You Are What You Type

If you are reading this but don’t have a social media account of any description you are part of a very, very, small minority. Social media gives people the opportunity to connect, communicate and share their lives with friends and family or meet and get to know new people and has changed almost everyone’s everyday lives due to the extent we use (and in some cases depend) on it.

On these different sites people build up their own online personality referred to as a online persona. This online persona is the image people get of you from the information you put up about yourself online including what you look like, what kind of person you are, etc.. Most people take this pretty seriously because you are either communicating with friends or want your persona to be recognisable for new friends to find you. Of course there are times when people will change minor details here and there that don’t reflect accurately on you (like for example how on my Facebook it says I work as a model at Chelsea Football Club) but usually the bulk and most important parts of the online persona are true.

This being said there are also plenty of people who use the opportunity to create somebody entirely new on these platforms. Although sometimes these people just create an entirely different online persona just for the ‘fun of it’ or ‘because they can’ there are also many cases were people creates this personas to trick and fool people.

Here is a short video I made in about 10 minutes showing just how easy it is to become somebody entirely new on the internet:


English Remix Master

Remix Culture, refers to a culture that encourages the creation of new work by combining and editing existing work. Remix culture is usually associated with the music industry due to the absolutely stunning number of remixes that can be found all over the internet on just about any song written in the past 5 years. Although remix culture extends a long way beyond just remixing a new song, remix culture also covers anything, in any format, that has been remixed. This can include things like art, TV, youtube videos and in my opinion even the essays you had to write in school.

Every essay you wrote would always have a certain topic, and would be expected to have at least a certain level of fact/information in it that you would find from a number of different sources (ie books, websites, documentaries, interviews), but isn’t this mashup of other peoples work with slight changes of your own sound very similar to a remix of a song? Haven’t you essentially just created a remix piece of work on the topic of the essay? This idea that anything can be remixed is, at least in my opinion, the most interesting part of remix culture and it is important that to fully understand remix you need to consider all the possibilities that it entails.

Here is a quick remix of my own of some of the quotes from my uni lecturer (Note – Everything except for the really obvious cricket sounds comes from during different lectures):

Tomato Vs Barbecue Source!?

Closed source is used to describe an operating system or software where the company responsible for its creation implements constraints on what the users can do with the software and highly limits, or completely denies access to the code. One well known example of a closed source operating system is the one you find in your iPhone. Apple doesn’t want people to be able to edit or change the way that their products functions and especially don’t want you to see how their code work. This allows Apple to have control over the way you buy products, for example if you have an iPhone or iPod and you want music on them, you needed to get it from iTunes, and although this is not so much the case anymore there are still plenty of other examples of the ways Apple are always making you buy more things from them in order to make their products work.


Although many people dump on closed source as being such a bad thing, and many people on the internet talk about the lack of freedom allowed when using closed source, is it really such a big issue? There are also many benefits to closed source, take these four reasons for example as to why closed source, really isn’t all that bad in many regards:

  1. You aren’t responsible to fix components if something goes wrong
  2. You don’t have to worry about open source compliancy issues and licensing terms
  3. You don’t have to search around for technical support
  4. You don’t have to worry about contributing your changes back to the community (simply because you can’t make any).

Of course, everything on this list assumes you play around with, and edit your open source phone or software because if you don’t, what is the point of having it? Because there is no way you can argue that, for example, and Android phones OS is more aesthetically pleasing and easier to use than Apples.

Now I understand that a lot of people reading this (that was a joke by the way) will be thinking right about now “But Tate, it just sounds like closed source is for people who are too lazy to edit, customise and therefore personalise their phone?” and I would say exactly, and that is why it is perfect for someone like me.

Even with all of this said though I am still using WordPress which is open source. But shhhhhh…

<Insert witty comment about reference list here> Reference List:

Coca-Cola – The Movie…

Transmedia storytelling is a term used to describe the technique of telling a story over multiple mediums/platforms using various (current) digital technologies.

Coca-Cola released an advertisement in 2006 which focused on what life is like inside of a vending machine, this short animated ad was a major success for the company so the marketing team decided to take this to the next level and a year later were releasing a short three and a half minute film about how these characters from the ad react when the Coke runs out. The movie was given a release similar to those of Hollywood films and multiple trailers were released for it.


Two years down the track (we are in 2009 now) Coca-Cola took this now well know ad campaign to another level by releasing a new ad in the series that showed the refreshing nature of Coca-Cola, but more notably, at the same time, a new partnership with Xbox. This partnership included a giveaway of 3 million loyalty points, guides for games in the form of videos and a custom skin for the home screen of the Xbox based around the happiness ad campaign.

There have been many more recent instalments to this ad campaign but it is the results of this use of transmedia storytelling in marketing/advertising that is shocking, of course you expect something on such a large scale to do well. In 2008 alone the company managed a 3.6% boost in retail sales, and although this doesn’t sound like much the economy was especially ‘gloomy’ at the time.


Reference List (AKA what Wikipedia pages I visited):


Youtube Copyright, Origins of Copyright Law and The Creative Commons

Youtube has pretty strict copyright rules and it isn’t unusual, especially with music, to be watching a video one day and upon trying to reload the page an hour later, finding that it has been removed.

YouTube’s copyright system, although necessary, has come under scrutiny from many YouTubers due to the unfair nature of how some claims but more often than not appeals are dealt with under the current copyright strike system. Whether these reports of poor handling of copyright claims within YouTube hold any real substance or not is hard to tell simply because you only hear the people’s outside of YouTube side to the story, but it seems unlikely that so many people could complain about a system that ‘works effectively’ if there was nothing wrong with it. Some of these complaints have included things like, having requests ignored to remove copied content if the person who took it is a big figure in the YouTube community (and having appeals to have videos put back up ignored for the same reason) and how there have been many instances of YouTube removing videos when there was no actual proof of a copyright infringement.

Copyright Law was originally a British concept made public in 1710 and at the time only applied to the copying of books. But before this there was no such thing as copyright, it simply didn’t exist. Because of this, many authors like writers, composers, etc. where able to use and copy bits and pieces of others works to help improve their own, of course there was an unspoken agreement of sorts that stopped people from completely stealing somebody else’s work and claiming it as their own, but just to be sure many authors would hide their work and keep it under lock and key until they released it themselves to ensure that nobody else could take the credit for their work.

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When copyright law was introduced authors were required to ask if they wanted to have their work copyrighted because by default everything was public, but today it is the complete opposite, people are required to ask for their work to have the copyright removed. Content that has the copyright removed can commonly (you will see what I did there in a second) be found in the Creative Commons, this removes a lot of the restrictions surrounding how other people can use and share the content that copyright laws provide and instead allows creators to select one of six different licences that affects how people can share and use their work.


“Reference” List:

(Note: Everything I read has an in-text link/Everything up there is the same as everything down here) – Copyright on YouTube’s Home Page – Good old Wikipedia’s History of Copyright Law Page – Creative Commons Australia Website

Citizen Journalism

The rise of citizen journalism is considered by many as one of the greatest things to happen to journalism. It provides new ideas and individuals opinions on a range of different topics and anyone with a smartphone or access to the internet on any device can contribute.

Some amazing sites and public figures have emerged through citizen journalism reporting on a variety of issues, but citizen journalism goes beyond just these major groups, since anyone can share content by taking a picture on their smartphone it creates a much larger quantity of content available to consumers and allows people to see multiple points of reference on a single story.

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Of course with anything that is free and open to anybody who wishes to contribute many situations arise where quality and even accuracy of information can be effected. This can either refer to completely incorrect, incomplete or out of context information which can either be provided intentionally to change how people think or can be a simple misunderstanding on behalf of the author. The other major issue is how bias or opinions can effect the integrity of an article.


Origins of 4chan and the World of Internet Memes

The website 4chan (enter at own risk) was launched on the 1st of October 2003 by Christopher Moot, who was only 15 years of age at the time. The website was modelled after the Japanese site 2chan and was meant to be a image board for people to talk about Japanese anime and manga. The first image board created on 4chan /b/ (random), quickly grew in popularity to the extent where before the end of its first month it had experienced its first crash from high server traffic.

Since 4chan began operating the users of the different boards have achieved numerous things, many of which are mischievous or unquestionably wrong. Because of this extremely twisted nature not only of the website itself, but also the mindsets of many of the people using it a lot of the content on the boards is extremely inappropriate in a variety of different ways. Whether it be large amounts of pornographic content or humour that is easy to laugh at until you actually consider the implications of what is being said. Take for example the below image which I found simply by typing ‘4chan /b/’ into google images.


Even though there is plenty of this ‘aggressive’ content there is also a lot of funny content that comes from 4chan and albeit mostly inappropriate it is still the kind of stuff you would show to your friends as a joke. Along side this there are countless memes that people use or refer to all the time today that were created and originally posted on 4chan. In most cases these memes that are made on 4chan will be picked up by reddit users which then distribute these memes to a wider audience letting them spread like wild fire. A couple of examples of these well known memes that originally came from 4chan include Pepe the frog and the you mad bro? face.


4chan is a ‘rough’ place on the internet were all kinds of characters gather together to talk and post about anything they want, because of this you can find countless inappropriate threads on the different boards but at the same time this freedom allows for the creation of some of the funniest memes and sayings that, at the very least youth, use today. I end this long post with a variation on one of my favourite memes from 4chan, hope you like it.


References (Not really a reference list but these are the websites I looked at):