Tweeting Your Feelings

November 21, 2009

When Courtney Love becomes a headliner for a section in CNN, many of us being to wonder where journalism is going these days; however this article asks a pretty interesting and valid question. Can the law keep up with technology?

Taking her frustration out on Twitter, Courtney Love has been accused of posting derogatory and false comments about a clothing designer after arguing over the prices of some items. Due to her tweets, she is now being sued for libel.

This story doesn’t sound too unfamiliar to us. Consider the situation between Amanda Bonnen and her landlord when she tweeted about mold in her apartment. Once the reality company found out what was said, they sued her for libel and seeked $50,000 in damages.

Although social media networks aren’t considered the most credible sources sometimes, it is definitely showing signs of impact on other’s reputation. With this in mind, I believe laws might begin to form for these types of sites eventually, especially since there have been several issues with the networking sites already.

This made me wonder: would the creation of a social media law infringe too much on our freedom of speech?


Participatory News

October 2, 2009

How credible are your social media sources? When I first began working for my school newspapers and learning about journalism, it was emphasized to get good and prominent people as quoted sources for your story. Their input was considered more credible or reliable, and had more of an impact or held more support in comparison to what some average Joe could have stated.

Nowadays, although there are still journalistic standards as to which sources to quote, more and more average citizens are participating in reporting the news or acting as a source. For example, Ellyn Angelotti of Poynter Institute said that there have been many changes in the old news communication model to the more interactive one. This was seen when the first picture of the Hudson place crash was not one that originated from a reporter, but from an iPhone belonging to a personal trainer who was visiting New York at the time. This photograph and its story were sent around Twitter before it was published through a news organization.

This idea of participatory news has increased throughout the years as technology has advanced. Information is being gathered from news sites, experiences, social networking sites, and even blogs. So how do you know that it’s credible and that you can use their information in your story? The time old answer and only way is to check and recheck your facts.

Living a Transparent Lifestyle

September 28, 2009

There are moments in our lives when we regret not capturing an event or phrase with a camera or on video. The blurred memory will suffice, but it would have been nice to be able to remember it with complete clarity. Ever feel like that? Many people, especially parents, wish they were prepared at that moment instead of being just a few seconds late to record it.

The future of social networks, virtual reality and various technological innovations may be creating a gadget that has the capability of storing every memory you have.   Scary huh?

The SenseCam idea, a type of device whose purpose is to act as a life recorder, is not too far off.  Microsoft has recently developed this digital item that a person would wear around their neck. The invention has several electronic sensors and would act as your personal photographer each and every day. The SenseCam would also record and transcribe every conversation the owner has while wearing the device.  The wearer also has control over the timing of when the photographs are taken. It could be set to take photos every 30 seconds to every couple of minutes.

This product is a working progress. Eventually the company would like to include a GPS system into the device so that you know where and when the picture is taken or the conversation was recorded. It is also a bit clunky and will evolve, at some point, into a smaller and sleeker piece that might even be wearable as a wristwatch.

Although this invention seems wonderful for those that would like to review every single minute of their child’s or their own lives, it does bring about the issue of security or privacy.  Your entire identity is within that small digital box. If you ever lost it or someone else got a hold of it…what would the ramifications be?

Or more importantly, (with the information that is divulged on Facebook and other social networks) are we adopting a more transparent lifestyle?