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Alex Withrow

WRT310
Rough Draft (Semi Finals)

Commented [ZD1]: Use this APA resource to help you


format your paper like a standard APA paper. I want a title
(an interesting onethis one is general and boring [with all
due respect]), a Running head, the AUSB info, your name,
1-inch margins, etc.
http://www.ccc.commnet.edu/library/apa.pdf

Communicating In A Digital Age


In our world today, technology is advancing at a very rapid rate. More things are being published

Commented [ZD2]: Be careful of things. Things is


vague. What does things mean here?

digitally and social media outlets have become a heavily influential part of our everyday lives. Child
Hope International consciously tailors its public documents to different audiences although they still
tailor some forms for older audience members, they are moving more toward social media outlets,
which has a bigger impact when communicating.
Child Hope International is a Christian organization that is set up to do work in a missionary way.
They spend their time in Haiti helping children who are in need by bringing light into the darkness.

Commented [ZD3]: The connection between these ideas is


unclear. Whats the specific link between sentence 1 and
sentence 2? Whatever that is, considering putting it into the
start of sentence 2 (or the end of sentence 1).
Commented [ZD4]: What documents? What audiences?
How are they tailored? What kind of impact?
Get super-specific with your thesis statement here, Alex.
Readers typically enjoy having a path to follow if were
able to anticipate whats coming up, well be able to follow
along more easily.

Their goal is to go into Haiti and provide children who are in desperate need and give them a place to
go. They also provide them with shelter, education, and food. However, the most important thing for

Commented [ZD5]: Redundant. You established this in


the previous sentence.

them to do is to go to Haiti with the intentions of showing them the love of God and letting them know

Commented [ZD6]: Ditto.

he cares for them.

Commented [ZD7]: Alex, this is a good start to a


background/content on Child Hope Intl, but Im wondering:
how do they achieve this goal? What do they actually DO
when theyre there?
Other qs Im wondering: how long have they been around?
Are they successful? Why Haiti?
You can definitely beef this up and provide a fuller portrait
of CHI which will likely make the rest of your paper more
meaningful.

When I conducted my interview, I requested to speak with Heather Moore, who is the United States

Commented [ZD8]: Interview? What interview?

Operations Manager for Child Hope International. She does most of if not all of the stateside work

I think you might want to spend some time/space setting up


what it is that youre/were doing here.

for the organization. When I asked Heather about what her day looks like as far as writing goes, she

Commented [ZD9]: Excellent use of dashes.

replied, I would say the bulk [of it] is emails, which sounds silly, but I really do write a lot of emails. I

Commented [ZD10]: Is it worth where you met with her?


For how long? How you got the interview in the first
place?

coordinate volunteers to go to Haiti and send them lists of stuff to do. I also send out the agenda for
board meetings. Heather also says that she is involved in writing for their social media outlets such as
Facebook and Instagram.
In the course, we spent a lot of time using the words pathos, ethos, and logos. It may be a bit
confusing what these terms mean. According to Lunsford and Ruszkiewicz (2012) here are the

Commented [ZD11]: Flow/organization concern: Im


having trouble understanding how this sentence (in which
you introduce uncertainty) builds off/onto the previous/next
sentence.

definitions of those words:

Pathos Emotional appeals generate emotions (fear, pity, love, anger, jealousy) that the writer
hopes will lead the audience to accept the claim.

Ethos The trustworthiness (along with fairness and respect) is a mark of ethos, or credibility.

Logos Logical appeals (pp. 26-27)

During the interview, it was particularly interesting to quietly investigate using the terms pathos,
ethos, and logos. These terms were mentioned and explained a little in the interview, but I tried to just
let these come out within the answers throughout the interview.

Commented [ZD12]: This doesnt really jive with the


standard conventions of an academic research paper. Id
like you to put this into sentences and weave it into a
focused paragraph.
Commented [ZD13]: From my perspective, it seems like
youre needlessly jumping aroundyouve gone from the
interview to the course readings, back to the interview.
Id like you to consider how you want to structure this to
establish a logical, smooth flow.

A couple of the artifacts that were collected were letters to people who have provided donations by
sponsoring a child in Haiti. These are actually physically mailed out letters to the donors to provide
updates, express thankfulness, and inform the donor of how their funds will be used. Although these do
get mailed out to the donors, what is interesting about them is that Heather stated in the interview We
dont do that many mailings because A.) Its really expensive and B.) Its a lot of work. So why mail
them out? Looking at these two documents a little closer, you can begin to see the way with which

Commented [ZD14]: Alright, so this is getting at your


point of this organization could benefit from utilizing social
media, but its not clear that this is why youre bringing this
into your paper. (I can pinpoint this is why youre bringing it
up b/c Im trained in this shitbut to other
readers/teachers/whomever, it wouldnt be clear.)
Remember: everything you include in a research-based
argument must clearly and directly come back to your thesis
statement.

words are tailored toward comforting or reassuring the donor of what they are doing. Such terms or
phrases like thank you, your support goes directly to support so-and-so, and it is our goal to
maintain your relationship with your sponsor child all kind of reassure the donor that this is important

Commented [ZD15]: For this course/me, you can get


away with some informal language in this paper. However, I
want you to know that for future formal papers, you might
want to steer clear of casual/conversation-y language.

and that Child Hope International Cares. The other letter uses a little bit of a different style in its
message. What is talked about is the accomplishments that have been accomplished over the last year.

Commented [ZD16]: Is the letter actually talking to


you?

They speak of children graduating high school, children being adopted into the program, and also the
promotion of a staff member. These are just the start to the letter, which appears to be setting up the
reader for excitement or creating an anticipation for them. A very important aspects to these letters is

Commented [ZD17]: Alex, Im getting a little lost here.

that Child Hope International always finishes up by letting the donor know that they are accessible to

What, specifically, are you trying to achieve in this


paragraph? Whats the point that youre trying to make?

them whenever and they go on to provide contact information should they be interested in it.
A lot of what is seen through Child Hope Internationals website and the artifacts that were
gathered, is pathos. There are heart strings being pulled and emotional roller coasters all over the place.
All you have to do is go onto their website and take a gander. Youll immediately see many pictures of

Commented [ZD18]: Is this relevant to your argument?


Based on your current thesis statement, I wasnt necessarily
anticipating this

children who look indifferent, staring into the camera lens with a look of longing. You will, however, also

I want you to get much more deliberate in what youre


trying to do here.

see pictures of the children in a classroom setting enjoying each others company. Looking at a particular

(PS: your sentences/syntax is crisp, which is great, but


remember: theres a hell of a lot more to writing.)

artifact from Child Hope International, it is evident that there are ways to make people empathize with

Commented [ZD19]: Who is you here? Me? Using


pronouns can be tricky, and you might want to steer clear of
using too many yous/wes.

simple graphics. This artifact is a bold image with a soft multicolored background that is visually
appealing to the eye. Headlining the page is How Much Does It Take to Support a Child in Haiti? This

Commented [ZD20]: Why?

draws out curiosity from the reader. Right below this question are three large, boldly outlined circles
with that very information. The first circle shows $3 provides food for a child for one day. The second
circle shows $2 provides education for a child for one day. Lastly, the third circle shows that just 17
cents provides clean water for a child for one day. These very small numbers, combined with what they
are capable of accomplishing, really makes the ready evaluate where their money goes. It brings to mind
many different ways in which their money is spent and causes them to see that if they were to just give

Commented [ZD21]: Gotcha. Is it worthfrom the getgo, ie, the topic sentenceestablishing the way that CHIs
documents draw the reader in? How they try to elicit the
audiences participation/involvement?

a very small amount of money, they could make a huge impact. This is quite a convincing piece of
writing.
These are all good examples of how writing can be effective and what ways they can be used, but
how is this more effective when used in social media outlets and published online? Take a second to
evaluate how much time we spend on some technologically advanced machine. Almost everybody has a
smart phone now and it is near impossible to be without it. People use iPads or tablets at work, in the

Commented [ZD22]: Ah ha, now youre taking me back


to your central argument. This is good, but Im wondering:
would it enhance your paper to include this in every step of
the way? Theres a ~2 or 3-page gap between when you
first mentioned this until now

classroom, or just at home in a recreational manor. Even laptops and computer are becoming more and
more compact so that they can be taken anywhere at any time. This focus on go-go-go is a very big part
of our everyday lives now.
There is very little time in most peoples lives to stop and sit for a while and read some long drawn
out paper or article. Shorter things with more graphics and pictures are more effective. Most people
are on their phones and are not sitting down reading lots of stuff Heather had told me. This is an

Commented [ZD23]: Im not clear on the connection


between these two sentences.

interesting claim to be made, but it is a very truthful statement. Look at websites like Instagram and
Pinterest. People spend endless amounts of time looking through hordes of pictures with a very short
and concise statement to make you aware of what the image is. There is a strong desire to just see what
is happening and move on to the next image. This has made social media outlets a great advantage for
exploiting information and has changed the way information is relayed. It is very popular now to make a
post or status update on one of these social media outlets or even connect one to the other for
the sharing of a status that is short so people can keep up to date with all of their friends and all the
different things they are doing.
However, these social media outlets do have their flaws. The most important one to keep in mind is
generational gaps. People of the current generation have been born into a time when technology and
digital media are very popular and growing so rapidly. Everything that we now had either a Facebook

Commented [ZD24]: I feel like youre doing a bit too


much armchair philosophizing in your past two
paragraphs. Remember: this is a research-based argument,
not an off-the-top-of-your-head argument.

page, a Twitter account, or an Instagram. Sometimes more often than not they have all of these
things. On top of all of this they have their own website as well. With all of this endless information
available to us online, it seems like we should all be indulging in knowledge. However, we cannot do this
if we do not know how to properly use those resources. This is where the age gap comes into play.
Think of all the people from older generations and what belongings they have. Generally speaking,
they own a TV, maybe a DVD player (probably a VCR), and probably a radio. That usually about sums up
the technology of an older persons house. Granted, there are people who are older and do pretty well
with technology, but for the most part its just really hard to keep up. When speaking about Facebook or
Twitter, most people wouldnt say that their grandma is live tweeting the riots downtown or posting the
most interesting and up to date status updates on Facebook. Most of our grandparents and others from

Commented [ZD25]: Alex, this isnt really what were


trying to go for hereat least not to this extent.
Your argument needs to be based on (1) your interview
data, (2) the artifacts you collected, and (3) our course
readings.
This people do this and people dont do that these days
represents none of the 3, above, pieces of evidence.

their generation have newspaper subscriptions, have a lot of books, still write checks for everything, use
a phonebook, and often dont know much about using a cell phone. For them, traditional is everything
and paper is a big part of that. Someone who is in their 60s or 70s isnt going to be super up to date on
our e-newsletters or our Instagram Heather tells me. As new models of the same thing come out every
year, and software becomes more advanced, it is harder for those who are unaccustomed to these

Commented [ZD26]: OK, so maybe you want to think of


the different audience/demographics that CHI isnt
successfully targeting through their artifacts.

technologies to keep up or find the slightest desire to do so. Why is it, then, that mailing has become so

You could establish AGE as one important factor then this


piece of evidence would be purposefully used.

obsolete? One reason Heather provided is that its really expensive and its a lot [more] work. Not only
that, but there is a lot to do with pollution by paper waste, ink, and other harmful effects of paper
printing that can be found in other papers. Another reason this shift to digital media has become so
much more effective is speed. Sending a letter by email or through social media is instantaneous,
whereas sending paper can take quite some time depending where the recipient resides.
Another point of view to take is that social media is actually ruining communication. Take a look
around and see whose heads are down looking at some electronic device. Children are introduced to
iPads when they are very young and there are specific apps developed just for them. The companies

who make all of these products have in mind that children will be handling them and you can find all
kinds of child settings within the product as well as many physical features tailored toward withstanding
child use. From this point of view, social media seems to be anything but social. The more these devices
become portable, the more we use them. We always have our smart phones in our pockets with
notifications appearing on them every several minutes and were always having to check to make sure
were keeping up with the world. However, this is starting to come at the expense of others. While we
are on our phones or tablets being social, our friends are sitting nearby either socializing alongside
of us on their phone, or they are staring with great anticipation waiting for you to look up to
acknowledge their existence. Businesses are become more mobile and provide the opportunity for their
employees to work remotely. Higher education schools are starting to provide courses online for free or
at very little cost and creating apps so students can learn on the go. When there is spare time while
waiting for an appointment, a flight, or someone to pick you up, there is access to the internet and
countless games on your electronic devices. It is these very things that make social media and digital
media a very unsocial thing. A lot of the examples provided, however, have a lot to do with ones selfcontrol as well. It is not necessarily the access to such things that makes digital media and social media
outlets unsocial, but the idea that people have little self-control or willingness to give up these devices
for a short amount of time to spend with their friends and family.
Social media is still the best way for communicating. Not only does it provide an easier and much
faster way for information to be transmitted, but it allows for more people who wouldnt normally go
looking for such content to find it. Look at your Facebook feed and notice all of the different things that
your friends and family have liked that you wouldnt ever look up yourself. Or maybe, because they have
liked something in particular, they have informed you of a new issue that is of particular interest to
you. If youre looking for a place to pull on peoples heart strings and really work your pathos, then
social media outlets are the place to go. When it comes to Child Hope International, Heather tries to

take advantage of this. However, with that being said, she does try to do that in a way thats not too
over the top. To her, that doesnt feel very genuine. Social media is also beneficial in this sharing
aspect because Child Hope International is a Christian organization whose support group is, for the most
part, mostly made up of other Christians. That being said, social media helps to share their information
in a more universal way that reaches out beyond the Christian community and into the world where
people have heart and can empathize with the missionary work they do.
According to the way Child Hope International has their website set up and the message Heather
tries to portray in her writings, she says, I think it should be really visually heavy instead of blocks of
text. More and more, people have a short attention span so if you can grab their attention with an
image right away, thats really helpful. Posts on Facebook get 6,000 views, just from sharing and people
seeing them. People are geared toward a single photo with a little bit of text. With millions of people a
day on the go and just wanting to hop on social media to scroll up and down their news feeds, the
perfect opportunity to put the right picture up is presented. With a big beautiful picture up and a great
title underneath it, you can literally change the meaning of the statement a picture paints a thousand
words.
There is also a sense of credibility Child Hope International has by posting the images they do. They
do try and post only high quality photos. There are some things Heather says they are mindful of when
posting the pictures. [We] try to really draw emotions, but I have trouble with The Starving Child
photo. I want to accurately convey whats going on in Haiti and not embellish it. This statement
Heather has made really proves to me that Child Hope International provides honest information and
has nothing to hide. They want people around the world to have an honest view of the work they are
doing and what effects they are having on that community and the people within it.

Although it would be powerful to have more statistics for Haiti as a whole on Child Hope
Internationals website, they do a great job at providing documentation of real life experiences and
information through their actions which are captured in images and used on the site the same may view
as more fluffy. I think it might be better described by the words empathetic and inspiring.
Take a look at all of the sites you visit, keep in mind the audiences the business is trying to lure in,
pay attention to the message they are trying to convey, and notice the images and links to their social
media accounts. Our world is moving toward virtual reality and communicating information there can be
done in the blink of an eye. With large enticing images and short sweet sentences to get the message
across, the images will paint their way into the databases of a technologically advanced society and the
database of our advanced minds to be shared across the networks of life.