By Sasha Zuflacht
There’s something new out there for blogging fanatics and even blogging skeptics. How is that possible? It’s not the standard blog format. Cowbird.com is a more interactive, simplistic way of sharing your story. Although still a new development, this website has great potential. Instead of the narrow option of writing long, detailed narratives, an audio component enables users to express their message. An enticing, engaging photograph is displayed with this audio to compliment the story. In addition to a photograph, some people choose to write a few sentences to make their message even clearer.
Blogging has taken on various shapes and sizes since its first development. Most people share their blogs with close friends, family and colleagues. This is a great way to stay in contact and updated with people you care about. A standard blog, however, does not necessarily engage others outside your community. Cowbird allows you to follow everyone connected with the website, and find stories from around the world. I was first introduced to Cowbird by my uncle, an avid blogger who found this new layout enticing. He has encouraged me to use Cowbird when I travel to Cambodia in the spring.
For college students in particular, Cowbird is a simple way to stay engaged with life outside of their own bubble. Too often do we forget that excelling in academics is only one aspect of an education. In clicking one of the pictures on the home page, we are automatically connected to another world. We are transported to a street in India, the dirt road of Thailand, the vibrancy of Los Angeles and the Occupy Cleveland protests. We can hear wisdom from those older than us and see the innocence of those who are younger. Through Cowbird, users are open to new experiences. Users are able to listen to others briefly discuss their journeys, whether they be in their own backyard or in a land foreign to our own. It’s something different and refreshing; it’s the updated version of a diary.
On their website, Cowbird describes their mission as, “a small community of storytellers, focused on a deeper, longer-lasting, more personal kind of storytelling than you’re likely to find anywhere else on the Web.” With its unique and unusual title, Cowbird represents something new. Combining cow and bird, two animals with entirely different perspectives on life, foreshadows the diversity of each individual story that this website features. It is impossible to fully express the liveliness of this website. You have to see for yourself. Cowbird engages users with the stories of our world. It is one of the easier ways to learn of something new and fascinating. Take a five-minute study break and check it out. Before sitting on Facebook for hours, explore Cowbird. Instead of tweeting, what about Cowbird-ing? Cowbird could be the next big thing, so you better join in before it’s old news. Do yourself a forever and engage in something unknown.