Author: justinealexismartinez

The Pessimist’s Guide To Optimism In 6 Easy Steps

Piece written by me for ThoughtCatalog.

Thought Catalog

Blue Jasmine / Amazon.comBlue Jasmine / Amazon.com

Two years ago, 2 a.m., another heart-felt conversation about the latest drama, with the nearest party available. I was fueled by the liquid courage typical of vodka cranberries and the feeling that it had just not been my year.
Of course on paper it would probably go down as a giant success. Academic highs, giant steps in my career and an amazingly wonderful group of friends to #live with. It was probably the most fun I’ve ever had at school, but there I was venting my frustrations out to anyone who’d listen. The discussion ranged from romance, friends, school and anything else that was bothering me. And in that half-hour, I realized I hadn’t managed to say one positive thing about my life or myself.
I went home feeling empty; like that conversation had somehow laid out a map of my life, one that was only filled…

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7 Celebrities Who Would Make Awesome BFFs

Piece written by me for ThoughtCatalog.

Thought Catalog

This list was formulated through scientific research and compiled on an accurate scale of whose closet I’d most like to raid — because really, what is friendship without the clothes stealing and outfit envy?

1. Leighton Meester.

s_bukley / Shutterstock.coms_bukley / Shutterstock.com

Unlike her Gossip Girl alter ego, Leighton Meester is a total sweetheart. She’s an indie goddess with awesome taste. Along with fabulous headbands and amazing music (yes I still jam out to “Good Girls Go Bad”), Leighton is the definition of a teen dream. From her role as everyone’s favorite Queen B, to her real-life marriage to adorkable Adam Brody, Leighton is living out every girl’s fantasy. Imagine Sunday brunches with Blair Waldorf and Seth Cohen? Sign me up!

2. Kylie Jenner.

kyliejenner / instagram.comkyliejenner / instagram.com

This is primarily for the wardrobe and the hope that she would introduce me to Jaden Smith, which would put me one step closer to…

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The Rise of Social Media: Works Cited

Works Cited

Netburn, Deborah. “Facebook, Twitter, Other Social Media Are Brain Candy, Study Says.” Los Angeles Times. Los Angeles Times, 08 May 2012.

“5 Surprising Social Media Statistics for 2013.” RSS. Social Media Today, n.d.

“Actionable Analytics for the Web.” Alexa. Amazon, n.d.

“Facebook vs. Google, Social Media vs. SEO: Why BuzzFeed Data Shouldn’t Declare a Winner | Poynter.” Poynter. Poynter, n.d.

“Social Networking Fact Sheet.” Pew Research Centers Internet American Life Project RSS. PewResearch, n.d.

“Social Networking Definition “ Investopedia. Investopedia, n.d.

“Why LinkedIn Is So Successful.” ViewFromIT. View From IT, n.d.

The Rise of Social Media: What Comes Next?

Social media usage has been steadily increasing over the years according to PewResearch. Social media has effects on people’s behaviors and beliefs, with Facebook users more likely to be politically active and more trusting (PewResearch). Of course, with social media at an all-time high it’s impossible to see an end. That is something society will have to come to terms with. Social media has given us all a taste of life with no limitations- at least concerning social boundaries and information. With access to so many intimate details in one another’s lives it is highly unlikely that social media, in some shape or form, will die out. Social media has revolutionized the internet and our perceptions. It has shaped popular culture as well as the lives of the younger generations. They are so used to a life where pictures can be shared at the click of a button that it would be impossible to go back to a world without so much public access.

Social media can be a positive tool and it can be a negative tool. It can connect us to loved ones and the rest of the world, but it can isolate us in it’s pursuit to connect us through technology. Social media is ultimately dependent upon us. It is humanity that shapes social media. Without our consent and without our willingness to feed into the temptation of sharing every detail of our lives social media would cease to exist.

We control what we put on the internet. We control what we share. The only thing we can do is to take that privilege and to use it responsibly. We have made Instagram synonymous with selfie, and Twitter synonymous with hashtag. We have created the same trends that we despise and criticize. If we take caution to only share what we need to, to only interact with those we know and to learn from the articles and videos we share online then social media can be a positive tool. It can be a resource for jobs, relationships and other areas of our lives. It is only when we abuse the power of accessibility that social media becomes a dangerous force.

Share responsibly and the world will be at your fingertips.

 

The Rise of Social Media: What Makes Social Media so Addictive?

The L.A. Times recently reported a study conducted by Harvard University:

In a series of experiments, the researchers found that the act of disclosing information about oneself activates the same sensation of pleasure in the brain that we get from eating food, getting money or having sex. It’s all a matter of degrees of course, (talking about yourself isn’t quite as pleasurable as sex for most of us), but the science makes it clear that our brain considers self-disclosure to be a rewarding experience. (Netburn)

This might explain why social media is so important in today’s society. If sharing about one’s life is a pleasurable experience then it is safe to assume that it is somewhat addicting. Sharing intimate details about the going ons of one’s life is “rewarding”. This is probably why society continues to feed into social media. There is a good feeling associated with status updates and having even the slightest chance of making a connection through social media. Many people long for connection and the opportunity to disclose information about their lives to an attentive audience, and social media provides an outlet for that. The study also found that  “… test subjects would turn down money (just a few cents) to talk about someone else, in order to enjoy the more pleasurable sensation of talking about themselves.” (Netburn). People clearly like talking about themselves and the internet, with the potential for millions to view their statuses, provides the most likely opportunity. With everyone sharing it’s hard to resist falling into the trap. From this study it’s easy to guess why social media has reached a level of unprecedented popularity in today’s day and age.

The Rise of Social Media: Why all the Worry?

Naturally people will ask what is the concern? Social media is a tool designed to connect us, not some uncontrollable force. The above video addresses some of the anxieties concerning social media. Does it really serve to connect us, or does it isolate us as we become more immersed in social media than our real-life connections. What’s so unfortunate about the video is that it was posted to social media site, where people can comment and share it. I found this video shared over 50 times on Facebook alone. It is ironic to think that this video, which argues against the use of technology and social media, is only seen through social media. It will be shared and only made relevant by the thing that it is fighting against. It has over 7 million views on Youtube, yet urges us to get off Youtube.

The problem with arguing against social media is that there is no way to properly do it. Utilizing print and verbal mediums is not nearly as effective as sharing something on Facebook, yet when sharing something on Facebook is buying into the same values that one is trying to change. All in all, social media is a powerful and necessary tool. It allows people to connect and share ideas. However social media can become dangerous when it isolates us and becomes the integral focus of our lives. People should stop striving for likes, and work on communicating and sharing ideas, something that social media was originally intended for.

The Rise of Social Media: 2005- 2014

 

Facebook changed the face of social media in a way that can be described as astounding. By December 30th of 2004, less than a year after Mark Zuckerberg released the Facebook onto the World Wide Web, Facebook had a million users. Only shortly after Facebook was released to high school students and then the general public to create the largest social media site on the Internet. Facebook is the main thing people associate with social media and is the 2nd most visited website on the Internet, according to Alexa.com, only behind Google. Facebook’s influence extends beyond its own site to recent acquisitions, which include Instagram and WhatsApp. WhatsApp is an instant messaging tool mostly used for communication between people in different regions because it is internet-based messaging. Instagram, which is the sixth most popular social media site according to Alexa.com, is a tool used to share and edit photos. Facebook is working towards becoming as large as Google, whose influence has built beyond that of a search engine to a functioning social networking tool that includes e-mailing, instant messaging, photo and profile sharing, and much more. (Poynter.)

Looking at Facebook’s influence can better answer the question of why social media is as important as it is today. Facebook was followed by the creation of Youtube in 2005, Twitter in 2006 and Pinterest in 2010. Among the top six social networking sites on Alexa.com only LinkedIn was developed before Facebook in 2003, and LinkedIn is used strictly for professional-based interactions between employers, employees and those looking for a job. The foundations of LinkedIn are different from the above sites, which focus on connecting and interacting in all forms.  (View From IT). Overall, social media makes up a significant portion of the websites that are most trafficked (Alexa.com). Social networking continues to remain an integral part of our daily lives.

Even looking beyond the Internet social media extends to cell-phone usage. Applications like Instagram and Vine undoubtedly receive a lot more traffic on phones than they do on the Internet since they are mainly made for mobile devices. Beyond our computers social media plays into every aspect of our lives; it has become a go-to tool for connection. A PewResearch study revealed that among the Millennial generation the average number of Facebook friends is 250. Out of that number, how many are actually genuine friends that users communicate with outside of social media? – Probably a lot less than 250. Yet, society obviously feels the need to validate relationships on social media based on the popularity of social media. Friends must be added on Facebook, or followed on Twitter. Romantic relationships must be defined in a profile; pictures must be tagged and liked for relevance. This is how social media functions; without this then profiles just become irrelevant pages with no real application

Social media is no light matter, of the amount of adults online in the United States, 73% are social media users (PewResearch). That is only within the adult age range. 93% of teenagers from age 12-17 use the Internet (PewResearch). 5 million Facebook users are under ten years old (Social Media Today). Obviously social media has become increasingly accessible to the younger generations. At the rate that social media is growing it will probably become as relevant to society as the Internet itself. Social media has already made itself a formidable force on the cell-phone, encouraging the immersion of technology into daily lives by allowing people to download applications onto phones, and making certain applications only available on updated phones. In this way social media is influencing the technology race.

Modern society has become defined by accessibility. It is important to have access to information, people, jobs, etc. With society so used to having everything made available to them with a simple swipe on a smart-phone it doesn’t seem ridiculous that social media is an important part of daily Internet usage.

The Rise of Social Media: 1985-2005

WhoInventedSocialMedia

Welcome to the modern world, where technology is improving with every passing day and the internet is a staple of a majority of American’s lives. In a time dominated by the need to connect, interact and access everything with the click of a button, it should not come as a surprise that social networking has flourished. Social networking applications and sites are internet-based tools designed to connect us on a larger scale by sharing information about ourselves (Investopedia). Social media has become almost inseparable from internet usage, especially among the younger generation. Millennials are among the majority of social media users and are in part the reasons so many of these sites are successful. However one must ask why in an age ruled by trends and keeping-up with the latest accessories, has social media managed to remain a crucial part of internet usage and modern society in general? In short, why is social media so popular?

The only way to examine the “rise” of social media is to trace the origins of our technology-based culture. The obvious starting point is the release of the World Wide Web in 1991. The World Wide Web, or the internet, has become one of the main activities involved in using a computer. The internet has created a world that is accessible at the touch of one’s mouse. But how does one get from Google, originally a search engine established in 1998, to the introduction of Google+, Google circles and Gchat? In 1985 the America Online Service opened up, followed in 1997 by the introduction of blogs. Blogs were crucial to the de

Welcome to the modern world, where technology is improving with every passing day and the Internet is a staple of a majority of American’s lives. In a time dominated by the need to connect, interact and access everything with the click of a button, it should not come as a surprise that social networking has flourished. Social networking applications and sites are internet-based tools designed to connect us on a larger scale by sharing information about ourselves (Investopedia). Social media has become almost inseparable from Internet usage, especially among the younger generation. Millennials are among the majority of social media users and are in part the reasons so many of these sites are successful. However one must ask why in an age ruled by trends and keeping-up with the latest accessories, has social media managed to remain a crucial part of internet usage and modern society in general? In short, why is social media so popular?

The only way to examine the “rise” of social media is to trace the origins of our technology-based culture. The obvious starting point is the release of the World Wide Web in 1991. The World Wide Web, or the Internet, has become one of the main activities involved in using a computer. The Internet has created a world that is accessible at the touch of one’s mouse. But how does one get from Google, originally a search engine established in 1998, to the introduction of Google+, Google circles and Gchat? In 1985 the America Online Service opened up, followed in 1997 by the introduction of blogs. Blogs were crucial to the development of social networking because they were essentially tools for people to begin expressing themselves. Blog posts gave people the first thrills associated with revealing their personal lives.

Of course, when most of the older Millennials think of the beginning of social media they trace it back to Myspace released in 2003. Myspace was essentially the more successful version of Friendster, a social-networking site that allowed its users to create a personal profile. Myspace built upon the idea by incorporating music, broadening the profile and allowing more tools to encourage users to continue interacting on its site, such as private messaging and photo commenting. Myspace introduced social media to the younger generations, and gave way for the introduction of today’s largest social networking site: Facebook.

velopment of social networking because they were essentially tools for people to begin expressing themselves. Blog posts gave people the first thrills associated with revealing their personal lives.

Of course, when most of the older Millennials think of the beginning of social media they trace it back to Myspace released in 2003. Myspace was essentially the more successful version of Friendster, a social-networking site that allowed its users to create a personal profile. Myspace built upon the idea by incorporating music, broadening the profile and allowing more tools to encourage users to continue interacting on its site, such as private messaging and photo commenting. Myspace introduced social media to the younger generations, and gave way for the introduction of today’s largest social networking site: Facebook.

Final Project- Rise of Social Media: Will There Be a Fall?

Inspired by The Circle, my final project will focus on the rise of social media in the past few years, its cultural impact and if there will ever be a time where social media will die out. I aim to address social media’s importance, especially with the younger generation and how social media has transcended beyond a source of entertainment to a “necessary” outlet of expression, communication and interaction for today’s society. I will be doing a paper/blog post with links and articles pertaining to my topic. 

Interesting Links: 

http://www.sssup.it/UploadDocs/6635_8_S_The_rise_of_Social_Media_and_its_Impact_on_mainstream_journalism_Newman_07.pdf

http://multimedia.journalism.berkeley.edu/tutorials/digital-transform/web-20/

http://socialmediatoday.com/steve-olenski/1728511/social-media-usage-on-rise-marketing-implications

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/innovations/wp/2014/01/30/the-rise-and-fall-and-rise-of-the-billion-dollar-social-network/

http://www.policymic.com/articles/79721/study-facebook-will-soon-end-like-another-failed-social-media-site

http://blogs.hbr.org/2014/01/whats-the-endgame-for-social-media/