A Virtual Unknown Blog | News OK

Beating a path through the digital wilderness

Archived Blog Posts

  • "Reports of my death are greatly exaggerated"

    Jim Willis | Updated: Tue, Jul 9, 2013

    A plot in one of the old Twilight Zone episodes featured a guy, let’s call him Adam, who was pictured walking through his normal daily routine with one notable exception: he was invisible to everyone else. Adam couldn’t understand why, and his stress level was rising accordingly.

  • 2010: No time to catch a breath

    Jim Willis | Published: Thu, Dec 31, 2009

    Question: When is the new media not the new media? Answer: When it is the new new media.

  • A Lords-a-leaping Legend

    Jim Willis | Published: Fri, Dec 24, 2010

    One of the interesting things about the site Snopes.com, those Web sleuths who uphold or debunk strange assertions, is that you discover some things you didn’t even know were open to question.

  • Linking to simpler times

    Jim Willis | Updated: Mon, Jul 8, 2013

    I had a home for several years in Ashland County, Ohio, home to one of the largest concentrations of Amish in the country.

  • The road not taken

    Jim Willis | Published: Thu, Dec 2, 2010

    Last year I faced one of those dreaded administrative tasks that occasionally confronts academic department chairs: Going to a remote Austrian castle to do a site check on one of our summer programs.

  • What's in a (digital) word?

    Jim Willis | Published: Mon, Nov 22, 2010

    The English language is a dynamic one with new words and phrases added to our lexicon every day.

  • Helping to save Private Ryan

    Jim Willis | Published: Fri, Nov 12, 2010

    This week featured Veteran’s Day, which is a day that too often is ignored except for those who have served — usually far away from home — and for those who have waited for them to return safely.

  • A Web of Violence

    Jim Willis | Published: Sun, Nov 7, 2010

    Like a lot of young university researchers, I once placed almost total confidence in numbers as the basis of knowledge.

  • A new kind of memory

    Jim Willis | Published: Sat, Oct 30, 2010

    Indelible memories of those innocent years of grade school, awkward years of junior high, the posturing years of high school, and the challenging years of college are found between the covers of your old yearbooks.

  • Fingerpainting 2.0

    Jim Willis | Updated: Mon, Jul 8, 2013

    My dad was an artist who used oils, and later pastels, to create some beautiful landscapes and designs.

  • Stealing made easy

    Jim Willis | Published: Wed, Oct 13, 2010

    When I was starting out in the newspaper business (remember that medium?

  • Loss of privacy turns tragic ... again

    Jim Willis | Published: Wed, Oct 6, 2010

    A further reminder that individual privacy is hard to maintain in the Web 2.0 era came two weeks ago when a Rutgers University freshman committed suicide after seeing his sexual activity broadcast over the Web.

A Virtual Unknown

Journalist, professor and author Jim Willis explores the new media landscape and its evolving place in our day-to-day lives.