This article reveals new facets of the blog as a source of information. The paper discusses the main issues related to the blog: the impact on the information space of young people, the advantages and disadvantages of this resource, the main functions. The predominance of the advantages of the blog over the disadvantages shows the importance of the resource under study in the youth environment. Using a wide range of methods used in our work, we were able to confirm the hypothesis about the importance of a blog and dispel traditional beliefs about the negative impact of new sources of information on the younger generation. One of the main tasks is to confirm the fact that the blog is massive in the informational media of young people. As it is shown by polls and surveys, the blog takes a strong leading position in this matter. An equally important aspect is the allocation of cargo functions of the blog. The function of auto-communication, which came to the fore, emphasizes the importance of self-realization of young people in the eyes of other people. In this case, the blogosphere becomes an excellent place to complete the task. Having studied the youth information space, we found out how much influence blogs have on the perception of information by the younger generation. Regardless of gender, students are more sensitive to transmitted messages in the context of the media sphere. Most young people selflessly trust the flow of information transmitted through blogs.
Keywords: Blogamateur journalismthe presentation of informationthe blogosphereand blogger
Informatization of modern society is marked by the emergence of a new level of information and communication technology such as the Internet. As one of the most common forms of communication, this way of communication manifests itself as a fundamentally different from other ways of communication channel of human interaction. Without any doubt, it happens due to the opportunities provided by the Internet.
Reasons for widespread use of Internet
There are some reasons of the Internet popularity. The first one is that the Internet is open to global communication. Secondly, the possibilities of feedback are significantly expanded. Due to the third reason, there is widespread use of computer technology in various spheres of human life, for example, in the political process (Bronnikov, 2015). However, all new things often cause distrust, especially if it affects the formation of personality. It’s very difficult to dispel traditional ideas about the negative impact of new media on the information space of young people (Duffy & Bruns, 2006), in particular it applies the blog (Evsukova & Germasheva, 2015). More and more there are such discussed issues as: what is the impact of the blog on the information space of young people (Stepp, 2006) or do young people perceive blogs as a reliable source (Tomina, 2016). Internet resources are divided into commercial, information and web services (Bronnikov, 2017). Our article explores the impact of new media on the information space of young people, so we decided to pay attention to one of the information Internet resources such as blog.
Blog - advantages and disadvantages
The term "weblog" was first used by Barger (1993), as a network magazine from the English "a log of the web". In its simplest form, a blog is a website with dated entries presented in reverse chronological order and published online.
The growing popularity of blogs nowadays is due to the fact that it is regarded as a source of more recent, truthful and reliable information, and bloggers themselves are perceived by others (Schiano, Nardi, Gumbrecht, & Swartz, 2004), especially those who study as "people's experts", as they are often ordinary people among us (Moorman, 2004). The speed of dissemination of information and the number of views is of great importance in the Internet space too, so bloggers try to touch only hot news, attracting more readers. The information presented by them is structured in such a way that even with a cursory reading, the reader "is clung" by the proposed content.
Moreover, Sharapova (2014) considers a blog not just as a way to disseminate information, but as a new marketing and communication tool, which provides an opportunity to transfer the necessary information from the author of the blog to the reader that also attracts our attention.
Based on the above, we consider it’s necessary to focus in our work on the advantages and disadvantages of the studied type of Internet resource, as well as to present its functions.
Advantages of blogs:
Among the advantages of the blog, distinguishing it from the traditional media, it is advisable to note the following:
1.ease of publication;
2.extensive search capabilities;
4.speed of information dissemination;
5.possibility of direct connection with the source;
6.the relationship between sources of information;
7.constant updating of information;
8.ability to organize content in chronological order.
Disadvantages of blogs:
The disadvantages are presented by the following:
the deliberate distortion of information, the communication parties can verify its validity;
the simulation of cohesion, when the number of friends or participants is too large to keep in touch with everyone, and low response when transferring communication from the network to the meeting;
a huge amount of destructive information in social networks and the lack of any protection from its dissemination and impact;
viewing pages on social networks is a habit;
obsessive and sold contacts;
the mismatch of intention-agreement with the idea and real action – implementation of the idea (weakness in reaction);
lack of personal responsibility (Novgorodtseva & Sivkova, 2015).
One of the priorities of the choice of blog information is the structure of the text, as it is mentioned above, at the same time, the presented hypertext gives a diffuse and fragmentary perception of information by the user.
In addition, reading the information from the blog, it is difficult not to notice that the authors constantly express their opinion, which can’t, but affect the content of this Internet resource, analysing which, the reader not only forms his idea of the author's competence and trust in him, but also creates his opinion on the basis of the information he reads (Kobzeva, 2014). This interaction with the user forms the basis or platform for the emergence of diverse communities, not all of which adhere to the traditional foundations of society (Akkubinova & Urazgalieva, 2015). Also, the disadvantages of the studied object include “virtual identity of the author” (Grishaeva, 2015), that raises doubts about the reliability of the source too.
Despite the shortcomings of blogs, this type of communication is put on a par with the main traditional media. Is it possible to completely replace conventional media blogs, due to their growing popularity? This issue has repeatedly been actively discussed by scientists. If you put on the" scales " characteristics of the blog and traditional media, it should be noted that blogs really have a number of advantages. This focus on communication with the user, and the breadth of the audience, and the speed of coverage of events, and sometimes the uniqueness of the information compared to the official media. However, uncertainty about the quality of the presented information outweighs this "scale" in the direction of traditional media, which touch on topical issues, checking all the facts and putting forward a strong judgment. From our point of view, blogs are certainly more successful than traditional media, but we would like to note that this is to what extent connected with the fashion for this type of resource. This phenomenon is interpreted as "new journalism", because with the help of blogging the democratization of traditional media happens. Blog really takes a certain place among the media, complementing them, as the advantages of one type compensate for the shortcomings of the other, and vice versa.
Functions of blogs
Blogs are quite functional. The main functions have two directions:
Moreover, social and political functions are no less relevant today, as blogs are increasingly used as a way of interpersonal interaction, as well as the information provided by them, acquires a political character when it affects the spheres of power and management relations, directly or indirectly related to power issues (Bronnikov, 2017). With the help of the blogosphere, it is easy to understand and always be aware of the mood of the population, since the blog is much faster than other sources than politicians use. However, it’s impossible not to agree that the representatives of the same blog is unlikely to have a consensus, as it is a system of informal representation.
To continue the issue of the blog function, it is extremely important to mention about one more function of this type of Internet resource-autocommunication. In this case, through the blog, a person tries to realize himself and at the same time the reaction from readers is not required to him. It is more important for the author to get the skill to appreciate his opinion more and correctly formulate his own point of view, based on a large number of links, as well as links of interest, the opportunity to find a lot of useful information without leaving the "blogosphere".
Blogs, like one of the new ways to present and spread information and is being less professional and even sometimes amateur sources of information, plays a great role in shaping the worldview of students and their perception of the world around them. Besides, blogs are often described as important tools for understanding the world and ourselves in it. The problem is that weak methodological basis of the understanding of the relationship between new media and the young generation sometimes causes a serious problem for most people. Blog is considered as a dangerous tool with the help of which the consciousness of our youth is filled with only rubbish and nonsense. Moreover, blog can impact the information space of our young people so much that it can change completely their worldview. The truth is that blogs really take an important place in the perception of the world by young generation. But there are not only negative, there are lots of positive characteristics of blogs that must be taken into consideration and developed. We suggest paying attention to the educational blogs, which can be very effective.
Is blog really the most widespread among media?
We think that the results, we have received after analysing the findings of our survey, exactly shows that blogs occupy an increasing space among media, and the growth of number of them will certainly continue in the future. It is explained by different facts, where the most important is the relevancy of information presented by this way of spreading information.
What functions of the blog is the most important?
There are many functions of the blogs, but facts show that the most important is auto-communication. Studying in the university is a special period for the young people. It’s time when they want to achieve self-realisation sharing their ideas. Sometimes it’s difficult to express yourself publicly and a blog like a simulator is a good way to try.
3.3. How strong the impact of information from blogs on the information space of young people?
In spite of the negative attitude of the most of people to the blogs, we think that to consider this internet resource as a dangerous tool of ill impact on the information space of young people, we should definitely divide such concepts as information and knowledge and realise how the young people consider the blogs: as a way to get information or as a way to improve your knowledge. Due to the results of our survey, not more than one third of respondents can regard blogs as a set of rules that were the results of some knowledge. It proves that young generation is more sensible than we think and have more adequate attitude to the blogs.
Purpose of the Study
The purpose of our study is to dispel traditional ideas about the negative impact of new media, in particular the blog on the information space of young people. We want to show a positive effect of using the blogs by young generation. The hypothesis is that our young people use the information from the blogs and blogs themselves in a correct way that can influence their worldview positively.
We used empirical methods (the study and analysis of various sources, in this case, blogs and statistical data) and sociological research. The study was conducted with the help of Moodle CSU, an integration platform of virtual learning. In particular, content analysis was used, which was used to study the information provided by blogs and its accuracy. The criteria for the selection of blogs for our work has become the popularity of blogs in social networks. Such tools as the number of reposts and references provide the highest level of accuracy of the blogger's interaction with his audience. In addition, a sociological observation and survey was conducted, where respondents were representatives of the younger generation. This type of work helped us determine the frequency with which young people turn to blogs and their attitude to the information in these sources.
Functions of blogs among the students
How big is the share of the blog in the formation of the information space of the younger generation? Can you trust the information provided on the blog pages? Let's try to answer these questions. Blogs can provide insider information to readers. This means that many blogs are usually written by experts working in certain areas. They provide their readers with first-hand knowledge that can help guide the decision-making process. Blogs are usually written without restrictions. Industry authors tend to have more freedom when choosing the types of blogs they write. Usually they do not have a chain of checks and cross-checks before publication, as it would be in online publications. Due to the nature of blogs, even the most controversial topics are given an opportunity for discussion. In addition, blogs are usually written informally, which allows readers to easily relate to the language and the message. This is ideal for authors who want to provide informative web content that their target audience can connect with and act upon.
One of the priorities of our study was to highlight the leading functions of the blog in the information space of young people.
The diagram shows (Figure
Blogs represent a growing mass of user-generated content, which is changing as this or that information becomes available to people. Young people make friends on the Internet, communicate, exchange information, gain new knowledge, create professional and interest communities. Blogs serve as a friendly mediator in a discussion between the author and readers, since most blogging programs provide simple means for posting comments. And it seems that in the blogosphere the psychological barrier to comments is much lower, as there is an expectation of interactivity in the blog community. This interaction between bloggers and their readers, who comment on the news, is viewed as one of the earliest forms of social networking.
As it can be seen from the diagram presented in our research (Figure
The influence of blogs on the youth
While studying the blogs visited by our respondents, we noticed that young people often visit educational blogs created by teachers of educational institutions. Using such blogs can be very effective. This allows the reader, most often students, not only to understand the material they are learning, but also to offer their own understanding of this content, as well as leave comments on blogs, without fear of instant opinions and reactions from the teacher and fellow students. All of this contributes to feedback and potential support for new ideas.
In addition, blogs can discipline a student, for example, if a student publishes his written assignment, his attitude towards its implementation changes. By posting their comments on the blog, students carefully select words and arguments, study the design of the answer more carefully, which leads to better work. This is due to the fact that this type of work involves an external assessment from other readers.
The undoubted advantage is the use of hyperlinks to other resources, which helps students, as Bozadzhiev (2018) thinks, that to understand the relationship and context of knowledge, their design and development. A blog becomes a virtual space for testing new concepts. Blog hyperlinks provide readers with a broader context for a particular message on the Internet, attracting news, images and other information. In addition, blog information is updated frequently.
The impact of the blog on the information space of the youth is obvious (Figure
With the help of the blog, the student overcomes the psychological barrier in communicating with the outside world. Many teachers do not want to perform such a task, and this is not always due to the low level of work; sometimes the reason lies in the lack of self-confidence and low self-esteem. Proper organization and structure of the blog can help the student with this problem.
It is necessary to adhere to a more accurate picture of the role of the blog in shaping the system of views of young people on the reality and social changes of young people. The predominant use of blogs is explained by the provision of space for intellectual discussion. Young people have the opportunity to discuss socio-political and economic issues among their friends; the opportunity to express everything that he considers relevant and important, openly and without censorship. A young person can change their attitudes and behavioral attitudes under the influence of reputable bloggers. However, he has a clear understanding of the nature of such sources and does not rely on him as the main.
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07 August 2019
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Communication studies, press, journalism, science, technology, society
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Bykova*, T., & Lubozheva, L. (2019). Blog: New Information For New Generation. In Z. Marina Viktorovna (Ed.), Journalistic Text in a New Technological Environment: Achievements and Problems, vol 66. European Proceedings of Social and Behavioural Sciences (pp. 189-198). Future Academy. https://doi.org/10.15405/epsbs.2019.08.02.23