eSophie: A Blog Experiment

My name is Sophie and I research everything.

Archive for March 2011

Journalism: From Fourth to Fifth Estate

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Despite what has been said about the death of journalism, (excuse me, the death of “real” journalism) I say journalism is still alive and definitely evolving. Sure, there are amateur bloggers (like myself, of course) and then there are real journalists who went to school for journalism –those who know all about the fourth estate, a word I have never heard of until this week when I stumbled upon Jeff Hutson‘s blog.

Journalism, or the Fourth Estate, is the medium between the corporate world with its shiny executives and the less fancy businesses with their average Joe customers. It is not my area of expertise but I think I can understand how important the Fourth Estate is. Even as a member of the “young generation” who was pretty much “born into” the world of fast-paced events, instant access (which is supposed to substitute for “instant gratification” by the way), personalized newsfeeds, tweets, and one-click-share-all hype, I can understand that Journalism is evolving into a Fifth Estate as described by Geoff Livingston on his blog.

Let’s “talk” about it. (I think “blogging” is more “conversational” than journalism. You’ll see what I’m talking about.)

© The Camping Journal

I’m going to “describe” the stereotypical “journalist” and “blogger” (if they even exist anymore.) But here’s my disclaimer: Just because I am describing these two professionals (or hobbyists), it must not be assumed that these are my personal views of journalists and bloggers. And I said “professionals or hobbyists” because I consider truly passionate journalists to be “hobbyists” and credible bloggers who share their knowledge about their field as “professionals.” But that’s just my opinion.

With that said, “journalists” are professionals. “Journalists” are also instigators. They stretch ideas, paint the wrong pictures, filter content, and distort the truth trying to sway opinions. (Gee, I sound like a clever journalist right there in that previous sentence! Oh dear…)

Now let’s switch roles. “Bloggers” are amateurs. We have no focus. We babble, rant, ramble, write about anything we want. Trust me. And we do it just because! (Probably because we spend time thinking about too many things, get frustrated that the world never offers an opportunity to share those thoughts with others; so then, we blog!) Or talk to ourselves via some text on a computer screen. It gives us sanity. Or else you’ll see bloggers “blogging” in real life (more like rambling) at work, at home, in the bathroom, at the grocer, at the post office, in our cars during rush hour, anywhere else you can imagine. (Yes, guys, I talk to myself part-time.) Kidding. Maybe just a quarter of the time…

Crazy, yes. Professional? Er, questionable. Ramblers, sometimes. Credible? Depends. But bloggers are honest. We base our knowledge on our personal experiences (which is why we can skip the interviews with others.) Bloggers speak for no one but ourselves. We do not interview others and “paraphrase” or “summarize”  others’ thoughts. We can share thoughts (however) with more-recognized individuals. And bloggers definitely gain a plethora of information from numerous sources that they encounter. (Whether or not those sources are credible is another issue).

So, “bloggers”, “journalists”, “bloggists”, “j-loggers” even! Whatever you want to call it, decent writers are decent story-tellers who tell real stories about the real world (and, yes, I think the internet is a real world whether we like it or not).

And P.S. I took “Creative Writing” and “Psychology” in high school but I wouldn’t dare say that I went to school to study Journalism.


Written by eSophieThinks

March 26, 2011 at 5:32 PM

World’s Hottest News Anchor? Mélissa Theuriau

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Mélissa Theuriau, French reporter

Good news or bad, I wouldn’t mind hearing it from Mélissa Theuriau. I would suggest a link to Zone Interdite on French TV where she is currently the co-editor in chief and anchor (but it’s in French).

Okay, I know it’s not the most “interesting” thing to blog about but… I had a long week and it’s almost Friday!

Mélissa Theuriau is officially the hottest journalist and news anchor in my book! (I hope my blog can be translated into French easily. Thanks, WordPress!)

If you’re looking for more info about Mélissa Theuriau, she reports for the French news station M6.

I wonder how much persuasion power Mélissa has. It seems attractive people and sex appeal are hard to resist…

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March 24, 2011 at 3:59 PM

Facebook Friends for Sale: 37 cents each!

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So we all know that the average Facebook Fan costs about $1.07, according to Wall Street Journal’s Facebook guru Geoffrey Fowler. Actually, his professional title is Technology Reporter but I consider him to be the Wise Facebook Guru. (It’s a compliment, Geoffrey.) Can we call you Jeff for short if we promise to spell out “Geof” in our heads?

But what about the price of a Facebook Friend? Apparently, Burger King’s Marketing VP, Brian Gies, thinks that Facebook friends are worth less than $1.07. In a bold, somewhat humorous, and questionable ad campaign, Burger King offered one coupon per Facebook account if the loyal Facebook user could prove that he, she, (or even it in some cases if we consider zygotes to be sexless; I’ll explain in another post) could “sacrifice ten Facebook friends” for one free Whopper. That’s about 37 cents per Facebook friend (tyvm NY Times for doing the math for us.)

By the end of the ad campaign, at least 234,000 Facebookers were de-friended, causing Facebook to de-friend BK’s “Whopper Sacrifice” ad campaign. And I’m sure it wasn’t because Facebook wanted a free Whopper.

Maybe I should set up a ‘Facebook Friend For Sale’ stand (that would also double as a lemonade stand). If I sell all my friends on Facebook… that’s 1,300+ times 37 cents each equals at least $481!

Written by eSophieThinks

March 23, 2011 at 9:36 PM

Wine in a bottle… in a box… now in an Astrapouch

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© Indulge Wines

Wine in a pouch? Yes, why not!

In an effort to be more eco-friendly (and fun at the same time), Indulge Wines offers wine in a non-traditional pacakaging called Astrapouches! You can probably guess why it’s called “astrapouches” but let’s look at the details I found on SlashFood:

  1. It’s still good after 30 days of opening so it won’t go to waste.
  2. It requires less fossil fuels to transport the wine because it’s not in heavy bottles that require “cushioning” and “securing”, gosh darn it.
  3. Only two percent of the product is its weight so the remaining 98% is the wine! Yay! Finally, consumers can actually get what they pay for. Think about boxed wines (which is misleading actually since they’re technically in a bag that is in a box! Huh? Yeah…) But whatever the case, all that cardboard and paper is unnecessary.

After reading about Indulge Wines’ astrapouches, I quickly scrambled to their website to find more info. Apparently, their astrapouches are #1 (amongst whom I wonder) in having the lowest carbon footprint, lowest land fill pressure by weight, and require the lowest energy input to chill….

Indulge Wines (if you’re reading this)… I think your idea is super-cool, super-fun, and super-eco-friendly so kudos to you. Or would you prefer cheese and crackers instead? (Or grapes even?)

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March 23, 2011 at 6:38 PM

Dear Spammers: You look quite Spammy today.

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I was appalled when I came across this “blog” called SaveMoreShareMore that offered Minute Maid coupons via blog. They also invited readers to visit them on Facebook.
I quickly reported it to WordPress as spam without hesitation…(although I am quite thirsty for some orange juice; maybe I’ll grab some now).

Written by eSophieThinks

March 22, 2011 at 3:57 PM

110 Billion Minutes of Friending, FBing, Tweeting, Tagging, GameVilling, and Stalking

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According to a June 2010 Nielson study, online users spend 110 billion minutes on Social Networking Sites and Blogs. That’s one in every 4.5 minutes (or 22% of all online time). No wonder I in

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March 22, 2011 at 2:20 PM

Outrageous Food News: Lawsuits & Gunfires

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© J. Brockman

I think I’m officially afraid of going to Fast Foods and Chains. Check out these headlines:

Man Exchanges Gunfire With Cops Over Price of Burritos
“Think Outside the Bun” … and Run For Your Life! Sadly, today’s economy has skyrocketed the value of Beefy Crunch Burritos from 99 cents to $1.49. (Although, it’s kinda sorta understood by average customers that Taco Bell’s Beefy Crunch Burritos were only 99 cents for a limited time. Um, yes, sir! Taco Bell is legally allowed to offer promotions to their customers.) But apparently, not everyone agrees that promotions should be “limited time offers.” And one man from San Antonio thought it’s so absurd that he confronted the issue at gunpoint (for four hours!) after he ordered seven burritos and found out that the 99 cent Beefy Crunch Burritos promotion ended. Police said that the suspect fled away to a Burger King in his Mitsubishi Eclipse… I think Donald Trump should address this issue if he’s going to run for Presidency.

© Dennis Mojado

Starbucks Suit Dispute: Scalding Cup Crash or Just a Dumb Rash?

Really? A lawsuit? 36 year-old doctor and “professional model”, Riffat Qureshi, sues Starbucks because of a scalded tummy. (Ouch, not so hot for a professional model. I wonder if she does lingerie/swimsuit or is she strictly a professional tummy model?) Anyway, the doctor-slash-model claimed that a Starbucks barista slid a cup of boiling hot Starbucksness (actually, I think it was just plain hot water) across the counter and it splashed at her… The last time I checked, my Starbucks coffee was somewhere between lukewarm and been-sitting-in-a-hot-pot warm. But definitely not scalding hot boiling. Whatever the case, I think it’s smart to assume that hot drinks are, umm… hot!

Shh, I think I’m going to gawk at her when I see her at Starbucks!

Written by eSophieThinks

March 21, 2011 at 5:02 PM

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