I am a “Slacktivist” and I Didn’t Even Know It!

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photo credit:href=”https://www.flickr.com/photos/124294922@N05/23298203933/”>bypapah</a&gt; via <a href=”http://compfight.com”>Compfight</a&gt; <a href=”https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/”>cc</a&gt;

 

I am a “Slacktivist” I  and didn’t even know it!

Yesterday I signed the Project of Heart petition for the RIIS cemetery that was tweeted and shared by the UR STARS Regina student group.  It is a petition asking Mayor Michael Fougere to protect the cemetery at the Regina Indian Industrial School (a residential school.)

A couple days before that I signed a petition from Amnesty International against the murder of Berta Caceres in Honduras, I must admit that I did not know much about this case before I signed the petition.

To be fair though, I do think that in some cases simply signing an online petition can be activism, or at least lend support to those with their feet on the ground. I also am quite shy and not the type of person to attend an actual rally so signing an online petition is more than I would have done in the past.

I found this YouTube video that kind of jives with how I feel:

Until we read the articles this week, I wasn’t really that aware of Meerkat. I had just kind of become aware of Periscope because some of the people that I follow on Twitter use it to live stream what they are doing. I think the first time I was aware of the app. was when I saw Cmdr. Chris Hadfield using it. He was using it to do a live Q and A session and was reaching a very large audience that night. These tools also have the power to live broadcast current events and to the audience that is the World Wide Web.

My slacktivism is starting to become more strong though, I am tweeting more and more about social justice issues. I am finding a lot of articles about reconciliation and Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women #mmiw. My Personal Learning Network seems to include a lot of students who are interested in similar topics to me like HeatherAmySarah and Elizabeth, who were in the Anti-Oppressive Summer Institute last summer with me. One of the required readings this week was on the subject of how we can use livestreaming apps to promote justice. Another one was about how slacktivism is having a positive impact.

I now argue that I may be starting as a mere “slacktivist,” but gradually my slacktivism is turning into activism.

What are your thoughts?

Learning How to Watermark

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As I am starting to wrap up my photography project, one thing that I had not done yet was to find a site to add a watermark. I had found a few sites in previous weeks, but they had given me error messages. A few of my classmates including Genna had suggested that I add watermarks to my photos if I was worried about putting my children on my blog.

I also found quite a few apps on my iPhone so downloaded a couple to try. I tried the watermark app as well as the PhotoMarkr app. Here is a site describing those watermarking apps as well as some others.

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As you can see, I still have to figure out the Watermark app more. The PhotoMarkr was slightly easier to use.

I also figured out that I could add text in my flickr account. You can click to see one of my snowy pictures from last week’s adventure.

I also learned how to watermark for free on-line on the watermark-images.com site :

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If I was taking photos professionally I would experiment a lot more with the watermark to make it look better.

Last, but not least here are some (non-watermarked!) photos that I took this week:

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I am starting to think about how I want to display my photos for the final couple of weeks of this learning project. I know that there are a million photo album sites that I could probably link to or I could just link to my flickr account or make a gallery here. That is what I am going to focus on along with creativity and composition (i.e. the rule of thirds) now.

Do you think that watermarks take away from the look of great photos?

Update: I just found this video about how to add a watermark in Microsoft Paint:

 

Don’t Read the Comments!

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photo credit Doug Wildman on Creative Commons on Flickr

This week’s course readings are on Internet trolls. I must live in a bubble because I have never thought about the negative comments and trolling that women go through. Though I am female, I guess I live in a white privileged matriarchal family so have not had to think about it too much.  I, of course, sadly see racist comments on Facebook though.

That being said, I get upset at the littlest thing on Facebook. If I post something about teaching and I get a negative or anti-teaching comment back from a relative I get upset. If I post something on Facebook venting about how hard parenting is and then someone tries to give advice then I get upset.

If I read something about the upcoming Saskatchewan election then I get upset.

If I make the mistake of reading the comments after a news article then I get upset. (Like I said I live in a bubble so I thought this was the worst it got…)

I can’t even imagine what my reaction would be to some of the hateful comments that others have received.

The John Oliver video that we viewed for class this week does a good job of explaining Online Harassment:

Our instructor Katia wrote a blog post about provoking trolls.

I found this article about not reading the comments: “Don’t read the comments”: The trolls, racists and abusers won — reasonable online feedback is a thing of the distant past where the author talks about the abuse that female on line writers suffer. I must admit that I was barely aware of the word misogynist before this class. I also had to look up what doxing meant.

I would argue, though, that if we don’t read the comments that it actually defeats the purpose of having an online community or professional learning network.

How are we going to protect our students from these sorts of comments?

White Balance, Exposure Compensation and Composition

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This week I continue to learn from my online Craftsy class. Of course it was on sale this week for $19.99 and I paid $41.20 last week! It was good to watch the other modules of it because I had been focusing on ISO, aperture and shutter speed. However,  I learned about white balance and exposure compensation this week. I needed to learn some so many of my images have been either too dark or too light. One of the modules also talks about composition and creativity which I need to start thinking about too.

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1. Get to Know Your Camera
2. Light & Exposure
3. Shutter Speed
4. Aperture
5. ISO
6. Shooting Modes
7. Lenses
8. Composition and Creativity
9. Putting It All Together

Here is a video about white balance:

I am also continuing to use my Canon app. to learn:

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Last, but not least, here are some recent pictures I took:

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I need to keep working on the Rule of Thirds. I also need to keep learning about how the exposure triangle all goes together, but slowly but surely my pictures are getting better.

 

 

 

The eyes are following you…

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“It was one of those pictures which are so contrived that the eyes follow you about when you move BIG BROTHER IS WATCHING YOU the caption beneath it ran…”

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The quote above is from George Orwell’s book “1984” where Big Brother watches society and is in charge.

The articles and videos for this week’s EC & I 831 class are about encryption and net neutrality.

Here is a video from John Oliver Tonight about encryption:

In the debate about encryption one side feels like it could become big brother watching all of us, the other side is about security. It is a very slippery slope. Whatever I post on the Internet I assume is open for all to see. I do try to control my privacy settings. My priority is protecting my children. However, I do post their images. As they get older I will have to consider my children’s social media rights more.  I always assume that  law enforcement could access my phone. I actually equate it to the old white pages. Didn’t everyone look up their teachers and friends in the phone book to find out where they lived?

Here is a video from John Oliver Tonight about net neutrality:

In essence the point of the video is that it is important that the internet stays neutral and not become more of a “sponsored” space. In reality, my Facebook feed is already an eerily accurate sponsored space. And I would argue that schools are already biased to some degree as well. There are really only textbooks from a couple of publishers in most schools. When I have to make one accessible on the computer for a student who needs the book read out loud it is not an easy process. After we convert it to audio we need to pull a print version out of the classroom to make up for the audio one.  And if you walk on campus, you will see Coke (or is it Pepsi?)  machines everywhere. That being said, it is important for students of all socioeconomic classes to have equal access to the internet which is why net neutrality is important.