The Importance of Being Interesting

“The Importance of Being Interesting” – has a certain intrigue, yes?

On 29 October, 2009 Adam Tinworth, Head of Blogging for RBI, told us that people want to read a blog or look at a website that is interesting. Pretty standard stuff to be honest. Without thinking you do tend to read / watch / listen to something that is interesting or something that is of interest to you. Anyway, Adam suggests a hierarchy of interesting:

  • a link
  • a photo
  • a video
  • discussion
  • opinion

And, above all else, why is this blog worth your precious time?

This has got me thinking: what do I find interesting online? Apart from the usual suspect, Facebook, there are a couple of other websites which I, fairly regularly, check. Using the hierarchy of interesting as a checklist, I’m going to see how my favourite websites rank.

My twitterFirst up, Twitter. Leading on from what Dr Claire Wardle from the BBC College of Journalism told us on 22 October, 2009, Twitter really is what you make of it.

I point blank refused to join Twitter, as my boyfriend kindly reminded me, but after being told to join it for my course I really am getting a lot out of it.

I am primarily using it to follow course mates and many people / businesses in the media.

Looking at the hierarchy, Twitter ticks the link, opinion and discussion boxes. People, myself included, use their 140 characters to link to websites, photographs and other things of interest. Links promote discussion, people want to expresses their opinion, which leads quite nicely to my next point. People also use their 140 characters to publish their own opinions. Just take all the Tweets which happened the night Nick Griffin appeared on Question Time.

BBC NewsMy next website up for discussion is BBC News. I must admit, I only started checking this everyday when I started at university. I no longer had my parents to tell me what was happening with the world, so I turned to the BBC News website.

In my opinion, this really is the website that has it all. It just looks good. The site is really easy to navigate and there are photos, videos and blogs galore. I could literally spend a good hour or two reading through the site and clicking link after link.

I can safely say that the website does tick every box in my virtual checklist of interesting. A lot of the well-known BBC faces write their own blogs, and Rory Cellan-Jones is a regular blogger.

My last website is my guilty pleasure. I put my hand up, I have read Heat before. However I gave up reading it because I honestly don’t care what is happening in the world of Strictly, X Factor or, heaven forbid there is another series, Big Brother. I don’t own a TV and like to remain blissfully unaware of what is happening.

The kind of celebrity I do enjoy reading about are actors and actresses. Throw in the occasional film director too. I love films and I enjoy finding out the latest news about upcoming films. I am a regular IMDb user, which is nothing to be ashamed of.

Just JaredIt is this website which is my guilty pleasure, Just Jared. The website is primarily based around pictures with a few lines explaining them. While I don’t know all the celebrities who are mentioned, I like looking at the website because it also gives me the latest film news. I have seen many film trailers on this website first.

For my virtual checklist of interesting, Just Jared ticks links, photos, videos and discussion. People can comment on the images and that is where the discussion arises.

There is some opinion, though to be honest I’m not sure what this website actually is. I suppose it is sort of a blog, but also sort of a news website too. Whatever it is, I think it does its job very well. Many times I have looked at something on the site, told somebody else, and then looked it up again myself. This website definitely promotes discussion.

There are literally thousands of websites, and looking at my odd little selection, what is shows is that “interesting” is definitely your own personal choice. However, Adam’s hierarchy is pretty consistent. People like things which they can see, as well as read. People like being able to discuss about things. People like to investigate and click on associated links. People like interesting!

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2 thoughts on “The Importance of Being Interesting”

  1. “I’m not sure what this website actually is. I suppose it is sort of a blog, but also sort of a news website too. Whatever it is, I think it does its job very well.” – Very well put Claire. The walls between types of journalism are tumbling down but provided that whatever emerges does its job well, does it matter?

  2. I agree with you there.

    A website/blog like JustJared isn’t providing a service per se, but what it is doing is providing a resource where people like me can go to get their daily fill on news that interests them.

    While articles published professionally are for a distinct purpose, I think blogs are the “poster girl” for writing just for the sake of it. Writing for pleasure most of all.

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