Visual Beauty on Social Media

If you are an organization that relies heavily on visuals and the sort, then I wholeheartedly believe you should have an Instagram page for your organization. Personally, I love Instagram. It’s probably one of my top three favorite social media sites, and on that site, I even follow a few brands and nonprofit accounts that I think use Instagram to their advantage.

In terms of brands, there are a few that come to mind as using Instagram and sites like it to their advantage. A few that come to mind include National Geographic, Saturday Night Live, and HomeGoods.

Some photos from the mentioned Instagram pages (left: HomeGoods, SNL, National Geo)

There are two brands that I think go above and beyond when it comes to Instagram: NoYourCity and Ballet de l Opera de Paris.

First, NoYourCity is an account that shares photos of New York City. The photos are so beautiful! I’m talking professional grade beauty right here. I think this site does a really good job of showing the positive parts of New York. It also does a good job of showing that the images you post on Instagram don’t necessarily need to have a bunch of things happening in them. They can be super simple but still get the point you intended across.

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The other brand that I think does a very good job of using Instagram is Ballet de l Opera de Paris. This one also has images that are more simple in concept, but are still beautiful! I don’t about you, but I can’t fly to Paris at the drop of a hat to take in a ballet, so I appreciate this account because it shares images of the productions they put on. One of the other things I LOVE about their account is they use up the whole ‘three photos a line’ aspect of Instagram. It’s hard to put into words what I mean, so I’ll just show you.

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You see what I mean?

Now, apart from brands that I follow, I did happen to come across a certain nonprofit account that I think does a very good job at using the account. That account belongs to NeverThirst. This account belongs to an organization that… well I’ll let them explain it. “We are called to bring clean water, health and hope to those who lack access to what many of us take for granted every day” This account is very nice because it does a number of things via their photos. The first is that it shows the crisis for clean water by showing what the water looked like before filters were installed.screen-shot-2017-02-07-at-11-44-32-pm

It also posts pictures showing the people who are helped with the clean water, which does a good job of emotionally connecting with the followers. This photo that I found is one of my favorites for that exact reason

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Overall, I think that all the accounts I talked about in this post do a very good job of using Instagram for their advantage. Not every brand that has an account, nor every nonprofit, does a very good job at getting their message across with their account, but these do. Personally, I don’t follow many brands except for the two I said were my favorite, but some of the other ones I listed I might actually follow now because the pictures they post are just so enticing. Honestly, some of these brands have better Instagram accounts that I do… maybe I should have been taking notes.

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Reactions to: “Angels and Ghosts: Anatomy of a Story”

Let me preface this review with this statement: I am not a very emotional person. I rarely cry at movies I watch or books I read (I think the the last movie I cried at was Inside Out  and that was only because my mom was sitting next to me and was sobbing), and while this article didn’t make me openly cry, it did make me feel more than I was expecting it to.

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The issues she is referring to is something that no parents should ever have to deal with, but to many in this world are forced to. Given the emotion of the situation, most journalists would have stayed clear, but not Diana Sugg. She went into the situation head on and, despite getting emotional at times, didn’t shy away from anything, which I really admired. If I were in her shoes, I do not believe I would have been able to handle the situation the way she did; in fact I would probably have spent a majority of the time freaking out about if I was being overly personal with my questions or presence.

The major question this article makes you ask is this: Were they being vultures when they ‘gathered information’ from the family of a dying child? In my opinion, they were not. It wasn’t as though they holding microphones and tape recorders to the parents’s faces as their child was dying in front of them, she was very laid back in a sense where she was only in the room if the parents and the child allowed them and didn’t ask any question she felt was too personal. Apart from the actual ‘interview’ part (I put interview in quotes because in my opinion she did so much more than simply interview the people in her article), even after the child died, Diana stayed in contact with R.J.’s mother in order to tell her about the article, but even more than that. She listened to her, and not just when she was asked questions that Sugg waned to use in her article; Sugg listened to her every single day, no matter the topic matter. Most journalists wouldn’t stay this connected to a ‘source’ after their stories were over, but Diana did, which made me even more emotionally attached to this article than I already was.

Overall, I really enjoyed this article (more than I thought I would initially). Not only was it interesting to read and very easy for me to get through, but it kept me emotionally connected from basically the first word to the last, almost to the point where I didn’t want it to end. I HIGHLY recommend this article to basically anyone, I enjoyed it that much.

Ch-Ch-Ch-Changes!

Nothing stays the same forever. Sooner or later, everything changes in one way or another, even if we don’t like it. Some changes are good: like changing from winter to spring or graduating from one grade to another, while others are not so great. The changes we read about in “Blur” however, which shaped the way we currently see media and communication, are changes that I consider to be very good overall.

The first change that I think transformed communication in any significant way is the creation of written language (obviously). Let me give you one clear example on why this was a big deal back in the day, and still is right now: look at this word. This one right here. Know what that word is? Of course you do, because you know how to read.  If you didn’t know how to read, why would you be on this site in the first place? So the very idea of a written language was a huge accomplishment that was used to make information easier to convey across the world.

The other advancement in communication that I want to touch on is the creation of the radio. When you think of radio now-a-days, you usually think of that box that is found in your car that is responsible for giving you music while you drive. The older generation (like my mother) sometimes listens to talk radio instead of music (in my Dad’s case it’s sports radio instead of NPR but the concept is still the same) which is more of how the radio was initially supposed to be used.

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The radio was invented sometime around the late 1800’s to early 1900’s, no one is really 100% sure on the timeline, but the timeframe doesn’t matter to the point I am trying to make. The initial job of the radio wasn’t used for music, it was used more for the likes of NPR. People used to sit around the radio at night with the whole family, usually after dinner, and listened to the news of the day/week. Ever heard of FDR’s Fireside Chats? No? Essentially it was a group of about 30 radio speeches President Roosevelt gave over the radio for the nation to hear. This was the first major way, besides newspapers, that allowed the whole nation to get connected to the news at the same time. It was like TV news before TV news was actually a thing. It shaped the way that people received their news, and would receive their news for years to come.

In conclusion (wow I feel like I’m writing an essay right now), the advancements made in both communication and media have shaped the way we receive news today. Without the creation of a written language, the way we live in general would be gone completely (can you even imagine a world where there is no written language of any kind?) and without the creation of the radio as a way to receive news, the modern TV news stations would probably not exist in the same manner as they are in now.