ALERT! ALERT! Google Alert

To begin with, I was rather objectionable to setting up Google Alerts – I mean, really, I get enough emails everyday that whilst I would love to learn more about the things that I find interesting or valuable to research I did not feel that it was worth my time to sift through emails.

However, it is a course requirement, so I did it, and whilst vague were my subjects, they provided interesting results all the same…

Google Alert1: Modern Family – A popular American TV show with a witty and hilarious script. One of the favourite shows in my house.

Google Alert2: Steven Miesel – A controversial fashion photographer who has produced amazing spreads for Vogue Italia addressing  serious issues in a rather debatable way.

Google Alert3: Marieke Hardy – A Melbourne writer. I one day aspire to write as well as she, take a peek at her blog here.

Google Alert4: Photography – Broad I know, but what the hell I need the subject credit, I thought to myself.

Interestingly enough, it was Alert 4 that provided me with relevant and interesting information. As I am currently writing an essay on the individual experience that is digital photography  and the way photography has changed since the digital age I was intrigued by this post highlighting some great mobile photography in Chattanooga.

The concept that you can take a photo pretty much anywhere, anytime is fantastic and so very different. It marks a significant change in our thinking around photography and what we can take photos of.

To quote Susan Sontag, we have been "emancipated from the tripod" 

Photography has become spontaneous – we can photograph that great meal we are served for lunch at that trendy hipster cafe and make sure everyone else knows how cool we are – I’m referring to you Instagram-ers. We can capture the rainbow,  more importantly we can capture the mood of a moment in an instant. And, we can use filters to enhance the images (and when I say enhance, I mean intensify the intended mood – not make it vintage like an old style polaroid , go buy some real polaroid film if that’s what you’re after – it’s being made again!!).  As photographer Claire Wood writes in the article, “I usually prefer my iPhone/Instagram [app] photos over my big DSLR camera because these are the real snapshots of life”.


I think that in a professional situation Google Alerts would come in handy to monitor posts about companies and individuals. For the mean time, I’d rather not have to deal with the extra emails and instead go searching for things when I feel like reading the last thing Marieke Hardy wrote.


Sharing is Caring

In dipping my toes into tertiary education I have gained a great deal of knowledge around using different programs and working collaboratively with others.

Google Docs is something I really only discovered about half way through the year and it would have to be one of the most useful things I have found whilst at university. It enables documents, spreadsheets, images and more to be uploaded, edited and shared via Google Drive, and all that is needed is a Google account – who doesn’t have one of them these days…

It makes group work easy, and more importantly it means that it doesn’t matter that every now and then I can’t be bothered lugging my laptop to uni – I can just work from my Google Drive.

(What about a USB a hear you ask? A USB, I had one of those, a while ago … think it’s in my room somewhere now…)

In using Google Docs to edit the Media Students Charter I was able to gain inspiration from the work of others, and come up with some edits that I feel make the responsibilities clearer, more personal yet it still remains a formal document. I think that it is important for students to be reminded that, in most instances, they are paying  for their education – so it is really well and truly worth putting in the time to attend lectures and tutes, actively engage with the materials and make the most of the three years.
I have also added in a suggestion about working professionally and collaboratively as I feel these are specifically relevant to the nature of the media degree. I believe it is important to seek out the best from those you work with and remember that one day you may even be asking them for a job.



One major problem with shared documents, just like the shared media server that all can use in the Editing Suites – all can use it, all can modify, and, if someone was to bear a grudge, they could easily delete it all