First Day of School Thoughts

Yesterday was my first day of 15th grade, or junior year, as we call it, of college. It felt like any normal day, waking up early, putting on makeup, and driving to school. However, later on that night, I couldn’t go to sleep and couldn’t pinpoint a reason for what was keeping me up this late. Then it finally dawned on me as to the reason for my first-day existential crisis. The reason? My future job.

My current major at MTSU is New Media Communication which has now been renamed to Media Arts. However, this doesn’t help in me trying to explain exactly what my major is or what I want to do with this major. I do want to work with social media. Always have ever since I first got on social media in 2009, roughly. But my problem is, I’m not sure exactly what my title, as a content creator, would be for this job. Secondly, who is hiring people such as me for these jobs, and thirdly, how I can make a sufficient living off this job if I decide to make it my living.

I want to do social media work, but since I am only a junior and am just now starting to take significant classes in my major, I am also keeping the film industry in the back of my mind. I wouldn’t want to be a director per say, but more behind the scenes work would work for me. I am currently taking a Single Camera I class and like I said, I wouldn’t want to necessarily direct a film myself, but I would love to be doing behind the scenes work, and with some knowledge of film, I think it would be a lot of good information to keep under my belt.

Communication is such a broad field and that aspect of my major has its pros and cons. Pros are that I can do a lot of different jobs using this major skill, communication is needed in every type of job and way of life, and there are a lot of different ways I can use these communication skills in my day to day life. However, the cons include, the more people learn how to create such content on their own, the less likely they are to pay someone else to create such content for them rather than making it themselves. Plus, I am not sure what exact salary would be offered for this kind of position, or what companies would be looking for someone such as myself.

What do you think? I do really love working with social media and creating content. I love learning about how social media shapes our lives, how it has changed the way we live and work, and also such silly things as to how certain memes become popular and other such subjects. Plus, the thought of finally being an upperclassman in college is pretty daunting in and of

Also, the thought of finally being an upperclassman in college is pretty daunting in and of itself. This may also be another thought that factored into my existential crisis that has continued since I started classes again. Please, tell me your thoughts or feel free to reach out and give me your thoughts about my position and major at the moment.

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Day 3: Currumbin Wildlife and Hello Auckland!

Day 3 consisted of waking up early by 7:30 am, packing our luggage from our Air B&B in Gold Coast, and heading out to get some coffee before heading to the Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary to see everything from koalas to kangaroos to wombats. If you know anyone who has told you anything about Australia, you may be used to hearing things like this rant that my favorite Youtuber Mini Ladd did a couple of years ago on a Twitter Q&A.

After getting some coffee and discussing plans for the rest of the day such as leaving Gold Coast to fly to Auckland later that afternoon, my sister Emma’s 23rd birthday the next day, and also sitting lazily by 2 adorable dogs and petting them while drinking my iced coffee.

After finishing up our coffee and late breakfast snacks, we drove our rented car to the Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary and walked across the street to the entrance. Plus, with each ticket you bought to come in the sanctuary, your money was donated to the closest animal hospital. As soon as we entered the park, we immediately looked to our right to see the koalas sleeping in their trees and also to the kiosk where you could get your pictures taken with these furry gray teddy bears. We decided to get one family picture and I decided to get another picture with one individually just for me later. All the animals we saw had been rescued from the wild, taken in for medical problems, or other ailments. There were all kinds of animals such as emus, koalas, kangaroos, wombats, Tasmanian Devils, quokkas, lizards, poisonous toads, alligators, and much more. Although I must say that my top 3 animals I got to see where the koalas, the kangaroos, and the bilbies. After seeing all these animals, we went back so I could get a personalized photo with a koala and was told that the long line would only take 10 minutes max; we ended up waiting 40 minutes instead. All koalas have a very distinct smell, sometimes it’s good, sometimes it’s bad, but in my case, my koala smelled like fresh laundry right out of the dryer. I stroked its fur before letting it go to be photoed with the next person and headed to purchase souvenirs for my two friends, Kim and Maddie.

After a long day of looking at lovely animals, we had to head to the airport to leave for our Virgin Australia flight to Auckland, New Zealand. I must say, security in Australia is a lot more technologically advanced than the security in American airports and a lot faster. I know that to a lot of people being a vegan seems more like a burden than anything, but here in Australia, with a few exceptions, most places are very vegan-friendly.

After taking our flight from Gold Coast to Auckland, which was about 3 hours, we finally landed in Auckland, exhausted and ready to eat and go to sleep. We found a 24 hr grocery store right down the street from our Air B&B apartment and decided to pick up some breakfast food and also some snacks as well. Exhausted and full, we decided to head to bed and ready to wake up for a new day of adventure ahead.

Sincerely,

Lydia

(More updates to come!)

Getting to Australia

We started Tuesday off by getting up early and making sure to have completely packed the night before. We woke up knowing we would have a 5 Step Journey ahead of us. The 5 Step Journey looks a little something like this:

5 Step Travel Plan

  1.  Drive to Atlanta
  2. Fly from Atlanta to LAX
  3. Fly from LAX to Sydney
  4. Fly from Sydney to Gold Coast
  5. Rent a car and drive to our Air B&B in Gold Coast

Driving to Atlanta was no big deal between coloring, sleeping, or listening to my new Stephen King ebook 11.22.63. I am used to driving from home back to MTSU and that isn’t even bad. So driving to Atlanta, while it was longer, was not bad at all.

Flying from Atlanta to LAX at 4 hours or so was also not bad. I decided to watch some movies as well as the updated X-Files episodes. I was more nervous about my flying from LAX to Sydney than anything else.

For anyone who doesn’t like being on a plane for long periods of time, I would not recommend flying from LAX to Sydney for you then. I have been on decently long flights, but I have never been on a flight that was 15 hours. Between falling asleep while trying to watch a movie, to intentionally falling asleep or taking a nap, our time left on the plane seemed to drag on. When I first boarded the plane, the First Class cabin had small compact beds to lay down in with a pull out screen in which to watch their programs. Needless to say, between trying not to let my legs cramp up or fall asleep to actually trying to sleep, I would definitely have loved a bed more than a slightly leaned back seat, but I managed.

After we landed in Syndey, we had a little bit of time to kill in the airport before our flight to Gold Coast that would be at 11:15 pm our time. One thing I am already loving about Australia is that it is SO vegan/vegetarian-friendly! Melbourne is actually in the Top 10 list of most vegan-friendly cities in the world! Taking Virgin Australia to Gold Coast was only an hour and a half and with a quick nap and a couple word searches, we had landed.

Finally, we napped for a couple of hours and got ourselves settled, we then decided to get dinner with our family out at a place called The Collective. Basically a common sitting area, but there are multiple menus so you can order from whichever restaurant you like, all in one location! They even had a two column menu for Vegans and Vegetarians that included salads, chips (fries, to us Americans), and vegan cheese pizza. That is one of the best vegan pizzas I have ever had! A waitress asked me how I liked the pizza and asked if I was a vegan too. I told her I was and had been since August and she recommended another wonderful place to eat not far from our house here in Gold Coast.

Overall, tired and exhausted, Australia has already amazed me with its eating choices, it’s driving on the right side of the car but the left side of the road, and also its stunning views out my airplane window. Cannot wait to have an amazing new day here tomorrow!

– Sincerely,

Lydia

Can Bloggers Be Sued? Yes, they can.

You may have seen in the news recently that big businesses are getting sued, organizations, but what about content creators and bloggers? Can they get sued too? Yes, they can.

During the midst of election season, a 70-year-old blogger named Webster Tarpley  posted to this blog, “Where is Melania Trump? It is also widely known that Melania was not a working model but rather a high-end escort. ” Tarpley posted this 3 months ago. The Daily Mail posted similar allegations against Mrs. Trump closely following Tarpley’s blog post. Both the blog post and the publication by the Daily Mail caught Melania and her attorney’s attention. Mrs. Trump and her lawyer are wanting to sue Daily Mail and Mr. Tarpley for $150 million dollars for defamation. She and her attorney’s said, “These are some of the most inflammatory allegations possible. These are some of the most inflammatory allegations possible.” Tarpley’s attorney, John Owen, declared that his client is a political blogger who likes to discuss political matters with his audience and that he shared information that was rumored on other outlets of social media and his client felt there should be a public dialogue about the rumored past of the prospective First Lady of the United States.

Since this debate  is on-going, I do see how Mr. Tarpley wanted to question the path of the rumored past of the prospective First Lady, but I do believe that is the Daily Mail who is at fault for posting such an article without complete confidence in its accuracy.

In January 2016 in Pennslyvania,  The Standard Speaker posted that a local blogger named Mark Robbins was being sued $4,000 by former congressional hopeful Andy Ostrowski over allegations that Mr. Ostrowski was posting  “false things on his blog about plaintiff and circulating it, and other communications, widely by email and otherwise.” Ostrowski says that Robbin had  been “impugning my character, suggesting I’m involved in all kinds of illicit activities.” Robbin claimed he got his information about Ostrowski from the Disciplinary Board of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania and stood by all of his posts about Ostrowski. Robbin claimed Ostrowski’s motives for providing counsel to a women Robin believes  “Ostrowski has no valid reason to help.” Robbin also pointed out that Ostrowski who has a suspended law license has a history of drug abuse and  that abuse may be continuing. One of Robin’s most defamatory posts was taken down, but Robin doesn’t recall having it deleted in the first place. Ostrowski says he is never one to shy away from his past, but lies and falsehoods, he cannot handle. “Robbins alleged the lawsuit amounts to retaliation against him for filing a complaint with the disciplinary board last month regarding Ostrowski’s conduct with the woman.”

Since I am not sure how this court case ended, or if it is still in motion, I do believe that public figures do need to realize that people may try to dig up their past and question motives more than others may. If Robbin’s correct in Ostrowski’s motives for this suit, and it is a retaliation for Robbin’s complaint, than Ostrowski may need to think more critically about his actions before he puts himself in a more public light in the future.

Overall, bloggers do have their right to freedom of speech, but need to be careful to share only what information is their personal opinion, but to also make sure whatever they post they can back up with proof for their statements.

Local blogger sued for defamation by attorney (Source: http://standardspeaker.com/news/local-blogger-sued-for-defamation-by-attorney-1.2000541)

Trump Lawsuit (Source: https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/public-safety/in-libel-suit-melania-trump-says-maryland-blogger-held-reckless-disregard-for-the-truth/2016/11/12/f9074a12-a76d-11e6-8042-f4d111c862d1_story.html?tid=hybrid_collaborative_1_na)

 

 

 

Live streaming: The New Thing

Live streaming has become a recently huge way to call audience through a multitude of different platforms from Facebook Live, Periscope, YouTube Live, and many others. But why do we love watching live streams, or broadcasting a live stream so much? Well for me personally, I love to watch live streams of my favourite Youtubers because it allows me to somehow connect with them and the other people watching the stream. As social creatures that humans are, we like to constantly know what others are up to, and we also love to constantly show others we are in turn, up to. But why else do we live stream? To show others what we are up to, or to try to make our life seem more entertaining. I believe that it is a combination of both depending on who you are. Famous YouTubers love to live stream with their audience because it allows fans to ask questions and for them to see a little sliver into their favourite Youtuber’s life even just for 30 minutes.

Besides Facebook Live, Youtube Live, and Periscope, there are other platforms that are also available for live streaming such as YouNow, Twitch, and Meerkat.

YouNow (Free) – YouNow is a popular platform by many teenagers as well as successful Youtubers across the world. I personally have participated in a few live streams on YouNow watching Youtubers such as Danisnotonfire, AmazingPhil, and others. YouNow is known for their quick fixes should a stream freeze or shut down. In my personal experience, out of the hundreds of live streams I have seen, only 1 or 2 had major connectivity issues, and they may have been a poor wifi connection and not YouNow itself. YouNow is also commonly used because it is able to keep up the webcasts with enormous amounts of people watching, and that is something to applaud.

Twitch (Up to 8.99 a month) – while not as Free as YouNow, Twitch is another live streaming platform used by a lot of Youtuber gamers such as TheGamingTerririsor, GassyMexican, and others like them. Twitch is a wonderful way to stream and also game at the same time with little to no interruptions to your stream, a way to donate to these gamers should you wish to do so, and a subscription fee to them as another way to help them out. Personally, I have not been very well acquainted with Twitch, but it is definitely a platform that will continue to grow and expand as time goes on.

Google Hangouts (free)- Google Hangout is similar to Twitch in that users can get a notification or email inviting them to the stream where one person hosts and multiple other people can communicate through chat and video to the host. Google Hangout can also intergrate Google Voice allowing users to make free “domestic” phone calls from their computers. Although not having used Google Hangout, I have heard fr

Twitter: Blessing or a Curse?

Social networks have come a long way since the days of MySpace, one of the leaders of this new age of technology and social media is Twitter. Twitter officially launched on March 21, 2006, after Jack Dorsey became obsessed with this idea of “status,” letting others know what you’re up to. By fall of 2006, Twitter had over thousands of users. The Twitter that started back then has changed and morphed over the years has it has grown and expanded into what it is today.

Now, most people use Twitter to tell people their thoughts on issues or to update them on what’s happening. That has mostly remained the same but more people are using Twitter to sell products, to troll others, or to entertain, and many others. But in my personal Twitter experience, I have seen these three methods of using Twitter popping up more and more.

Selling products is a major business on Twitter whether it’s makeup, clothing, phones cases, you name it! You can probaby find a use trying to sell it. But how do you know if this account is REALLY trying to see you something, or just scamming you? You have to use your best judgement. Personally, I have known several classmates or friends to have bought something off of Twitter. My advice? Use your common sense and do your research. (https://twitter.com/BabyAnimaIPicss/status/777374042261229568)

Entertainment is more of a personal taste for what interest you personally as you can follow accounts that post tweets you find entertaining as to see those types of tweets more often. For example, I follow a lot of animal Twitter account such as @CuteOverloads which posts photos of adorable animals that make me smile as well as @BabyAnimals. I love dogs more than most people I know, so getting to see more pictures of doggies and other small animals is fine with me.

(https://twitter.com/CuteOverloads/status/777358494286618625)

Trolling has been around since the beginning of the Internet and before then. Trolling can be from photos that you have to click on a link to see, to someone tweeting a whole story about going to get a McDonald’s milkshake at 2 am like Josh Raby did in April. In my personal opinion, trolling is best when you can’t tell if it’s real or if it’s fake like in Josh’s story. (He later declared he did go get a McDonald’s milkshake at 2 am, but the rest of the story was make up) However, he got several thousands if not millions of people’s attention by developing a storyline, characters, and using strong language including some wild swear words to make it all seem more believeable. (Source: https://www.buzzfeed.com/ryanhatesthis/a-viral-story-of-weird-love-and-milkshakes?utm_term=.pnXqnR4kN#.ixLxZoEyN)

Whether you have seen these instances of Twitter being used to either troll, sell, or entertain,  we all can agree that Twitter has cahgned. Twitter as a whole has been morphed into a way to keep up with current trending topics, but also to connect with others, including celebrities in a more personal way. Drama, selling, crisis, trolling, entertainment, and more? Just browse Twitter.

 

Has Technology Gone Too Far?

Have you ever suspected a partner or spouse may be cheating on you? Worried that your pet may be jumping on your bed without you knowing?

Well, hello Durmet Smarttress! This Spanish-made mattress that can send a ping to your smartphone whenever your mattress is “in use.”

The Internet met this mattress with a lot of skepticism as to if it was even real, but the company spokesperson Antonio Muiño said Durmet Smarttress is, indeed, a real business and has been making sleep-related items since 2012. You may be asking yourself who is wanting to buy this type of mattress? Apparently multiple buyers according to the company, but they declined to say how many in total.

Although Spain is not the top European country when it comes to infidelity, Durmet is making a wise but bold movie by selling this type of technology. The question is, has technology gone too far when it comes to invading people’s homes, or does this just go to show how much, even couples and partners, cannot ever truly trust each other?

The app can send you information about your mattress’s happenings such as its speed, and intensity and impact per minute, and can also show pressure points. This can show if your dog, or potentially a cheater could be in your bed.

As Durmet concludes it includes their ad statement,”“If your partner isn’t faithful, at least your mattress is.”

Source: http://recode.net/2016/04/17/smart-mattress-bed-sex-cheat/

 

Online Music in Trouble

According to new posts from Wired.com, numerous music websites such as Pandora and Soundcloud could go under soon if things don’t change and change fast.

Soundcloud and Pandora are different from each other as far as providing music, but both seem to be struggling financially. It is rumored that Pandora is up for sale. Soundcloud is different from Apple Music and Spotify in that artists can upload music or broadcasts all by themselves, for free, without the hassle of legal documents or a middle man. In order for music to be uploaded to Spotify, people usually have to pay their middle men like CD Baby or Tunecore to upload their music to Spotify for them.

Soundcloud has become a popular place for up and coming musicians to upload their music straight from their device. Losing Soundcloud would be a major blow to new musicians, but also for popular artists who may have not copied their work onto another device. If Soundcloud did indeed crash, then all of the music ever uploaded would disappear along with the website.

However, an organization called Archive Team has been looking at helping Soundcloud for a while in hopes that they can save people’s work from disappearing entirely. Archive Team has always kept to its goal of preserving the web and managing sites from being obliterated along with their uploaded masterpieces.

But as Wired. com reminds us all, not everything lasts forever, not even the Internet. Now that is a scary thought.

 

What is Technomyopia?

Technomyopia: is a strange phenomenon that causes us to overestimate the potential short-term impacts of a new technology.

So essentially, we always think that the next big thing in technology is going to wipe out anything before it, and we will all be doomed.

Throughout our developing of technology over the past century, we have always expressed certain fears and excitements about the future of technology ahead of us. But this hasn’t always been the case. Once TV was introduced, everyone was so afraid that this new advancement would entirely wipe out radio as a whole. But it in fact did the opposite, TV was created by using building blocks that radio had provided.

Back in the 1970’s, we had three main industries pumping out information simultaneously: Broadcast & Motion Picture Industry, Print & Publishing Industry, and Computer Industry. But after the Internet became a widely available resource to everyone, more people began using the internet to converge all of these industries together. So now, businesses didn’t have to use just one medium to reach their customers, but all three at the same time! This transformation came about in the 2000’s and continues today with all three of the industries combined to make up the Internet.

The only downfall to having all of these industries combined is that if one falls, all of them will fall together. This is called the Chaos Theory. And this is why we must be cautious about the present, but not let that inhibit our excitement for the future.

As they say, the best is yet to come.