W Magazine’s Gender Swamping, “Frankly my dear, I don’t give a damn”

W Magazine has re-created the iconic scene between Clark Cable and Vivien Leigh in Gone With the Wind, but with a twist.

The twist? A gender swapped audition reel with some of our favourite or most talked about celebrities.

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Social Media Stupid of the Week: El Furniture Warehouse Toronto

Around 3 pm yesterday I saw my first “El Furniture Warehouse posted a transphobic, distasteful Caitlyn Jenner post” on my social feed.  By that point, Warehouse Group had taken down the original post, but I quickly found the screen shot taken by @chefgrantsotoin question.

Even for a dive bar that has an established a “DGAF” image, whose social feeds mostly contain staff selfies and frat-boy humour, the Caitlyn Jenner post crossed a line.  But, what really put the nail in the coffin in this unfortunate situation was the response of the anonymous poster behind the Warehouse Group account to Instagramers who called out the post for being inappropriate.

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Smartphones, Social Media and the other Sins of Modern Dating

I will be the first to admit that I can’t live without my iPhone. It helps me remember everyone’s phone number, keeps me on top of my bank account balance, reminds me when I have plans and how to get to where ever I need.  My phone’s become a necessity in my life, kind of like my house keys or my wallet, and I am rarely without it.

I can’t argue against the need we have for our phones, but I will argue that it has ruined dating.

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Why I don’t like ads in my Instagram Feed

This morning as I was having my morning coffee and casually scrolling through my Instagram feed of friends holiday parties, artistically shot snow scenes and tropical sunrises, when a photo of a coffee maker popped up.

My reaction was shift, “Wtf?? I unfollowed this brand. What is this doing here???” mobwiveswtf

And then it dawned on me.  It was a Sponsored Instagram Post. Yes, I had just been served with an ad.

Instagram Curation Ruined

To put into context my reaction to seeing a coffeemaker in my feed – I am one of those people who have carefully curated my Instagram feed. I am very particular about who I follow and it is usually for one of three reasons:

  1. I really like you as a person
  2. I really like your photography / vision / how you see the world
  3. I like your brand and enjoy how you visually communicate your brand personality

The curation of my feed has been something I have worked on since first joining Instagram, so I most certainly noticed the bad catalogue quality photo of a coffeemaker from a brand I do not follow (for a reason I might add) in my feed.

really ron burgendy

To be honest, the unwelcome ad also felt like a bit of a violation.  I had not realized until that moment, that I had become quite happily accustomed to the non-ad experience of Instagram. I had come to really enjoy having full control of what I saw in my feed and having this choice taken away from me did not sit well.

Conclusion: Ads in my feed? Umm no. No, thank you

This morning I have concluded that I do not like ads in my feed.

But, I really do not like ads of sub-par catalogue shots of a product I don’t want to buy, from a brand who is boring and unimaginative enough to take a shot from their flyer and cross-promote it on their “social media.”

And you know what Instagram? My experience is contrary to how you have positioned the introduction of advertising on your platform to be, and I quote:

“we’ve worked with a handful of top brands to draw creative inspiration from the community and create ads that were engaging and felt natural in people’s feeds.”

The ad I received most certainly did not feel natural or engaging. Had I seen an ad from a brand I do follow, I probably wouldn’t have noticed it and I probably would have grudgingly excepted the intrusion of ads into my feed. But, that would have been too logical right? Or not as “sellable” enough maybe?

But mostly, I am disappointed.  I thought you had more creativity then this. More imagination and more of a desire to serve as a platform of inspiration.

I guess I was wrong, Instagram.

Because no matter how good your filters are (they do have a special ingredient in making any persons complexion look dewy and youthful) this mornings experience has soured my relationship with you.

I don’t know what I’m going to get in my feed anymore.  It was only a coffee maker this time, but what will be next? Detergent?

I am not interest gif

The Takeaway

Lesson here Instagram is to launch your new advertising platform slowly, like a soft breeze rather than a January night squall.  Everyone likes soft breezes. They feel good.  But, no one likes January squalls.

#JedzJabłka: Polands Social Media Selfie Protest

In the ongoing bullshit that Russia is pulling in Europe, last week Putin banned the import of Polish Fruit & Vegetables.   BBC News reports the reasoning for the ban is that “Russia’s food hygiene authorities said the imports had unacceptable levels of pesticide residues and nitrates.”  Sure … we believe that. This clearly has NOTHING to do with the fact that Poland has been one of the most vocal critics of Russian actions in Ukraine.  Nope, nothing at all.  And Russia is not trying to punish Poland for toeing the line that Russia believes should be toed by all former Easter-Block nations.  Nope, not at all.

The Kollektive_EatApples_1

the kolleketive_EatApples

But, one should never underestimate Poles & our ability to call bullshit when we see it.

Our fellow country men called bullshit on Putin in the most spectacular way by starting a social media protest, #EatApples Twitter / Selfie protest, that is quickly gaining tracking internationally & hopefully annoying Putin to no end.

Show your support, eat an apple & take a selfie using these hashtags: #EatApples #JedzJabłka

#FuckCanada: Olympics, Rivalry & Social Media

fuck canadaThe Winter Olympics always draws out the age-old American & Canadian Hockey rivalry.  America’s who are the best at everything & feel no shame in proudly announcing this are confronted with a nation of  not-as-polite-as-usual Canadians, who consider Hockey domination as a cornerstone of national pride.  This rivalry came to a hilarious light on Twitter this week as American Hockey fans did the only thing they could after Thursday’s Women’s Hockey Gold Metal game, they tweeted “Fuck Canada.”

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Toronto Instagratification 2013 (This is not a lesson in Social Media)

The plan was to post this a lot sooner, but I’ve been editing it for almost 3 weeks now.  I have now decided that I just want to share my excitement about being part of a Contact Festival photography exhibit & to share the pictures I captured during the opening of the Instagratification 2013 at  Goodfellas Gallery on May 3rd, 2013.


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