Monday, March 7, 2011

Credibility Assignment

I chose to do my assignment on the music website Gorilla VS. Bear. I chose this site because I visit it daily to read news about artists that I enjoy listening to, as well as to find new music. I also chose it because it is based out of Texas.

The page is complete and not under construction. The title of the page is Gorilla VS. Bear. It was created in 2005 by Chris Cantalini, and it was last updated on Sunday, March 8, 2011. The audience is music enthusiasts and people who wish to find new music and mp3s. The site says that it is not genre specific, however, I do feel that sometimes the site tends to focus on lo-fi indie music. There are other sources of information available on the site. There are a few external links to other music sites, as well as links to internal sources. All of the links function properly. According to the site, outside sources support the information as well. In 2008, Rolling Stone named Gorilla VS. Bear on of the best music blogs online, and Newsweek said that the site was "influential."

Chris Cantalini created the site in 2005. Although the actual website doesn't give much information about him, a Google search revealed that he attended The University of Texas at Dallas, where he received a degree in psychology, and he also attended The University of San Diego. He founded the record label Forest Family Records in 2010. The means to contact the author is by e-mail and Twitter. There is also a link to his record label website. His association to the site is unclear, only that he is the founder, and that David Bartholow is a "creative director." It looks like T-Mobile and the Spring Love Music Fest is sponsoring the site, however, I usually see different sponsors every few days. The domain name is a .net domain, but since it is a blog, it appears to be a personal website. I wasn't able to backtrack in the url to get more information about the author. It appears that the site is accurate in the information that it distributes. As I said before, there are references to outside sources of information. There is not a non-web version of the site.

This site is one of my favorite sites because it looks very professional looking and unique. It is free of grammar, spelling and punctuation problems, and the writing style is appropriate for the topic of music. The format of the site is very easy to use, in part because of the appropriate headings and useful navigation. The images and sound work very well on this site. The site actually helped popularize Polaroid photographs to the younger generations recently, so the images are probably not edited with Photoshop, however, I think that editing them in Photoshop would take away from what the author intended to showcase -- the vintage look of Polaroid photos. The mp3s work and are supported by the Yahoo! Media Player, a media player that adds sound to the site with just one line of HTML, is easy to use and isn't bulky and space consuming. I heard of the site by word-of-mouth, but I found the site itself by searching for it in Google. It is also easy to tell that news, editorial and advertisements have separate presentations on the site. The ads are usually to the site and the news and editorial content are all in the main body section of the site. When looking at the source code, I was blown away. This site uses a lot of meta tags, and many, many divs. I could definitely tell that the designer of this site to the time to carefully build an aesthetically pleasing and functional site.

In summary, I believe that this site is credible for posting music news and new artists. Rolling Stone, Newsweek and even the New York Times have written about this website, even praised it. Most people that I meet who are into music usually are avid readers of this website as well. With links to outside sources, most of which can be considered competitors, I believe this site gives us information, tells us where they got it from, and lets us decide whether we like the music or not.

No comments: