Circulation Project and Reflection – Rebecca Zhou

My circulation project was a tumblr account talking about sustainability in Pittsburgh. Because we live in a tech savvy world, I thought it would be best to create an online presence and see if anyone would respond to my topic via Tumblr. The website is a great form of microblogging that brings out different kinds of people around the world to congregate and discuss different issues, which is why I thought it would be a great place to do this assignment and see what different people have to say.

I first started by creating a blog called Sustain PGH (to match my Twitter), simple enough. Then I posted daily about a different aspect of sustainability or how Pittsburgh is helping on this front, more of an educational thing for the public (because educating the public on sustainability and convincing them it is important is key priority before trying to enact change). Then at the end of the post, I would ask a fairly open ended question that another person could respond to. The way Tumblr works is that someone can reblog another person’s post and add more onto it, which is what I would expect to happen should someone in the Tumblr community want to piggyback on, refute, or add their two cents.

My first tumblr post looked like this:

Screen Shot 2015-03-30 at 11.39.24 AM

I thought it was clearly simple and defined what I was trying to do on the website; all the posts have a similar aesthetic with similar hashtags.

Sadly, over the week, no one responded to these posts. Perhaps it is because this is a very niche topic, and not many tumblr users are online to talk about sustainability, or Pittsburgh, or both. I thought that using an online platform would reach more people, but I think because that Tumblr is very much a hip, newer type of online media, it is used by many people in the younger generation, and because of that no one wants to talk about a subject that they can think about in the future.

The funny thing is, this is actually a problem faced by sustainability in general. No one wants to talk about it or think about it because it is going to face the future generation; many people often think about what is going to happen to them within the next month, let alone the next 50 years. That is why the topic of sustainability often gets overlooked by the news media as well, because there just has not been enough prominence on the issue to get enough hype of news worthy.

It would have been great if someone looked at my posts, but sadly it did not happen. But what I would envision would happen, should someone have agreed or disagreed with something I posted, would be me reblogging them and then saying my thoughts, creating a wonderful dialogue over the internet. I do not think I would change anything about my project because I still believe that the internet is a great thing and we are becoming more digital, and I am still hopeful that someone out there does have thoughts regarding this topic, it is just that my posts have yet to reach them.


4 thoughts on “Circulation Project and Reflection – Rebecca Zhou

  1. zic89 March 31, 2015 / 1:26 pm

    I think this was a great idea. I would have never thought to take my circulation project to the web, I think it was great that you did. I liked that you kept the posts simple and to the point and also ending the post with a question was a cool idea, leaving something for people to ponder as they finished reading each post.


  2. ebp6 March 31, 2015 / 6:11 pm

    I’m really surprised no one responded. I use Tumblr and I know how it can bring people together from all over the world, like you said. But I also agree with what you said about no one wanting to talk about sustainability. I feel like no one wants to talk about it unless they’re offering a solution to it. Overall, I really like the idea as a way of spreading a message around.


  3. hollinnies April 3, 2015 / 11:31 am

    This is so cool! As the above commenter stated, I’m actually really shocked you didn’t receive a larger response. Tumblr seems to be full of little niche sections of interest, although the response may have been stemmed by follower count, which was my issue when I started my hashtag. Maybe we would both reach a larger audience if we directed our approaches towards larger social media names, in an effort to have them spread the word for us. The web is a very complicated place to circulate information, but it usually very worth it once it reaches the right ears. Again, really cool plan, Tumblr is a great place to start out!


  4. JIAYINTANG April 3, 2015 / 12:34 pm

    that’s so weird that no one commented or seen it. Maybe if you post that blog on your main tumblr or on facebook it would get more traffic?


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