Tuesday, 23 March 2010

Question 7

What do you feel you have learnt in the progression from it to the full product?
From looking back at my preliminary task, I think I have a wider knowledge on a variety of different software which made my full project a lot better then my school website. I was also more comfortable with making my drug help website as it was more interesting than a school website, which encouraged me to design my website to a better standard and to put more time and effort into making my website appeal to my audience. As both the websites were aimed at different things, the designs of the websites were completely different compared to each other. This is because they are both aiming at different types of people and are trying to appeal to their audience in a different way, for example, the school website had to have formal written language as is it trying to attract parents and their children to want to come to the school. On the other hand, the drug website is a charity which is aimed at young people who are experimenting with drugs and want to come out of their addictions. These differences are shown in the written language, the layout and the colours.

I have developed my skills hugely since the preliminary website as I had time and practice to get used to the software and learn how to use them to make my website a functional website which looked as professional as I could make it. I also studied more websites which were similar to mine to show me different ways in which I could attract my audience and how to get across to them in my written language. However, during the construction of my website and looking at the final piece I can see it must be a lot harder for professionals to make sure their websites are good enough to publish with high-quality pictures, videos and a fully-functional website that will please their audience.

Question 6

What have you learned about technologies from the process of constructing this product?
The things I have learnt will be very helpful for me in the future as I have widened my knowledge on popular programs and on an Apple Mac computer. Things I have learnt are:

iWeb: This was the program in which I constructed my website on even though I had no experience in using it, however, it was easy for me to adapt to as the methods I was using were repetitive and the toolbars were easy to use. I also had no experience with Apple Mac computers so this was a whole new system for me to get used to, which I picked up quickly and became comfortable with using it.

Photoshop/Photographs: I had very little knowledge on Photoshop, but I knew a lot more then I did for any other program I used during this project. Some photos I took were ta
ken by the school camera as it is the best way to get a good picture, however, some of my photos were taken by a simple mobile phone which were still a good enough quality for my website. On Photoshop I learnt how to use the red-eye detector and how to change the background of my pictures to match the background. This is an asset to my website as it makes the quality look much better, making my website look professional and organised.
This photograph is eye-catching as there is a luminous coloured grinder which would catch the audiences attention, and it also has a joint and two baggies which are some of the main instruments people need to smoke cannabis. The positioning of each object makes them clearly stand out against each other, with help from the dark background to make it easy for people to see what the picture is symbolizing.

Design: During the process of constructing my website I also learnt that one of the main factors of a good website is the layout as it is one of the main things which attracts the audience. To make sure I was doing this to my best ability, I had to change my layout to make sure it looked organised and fun without being too busy. Also, I had to make sure the layout suited my target audience; otherwise I would not be able to get through to my audience which means they would not donate to my charity.

Question 5

How did you attract/address your audience?
The way in which I have attracted my audience is mostly by my layout, the design of my website and the small pieces of useful information. The language is quite informal as the pieces of information are in short paragraphs, so the reader has a good idea of what the drug is and is not put off by a large piece of writing which they would not even bother reading. The layout is simple and colourful, with links to the pages on my homepage and on every alphabet’s page there is a list of links at the bottom to locate them to another letter of their choice.

My website also has stories from people who have experienced going through an addiction, people who have experienced watching someone live off their addiction and the effects which occurred from the constant drug abuse. The layouts of the A-Z pages are all the s
ame with pictures on every page, which will draw the audience’s attention as the pages are bright and attractive with enough information to make the audience aware of the effects but not too much so they do not get bored. I hope my audience will appreciate my website, enjoy spending their time on it and think of it as a useful source. I also hope they think of my website as a reliable and important charity, so they will donate to people who are in these types of situation to help them lead a better life.

Question 4

Who Would the Audience be for your Media Product?
The construction of my site will attract a young audience between the ages of 16 – late 20’s because they are the people who are most likely to experience smoking cannabis or taking others drugs. My survey also proves that mainly people between this age group have more experience with drugs as it is easy to access and people of this age usually take drugs socially. My websites layout will also attract my audience because it’s simple, colourful and the pages have the information spread out clearly. The written language on my site also appeals to a young audience because it is brief but it contains the information they want to know. The background on my website is pale, so that it is calm and so my text and images stand out on the page.
The design of my website will also attract my audience because it is plain but interesting, with videos, rollovers, images and a reasonable font size and text. The positioning of images and text on my website are clear and simple, so the audience can locate pages on my website easily, with the information they need clearly on the page.

Question 3

What kind of media institution might distribute your website and why?
I think my website would be distributed by other drug help websites and even TV websites that have focused on drugs and their addiction; to show the audience that they care about the situation and they want to do the best they can to help people who are trying to pull themselves out of their addiction. Popular search engine websites would also be a good way of distributing my website, as many people use them as a quick way to find information. Most companies would compensate by advertising my website in their search engine, if my website contains a small search bar or link back to their homepage. This would persuade the company to promote my website as it would increase the popularity of their search engine, giving them a larger audience with more hits on their pages.
TV and radio would also be a good way of distributing my website because they are very popular. If I advertised my website it would draw in a much larger audience as many people watch TV or listen to the radio on a daily basis. Even though this is the most costly way to advertise, it would take very little time to earn the money back as many people will be listening to the adverts, hopefully making them want to donate to my website.

Question 2

How does your media product represent particular social groups?
The particular group in which my website would represent is the youth of today as most of them are experimenting with drugs, the most popular one being cannabis. The layout is simple and colourful which shows the audience it is made for a young audience who are either experimenting with drugs to warn them of the effects or to warn people before they have tried the drugs to hopefully change their minds about going in that direction. However, it is aimed at all classes of people because all social classes are using drugs whether they are rich, poor, living on an estate or in a mansion. The aspects of my website that show this are; the bright colours, the simple layout and the small pieces of text which include all the information the audience needs to know about the drugs. This is because, the bright colours make the website fun and interesting without too much information to put the audience off from reading the information my website contains. The style of written language is more informal than formal as young adults are most likely to skim through long pieces of information, whereas my website contains short pieces of information, which is put into as little writing as possible so the audience can gain the information quickly and easily without getting bored with the content.

Question 1

In What Ways Does Your Media Product Use, Develop or Challenge Forms and Conventions of Real Media Products?
From my research I have found different types of conventions such as; the name of the charity at the top of the page, an image of what they are focusing at, audio, videos, and links to pages listed somewhere on the page. Other conventions are the main colours of the website and the written language as it makes it appeal to the audience they are focusing at. On my website I have used some of these conventions such as, the name of my website is at the top of the page with a picture of my main focus next to it. The background is green as my main focus is towards cannabis, with blue writing which makes the text stand out against the background. I have also used a video and audio on my website to attract my audience as it makes the website more active and appealing. The video is in the centre of the page with the links underneath it and the charities contact information on top just under the charities name. My websites also contains an A-Z of the most popular drugs and some of the effects which may occur after doing them which would appeal to my audience because its quick and easy to read but will tell you the main effects. My third page is somewhere where my audience can tell their own stories so other people can see how drugs affect families and the user. This may help people to actually realise how much they are affecting their lives and will hopefully encourage them to share their stories and to overcome their addiction.

My website is different from other drug charity websites because it is mainly focused at people who are addicted to cannabis. Also, my website has its own original layout with a video on the main page to draw my audience’s attention. The links are at the bottom of the main image going across the page, whereas the other websites have the links down the side of the page. Comparisons between my website and others I have seen on the web are; my website contains the same type of information and pages for example, there are pages where you can write about your own personal stories and read others. Another comparison is I have the name of the charity as a header with an image of its main focus somewhere near it on the page which is a convention most websites have.