From Hatred to Acceptance: How I Learned to Love Instagram Albums – Anaisa Kalita

Post by @UNT_Terry using a multiple photo upload of the BIG Event

The older I get, the more I realize I really, really hate change. In a world that is constantly changing due to the effects of growing technology and the world’s desire to connect, this can be very difficult. When I heard about the new update on Instagram that allows you to post more than one photo at a time, I was instantly annoyed.

“We already have photo albums on facebook, and can post a whole day’s worth of content on snapchat,” I complained, “why do we need yet another platform to allow us to fuel our vanity?” Even though I know I spend far too much time pondering which photo has the lighting and colors just right, it never occurred to me that there would be benefit to updating Instagram so that I didn’t have to make that choice.

When I first heard about Instagram’s latest big update, I rolled my eyes and thought about the albums of selfies and fake candids I would have to scroll through. A large part of me thought about the friends I have who are members of greek life and how I would now have to sit through not just one but four photos of them claiming their Big is perfect like they didn’t get matched up like a blind date. However, recently I have come to realize the benefit that Insta-albums could have for brands. I mean, I already knew that sponsored posts could post multiple photos, and I accepted that things made sense like that, but I completely forgot about smaller organizations in communities or at UNT that could benefit from this.

This weekend was the BIG Event my organization, The Terry Scholars of North Texas, participated. Our current PR chair posted 4 photos of people participating today, and for the first time since the launch I realized this might not be such a horrible idea after all.

Don’t Believe Everything…

By: Gabriela C. Perez


When it comes to social media, everything is not what is seems. I set out to prove this by conducting a little social experiment of my own. Last week, a Harry Potter movie marathon turned into group temporary tattoos. You know the ones, where a little water will help you go from innocent kid to badass in about 20 seconds. The one I chose actually looked kind of real after removing the piece of paper, so I decided to take it a step further. A little bit of plastic wrap and a Snapchat post later, the wheels were in motion as I waited to see if anyone would actually fall for it.

Picture Credit: Snapchat


Like they say, if you snap it, they will come.


Less than five minutes later, messages started rolling in, most of them saying how much they loved the newest edition to my body. Part of me wanted to tell them it was fake, the other half wanted to wait and see how many people would actually be fooled. I chose the latter decision. By the end of the night, about 12 people had congratulated or asked me about the tattoo.

Despite the fun and games, anyone who TRULY knows me, knows I’m deathly afraid of needles. Like “run out of the room during a doctor’s appointment because it was time for my flu shot” afraid. I’m serious, I hid in the bathroom.

However, this serves as a lesson to not believe everything you see on social media. Most of the time, people are posting what they want you to see, in hopes of making their followers believe that their life is so much more glorious and interesting than it actually is. We’re all guilty of it; posting pictures of videos from the fun-filled Wal-Mart trips, the exotic looking food you just ate, the zoomed-in concert videos. Social media helps us to create this alternate persona and gives us the option to choose what parts of our lives we’re willing to let others see.

What we must remember is to see between the lines and not believe every little thing someone posts about. News has shown us this time and time again. We live in an age where it’s important to fact-check everything. Or get caught in someone else’s fake Snapchat scheme. It’s up to you.



Davis, Wynne. “Fake Or Real? How To Self-Check The News And Get The Facts.” NPR. NPR, 05 Dec. 2016. Web. 19 Mar. 2017. 

Zolfagharifard, Ellie. “Welcome to Fakebook: More than 75% of people admit to making their lives seem more exciting on social media.” Daily Mail Online. Associated Newspapers, 01 Feb. 2016. Web. 19 Mar. 2017.


#socialadvocacy; Why Social Movements Have Gone Digital

By: Lauren Oliver



One of the many ways the rapidly evolving technological age has shaped our society is by greatly impacting the landscape of activism and social advocacy. While the image that comes to many people’s minds with the word ‘activism’ are images from the Civil Rights Movement and the protests of 1960’s American, in reality activism today looks drastically different. With the high amount of engagement from users on social media platforms, it’s not surprising that those platforms would eventually serve the purpose of connecting like minded individuals.

Before the Digital Age, activists who were passionate about the same issue were likely only in touch with one another if they were geographically close to one another. Now, passionate activists can connect from any distance simply by using social media. Though some people write off online activism, it’s importance is real and tangible. 21 Hashtags the Changed Feminism explained the evolution of hashtags for social movements and demonstrated that over time hashtags have become safe havens for oppressed people and legitimate platforms for activists. The significance of being able to connect with thousands or millions of other people who have had a similar experience or have similar beliefs to you is undeniable. Through these online safe spaces many have found a voice and a community that they didn’t have before.

Of course digital advocacy does have its opponents. In Anti-Hashtivism the writer expresses frustrations about the ‘0 to 60’ environment that online social advocacy can sometimes be guilty of. While it’s true that social media makes it easier to create an echo chamber for yourself, the benefit outweighs the negative aspects. Overall digital innovation and social media have created necessary safe spaces for thousands of people who had never felt a sense of community.


Ezekiel Elliot the latest example of the power of social media

By Cesar Valdes

The power of social media has been something evident since its existence.

Information lives on the internet, good or bad.

Social media can be used to benefit oneself, or it can be used to negatively impact the image of a person.

Such was the case for Dallas Cowboys All-Pro running back Ezekiel Elliot.

Over the weekend, Elliot was spotted at the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Dallas. But his presence was capitalized by a controversial incident that soon spread like wildfire on Twitter.

Elliot, seen drinking and standing next to a woman gesturing towards him, pulled down her shirt all while being recorded. The video spread quickly throughout Twitter, and so did criticism.

If this were another player, say one from the Jacksonville Jaguars, then this probably wouldn’t have been such a big deal. Anyways, one kicker from the Giants was accused of physically harming his wife and didn’t receive much punishment publicly, as displayed by a mere one game suspension and his non-immediate dismissal from the team.

What is different for Elliot than other players is that he plays for one of the most recognizable sport franchises in the Dallas Cowboys. Everything he does is going to be looked under a microscope.

What happens next for Elliot will ultimately rely upon how the public feels about what he did. We learned from the Ray Rice case that commissioner Roger Goodell will react to public criticism

So far, much of the criticism on Twitter and other social media outlets has been nothing short of negative.

What may or may not happen to Elliot is an example for everyone, not just notable people or head figures, to act as if they had a camera pointed at them at all times. It is almost rare for any incident not to be recorded, either by photographs or video, and not be posted on a social media outlet.

If Elliot goes through this without any punishment from the NFL that doesn’t necessarily mean he is off the hook. This mishap still puts a blemish on his image. He could potentially lose endorsements or not receive some new ones because of this.

Elliot has just become the latest example of the bad side of social media.



Featured image: TMZ Sports

South by Social Media

By: Connor Gray

I’ve never really considered Spring Break to be a time to actually go somewhere. Usually I just head back home for the week because I don’t deserve a nice trip somewhere. This year that completely changed thanks to my job with the Denton Convention and Visitors Bureau. My grand-boss’s decision this year was to bring me along with some of my co-workers to South by Southwest for the Interactive portion of the festival. For those that don’t know South by Southwest (usually SXSW) is a conference/festival consisting of three different tracks of interactive, film, and music. While each section provides different opportunities per pass, my interactive pass allowed me to go to career building workshosp with extreme professionals in my field alongside information on areas that I knew nothing about.

Here are some of the highlights of some of SXSW sessions that I’ve been to so far as far as social media is concerned:

Levi Strauss and the Internet of Things:

On an advertising level, this was an amazing opportunity. The session consisted of Ivan Poupyrev, a technical program lead at Google, and Paul Dillinger, a vice president of Levi Straus & Company. They primarily focused on a new line of clothing that they partnered together to work on that not only paired with your phone but to the Internet automatically. A person could actually swipe a pad on their pants or a press a button on their jacket to send a tweet. It was amazing and while the technology may not be immediately taken advantage of, it’s definitely a new component to the fashion market. What’s more is that I thought it was crazy that of all companies, Levi’s and Google partnered up.

Atlas Obscura Author:

Ella Morton, author of the hit blog and travel book, spoke on how people have utilized their website with social media to promote hidden places on the map. I’m an avid fan of her book and it was cool to see how different platforms lended to the submission to the actual travel spots.

New York Times Editor (with Vox Reporter):

The executive editor of the New York times sat with Jim Rutenberg to address the current state of the news paper medium. He discuses how Donald Trump and social media reactions made “news great again” While a lot of the discussion focused on politics, I pulled a lot of information on how to create content that is actually memorable on a website and how to share that to specific platforms.


Snapchat for Business:

Interestingly enough this was one of the only sessions that involved Snapchat at all, but it was still extremely valuable. Companies are having an increasingly difficult time trying to utilize Snapchat like their other platforms. People are not necessarily more hesitant to use it, but the businesses don’t necessarily know how to use them efficiently. Not unlike other platforms, the panelists emphasize the need for constant content growing out to build an organic relationship with their viewers.

Brand Booths:

Nearly every company of prominence has sent out a major brand ambassador to run an event here, and social has played a major component to that in general. Esurance has been giving mass giveaways but the only way to find them is through their Snapchat story. Budlight and Canvas both generated personalized gifs of yourself to tweet out with their logos slathered all over them. Nat Geo let you Twitter DM a selfie that would then be drawn by a robot on a chalkboard that utilized Einstein formulas on the actual selfie. The list could go on forever because most of these brands’ driving motivation was to get you to follow them on their platforms and interact with them.

The Biden Cancer Foundation:

This was definitely at the top of my list. I waited hours in the morning and afternoon to not only get a wristband to go, but to actually get a good seat. This man is a personal hero of mine and brought up some essential points about cancer research that even included social media in its own way. One major point he looked at was how badly the access to information there was for both patients and researchers alike. Researchers had a very difficult time pulling secondary research in this field. With Biden’s foundation, they’ve been working digital cloud servers like Amazon and Silicone valley innovators to generate website and social networks to change the culture of the cancer treatment system in America. This speech was intense, powerful and managed to matter to just about any field of study, including social media.

Overall, the conference was an amazing opportunity that has affected my life in more ways than one. Social media proves to be a vital contributing to the festival. Whether it was the hashtags and Snapcodes plastering every inch of venues or a panel based on generating communities on Twitter.


Oh also, I shook Biden’s hand.




  1. (2017, March 12). The Urgency of Now: Launching the Biden Cancer Initiative – SXSW 2017. Retrieved March 13, 2017, from


Soper, T. (2017, March 12). New York Times editor explains how Donald Trump made journalism great again. Retrieved March 13, 2017, from


SXSW Schedule Overview | SXSW Conference & Festivals. (n.d.). Retrieved March 13, 2017, from

Replacing the Old News Channels with Social Media

By Parker Cantu

Many people have decided that paying for TV isn’t necessary and in a lot of cases simply not worth it. 1 in 5 people have decided to go without cable, including myself. I never use it and when I do, I could more than likely be watching the same thing on a streaming service such as Netflix or Hulu and save myself a lot of money.

So what about news then? Where do you get it? Well, social media has got you covered whether you have TV or not, and there are plenty of options.


Most news stations nowadays have at least a Facebook page, if not also a twitter page. For example, the Dallas Morning News posts on their Facebook page just about all day. Reddit has subreddits for world news, country news, and most major cities that include news articles, and you can actually combine multiple subreddits into one, called multireddits, to create one place for you to go through the posts from all of the subreddits you want.

Okay, but why use the internet for your news when you can just watch the news? Good question, and there are some good reasons.

You don’t have to “catch” the internet.

The internet will always be there waiting for you. You don’t have to get up early to get your daily morning news and glue yourself to the couch for thirty minutes to an hour when it’s all available out there on the internet.

You can get multiple sources at once.

Let’s face it: all sources of media have a bias one way or another. That doesn’t mean they’re not good sources, but it’s nice to have multiple viewpoints on a topic. Just in case.

Getting more information is easy.

If you’re using social media to get your news, then you’re already using a computer or a smartphone (or maybe even a smart TV). These are obviously all connected to the internet and make fact checking and follow-up research super easy and quick to do.

So there you have it. Go like your local news station on Facebook.

Photo Credit:


The Essentials of PR and SEO in Real Estate

By Mackenzy Hand


A few choice essentials in both public relations and the concept of search engine optimization go hand in hand with real estate and real estate marketing plans. It is easy to say that it’s all about who you know when it comes to bringing in leads, and that may be true with some of your pre-existing clientele. But what about new leads? Yes, you as the agent want to get to a point where the majority of your business is referral based, but it’s never a bad idea to rake in outside sources. That’s where PR and SEO come in.

The main thing that you want to concern yourself with when it comes to PR is gaining exposure for your real estate brand. Everyone needs a little help now and then. Generally, what we mean by “help” in the real estate world is getting referrals from other agents. What you can do to help your business and your brand even more is to enlist other professionals such as TV and radio personalities, bloggers, social media analysts, and other professionals in the real estate field, as well as publications like local, state, or national magazines, newspapers, and blogs to aid in making your brand more recognizable.

What is important to understand is that no one knows about your brand until you bring it to them. Where PR is applicable in this situation is bringing your brand into the right light. You may be interviewed by a radio or TV personality where they ask you to yield some of your expertise live on the air, which will make prospective clientele more comfortable working with you. Someone might recognize your face from an article they read in their favorite magazine or local newspaper. Another important thing to remember is that PR is a two-way street. By helping you expand your brand, publications are helping themselves as well. The name recognition you will provide for them will lead to more traffic on their sites, which in turn leads to revenue. It’s a win win situation, and that is the power of public relations.

Brand start up: Machines building brand-word.            As mentioned before, SEO is another powerful tool in regards to a real estate marketing plan. Done properly, your advertising, social media strategies, and email marketing plans will help your website get found on SERPs (search engine results pages). The goal of SEO in real estate is to guide the right clients to your website and generate leads for your business. The main things you should be doing to increase your SEO are to blog good content regularly, advertise, advertise, advertise, build up your social media presence, and secure lots of links on other websites. The idea behind SEO is simple, but it does take time. However long it may take, I promise it will be worth it in the end. The thing to remember is that in being a real estate agent or broker, you aren’t just working for a business, you are your own brand. And in order to truly be successful, expansion of your brand is paramount. PR and SEO are the keys to successful brand expansion.

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