Kimberly H- The use of emoticons

In Chapter 3 of Personal Connections in the Digital Age Baym mentions how emoticons are built into new media in order to let individuals convey graphic expressions of emotion (16). On the iPhone for example, the app ‘Emoji’ allows users to choose from several pages of emoticons. These emoticons range from traditional happy and sad faces to a range of food items, flowers, holiday symbols, and many more. These non-verbal forms of expression help people illustrate feeling through text messages or other online chats.

1st Article:
2nd article:

In the first article, it is mentioned how “like all beloved things originating on digital platforms, Emojis are now part of real life” (Egan). The rise of emojis is evident through their placement in online promotions (as seen in the article):


The next one mentions how “using emoji, emoticons and GIFs in a texted conversation instantly signals the difference between sincerity and a joke or sarcasm” (Wortham). What is interesting about emoticons is the idea that you can sense how a person is situating a text message through their use of emojis. Whether they are an avid user of a particular face, or don’t use any at all – it helps the person receiving the message understand it better.

There are even instances of conversations made up of emoticons:


Are digital technologies empowering? Do they give people more and better ways of expressing themselves? Or do they stop people having real one-to-one conversations where they can share real emotions?

Christopher G. – We Can Be In Two Places At Once!

With the technology we have in our society today, we can now be in two places at once. Our body can physically be in one place, while our mind is set in another. This is done when people use their phone in public. By tuning into your phones, you are tuning out where you are and what is around you. We are physically in public, but mentally in a made up world where we are interacting with friends and celebrities or playing games. We disregard the things around us and focus on the world within our phones. There are many videos online that make fun of this such as videos of people falling because they don’t pay attention where they are walking.

Watch a girl fall into a mall fountain:

Even the new has brought forth issues of people being absorbed into their phones, because they do not notice what is around them and see it as dangerous. In New Jersey they actually banned texting while walking because of how dangerous it can be and if you are caught doing so you will be fined $85.

$85 fine for texting and walking:

Phones have become so distracting to users and enable them to easily disconnect from reality to the point where they will not notice anything around them until they tune back into the real world. One of the most disturbing example of this is from San Francisco where a man had a gun in plain sight on a train and no one noticed because they were on their phones.

Phone Users Don’t Notice Gun:

In addition, we all hate that person who is distracted by their phone while you are hanging out. It affects the personal relationships you have with the people you hangout with and makes people think you are rude. With all this said, watch the video posted above and get off your phone!

Sarah Kagan- The link between social media, business, and fame

Sarah Kagan- The link between social media, business, and fame

For some people Instagram is a hobbie…. while others have turned it into a business. This article focuses on two females who have dedicated their lives to increasing their “insta-fame”. 

As discussed in class, many people are spending more and more time editing and creating cyber personna’s. The whole idea of an internet personality or life has become more and more important in many people’s lives. 


Amanda Voisin – Not Being on Social Media Making Employers Suspicious?

Does Not Having a Facebook Page Make You ‘Suspicious’ to Employers?

Like many university students at this time of year, I have recently been purging the content on my social media accounts in preparation for job application for the upcoming summer. I was doing a bit of research online to determine what it is exactly that employers look for when digging through the social media sites of prospective hires, and I came across this article from TIME Magazine. In this article, various professionals discuss the impacts of Facebook use and the way that it affects their perceptions of potential employees. I have to admit, I was somewhat surprised by their opinions. 

Over the years, I have considered simply deleting my Facebook account several times. For many young twenty-somethings looking for a summer job, this may seem like the easiest way to control their online profile. However, according to TIME Magazine‘s article, employers are likely to be even more suspicious if a potential employee does not have a Facebook page. Some professionals interviewed in the article even go so far to suggest that “such ‘absolute abstinence’ from social-media sites indicates a possibly dangerous level of withdrawal from society”, which I’m sure is definitely not the impression that most students would like to give. This reveals that as communications technologies, specifically social media websites, have become more and more ingrained in society’s framework, employers’ viewpoints have transformed as well. They now have certain expectations about the social media presence of potential employees, and if these expectations are proven wrong and they cannot find an applicant online at all they become uneasy. 

Maybe censoring our social media sites so strictly is overrated? Then again, that could just be the lazy student in me talking. 

Susanna T.- Facebook Boosts Connections, Not Happiness’

I found this article interesting because it claims that frequent photo posting on Facebook can actually damage real life relationships, and that although we seemingly have tons of “friends” when we browse this social network, we actually leave the site feeling lonelier and worse then before. 

In class we questioned whether or not our relationships online are natural or real, and although I am not sure I particularly agree with the study’s findings, I think it is interesting to take into account the idea that even though we perceive our social lives online as the new norm, social networking is actually decreasing our overall happiness and subsequently ruining our real life relationships. Even technology in general we are starting to realize are taking tolls on our real face-to-face interactions of people, in class for example, we discussed how some people can text all day everyday and be in tune with their online lives but when it comes to sitting down and eating with someone at a restaurant they are disconnected and absent. 

Roxi N- Tinder:”I recommend it for those guys that tend to message girls on Facebook regularly and receive no response, or those guys that fall in love with anonymous Twitter accounts.”

I found this great article that relates to January 28th’s class. This article bluntly draws attention to how Tinder and Snapchat have become socially-awkward dating apps. I absolutely agree with everything in this article. 

Admittedly, I had downloaded both the apps at one time. Snapchat was just an easier way to send pictures and videos to a lot of people at once, and Tinder was a confidence boost.

(My experience with tinder only lasted a day, as my friend told me to get it and the creepy app-dating scene wasn’t meant for me.) I, personally, never took the app too seriously and didn’t think anyone else did either. Nowadays, however, it is taken very seriously. Three of my friends have dated/ are dating guys they met on Tinder! Many others have gone on ‘dates’ or simply hooked up with others. I find this disgusting as it ruins any need for real interaction or social skills. Women who are willing to hook up with a stranger they met online must not be too hard to get anyways, so why not try your luck in person? 

Though I know people love their Tinder, I wish they could see it the way I do. Girls, the amount of boys you have messaging you does not mean you’re beautiful. In fact, most of the guys probably say yes to anyone. You most likely looked easy enough to them to hook up with and maybe have a fling. These boys clearly don’t care about your inner beauty, they don’t care about how you are doing at school and they don’t want to meet your parents. Everyone wants to feel beautiful, but no one wants to tell their kids they met through a ‘hook up’ app.


Read Article Here

Allison B – Tinder Article

I just found this article and thought it suited our discussion in class yesterday. As we discussed the features of Tinder, someone mentioned that users can upload pictures and add a description of themselves (and even their Blackberry PIN) to the “about me” section. This article takes on a female point of view on the 5 ways that girls  analyze guy’s pictures. It is kind of interesting and humorous but in this day and age, it is so realistic and embarrassing (or genius?) of Gen-Y women.