I am, for the purposes of this assignment, considering the domain and blog setup assignments as one. At least in my case, one led seamlessly into the other. They were one activity that I completed in one sitting. They did not make sense alone.
It is easy to be a digital consumer—to have an account on Facebook or Twitter, to watch YouTube videos, to shop on Amazon, and so on. But to be a digital citizen requires some agency. Setting up our own domain and blog gave us that agency. Before doing this, I did not have my own presence on the internet. I had a presence as provided by other websites. I am still dependent on Reclaim Hosting and WordPress, but now I have my own space where I can present myself and interact with others however I want.
I found two challenges in this pair of assignments. The first was deciding on a domain name. So much of an identity can be determined by a name, especially in an arbitrary and anonymous environment like the internet. I decided to simply use my name. The next was setting up the website and knowing when to stop. It is easy to get sidetracked from other assignments and get sucked into rabbit holes of web design by trying to fix one feature or another. I have spent a lot of time poking around WordPress, trying to improve features of my site.
My advice to future students doing these assignments: Choose a name that succinctly communicates what your site is or who you are. Once you have it created, you can keep tweaking it forever. Don’t get stuck on the formatting. Design can evolve.