Case Study 3 – Kevin Barbieux

The blog I chose to study was Kevin Barbieux’s blog titled The Homeless Guy. Kevin Barbieux has been diagnosed with chronic homelessness, major depression, anxiety, and other illnesses. He has been homeless for half of his adult life. He writes his blog in hopes of educating people about the reality of homelessness.

The blog is nothing really special to look at, focusing more on word content rather than imagery. The header states The Homeless Guy in black, bold font which is what Kevin refers to himself as. Beneath; the subheader states There Is More to Homeless People Than Being Homeless. The title is in bold, larger font compared to the body. There is a link header at the top of the article that states Dictionary of Homeless Terms. It takes you to another blog post by Kevin where he defines terms used by the homeless.

Kevin has links to his Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram in the upper right hand corner.

The majority images Kevin has in his posts are not his, they are presumably googled images. Some images that Kevin posts are of his own art that he created. Kevin sometimes incorporates videos into his posts about things he finds interesting, relating to homelessness. He, also, does the same regarding articles. Kevin does not have an “About Me” section on his blog, though he does describe himself on other websites. Kevin seems to post whatever is on his mind, frequently expressing the struggles of homelessness, his opinions on homelessness, shedding light on politics regarding homelessness, and giving updates on his life.

I feel as though Kevin uses his blog more as a diary and therefore it doesn’t really resonate well with readers. Kevin has 91 followers and doesn’t get frequent comments or shares on his blog posts. His blog post titles don’t really grab the attention – and are usually a few words with little meaning such as “Back to School”, “Art Stuff”, “This Stuff Happens All the Time.” I would suggest to Kevin that he makes his titles more specific and attention-grabbing so that the reader would be interested.

Kevin sometimes interacts with his readers in a negative way. For example, he has an article called “Tough” and “You Cannot Judge Me” where he calls out readers that are offended by his posts and also takes a defensive, accusatory stance. I would suggest that Kevin would be less accusatory in his posts if he wanted to gain more of a following. Kevin, also, interacts with readers by asking for donations and thanking individuals in separate posts.

The posts that seem to gain most comments from readers are the posts that shed light on homeless issues in a coherent manner. His post “Anyone can Become Handling” got four comments from supporters. I would suggest that Kevin continue to write informative posts so people have a better understanding of the realities homeless people face.

I would suggest that Kevin takes a more organized approach to his blog, as well. There is no About Me section for Kevin’s blog which I feel is crucial. He, also, has so many posts that I feel are not necessary. Many of the posts are not relevant to his goal which he has stated to be: educating people about the reality of homelessness. I would encourage Kevin to create posts focused more on the politics of homelessness, what he goes through, and less on the minute details. I would encourage him to engage with his readers. I would encourage Kevin to continue to write about any discrimination he faces, as well. Posts like that are popular as well amongst his blog.

Kevin does well at explaining the harsh life of being homeless. He, also, shows within his blog that the homeless are hard working and misunderstood. Kevin just needs to write more organized pieces.

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