time and effort that it would take me to get that final product finished would way out weigh the benefit.  In the end, I think even though there are a lot of "amateurs" who are capable of becoming almost as good as "professionals" there will be still be a place in most industries for "professionals" to do their work. 

10 comments:

  1. I agree I do not think professionalism will go away. It is just like listening to a band just starting out or a band that has been together for ten years. There is no way that a person who has been writing html since high school and is getting paid for it will compare to an amateur who made a decent website off of something such as weebly. They may look good but not be as good or in depth as the profesionals.

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  2. Professionalism will always have a spot in the market I believe because there are always going to be entities that want their product to be extremely professional and unique to them. With mass amateurization non professionals can become very good at making web sites or performing whatever the task may be, however there are still those constraints. They have less credibility, less freedom to create original design and content, and sometimes fewer clients to work with. Allowing amateurs to do things like build websites is awesome and I love that I can do it, I just think too many amateurs consider themselves professionals and that we should be leery of the definition differences in amateur and professional. How and where are the lines drawn?

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  3. I also agree that professionalism is probably here to stay, at least within any context I can think of. As you pointed out, amateurs are ultimately limited by their lack of knowledge in the end, which may make a professional good/service more appealing. For example, I too made a website through Weebly, and while I ultimately happy with it overall, there's still some aspects about it that I'd like to change. But I'm ultimately limited by my lack of knowledge regarding website building, and cannot make those changes, at least not without committing serious time and effort.

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  4. Professionalism, as has been said, is going to stick around. However, I think this brings up one of the benefits of technology that Shirky gets at (ultimately - there are obviously some downsides too) - that anyone can, after a little bit of work, be able to do things decently, whereas before they would have had to undergo a lot more training. I too used weebly and really enjoyed it. I'm a website-making noob, but I was able to grasp the basic tools and create what I think is a decent website.

    I'm still a noob after using Weebly, but having the ability to make a site is better than not having any ability or resources to make one.

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  5. I agree with what you are saying about professionalism and what the majority of the comments discuss. I think that while people are getting better, if you are trained and go to school with it, you most likely are going to out weigh anyone who doesn't. Of course there are exceptions, but for the most part most people who don't study it and make it a profession are not going to take over those who don't.

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  6. I agree with what you are saying and I can relate to being an amateur web-designer. It was interesting when working with weebly and it allowed me to learn a lot of new things. I know that their are a variety of ways to incorporate this website into the classroom. I do not believe this is a professional website, but it is allowing people to learn f=the basics on how to construct a website.

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  7. I can completely agree with this post because my dad was a computer programmer for years and taught himself from textbooks how to use all of the different codes. I, however, am not gifted or even technologically inclined when it comes to using easier sites, such as Weebly. I also suffered through a Dreamweaver programming class this semester that I thought would be the death of me (it wasn't). Just because there are free sites that build your website for you, does not make you a professional and I agree that there will always be jobs for the 'true professionals' in the world of website programming.

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  8. My project will also be hosted on a Weebly-based webpage, so I know what you're talking about. I recently took ID 161, which is the intro-level class for the web design program DreamWeaver. I went in to the class with absolutely zero knowledge or experience with the world of web design. I can say definitively that I'm all for these new, easier-to-use, web design sites, because trying to learn the whole HTML and CSS code is a lot to handle! If I didn't go in for several one-on-one meetings with my instructor, there's a good chance I would have not passed the course. The fact that it was an online course that never actually met might have also contributed to my struggle, but either way I know it's a lot to take in.

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  9. I don't think that fact that it is so easy for so called amateurs to make content is not going to replace professionalism. I do however think it is the stepping stone for producing professionals. Maybe not so much in the website area, but Youtube is perfect example. You can be paid by Youtube to make content for other people, and you don't have to a so called professional. The same goes with music production. I know a lot of very talented musicians that have home studios. They taught themselves how to edit and produce music using software.

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