In comparing three texts within the same genre, I chose ones that fall under sports websites. They are as follows and I will call them #1, #2, and #3:
The website “Lookout Landing” is a strictly a Seattle Mariners journalistic-type website containing statistical comparisons, objective articles, and fan-based opinions all in regards to the Mariners. There isn’t one particular author of this text as there are both fan-written articles which are more biased. there are also regular writers on the website who try to capture the broader thoughts of the state of the team and what they believe is the mood Mariners fans in general. hey do a great job of providing in depth data, recognizable Seattle references, and opinions that are in tune to the state of the team and its fans. The purpose for the text is to provide stories and arguments regarding the Seattle Mariners which are backed by solutions to problems with the team or potential moves that they should/could make to improve the team. The purpose can be seen to not only inform but engage the audience by offering different polls and immersive comments sections under each article where people are able to create a specific online identity within the community of the Lookout Landing website. Its audience is clearly Seattle Mariners fans which is a specific target audience compared to broader sports websites like ESPN. The context of information on the site is more current, in-tune information however there are articles which look back at various historical events within the Mariners organization. The design choices on this website are effective in making the purpose for the website clear. It is organized in a grid system with pictures (and text overplayed) which link you to various articles. The pictures included in the short grid system are normally the newest articles with the larger picture including the most recent or popular article. Below the grid is a list of articles which are organized by date so that one could easily catch up on Mariners baseball talk if they weren’t able to check the website for a few hours, days, or even weeks. The proximity of the pictures within the grid on the home page allows ones eye to gather information about the content of the article quickly and easily as the eye is able to make associations based of what the picture alone contains. These narrowly scoped sports websites are used to display, inform, and engage efficiently with real-time comments and various updates and posts throughout the day. It is effective for this sort of genre (baseball) and even more specifically Seattle baseball. What’s interesting is the transition from sour, hopelessly venting news about an ailing Mariners team to a hopeful, electric, and promising standard for a successful mariners team. For example, the two most recent stories as of 3:06 of Monday the 8th are titled:
“After M’s pass test, it’s the fans’ turn”
“Blastoff!: Mariners vs. Astros”
This strikes a contrast between early posts like, for example, in 2012:
“Oh, dear me”
The site, Lookout Landing, is actually a branch to a larger, conglomerate sports-related community called SB Nation which is the mothership of various “Lookout Landing”-esque blogging sites regarding a plethora of sports and sports team communities…
“SB Nation” is basically laid out the same as “Lookout Landing” and still invites engagement from readers and contributors alike despite the larger range of topics. What is different, however is the content which is not only featured, but written about. Because of the different types of sports, ranges of information and data, and a generally larger number of traffic on the site, there are trends to be seen in what content is on the surface of the site. There are different factors which pertain to the audience and, in retrospect, the perceived audience of the site. Some factors such as the time of the year and the corresponding sports schedules and seasons are the main factor for the change in content that is promoted and featured on the site. For example, baseball and the upcoming postseason push will dominate headlines at night as games are finishing up. But the beginning of the football season will obviously be mixed in, especially on weekends and game days. Other sports will work there ways in and out during their various notable seasons, games, tournaments, and awards. However, other factors may steal the spotlight based on their timing, severity, and shock appeal. For example, the recent Baltimore Ravens’ Ray Rice domestic violence news which is dominating space today:
Audience for SB Nation is a lot broader audience that opposes the more specific fan of the Seattle Mariners. The audience here is a large variety of men, women, ages, and athletic backgrounds who are interested in the larger sports picture.
“Baseball Reference” is a text whose sole purpose is to provide the access to and ability to customize searches for all things regarding the sport of baseball and its statistics on a purely historical scale. Its rudimentary design as far as color, typography and various alignment/space usage (Times New Roman) gives way to the actual in depth analysis that one is looking to perform on the website. It contains limited color yet, for one who will be using this website, is engaging–not for what it looks like but for what you can do. There isn’t any cultural appeal like a baseball/sports blogging site whereas one wants to read news and information as soon as possible and as accurately as possible. The contents on baseball reference are dry, set in stone, and accurate overshadowing any opinions/biases/etc. that can be found in a written story. This site appeals to those who are not only strictly baseball fans who may want to know the amount of Home runs their favorite player hit in 1995, but also to statisticians, general managers, and baseball reporters looking to value, compare, or quantify certain aspects of a player.