Social Media. Where will it lead us next?

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Today’s world is ever-changing and endlessly advancing in both the technological and professional aspects. The improved use of mass media and social media has changed the standard interview, recruit and career paths as we know them. As a member of Generation Y, I am stereotyped to thrive for and be a fan of technological advancements. Personally, it’s a bit of a different story. I appreciate the amount of technology and what it allows us to do in today’s world. However, I do believe it has reached too far in certain places, making it unnecessary for basic human interaction for the upcoming generations. Saying this, I mean the children of today’s world no longer find it necessary to show enough respect, hold face-to-face conversations, make phone calls or make literal visits to locations. Instead, they treat all their peers, regardless of age the same, choose a text or multimedia message to contact anyone and accomplish tasks via internet technology instead of making an effort to reach out. The YouTube videos got my fired up about this rant, yet also opened my eyes to the bigger picture, my future.

As a mass media, public relations – marketing student, I see a bright future ahead of me. I realize I must make a continued effort to keep pace with the advancing mass and social media world that surrounds me. As the video mentioned, the U.S. Department of Labor estimates that today’s learners will have 10-14 jobs by the time they are 38 years of age. This is neat and gives an optimistic scope to look through. I like change and look forward to experiencing various professional experiences throughout my career.

The statistic in the social media clip definitely surprised me. Fifty percent of the world’s population is under age 30. To me this means it is my peers and I who hold the power to the social and professional future. The Facebook statistics are downright crazy. It is a neat social media site created for both personal and professional use. Some use it. Others abuse it. If people continually share EVERYTHING with outsiders, what will out “personal” lives be like in 20 years? Being introduced to GooglePlus is class was invigorating. It has a much more organized setup, logical settings and provides great professional advantages.

Technology and social media are taking over. Our great-grandparents didn’t know what a cell phone was. Our grandparents can’t wrap their minds around social media sites. Our parents choose face-to-face interaction. Generation Y views a text message acceptable in all conditions. This trend includes tons of technological advancements, yet has a negative connotation when it comes to societal norms. My peers and I hold the power to turn this around, combining technology with more positive uses. My mom always said: “Life is a crazy ride. Hold on tight.” Yet, I always remember her number one motto: “If you can dream it, you can achieve it”.

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Local restaurants lose alcohol privileges

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Four restaurants added in September.

Numerous area restaurants have appeared on the list of tax delinquencies. With a presence on the list, restaurants are not able to legally buy alcohol from distributors, off-sale locations or other bars.

As of September, area restaurants on the list include:

  • Charley’s (Mankato)
  • China Buffet (Mankato)
  • The Boat Landing (Madison Lake)
  • George’s Fine Steaks & Spirits (New Ulm)
  • Jerry Dutler’s Bowl (Mankato)
  • Hammer’s Bar (New Ulm)
  • Cedar’s Grille (St. Peter)

This list acts as a warning to distributors and public safety officials, both able to investigate illegal sales of alcohol. “It doesn’t put them out of business. If they’ve got liquor in the back, they can continue to sell what they have available,” said Robyn Dwyer, director of the collection division, Minnesota Department of Revenue.

Twitter, Tweets, Re-tweets, Mentions..I prefer Birds

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As the title explains, Twitter intimidates me. It scares me that a six-year-old can explain a better definition of “tweet” than I can. The six-year-old would most likely refer tweet to Twitter. The first thing that comes to my mind? A bird. I have been working hard at familiarizing myself with Twitter and have definitely learned a lot along the way. I keep telling myself, just like anything else in life “practice makes perfect”. Last class period I learned you can hashback any word or phrase you would like (very interesting)! I thought hashbacks had to refer to a group or already be developed in order to hashback (referring things to the Facebook world).

My Twitter assignment for MASS 330:

Prior to Writing for Online Multimedia, I had an existing Twitter account, yet had only tweeted three times total in the span of a year. Since updating my account for this class and better familiarizing myself with Twitter, I have learned a lot and am beginning to enjoy the Twitter world. I had always thought it was a knock-off on Facebook until I learned the business and professional advantages Twitter has to offer. I can use my Twitter account as a professional profile, positively portraying myself to the professional Public Relations and Marketing network. My favorite feature of Twitter is that I can follow PR agencies, Marketing firms, renown news sources, distinguished professional in the area and nationwide, etc. I am also fond of the fact that employers can follow me and I may be flagged as a prospect for a job opening or internship by them. By following my classmates and having the MASS330 hashback, I am continually advancing my Twitter skills and enjoying the process in the meantime!

Time to get back to “tweeting” my life away!

ABC News

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News is a constant, unavoidable source surrounding us. News should be reliable, true material provided to inform citizens of both good and bad happenings. In today’s world of technological advancement, it is extremely crucial for media providers to guarantee fair, accurate, relevant news to the correct audience at the best time and place.

My news source of choice is ABCnews.com. ABC does a great job of sharing recent news in an organizational pattern that is simple for citizens to view. At the ABC News homepage, the viewer’s attention is focused on the featured story of the day, appearing larger than all other stories. If the viewer isn’t necessarily interested in the feature story, specific stories/topics can be searched for at the top of the site or the viewer can select from fifteen other topic tabs. Personally, my favorite part of the site is the hot topic suggestions and “Must Read” tab options. The site has a perfect balance of stories, pictures, slideshows, videos, polls and tweets. Another neat feature is the “Change Location” option located towards the bottom of the homepage. This tool, called ABC News Local allows viewers to seek local news happenings right in their area.

When evaluating online multimedia news sites, it is important to consider a variety of traits. These five basic traits include fairness, attribution, accuracy, relevance and newness. ABCnews.com has a fair, unbiased feel. All articles are written with basic headlines, always providing fact rather than opinion. Headlines are followed by efficient summary text written in the inverted pyramid style. When discussing fairness it is important that the source approaches all sides of an issue, rather than just choosing one. With the 9/11 anniversary quickly approaching, ABC News is currently featuring various 9/11 pieces, covering all sides of the story. Attribution is similar to fairness, yet focuses more on citing where certain facts, photos and videos come from. ABC News does an acceptable job with attribution. For example, in the feature story about the aftermath of Hurricane Irene, the photo on the homepage states that it is from the Associated Press.

Accuracy is self-explanatory, simply meaning that the facts reported need to be right. A news source immediately becomes untrustworthy if an important fact in a story is stated incorrectly. For example, as mentioned in the book, if a story informs viewers of a fire that occurred and stated the incorrect date, the source will no longer be viewed as accurate or credible. According to some, relevance may be the weakest point of ABCnews.com simply because of the vast variety of information it provides. Relevant material should mean something and be of importance to the audience. I believe relevance can vary from viewer to viewer, depending on their point of greatest interest. For example, on today’s homepage of ABCnews.com, I first clicked on the Katy Perry picture from last night’s VMAs. To me, this provided relevance, yet many other viewers visiting the site may see that as irrelevant and would choose to click on the Hurricane Irene story.

Newness is of utter importance when it comes to reliable online news sites. Viewers aren’t interested in old news that journalists try to bring to public attention for the second time. Newness literally means news that has not been given before. This doesn’t mean that reporting on the 9/11 tragedy is not new. As long as journalists are providing fresh, new views on important events of the past, viewers will appreciate it and show continued interest.

After carefully evaluating ABCnews.com, I will definitely continue to visit the site as my number one news choice. I like the setup, navigational settings and believe it provides the perfect amount of audience control, including information for viewers of all types.  The only suggestion I would make for the site would be to make social media connections more prominent to viewers. By adding bigger, more obvious Facebook and Twitter options, viewers are more apt to get involved and share news with others!