This is it

Ineffable (adjective): Something which cannot be expressed or described in words.

My name is Megan.

This is the first time I’ve updated my ‘about me’ since first semester in my first year of university. It is now my last semester of my last year of uni and as you may have guessed – things have changed.

At the start of my university life, I wanted to use my Communications degree to take me to work backstage in television or do a makeup artistry degree and then be a makeup artist for television. Right now, in July of 2017, I want to be a marketing coordinator for a company and work out ways to promote the brand in the best, most effective way. I know that this will take a lot of work and effort to work my way up but I’m extremely excited to take that journey.

This blog is a time capsule of my thoughts and feelings towards certain topics during my time at the University of Wollongong. I thought about deleting some posts but then realised that even though some posts are written better than others, they are all crucial in my development as a Comms and Media graduate and I am proud of them all.

So please, take your time and peruse through my blog posts, good and bad. Feel free to comment and tell me how your thoughts and opinions are similar or dissimilar to mine.

Enjoy x

 

 

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I can because I’m human.

One of my earliest memories of reading is reading stories about the circus. The story would tell the tale of a circus coming to town and all the kids lining the streets as a massive parade of dancers, mimes, clowns, and of course, animals would be on spectacle for the crowd to adore. And so, for a very long time as a child, I wanted to go to the circus to get a giant box of popcorn and a massive soft drink and ‘ooh’ and ‘ahh’ at all of the amazing people and animals doing tricks to entertain the audience.

It wasn’t until I was fifteen or sixteen that I realised the harsh, sad and torturous reality that circus’ really are for the animals. Animals such as elephants are stolen from their mothers as babies using ropes, chains, electric prods, and bull hooks and and each of their legs are often tied to make sure they can’t move or run away. Animals are literally tortured for the enjoyment and entertainment of people who are ignorant to their pain.

ringling-CEC-pics-010-small

Baby elephant taken away from its mother to be trained in the circus 

So why does this happen? Why do we think its okay for animals to be taken away from their mothers – who they’re dependant on – and train them for our own entertainment? If this happened to a human child there would be countless media broadcasts, debates on panel shows and the people who kidnapped the child would be put in jail for a lifetime. How come it’s okay when the child isn’t human?

Speciesism. 

‘Speciesism’ is the idea that being human is a good enough reason for human animals to have greater moral rights than non-human animals (BBC, 2014). Speciesism isn’t found just in the circus. It’s literally everywhere and we can’t escape it. One may argue that the reason we take animals and train them is because we are intellectual creatures, whereas dogs, elephants, lions and orcas are not; but don’t each of these animals have something humans don’t? Orcas have size and are able to swim underwater – does this not make the orca then, superior to a human?

In the documentary, Black Fish, it was made quite evident that orcas or ‘killer whales’ as they are labelled, are often not violent creatures. They are peaceful animals that live with the idea of family. However, because of humans taking advantage of their own intellect and power, these poor creatures were being held captive for entertainment. It’s no wonder Tilikum turned on his trainer and killed him. We hear stories of wives who, abused for many years, suddenly turn on their husbands and kill them (known as battered woman syndrome) So what makes an animal different?

It is a conflicting opinion that we keep animals as pets such as cats, dogs, rabbits, and even snakes. Is this not speciesism? I myself, have a dog named Charlie who is the best thing in the world (in my humble opinion). However, sometimes I wonder if we are really doing right by him. We’ve taught him how to sit, lie down and even the meaning of the words “go to toilet” and “drink water”. Is this just us abusing our power as intellectual beings?

I guess it really comes down to how sentient we perceive an animal to be. We often don’t think twice about killing a fly or a mosquito, however, I think everyone would definitely oppose killing someone’s dog – based on their ability to think and feel things. We anthropomorphise our animals and pets, and I don’t think this is necessarily a bad thing, however, we need to get rid of the belief that just because humans can think and analyse situations differently to other species, we are superior.

What are your thoughts on speciesism?  Let me know below!

 

Megan.

 

Sticking it to the man … with selfies.

We live in a culture of selfies. We live in a culture of narcissism. We live in a culture of shame. It’s crazy to think that those three things are linked. What does my selfie have to do with being narcissistic? Why is my selfie being used as a way to bring shame on myself and others?

I would like to take the time to define for you all what exactly a selfie is. A selfie is a “self-generated digital photographic portraiture, spread primarily via social media” (Seft, Baym, 2015). In laymen’s terms, it is a photo you take of yourself and upload it to social media. I actually quite enjoy taking selfies – before a night out, when I do my makeup particularly nicely or just when I want to capture a moment to remember it.

However, I hardly ever post my selfies on social media.

It’s not like there’s not photos of myself on my social media, it’s just that I don’t feel confident enough to post photos of myself that weren’t candidly taken by someone else because I feel like people will think I am narcissistic and self-obsessed. So then why do I take selfies if I’m not sharing them with the world?

  1. To celebrate individualism. 

Instagram is an amazing photo sharing platform, however, there is a certain ‘aesthetic’ that one needs to fit into. Bold eyebrows, long eyelashes, those Kylie Jenner lips, strong contouring … all things the average girl is not able to achieve normally. These images are basically shoved down our throats through marketing and social media and it is hard to not be influenced and impacted by it.

I feel as though women (or men, for that matter) don’t get the right to define what makes them beautiful. John Berger (1970) states “Men look at women. Women watch themselves being looked at.” Where is the lie?! As women in the 21st century, we are told what to wear, eat, and what accessories we need to be conveyed as beautiful or successful.

I take selfies to celebrate that sometimes my hair looks funny and my eyebrows are uneven. I don’t look like those girls on Instagram and that’s okay. Taking selfies and not putting them on social media makes me feel like I have defined my own standard of beauty and that’s empowering.

2. Identity. 

When I take a selfie of myself, it’s exactly that – it’s me. I take photos to celebrate that I have imperfections and flaws, but that’s what makes up my identity. Dr Terri Apter from Cambridge University describes the action of taking selfies as “a kind of self-definition.”

I take selfies with my piano, because I love playing piano and music and so that defines part of myself. I take selfies with my dog, because he’s cute and I adore him.

Selfies help define our identity, and it’s not narcissistic to do this.

3. To stick it to the man. 

Last year, the ‘famous for being famous’ Kim Kardashian posted a couple a selfies where she was completely nude. The patriarch-driven media went crazy, as seen here, here and here.

Kim-Kardashian

Why is it such a big deal? When I look at these photos, I see a confident woman that isn’t afraid of what the media thinks. I think it’s something to aspire to – being that comfortable in your own skin. I’m not saying we should post photos of ourselves nude, but we should follow Kim’s example and just not care what anyone thinks.

Our bodies are our own, and it should not be up to anyone else but ourselves to decide what we do with them.

….

To wrap up, I feel like selfies are not as big of a deal as people make them out to be. Our generation is not a narcissistic one, it’s one that recognises the need for self-love and acknowledging our flaws but accepting them as a part of our identities. There is no shame in taking photos of yourself and posting them, or not posting them.

So go stick it to the man, take photos of yourself when you look good, ugly and everything in between!

Megan.

References
Senft, Theresa. Baym, Nancy. 2015 “What Does the Selfie Say? Investigating a Global Phenomenon.” 

Ogden, Monica. 2016. “Why I Selfie | Fistful of Feminism”

 

Porn for the upper middle class

 

Having been to India four times in my life so far, its safe to say that I have seen my fair share of poverty, homelessness and famine. It’s definitely not something I enjoy. Having twelve year old girls run after you with a newborn baby on their hips begging for money is quite a slap in the face.

However, if I saw a headline like “32 images of poverty in India that will shock you!” I think I would click on it and read the article out of curiosity. We are flooded with images of the poor, homeless and starving every day of our lives. If you turn on any news programme, its easy to see the types of stories the media focus on. So if we aren’t okay with seeing these images in person, why are we okay with seeing it on our screens?

The answer: poverty porn.

To my understanding, poverty porn is the portrayal of crude images and videos of people that are suffering in order to generate interest or a response in their audience.

Poverty porn is not okay. 

While some may argue that it brings attention and light to the issue, it also empowers the wrong people. Poverty porn makes heavy and difficult situations seem easily fixable with the help of the public. Poverty porn creates the allusion that the people in these situations are lazy and able to get out of their strife but can’t be bothered to. In the SBS series Struggle Street, the residents of Mount Druitt are depicted as people who are uneducated, apathetic and lazy, because “That’s how they do it in Mount Druitt.”

While discussing this topic in class, it became clear that this is not actually what Mount Druitt is like … it’s a suburb just like any other and one that has flaws (just like most societies). The poverty porn shown on the documentary misinterprets those living in that area and labels them all as drug addicts, unemployed and poor. It exaggerates stereotypes, and for a ‘documentary’ – something that should be educational and informative – it creates an almost satirical and parodical programme that is more entertaining than educational.

Poverty porn teaches those in the situations of poverty that they are helpless and only benefit on the charity of those who are in a better situation and those who think they are helping.

I believe that poverty porn doesn’t really benefit our society as it leads to charity, not actually taking action and trying to change the world we live in. Poverty porn fails to make us realise the deeper issues of poverty.

The worst thing about poverty porn, is that it actually works.

During my schooling years, I used to participate in the 40 hour famine and it was a really fun and difficult challenge where you would not eat food from a Friday night to the next Sunday morning. I mostly did it because of the images and videos we were shown at school to get us involved – after the challenge had ended I stopped trying to raise funds and awareness for those less fortunate than myself.

So why do we buy into it? Why do we, as people who aren’t necessarily trying to keep our heads above the water of unemployment and poverty, love poverty porn?

I believe it is because we want to help; that we think that by just donating $5, we can really change the course of someone’s life … and maybe we can, but the media using those images to exploit us just for one small act of charity is not okay. I believe we should be aiming to be activists, not just one-time donors.

Megan.

 

So do smartphones bring people closer?

To further my understanding on whether smartphones connect or disconnect others, I turned to a TED talk on smartphone addiction. The talk discusses our constant use of our smartphones, stating that we check our phones 110 times every day. Watch it here.

Through secondary and primary research I really believe that the age of smartphones has created multiple new pathways to communicate with others. With the ability to take photos, videos and voice recordings and send them to others instantly as well as being able to interact through social media wherever you go, smartphones have increased the communications with others. Whilst the general consensus for using smartphones makes the user seem ‘antisocial’, it seems as though it is the opposite to this, that smartphones are making people overly social.

The problem arises when the use of a smartphone becomes a barrier when interacting with someone face to face. The problem of spatial unawareness takes place and the use of the smartphone can be taken to a space of Facebook while sitting in a cafe catching up with an old friend.

Smartphones do bring people together – in a virtual sense, however, the smartphone is a barrier in the physical sense for bringing people together.

Megan.

Smartphones – helping or hindering?

To further engage with the “audience” side of the subject, I decided to also conduct a few interviews to find the relationship between the spatial nature of using smartphones. When we are using our smartphones in a public space, physically we are in that public space but mentally we could be talking to a friend who lives on the other side of the world or beating a high score on Candy Crush.

These focus study questions were designed to be answered by people of various generations and designed so that the person being interviewed could answer and elaborate on their experiences with smartphones.

The questions:

  1. How old were you when you first got a phone?
  2. Do you find that your phone usage has increased with smartphones?
  3. How often do you use your phone when you’re with someone?
  4. Do you find it easier to connect with someone face to face?

 

The participants’ age ranged from 12-50 in order to get a well rounded idea of the spatial nature of using smartphones to connect with one another.

Here are the results

How old were you when you first got a phone?

Darcy (17): I was 12 when I first got a phone. It was a Nokia slide phone, that was my mum’s old phone. Since then, every two years or so I get an iPhone from my mum when she starts a new contract. I’ve gone from iPhone 4, to 5, to 5c.

Edward (19): I was 12 years old. Some people I knew got phones the year before I did, but many got them around the same time, as I had just started high school. My phone was a lot more basic than a lot of other phones at the time though.

Melissa (24): I was in year 6 when I got my first phone. I remember it being such a novelty because I was one of the first people in my grade to get one. I only got one so early so my parents could call me on it, it never had any credit or anything. It was one of those old Nokia brick phones with old- school snake. Since then, every few years I upgrade my phone, I have a Nexus 5 now.

Michael (51): I was actually 29 when I first got a mobile phone. I didn’t really see the need for it because we had a landline in our house. My first phone was a classic Nokia which I used for many years. I now use a Samsung S4

Jessica (12): I’ve only just gotten my phone this year – it’s an iPhone 4s, my mum’s old one. All of my friends have iPhones or Samsung equivalents.

Do you find that your phone usage has increased with smartphones?

Darcy (17): Definitely. As more applications are released with more features my phone use has only increased. I use my phone for everything – taking photos, watching videos, listening to music and even as a flashlight.

Edward (19): Definitely. Being able to access social media and games from my phone has it made a very common way to kill time, and often just to feel ‘caught up’ on everything, even if it isn’t particularly important.

Melissa (24): Yes, my phone usage has definitely increased. Phones were only for communicating via text and phone calls when I first had a phone. I remember using a digital camera to take photos and then having to upload it on my computer to put it on Facebook. Now, phones have everything. Cameras on phones are now better than many of the digital cameras you can get. You also have internet and all these different apps so everything can be done from your phone, nothing else is needed.

Michael (51): Yes. As a person working in IT, most of my work can be done on my smartphone. I also have Facebook, so I can connect with people who I grew up with and this has increased my usage of my smartphone.

Jessica (12): I don’t know what it was like to not have a smartphone but I think I am pretty attached to my phone to do things like text my friends or Snapchat them. I mainly use my phone to check the time or to take photos.

How often do you use your phone when you’re with someone?

Darcy (17): I only use it to check the time, depending on the social situation. If we’re watching a movie or something I’ll probably use it a bit more.

Edward (19): Even just hearing a notification come through can lead me to spend the next five minutes on my phone, even if I am spending time one on one with someone. And when I am with a group where there isn’t much conversation happening, it is easy for me to justify pulling out my phone to start scrolling.

Melissa (24): I try not to use my phone when I’m with a friend, it’s a bad habit that I’ve found a lot of us have in this generation. However, if my friend is on their phone, I find that I can’t help but peak at my phone, just to check if anyone has messaged me etc.

Michael (51): I will only use it if there is an important or official phone call to be made.

Jessica (12): I don’t usually but my friends and I use it to talk to each other when we are together – like Snapchatting each other or using Instagram to message each other. I think it’s mainly for entertainment when I’m with my friends.

Do you find it easier to connect with someone face to face?

Darcy (17): It depends on the person. It’s easier to avoid awkward situations online with the option to take time to forge a reply and think of what to say with no pressure. If I’m more comfortable with someone I find it easier in person though.

Edward (19): Yes. Being face to face to someone allows you to get a sense of what they are really like, as a person’s personality is so much more than what they can say on a chat screen. You pick up little mannerisms and quirks, and how they react to certain things, and allows you to perceive things like their attitudes and emotions when you are with them face to face.

Melissa (24): I do find it easier to talk to someone face to face. Often, I find that I can’t be bothered typing out too much on my phone and so face to face conversation is a lot easier. However, I find with little things it can be easier to simply message someone – it’s definitely more time efficient

Michael (51): Definitely yes. Growing up in an era where there was no smartphones, or mobile phones in general, its definitely easier to connect face to face as there is a personal touch element too.

Jessica (12): I’m not sure. I like having conversations with people in person but it’s also a lot more fun to talk over Instagram or Snapchat them. I think it’s easier to understand what someone is trying to say when you’re with them face-to-face but it’s easier to just text them.

Summary

From interviewing this mix of people, it is evident that there are some similarities that run through each age group and the way they interact with the different spaces while using their smartphone. The way the participants used their smartphones while in the same space as their peers were highlighted through their age. The younger the participant, the easier it was for them to use their phone around others.

It is interesting to note the first phones of the participants. Most older people first had phones for the main use of calling/getting calls but the younger the person, the more tech-savvy their phone was (this could be due to technological advances). The age of smartphones has results in them upgrading from just a phone to call and text people to a phone that can check emails, take photos and search the web. This has resulted in them using their phones a lot more, several times a day to do tasks a computer would usually do.

The age of the participants also were conveyed when it came to using their smartphones in the presence of other people. The older people, such as Michael did not use their phone at all when with other people (only in an emergency), however, younger participants like Edward, Jessica and Darcy found it relatively easy to be distracted and be taken away (mentally) to another place.

The focus group created insights on the relationship between their smartphone and the spaces around them – the digital vs the real; it can be deduced that smartphones have both aided in connecting people face to face but also acted as a barrier for people connecting fully.

Let me know some of your answers to the questions above!

Megan

 

(Dis) Connected?

I’m a self-confessed phone addict.

I can’t go more than 10 minutes without wondering about the notifications that have popped up on my phone or the new memes that I might be missing out on and this is what really got me thinking when it came to finding a topic to base my digital project on. The advancement on mobile phones has increased rapidly over the past 10 years and smartphones seem to be getting smarter and smarter. New apps are released daily and it seems that the nature of social media is becoming more addictive.

In a previous blog post (which can be found here) I looked into the strange habit my generation has of taking photos of food and even using phones in the company of others. Reflecting on this, I realised how many times I actually took my phone out to talk to other people while in the company of others.

So do smartphones bring people closer together?

In today’s society 80% of adults own a smartphone. Smartphones are mobile devices which have similar functions to that of a computer. Mother Nature Network (MNN) highlights the incredible effect the devices have on us, stating

The idea that the natural place to find a computer is on a desk — let alone, before that, in a basement — will be long forgotten. Like the book, the clock and the internal combustion engine before it, the smartphone is changing the way people relate to each other and the world around them.

To further my understanding of this phenomena and to build a story, I plan to conduct a survey – which will be distributed to people from all generations; do interviews on focus members of the survey participants and also research further on the impact of smartphones and connecting (or disconnecting us with others)

If you have any thoughts, suggestions or ideas for how I could better construct my story, please let me know in the comments!

Megan

Blog review

Over the course of the semester, blogging for Media, Audience, and Place has been challenging but an often-rewarding task each week. Having to understand the topics presented well enough to be able to give examples and my own personal spin on the topic was sometimes difficult but also amazing when I noticed how the views on my blog would go up each time I uploaded a blog post. I’ve also had to redo the design of my blog to be more aesthetically pleasing as well as figuring out techniques and ways to make my blog more inviting to create a space that allows other people to feel comfortable to convey their own opinions as well.

During the semester, BCM240 has covered a lot of topics and a lot of ideas that were discussed were a bit confusing to begin with. In order to create a cohesive and easily understandable blog post, I needed to first do prior reading and research on the topic. The research included the recommended readings as well as watching YouTube videos on the topic and reading academic journals to gain a well rounded and well balanced perspective on the topic. I found that the topics that I had personal experience within were a lot easier to blog about (such as use of mobile phone photography in public) while topics that required interviews for second hand experience were harder to write about.

The majority of the feedback on my last assessment was positive – stating that my writing style was interesting and engaging and that there was inclusions of primary and secondary sources embedded within my writing. Additionally, there was positive feedback on the design of my blog – that it was easy to navigate, strong design elements, good value added and categories and tags. The only thing stated to improve on was to include links to sources that readers could use if they desired more information on the topic. I believe that the feedback was really helpful, as I needed to change the way the information was organised on my blog. 

The design of my blog was marked to be easy to navigate in the feedback given in the last assessment. However, as I continued to work on my blog and visit the page regularly, it became bland and uninteresting to look at due to the colour scheme and the theme in general. To combat this, I started looking for a better theme and I believe I have found one to interest users as well as still being easy to navigate and read the main blog posts of the page. I made the colour scheme bright so that visitors to the page instantly feel drawn to read the headings and furthermore the blog posts. Keeping my tweets on the side of the page was vital and I played around with adding my Instagram handle as well as posts at the bottom of the page, however, I found that this was distracting and did not add good value to the blog.

As mentioned previously, every time I posted a new blog post, I saw an increase in people visiting my blog as well as the number of likes (which grew with every upload). The only problem I saw with the number of views as well as likes I was getting was the lack of comments in which I was trying to get as well and additionally the static nature of my number of followers. To try to increase both the comments and my number of followers I started adding statements such as “Tell me what you think in the comments” or “Remember to follow for more posts”. This helped to remind people that these options were available, and while they haven’t seen much of an increase, I will continue to write these statements in my blog.

Another problem that I discovered throughout the duration of the semester was that sometimes my blog posts were not getting the readership that I wanted or needed to get views. There were a couple of methods that I think worked quite well. The first was adding multiple hashtags to attract the attention of people who were interested in the subject. For example, for my post on the use of mobile phones I used hashtags such as “mobile phones” and “privacy” as well as others to gain attention. Another method I used was manually sending out the link of my blog posts to friends and family so they could read it as well as share it to other people they knew who would also be interested. The final method I used was liking and commenting on other people’s blog posts so that not only would they see that I was interested in what they were posting but also so that they would be curious of the types of posts I was uploading and this slightly increased my readership.

The improvements that I made on my blog were mainly theme-related. I created a new theme and colour scheme as well as changed the way my posts were being shown. I also re-created the tabs for the previous subjects I have studied so that future employees or anyone interested can see a whole line of my posts instead of the posts from strictly this semester. Spending more time thinking of a catchy blog post title also drew more attention to my blog.

In conclusion, I believe that the quality of my blog has grown tremendously since starting this semester. I have learned about adding value to my blog as well as making posts that are worth reading and attractive to those who are interested in the topics written about.

Media to the ears

Sitting at my desk for a long time to do uni work and other boring tasks is literally the worst thing I can think of. I can’t think of anything worse to do than being trapped at a desk having to focus on something that I’m really not committed to.

Other boring things I never want to focus on include (but are not limited to):

  • Listening to someone show me a song that is from an artist I don’t care about and from a music genre I literally know nothing about
  • Listening to someone talk about an amazing TV show they’re watching
  • Having to do taxes (literally why?)
  • Making my bed

I’m sure I could name a lot more things that I hate focusing on and I never really saw this as a problem but after listening to this week’s lecture which talked about the forever dwindling attention span of humans, I am now concerned. I also thought about how music can either help or hinder the attention span of an individual depending on the genre.

So I conducted a little experiment.

I got 5 of my friends to do uni work and each of them played a different genre of music through headphones. These genres were classical, pop, rock, RnB and instrumental jazz. Additionally (to make concentrating even harder) I made them place their phones on the table beside them so they could see their notifications and messages from other people, but weren’t actually allowed to touch their phones due to the experiment being about attention spans and focus.

These are my findings:

  • The person who listened to classical music got the most work done and also touched their phone the least
  • The person who listened to pop got a little less work done but also touched their phone more
  • The person who listened to rock got hardly any work done (due to the high number of bpm) and also found themselves reaching for their phone more and replying to messages and checking notifications
  • The person who listened to RnB got a considerable amount of work done and surprisingly didn’t touch their phone as music as the person who listened to rock music
  • The person listening to jazz also got a considerable about of work done but also touched their phone quite a bit.

It’s a pretty curious thing to look at the relationship between music and the attention span of an individual. The phone being on the desk beside them also made it tempting to turn on the screen just to check if anyone had texted them. It was also interesting to note that the subjects of the experiment would sometimes turn their screen on to check if they had any new notifications even though they knew they didn’t (because their phone would either vibrate or make a noise).

The attention tests we did in class also opened my eyes to how short my attention span really is and the fact that I really need to be emotionally invested in something for it to have my attention for more than 10 seconds.

Tell me your thoughts on our dwindling attention span and how you lack in the focus needed to do simple tasks!

 

Is that Insta-worthy photo Insta-worth it?

screen-shot-2016-10-03-at-11-17-21-am

Since finishing school just over 2 years ago, my friends and I don’t have a lot of time to see each other, but when we do catch up, we love to do it over brunch (There’s just something satisfying about having a meal between breakfast and lunch).  I caught up with one of my school friends a couple of weeks ago. After ordering and talking about what was new in our lives, our food arrived. There is no better feeling than seeing your food arrive in a restaurant. And so, before eating our food, or even touching it, we both took out our phones to take a photo of it.

I can honestly say that one of the many joys of a 19 year old girl raised in the 21st century is going out for brunch and taking an Insta-worthy photo of your avocado toast and soy chai latte.

I didn’t find anything to be wrong with this until listening to the lecture. Using phones, no matter what the social situation is the norm. It almost feels weird to not have a face-to-face interaction with someone while not using your phone at some point. Even if you’re not getting any notifications or messages, if someone is using their phone around you, you feel obliged to pick yours up and aimlessly scroll through Facebook or send an ugly selfie over Snapchat.

But when does public phone usage become a problem?

When it comes to public photography in Australia, there aren’t many laws. Someone can take a photo of you in your house as long as they are standing on public property. Does this then mean that once you’re standing on public property that you are public property? Many times at nightclubs I’ve avoided being near the club’s photographer out of fear that my photo will be taken and put on Facebook for thousands of people to see the next day. I don’t think I’ve ever consented to having my photo taken at a club, yet it seems to be something that I’ve already given.

The subject in my feature image is one of my friends who had given me consent to take her photo (while she was taking a photo of the food) and after asking her if I could use her photo for my blog post she answered with “Hells yeah because I’m hella cute”. I don’t think she would have given me her consent if I was a stranger who had just taken a photo of her taking a photo of her food and then asked to upload it to my own website. There needs to be a level of trust between the photographer and their subject.

It’s a curious thing to wonder how many people at a nightclub would actually give consent to the photographer to not only take their photo but also upload it to a social media platform where hundreds and even thousands of strangers can look at their photo.

However, whilst there aren’t many laws in place, surely it’s just common courtesy to not take photos of people when they are in the privacy of their own home or just minding their own business in public. The next time I go to Snapchat someone doing something funny, I will definitely take into consideration Street Photographer rights as well as the individuals’ own privacy.

 

Word count: 558

Feature image: my own photography