Module 12: Future Issues

The one important thing I think I learned from the Digital Media course are a mix of two things: First, is that it was confirmed to me where the world of internet and technology is heading and how fast things are moving in the world of gadgets. From the reading material, videos ,and reading fellow classmates blogs. Second, is learning the history of the making of the internet and the digital media in general. I couldn’t believe how much time and hard work was put into it.

Best part of the course was that I felt that I have an experience to share and relate to every module we learnt. May be that is because I am from the generation Y (GEN Y). I think that generation was the Lab Rat of the digital era. We went from giant desktops to smart phones, tablets and mini laptops. We went from turtle slow dial up where we spent hours trying to get online, waiting for a page to finish loading, game consoles that crash and bad video resolution to HD & LED monitors. Many of us heard the saying “You don’t know how lucky you are” and I think we can now say the same thing to Generation Z.

It’s Valentines day, you have a crush, you whack together a Spotify playlist for them and their heart melts. Do you have any idea how long a mix tape took to make!?

I think things will keep moving fast, new discoveries, ideas and inventions will come up for the web & digital world. Pretty soon I will be reading my email on the inside wall of a drone. A personal drone that will fly me to work on autopilot, that will not require fuel but solar energy, or may be my personal robot will plug it to an electric outlet every now and then to run a diagnostic.

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New Trend:

I decided to create an account with Pinterest. I choose that website because I assumed it was similar to Instagram. I thought that it a website for people to post pictures and for others to comment on it. I logged in to the account via browser not the app, it was very easy to use and navigate. I learned on my own, I still do not master the website and I know there is a lot more to discover. But I really like the idea so far, there are a lot of great and useful inventions that I would like to have for my home. I think it is very valuable because most of the items i saw are things I never seen before. I was surprised to see that many friends of mine are signed up to it, but my favorite moment is when I discovered that my wife has an account as well.

Here are couple of things that I liked/pined, a recipe and an useful kitchen invention.

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Module 11: CyberLaw

I think what Girl Talk does is definitely art, but he should somehow recognize anything that he is using from other sources. And the same goes for people like him that are doing the same thing. I think real artists respect art but at the same time you must give credit to originality. I think Girl Talk has not been sued yet because he will have a strong fair use defense for any case. The music industry is scared to sue him because they are afraid that the courts will return fair use back to music.

One of the most important legal considerations associated with our digital environment is copy right law. I think it is important to stop internet piracy and to make sure artists are getting rewarded for their hard work. In the past (early 2000’s) when Napster came out, it was the next new thing to download music and movies you liked. I remember sitting at work downloading every song that I ever listened to & liked. Then all of a sudden Napster was shut down and I remember everyone that I knew was very upset and annoyed. We all felt that something precious was stripped away and we did not realize that what we were doing was illegal or not right. But later on we understood. I remember after Napster many more peer to peer file sharing programs came out.

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I am very surprised that still many years after the Napster scandal some people out there are still trying to get music and movies illegally. Should we blame the consumer? or should we blame the companies that still allow piracy to exist. Pirate bay Trial

I think that is one of the reasons why some countries are using this as an angle to control the internet like in China & the middle east. Some of these countries control the bandwidth as well as the content. They don’t believe in net neutrality.

But the strategies China uses to control cyberspace, including its digital barricades against Google, Facebook, YouTube and thousands of other websites, and its never-ending arrests of scholars and dissidents who post government critiques online, actually constitute one of the greatest attacks on internet freedom the world has ever seen, said William Nee, China researcher at Amnesty International.

Did you know that Americans pay a lot more for internet than many other countries? … Why?

“Americans pay so much because they don’t have a choice,” says Susan Crawford, a former special assistant to President Barack Obama on science, technology and innovation policy.
Although there are several national companies, local markets tend to be dominated by just one or two main providers.

On the other hand I think we are better off than many other countries when it comes to net neutrality. Many countries are still struggling with that subject.

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Module 10: Business Models/Branding

From just reading the title of the new module I realized right away that it will be about business reviews and recommendations. These things now can make or break a business. Reading the “Long Tail” by Chris Anderson it is easy to grasp that point of the article from the first paragraph, which is about how a book became successful because of the new technology of referring and recommendations of similar books for the consumer on Amazon.com.

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It was great to learn about the free concept, how one product can seem free at first but you will end up spending money on other items related to the same product. Like if a store is advertising for a sale at one department but the goal is just to bring you in to look at other department that needs to go.

Here is a video about how business can benefit from negative reviews and turn the table around.

These concepts changed our understanding of some business models like scale & approach. In the past young kids used to always request to go out with their friends and play outside, but now it is the opposite. Kids want to stay in to play with their handheld devices and game consoles.  How do they change our understanding of business models in terms of approach, marketing and scale?

Bad reviews are an inevitable fact of life, like death, taxes, and fruit-flavored beer. No matter how scrupulous you are when conducting your business, you’re going to eventually run into a disgruntled customer who takes to the internet to air his grievances. (How Bad Reviews Can Benefit Your Business)

The internet is transforming the business, now online reviews are  probably the first thing the consumer checks before visiting or using that business. People are relying on the online word of mouth, which is the strongest form of advertisement. I predict that things are going to change in the future when it comes to media and entrepreneurship. I think we are going to see a major change in the management and communications department of every business, that will have an important task to search the web to dispute and remove any negative reviews about the business.

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Module 9: Mobile & Big Data

I never thought that one day I will get to put my app idea on paper, but I had one in mind for a few years now that I don’t know where to go and where to start with it. There are similar apps to it but none share the same functionality.

My app is called “Ice Breaker”, The point of this app is to help people locate other people for different purposes and needs: dating, tutoring, handy work, life coaching, advice, …etc. By allowing people to create a personal/professional profile where they can put a picture and list things & skills they can help other people with or list something they need. But by using your location on a map. And people can rate if you were helpful so future users can determine if they like to do business with you or not. At the same time the app can be used for social dating. A user can choose whether they want to post their availability for dating or for tutoring or for performing a specific work like gardening.

It can be considered a mix of craigslist, yelp, LinkedIn, match.com,..etc, All these website serve the same purpose which is fulfilling a need. but all in one network and by using your location via GPS to determine who is available in a certain area.

The risk is to use a service or someone that was not previously rated on the app, which means the more you do good the more positive rating you will have. Of course that will not work in the area of dating.

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Module 8: Online Journalism

One of the best pieces of advice I ever received was from an economics teacher when I was going for my undergrad degree. Which was to make it a habit of listening to a news TV channel or radio channel every day in the morning while getting ready to go to work and/or while driving to work. This way I can stay in touch with the world and be aware of what is going on in every field and location. Some times I forget to do that so I end up browsing my favorite news website while on a break at work or lunch break.

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The best thing about news websites is that they have a Search feature where you can search the entire website for a specific subject that interests me.

I like this video below by Big Think, it talks about the innovation of the human behavior from a journalism and community interaction angle.

I like news posts that contains videos and pictures. I am a visual type person, I prefer watching a video or seeing pictures rather than reading lots of text. That is the innovation in journalism, successful news websites are the ones that can post news articles in different ways in order to satisfy all types of people.

In surveys conducted by the Pew Project for Excellence in Journalism, 34% of respondents said they read news online within the past 24 hours (as opposed to 31% who favored newspapers); and a full 41% said they get most of their news online, 10% more than those who said they got most of their news from a newspaper.Source

Decline in Newspaper sales News article shows that news paper sales are declining by 9% per year. Lets look at the bright side, eventually with the decline in the printing industries we will be able to save more and more trees.

Module 7: Cyber Culture Research

Ever wondered if people use the internet the same way you do? I thought about this many times before, that is why every now and then i take a look at the Wikipedia Page that shows the top visited websites up to a couple of months ago. You will realize how different people are and that there may be some websites on the top of that list that you never visited and never knew it existed.

The cyber world changes as time goes by, the internet usage now is not the same compared to 5, 10, 15 and 20 years ago. Which led me to think that the type of people that work in the field of technology, computers and internet changed as well. But I was wrong according to this report by Fortune it seems that there is still discrimination and a gender gap in most of the major tech giants like Apple, Microsoft, Google, …etc. Even though they all announced publicly that they realize the problem and are working on fixing it. As we can see in this Fortune report about Apple.

The gender wage gap, unlike the racial wage gap, is mainly related to choices that women make between home and the workplace. Working women typically have had as much education as male workers. In fact, in recent years women have been acquiring more years of education than men, particularly at the post graduate level, and that education gives them greater access to relatively high-paying occupations.

Race & Gender Wage Gaps

Race & Gender Wage Gaps

The gender gap also exists in poor underdeveloped countries where things are even more difficult for women because the country’s culture and government still favoring a male dominant system.

According to this study by Junior Achievement USA and The Allstate Foundation’s Teens & Personal Finance Survey reveals a gender gap among teenagers’ views and habits on college plans and future earning power. The survey found that 91 percent of teen girls, ages 13-18, plan to attend college or trade school after they graduate from high school, compared to 86 percent of their male counterparts.

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