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Common visual design elements


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  • 1. Common Visual Design Elements of Weblogs Lois Scheidt and Elijah Wright
  • 2. Background
  • 3. Methodology
    • Random sample of 154 weblogs collected September 21, 2003
    • Collected from blog-tracking website http:// /
    • Grounded theory approach was used to develop a coding scheme consisting of 23 elements
    • Coding categories are not exclusive
  • 4. Sex of authors
    • Single author weblogs predominate in this corpus with 147
    • Seven have two or more authors
    • 48.3% of the single author weblogs have male authors
    • 49.7% have female webloggers
    • Of the 7 multiple author weblogs; 2 have all male authors, 1 has all female authors, and 4 have both male and female authors
  • 5. 0 video 0 music 0.60% custom cursors 0.60% custom calendar layout 1.90% scrolling headers 2.60% too wide 2.60% language 3.20% text effects 3.90% photo background 3.90% per-post icons 4.50% smilies 6.40% color clash 7.80% graphical dividers 7.80% graphical dividers 12.30% custom font 17.50% color bars 18.20% data representations 22.10% custom banner 24.70% custom table borders 33.80% color alteration 40.30% custom colors 41.60% color in headings/titles 43.50% custom images 51.90% CMC elements Incidence across all Weblogs Code
  • 6. Custom images
    • Custom images were found in 43.5% of the weblogs analyzed
      • Female webloggers posted 46.3% of the custom images
      • Males utilized 47.8% of the images
      • Images were posted on 4.5% of the weblogs being operated by multiple webloggers
      • Unknown gender webloggers utilized 1.5% of the custom images in their weblog design
  • 7. Colors in titles and headings
    • Colors in titles and headings, any color other then black or white, are present in 41.6%
      • Female webloggers utilized 40.6% of colored text headings
      • Male webloggers used colors other than black and white in 51.6% of the weblogs
      • Unknown gender webloggers and weblogs with multiple webloggers account for 7.8% of those using color in their text headings, 3.1% and 4.7% respectively.
  • 8. Custom color text
    • Custom color text was present in 40.3%
      • Female webloggers used significantly more color with 58.1% of the weblogs displaying this customization
      • Male webloggers used only 38.7% of the custom color
      • Multiple weblogger weblogs used 3.2% of the custom color text
  • 9. Custom table borders
    • Thirty-eight (24.7%) of the weblogs had custom table borders
      • Female webloggers displayed 57.9% of the custom table borders
      • While 39.5% were by male webloggers
      • Multiple weblogger weblogs used 2.6% of the custom table borders
  • 10. Color alteration
    • Color alterations, changing the base color of a common weblog template, are present in 33.8% of the weblogs
      • 57.7% of the color alteration was used by female webloggers
      • 40.4% was used by male webloggers
      • 1.9% was used by webloggers of unknown gender
  • 11. Custom banners
    • Custom banners were present in 22.1%
      • Female webloggers presented custom banners in 41.2% of the weblogs in the sample
      • Male webloggers displayed the characteristic in 47.1% of the weblogs
      • Unknown gender and multiple weblogger categories accounted for four custom banner weblogs (5.9% each)
  • 12. Conclusion
    • Individual webloggers do not tend to make substantive structural changes to the default layout of their sites
    • Design schemes are frequently minimally modified versions of templates provided by software selected by the end user
    • An overwhelming proportion of the customizations we observed came in the sidebar