24 thoughts on “Netography 12 – End of project break up letter”

  1. Always impressed with the quality of your posts, honestly am. If you happen not to get the greatest marks, please never tell me, because this would be very demotivating for me! I think you not only put in a lot of effort, but you are also very analytical and creative, which is pretty awesome in my book.

    One suggestion I would have, though, as regards this post here and your street app video you mentioned in the open letter (to Jeremy?): Maybe try reducing the lengths of your posts. I am a fan, yet even I am reluctant to be reading what seems like some hundred pages 😉 Maybe try making it easier, more accessible, more digestable for your readers, viewers, consumers?

    1. I think we approach blogging with different goals in mind. You’re thinking like a TV director with a potentially wide audience he wants to communicate with. For me, I see it more as student task and a method for developing my writing, recording my thoughts, experimenting with things. The audience is kind of secondary.

      This blog is going to marked for assessment, there is no word count and “bad” posts don’t lose you marks (or at least that is how I understood it on IDEL). Therefore, I have little inclination to make my posts short and digestible. We also get marks for regularity so you may as well write some more. It’s the markers who have to wade through it at the end so it’s sort of their problem.

      The downside of this approach is that it doesn’t solicit much in the way of comments. People just have to jump in and keep up but I guess I can live with that if I get a reasonable mark. My final assessment will probably be more focused, just so I don’t get out of practice in producing more concise work. Happy to show you my IDEL essay if you want to see what I do when I have a word count limit.

  2. Hi Daniel (and Helen!)

    Thanks for posting this. I hadn’t heard of break up or love letters for design research and I’m grateful to you both for having given me the heads-up and for providing a living example! I am guessing that they elicit more information than other methodologies because of their focus on the emotional and also because we are familiar with the literacies of the genre (!). They probably also work because instead of completing an impersonal questionnaire, the letter writer is made to feel central and important. I feel averse to them when they are used cynically for brand/consumer research – they remind me of that phrase ‘your opinion is important to us’, but they would be great for all sorts of inquiry. I love the creative way you’ve used it for your mooc break up and admire your expressive delivery – I would have been too self-conscious!


  3. Super work here Daniel, maintaining your creative approach to the lifestream task!

    It’s interesting that your response here seems to be advocating a kind of return to basics (of drumming), a focus on rudimentary skills that are best studied alone, that can only come from quiet, individual practice with one’s self, on one’s own. Perhaps that is something particular to drumming (or indeed any musical form), however it also says something about the nature of learning perhaps: that community isn’t everything, all of the time? There is so much of the ‘social’ (and ‘relationships’ therein) in our discussions of learning that I wonder if there is a danger in overlooking the value of being ‘single’? Just as being ‘single’ might be viewed as inferior, or even with suspicion, in some cultures, are we too quick to undermine ‘individualism’ in our contemporary ‘socially constructed’ education?

    Or perhaps this is really about the size and ‘appropriateness’ of community?

    ‘I need to get my masters degree done’

    Yup 🙂

    Interesting links to the break up letter as ‘method’ here, thanks for sharing!

  4. It seems like you’re caught up in a monogamistic way of thinking – you can’t have drumming and the MSc? Surely you can all come to some arrangement? 🙂
    Love the playing with genre.
    Thinking about this in relation to Jeremy’s comment about social learning… I’ve been quite struck by Bruce Macfarlane’s 2014 paper on performativity and mulling it over a lot lately. He makes the point that private learning is being converted in to public performance and that ‘Performative environments encourage inauthentic behavior as individuals endeavour to conform’ (Macafarlane, 2015: 347). He says that there’s so much push around attendance, surveillance, and participation that it creates a sort of ‘presenteesim’ and ‘learnerism’ that means it’s all about demonstrating learning has been achieved rather than getting on with the quiet, often individual, act of actually learning. I wonder if there’s some ongoing tension between the social learning elements that come from imitation, vicarious learning, community of practices etc and that need for some internal space, that sanctuary and solitude to simply digest. (The return to basics that for me would be technical work – scales, tone work etc – that produce the essential grounding to then enable playing with others.)

    Macfarlane, B. (2015). Student performativity in higher education: converting learning as a private space into a public performance. Higher Education Research & Development, 34(2), 338-350. http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/07294360.2014.956697

    1. More of a performative/identity projection kind of comment. I am publicly declaring that I am a properly dedicated MSc student even though IRL I am spending a hell of a lot of time drumming.

      In a way it also portrays my drumming in a sort of positive light. That I would be a super committed musician if not for other things. In reality even without the MSc I’d struggle with dedicating myself to practice.

  5. Bloody hell I wrote that performative comment after only seeing a wee bit of your comment on my blog dashboard. Didn’t know you were going to link me a paper on performativity.

    I am tempted to say great minds think alike but can’t as I am English and as such am compelled to perform the proper gestures of faux-humbleness.

    “Learnerism emphasises the need for the student to be publicly ‘seen’ to be learning and constructing a personal understanding instead of acquiring knowledge as a private activity.”

    and all of our learning is supposed to be on this EDC blog. Something I’ve struggled with as I’ve definitely been doing extra reading but not bothering to show it on the blog. Or have I? We’ll never know, best give me more marks to be on the safe side.

    “Time – ‘stacking’ involving simultaneous actions and processes” – I am encouraged to do this with my technical sticking practice in drumming by counting out loud and tapping my heel on the quarter note pulse. This means I am learning a rudiment, strengthening my time feel, building co-ordination and even working in odd time signatures with some rudiments.

    That whole paragraph on time management really resonated with me.

    Will read more later.

  6. OK one last comment.

    Just to say I am not advocating a return to basics and solo study as a general principal. I think it’s the best thing to do with my drumming at this particular moment. I’ve always focussed on being in bands, jamming and group composition – I very much enjoy the social participative element above all else. However, in order to participate better, in the moment, I need to go back and deeply learn the fundamental mechanics. This is right for me now. But this may change over time and it might not be what works for others. There’s a balance to be struck between communal and solitary study certainly.

  7. Thinking a bit more it’s the difference between music and drumming.

    I want to make music with people. To do that I need to practice drumming on my own.

    So doing stuff like this on my own is really valuable: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tBmiSlqXPOc but you wouldn’t want to do this with other people as it’s not musical.

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