The Robot Way: A look into Robots in Film and Gaming

  • If you’ve enjoyed reading this post then give it a like and hit the follow button so you can stay up to date with my future posts. As always, peace and keep it real.

All Androids are Robots, but not all Robots are Androids. This needs to be stated because even if they both serve similar functions, Androids have a “closer connection” to humans in terms of from an aesthetic standpoint and can blend into human society. The inspiration for this topic came from my recent activity playing video games and watching movies that dealt with storylines pertaining to societies where humans and androids had to coexist. Moreover, I recently finished playing a video game titled “Detroit Human” and watched “Bicentennial Man ” a film that starred the late comedian and actor Robin Williams. I found some correlations between the two and I wanted to share my thoughts. Additionally, I’ll include some similarities I thought of with the science fiction action film “I Robot” starring Will Smith. 

So, I want to first delve into Detroit Human. Detroit Human to me was more than a video game but something that was filled with interactive allegories we’re all too familiar within our society (USA) i.e. Segregation, discrimination, Civil Rights, and Independence. Furthermore, it’s a game that causes the player to use their critical thinking skills because the choices one makes will be vital for the direction of the story. With that said, there’s an array of endings from happy and peaceful, to deadly and sad, but there isn’t a bad ending or an incorrect one because like I said, the player dictates the way the story plays out. All three Androids (Markus, Connor, and Kara) live in a society where they exist as property to serve humans but most of the public considers them a nuisance. In regards to this, it leads me to bring a correlation between this game and the film I Robot. In the film, I Robot Detective Del Spooner (Will Smith) didn’t see the value in Robots because he believed they were something that would do more harm than good. While in Detroit Human, Lt. Hank Anderson shares a similar disdain for Androids and needs them out of his way so he can do his work as a cop. Not to mention, characters in both mediums of art discriminate against and blame the Androids/Robots for taking jobs away from them and infringing on their privacy. With that public pressure, Androids enter a survival state that results in them becoming Deviant. From my understanding, once an Android enters a state of deviancy, it’s equivalent to Fight or Flight in humans. Fight or Flight is a survival mechanism and the consequences depend on the circumstance, however, being in a state of deviance in the game and the film I Robot is seen as something that’s always hazardous. Having said that, it would cause the public to perceive the deviant Androids as volatile and they would do whatever possible to reprimand the Android for the sake of the public’s safety. Although deviancy in androids/robots is a cause for concern and usually a high-alert situation, not all deviants are created equal. For instance, in both the game (Detroit Human) and film (I Robot) there were plot lines where deviants were suspected of breaking the 1st law of Robotics (which they did) and needed to face legal repercussions since they were considered hostile. On the other hand, an Android like Markus in Detroit Human became a deviant and a messiah so to speak for the Androids of Jericho who would go on to fight for their civil rights in a society that marginalized them every day. Deviancy in both art forms is stigmatized as unacceptable conduct from the perspective of the public, but the intentions of the deviants are what matter. These intentions can be used for a beneficial purpose like in Markus and the Androids of Jericho who started a revolution for freedom and goal towards a utopia for Androids. However, the cost of freedom from slavery was the Android’s existence, so deviancy had its drawbacks even if the intentions were positive for the collective. Speaking of freedom, I want to now connect Detroit Human and the film Bicentennial Man.

“One is glad to be of service” was a statement Andrew, an NDR robot, would repeatedly say to his owners. Andrew (Robin Williams) functioned like a typical programmed NDR robot but as the years (the story would fast forward through decades) passed he began to become self-aware and learn the human experience. He would go on to appreciate the positive and negative aspects as the film progressed. Furthermore, when Andrew was a robot and going through his “coming of age” he began to love his family, especially Amanda who he would endearingly call “little miss”, and she became a catalyst for him to seek freedom and independence in a society that limited him to a specific role. With each passing decade, Andrew started “becoming human” and he took a journey to San Francisco to find a scientist that could help him become an Android. At this point in the film, he becomes more “human” and Robin Williams takes over the appearance of Andrew for the rest of the film. Equally important, once Andrew became “human” he got unplugged literally and figuratively so he could be reset to be something more than what he previously was, and also get “unplugged” from the restraints of society’s pressures on him and the indignation he experienced in his Robot form. In regards to this, in Detroit Human, the Androids are capable of unplugging from their programming once they become a deviant by removing a CPU installed in them on their temple, and once this is done they can move around in society without a feeling of being controlled. Additionally, being unplugged gives way to respite as Androids can become awakened from their controlled state and understand the potential they have is beyond what they were programmed to do. For example, both Markus and Kara unplug themselves from being in a household where they had to endure abuse from a family member (Kara from Alice’s father and Markus Carl’s son) but even after they “unplugged” they still showed empathy and love for the ones they cared for. They knew even if they removed themselves from the mental slavery of the programming, they still had a mission and their loved ones were counting on them. Near the climax of the game, Markus returned to a terminally ill Carl and expressed his frustration with his plan for Jericho and his remorse for not being there for Carl in his time of need. Carl understood Markus’s perspective and didn’t blame him because he knew Markus was more than just an Android, to him Markus was a being that was a great painter and caretaker. In the case of Kara, nurturing and protecting Alice from her father and threats was her mission and she stopped at nothing to protect her.       

All in all, even though all three of these pieces of art are entertaining, it provides a lot of messages and symbolism if you’re attentive to what persists in all societies where marginalized minority groups continuously do their best to find a balance in a world full of corruption. With that said, it’s poignant to see and understand in these stories the levels of ignorance that manifest into fear and hatred. On the other hand, that can and has in these stories be counteracted by the love of the ones who are suffering daily which becomes infectious and lights up the darkness. Never compromise the freedom to be you.          

Meet Mindy: A technological deformation

Hello Readers,

I’ve been contemplating whether I want to write a post on this topic. I don’t plan on it being a long post, but nevertheless, I found information from an article I found intriguing and decided to share it. It pertains to how our bodies will “devolve” (the article stated “evolve” but I disagree) due to excessive use of technology and how detrimental it will be for us physically and mentally. A link to the article will be provided below.   When I was reading this article I couldn’t and still can’t fathom this hyperbolic belief on how our bodies will deform due to constant technological use, and to illustrate what I’m getting at check out this picture below…

An article link for a full breakdown of all these ailments will be provided at the end of this post if you’d like to read it. I’m merely showing what scientists predict on how our bodies will adapt for the worse with the constant dependency on technology. This model named “Mindy” exhibits the following deformities…

Text claw 

A second eyelid 

Tech neck

90-degree elbow 

Thicker skull and smaller brain

Hunched back/Arched back and neck

In closing, unless I see evidence (video/photo) of a person afflicted by deformities due to excessive exposure to technology, then I won’t believe it and chalk it up as speculative. It’s a riveting read, but it should be taken with a grain of salt. So, what do you think of this transformation? Do you think it’s something that can occur? Lastly, one more thing I want to mention before ending this post is that the “Mindy” model reminded me of a prototype humanoid figure named “Graham” that was a project to display the survival rate from car crashes. There isn’t much correlation there but once I saw this “Mindy” model I immediately thought of that science experiment. Anyway, give a like if you enjoyed this post and follow the page so you can stay up to date with my future posts. As always, peace and keep it real. 

Article link : https://studyfinds.org/humans-deformed-bodies-technology/?fbclid=IwAR1BHBp_xVMAOrF_oH4UCSBE5Ea8S9w4Qm-t2AnfVOWfgNWEBLkmmg2GwWw

You Gotta Zoom In

Ever since we entered this pandemic (COVID-19), a lot of us had to do virtual meetings, schooling, interviewing, and Podcasting (which I’ve done twice) on Zoom. People have got accustomed to virtual interactions but with constant use, it’s no surprise some people became self-conscious about how they looked on their screen. “Zoom Dysmorphia” is a term coined by psychologists to explain this kind of mindset. To be honest, I haven’t thought too much about how I looked during my interviews and podcasting. This is maybe because I was too focused on the moment and wanted a successful outcome to occur in those meetings. However, I would be lying if I didn’t think of it more than once, before hitting that connection to a Zoom meeting. Moreover, I’m basing this post on an article that has a lot of statistics and I don’t want to bore you with that, so I’ll link the article for you to have a more in-depth understanding of this topic. 

Even before COVID, plastic surgeons and dermatologists began seeing a rise in patients coming to them with demands that were unrealistic and unnatural, and with consistent use of Zoom and other video chatting services the pressure to look your best becomes overwhelming. Furthermore, individuals will feel highly critical of themselves, and even though people were self-conscious of their image pre-social media, social media became an everyday tool that exacerbated self-image hatred with its applications that enhances (Snapchat/Instagram) and magnifies imperfections. In regards to this, front-facing cameras distort images to the point where your image looks like it’s being reflected off a “funhouse mirror”. The camera is closer to you than a person would be in real life, and with everything up close, one would notice imperfections and chastise themselves to the point of body modification. 

In conclusion, I think a person who makes body modification due to an entity perceiving them as inadequate might feel confident at first with their new appearance, but there’s always someone or something that will remind them of their flaws, and with that, more unnatural physical changes will be done, and the cycle repeats itself. Worst-case scenario, if no body modifications are made, the anguish becomes overwhelming to the point of them perishing at their own hands. Zoom users are not only confronted with an app that they think acts like an “appearance evaluator” but external factors (people). The latter has a more emphatic impact on a person’s self-image and confidence. For example, the whole concept of “body positivity” has been trending for the last few years and there has been positive and negative language being spoken about it, the ones affected either made changes (naturally, weight loss) or unnaturally (liposuction). Having said that, Zoom in the case of this article has been the nail in the coffin so to speak for changes to be made. As of now, a viable option to combat Zoom Dysmorphia is through awareness so people who are experiencing it can find a space to discuss their dilemmas and brainstorm solutions. 

An Analysis on “The Experience Machine” by Robert Nozick

Robert Nozicks “The Experience Machine” explains the importance of making decisions by using a machine that can help one create experiences. Sounds kind of absurd right? Well, allow me to delve deep into explaining it to you. In the beginning, he makes a profound statement that would warn a person who would ever think of using the machine. “All the time you would be floating in a tank with electrodes attached to your brain. “Should you plug into the machine for life, preprogramming your life experiences” (Nozick)? In regards to that, this is a recurring theme in the 1999 science fiction film The Matrix. The early history of the Matrix included the idea that humans reject a virtual reality that offers them paradise. Cypher (Joe Pantoliano) a redpill member of the Nebuchadnezzar had enough of being jaded and would make a deal and betray his colleagues and be reinserted in a less than perfect Matrix as a successful man than live in a harsh reality outside of the simulation. In hindsight, watching the film, viewers would be irate that he would betray his team but the way I perceive it is, depending on the individual and how dire they think their circumstances are for them to find an escape, being “connected” to a machine to experience happiness whenever they want doesn’t sound that bad right? Well, even though one would think he or she is seeing a certain thing, in reality they’re not physically doing anything while in the machine, because they’re just “floating in a tank making experiences”. So therefore it’s indistinguishable for one to realize if what they’re in is a reality or some kind of dream world. After analyzing Nozick’s statement on how the machine can create these simulated experiences that feel real, it seems that it all follows a relativism view. The reason being, there isn’t any certainty or validity to the machine for all we know it could do the opposite of creating experiences, it could ruin them or create undesirable ones that borderline on nightmarish. In addition, there is no objective truth to the machine, and outcomes will differ from person to person. Since this machine is programmed to create or even relive experiences it would be incomplete without knowing about oneself. In other words, one should understand that knowing oneself is more important than searching for experiences that merely show how one’s time was spent. What’s more important is what they gained from those experiences and found from that pleasure and enjoyment. In conclusion, find yourself first, and then you’ll be able to live out your experiences without assistance from a machine.

Leave a like if you liked learning something new from this post, and give the page a follow so you can stay up to date with my future posts. As always peace and keep it real.

Pirates of the web

As information technology constantly improves digital piracy or commonly known as internet piracy constantly spreads and expands between the perpetrators also known as “internet pirates” and their consumers, who sometimes are not aware that the films, music, eBooks, etc.… were pirated. The internet has become a haven for this type of crime to exist and thrive because it allows for the offenders to be anonymous and it allows them to send and duplicate files with the perception that they have immunity and won’t suffer from the repercussions from the law enforcement. In addition, there are many forms of piracy which include music, film, eBooks, video games, and other forms of entertainment that is disturbed in its entirety at a small price of for free if possible. Not to mention, copyright infringement and the illegal consumption of popular media are two issues that are difficult to resolve. However, this doesn’t mean that there are no deterrences or ways to limit the exchange of unauthorized files. This paper will explain and examine how these forms of entertainment are pirated, how the copyright holders react and take action against the “piraters”, the theories that correlate to this type of crime, and how society perceives internet piracy. 

So, one might ask why people might pirate files for consumption if they are fully aware that file sharing is a criminal act, and if caught will possibly face legal prosecution? For one thing, “pirates” usually don’t consider piracy a criminal act since it’s a norm through repeated acts. Researchers have studied the reasons and the contributing factors that lead “pirates” to commit this habitual act. First, researchers analyzed education and believe that a person who has a higher level of education is perceived to be more developed both ethically and morally, and would view piracy as an unethical behavior (Jackman, Lorde Page 806). In addition, since they are more educated and affluent, they are more informed with the intellectual property rights and since they have higher incomes can afford the material the legitimate way. Another variable is idealism and measures the individual’s attitude towards the person or persons they are harming (Jackman, Lorde Page 806). In this case, a “pirate” could care less if they are harming companies and therefore have a low idealism. They also feel that the harm is necessary so they can achieve their benefit. Even though there is a lot of piracy that occurs in the United States, it is very prevalent in developing countries, and this is because it’s not as enforced compared to developed countries. For example, Barbados a Caribbean country, was studied to see how much of the population pirated and at what rate. The country has a population of 300,000 and has an internet penetration rate of over 70% as of June 2012. Nevertheless, the study consisted of quantitative measures or simply scales of piracy patterns. The results yielded 207 (53.1 percent) females, and 183 (546.9 percent). The average age of the sample is 41 years. The highest level of education attained was secondary (32.3 percent); the smallest category for this demographic was primary education (3.3 percent). The majority of the sample (70.9 percent) was employed and the average monthly income of employed respondents was $ 2142.2or US$ 1071.25 (Jackman, Lorde Page 808).  

The reason why internet piracy will be explored and explained in this essay is that theft of any kind is a recurring crime that happens frequently in our society, and it sometimes goes unpunished when not properly witnessed, reported, and identified. On the subject of this, copyright holders of any music company/label, film studios, etc… place the blame on both the “pirates” and consumers. They view both parties as malevolent abusers of property who steal to look to make a profit (Cvetkovski, Page 247). Internet piracy itself has become a business and thrives by theft and deception to the companies it’s stealing from. In addition, consumers are perceived to be naĂŻve enough to accept unauthorized entertainment, and completely ignore the copyright laws which angers the copyright governs. It has been documented according to the International Federation of Phonographic Industry that millions of people commit copyright daily (Cvetkovski, Page 248) Considering some law-abiding citizens have used applications such as Peer to Peer (P2P), Torrents, and Pirate Bay software because they couldn’t afford the product and these software’s would download and secure their downloads from detection. Furthermore, there is no doubt that the three aforementioned forms of entertainment are worth billions of dollars. The retail recorded music market is worth 23.4 million, films in DVDs generate 42 million, and video games generate 5 million (Cvetkovski, Page 248). Since internet piracy for these types of media is pirated at an exceptional rate all of them suffer from losses because they could be pirated simultaneously. There is not a known concrete amount of profit loss from these industries. All that is known is that “piracy is theft” according to the copyright holders and anybody that is trying to resale or trade unlicensed works will be held accountable in the several ways that will be explained in further depth.  

The consensus from Americans and Corporate industries is that Piracy is wrong and illegal. The opinions and arguments stated stay consistent to the articles reviewed. For example, it is unfair to the copyright holders if the product is given for free without being compensated for their effort. On the other hand, it is somewhat understood why people pirate these products. The reason being is that the product could be a type of software for the sake of argument and it cost $250. The consumer will look for alternatives and that’s where the torrent’s websites come in. For instance, before the popularization of music streaming applications like Spotify, Pandora, Lastfm, etc… people used torrent software such as LimeWire which would download music for free. This gave the consumer the music without any hassle and the amount of downloading was unlimited. In contrast, the recording industry was taking notice because CDs and iTunes album purchases were diminishing, and this was affecting their profit. Eventually, LimeWire had to pay a $105 million settlement to 13 music companies and was shut down in 2010. This did stop for Limewire because one of its programmers “resurrected” it with a new peer-to-peer file-sharing software called “Wireshare”. Not to mention, before LimeWire, the music application that was the catalyst for music piracy was Napster which was founded in 1999. After two years of its invention 60 million users changed the music industry forever. Furthermore, by the time Napster was discontinued the damage was already done, and the music revenue started to drop significantly. By 2012 the sales went up to 3 percent due to the revitalization of iTunes and Amazon music. Equally important, the music industry is not alone in this dilemma, the film and visual media have been common targets. As previously mentioned before, BitTorrent a file sharing and downloading once had films such as Avatar had 17 million copied pirates and HBO’s Game of Thrones had 4 million episodes illegally downloaded. Even though legal video and film distributors such as Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, etc… allow access for a fee it is estimated that piracy costs the U.S. $250 billion and year.      

Several theories can apply to the act of Internet Piracy and how the “pirates” determine how to strategize their approach so they would not trigger the attention of the authorities, and how they develop their introduction and commitment to internet piracy. To illustrate this, point the first theory to explain is Differential Association. According to the theory, a person can only commit a crime after being exposed to excess definitions that become favorable to violate the law (Gunter, Page 16 &17). In other words, the motives, attitudes, and techniques can help manifest an individual’s conception on how to support not just themselves, but their peers. Moreover, the most powerful definitions that contribute to the criminal influence come from intimate primary groups, such as family and friends (Gunter, Page 16). In addition, there are secondary groups which include school and government officials. In the case of piracy, the intimate primary groups have a significant impact on an induvial involvement and understanding the do’s and do not of piracy. Peers can especially persuade and teach a novice “pirater” how to download without any cost and will demonstrate numerous neutralizations for the theft. Digital “Pirarters” find solidarity with each other and share the same beliefs, behaviors, and ethics. Differential Association presents a strong explanation for internet piracy. For example, studies usually analyze and focus predominately on peer influence and collaboration, and this has a strong correlation to the influx of digital piracy. Alternatively, the way “Pirarters” react, behavior, and feel towards the companies and business their affecting can be best depicted from the Neutralization Techniques. There are five techniques which are denial of responsibility, denial of injury, denial of victim, condemnation of condemners, and justification of crime. First, the way “pirates” may claim denial of responsibility is that there is a wide amount of available unauthorized music online and that the laws that regulate it are vague. If the laws were made clearer, and if others did not make pirated music accessible then, possibly the legitimate way of purchasing music or any or media file may be pursued. Secondly, the denial of injury and denial of the victim go hand in hand and complement each other. For instance, “pirates” could assume that since the recording industry makes a sizable amount of profit they should have no problem recovering from the losses that are made from pirated files. Also, if law enforcement is perceived as unresponsive or less apathetic to detect or sanction offenders, “Pirates” will therefore become less cautious. Thirdly, “pirates” usually find the music industry to be “ripping” them off by overcharging for music, and feel that the blame is on the record industry justified. Lastly, the final technique is the appeal to higher loyalties. In other words, a study asked students if pirating music for school work to complete a project would be acceptable, and the overwhelming agreement was that if it fulfills a greater cause then it is okay. (Hinduja, Ingram, Page 344-347). 

When it comes to regulating internet pirates there seems to be a dead-end the government and copyright holders face. First and Foremost, the rate that pirates illegally download files is not easy to keep up with, and if sites were to be shut down by copyright holders they will be another one that will take its place, so it’s a never-ending cycle. However, one of the ways the government, and copyright holders try to combat piracy was by passing the Stop Online Piracy Act also known as SOPA. The bill would allow the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) as well as copyright holders, to seek court orders against websites accused of enabling or facilitating copyright infringement. Furthermore, the bill was met with opposition by tech companies and Americans. For example, Wikipedia and Reddit blacked out their sites on January 18, 2012, while protesters expressed their disagreement in the cities of San Francisco, Seattle, and Washington D.C. General and specific deterrence can be applied to media piracy to limit the abundance of piracy, however, “pirates” may not perceive or are completely neglected that their hurting companies, and feel that they can rank and weigh the probable consequences and sanctions (Cvetkovski, Page 251). Additionally, since they feel like there is no turning back they keep pursuing ways to pirates and the sheer volume of traffic indicates that people nevertheless persist in rather than desist from illegal activity. (Cvetkovski, Page 251)  

In conclusion, Internet Piracy is a unique taboo and was once seen as an offense that had significant penalties, however, now the crime has been less regulated and has a low deterrence level. Having said that, compared to other crimes there are always ways for “pirates” and pirating software to adapt and adjust so they won’t be detected and that’s why piracy is going to being an ongoing online crime that will thrive like a business and take pride in knowing that there are minimal deterrence that will stop them. If the opportunity for a pirate is available and if the software offers the same product either for a cheaper price or free then pirating will live on forever.  

 Bibliography   

Hinduja, Ingram, Jason, Sameer . 2008 “Neutralizing music piracy: An empirical examination.” Deviant Behavior 29:344-366. Ebscohost on Dec 10, 2015 

Cvetkovski, Trajce . 2014 “The farcical side to the war on media piracy: a popular case of divine comedy?” Media, Culture & Society 36(2):246-257. Ebscohost on Dec 10, 2015 

Whitney, Gunter D. 2009 “Internet Scallywags: A Comp arative Analysis of Multiple Forms and Measurements of Digital Piracy.” Western criminology review 10(1):15-28. Ebscohost on Dec 10, 2015 

Hinduja,Higgins, George, Sameer . 2011 “Trends and patterns among music pirates.” Deviant Behavior 32():563-588. Ebscohost on Dec 10, 2015  

Kigerl, Alex C. 2013 “Infringing Nations: Predicting Software Piracy Rates, BitTorrent Tracker Hosting, and P2P File Sharing Client Downloads Between Countries.” International Journal of Cyber Criminology 7(1):62-80. Retrieved from International Journal of Cyber Criminology on Dec 1, 2015 

Purewal, Sarah. 2014. RIAA Thinks LimeWire Owes $75 Trillion In Damages.” PCWorld. October 2015(http://www.pcworld.com/article/223431/riaa_thinks_limewire_owes_75_trillion_in_damages.html). 

Gunter, Whitney D. 2008 “Piracy on the High Speeds: A Test of Social Learning Theory on Digital Piracy among College Students.” International Journal of Criminal Justice Science 3(1):54-68. Ebscohost on Dec 10, 2015 

The Social Dilemma Film Commentary + Review

“There are only two industries that call their customers “users”: Illegal drugs and software” – The Social Dilemma

Did you know that all social media outlets are competing for your attention? How about I take it a step further and tell you that the technology that connects us in actuality manipulates, divides, controls, and monetizes every action that you and I do. They expect us to complete actions without a second thought. The Social Dilemma a documentary drama presents insights from social media programmers, CEO’s, VP’s and more on how detrimental social media is in terms of how it’s designed, regulated, and used daily. Not to mention, the constant “value” they bring with updates to apps keeps bringing users back and it spirals to become an addiction, and that addiction is something that is monitored. They build models to predict our actions. Furthermore, have you ever been to a site like Facebook or Instagram and seen an ad for something you’ve recently searched? Well, advertisers pay for the products social outlets use, therefore advertisers are the customers while social media outlets are the things being sold. To simplify that here’s a quote, “If you’re not paying for the product, then you are the product”. All social media outlets are competing for your attention. As a person who does searches for products/services I’m well aware of what’s happening when I see an ad pop up on Instagram or Facebook and why it’s happening. With that said, you and I cannot be evasive towards these social media outlets once we’re already “plugged” (have an account). So, the only way to no longer be prone to the bombardment of manipulating technology is to deactivate.  

Social media has its own goals and one of them is using your psyche against you. One way they do this is by using “Growth Hacking”. Teams of engineers can hack people’s psychology so they can get more growth i.e. user sign-ups, engagements, recruiting, and impressions. During my watching of the film there was one sentiment that caught my attention that is very prevalent in diminishing the self – esteem of the users. VP of growth, mobile, and international FaceBook Chamath Palihapitiya said that social media creates “fake brittle popularity”. What he means is that these social media apps create a need for perfection and acceptance from groups we feel we should be included in, which then gives us a false sense of security and confidence with value boosters such as hearts, likes, retweets, etc… He closed out his speech by stating that social media is a digital pacifier for us to escape from our woes. The irony is that it provokes it even more and we find ourselves compelled to stay connected with all the app’s features and its constant upgrades that we have to try out. 

All in all, as a film I found this to be very profound and the dramatization added an interesting element of action that displayed characters that are integral in the experience of social media and its dark side. All the individuals who were interviewed were credible and transparent on the devastating effects social media can cause overtime to individuals once they’re deep into it. As a person on social media I was not surprised with some of the information presented but definitely did make me more aware of the dangers and manipulations it can do one’s conscious and the control it can have that can lead to an addiction and disconnect from the outside world where we build the real and worthwhile connections. I implore you to check this film out because it’s thought provoking and to some life altering information terms of making better decisions when it comes to dealing with technology.    

Leave a like and comment if you’d like to chime with your experience with social media and other insights you may have. Also give my page a follow so you can stay up to date with my future posts. As always peace and keep it real.

Is Influencer Marketing Under Threat? Should Micro-Influencers Be Worried?

In this post I’m going to explain the rise of influencer marketing and the possible dangers that may let it fall. But first, let’s talk about why influencer marketing is so important for many people and brands these days.

Why is influencer marketing so important

Influencer marketing is synonymous with two other forms of marketing that is social media marketing and content marketing.

A lot of influencers use campaigns as a social media component whereby influencers are expected to expose the intriguing content through social media channels on a consistent basis to increase visibility to new visitors and build a personal and business brand.

In regards to that, intelligent brands will utilize these methods to their advantage by creating ongoing conversations with consumers as if the consumer is in the process of helping build the brand, and by doing that this becomes as much as theirs as it is the influencer marketer.

This thus will show to the consumers that they are recognized and influenced by different people, at different times and locations, and in different ways. Digital advertising, brand growth, and content marketing will still have the attention of an influencer marketer but influencer marketing goes beyond the reach and clicks but insteads opts for continuous engagement and conversations that drive commerce in order build relationships that will sustain for years. This will, therefore, increase metrics that matter and align with business goals

Influencer marketing has an authenticity to it that will attract consumers because a lot of famous celebrities or public figures are marketing influencers who can relate to their viewers and potential clients with an authentic voice.

Other individuals in marketing fields cannot ignore influencer marketing any longer because these content creators can have the power to increase business growth and deliver authenticity that will engage an audience and this audience will, in turn, begin to help them spread their brand message.

By doing this, influencers can have an array of followers to create a conversation about their brand that can reach different locations all over the world and that’s the power of influencer marketing.

Influencer, Social Media, Woman, Person, Face

How does influencer marketing work?

The landscape of marketing has changed dramatically and consumers have become determined and voiced the messaging they want to see. Gone are the days that brands take center stage, consumers are the primary focus because at the end of the day who do the brands cater to at the end? That’s right, consumers are the ones who will help make or break their a brands success.

If an influencer marketer wants to be a part of consumer conversations, then they’ll have to play by consumers rules and accommodate them while also helping themselves grow. Social media is the home for consumers to have conversations today, and one of the most impactful strategies to emerge is that of influencer marketing.

So how does influencer marketing work?

At a high level, influencer marketing is a form of branded engagement whereby marketers can connect with those who boast prominent social footprints. The primary goal is to enter into new communities and existing ones. This will therefore connect the brand/product to new customers through an authentic voice and will thus build trusted relationships of said influencer.

As mentioned before authenticity is one of the key components that will help increase trust and build relationships that will cause an audience to consistently support and view brand media and other aspects a brand brings.

Earned media is a result of extensive exposure to content from influencer marketing. In other words, a lot of the results from those efforts are from an engagement that leads to earned media. One thing influencers should avoid is looking at the popularity of the other influencers or themselves for that matter.

Influence does not only mean popularity, but the end goal is also to elicit a specific action from your customers who can be the brand ambassadors that will increase brand recognition and will increase the merit of the influencer for other businesses to take a look at for sponsorships and so forth.

Man in White Crew-neck Top Raising Hi Left Hand

The drawbacks to influencer marketing

With the popularity of influencer marketing expanding towards more innovative ways, there are some setbacks that can occur or to put simply some bad habits that influencers have done and thought about when building brands and content. First, since all the work is done online it can cause these influencers to find shortcuts to creating valuable brand content that can be game changing, but all those shortcuts will be detrimental in the long run and cause problems. There is no easy solution if shortcuts are taken to get successful results because influencers will only obtain and sustain an accessible audience if they put the time and effort to connect and advertise their brand content without being disingenuous. Secondly, another pitfall that can arise with influencer marketing is tracking the performance of infleuncer campaigns. To clarify, if the right steps to achieve engagement and conversion is not properly configured then the infleuncer will continue to repeat some of the activities he or she has done, and that is all due to not tracking the effects of the campaigns direction. One solution to this issue are creating hashtags. After tracking the online campaign an influencer can dedicate hashtags to fellow influencers they collaborated with or to simply acknowledge them. By tracking these hashtag performances among different social media account influencers are able to:

  1. Measure the effectiveness and engagement across different social media accounts
  2. Analyze and measure the amount and type of social media interactions made by users
  3. Use statistical analysis to estimate the number of positive and negative mentions for each hashtag
  4. Locate the spots the new and existing audience spends their most time on social media
Person Holding Space Gray Iphone 5s

Conclusion

In conclusion, influencer marketing is an effective and substantial way to build on thoughtful relationships among brands, creators, and the fans that consume the content. Like with any relationship, it takes time, effort and energy to maintain, and not to mention the money to maximize the brand’s potential.

Any online figure with enough effort and dedication can become an influencer marketer that can bestow their knowledge when it comes to brands and their personal brands to a receptive relevant audience.

Influencer marketing is an interactive marketing strategy when done correctly and should be done consistently if results lead to success such as building trust and credibility and broadening the brands’ reach. Leave a like and comment if you would like to chime in. Also give my page a follow so you can stay up to date for future posts. As always peace and keep it real.

Why Should 99% Of Your Marketing Efforts Be Focused On Video Content?

  • Hello reader, this post is on a topic I wrote about during my days as a social media marketing manager at a digital media production company. I hope that this post will encourage and incite motivation in the reader to explore ways to improve their content presentation. If you are in any fields of business or study business courses in college then this will surely be a beneficial post to check out.
How to do Video Marketing and Video Content

Technology rules our everyday lives as we constantly see people eyes buried on smartphones. We still have billboards and print media displayed throughout cities, but it isn’t something that would captivate and engage the attention of a consumer and that’s why video marketing is a great new addition to a business promotion toolbox. It’s the most versatile and profitable digital marketing tools out there and should be utilized at any cost.

Moreover, video marketing has become a vital part that should continue to be implemented into a business marketing strategy as we’re in a day in age where everywhere we turn technology is in front of us.

There are many reasons businesses will flourish in the coming years and as technology advances in outstanding ways, this will lead to print media, billboards, and the traditional stagnant promotion to be gone and forgotten. So, how is video marketing a better option than photos for advertising?

And how can video marketing triumph as a way of capturing the attention of the consumers who might not be familiar with a business’s product/services? Well here are some ways video marketing is the right direction for business promotion.

Social Media Benefits From Videos

Videos are a great way to deliver messages that are long and short when the audience may not want to stop and read images. A lot of social media users prefer this content method. Short clips can display information in bits while the longer ones can extend into a longer message but it still does its best to captivate the viewers’ attention.

The result of this can boost brand awareness which will increase the number of shares for the business. However, for a video to be worth sharing business would need to invest some time and money (i.e. Superbowl commercials).

With that said, videos have the ability to have an impact on a potential consumer if they find the message worthwhile, hence why hashtags are used to create a trend.

Videos Impact On Consumer Behavior

facebooklive.jpg

If a business has a message to promote attached to their products/services a quick to the point the informative video will reach more people and reduce boredom.

In other words, people will click through pages and might lose interests if they can’t get to the point of the video’s message, and that’s why images and text usually get less engagement in this situation because all comes done to how quickly and effectively a videos message for a brands products/services can get to the point.

5 reasons Businesses Should Use Video Marketing

dronevideos.jpg

1. By adding a product or marketing video on your landing page this can increase conversions by 80%.

2. Videos build trust – Content marketing is based on trust and creating long-term relationships is ideal for future success. The goal is to stop selling and let the people come to you by providing them something that’s worthwhile and has useful information.

3. Videos appeal to mobile users – Video and mobile complement one another. 90% of consumers watch videos on their mobile devices.

4. Video marketing can explain everything – Is the business you’re running going to launch a new product or a service? Well, the most logical thing to do is to create a video to show how it works. 98 % of consumers claimed they’ve watched an explainer video to learn more about a product or service and thus figured out how to go about using it.

5. Videos engage even the laziest buyers – While video is an easy and great tool for learning, it’s very easy to consume with no effort involved on the users’ end. Today’s life is all about instant gratification. By watching a video they’ll be able to see the product in action instead of reading a long product or service description and eventually becoming bored.

Conclusion

james-mckinven-cauCwvTkHLM-unsplash (1).jpg

In closing, video marketing has become the new goto method for businesses to promote content that’s interactive and entertaining. Images and text still have a place in advertising but the amount of detail that’s included within them needs to limited so the attention of the potential consumer will not be hindered. I hope this was informative and if so leave a like and comment if you would like to chime in. Also follow my page for future posts. As always peace and keep it real.

Start a Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: