We are living in an age where we do almost everything online, from work, communicating with friends (or strangers) and finding love to watching our favourite TV programmes. As such, internet access is available in more public locations than ever before.
With the social media boom that has transformed our lives in the last decade, it is no secret that the need to connect with one another is central to our day-to-day existence. Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat and Instagram, among others, make it easy to communicate in an increasingly busy world, we are now able to Skype across time zones and send videos as events happen.
People tend to ignore marketers' messages on social media, mainly due to frustration over quantity and sometimes irrelevancy of adverts... The best quality content is not necessarily expensive to create; but definitely appealing to people. In different words, brands need to act more like human.
Here I am, trying to purchase an athletic looking CK bra, like the ones all the rage in the 90s. This is day three of my hunt, the shop was sold out and so far I am having little luck online. I will not admit defeat though as Calvin Klein Underwear is currently 'cooler than cool'.
My family, it appears, are a 'bunch of ugly, sad losers'. My wife is so 'desperate' to leave me that she will '**** the next man she has a drink with'. My beautiful children are, variously, 'pathetic... spoilt... probably adopted' because I am 'unable to get it up... a waste of space... a miserable, untalented tosser'. Worst of all though, my kitchen is 'hideous'. So this is what being trolled feels like... The other week I wrote what I felt was a thought-provoking, if slightly tongue-in-cheek, confessional about my enforced 12-month sabbatical as a stay-at-home dad trying to set up a new business after sudden redundancy.
By now you'll have probably heard of Breanna Mitchell, the teenage girl who posted a selfie smiling at Auschwitz concentration camp. Although she posted the photo some time ago (June 20th), it has only recently gone viral - clocking up more than 3300 retweets and a barrage of abuse over the past few days.
Was the study really as sinister as many are making out? I think not... Facebook and other big sites conduct experiments on their users every day, using data to improve their product as well as the user experience... In reality, the #FacebookExperiment is little more than website optimisation.
Connectedness, as the merging and integration of technology, people, global communities, is 'the real world' today... what young generation hasn't had their own paradigm shift to content with over the years - the sexual revolution, post-war modernism, woman's rights, gay rights, the structure of the workplace, informality, the changing structure of the family unit...
I've struggled with negative body image my entire life. Born missing my left arm and then at 18 months of age suffering third degree burns to 14% of my body after knocking boiling water on myself while struggling to get used to a prosthetic arm. I grew up looking and feeling different - in a society where so much emphasis is placed on physical appearance and the desire for perfection - I felt isolated and alone.
People sharing their joy on Facebook indirectly puts down other people's achievements... life has its ups and downs, and of course it's only the former that gets shared, for the most part. However, getting below the coveted 2:1 makes others feel they can't share their success.
David Cameron, or rather whoever it is who Tweets for him (from an iPhone, interestingly), should have set aside 20 minutes after he finished firing out the infochunks™ and replied to some users. Retweeted some comments. That's where the real value of social media lies and he missed a big opportunity. The problem is widespread - a study into the types of tweets that MPs were writing found that only 28.7% were part of conversations - using the @ function. That is far too low. Social networks demand many-to-many-interaction. Social media is about talking and listening. It's about relationships.
As I sat next to my husband of 17 years moaning to me that David Cameron had only appointed the three women he had because they were women, not because they were competent, it made me want to thrust their CVs in his face and maybe down his throat.
Some stories are best told with visualisation... They aren't flashy; they are simple and designed to convey key information quickly... The amount of data being generated by the World Cup lets us explore anything.
Sexuality is complicated and we all have our secrets and desires, most of which are vastly different from those of the next person. But what it is about sending unsolicited images like this via social media that makes us think this is a 'safe' thing to do?
In general, unionised workers are better off than non-unionised. Even in Britain, home to the toughest anti-union legislation in Western Europe, unions make a difference; strong unions make a bigger one.
American cyclist Tejay van Garderen branded the craze 'a dangerous mix of vanity and stupidity' ... in this technologically driven age, each spectator wants to prove they were part of the action and hence the selfie found a new arena... it undoubtedly gravitates towards narcissism. 'Look at how much fun I'm having, I want you to envy me'.