March, 2014

Republic of Geek.

Since making a Spotify account for this class, I have been more open to viewing different types of websites. Whenever I needed information regarding movies, television, or other things media related my first thought was to use sites that are well known publications like Entertainment Weekly or The Hollywood Reporter. However, I soon realized that the news that they were putting on their website was very mainstream to say the least. It was nothing that I couldn’t get from another website. I wanted more variety particularly because what I was writing about wasn’t exactly your average topic. So while searching the internet for different viewpoints on the stories I was interested in writing I came across a website called Republic of Geek.

Republic of Geek:

Republic of Geek started in January of 2009 which makes it a relatively new site if put into perspective of how long the internet has been around. The site contains original content that discusses more than just film. It branches out into television, gaming systems (table and video), comics, anime, and it also has its own coverage of media conventions such as 2013 New York Comic-Con.

Layout:

I am not wildly fond of the layout this website has chosen. The layout is this block style in which the stories are stacked one on top of the other. It just seems too cluttered for one webpage. Personally, I find lists have a more professional look. Its simplistic and makes what your looking for a lot easier to find. Although I would like to see more graphics and visual affects if a website was to chose a list-type format for there content. Lists could be rather boring to scroll through.

However, what I do like about the layout is its use of the sidebar. On the right side of the screen, an interactive list appears that makes viewers able to scroll through the websites archives, dating all the way back to their first postings in January of 2009. I like websites that have archive categories because it gives the viewer much more freedom when looking up topics they like. For example, if I wanted to see if Republic of Geek posted anything in relation to films like The Avengers or The Dark Knight Rises which came out in the summer of 2012, I need only scroll through the archive categories and look for May 2012 and July 2012. Interestingly enough, they did have post about both films, which you can view here.  In comparison larger websites like Entertainment Weekly do not have this feature. Their homepage is dedicated to what’s new and what’s hot at the moment. There is nothing creative about it because all EW is writing about is, basically, what everyone else is writing about. Which lead me to . . .

Original Content:

Another thing I liked about this website was there use of original content. This is something I haven’t seen on any other major website which is why I chose this site more often than not when looking for story ideas. Republic of Geek publishes periodically a series of stories that have made headlines in the film and gaming world. These stories are then complied into one post called the Daily 8-Bit. This post contains 8 different stories that are accompanied with links to the sources of the material. You can see an example of one here dated from May 2012.

Followers and Feedback:

This was something I noticed that could possible hurt this website. Along with the archives category on the right of the screen is a box that links viewers to the Twitter account of Republic of Geeks. It is a separate page that viewers can scroll through seeing tweets that they have made themselves and tweets that they have been tagged in by followers. The problem here is that Republic of Geek only has 45 followers and 122 that are following. It does however have a Facebook page but the page isn’t uploaded as frequently as the website it. The last post for the page was in August of 2013. It also does not have an Instagram account.  I see this as a big problem for viewers. It makes the website sort of isolated from the world. It has little too offer viewers in generating feedback.

My suggestion:

I think it would be beneficial to have the website itself linked to the Facebook page that way whenever a story is uploaded, it will be upload in two places, generating more views. Also, set up an Instagram account. That is a perfect place to advertise your logo adn upload posters of new films that are being discussed on the website. You can link your Twitter account to your Instagram name by posting it in the bio section of your Instagram account. This could help in bringing in more Twitter followers too.

What exactly is a teaser?

SUMMERS COMING! Which means no school, warmer days, vacations, parties and movies! Oh, the movies.

Summer starts earlier and earlier each year when it comes to big budget releases for studies. Last year, summer “started” when Iron Man 3 was released on May 2nd. Technically that’s still spring. This year I’ve noticed that summer starts on May 30, with Disney set to release Maleficent, the live-action retelling of Sleeping Beauty starting Angelina Jolie.

So while on the topic of Maleficent, has anyone noticed that all the previews for the film or not really previews? They are short clips, ranging from about 30 to 90 seconds,  that give away absolutely nothing about the films plot?

These previews are a new concept in marketing called teasers, which basically means they are a preview OF the preview. And a great way to built up anticipation for the film itself.

The end of the teaser reads “In 1 day see the full trailer.”

This is quickly becoming a new trend in Hollywood for hotly anticipated movies. Previous blockbusters like the Twilight Saga have used this technique to build up fan reaction to the final installment in the multi-billion dollar series. Upcoming films like The Amazing Spider-Man 2 and Transformers: Age of Extinction have also used teasers.

Paramount released this 35 second teaser on Superbowl Sunday in preparation of the films official two and a half minute trailer which was released about a week later.

In addition to this new trend, the latest installments to popular franchise like Spider-Man and Marvel’s Avengers have been accompanied with mid and/or post-credit scenes in which short segments of the next installment are shown to generate interest and keep the storyline going. Marvel’s most recent installment Thor: The Dark World teased this summers Guardian’s of the Galaxy, set to be released on August 1.

With upcoming films like The Hunger Games: Mockingjay-Part 1, The Hobbit: There and Back Again and Avengers: Age of Ultron expect to see more teasers to be released throughout the summer.

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