Technology Takeover

Growing up in the 21st century, being categorized as a millennial, it actually aggravates me at times. Do not get me wrong- I have a love/hate relationship with social media, really with technology in general. However, the future is now and our generation and those to come must be prepared for the worst while praying for the best.

In my personal, non-professional opinion, I believe that technology will be running the human race instead of vice versa. Being raised by my grandparents really set the stage for how I approach and use social media. When I walk around campus, I look around and the majority of people have their noses glued to their phones. After reading an article on “brain hacking,” this makes perfect sense. We are literally being brain washed by the apps on our phones to continually keep us coming back for more. “Inadvertently, whether they (Silicon Valley) want to or not, they are shaping the thoughts and feelings and actions of people. They are programming people.” -Tristan Harris, former Google product manager

If we want to find out where in the world Indonesia is, learn how to change the oil in a car, or simply find out how to spell something (type it close enough and spell check will recognize it) or the definition of a word, simply Google it. Most teenagers today would not have a clue how to look up a word the “old fashioned way.” I feel like this has a lot to do with my generation being pegged as “lazy” because we have grown accustomed to finding all the answers within seconds, and at the tip of our fingers to boot. Carrying around a so called smartphone scares me in some ways since I know that technology will only keep advancing. I often ask myself, how far can science go? Will we one day eliminate humans completely if robots and machines can efficiently run and take over almost anything? Humans may one day be the cause of our own demise, well ahead of our time. Another important thing to consider about the use of technology in this time is that currently all our information online is being bought and sold to other companies for the benefit of target advertising and who knows what else. I think government interference and spying on citizens has only skyrocketed since computers with cameras came about, even before then. But, my point is social media was built for all fun and games at first. Now, there almost as many advertisements in my Snapchat stories than there are stories of my actual friends.

A few positive aspects I believe everyone benefits from the use of social media is speed, easy access to information (although how much of what you read online is accurate? Always consider fact checking and vetting any context and sources you use) and also, connections. Based on a social media report from last year, “According to GlobalWebIndex, 98 percent of online consumers (age 16 to 64) globally say they have
visited or used a social network within the last month.” For example, Facebook, the worldwide God Father of social media can connect you with old friends, new friends, and even distant relatives. This social media site is used for entertainment, businesses, advertising, and social interaction. I even have to use Facebook to turn in my homework assignments! However, I see it going as far as integrating all aspects of competing social media platforms and turning it into a one stop shop for social media, completely wiping out all other sites.

AJ Agrawal, CEO, Alumnify wrote an article about what he believes to be the future of social media trends. I happen to agree with a lot of what he says. When discussing the content of posts, there is so much out there to sift through like click-bait, and false advertising, that it makes businesses, particularly social media manager’s jobs even more difficult. Creating the “perfect post” by using Lights, Camera, Action and A.E.I.O.U may not be enough. This day and age, people expect bigger, better things to always come along and replace the “old” version. That is the problem with social media; it can only evolve so far until it reaches a point of extinction or ultimate technology takeover.




Live-Streaming For Life

Live streaming loosely defined is when people literally “go live” on video via Facebook, Instagram or YouTube and friends can watch in real time and engage with you while you are live. A few best practices for going live on Facebook is to always make sure your phone is fully charged because Facebook Live drains your battery. The longer the better, usually 45 minutes to an hour of live streaming will bring in more and more viewers, increasing your audience and engagement.  These practices can apply to other platforms that allow you to live stream such as Instagram.

When going live, remember to have a fully charged phone and a backup charger might not be a bad idea either. Turning your phone to airplane mode will temporarily block calls and push notifications that can distract and take away from your live stream. Clean your camera lens before going live, observe your surroundings and be aware of lighting and angles. If possible, use a tripod to keep the camera steady, but remember to move it around once in awhile to give viewers that 360 panorama, making them feel as if they are right there with you.

One thing that comes with live streaming is the constant questions and comments. The best way to manage the questions that flood in would be to have a buddy on a different device handling all the Q & A’s as they come in while you continue to live stream. They should not only take care of responding to questions but also be aware of the trolls, and ignore them! As you and your friend pick out comments to respond to, the person in front of the camera should orally acknowledge the person commenting by their name and be sure to repeat their question aloud before answering for the rest of the viewers. This can help assure your viewers that you care and it may answer someone elses question all while engaging in real time.

When going live, keep in mind your audience and the capacity of people your video can actually reach. If young children and minors are captured on video, you may need written permission to put them online. People value privacy and may not appreciate being exposed, knowingly or not, on the internet. Easy to forget but maybe the most important ethical consideration is you and your team’s safety. Staying alive is much better than shooting a great live video.

If you are going live to contribute to the promotion of a brand or business, the more knowledgeable you are on the subject being discussed, the more attractive your live feed is, allowing you to gain a bigger audience. There are many different reasons one might want to go live. When there is breaking news and people need to know and see what is happening, go live. Anticipation news is when all the right elements are there for a great moment to be captured live. Immersive news is when you are there and want to share what is happening in the moment, taking your viewers with you. Interactive news is great for business because people and possible customers can participate and ask questions or leave comments that you can later use to boost analytics and engagement. Then there is counter programming, which is another great reason to go live to promote a business because if you go live at just the right day and time, you can actually steal the competitions audience and drive them towards your business.

I believe from personal experience that people like the idea of live streaming because they are watching something happening in that very moment and feel like they won’t miss a thing. However, people tend to watch for a few minutes and move on if they don’t feel engaged. But, if you consider the day and age we live in with technology literally at our fingertips, we have the luxury of going back and watching a live stream on demand later which can be useful for business purposes. With the internet constantly changing, right now marketing on social media using the feature of live streaming is very successful and useful. Do I think something bigger and better will eventually come along and live streaming will be pushed to the back burner? Absolutely. But for now, live stream your hearts out.


Best News Organization’s Social Media Guidelines

Student editors who are managing and maintaining QU Media’s Facebook page must:

  1. Be trained and knowledgeable in Social Media Management.  Must be a Junior or Senior in Communication program studying journalism in order to be eligible for an editor’s position.
  2. Follow the University’s polices, procedures, regulations and guidelines.  Keep in mind when posting for QU Media, that you are representing our logo, brand, and your audience is the Quincy community and school as an entire entity.
  3. Maintain professionalism. Posting for QU Media and to your private Facebook should be kept professional and public. If you post anything related to QU Media on your personal Facebook page, you must include a link to the QU Media website. This also applies to reporters.
  4. Be credited for your post. Do not misuse copyright or trademark or use slander. You are liable for any negative repercussions resulting from your post.
  5. Vet all stories and sources. Verify facts and make sure you use legitimate sources.
  6. Differentiate and distinguish the difference between opinions and facts. Let your audience know when you are posting your personal opinion (editorial) versus a factual based post.
  7. All controversial posts must be approved by communication professors. If posting about a sensitive subject, must have approval by all QU Media communication professors.
  8. Be original.  Do not share, re-post, or re-blog content.
  9. Be aware of consequences of “wrongful practices.” Follow and be conscious of QU Media guidelines and general social media practices while posting. Be responsible. Do not use click bait. Do not sensationalize stories or embellish.
  10. Engagement. Your goal as a social media manager for QU Media should be to increase engagement and page likes. Post at least once a day to our Facebook page. Create a live video at least once a week pertaining to any current issues on campus or community. Reply to all comments and use the three strike rule when it comes to trolling on your post.