DHCommons Journal Report

The DHCommons Journal is probably the most digital humanities oriented journal at which we have looked. The audience for the DHCommons is specifically digital humanities learners and participants that want to learn more about the meta explanations for the developing field. It is very interesting for everyone interested in learning about collaboration, peer reviews, authorship, and of course literature and humanities. If anyone wants to know how to develop the digital humanities, and the humanities in general, while realizing how to make specific goals, this journal is a good place to start.

As the issue introduction says on the website, many of the authors they have already worked with thought of everything in theoretical aspects, but the journal has attempted to make technical progress and an actual scholarly impact. The journal is multilingual and very diverse which is something that not all digital humanities sites remembers to include. History is also a major subject in the journal and they discuss the making of digital humanities tools such as timelines and editing in general. Even the historical personal statements of the journal are all more explanatory on how research is obtained for creating databases and interactive websites than they are narrative and based on what they actually discovered.

Because the journal is very new, there is not a lot of information and it is kind of difficult to search the site because of its consequential layout. Even the way the journal articles were titled was very confusing to me. After I presented information in class about my journal, I realized the journal article I found the most interesting was just the journal’s issue 1 introduction. The introduction was the only archived article and the other actual journal articles were called project statements and there were two “how did they make that?” articles. I thought the introduction was the what in the journal. Since the journal is already very meta based, I figured “how did they make that” was a meta anaylsis of the entire journal and that it seemed like the informational resource and abstract of the entire journal-the how of the journal. There is also an about section which explains why the journal was created. I thought this was the introduction. Looking at it more I see that the project statements are likely the actual articles, but it is very hard to see much difference in any of the different works in the different sections of the journal’s site. Typically a statement is more of just a bonus to the what, why, and how the journal is made. The site is very simple to use, but that is likely because it is so empty. There is no search bar, and this journal could become something great in time after more collaborations are made, but it is easily read over many times in just a day.

Though the meta-journal contains eclectic and comprehensive information on the development of the digital humanities, the site is pretty empty and is not aesthetically intriguing. As I said before, there is not even enough articles to incorporate a search bar. There are 10 articles in the whole site and they are all on the sidebar so there is little need to explore past the main page. All of the editors are listed as well, but most of the profiles are not complete. Though the main page is not aesthetically pleasing, the journal articles do include photos, graphs, and timelines. The article about World War I specifically has a good digital humanities interface. The interface and infrastructure of this site do not make a lot of sense to me because there is plenty of information on DHCommons’ home page for collaboration, projects, and the blog, but the link to the journal is quite empty. Though the multilingual aspect of the website is important and exciting, the main blog they use on the front page is in Spanish while the rest of the links are in English. There should be an option to translate every article on the main screen, but in my opinion, the actual main language they show should be more consistent based on who will be reading the page the most. However, I did like the way the different page sections were color coded and there is a search bar on the main page though it is not on the journal section’s page.

To submit one’s own writing to this journal, first of all a profile must be created. Writing must be in a Word document or plain text with usage of images and/or hyperlinks. Writing must also be a part of a bigger project; furthermore, the guidelines of digital humanities content rules must be followed before a submission is sent in. It must address problems with academia, literature, and history. A meta-anaylsis of one’s project is essential to his or her project, and grant proposals are not accepted. Writing cannot be creative and that is why the articles are very explanatory of how the digital humanities function. A digital humanities emphasis is crucial. A team must be developed in order to create a project and the project must be reviewed after it is sent in. It is important to pay rights to everyone involved in the project as well. Noting how readers and reviewers can access the project when it is not fully public is important as well.

Overall, the DHCommons Journal has a lot of potential, but it is still obviously in its very early stages. Hopefully, after I post more of my critiques on my blog, and start research in graduate school, I could learn even more about the digital humanities by collaborating with some of my fellow DH enthusiasts and scholars. Writing in this journal is a good way to help other writers get recognized due to not only the writing experience but also the expansion of this journal and the expansion of the digital humanities. The expansion of digital humanities work can make all communication, networking, exposure, and learning much easier.