The Power of Swarming (Social Media on Popular Media)

This clip of the TV show Grey’s Anatomy gives a perfect example of the power of Twitter and how the senior leader who wanted to shut it down became a believer of twitter as a teaching medium of international reach. ––shezthatgirl

Twitter (or tweeting) can be considered “micro-blogging”, where users, under anonymous handles, share their thoughts, information, data, news, gossip, etc. using 140 characters or less.

The depiction of Twitter use in this video is, of course, exaggerated––I know that my gut feeling, however outdated or conservative it may seem, would be to feel uncomfortable being operated on while the surgeons tweet on their smartphones. However, this episode illustrates one of the key points set out in today’s reading (Gilmor, Citizen Media):

“Preserving old-fashioned privacy was impossible, [David Brin] said, because modern technology would overwhelm us with its snooping power and the collection of vast amounts of data.” (60)
“And they’re doing it by informing each other, in an open source manner that brings the community’s best minds to bear on common problems.” (53)

Two heads are better than one, and this––now widespread––form of info-sharing and data swarming multiplies the effect (positive or negative) by billions. And not just within the twittersphere but it is happening in the Web and flowing in and out––online and offline––of everyday life.


Riley Rants and She is Right

Why are the big bad companies trying to trick girls into buying princesses?

Cognitive psychology tells us that media acts as socialization agents. And we are (or we should be) all aware of it, and it doesn’t matter how old you are to see that in action. Riley, in the video, is only four years old. The effects of media is clear to her and is a very visible phenomenon for her. She just doesn’t have all the answers and solutions…yet. When will everyone hear it? When will we share the kind of burning passion Riley has and take a stand?

the discrepancy between the “ideal” usage of Facebook and how most users interact with the website always amazes me. but what really resonate with me, however superficially, are the promotional video contents put out by Facebook (and other big companies like myspace). the quality, the optimism, the surreality, the idealism. it’s all in there. but are they really?


Away from the talk of how useful Facebook’s new Graph Search will eventually prove to be, this rather dream-like video promoting the service also caught my eye.

It suggests Facebook is as much afraid of the growing misconception of digital dualism, as it is of being seen to invade privacy.

The advert encourages the idea that people who use Facebook are also more social away from the site.

The fundamentally flawed notion that the ‘real-world’ is different and separate to the ‘virtual’ one overlooks the fact the two have always been integrated.

As this advert sets out to make clear, there’s no such thing as complete disconnection.

Facebook is still driving the behaviour and how we experience the world.

We’re still looking at the outdoors as a potential update to share later.

The idea it’s a zero-sum game and time spent on Facebook detracts from time spent in the…

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what does media mean to me?

Media. Medium. It’s something I always find myself in the middle of, surrounded.

It’s in my phone, my laptop, my morning paper. It’s at my friends’ fingertips, at the movies, and even shows up in my dreams. Media is what my perception of the world depends on––leeches on––to keep me busy, updated, satisfied.

Media is my friend, my role model, my playground, and my home. It entertains me. I let it identify me. It keeps me small.

I’m not complaining though; ever since I was just a wimpy kid, visual media––especially films and video productions––captivated me. I grew from a moviegoer to a filmmaker, and while striving to create my own media, to produce something and contribute to the greater network of media, I finally recognized the place I was coming from––busy and blind from watching, admiring, emulating, and consuming films, purely one-sided.

To what extent do media affect my thoughts? How about my actions?
Does what I see and hear become a direct experience for me?

Media, to me, is like a pandora’s box. Or so I think it is like a pandora’s box (if not, I’m just paranoid). It is everywhere, it is pleasing to look at, it is easy to consume, and it is fun. And it is hard as hell to stop consuming.

Media is a drug.