So, I believe that I am going to stick with the food blog angle for this project. Another class that I am currently taking made me think about the emergence of the sort of “foodie” lifestyle. People documenting their eats, creating blogs with recipes, pictures, and so forth. Before it seemed to be a bit of a subculture for serious enthusiasts and professionals within that world. But now, it seems as if people who aren’t necessarily chefs or critics have enriched and expanded this world. Food is always in. Nevertheless, the past few years have introduced a period in which food is cool.
My initial research focus would be to explore how and why this lifestyle has come to the forefront. Why does food seem to be cooler now then it was before? Was it always cool and the emergence of social media increase its exposure? Is television to blame also with the creation of so many new food shows. Chefs have now become major, major celebrities, as popular as some musicians and movie stars. How did this happen?
I would also like to focus on how people use social networks to advance their visibility within the food blogging sphere. I am not an avid follower of any food blogs. I do happen to look at articles on the Yahoo! Food website occasionally and just read the various articles that are posted. I don’t necessarily look for recipes, but I do find that I enjoy reading about how people turn simple ingredients into a meal. It is nice to see and read about people who truly enjoy cooking, professional or not.
Social media has really become the vehicle for promoting our interests, hobbies, etc. and I want to explore food blogging from this aspect. So I won’t just limit research to amateur cooks, but restaurants, food trucks, chefs, anybody who uses social media/internet to promote their platform. I will first start my research by finding food blogs online to get familiar with them and just explore my topic before I try to answer any questions. This project has also inspired me to maybe start my own food blog, so research will be a great way to figure out where to start and what it takes to do so. Some of these blogs and/or the people that run them probably have social media profiles, so following them would help me to see their methods firsthand. I would also try and conducts interviews with these people. I interned at a production company that produced many food/lifestyle reality shows on Food Network. A great idea would be to maybe interview them and get their perspective on why they choose to produce these shows and their perspective on food and lifestyle. I would also want to gather research for a scholarly perspective, so looking into some academic databases would be helpful as well.
As far as presenting what I find, I envision writing a paper that conveys all my findings, but also a visual presentation. Because of the nature of my project I don’t believe that just writing a paper would do my research justice. So lots of screenshots, photos, videos, anything that will illustrate visually what I am talking about.
Questions for Feedback?
Am I going about my data collection the right way? Should I approach this topic from another angle?
Are there any sites, people, etc. that you could suggest that would be good for my research?