Instagram's Effect on Art

Instagram's Effect on Art

Vox, 2018, 5:55… Museums — both new pop-ups and traditional institutions — are capitalizing on smartphone culture by creating spaces whose main appeal is being a backdrop for a great selfie. As more kinds of retail experiences move online, spaces like this — where digital reproducibility through social media is an active part of the design — are only going to get more common.

Doing Gender in Selfies

Why men and women take selfies differently -- Quartz, 2017, 4:17 --

An interesting example of how masculinity and femininity are found in taking selfies. Men look down at the camera (signaling dominance) while women look up to appeal to men. There's a brief discussion of online dating data as well. A downfall of this video is the interpretation based in evolutionary theory, rather than sociology.

Millennials, Rent, and Home Ownership

Young Americans Are Worried They'll Be Renting Forever -- Vice News, 2017, 2:28 --

A good short video (sponsored by GEICO) on how Millennials are being excluded from the housing market and how they adapt to (and transform) the changing American dream of homeownership.

Chinese Millennials and National Service

Too Many Students? China Has a Plan... -- China Uncensored, 2017, 5:56 --

An interesting perspective on China's required military service for young people and how they avoid such service. Keep in mind that many American men, some of whom are now in positions of great social power, did the same excusatory practices during Vietnam. While this video may start out sounding a bit too ethnocentric, I think it recovers well and ultimately shows us that "we" are not so different after all. This lesson is made more important when we consider the anomic state of our globalized economies right now. 

China's Rich Girls

China's Rich Girls (101 East) -- Al Jazeera, 2017, 25:40 --

A video detailing the extravagant lives of wealthy young Chinese women living in Canada. The main theme here is the conspicuous consumption of status symbols made possible by being born into a family of high socioeconomic status. This can also be seen through a dramaturgical perspective as staging behavior is rather prominent here, especially surrounding their image online and on television. 

Sex, Sexuality, and Technology

"Crush", Dark Net (S1 Ep1) -- Showtime, 2016, 28:09 --

Available for free for a limited time-- This episode explores how technology and the Internet affected our sexual relationships through 3 vastly different profiles, all loaded with data for context. The couple who met on a BDSM fetish website introduces us to the concept of pervertables and raises questions surrounding consent; the young man in Japan who is in love with Rinko, a character on his Nintendo 3DS, challenges our typical notions of a relationship; and the young woman who had her nude photos posted to over 2,000 revenge porn websites with no legal framework to turn to for help. All of these stories highlight social problems related to sex in our digital world.     

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Winning at Capitalism, Losing at Life?

Fleeing South Korea (101 East) -- Al Jazeera, 2016, 24:28 --

An interesting and contemporary look at South Korean immigrants in the United States. We learn that 88% of young South Koreans (millennials) want to leave the country, but why? The answer seems to be in the unbearably competitive (i.e., long) work schedule. It appears that South Korea's neoliberal economy has created unattainable standards of materialism and an unsatisfying work/life balance. As a result, many young South Koreans see the social status structure of America as more desirable-- a view made more interesting when we consider how many Americans feel that Europeans have better policies towards vacations, parental leave, shift length, and more. 

Rational Living with WeLive

Vice News Tonight: Living the WeLife -- Vice Media, 2016, 3:44 --

Max Weber would have a fit if he saw this for here we see the iron cage of rationality applied to the home. WeWork is a company which applied McDonaldization to the work/office space and now is branching out into the home/apartment market with WeLive. The residents- in this rationally-ordered "commune" seem to view domestic life as just another burden best taken care of by some dispassionate expert. The goal seems to be a aimed at creating a maximum-efficiency environment where one can fully and completely devote their energies to their work. For $4,875 per month you can enjoy a dorm-like environment where your physical space and living schedule has been planned in a manner that can be called "the WeWork circle of life".