Somewhere in the clouds of  news stories on the web, I found BoingBoing wrote about some interesting bit of research done by a PhD student Danah Boyd.  In a catchy titled research called “Social Media is Here to Stay… Now What?”,  Danah neatly reiterated the fact that Social Media is what we need in order for us to satisfy our undying need for conversation and communal cohesion as well as our desire to explore, share and express.

In the research, she also talks about five properties of social media and three dynamics, as quoted below.

1. Persistence. What you say sticks around. This is great for asynchronicity, not so great when everything you’ve ever said has gone down on your permanent record. The bits-wise nature of social media means that a great deal of content produced through social media is persistent by default.

2. Replicability. You can copy and paste a conversation from one medium to another, adding to the persistent nature of it. This is great for being able to share information, but it is also at the crux of rumor-spreading. Worse: while you can replicate a conversation, it’s much easier to alter what’s been said than to confirm that it’s an accurate portrayal of the original conversation.

3. Searchability. My mother would’ve loved to scream search into the air and figure out where I’d run off with friends. She couldn’t; I’m quite thankful. But with social media, it’s quite easy to track someone down or to find someone as a result of searching for content. Search changes the landscape, making information available at our fingertips. This is great in some circumstances, but when trying to avoid those who hold power over you, it may be less than ideal.

4. Scalability. Social media scales things in new ways. Conversations that were intended for just a friend or two might spiral out of control and scale to the entire school or, if it is especially embarrassing, the whole world. Of course, just because something can scale doesn’t mean that it will. Politicians and marketers have learned this one the hard way.

5. (de)locatability. With the mobile, you are dislocated from any particular point in space, but at the same time, location-based technologies make location much more relevant. This paradox means that we are simultaneously more and less connected to physical space.

Those five properties are intertwined, she says, and their implications also carry following three social dynamics.

1. Invisible Audiences. We are used to being able to assess the people around us when we’re speaking. We adjust what we’re saying to account for the audience. Social media introduces all sorts of invisible audiences. There are lurkers who are present at the moment but whom we cannot see, but there are also visitors who access our content at a later date or in a different environment than where we first produced them. As a result, we are having to present ourselves and communicate without fully understanding the potential or actual audience. The potential invisible audiences can be stifling. Of course, there’s plenty of room to put your head in the sand and pretend like those people don’t really exist.

2. Collapsed Contexts. Connected to this is the collapsing of contexts. In choosing what to say when, we account for both the audience and the context more generally. Some behaviors are appropriate in one context but not another, in front of one audience but not others. Social media brings all of these contexts crashing into one another and it’s often difficult to figure out what’s appropriate, let alone what can be understood.

3. Blurring of Public and Private. Finally, there’s the blurring of public and private. These distinctions are normally structured around audience and context with certain places or conversations being “public” or “private.” These distinctions are much harder to manage when you have to contend with the shifts in how the environment is organized.

I’ve just happened to discover the  incredibly talented Kutiman, who runs the pioneering music project called Thru You, whereby he remixes various Youtube UGC videos to make a highly original multi-genre (modern acid jazz, funk, rock, soul and hip-hop) music.  Kutiman essentially brought together the first ever Youtube music band consisting of  various different bedroom talents and Youtube millenials, thus orchestrating a real collaborative,  ankle popping music!

Check out his latest remix video to see how it’s done.

A fellow art and design blogger at Surfstation has posted about an innovative information mapping website called Informapping. It’s an intriguing tool that visualises where international news is being broken around the world on the internet.

According to the site, Washington is the top news breaking city in the world, but it’s kind of obvious thing to proclaim as informapping sources news from AP, CNN, Reuters and NYTimes only which means the real contraflow of global news on the internet could be a little underrepresented, nevertheless it gives a good overview on where news is breaking and with how much of an impact.

informapping

informapping-photo

Google Bot by Tyler Jordan

I’m one of those lucky people whose life involves googling things up for a living. But spending nearly one quarter of my weekly working hours on googling, I began to notice some flaws Google, the biggest information churning engine presents in my very eyes.

1. Google results doesn’t get refreshed with time

Instead it chucks up some of the most boringly old web content that’s probably written even before the dot.com boom. The problem with google is that, whenever a site reaches the first in the ranking, it tend to permanently rot in the very same spot, as any below avarage google user would tell you that they’re prepared to click on anything that comes up first regardless of anything, which means the traffics to those sites ranked in the first are constant and this leads to my second problem.

2. Google’s loyalty to perfect 10

I was talking to a friend the other day who casually mentioned that she never bothers to look beyond the first 10 results in Google. Sadly that means she never gets to discover new and inspiring things that the searchland has to offer, as she’s only limited by the perfect 10 search frame. I mean why shouldn’t it be 20, 30, or even 100!!

3. Badly drawn Google

Why Google, one of the world’s richest tech company, cannot seem to invest in a decent holiday  logo designs? Graphic design has evolved beyond some silly drawings, read LogoDesignLove for goodness’ sake, and pay the artists well..

Despite all these flaws, Google is still our dearest search engine and stuff coming out of GoogleLabs are quite simply amazing but equally, I don’t think I should spend all my working hours googling only to miss out on hidden gems of WWW.

While I was browsing the red carpet photos from the last night’s Oscars, and looking at picture perfect images of the world’s most well dressed women,   I started to think that something was missing from the photos,. and it wasn’t the diamond sparkles, golden glow faces, nor was it the shininess of the widest smile exhibiting the perfect symmetry, but that  something could well be completely unintentional, I thought.  So I went  on a little experiment using mosaic image generator (below you see mosaic images built from thousands of photos found in Flickr pool).

 dita-vo-teese

Dita Von Teese

Penelope Cruz

Penelope Cruz

While the T-Mobile boogey flashmob ad has been the talk of the month, I’ve been invited to take a look at a new viral ad created by Kickers, the rock & wolling shoe brand. The brand has been synonymous with the British popular culture for as long as people from the 80’s and 90’s can remember, as such its shoes are still worn by the popstar feet from Jarvis Cocker (see below) and Arctic Monkeys.

jarvis-shoes

To carry on with the long-standing tradition Kickers pitched in at music festivals around the Britland last year to gather up revelers to throw down their fanciest footwork to come up with below crazy-snazzy viral.

Can you crowdsource a good pair of dancing legs like Kickers?

It’s been snowing for two days in London and it is the heaviest snowing since the 1990’s apparently! With so much snow falling densely over one part of the world, I’m sure there’s a butterfly effect somewhere on the otherside of the world, where there’s barely a snow flake in sight.

Although I wasn’t able to run out and dive into 5 inch snow and feel my socks go soggy, I’ve been snowreeling some 2,400 photos tagged under #uksnow on Flickr (all tagged in the last 48 hours), which I can tell is the biggest simultaneous photo tagging of the white stuff since the World Wide Web was born in the early nineties.

Both the scale of snow and photos taken, we can proudly claim, at least for once, that UK is the most amazing Winter Wonderland ever!

Photo by ciaranj75

Photo by ciaranj75

I happened to stumble across a page in the nearly two weeks old Guardian G2 supplement to find this amazing photo/art project called The End by a graphic designer known as Dill Pixels, guess the inspiration was running low.dill-pixels-the-end

But The End is great!, it’s essentially an art project showing a collection of film frames giving you a glimpse at how the golden age Hollywood movies always ended in predictable prefabrication of triumph and gloria. From snogging couples to all singing and dancing jazz bands, Hollywood movies of the old age would softly brainwash our minds to the utmost degree of vacuousness. But still we’re most satisfied with the knowledge that all things ends in good cheery blossoms and don’t we all love looney tooney endings!

For more  interesting collections from Dill Pixels, please click here.

fredo-violaThis week I was thrilled to have discovered some remarkebly original work from Fredo Viola, a London born artist and a musician who is undeniably the most imaginative art driven fusioneer.  On his equally inspiring website theturn.tv you’ll find that his artistic expression of music is truly multidimentional and free from modern day cliches.

One of Viola’s most well known songs are perhaps The Sad Song in which individually  recorded vocal harmonies are so masterfully orchestrated to create this eclectic  layers of tumultuous melody in the midst of soft electro beats. The result is something you’ve never heard of, which what makes Fredo Viola so genious. See below for a more resent work from Viola.

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I’ve realised that I’m becoming a self-qualified neo-rantist when it comes to TV ads, as such this week I wanted to have a good sniff at the new ad from BBC 6 Music which shows animated graffiti character made of big snout and ears crawling its way around London streets in search of music.

As The Guardian mentioned the ad was created by a creative agency called Rainey Kelly Campbell Roalfe/Y&R, but interestingly, no one seemed to have dug deeper to find that an exactly same creative was originated by BLU, a sketch and graffiti artsit, who created my fav MUTO animated graffiti videos many many months ago. While the new BBC ad looks and sounds to be “cutting edge”, I’m not quite sure how BLU artist feel about having their works emulated by ad agencies.

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