Central Perk’s F.R.I.E.N.D.S Review

Hello there!

Last year, in one of my very first subjects, we were asked to create a digital artefact. This would be something created by me, that was online, and could be seen by the general public.

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So, Tell Us More About The Time You…

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A repeated theme in just about every blog I’ve written is how technology, whether we like it or not, is continuing to evolve. As such, we too as a society has to evolve with it. A clear example of this is the emergence of social media, the most popular obviously being Facebook and Twitter. With 310 million users on Twitter and an amazing 1.65 billion users on Facebook, for a lot of people, every aspect of their lives is willingly available online.

In this modern age, it is thought that 90% of of employers will do a simple google search of a possible future employees name. With so much of our lives online, online personas and digital footprints are easily available to be found. For me, I’ve only just started using Twitter this year, primarily to live tweet in lectures I should really be paying more attention to. Even though I don’t tweet often, and I barely post on Facebook, I’ve already begun creating an online persona for myself. For others, their entire life is online, including questionable photos, videos tweets and statuses.

A recent study has stated that up to 70% of employers who have used LinkedIn say they’ve chosen not to hire a person based on what they’ve found out about them online. Our online personas continue to grow day by day, and as such, we need to be careful as to what we put willingly onto the internet. Due to convergence, everything we need to create an online persona (whether that is on Twitter or Facebook) is available on a smartphone. While this is of course convenient, it obviously causes problems. While you may think it may be harmless to tweet a video of yourself doing something that can only be described as stupid, a future employee may not think the same way you do. Being able to manage the online identity you have created is absolutely vital in this current society.

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Got a Smart Phone? You’re a Citizen Journalist!

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Convergence continues to change the way individuals live their lives. In this current age, the term ‘journalist’ has very much evolved from what is once used to be. In the past, the only source of news that held any source of accountability was a considered, observational documentary broadcast on a traditional television channel. However It is safe to say that in this digital age, it is increasingly hard to judge the value of amateur eyewitness film shot on a mobile phone and posted on the internet.

The idea behind citizen journalism is that any individual, no matter the training they may have, can use the tools of modern technology and the global distribution of the Internet to create, augment or fact-check media on their own or in collaboration with others. The use of blogs and commentary online has allowed citizen journalism to appeal to a wide range of people online, and to continue to grow in popularity.

Of course, there is controversy behind this new concept, as is the norm in our modern world. Many professional journalists believe that only a trained journalist can understand the ethics and rigours involved in reporting the news.

However, Josh Stearns has said that, “There’s nothing quite like live video to put people in the moment when it comes to breaking news.” This quote effectively sums up one of the major advantages of citizen journalism, which is that unlike the news, which has a natural delay on events, citizen journalists are able to report live, on the spot, with many different angles. We, as a society, has evolved to the point where just about anyone with a smart phone, with access to the internet, can in a way, become a journalist.

Supermarket Disco

https://soundcloud.com/user-716313266/supermarket-music/s-xXp8w

 

I’m sure a lot of people go into supermarkets, and really enjoy the music being played as they shop. Whether that is current hits, a possible ‘Flashback Thursday’ or ‘Disco Friday’, every supermarket will have a constant loop of songs ready to be played day by day. The people who enjoy these songs probably don’t work at a supermarket, and thus have to listen to the same songs over and over again. I can now recite every word of ‘Shake it Off’, thanks to the radio at my job.

However, while I may complain about these songs, they actually do serve a purpose. A paper written by Nicolas Guéguen, Céline Jacob, Marcel Lourel and Hélène Le Guellec has put forward the idea that the music being played will have an affect on the shoppers, in a number of different ways. Fast tempo songs cause the shoppers to move faster, while classical music will cause the shoppers to take their time, and possibly deter younger shoppers.

This type of music sampling is in affect every single day, and for the most part, it goes unnoticed. There is not a day that goes by (except possibly public holidays) where individuals will not be subjected to this, and it goes to show that music actually does have a powerful effect on so many different individuals. Listen to the above podcast to hear more about this.

Disclaimer: I apologise to anyone who heard the first version of the podcast. The quality was not great at all. I’ve since replaced it. Sorry for any inconvenience.

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Anotated Bibliography

1: http://friends.wikia.com/wiki/Friends_Wiki

The Friends Wiki is a complete encyclopaedia for everything to do with the show ‘Friends’. As I have been reviewing episodes of the sitcom, this site has proved to be very helpful, due to the the great range of information is holds about each episode from every season. This includes the plotlines, episode information, trivia and memorable quotes, which has assisted me in creating a thorough review of each episode so far. While the fact that the site is a wiki format, meaning anyone can edit, allows for a great amount of information to be present, there is the issue of reliability, with pieces of information possibly being incorrect. However, I have found most information to reliable, with this site proving to be very effective.

2: http://journalism.about.com/od/writing/a/reviews.htm

Writing any sort of review is something I haven’t had much experience in. This article has given me an overview of what goes into creating a great review, including the steps that should be avoided. As I am reviewing episodes of ‘Friends’, knowing how to actually create a proper review, one that will grab the attention of an audience, is a crucial step. The article did put forward some very important and interesting point. Also, coming from a site based around journalism, there is a great great sense of reliability on the points being put forward. However, I did find some points quite vague, as well the article not covering a great range of aspects.

3: http://mentalfloss.com/article/56565/25-things-you-might-not-know-about-friends

An aspect of my episode reviews is putting forward different facts, something that people may not know, or will find to be interesting. As someone who has watched the series a number of times, this article presented 25 different facts about aspects of the show, some that not even I knew of. Under each of the ’25 things you may not know’, there are either directed quotes by the individuals involved, or hyperlinks to other sources that back up the points that are being made, proving that they are simply not being made up. The article has proven to be very effective in aiding with the ‘interesting facts’ portion of my review.

4: http://www.friends-tv.org/faq.html

 The ‘original’ Friends site, created when the show first aired in 1994, is primarily an information site, with it covering every single episode of the Friends series. The episode guides are especially helpful for my artefact, with it providing another credible source of episode information. The guide of each episode provides a vast range of quotes from the episode, which I often include in reviews, and it is something which other sites are not as thorough with. The frequently asked questions section also contain some valuable pieces of information. The site does put forward a great amount of information, with direct quotes from both the episodes and series producers and writers being very useful.

5: http://www.vulture.com/2014/09/friends-1994-critics-review-roundup.html#

A really interesting article about the way in which Friends was seen and thought about when the show first aired in 1994. I have already planned to do an entire individual post on the impact that the show has had on pop culture from when it first premiered up until current times. This article presents a different side to the argument, with it showcasing the fact that many of the critics had very negative viewpoints in the early days of the show. The article provides a very unique view, and it allows my reviews of the episodes to have a possible insight from the year that it first appeared on television.

6: http://www.successfulblogging.com/blog-post-editing-5-steps-to-take-before-you-hit-publish/

 Having to write a great number of blog posts for my digital artefact, making sure that each are edited to a professional standard is highly important. The page puts forward some really insightful and crucial steps needed to have a blog post that is edited to the greatest degree, with the 5 steps are very well written and easy to understand. Reading gave me a further insight into best possible way to edit, allowing me to improve, especially as I continue to write more blogs, and I get more practice with it. The source was very effective, providing a necessary framework for my artefact.

7: http://www.friendstranscripts.tk/

As I am attempting to review as many Friends episodes as possible, having the transcripts for each episode can be very useful. After watching the episode, I am able to look over the transcript while I am writing each part of the review. Finding the snippet of conversations that occurred, to highlight as the ‘memorable moment’ or Chandler’s joke of the episode is made far easier having the transcript next to me as I blog about the episode. The site is easy to navigate, with it being very simple in design. The transcripts also highlight the aspects of the episode that are only able by watching the extended episodes, which is what I am watching throughout my artefact. As a result, I can differentiate the aspects of the episode that not all viewers may have seen.

8: http://www.wordstream.com/blog/ws/2015/02/09/how-to-write-a-blog-post

Another information post about what goes into making a really informative and interesting blog post. This site is directed at general blog posts, and not going into specifics about the different areas that the posts may go into. The kind of information that is presented is easy to understand, and the tips given were and will continued to be used to assist me while I continue to blog about each episode of Friends. The language is not highly academic, but it does use language which is easy to understand, and also easy to follow. A recommended source when beginning the process of writing a blog.

9: http://www.thetvcritic.org/reviews/comedies/friends/

Another site which has reviewed episodes of Friends, it was really interesting to see how my perspectives have been different to others doing the same review. Like me, this reviewing site also chose a ‘Friend of the episode’, only it is called the ‘best friend’. It was interesting to see though that my opinions were not similar to theirs, showing that no two people will view a show in the exact same way. The reviews on this site were much smaller than mine, but had a far more accessible layout to find each episode, something which I know I need to improve.

10: http://friendstvshow.net/

 A really thorough and in-depth page about everything to do with Friends. The site has everything needed to review any episode of the show, including episode guides, interesting facts and ‘stuff’ that you may have missed. The gallery, which is full of episode still and screen captures will become very useful, now that I have decided to add more multimedia to my reviews, which will them far more inviting to any viewer. The site is really well laid out, and very easy to navigate around, with seemingly a lot of time being put into the entire webpage. It is a great example of a user friendly page about the show Friends, and it is an example of what I would want my artefact to be.

Marvel Universe = Effective Transmedia Storytelling?

 

 

Even if you’ve been living under a rock for the last number of years, it is safe to say that you’ve experienced an aspect of the Marvel Universe. Whether it in the form of comic books, movie, game or on television, the MCU continues to create access points for fans of all ages. Transmedia storytelling is the technique of telling a story across media, with a degree of media participation, something in which the Marvel Universe, for the most part, excelled greatly at.

However, when it comes to its storytelling on television, and more specifically, the ABC Network, which is home for ‘Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D’ and ‘Agent Carter’, has not reached up to its full potential. The magic that is created in films like The Avengers and Captain America: Winter Soldier is simply not seen on the small screen. As someone who enjoys both show, even I can say that without the Marvel tagline attached to the name, and the often brief cameos by minor characters from the often successful movies, there are very little allusions to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. This is in no way saying that these shows are not worth watching, with both in my opinion being criminally underrated in relation to other shows like ‘Arrow’ and ‘The Flash’. However, transmedia storytelling works best when each access point is used to its greatest potential, and it is an aspect Marvel has room to improve in.

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Digital Craft

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In our most recent BCM112 lecture, we looked over the concept of digital craft. Basically, digital craft allows any individual, anywhere in the world to create and post content on a public platform. For some, this is a very new and possibly frightening idea, for others, it is a new source of income. Whether it is online streaming of games like Call of Duty or creating daily content and vlogs for Youtube, individuals have found a brilliant way to capitalise on this concept of digital craft, allowing them to live their life online, and gain a very steady income out of it. There are people in Korea who are becoming online stars, by simply eating, and live streaming it to the world. It’s called Mukbang, and there are some who are earning a monthly average of $9,400. By doing nothing but eat… one day I hope to become a star by doing nothing but eating…

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The point I’m getting at is that slowly but surely, the content created online is continuing to grow in popularity, and it again raises the question, will platforms such as Youtube, ever replace TV? Is the traditional media industry truly dying? Will more and more people be listing their dream jobs as ‘Youtuber’, instead of the traditional ‘lawyer’ or ‘doctor’. It is a truly interesting debate.

That’s it for today’s post. Feel free to comment below about your thoughts on digital craft.

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