Activism in the Digital Age

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Class, Tues, 4/23

Digital Essays 2013

Presentations: Affordances and Constraints


Interior Landscapes




Social Trends

Digital Arcade

I’ve enjoyed working with all of you! Keep writing, and keep in touch!


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After spending most of high school being designated as a “total hippie” and the majority of my college career as “such a hipster,” I decided to further explore the similarities between these two subcultures.


While the two subcultural movements share similarities in name, my aim was to find other points at which to compare and contrast them. As someone interested in blogging and design, I hoped to do so in the most aesthetically-pleasing way possible.

I tried to use many different “affordances” in order to make my essay interactive and dynamic, and hoped that the layout would provide readers with many different access points. You can view my final digital essay here.

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“gypsy”: a social exploration

Where I live in South Carolina, there is a population of gypsies (Irish Travelers). The neighborhood I moved into 5 years ago is actually adjacent to Murphy Village, the “camp” where many Travelers live. At that point, I started to hear a lot more about them. The stories circulating were harsh, common, and told with certainty. The rhetoric struck me–what’s with these openly discriminatory attitudes? Kind of uncommon for polite society these days.

From that point, I worked backwards, learning more and more about the broader historical “gypsy” narrative and the diverse groups to which the term applies. This was news to me, so I was curious about others perceptions of gypsy as an identity or term and locating a representational source for those perceptions.


The resulting multimedia piece attempts to grapple with these questions. It is aided by the cultural theory of representation avowed by Stuart Hall and hopefully offers some worthwhile commentary on the real world danger in stereotypes writ large.

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Hurry Up and Wait! The Life and (potential) Adventures of Movie Extras.


The picture above (click on it to access the digital essay), is a screen shot from the 2010 Walt Disney film Secretariat. In this scene I play the part of a security guard–that’s me on the right side of the screen.

It was a fluke…the first time I worked as an extra in a movie. My wife read a story, and an advertisement, in our local newspaper for an audition and she said “Let’s go try out for this movie.” I thought she was kidding. Next thing I knew we were in the movie. I had a great experience, I learned a lot, and I met some wonderful people. Little did my wife know how much our lives would change because of her suggestion.

Much of our personal story, and the stories of others entertainment industry professionals serve as case studies in this digital essay. If you are interested in the entertainment industry I am sure you will enjoy some of the stories and information I have included. Even if you are not directly interested in the entertainment industry, you still might find some insight about the importance of networking with other professionals that will be applicable to your career ambitions.

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Google G

My digital essay, iAdvertising: How the Digital Age is Making Internet Advertising All About YOU, evolved from my early attempts at tracking how print advertising has changed throughout history. This version takes a more user-heavy focus, exploring how popular sites such as Google and Facebook collect our data and use it to target specific ads at us. Much of the media is grounded in screenshots of my own perusing.

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