Dropping a Blog : A Sammi Phillips Story

Student Health On UW-Whitewater Campus
Monday December 15th 2014, 8:18 pm
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Verifying Images Online as Original or Manipulated.
Wednesday May 07th 2014, 11:23 pm
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Have you ever looked at an image online and it looks too good to be true? You think “there is no way they captured that perfectly.”

Now there is a website that allows you to upload a photo and it will tell you if that photo is an original or modified. The website isĀ  izitru.com (pronounced “is it true”). Here is an article from a New York Times blog introducing the new website.

The website helps anyone who uploads a picture on to the internet verify that they are the authentic and that the photo is not someone else’s that has been modified. It also helps viewers looking at an image determine if that photo is an original.

Even though this website isn’t perfect it is a good habit for journalists to verify a photo. As a journalism student, who is also a photography minor, I know that posting pictures online can be tricky. For instance I don’t post any of my serious photography on Facebook because right when upload a picture on Facebook, Facebook owns that image.

izitru.com will help photo journalists and their viewers verify that the image is original. Another good reason to verify if an image is an original or not is because with all the apps offered for iPhones and Androids people can easily manipulate a photo to make it look a certain way, and even tell a completely different story than the truth. This is often done in narrative photography, but as a photo journalist you do not want to be posting pictures that have been modified in order to make the picture describe a different scenario.





Facebook Video Feedback
Monday May 05th 2014, 6:25 pm
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I thought that after my post discussing Twitter’s user feedback it was only necessary to talk about Facebook’s new video feedback feature.

Here is an article from insidefacebook.com discussing the new feature and their reason to offering it. Basically it is supposed to help advertisers and page managers understand how the Facebook community is reacting to their video.

I think that this video feedback is a positive aspect to what Facebook offers for businesses. Its a great way to lure more businesses to use their site instead of having their own independent site, or conjoin it with their own site. Many businesses now, solely use Facebook as their way to connect with people on the internet and this feature will expand their experience.

As a Facebook user (who doesn’t have any advertisement posts or individual pages) I am excited for this businesses, and people promoting themselves via Facebook to use this feature. It will only enhance their posts and keep my news feed more interesting and tailored to my interests.

As an aspiring journalist today I can use this feature to keep my audience engaged and insure that each post I make will be something that Facebook users want to see.


(image from insidefacebook.com)

Storify: Donald Sterling Banned From NBA
Monday May 05th 2014, 5:42 pm
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Twitter Feedback Feature
Monday April 28th 2014, 6:10 am
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I don’t know if this is a new thing that Twitter has started but, I received an email from twitter tonight. That’s not the new feature. The email gave me a recap of my activity on Twitter this past week.

I usually delete emails without reading them when they come from social media sites. Mainly because they just tell me about somebody that commented on my wall, or re-tweeted me and I already know that happened. I’m glad that I didn’t delete this one because I find it really cool.

Basically twitter updates you on how your activity was received by other people on twitter. I think these emails are a smart move for twitter because it makes users want to be more active throughout the week so that they can anxiously await their recap at the end of the week.

It is similar to when we manage our class website and keep track of how many new views we get, how long people visit for, and everything else offered on Google Analytics. Amateur journalists (like myself) can use this feature to link blog posts to my twitter and see who actually uses the twitter platform to be redirected to my blog. I can monitor what type of tweets (funny, informative, links, news) people are most interested in.

Overall this feature can help users turn their twitter into exactly what they want it to be used for, whether that’s starting an online journalism career, tweeting funny pictures, or everyone’s favorite, complaining about whatever they want.



Distracted Driving Month PSA’s
Tuesday April 15th 2014, 10:01 pm
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Yesterday I was watching t.v. and a commercial came on with three young people in a car and the driver was doing something on her phone, the camera angle changed to face looking outside the passenger side window when a huge semi crashes into the car. I was shocked and kind of disturbed from the commercial because I wasn’t aware of what the commercial was going to be about until at the very end when it said “don’t text and drive”

With it being “Distracted Driving Month” there are more PSA’s going to be shown than normal. A new one by Honda features a similar scare tactic but with much less visual shock. Mashable featured this article on Honda’s PSA.

Along with t.v. spots other organizations are actively tweeting to raise awareness on Distracted Driving Month. I mostly wanted to feature this in my blog to help raise awareness. I think that texting and driving has become an epidemic mostly in young people and I feel like no matter how many PSA’s and celebrities are used I still see majority of drivers on their phone while they are driving.

With the amount of social media present today there has to be a way to raise awareness that will truly resonate deep with people. These shocking PSA’s do their job, shock the viewer, but it doesn’t seem to stick with them once they leave their house and get behind the wheel. I feel like it might be one of those things similar to raising awareness on the damage smoking can cause, you only truly understand the danger of it when you know someone, personally, who has been greatly affected by it, and that is such a shame, but hopefully I’m wrong.

Honda’s PSA

PSA I saw the other day (beware: more shocking than Honda’s)

I just wanted to end this mentioning that I am very happy to see all the efforts different companies are putting into stopping texting and driving.

” Eating Lemurs: ‘Not f-ing OK’ “
Monday April 14th 2014, 7:20 pm
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I don’t know if I can call this a “story” considering its only one sentence accompanied by a picture, but I saw this story on Jim Romenesko’s blog today. I wanted to mention it in my blog because we recently had a discussion about story titles and how they can really help attract viewers to your blog/website/or newspaper.

Personally I like the headline, I think that it evokes an instant response, in my case I giggled a little because its so blunt and straight forward, but it definitely made me want to read the article. Not only because the title made me laugh a little but it kind of hints towards the journalists writing style. If they’re willing to take risks in their article title than you can assume that the article will be risky and thought provoking.

I’m curious as to other people’s reaction to this. I think that different age groups will react differently to this article title. I think that one of the reasons why I liked the title is because I often read “The Onion” and it is similar to their style of writing.


How I Met Your Mother Finale (SPOILERS)
Wednesday April 02nd 2014, 9:23 pm
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On Monday, along millions of other viewers I watched the How I met Your Mother series finale.


I started watching the show on Netflix, so I haven’t been a loyal fan for the whole eight years but I have grown some attachment to the show after seeing every episode. Anyways, the series finale aired on Monday night and I haven’t really been looking online to see what fans of the show thought, but I have talked to some of my friends who watched the show. I’ve gotten mixed reviews, some liked it some didn’t, some liked certain parts and not others. Overall I liked the finale, my only issue is how rushed the last episode was.

I really enjoyed seeing how the characters played out over the upcoming years but I wish they could have done that maybe in the last 2 episodes leading up to the finale not putting it all in one. Overall I liked how it ended though because there was a twist at the end (if you didn’t heed my warning earlier HEED THIS ONE, NOW) at the end we find out that the mother dies from some illness and Ted then follows his heart and chases after Robin one last time (with the encouragement of his kids). Real quick– I find it weird that his kids keep calling her “Aunt Robin” when they are encouraging him to go for it.

Some people liked this twist, others didn’t. I found this article on Mashable.com and it I’ve been seeing a good amount of people saying this is how they wished the series would have ended. This alternate ending, that was put together by a fan, basically cuts out the end of the episode where we find out the mom gets sick and dies and Ted goes after Robin. I just wanted to post it here to get some reactions, see how other people feel about this alternate ending.

I love internet for this very reason, when shows end you can get millions of view points and its so easy to share and connect with other fans. I was obsessively on every breaking bad fan site when the series finale was coming because I just loved hearing peoples theories and predictions. As a journalist, I’m mostly interested in entertainment journalism and I think that being able to check out sites and hear a bunch of other people’s point of view on something that is a current event, it helps write a better story. You can reference other people’s predictions and engage your readers more. It also helps you gain followers because they know that you do your research and you value other peoples opinions. Rather than just writing strictly from your first point of view.

“How I Met Your Mother” Alternate Ending.




Earth Hour
Monday March 31st 2014, 2:35 am
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I read this article about Earth Hour that happened on Saturday. I knew nothing about this event and I’m so happy for modern technology and 24/7 news coverage to bring this to my attention.

Major cities around the world went dark for World Wild Fund For Nature. The organization started the event in 2007 to raise awareness in global climate changes. The thing that really brings this story to life is the pictures. Photo journalism is one of my career interests so stories that are visually striking catch my attention faster than a well written story.

The images along with the story couldn’t have been so easily shared if it wasn’t for the internet and the world wide connection that we have now thanks to it. I also think that the story interested me so much is because, living in Wisconsin, we don’t have a “major city” that we could have experienced this event in.


My Dream Destinations via Google Maps
Tuesday March 18th 2014, 2:09 am
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