Too Much Social Media Causes Loneliness

A study by the University of Pennsylvania, states that more time spent on social media platforms will decrease your mental well-being.

This has always been the case, I can hear you say. However, the University announced that there has been “a causal connection but never been proven.”

How the study worked

Using 143 undergraduate student participants. Scholars at the University of Pennsylvania made the participants fill out a mental well-being survey’s, daily. Whilst, taking screenshots of their iPhone battery, which took place for three weeks.

The participants were then split into two groups. One group limited their time spent on social media to only ten minutes per day per platform. In contrast, the other group did not alter their usual social media usage.

Are you following?

The results show that those who limit their time on social media reduce feelings of loneliness, dramatically.

However, there are problems with this study. Scholars from the University of Pennsylvania admit to not knowing exactly what social media platforms the participants used.

When social media was first introduced it was thought that using the platforms would create a worldwide connection.  Resulting in, reduced loneliness. 

Nevertheless, numbers of mental health issues and feelings of loneliness has soared, in recent years. Begging the question, is social media to blame?

Would you be willing to limit your time on social media? Do you think its nonsense linking mental health issues to social media? Or do you spend too much time on your phone?

Have your say and leave us a message in the comments section!

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Netflix Testing Mobile Subscription Service

Netflix have announced that they are reviewing subscription tiers on the platform. Which means, you could soon see cheaper versions of Netflix rolling out very soon!

What is most exciting is that their cheapest version will be available as an App for your mobile phone.

Although this initiative sounds like Netflix has its users is mind (we love you Netflix) it is actually to get more people to sign up to the subscription.

Currently, out of the 137 million Netflix subscribers worldwide, 58 million are from the USA. The platform is thriving in Europe as well, however it is yet to penetrate Asia.

It is believed that the current subscriptions are too expensive for people in less affluent Asian countries like India, Thailand and Vietnam.

The mobile version of Netflix certainly has these countries in mind. Netflix have announced they are releasing eight new Indian movies and a series.

It has been hinted by the companies CEO, Reed Hastings that the service is likely to be available sometime in 2019.

It is hard to tell if this new initiative will benefit Netflix or not, as it could see people ditch their current subscription for the cheaper mobile option.

Have your say… Would you be willing to subscribe to Netflix if cheaper options were available? Is a mobile app appealing to you? Or are only happy when watching films on a big screen? Leave us your thoughts in the comments section.

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5 Tips to Grow Your Twitter Audience

Twitter is a great social media platform for self-marketing and interacting with like-minded people.

To get good exposure you need followers. The following tips will build your Twitter audience (without too much effort).

1. Select the correct profile picture and cover photo

First impressions are important in real life and in the digital world too. When selecting your profile photo, it is essential to have an appropriate image of yourself.  For example, if you are a fitness influence it would be a good idea to have a profile picture looking ripped.

A cover photo is just as significant as the profile photo and usually it is used to convey your interest. If you are a new author trying to sell your first novel, it would be suitable to use the front cover of your new novel as the cover photo.

This may seem like common sense, but you would be surprised how many people trying to convey a professional image have a photo of themselves intoxicated on a Saturday evening down town.

2. Write an interesting, snappy bio

Bios are a great way to create personality. The best bios are usually short and witty. A snappy pun can captivate your audience and making it relatable is imperative.

3. Tweet

You would be surprised how many users complain that their Twitter profile isn’t growing but don’t actually engage on the platform. Being present on Twitter is the most important advice of all!

4. Respond, retweet and use hashtags

Engaging with others on social media platforms is the best way to gain followers. Furthermore, if you retweet and show an interest you will definitely receive some in reciprocation. Hashtags will also make your tweets easier to come across on Twitter.

5. Know when to tweet and never over-tweet

Twitter engagement peaks at 9 am, Midday and 6 pm.  So, don’t go tweeting important information at 2 am as people are catching Z’s. Albeit, if you tweet too often, your audience are guaranteed to disengage.

Just like attending the gym, if you are persistent and motivated, you’ll be flexing an impressive Twitter profile in no time!

 

 

 

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Virtual and Augmented Reality Set to be a Big Hit in 2019

Investment in both augmented and virtual reality rose in 2018 to £1.27bn. They are both going to be a big success in 2019.

If you are unaware of virtual and augmented reality, then where the hell have you been?

Joking aside, they are both relatively new concepts with neither taking off quite yet.

Virtual reality is basically a computer-generated simulation. Where people can interact with 3D images  through the use of electronic equipment. For example head sets, and censored gloves.

Augmented reality is a technology which produces a computer base image onto the real world. For example, Pokemon GO.

Virtual and augmented reality are used in a variety of ways:

  1. Performance. Holograms of your favourite music artists, for example the Amy Winehouse tour.
  2. Education. Google have introduced both into schools across the U.K already.
  3. Travel. Satellite navigation.
  4. Interaction. Meeting friends and family through augmented reality.

The progress of technology is amazing and it is only going to accelerate in 2019. So don’t be surprised in years to come to catch up with your friends hologram instead of meeting face to face.

Are you excited to see the new advancements in technology in 2019? Does the thought of such technology petrify you?

Leave us your opinion in the comments section.

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TikTok to Take Over Social Media?

TikTok could be the newest social media platform to consume all of our time. Have you ever heard of it?

Me neither. 

TikTok was launched in 2017. It is a social media app which allows users to make short videos and share them on the platform for their friends to see. Using templates provided by TikTok and adding music, users can act out their favourite scene from a movie, dance to a desired sequence or lip sync their most beloved song. Additionally, users are able to go live on the platform too. Similarly to other social media platforms there are followers, likes, hashtags and a comments section.

This app has relatable feel to what both Snapchat and Instagram have to offer.  Nonetheless, in my humble opinion, it is much more fun and less serious.

TikTok already boasts over 300 million active users, with a high percentage of them being in Asia. However, the app is gaining popularity in the USA and because we follow our friends so closely across the pond, don’t be surprised to be hooked here in the U.K in no time.

TikTok appears to be a playful app which currently has no sign of adverts or influencers on the platform. It certainly cracked a smile on my face. Furthermore, for those who are a fan of memes or vines, TikTok will undoubtedly breed more hilarious video content.

TikTok is available in the app store and be sure to have endless hours of fun. Nevertheless, dare I say it, TikTok could be the social media platform to dishevel Instagram and Snapchat.

Are you already in love with TikTok? Or do you think it is just another social media fad? Will TikTok eclipse other social media platforms? Leave us your thoughts in the comments section.

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Dating Apps to Crack Down on ‘Ghosting’

Have you ever used a dating app, met the love of your life and then they never speak to you again? Did you get a match with someone, used your quirkiest chat up line to then be ignored?

Well fear not, in 2019 you may no longer be ghosted.

For those of you who are unfamiliar with the term, ghosting is when you start conversation with a person and then they decide to no longer interact, without explanation.

Heart breaking right? Or just plain rude…

The dating app, Bumble has introduced a new way to encourage its users to be more honest. Bumble will now urge individuals to tell a love interest they are not interested or remind them to continue conversations if they don’t reply.

Furthermore, when using the app, people will be made to accept a ‘ghosting vow’. If users do not comply then it could result in being banned from the dating app.

Cleverly launched this Halloween, Bumble have even employed a ‘ghosting expert’ (what a job) who will give advice to those who are victims of ghosting. Badoo (the world’s most widely used dating app, did you know) has followed similar sanctions to ensure their users are kept happy.

It is thought that this initiative has been added as the population are beginning to lose faith in dating apps.

Social media platforms have made it easy to ‘ghost’ as now there is an option to connect with millions of people. The possibilities of a new love interest are endless!

Let’s hope this is a lesson to all that leading someone on is not cool. However, if ghosting is your thing stick to the U. K’s most loved dating app, Tinder.

Are you still active on dating apps? Or has ghosting put you off? Leave us your opinion in the comment section!

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Apple Ready to Bite into Netflix?

Apple announced that they are launching an online television service to eclipse competitors Netflix and Amazon Prime.

It is reported that the site will first be introduced in America (in the early months of 2019) and will soon be available in 100 countries worldwide. The expected video content has yet to be disclosed, but we can anticipate that Apple will chuck the cheque book at some big projects.

Watching Apple every day will keep Netflix away?

That’s Apple’s idea. If the site is nearly as successful as Netflix it could make them the largest grossing company in the world. However, it will be a tough job to knock Netflix off the top spot of video streaming. After all, Amazon’s attempt has so far been unsuccessful.

The number of Netflix subscribers keeps rising each year, currently there are 30 million users compared to 10 million on Amazon Prime.

Netflix is more than just a video streaming service, it is a brand!

To prove Netflix’s popularity, youth creative agency, ZAK created a poll of 1,000 under 30’s asking for their favourite brand. Surprisingly, Netflix ranked number one, ahead of Amazon, YouTube and Apple.

With outstanding content such as 13 Reasons Why (Netflix’s most Tweeted about series), Stranger Things and Orange is the New Black it doesn’t take a genius to understand why we value the platform so highly.

Netflix has been nestled in our hearts since it became available in the U.K. in 2012, it has revolutionised how we watch television. Amazon Prime has attempted to steal the show. Maybe Apple’s platform will make us realise that Netflix has let themselves go?

Who knows what 2019 will bring for online television? Whatever happens, a new video streaming platform can only make for more healthy competition to ignite your viewing pleasures.

 

 

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Hashtags Are Changing Politics

The hashtag has grown in popularity and awareness since it was introduced on Twitter in 2006.

The founders of the social media platform never intended for it to become such a powerful symbol. It was initial used as a way of organising data and information.

Hashtags are now used as a marketing ploy, a symbol for brands and a way to get involved in online conversation.

But now the hashtag is even shaping politics. Political figures such as Donald Trump and Barack Obama used Twitter as a way to gain followers and get their political messages across to users.

Barack Obama is currently the third most followed person on Twitter, whilst his good pal (I hope you can sense the sarcasm) Donald Trump is seventeenth.

With the midterm elections taking place in America, the highest trending hashtag currently is #ElectionDay. A whole host of celebrities and public figures have been tweeting about their political views and urging people to vote.

Hashtags have also bought concerns into the forefront of public conversations which have then been dealt with by governments. For example, #MeToo sparked conversations about sexual abuse, gender dynamics and harassment in the workplace. #RefugeesWelcome urged governments to rethink their laws on immigration.

#FreeIran #ClimateChange and #ImWithHer are all examples of how great the hashtag now is.

The ‘#’ is an influential symbol when it comes to raising awareness of variety of issues. With 335million Twitter users and 500 million Tweets a day, the social media platform is an easy way to target people with propaganda. The hashtag is the catalyst of trending certain beliefs and is shaping the future of politics!

Have your say, do you think the hashtag has made politics more accessible? Do you think social media platforms are the future of politics? Leave your opinion in the comments section.

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The End of the ‘Like’ Button?

Twitter CEO, Jack Dorsey, has announced that Twitter are going to abolish the Like button.

Dorsey admitted at a recent Twitter event that he was not a fan of the like button and Twitter are looking at ways to introduce new initiatives which will stop people tweeting for likes.

There is increased pressure on social media platforms to ‘clean up’ their sites to improve mental wellbeing and happiness among users.

Psychologists have highlighted that positive validation on social media releases endorphins which can lead to social media addiction. Psychologists have further suggested that a recent trend of users uploading a post then deleting it if it doesn’t receive enough likes is damaging free speech and causing anxiety. 

Be honest, how many of you have deleted posts due to lack of likes?

Twitter has come under major scrutiny in recent years for fake news, data breaches and trolling.

Dorsey seems to finally be taking action in recent weeks. He has promised to deliver a ‘healthier platform’ by demolishing ‘echo chambers’ (a place where everyone agrees and doesn’t allow others to debate) and cracking down on misinformation.

Additionally, Dorsey has stated that Twitter are looking into making verification ticks available for all. In the hope that fake accounts will no longer exists on the social media platform.

And finally, Dorsey also expressed his desire to hide how many followers a user has on Twitter.

If you read our blog Kanye wants to Hide Followers, maybe his message is getting through to the bosses of social media?

Do you think removing likes and followers will make you happier on Twitter? Do you enjoy receiving likes? Or is it affecting your wellbeing? Leave us a message with your thoughts in the comments section!

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LinkedIn: a Platform for the Rap Stars and Footballers?

LinkedIn: a Platform for the Rap Stars and Footballers?

We often associate Linkedin with shirt-and-tie-wearing businessmen and women making connections and championing their career accolades.

Hold up (imagine Dr. Dre’s cameo in the next episode) …

LinkedIn has announced that the social media platform is popular with rappers and footballers.

Music artists usually promote their work on sites such as YouTube, Soundcloud and Spotify. However, over 30,000 rappers have active profiles on LinkedIn.

But why would they bother?

LinkedIn is a place where music artists can make more meaningful connections with record producers, other artists and venue directors. If you request to connect with an industry elite, LinkedIn will let them know you are still waiting for a response after five days.

Currently, world renowned artists such as Jay Z, Drake, Rick Ross and Gucci Mane have LinkedIn profiles. So, who knows after some probing by our friends at LinkedIn they might actually take a look at what you have to offer (we can at least wish).

The best part is that rappers can endorse each other for attributes such as: ‘flow’, ‘song writing’ and ‘grime’.

Unfortunately for aspiring footballers, Gareth Southgate doesn’t have LinkedIn so don’t expect an England call up anytime soon. Yet, this week it was announced that Chilean born footballer Yashir Pinto was approached on LinkedIn by the Palestine national team.

Pinto, who was a Chilean international up until under 20’s was eligible to play for Palestine due to his Grandad being Palestinian. The man who plays top flight football in Chile (it takes him 32 hours to get to an International home game) did not disappoint and scored two goals on his International debut.

This is not the only time a player has been approached on LinkedIn, ex-Leicester City youth player Ethan Hodby used LinkedIn to find himself a club after being released by the Premier League club. His post received over 600 likes and 250 comments. Hodby was approached by lower league clubs with invitations to trial.

This proves how LinkedIn can be a great platform for meaningful connections no matter your career path.

So, good luck to those bombarding Jay-Z with connect requests and football fans trying to find Palestinian ancestors! 

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