Back In My Day…

For this post, I’d like to backtrack to the first week of this seminar where we listed the pros and cons of the technological and internet advances. We listed how the internet has given us easy access to endless information with only a few simple clicks on our keyboard, which could ultimately serve as a learning tool. On the other hand, we spoke about how the internet and our online presence detaches us from the real world around us. Many of us become so consumed by our smartphones and tablets that we freak out a little if our phone dies midway through our family dinner because then we might have to…talk to each other, and who would want to do that in 2016?  We also touched on the frightening phenomenon of cyber bullying.

When I think of all this- the pros and the cons- I think of how differently my younger sister, 13, grew up compared to me. We’re only 8 years apart, however, *old lady voice* back in my day, I didn’t have access to all that she has. Every time she complains about homework assignments, I realize how much easier she really does have it compared to me. Granted, I had a computer growing up, but it only ran at about a 1/4 of the speed that her Macbook does. I also feel that Generation Z grew up way too fast due to social media. Which I notice when my sister says “hey, look at this, isn’t this hilarious?” and proceeds to flip her phone my way to me a funny video she found on Instagram. When I was her age I used to spend maybe an hour at most online, and the rest of my free time outside riding bikes with my friends.

This video I found online breaks down the impact of technology on children –

What do you think of this video? What are some things that kids do now a days that really makes you feel “old” ?


Is TIDAL Actually Helping Artists?

Music is one of the biggest forms of art that constantly undergoes different forms of copyright every time a new delivery platform becomes mainstream. On October 28, 2014 rapper Jay-Z launched his subscription-based music streaming app Tidal. Unlike its main competitors, Spotify and Apple, Tidal doesn’t welcome users with a short-term free trial, rather it starts when you pay £9.99/$9.99 for your first month of access. Tidal justifies their overlook of free trials based on their aims to be the music streaming app that pays the highest percentages to musicians and songwriters. But are these strict copyright restrictions really helping artists? Or do they just give consumers a reason to attain music through cheaper outlets that won’t necessarily count toward artists stream and sale numbers?

Let’s take Kanye West and his 7th studio album The Life of Pablo (TLOP) for example. West, being part-owner of Tidal, released TLOP solely through Tidal. Though I’m sure there were some crazed fans that signed up for Tidal, paying £9.99/$9.99, solely to listen to TLOP, the album became one of the most popular downloads on the prominent torrenting site The Pirate Bay. Only 2 days after it’s Tidal release, TLOP had already been illegally downloaded more than half a million times. That number has skyrocketted somewhere close to 55 million.

Many artists, like Kanye release their albums solely through certain streaming apps to create consumer incentives to signup for the chosen app. However, I think that the number of illegal downloads definately shows that methods like that may actually backfire. I believe that if Kanye released TLOP through, let’s say iTunes, many fans would have paid the cost of the album (usually anywhere from $13-$17) rather than download it illegaly because they don’t want to pay a monthly fee for Tidal.

Do you guys agree? If you were a music artist how would you like your music to be delivered?


Kanye West’s ‘The Life of Pablo’ illegally downloaded in record numbers

Think Before You Post

When I hear the words “online visibility” I automatically think of people seeing something that I wouldn’t want them seeing. This associated thought is weird, however, because after careful examination of all my online profiles I can assure myself that I’m (still) ok with anyone seeing anything that I have shared online. I guess that’s because I only share what I’d want EVERYONE to see. I know all online platforms have privacy settings that you can customize, whether it’s to make your posts private or block specific people like your boss, siblings or parents from seeing certain material. However, making online posts private really means something like “kind of, sort of private…for now..” at most. This is because there’s always things that people can do to make all your “private” and even deleted material viewable again. I’ve always made sure to ask myself “would I be ok with everyone seeing this?…Mom, dad, potential company recruiter?” before posting things on the internet. My online profiles reflect me and my interests, so my Instagram and Facebook are just pictures and posts related to music, pop culture, traveling, food, work, family and a few selfies here and there. I never show or say too much, just enough.


Are You Linked…In?

Described as “the world’s largest professional network” and “the most important page on the web you’ll ever have,” LinkedIn has found success by facilitating the connection between professionals. With more than 313 million users spread across 200 countries and areas, LinkedIn is a professional online community helps users find internships, jobs, and even career advice. Users begin by creating an online profile where they can link to current and previous companies they’ve worked at and describe their roles and achievements at each. Ultimately, a LinkedIn profile becomes almost like a public, digital resume that cant be seen by key decision makers, so it’s important to keep it updated and polished. Because employers are constantly looking for greater additions to their team, they utilize LinkedIn just as much as job seekers do. LinkedIn has also been serving as a marketing tool for many companys, where they can promote themselves, create partnerships and even clients.

Do you have a LinkedIn? Do you make sure that your profiles on other online communities (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter etc.) reflect the same professionalism that your LinkedIn shows?

Additional sources –

Thank You Yahoo! Answers

I know I’m not the only person who’s typed in a question into Google and eventually found themselves on Yahoo!Answers.

Yahoo! Answers was launched by Yahoo! in 2005 as a community-driven question-and-answer site. It has wide range of question categories, including art, business, food, family, politics and sports. As long as questions follow the Yahoo! community guidelines, you’re pretty much free to ask away. That is, after signing up for a free Yahoo! account. Each question asked has the potential to start a conversation. It’s quite common to see back-and-forth interaction between the person who posted the question and those who answered it, or even between two people who answered the same question. Ultimately it can create something similar to what we do with here with these blog post and comments.

However, because the site is community-driven, it’s not the most reliable source to get factual answers. Despite all the inaccuracies you may come across, Yahoo! Answers remains quite popular. I believe that it’s popularity and existence is based solely on users who continue to ask and answer questions.

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Old Vs New? No. Old Meets New

Media convergence isn’t just the act of combining previous mass media outlets with newer ones to be up-to-date, but rather the economic strategy behind doing so.

When I thought solely on the economic aspect of media convergence the first thing that popped into my head were all the major franchises that trace back to novels or comic books. For example, the respective creators of Transformers, Harry Potter,  Batman, Superman and The Dark Knight Rises have all been able to capitalize in major ways through media convergence. Their ideas that started out as comic books like Batman, Transformers, and The Dark Knight Rises or books like Harry Potter have been built up to become billion dollar brands. Each one of those titles has gone from print to movie theatre screens, action figures, websites, Halloween costumes, theme park rides and everything in between.

Knowing how to wipe off the dust from an old idea and capitalize on it through newer mediums is just as important as creating ideas from scratch. I believe that upon recruiting new employees, many companies are as equally interested to see what new ideas and strategies a person can bring with them, as well as how a person can take what the company already has an make it bigger and better.

Is there anything that you believe could grow through media convergence but hasn’t? Why do you think that is?


Superman The Ride at Six Flags Great Adventure in Trenton, New JerseySuperman-The-Ride-Key-Art-1

Harry Potter and Hermione Granger Halloween costumes from PartyCity.Com

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Transformers Optimus Prime action figure





Technology, Entertainment and Design Talks…aka TED Talks

With the over-flood of academic sources the Internet offers, most of us have already explored through some and chosen our favorite go-to’s. For me, that source is TED talks. I see them as the epitome of interactive learning of this generation. The talks range from science, health, and research, to culture and media and everything in between. Speakers are given up to 18 minutes to lecture on their subject of expertise, and can include slideshows, videos, statistics and audience-engaging exercises while doing so. I think it’s also imperative to understand the science behind the 18-minute rule.

Because this module revolves around major concepts- network, society and media- it’s very easy to find Ted Talks that back up what we learn in our lectures and seminars.

During our week 2 seminar we discussed the negative and positive affects of social media. Many of us agreed that social media can sometimes disconnect us from the world around us. This first video is of social media historian Allison Graham speaking on how social media (ironically) makes us unsocial, she backs up what we discussed and gives us more insight as well.

In this second video, Daryl D’Souza, a co-owner of the Toronto-based Lou Dawg’s restaurants and marketing professor at Ryerson University talks about how social media has a great potential to help a brand/company gain a global reach. This emphasizes what we’ve discussed about learning to use platforms to our greatest advantage. This video really shows how the speakers can make powerful connects between two different topics.

Do you enjoy Ted Talks? Why or why not?

Do you think watching Ted Talks is the same as being in a classroom lecture? Or better or worse?

Also, comment a link to your favorite Ted Talk, even if it doesn’t revolve around the main focuses of this module.