Can’t do without

I am always saying that I use the internet way too much. But on thinking on it, I don’t just search stuff, I use specific sites and services. And the sad thing is, that I rarely travel out with those services. So, I thought I would share the stuff I use most, and why.

YouTube I watch more content on here, than I do on any other service. I watch videos in areas that I am interested in, which are usually related to retro gaming, book reviews, Japan, news or just general geekery. I look for a topic I like, and watch any videos that come up. If I like people I subscribe. Every so often, I will go through every video a channel has made, just for fun, and it absorbs hours of my
life.

Twitter I use Twitter all the time, which is not as much as I used to. Twitter has become a place for breaking news, but it’s a swing and a miss, as there is ALWAYS fake information circulating. Twitter is where I rant if I am stuck in traffic or had a bad day, I let of some steam. It can be a great place for customer services, a lot of companies these days have someone manning a company twitter profile, and will try to help. If I am feeling anxious, twitter can be an easy way for me to get help or advice, just use the right hashtags, and the internet is great. Just remember and don’t feed the trolls.

Facebook 🙄This is probably one of the most problematic sites on the internet. Mostly because some people go on it without having any kind of brain engagement. It’s good for articles, sometimes, the non-fake, click bait ones. The main reason I use Facebook is because of Messenger. Most of the people I know are within reach on Messenger, so that gets used, a lot. So it’s good for connecting with friends, which I think is what Mr Zuckerberg wanted when he started the site.

Instagram I like pictures. I like taking them and I like looking at them. And Instagram is one of the most popular photo sharing sites in the world. It’s a great way to find artistic inspiration, which is something I am ALWAYS in need of. Never been into the trendy make-up and stuff, which are hugely popular on the site. But, there are things for everyone on there, and there are communities which are great for help, like anxiety and weightloss help.

Goodreads I like books, always have done. And this site is great for keeping track on what you read, and giving yourself personal goals. Something I am not very good at. It is another service with a great community. If there is a particular book genre you like, join a group and get loads of new recommendations and even make new friends. A lot of authors also reach out to readers over Goodreads, which is great.

I decided to shorten my list to 5, as I really could go on for a bit. Other services include WordPress, Amazon, Xbox Live, Netflix, Crunchyroll, Spotify and livejournal. I could waste my whole life on these sites, but it wouldn’t feel like a waste. The internet allows me to view content I want, and that is a great thing.

Arguing with technology

I am currently in a mood. I have fallen out with my computer, as it has decided to not do what I want. Well, it may be more a software thing, rather than the actual computer, but it is still super frustrating.

sick PC

I was in town on my own today, and it was one of those rare occasions when I had my camera in my bag. So, feeling all inspired, I thought I’d try to go to new Carnegie Library and Museum, and document it. The plan was to film bits, and then do a voice over when I got home. I have been wanting to practice my video making abilities and get better, so I thought it would be a great idea. So, I came home and edited everything together. Was pretty happy, until I tried to record the voice over. The microphone on my computer has decided not to work. Queue me huffing like a 3 year old.

After some sleuthing online, I found out that a previous Windows 10 update may have rendered the microphone useless. So, I needed to go to the ASUS website and download the newest version of the driver for the microphone. Seemed okay, till the ASUS website became unavailable since it was doing an update. I gave up at this stage.

My original plan was to have things updated today, but obviously the forces of the universe are against me. I have a big bulk done, so hopefully I shall get up early tomorrow and get it finished. I say hopefully, because my productivity comes and goes so fast. At least all that energy I have today, hasn’t gone to complete waste. I have complained and updated this blog at the same time. Yay!

Bad Connection

You don’t need to read very much here, to realise that I can get stressed out over nothing. Silly things, can have such an adverse effect on my mood. It doesn’t even really matter what it is, really. But that happens to everyone.

These days, we are so used at getting anything we want so easily. Years ago, if we wanted to know anything, we would have to have went to a library and researched. Now? A simple internet search can find you everything from historical information, to recipes, to watching cartoons. No longer do people have to wait months for new programmes to air in their respective countries, they can find an online service to stream content the same day as it is aired in the country of origin. I tell you now, my 12 year old self, would be utterly spellbound by this concept alone.

However. The internet becoming so important in daily life, does create an issue. Especially, when like today, your connection to the internet is a steaming pile of donkey shit. Yes, my internet connection, both my home broadband, and mobile 4G, have been playing up. It means, that it has taken till this time of night (10.30pm) before I could get a connection steady enough to post this. That is flaming ridiculous. Couldn’t listen to Spotify, couldn’t watch Naruto (sshhhh… don’t judge) and I had problems messaging my friend, because I use Whatsapp or Facebook messenger. I was angry. For most of the day.

It does make me think, what would I do if there was no internet. If I wanted to sit by the TV, I’d have to put on a DVD or stick to the schedules, instead of watching Youtube or … Naruto. (I am obsessed with Naruto, like a child, all over again.) I think it is very easy to take for granted on how simple it is to stay in contact with people, thanks to services such as Facebook. A service that can even link with your calendar on your phone or PC, to remind you of events or birthdays. The internet has simplified so much, that when it isn’t there, we come to a loss. If there is no connection to the web, everything can seem like it takes so much more extra effort.

Maybe we have just got lazy.

Tuning In

Music is a constant in my life, and it is probably the same with anyone reading this. Of course, you may not actively seek out to listen to music, but it is still there. It is in the shops you visit, it accompanies your favourite TV shows and is on the radio station you listen to in your car. It is everywhere. Music is that one think that helps give everything rhythm.

A lot has changed in how we get music, to purposefully listen to.When I was wee, people taped songs off the radio. Something that was a bit of an art-form, if I were to be honest. Trying to get as much of a song as possible, without the voice of the station DJ. I remember swapping my tapes with friends, as everyone had different mixes. It was fun, and I could see myself listening to the Pepsi Chart show, spending the large portion of my Sunday, waiting for my favourite songs. I was young and daft, but weren’t we all

As soon as I had my own money, I would by music magazines and any album (at that point CDs) I could afford. The thrill of new music, and getting to read the liner notes made me feel like I was getting a snippet at a band I liked. It wasn’t long after that things changed forever. The internet came into public use, and friends I knew started using services like Napster and Limewire to download songs. It was the first time, for many, that they could access an artist’s entire back-catalogue with a few clicks, and it didn’t cost a penny. I, myself, tried Limewire, but a virus and incorrectly labelled music files, caused me to opt put of that option. I still liked my CDs.

Eventually things progressed. The torrent sites were forced offline or became unreliable, and online digital music stores like iTunes, reaped the benefit. However, with today’s faster internet speeds, people are opting into streaming content. To the stage, where most radio stations stream live content from their websites. It means that you can now pay a monthly fee, if you want to, and stream your favourite artists to your games console, smart TV, mobile, or almost every device that can get an internet connection. It is getting to the stage, where a lot of people who consume music, don’t even need to purchase it anymore. I find that sad.

I use streaming services,  like Spotify and Amazon Music, but I use them for either ‘music-on-the-go’ or to find new music to listen to. The last few albums I purchased, was for artists that were on my recommended playlist on Spotify. These services are smart, they know what artists you listen to most, and give you new music based on that. It’s very intuitive.

I am friends with a lot of musicians, all of which make the most money when someone buys an album or some other merchandise. So, as a result, I have always bought music.I like to try and get the physical CD, or even vinyl record, to put money back into an artist I enjoy. I think that is only fair. Unfortunately, not everyone thinks the same. For every legitimate streaming site, there are 3 or 4 illegal streaming services. Now sites like Putlocker maybe are more about movies and TV shows, but the point still stands. Is it really fair to enjoy something, but not pay for it?

Maybe it is because I have been stung by people wanting things for free, myself. A few years back, when I was on my last year/ just left college, I tried to get a graphic design business up and running. It was actually the main reason this very blog was started, to promote the development of my new company. Unfortunately, it didn’t take off quite like I expected. I struggled getting clients, because I was on my own, and had no experience. But I would get interest from people, mostly from established local companies, requesting some work to be done. Unfortunately, these people wanted everything done for free. I kind of excepted this was going to be part of starting up myself. I had a part-time job, but stepped up to full time, to pay for bills and things. The people, who wanted the free labour, would send me emails when they knew I was working (I gave every perspective client my work rota, so they knew when I’d be available). I would finish working a long day in a call center, and would have several emails from people, all sent during that day, asking why I was ignoring them. I was working, my phone was off, and I couldn’t access my private emails, something I had already explained. I would get dog’s abuse off these people, who said that they were doing me a favour. But I worked on, and sent them the final work and they refused to acknowledge me.  They had previously said that the publicity would be good for me, so they shouldn’t have to pay. It was horrible. I lost all confidence, and to-date, I kind of put everything on hold.

And that is why, I don’t think I could sleep at night, knowing that I was taking in the work of other creatives for nothing. So no Kodi boxes for me, you can keep your ‘chipped’ Sky systems, and I’ll pay for what I can afford. And I will appreciate it all.

 

Don’t Like Asking

Happy Sunday! I hope you are having an enjoyable and relaxing day. I did my usual, went to the gym, and then did nothing else. It is Sunday, after all. But, after deciding that I didn’t want to watch The Day After Tomorrow for the twentieth time (it’s not that good), I eventually started watching YouTube. And in particular, the wonderful Tessa Violet. Someone whose content I have been enjoying for a number of years.

Anyways, I was watching one of Tessa’s videos from a few months back, where she was talking about insecurities and how asking what other people though of her, made her feel uncomfortable. And that got those rusty cogs in my head spinning, slightly. What do I hate doing? Well, I hate asking for help or advice. I am a ‘think about it and just wing it’ kind of girl. I don’t know why that is, but it is how I have been as long as I dare to remember.

It’s why a lot of my entries here, end up being almost like advice blogs. Sometimes, there is no almost about it. I know that I have problems, I am more likely to search on YouTube or even WordPress, for articles or videos on my issue. This sounds a bit silly to some, but normally the advice given on these sites are not professional, they are just people speaking honestly from their own experiences. And that means, I can get helpful information without bothering anyone I actually know.

You see, that is a big problem about anxiety. You get so bogged down by your own problems, that you get the bizarre logic that sharing what’s wrong will just bog that other person down too. And, everyone else has enough problems going on, without dealing with my crap too. That mindset is one that has developed over years, and it means that as well as struggling to share what I am going through to an actual person, I can’t approach the subject at all. If I do, I panic, I freeze up, and I kind of fall apart. So it is easier to keep it to myself.

The internet has become a rich resource, and not just the generic help sites, I mean the user created content. Maybe it is because, I like reading or listening to another person’s experience. If I can relate my problems to someone else’s then I get strength to find a solution. And then, noone I know is bothered by me and my crap. It is easier that way.

Disconnection Notice

It has recently been made abundantly clear that my, once passionate, love affair with the internet is going through a rough patch. I am becoming frequently frustrated to the point of putting my phone’s internet off, so that people can call me if they need me, but I don’t get interrupted by the constant Facebook and Twitter updates.

Yes, I am at that stage where I am avoiding the other party of the ‘relationship’. Normally in that situation, you would change how you walk to work, or try and hang out with different people. Try and create some space between yourself and the other person. However, when your relationship is with such a thing as the internet, it isn’t that easy. Actually, it becomes so overly dramatic that a relationship with a real person would have probably been easier to deal with.

I mean, everyone has been in ‘that’ relationship, where despite loving that person, everything they do winds you up the wrong way. Where you just want smack them on the head, and you can’t really tell them why. So, you try and put some space between you both. However, saying you ‘have a sore head’ doesn’t stop the internet. It is everywhere. Everything from restaurants to tampon companies have their own twitter handles. If you liked one craft page 2 years ago on Facebook, the site recommends events near you every 2-3 days. Sometimes I feel smothered.

But that’s not even the worst bit. When I was at my lowest point, the internet came to the rescue. It showed me that I was not alone in feeling so rejected all the time, that I could voice how I feel, and all seemed awesome. But, obviously, fairy tales don’t actually exist, and reality happened. When I say reality, I mean people who like to spread hatred from behind vague avatars. This was a nasty streak in the internet that I never foresaw. It wouldn’t happen to me, we are so happy together. But it did.

Now, a person’s nasty streak is easy to deal with. You can utter sarky retorts to their insults, or you just walk away. Yes, what they say hurt may leave a mark, but you can leave that one person. The internet isn’t a singularity, so dealing with any negativity from it, is a bit harder. If someone has taken to ‘troll’ something you have created, it normally isn’t just one person. And you also may find these trolls are a bit braver than what they would be in the real world, which means more cutting comments. I did what any sane person would do, I decided I needed time apart from the internet. I stopped going onto forums and writing blogs as often, as these places are where the negativity came from. Good? Kind of. When I did log on, I saw a lot of hate and the spread of intolerance. This is not the internet I had loved and used so heavily.

Who are you these days, dear internet? You are no longer the place that I go when things get to stressful. After allowing me to feel free, after so long hating who I am, you are now lampooning me for being that same person. A normal person would at least be able to explain their actions. And, as an adult, I wouldn’t need to rely on a person for EVERYTHING. My job exists because of the internet. I get my music and TV over the internet. I contact friends around the world on the internet.

Maybe I just need to change my relationship with the internet? Or maybe get in a relationship with a real life actual person?

Or not.

 

BEDA: New Challenge & Future Changes

It’s April. That means that a lot of creative types are attempting to be super creative for an entirety of the month. I am taking part in Blog Every Day in April (BEDA), in a bid to help motivate me. It is a project that I first actually saw on YouTube, where video bloggers took part in Vlog Every Day in April (VEDA). People do also take part in the challenge in August. I love blogging, so thought that it would be a good wee challenge for myself. I like doing things like this, or at least giving them a try. So, I am looking forward to sharing things every day, and seeing how it pans out.

The challenge actually coincides with me changing a few things online. And, I don’t just mean just changing layouts and visual things. For the last few years I have used various internet networks as ‘sueriotgraphics’, which did make sense at one point. It maybe was a bit optimistic, but it gave an idea that I did want to do graphic design. This launch into my ideal career has stalled on more than one occasion. I have struggled to stay to motivated, and have become really discouraged about creating art. Which super depressing as it is, without seeing the ‘graphics’ title everywhere, kind of rubbing me the wrong way.

I wasn’t planning on doing anything too dramatic, just dropping the graphics bit. It would still connect to my aspirations. As I have mentioned before, I do have problems with anxiety, and it helps me when I can ‘close the door’ on things every so often. It is like stopping things, and starting a new chapter. I feel like it gives me a sense of control. To swipe aside any failures that I have had, and allow me to focus more on what’s ahead. It is like a cleanse.

I am hoping to start putting these changes through soon, and have started working on how I want everything to look. It is really exciting and I hope that doing BEDA will help keep me moving, and actually see this all through. Which would be a nice change, don’t you think?

#LikeAGirl

It’s not very often I will ask someone to watch an advert, just because of the content, but today I am. Always have made a video below that I think you should check out.

The sentiment of doing things ‘like a girl’ has always been used as derogatory, to me anyway. This is something that makes young girls hate themselves well into their adult life. And it is unfair, that one word should be used so negatively. And that one word is there to describe so many people. I think it comes from the idea, where negativity was used to drive people. So certain words were used as insults, as a way to motivate or make some people feel better than others.

But why should doing something ‘like a girl’ be a bad thing. I was born a girl, why should I be shamed that who I am is a bad thing. When I was at school, particularly in sport, if you did something ‘like a girl’, it was done poorly, and not right. To tell young girls that they are poor, just because of who they are, is a terrible thing. But it extends past that. Negative connotations are put on to feminine words and attributes as if they are less important than more masculine ones. This isn’t true. This is what centuries of patriarchy have done, where women were nothing more than birthers and skivies, where the men ran things.

And even now, in 2014, there are major problems with how women are treated by society. And with being dismissed from youth, a lot of women do not have the self belief to stand up and try to make a change. Every woman I know has had some form of assault made towards them, for no reason other than walking down a street. Where if out in a club, a man doesn’t take ‘I am a lesbian’ as an answer, and forces himself onto a woman not interested. She is painted as a slut, as boys will be boys.

It’s time to change how the world thinks, and start with taking back ‘like a girl’. I do everything like a girl, because I am one. I am a fighter, and I will fight so that every woman can feel strong and no longer feel less because of what sex they are. This video is a start, a start to make it so no girls lose their confidence during puberty. To start saying that if you do something ‘like a girl’, it is doing something as much as possible, and pass message on to every person, young and old.

Time for change.

 

 

Expectations?

When I tell people I like to blog a lot some have asked me about ‘outfits of the day’. I am gathering this is such a ‘hot topic’ because it seems like every female blogger talks about fashion and what they are wearing. Which is fine, but I feel that it has been expected for every female to run their blog like a fashion blog. That isn’t true, and shouldn’t be.

Everyone is different and if they run a blog, they should do so because it matters to them. There is no point trying to force something just because it is on trend. Yes, it could garner attention for a blog, but the chance of the blog being updated when it isn’t about something of interest is not likely. It sucks the fun right out of something, if someone is forced to talk about something they have no interest in.

Fashion is very popular for a reason, it is a good way to express yourself, I get it. I just have never focused on fashion. I dress to be comfortable, and that is pretty much jeans and a t-shirt. And I don’t see the big deal. I don’t wear make-up, I don’t buy much clothes, i don’t get my nails done… I just don’t subscribe to the ‘beauty lifestyle’. I never have. I have been a tomboy my whole life, and I don’t see that changing. I believe in substance over style. Not that there is anything wrong with being into fashion and things. I just express myself in different ways.

Set Topic

I have been on the internet a lot, just browsing various websites and blogs. It appears that there is this mass unappreciation of any audience on the internet. By tying a blog into a particular topic, you become part of a particular community, and you get more page views and subscribers as a result. If a particular movie or game gets a new release, and you frequently blog about it, you will get more views. And if you post frequently, you will get more visitors from being a part of that online community. This is something great, that communities and fandoms are helping to create and promote content amongst one another. You make friends on other websites, you get ‘shout outs’ and promotion to other people that share your interest.

And as a solo blogger, I look at these blogs in awe. I have random interests, that peak and wain every now and then, and what I post relates to that. I love writing what is on my mind, as I started blogging for me, and documenting my life. I really don’t want to heavily promote other people’s products, just because I have blocked myself into writing about certain things. I know, from my own experience, that I don’t have the momentum to stay on the same topic too long, as I have so many things rushing around in my brain. So it would be more likely if I had one thing to post about, that my blog would die. And that would be a very sad thing. To me.

I still get excited over every view my blog gets. That someone even thought to glance at what I have created. It may be one or two people, but it matters to me. Although, I did start this blog for myself, it is nice to think that someone likes what I write. Even if it is just one post. Maybe I like this style of blogging, because I don’t feel I am selling a product to someone. I mean, if I see a movie or hear an album I like, I may promote it, I just don’t feel I could do it constantly. And, call me crazy, but when a company starts giving you free products to review, it’s only so you can play sales person. There is no impartiality, which there needs to be in any review. Same when people get too involved with fan communities, you can pass the mark of being impartial, and it can impair judgement. It turns into how well you promote a thing, rather than appreciating that someone read what you created.

Those are just my thoughts, though.