I came across TacomaWorld.com one day after I had received a Toyota Tacoma from my parents as my first vehicle. I have always had kind of a passion for Toyota vehicles since my Dad owned a Humvee when I was a little kid that dumped out, leading him to buy a Toyota Land Cruiser, which came to be one of the most loved family vehicles ever. It’s what helped develop within me a passion for adventure, exploring the unknown, and navigating through the mountains to find places that provided limitless beauty and awe. We took our Toyota to many secluded camping spots and hiking trails, family ski trips, hockey tournaments, and carpools to sports and school. It completed any mission we threw at it with comfort and dependability, and lead me to my current passion for my truck and my dedication to keeping it fresh and ready to go. I have spent hours digging for information on this blog over the years, starting with simple and effective ways to make it more adventure capable, avoid getting ripped off at the dealership, and progressing to altering the suspension/body of the vehicle. The goal is to use this blog as an information resource and to make the most educated and solid long-term decisions when spending money on a vehicle.
How It’s Done
The concept of “rhetorical awareness” exists within all members of the site; the overall reason why the site exists is for Toyota owners to put forth and share their knowledge with one another to solve potential problems, offer assistance or share any experiences. There are a lot of expert mechanics and founders/owners of companies within the industry that offer up their expertise and it provides a very reliable and “persuasive” resource for referencing and future projects. There is a lot of history of people who love their Toyota, and this provides context as well as who the stakeholders are in this rhetorical situation; people who know a lot about their particular Toyota vehicles and people who want to know more. I feel like this situation is a common rhetorical situation, where there is an overall subject (Toyota trucks in this case) with a forum of people exchanging knowledge and materials to get certain projects done.
The design of this website, TacomaWorld.com, which provides users with A-Z information about their Toyota truck and step-by-step tutorials on how to properly wrench on their vehicles is very well organized. It is broken down into different categories of interest with tabs at the top of the page, depending on if you are looking for a “how-to” or maybe looking for a specific part to buy for your exact truck. This is mainly based off of “information design” as discussed on Purdue OWL, as once the user knows what modification or repair they want to make, there is a dedicated section containing all threads on that subject. This design is based on making the sought after information as accessible as possible for the target user. These forum threads are created with a broad title, such as “Ongoing Lift Install Thread – How-To”, which is more general, and once the thread is opened, there are a list of materials, pictures, and written instructions, and sometimes video that shows how to install parts on various applications.
Since the audience of this forum/blog is extremely specified towards Toyota truck enthusiasts, they are able to organize the different sections of the website into what they know their users are looking for most. There are regional sections so that members can plan trail expeditions or events, or a “wheels/tires” and “towing” section for folks who are looking for specific material relevant to that certain topic. This is similar to other forum style websites like Reddit, where a pool of knowledge is broken down into various different current topics or questions about life. I think with statistics about their audience/users, forum websites like these can tailor valuable information in order to make it easier to access overall as well as more useful to the end receiver. Basically, sites like these are the reason that paper books and magazines are becoming less and less relevant.