Archives for posts with tag: Twitter

A month without my iPhone…

To make a suggestion such as this to those nearest me would get me laughed at. But this evening, I’ve considered it in all seriousness, and I’m going to do it.

Why, you ask?

The latest internet craze has been a spoken word film called “Look Up”. A poem told by a guy in his twenties about technology, social media and the detrimental effect that sharing each and every moment of our lives is having on society.

If you haven’t seen it yet…

I’ve been meaning to watch this and I finally got the chance to this evening, after seeing it tweeted with the words:

“…this will make you want to turn off your phone.”

It really struck a chord with me. It described exactly what each day of my life has become; as a slave, to my iPhone 5.

Now I don’t mean to make myself sound as if I’m the only human being in existence whom this piece of work relates to. It fits all of us. But it’s given me the proverbial kick up the backside that I needed to do something which is becoming a genuine problem in my life.

I can’t put my phone down.

And it’s not even because I’m popular; that I have many hundreds of adoring fans who want to hear how my day was. I pick it up, I check Facebook, refresh my Twitter timeline and go on Instagram. I put it down. 5 minutes later, I pick it up and I do it all again. Lather, rinse, retweet…

It’s driving me insane!

I do it to satisfy a need for attention, a need which smartphones and social media has spawned in all of us. My problem is I have no self-control, I tell myself to ignore my phone and it lasts, momentarily, before I’m back at it again; enduring that disappointing, sinking feeling, when I find that in the last 30 seconds I haven’t received a new notification.

It’s pathetic, and it needs to change. I feel as if it’s starting to have a harmful effect on my life. I can’t allow myself to sit back and allow it to continue, any longer.

And now, for my bit. Yes folks, I created a YouTube video as part of this; to explain exactly where I’m coming from.

So, to confirm, here’s what I’m going to be doing for the next month:

  • No Smartphone. The phone I replace it with will do nothing but talk and text.
  • No Facebook. No Twitter. No Instagram. I’m delegating control of these three to my family for the next 30 days to make sure I stick to it.
  • Computer time kept to a minimum and only for doing stuff that’s productive. No Facebook here, either.
  • Radio on in the car, no iPod, so I can keep up with what’s going on out-with the bubble I’ve existed in for the last few years.

See you in a month folks!



The Final Frontier

I’ve been following this on Engadget for a while now. The final frontier in establishing a 24/7 connected planet for us to inhabit, for however many years until the next Mayan deemed ‘end of the world’. 

Over the last few months, airlines have been working with the FCC to develop systems which will enable them to provide wireless internet access to passengers on board their jets; ultimately allowing you to FaceTime your Ma as your plane hits turbulence flying over the South of Spain. 

This may surprise you: I’m not 100% sure how I feel about this. 

The article I’ve linked to this entry mentions the same attitude. For many, and I imagine the frequent flying business types will agree with me, the few hours we spend airborne on our way somewhere are the only few hours we get to truly get away from it all. Purely because someone else has told us it’s not allowed. Personally, I get a great deal of enjoyment out of turning my phone off and having it purely as a music player for the duration. Despite the many hours of my life I spend using it to see what other people are doing on Facebook, post amateur shots of crap/my dog on Instagram or update people on the meaningless wonderings and day-to-day happenings of my life on Twitter, my phone actually gets on my tits!

Don’t get me wrong, I still love it, but I have developed an addiction to it, through this notion bestowed on us by the technology giants of the world, that we must be able to find out where our Ex is any given hour of the day, see what that colleague from school that we absolutely hated is saying now or reply to that email from your boss instantly. 

You want my honest opinion? I don’t think this is a great idea. Simultaneously, work has gone into allowing the cellular transmitters to be enabled on board, allowing the devices to use the same equipment which is available to them whilst on the ground. How that’s going to work is beyond me…I can’t get decent download speeds sitting in the back of my parents car on our way to Edinburgh to see the family; how is it going to work 40,000ft off the ground at 400MPH? Let’s go one step further. People worry about the air quality on board; the recycled air particles being shared with two or three hundred other human beings on board. Now imagine doing that with the fat guy in the seat next to you, who’s already encroaching on your personal space by several feet and who’s converation you now have full privilege of listening to? 

Doesn’t sound all that appealing any more, huh? 

And I haven’t even got to the best part yet: You want to use it? It’s most likely going to be extortionate! 


So as you all know by now, and if not you’re about to find out, I’m a bit of a social-media mogul; Tumbling through a world of pressed-words, Books of Faces and incessant Twattering. I also enjoy posting photos of various events in my life, tinted with various vintage hue’s, on Instagram.

First off, I’m not much of a photographer. Sure I can take a photo of something at a jaunty angle, enhance it by removing the red from people’s eyes (or in my case, the stubborn smattering of acne I’ve suffered with since puberty) with iPhoto and shove it out there for the rest of the world to see, but that’s as far as my efforts really go. A mate got me into Instagram, saying he wanted me as a follower because his dream was to have one of his photo’s make the Popular Page.

He should know who he is, he recently changed his Handle to include the word ‘official’ like he’s some kind of celebrity… 😉

I enjoy it. I follow a myriad of famous people, celebrities and friends, who all post graphic evidence of their life achievements, day-to-day happenings and meals…

However, it also has to be one of the most self-indulgent, vain media platforms out there today. Sure I grant you that, as I sit on my flight to Amsterdam tapping this out on my phone, it’s pretty self-indulgent for me to expect folk to want to read this after I post it. However, I encourage you all to write a blog about my flaws. I assure you, you’d have plenty to write about!

I will point out now, that I love writing. I do this as a hobby; anyone who reads and has something to say about it is just a bonus. I welcome the feedback. Who knows, maybe one day I’ll break out on my own as a journalist and become as condescending, arrogant and wealthy as Piers Morgan; writing a column for an upper middle-class Sunday supplement. Without the phone hacking scandal of course. To get involved in anything like that, just for a tacky news story, would just be silly.

Instagram was developed to allow people to see your life through the lens of your iPhone. (Yes, it was originally developed only as an iOS app.) With the advent of Photo Stream, it also allowed users to share photos you take with your digital camera and import to your computer.

As with everything however (and Facebook and Twitter are no different) folk have taken it upon themselves to clog Instagram’s data centre with nothing but photos of themselves; cross-referencing them with an array of hash-tags hence ensuring maximum exposure to others equally as vain.

“This is me with my head to the left.” “This is me with my head to the right with my hand on my hip. #girl #blonde #pretty”

Gads… It really is sickening.

Those of you who know me personally, and follow me on Instagram, will have seen me make a similar attempt whilst at the gym a few weeks ago; targeting some of my satire at both those who check-in at the gym only to let those associated with them know they ‘work out,’ and those who perpetually fill my Instagram feed with photos of themselves.

Whilst waiting in the airport this morning, I read an interesting piece on the increase in web traffic seen on Instagram, during the recent US election. The service saw a growth of 2.5x it’s normal volume of uploads (some 120,000 images) from Americans, all sharing their experiences as part of the 2012 election; all under the banner of #USelection2012. Granted, some of them were stupid enough to post photo’s of their actual votes. Sadly, this was enough to render them null and void.

Allowing others to share your experiences and connect with each other from afar is what the Internet is about. Well, apart from that other use the Internet has; the unofficial reason most teenage boys and lonely men have for it. It’s not a place for us to constantly show our faces from a different angle, hoping that someone out there will give us the positive comment we’re all desperate to get once more; that will further inflate and prop-up our ego’s.

Instagram is a place designed to demonstrate creativity; to inspire. I mean, after all, if you’re going to post a selfie on the Internet, would you not rather it was for your friends enjoyment?
Yes, I did in fact pull this face, snap a photo of it and iMessage it to two people, as part of a game we play each day. No there is not a pane of glass between myself and the camera. You can find some others, equally as misfortunate, on Instagram by searching on the hash-tag #instamackaill.

For more dry, nonsensical rumblings such as this, you can find me on Twitter, Instagram and Tumblr as @lth0ms0n.

The featured image at the top of this post was taken from the Instagram Tumblog. It is, sadly, not one of my own creation, but pretty damn cool all the same!


This really irks me. In fact, it just plain grinds my gears and causes me serious grief.

What am I on about?

Hash-Tagging. Something mis-used in social networking as frequently as the semi-colon in a Higher English exam. But as I’m typing this on my phone right now, please forgive me for shortening it to #tagging to save my, already RSI riddled, thumb joints.

#tagging is a feature of Twitter. It makes tweets searchable, thus allowing users of the platform to “Join the conversation.” – Twitter’s Tag-Line

Use a particular tag enough, and it begins to ‘trend.’ Thus allowing those who feel the need to join a conversation, but don’t know which to add their particular tuppence worth, can find a place to start. Such topics as the X Factor, tragic events and celebrities names are the usual culprits, and Twitter also uses your approximate location to filter out trending topics to your country or local area; keepin’ it real current!

Clicking on a persons use of a #tag in their tweet will initiate a search of their database for other 140 character long statements using the same tag. This way, people can see what others are saying about a particular event or occurrence.

This has given way to those who have decided clever games they can play, using this feature. Such tags as #stuffmymumsays or #putyourdickinamovie title have all made an appearance in my live feed over the last year and a half. Tagging can also be used to place a theme on your tweet, such as #awkward or #fml. That way, teenage boys everywhere can wince, moan, and share each others pain when they tweet about that time their Mum walked in on them during some ‘alone time.’

This, and this alone, is the purpose of #tagging. Nothing else.

Insert condescending Crabbies Bint…

A recent phenomena has developed however. It is a travesty, and a stop simply must be put to it.

Yes, you wont believe it, people are #tagging on…Facebook.

I feel your pain, Mark…

See his face? Let the poor guy catch a break; he’s had enough stress this year watching his share price plummet the day Facebook went public!

Why do people do this? I know; complete and utter technological ignorance. I face it daily, and that’s just with my Father trying to print his boarding passes the night before he leaves for West Africa. Every trip. Every evening I’m called to deal with something I’ve explained countless times before, only to find myself in exactly the same situation.

It’s not cool; it’s entirely pointless, and frankly it makes you look like a giant douche. We must unite against those in an attempt to end this, and return #tagging to the purpose for which it was intended, and to be enjoyed. What’s next? Are we to start a photo sharing platform to do nothing but take photo’s of ourselves with the #tag ‘#pretty’?

Oh wait, I forget, we already have something for that…

Without a shadow of a doubt, the most unintentionally SELF INDULGENT social network, on the planet

I’m in too fervent a rage to sign this with my normal stance. However, please reply with your thoughts!