Guest speaker

 

During wednesday session we were graced with a  guest speaker represting the well known Catalan beer Estrella dam. She somehow manages all of the social media for Estrella Dam. what was unique about her story was that she truly started from the ground up. By ground I am referencing her project not her job level for Estrella entrusted her a great deal to be responsible for such a task. With that being said when she was initially assigned the duty of social media, social media wasn’t as pervasive as it is today. Sure ten years ago media platforms such as Facebook or Skype were around but the clientele wasn’t as available as today per say . Facebook for example has since become so big that I could go online right now and know exactly what my grandma is doing via her daily posts. A grandma posting to facebook even five years ago was unheard of let alone everyday. So she was in the right place at the right time but her position allowed her to grow the companies popularity via platforms and an annual video

The videos we watched each told a similar mediterranean themed story. Each year the story budget has gone up and she grew her budget from 100k the first year to 1 million last year. The annual videos add character and explanation to the brand and this is a perfect addition to the social media pages. In terms of the pages on twitter and instagram it is rare to find the actual product in them. This strategy works because Estrella(she) focuses on painting the mediterranean lifestyle. Upon visiting a brand page it is impossible to forget about the product behind the brand so featuring pictures of places like costs brava or Mallorca allows consumers to relate Estrella with their lifestyles. I too feel mediterranean when drinking estrella at bars or on the beach. On twitter their game plan was a little different, there page is simply a calendar of events that they sponsor. Such events include anything from a concert to a film festival. Again not incorporating the actual drink in physical helps their popularity because people begin associating the drink with events and venues that they love to go to. This technique of leaving the actual beer out of their marketing campaigns is great because they are merely building their image. Estrella isn’t the first to use this technique, companies like red bull have embodied and focused on the extreme sports and since their brand success has skyrocketed. The motto is that redbull gives you wings and because of their marketing you cant see someone back flipping a dirt bike or parachuting without there brand logo. Redbull is as common around action sports as gopro. It is insane for a drink to be compared to a high intensity camera but redbull reach is long because of sponsorship but more importantly linking their brand to the action lifestyle. I strongly believe in the “fake it till you make it mindset

Valentí Sanjuan

In the beginning of this class we were told that we would have two guest speakers. Both of which we should research ahead of time. With the first speaker being Valentí I didn’t hesitate to dive into his youtube channel. Upon visiting his youtube channel you meet a very inspirational even eccentric Valentí. The Valentí that made himself his own brand and has been profiting off of it and living life to the fullest ever since. I rightfully glorified who he was because of his youtube followers but when we met him in person we met a different side of Valentí, the human aspect of him if you will. Not to cause confusion, Valentí’s personality and kindness is very transparent through his videos but listening to him in person taught me something else that his videos didn’t. It taught me that he was just a normal person who has learned to adapt to his surroundings in order to stay afloat sometimes literally and is just as curious about where the world is going as we students are. This fact was refreshing in that we talked about this man so much yet he was humble enough to ask us what we watched and why most of the girls in the class aren’t his target audience. On that subject, in class upon being asked who uses youtube regularly me and maybe one other student raised there hands which alarmed Valentí. I however wouldn’t be alarmed because the demographic of the class is to blame for their lack of youtube use. Of course a group of 20 year old sorority girls is going to say that they would rather look at pictures on instagram or watch netflix than watch a youtube video but this is because of who they are and the abroad world they are living in now at 20 years old. Perhaps down the line in their professional lifes they discover how much information youtube has to offer through Ted talks for example than Instagram through pictures they will begin utilizing this tool, or not. Whichever the case this demographic in my class has never been Valentí’s target audience per say, I understand that his message of inspiration doesn’t have an “audience” but his action sports motive does and this audience is very alive and not going anywhere on youtube.  I look up to how he has made a market for himself and his ultramans on youtube, that in itself would be enough to follow him but he has also his digital storytelling team behind him helping produce content nearly everyday which is an amazing feat. One of my biggest issues with youtube is the amount of time a viewer has to wait until a channel uploads a new video but with content coming in everyday Valentí keeps his audience engaged on a daily basis. I’m curious to see where this road takes Valentí, I have no doubt that his creative and down to earth nature will forever put him in a position to be his own boss. Respectfully, I also hope he doesn’t worry too much about what he learned in class for the future of his spanish action sports channels success and market shouldn’t be evaluated through the opinion of 20 or so college girls. They may not be his audience now but somewhere down the road I wouldnt be surprised if they stumbled across one of Valentí’s videos and one video is all he need to gain someones interest.

The myth, the legend, Mavericks California

Mavericks is A place that was once surrounded with myth and speculation just off the foggy coast of small town half moon bay breaks a wave bigger than five-story buildings. A break that would forever change the history of both the california coastline and surf history forever.  The ocean covers more than 70% of our earth & nearly 95% of it remains undiscovered. Mavericks used to be within the 95% of the unexplored until 1967. Although I have never surfed this break, my fascination with this wave came at ten years old when my dad showed me a picture on the front page of a magazine featuring a guy riding a mountain of a wave. The fact that this wave was 30 min. from my house only added to my juvenile stoke. In the following segment, I will detail the history of Mavericks, explain how this particular wave is generated, and how surfers survive this wave.

Currently the wave Mavericks breaks about half a mile off the coast of Pillar Point harbor in half-moon bay California, just 30 min. from the San Francisco bay area. But the story of Mavericks begins 49 years earlier when three local surfers paddled out and watched the massive waves from afar when Alex Matienzo’s pet german Shepard named Maverick swam out to the lineup, this prompted them to name the wave after him. Mavericks was once one of the best kept secrets on earth, and the pioneer who first rode it Jeff Clark, is responsible for keeping this notorious wave a secret for some 25 years.  Although Jeff was 17 years old when he first tamed this 40 ft beast, a 16 year old santa Cruz kid named Jay Moriarty was featured dropping in on a 45 ft. wave on the cover of surfer magazine in 1994.

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What causes such colossal waves here is due to a few factors. One being it’s geopgraphic location. Deep water storms from Japan or Alaska generate powerful swells. Once they reach the Californian coast the surge of water funnels through an underwater canyon caused by a fault, the water is then kicked up off a 20 ft. reef causing a perfect double up (Two separate waves merge to one), generating waves bigger than 60 ft. when it’s firing.This environmental phenomenon is only possible during october through early spring, although it’s said to be the biggest during december and january.Finally, how to survive this wave. There are quite a few cringe worthy factors that make Mavericks so unique.The obvious fear factor, the fact that it’s in the red triangle (shark conservation sanctuary), the water temperature and the deep reef. “If you want the ultimate ride, you have to be willing to pay the ultimate price.”-mark Foo (1994). One cannot simply surf this wave without training. Jay Moriarty trained for four years previous to surfing it, and others train their whole lives for a wave the size of that. Surfers stay safe by firstly knowing where to paddle out, triangulating rocks and stationary objects to keep position. In conclusion, Mavericks is the only known big wave surf spot on the CA coast, with most of the Northern CA coastline still unexplored the next Mavericks could be just an adventure away.cropped-mj-618_348_mavericks-a-brief-history-of-riding-giants-california-style3.jpg

La vida

I have been in Barcelona for a couple months now and time couldn’t be moving faster. The emersion in the slow paced life is ironically making my time here feel fast. I think having already been through the culture shock when I was 14 has made me much more eager to explore, effectively desensitizing any feelings of “shock”. I think the key to overcoming any major homesickness is keeping busy and briefly in touch with life back home via social networks. Things such as watching movies and listening to music makes you still feel connected to that american world. At the same time It is also necessary to limit some of that American influence. Limit in the sense of turning off your phone, or not using snapchat all day. It is good to connect but people often mislabeled obsession with connection, including me! For example, I notice when someone sees something pretty instead of enjoying it they shuffle in there pockets for their phone so that they can post it on their snapchat story that their friends don’t even fully watch. What I’m trying to say is actually be in that moment and although you might get a good flick nothing compares to that initial feeling of actually being there and in that aura. In terms of keeping busy… on a tour of the city the guide identified Barcelona as 60 miles long. With a mere 120 days here, I have an unthinkable amount to explore. Not to mention weekend trips to neighboring countries. There simply isn’t enough time to get caught up in shock like emotions surrounding travel. Keeping busy keeps us sane and the same holds true no matter what part of the world we’re in. There is empowerment in the most simple things such as walking or reading and what better place to indulge in such activities than Barcelona. In addition to Barcelona, another European gift is how insanely close other countries are to one another. A couple weeks ago I visited Nice and was amazed to see how close and different the cultures were. I also distinctly remember crossing from Malaga into Morocco on a Ferry and Spain and Morocco are two very different countries. Again the close vicinity of them is fascinating to me.

Heath Ledger

 

 

lords_of_dogtown_185x270The inspiration for this post came after re watching my favorite movie in high school, Lords of Dogtown. A fast paced surfer movie about the birth of skateboarding and a skate culture that would rule the Californian coast for decades to come. In Lords of Dogtown Ledger plays a strung out beach bum turned store owner/ skate team manager. He plays a character that the audience doesn’t like but his role compliments the movie so well. This is why I value his work so much, even as the villain i find myself rooting for him. It’s not very often that one comes out of a movie and compliments the villain. In Lords of Dogtown Ledgers physicalization is immaculate down to the bone. His every movement complimented and helped develop his character as Skip. Through his body language he made  his character emotionally felt by the audience. In one scene he is drunk hanging off the side of his shop building and his whole demeanor in this scene was controlled but in that moment it’s as if he was a better version of the shop owner from the original story they were recreating . Ledger is the type of actor that you forget is acting, and that is one of the most magical skills an actor can have. Another great example of Ledgers on screen finesse is his role as the Joker in the Dark Knight. The Joker and Skip are similar roles yet Ledgers plays them independently with great success. According to Tim Teeman of The Times Ledger “delivers a career-defining performance” as the Joker. Ledgers acting in The Dark Night is superb to say the least. He was connected to his role as the joker, and his physicality defined his character. From head to toe his posture was that of a “deranged lord of chaos”-Marc Lee, The Daily Telegraph. He carried himself in a contradicting manner, he was lackadaisically with his arms and posture but would straighten up and be direct when scaring someone. Code switching along the way. He mislead the audience a lot, from the illusion of choice with Harvey Dent to the manipulation of the Gotham city police force and government. His voice was too pristine. In a defining scene, Ledger is in a car running away form batman and he sticks his head out of the window and rolls his eyes while letting out a sadistic laugh that just sends chills up your spine. It was minor uses of voice like this that made Ledgers performance as the Joker so great. Ledgers internal work is difficult to articulate with his role as the Joker because his character is so misleading and devious. His tactics were beyond inventive and know one could anticipate the Jokers next move, yet his choices where consistent with his psychology. He was consistent with his inconsistencies, if you will. Ledger had everyone at the edge of their seats with this performance. The entire movie is one big game and the Joker in a way ends up winning.gkvyil

Mobile Journalism

Story telling is something that we as humans have been doing since our existence and will continue to do as time carries on. The central idea behind storytelling is still present but the way in which we report news is ever evolving. Old legends told over campfires turned to public broadcasts of interviews. More recently telling a story to millions has been simplified to pulling out your phone and recording yourself. What comes with mobile journalism in addition to efficiency is mobility. Given these mobile journalists are utilizing platforms such as twitter and facebook to get there message out, the tap of their thumb has the power to inform the whole world about anything. Unfortunately this strength and potential for influence can be a weakness in the wrong hands. For example anybody can become twitter famous and people become famous for doing rather dumb things. The fact that they are “twitter famous”, though, means that they have a collective of individuals listening to whatever deranged stories they decide to tell. Same could potentially hold true for journalists, anybody can buy a tripod and everybody has access to an iphone. With that being said we can rely on the validity of the news source they are reporting for and weed out amateurs if you will. I think this new direction that journalism is heading is great because of the increased accessibility it grants people. In class someone mentioned how bulky and hard a camera is to get around but an iphone goes and sees everything we do and is no bigger than the palm of your hand. Such versatility has granted reporters the ability to share things and events that restrict camera’s and tv. I do think that a regulation with mobile journalism will come eventually but by then I’m confident there will be a simpler more effective type of journalism.

No surveillance

 

imgres-7I think the most threatening aspect of social networks is being overshadowed by cyber bullying and false news. We live in a crazy time with crazy values, especially when people would rather protect there feelings and flow of news than there identity and privacy. Although “feelings” and false news are problems no one questions the amount of information Facebook has access to. We learned that Facebook’s face recognition technologies are better than the CIA’s, that in itself is enough to raise some eyebrows. It has also been speculated and proven by some studies and articles like The price of Free that Facebook  sells information to third parties. So whats stopping Zuckerberg from potentially selling this information to the CIA and whats wrong with the CIA having such access? If allowing the CIA certain information sworn private by Facebook is morally wrong then why isn’t selling to advertisers seen in the same light. I think people are too distracted by more popular issues with technology to actually read what they are giving access to when accepting terms and conditions. Reading through all of those pages is a nuisance but perhaps  that is because such companies don’t want you to read them. How is it that the user manual is one sentence and the terms and conditions are 5+ pages. It is such a well known fact that people dont read these conditions that companies have been known to hide financial compensation within the terms and conditions behind a simple email address. Once this issue is addressed I believe a more private platform will be invented and made available free with the same privatization as telegram. We learned that telegrams producers are so serious about privacy that Putin single handedly kicked them out, thats the type of guaranteed security my friends and I can get behind.  Perhaps telegrams producers will even be responsible for this new social media. A safe network like this is necessary because if Facebook or twitter were to go down theres no saying how much information would be exposed. Americans operate under the “if it’s not broken then don’t fix it” mentality. Therefore mo one will emphasize the value of privacy until all of there information gets stolen and unfortunately a cyber attack might be essential in pushing us towards a more private world. Eventually people will want some type of security in the event of a cyber war or hacking and companies such as telegram are in a perfect position to inherit such cyber responsibilities.

Zen in the (social) network life.

There’s no question that the topic of social media is heavily debated. Conversations about  millennial’s time spent on “that tiny screen” seem to occur more and more. More often than not the  question being asked is are social media platforms bad. Flat out, point blank are apps such as twitter and facebook ruining the way we communicate with each other? The flaw in this question is that it’s hypothetical, twitter and facebook have already been influencing us for years now. The question of whether these social networks are good or bad is outdated because whatever impact they have had on us is past tense.With that being said the way we communicate is crucial because it shapes our culture and who we are. New social networks birthed a new culture, ideals, and even a new set of rules and guidelines. My age demographic has witnesses this technological boom and in a sense were the technological boom. We are living in a technological growth so rapid that we don’t even know the/our potential. More often than not those deeming social media and  such accessibility as bad are from an older generation. Us millennial’s are literally watching this new culture grow, the older demographic is watching theirs deteriorate. No one writes letters anymore, no one uses pay phones and some people don’t even feel the need to talk because they can express themselves online better. The disappearance of this old culture is at the root of older peoples skepticism about everyone staring at those screens. With that being said, there are many negatives surrounding social media. Just like anything, people abuse platforms and this is where the concern is at. In moderation, gmail, twitter and instagram are healthy and progressive but only in moderation. It is easy for these apps to take over your life, however if used properly these apps can cause great joy and even convenience. There is a reoccurring theme that could be applied here: the platforms are not the problem but the users are. As long as you surround yourself with a health community both online and offline one should live in harmony both on the web and in real life. The problems occur when people let these networks take over there lives. When someone sends a friend request instead of actually approaching them, when someone updates snapchat every 30 seconds instead of enjoying what there cameras pointed at. Social media should be used as a tool and not a drug and as long as we respect this we in will be okay.