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Archive for September, 2013

Media and the times we live in

Media is everything and anything. Vague right? But it is because that’s the time and place we live in today. From the brands on our shirts, to the first thing some of us check every morning – our emails – it is everywhere. Media is communication, whether that is promoting a brand or calling home that you’ll be late for supper. Thus the definition of media would be then be ‘medium’, it is anything that acts as an intermediary platform to facilitate and deliver messages across.

The millennial generation (1980’s-2000’s) is probably the most exposed generation of media. We cannot have a waking moment without being bombarded by advertisement, having the urge to message our friends, or hearing the latest events happening in the world. As of our generation, we are probably the most associated with digital media – social media. It is what continuously keeps us updated and connected.

With all this interconnectedness, has this brought upon a new business of its own. Because of the high usage of social media and online media, has advertisement companies, software development companies, decided to turn their focus and attention on digital media and less on traditional media (e.g. television, newspapers, magazines, radio – mediums some of us may consider as ‘has run its course’). Cost of distribution of media had dramatically fallen in recent years. It is a lot easier and cheaper to get ones word across when videos, advertisement, written articles, can easily go ‘viral’. Because of this connectedness, it is more convenient for advertisers to develop the image of their brand. And we are the reason because of it. They no longer need to aggressively force upon their brand but instead, if it’s ‘good’, we’ll share, subscribe to it and promote the brand for them. Essentially, they don’t need to spend a cent after the production costs.

With all that said, the definition of media will change once again in the future. Media, I believe, will change as technology advances. It progresses with technology and the definition will continuously be refined. We don’t know what is in store but that is what makes studying and observing media exciting. Whether in the future it’ll be implanted chips in our brain, or the recent wearable technologies like the Google glasses or the Samsung smart watch, will there be new opportunities for ‘media’ to appear.


London: A town where cultures clash

Ferrari-Egg-0Hey guys, back again with another blog. I recently came across this article from Jalopnik – a very popular car enthusiast site. It talks about a recent event where an exotic car owner had an egg thrown at them. And here we go again, Main Street vs Wall Street. Here we go again with the melodrama. Fortunately though, today I won’t be talking about class warfare per se, as that topic deserves a whole blog on its own. Today, I’ll be addressing my issue with this article as they spin this event into class warfare when in actuality is a deeper issue in London – a clash between two cultures – the residents and the frequent tourists from Saudi Arabia, the Guelph. It is my duty (or I’d like to believe) to aware the audience of ‘Throughthatdoor’ about what is really going on in London. And I think the documentary called ‘Millionaire Boy Racers’ broadcasted on Channel4.com tells a compelling story.

Within the past decade, there has been a huge surge of wealth in the middle eastern countries. The ‘Saudis’ would frequently visit London in particular during the summers to flee the desert heat, and the overall social repression that their country enforces. In their country, social interaction between men and women outside the family are often discouraged, alcohol/smoking is prohibited and there are no casinos, bars, or clubs. So, London – the central capital of Britain is the perfect nest for the deprived young adults to visit during the summer.

However, though they bring money to London’s economy – the hotels, the local shops, the restaurants –  they also bring their very fast, loud exotic cars. To a car enthusiast like myself, I would be thrilled to see the streets of Toronto flooded with them; however, the residents of London thinks otherwise. The residents think of these tourists as reckless, obnoxious people. The cars would be heard revving late into the nights and they would be breaking speed limits within residential areas. To the residents, these tourists are dangerous and pose a threat to the tranquility and safety of their town.

So is this still a problem of class warfare? Or is it a clash between cultures. One of the exotic car owner interviewed in the documentary said he would often go into a coffee shop and come out finding gum and spit on his car. Another owner said people are jealous, they ask and assume that it is their parent’s wealth that affords them these cars and and perhaps it is true, but it’s not the type of questions he wanted to be asked.  So perhaps there is a story to be told about class warfare but this article (I feel) is trying to fuel a war that is really between the unfortunates and the misinformed. I suppose the next suitable blog should be about: “Why the government saved the banks and not your pension” or something of that degree.

Links to documentary and article:

http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=bce_1357533657

http://jalopnik.com/class-warfare-breaks-out-as-londoner-eggs-woman-driving-730138135


Twitter’s IPO

What’s more about Media than one of the largest social media platforms going for its IPO (initial public offering). Yes, Twitter! The social media company is said to be trading in the public markets soon (exact date unknown but expected late 2013 or early 2014). I wonder what changes will be in store for the upcoming months. A public company will be operated much differently than a private one because of investors pressuring them to generate revenue/returns. So perhaps Twitter might start rolling out products that may jeopardize user’s confidence. Maybe Twitter might infringe on user’s privacy for the sake of ad sales, or simply bombarding your twitter feeds with ads right in between your tweets!

I haven’t used Facebook in awhile but I do remember last year they went for their IPO and it was a disaster. Their stock plummeted and people were really worry that Facebook may just be a ‘fashion trend’ if you will. Hopefully Twitter doesn’t go through that disaster.

Just some interesting stats I found from a Bloomberg video:
83% of people age 18-29 uses social media.
500M tweets per day.
Unique Twitter visitors in July alone – 167 MILLION people.
Forecast for 2015 – $627M in MOBILE ad revenue

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But if you notice, Twitter has a long way to go in capturing market share. I always thought Twitter was on par with Facebook but the numbers says otherwise. I think people are beginning to trend towards Twitter but perhaps that’s just me and my experience with friends.

Well the good thing about Twitter is that they’ve already began generating mobile ad revenue, whereas Facebook in 2012 during its IPO had zero mobile ad revenue, which really worried investors – especially given how everybody thinks mobile phones are the next generation laptops, desktops, etc; thus making it crucial for investors to that Facebook, Twitter or any social medias begin capitalizing on mobile usage.

Sources:

http://www.bloomberg.com/video/twitter-by-the-numbers-500m-tweets-a-day-hQ46IKLoTzeLh_2cvObKZg.html

http://www.bloomberg.com/video/twitter-most-highly-anticipated-ipo-since-facebook-erBOQLozQtC2xM95f5Y8Tw.html

http://www.insidefacebook.com/2013/08/28/study-facebooks-market-share-in-mobile-ad-revenue-is-growing/


Flamers and trolls and the online world we live in

I’m  going to be frank by asking, are people truly this stupid nowadays? I was playing a game recently – some of you may know Dota 2 – and by making one mistake, I get this person who I don’t even know trash talking me and tells me to kill myself. Really? Is this how people behave on the Internet nowadays? Is it because they are shielded behind their screen and prevented from saying that to my face? Would he behave differently had we meet each other in real life? It’s not only gamers, ‘Youtubers’ or really any online forums, social media, etc., will you find these types of people? People who are ill willed and pull no punches online.

I had a friend recently who told me, ‘you should just ignore them’. Yeah, I guess I can do that; however, it still dumbfounds me till this day that these are real people. These are people, strangers that you and I could potentially meet today or tomorrow. They may be the nicest people when face to face but suddenly they become a different person online. And even aside from the people who bad mouth seemingly out of enjoyment, there are those who speak as if what they say are facts and written in books and publishing. There is little to no humility on the Internet. I really don’t get it. It’s like these people wear some kind of facade where their online ego is tied to. And any time they admit that they’re wrong, it’s as if they would lose their house – something they cannot afford to do.

Unfortunately with all this said, I can’t offer up a solution. It’s just these are events I’ve occur over and over through my many hours online. In fact, now that I think about It, I’m perhaps guilty too (to a lesser extent in my opinion lol – some people just take it to the extreme, which are people this blog is about). I suppose the people found online especially in games or on Youtube are people still in their teens, so it shouldn’t be expected that they have the same level of maturity. However at times, I’ve visited these peoples blogs, profile pages and they are in their 30s and over. So, at the end of the day, I really don’t know. Perhaps it’s best to heed my friend’s advice and stay clear/ignore these types of people. There is after all a block function on Youtube and a mute function on the game Dota 2.