Mini Assignment #4

I never really had a doubt (Halo – Beyonce)

You’re everything I need and more (Halo – Beyonce)

If you can see I’m the one who understands you (You Belong with Me – Taylor Swift)
Been here all along so why can’t you see

There’s no need to complicate (I’m Yours – Jason Mraz)
‘Cause our time is short

1 Trouser 2 Looks – Part Two

Back again with the same pants! This time, I’ve created an outfit to disrupt the business-casual style of the pants purposefully. Previously, we’ve discussed how we can assimilate the office-appropriate outfit into something that won’t look weird if you decide to go Downtown after work. We kept the material and color similar while adding some extra volume with a flowy cut on the camisole. This week, we will add an additional factor of surprise to the outfit.

From the front, the shirt looks like a simple knit-top with additional fabric wrapped around the waist. However, when you turn around you can see that there is an intricate wrap design that adds an element of surprise. I love this outfit, because it allows you to portray two characters without having to change anything. In the office, you can throw on a button-up cardigan for a work-appropriate outfit. During the night when you want to go bar-hopping with your friends, you can throw the cardigan in your purse and enjoy a more casual outfit. The top is both girly and flirty, with a minimalistic color that won’t raise eyebrows in the office. For shoes, I went with some comfortable tan pointed ballerina flats (unfortunately, I bought these in Japan so they aren’t accessible in Canada). Again, appropriate for the office setting and for the night out.

Where to find:

Peer Review – Moods and Mixtapes

This time, I have the pleasure of reviewing the blog of Erica, called Moods and Mixtapes.

Design:

Right off the bat, I am drawn in and very impressed with the design of the webpage. It reminds me of the graphics boxes you see in comic books. I can tell that Erica put a lot of thought into designing the blog. All of the visuals on the page have a common theme of abstract comic-style art, and it sets a personality to the blog. I can tell that the creator has a fun-loving personality and enjoys art. I would say that it may be more direct for the reader if there are stationary art pieces that says “music”, something that is obvious at first look.

Layout:

Once again, I love the design of the webpage. I really like that there is a side bar where everything is organized: from “home”, to “about me”, to “play when…”, to “publishing”. It can, however, get a little confusing because the blog posts are rather scattered on the pages. It’s hard to tell the chronological order of when things are posted.

Content:

Erica has a nice variety of music content for her readers. I really like that not only does she say which song she likes, she categorizes them into moods. Perhaps I am feeling stressed from school, I can be rest assured to find a playlist for that mood. Maybe I am feeling productive, I can probably also find a playlist that will help me get on the grind. I also really enjoy that she talks about mental health in some of her blog posts. When someone is searching for sad music, there are likely reasons behind that feeling. Erica does a great job of addressing potential concerns. It really adds the element of customization as well as personalization.

Social Media:

While Erica does not have any social media accounts linked, she does have her Spotify account on her menu. It makes a lot of sense for her blog content, and it fits right in. It would be great if Erica could also list her Instagram for her readers, although not everyone is comfortable with that so it’s really her call!

Process Post #7

This week, we had a guest speaker come in to speak to us about copyright rules and regulations. Copyright is a term that is often misunderstood, and it applies to any published content. Copyright is not the same concept as patents; patents are extremely expensive and need to be repurchased once it expires.

Copyright has been a particularly interesting topic on YouTube. Recent controversies among Youtubers have highlighted the issue of “fair use policy”, which states that users are able to use published content to make commentaries, criticism, and teaching-material. However, there have been circumstances where smaller content creators get their channels taken away due to larger and more established Youtubers filing ‘strikes’ against them. These ‘strikes’ of fair use violations are often misused and submitted solely because the original content creator does not agree with the commentaries or criticism.

As a viewer, it’s also irritating to see that content creators are not able to use music in their Youtube videos in fear of copyright violation. Even if the content creators sing the song themselves with no use of background music, they could risk having their content demonetized.

Process Post #6

For this week, I decided to try something new and do a “fashion favorites” blog post instead of an outfit post. I feel like winter is a time where a lot of people feel heavily restricted in their outfit choices. Numerous mornings, I wake up and throw on some leggings and oversized top because I want to prioritize being warm and comfortable instead of focusing on aesthetics. However, I feel like we don’t always need to sacrifice aesthetics in order to feel comfy in our outfits. After all, clothing is supposed to make you feel cozy and empowering. Before deciding what to wear, I always evaluate the weather as well as my activities for the day. If it’s sunny and I am going out with some friends, I prefer to dress well and wear some boots with a skirt. However, if it is raining and I just have to attend class, I would likely put less thought into how I look.

Ultimately, I hope that the post can encourage everyone to make well-informed and comfy purchases. The three items I listed all have a twist and edge to their design, which can easily elevate any outfit.

1 Trouser 2 Looks – Part One

In preparation for my co-op term next semester, I browsed the Artizia store last weekend in search of work-appropriate outfits. The most difficult part of choosing office-appropriate attire is the pants because I normally wear leggings and jeans at school or on the weekends. The material is comfortable, and I don’t need to put too much effort into choosing the top. Unfortunately, my next co-op job requires me to wear business-casual clothing to work every single day. Since over half of the clothing in my closet are inappropriate for the office settings, I have to make some thoughtful purchases on office-appropriate clothing.

The trouser that I picked out is a pair of black high-rise pants that are tapered at the bottom. I wouldn’t want this to be a purchase that I can’t wear on the daily, so I put together a few casual outfits that I can wear in the Fall or Springtime.

The best thing about this outfit is that it’s very versatile. If you’re in a warm in-doors environment, you can go without the cardigan and just wear the black satin cropped camisole. Since the cami is also black and has a satin finish, it does not disturb the simplicity and formality of the business-casual pants. However, the design allows you to step away from the strict office style. The cut of both the cami and the cardigan also allows the belt to peek through the front. I chose this grey, cropped cardigan because of its colour and cut. Since we chose a black top as well as black pants, it would be a slight jump if the cardigan had bright colors or loud patterns. This toned-down grey compliments the black and white theme of the outfit. For shoes, I went with a similar silver-color flats to match the cardigan.

Where to find:

Peer Review – JennWenn

This week I am doing my second peer review of the semester. I will be reviewing Jennifer’s blog, focusing on her design and theme.

Here’s the link to her blog if you’re interested in checking out her content! http://jennwenn.com/about/

Theme

Jennifer’s blog focuses on travel and food. As soon as I click onto her webpage, I can see a large photo of beach scenery. I can immediately tell that this will be a travel blog, perhaps more summer-focused as well. It would be great if she could add a food component to the background as well, perhaps make a collage of travel and food content.

Color Scheme

The blog makes really great use of white space and the washed-out colour of the main header image matches her clean theme very well. I like that she has chosen a rather simple and minimalistic approach to her blog, because too much colour can easily overwhelm the reader. I feel very relaxed reading her blog.

Font Usage

Jennifer has kept her font consistent for her main header as well as her menu. This is great for ease of viewing, but I would suggest maybe using a font that does not capitalize all letters. This way, the words could be easier to read.

Content

So far Jennifer has a few food and travel blogs linked on her blog, and I really like her use of photos instead of simply using words to describe the restaurants. It’s also great that the puts caption on the images to divert the audience’s eyes towards the main focus of the photos. She is also very detailed when describing the ambience, as well as listing out the price of foods. The use of photos of illuminated lights in her digital art museum blog is gorgeous as well. I would suggest that Jennifer upload more blogs so that viewers can have more content to binge on!

Social Media

It would be great if Jennifer could link her Instagram to her blog!

Process Post #5

This week I looked at redesigning and restructuring my website. Since we are conducting our second peer review focused on web design and layout, I decided to completely change my current theme. My previous theme had a no banner, but I added photos of fairy lights in the background to create the illusion of a cozy bedroom. Unfortunately, I did not receive great feedback for the fairy lights, because the majority of people did not think that it relates to the theme of the blog: winter cozy fashion. I also had a dark background with dark and light purple writing.

I decided that I will use a theme this time that displays a large banner as my front page. I wanted to choose a picture that would immediately explain my blog concept to new readers: a big walk-in closet. I chose a theme that was both modern and minimalistic, sticking to neutral tones. I feel like the minimalistic appearance of the closet on my banner accurately depicts my blog theme and style preference. I rarely wear garments with patterns or bright colors, so hopefully, readers can interpret that based on my banner on the home page. I also made the color theme bright and modern, which helps me better utilize my white space as well.

Sweater Varieties – Favourites

My favourite part of the Fall season is that I once again have an excuse to start sweater shopping. Often times, I find myself deviating towards purchasing the oversized, neutral-tone sweaters. While they are extremely comfy and cozy, I do find myself wanting to ditch the baggy look every once in a while. In this week’s blog post, I will introduce my three favourite “baggy sweater” alternatives that will both keep you warm and in trend.

#1: Cropped with an edge

Aritzia – Wilfred Yacine Longsleeve (Roebuck)
$98.00
https://www.aritzia.com/en/product/yacine-longsleeve/74445.html?dwvar_74445_color=12629

Before we hit full winter-bod mode, I like to expose a bit of stomach. This Wilfred sweater is thick enough for you to walk out of the house with just one extra layer. The material is predominantly composed of wool, so the website advices that you hand wash this piece. However, I have tested out the claim by carelessly throwing it into the wash, following it up with the dryer. As far as I can tell, the sweater seems to manage fine (although there may have been an initial shrinkage that stretches out over time anyway). It looks great with any high waisted jeans or skirts

#2: Cropped button-up cardigan

Aritzia – Wilfred Plunge Front Cardigan (Tan)
$138.00
https://www.aritzia.com/en/product/new-plunge-front-cardigan/76032.html?dwvar_76032_color=6824

If you’re starting to see a theme now with my blog posts, you’re right – I do love my crop tops (bonus if they sinch at the waist!). The most important aspect of putting together an outfit is to find your best asset and accentuate it. This will vary person-to-person, and for me I really appreciate any item of clothing that shows off the waist. I love this cardigan, because it’s easy to style and versatile throughout the changing seasons. During the Spring time, I use it as a “jacket/cardigan” over a cute spring top. It’s thick enough to fend off the chilly night breeze, and light enough to carry around when I’m indoors. During the Fall and Winter time, I wear this as a sweater on its own and layer a downed jacket over top. I will forewarn you that you do NOT want to put this into the wash and dryer. The striped knit-pattern will wrinkle, and that is not a good look. Additionally, tread carefully when wearing this as a sweater on its own (similar to how to model in the picture wears it), as the material is not the softest.

#3: Teddy sweater

Urban Outfitters – Track Meet Half-Zip Sweatshirt (Cream)
$59.00
https://www.urbanoutfitters.com/en-ca/shop/uo-track-meet-half-zip-sweatshirt?category=womens-tops&color=012&type=REGULAR

Last but not least, we can’t exclude the most prominent trend of 2019 – the teddy coat. Something about the cold season just brings out the teddy-bear fanatic in all of us. This white and fluffy sweater is the perfect pull-over on a casual night. If you don’t like wearing jackets, this sweater can temporarily substitute the need for jackets while the weather is still mild. Just make sure to wear something long-sleeved underneath!

Social Media and the Freedom of Speech (Essay #1)

            The freedom of speech is a right that often gets taken for granted in the age of social media. It’s often misunderstood and misused as a form of protection. Prior to the existence of social media, opinions and critiques were often exchanged face to face. Those who wished to exercise their freedom of speech were required to take ownership of their opinions. The first amendment specifies that freedom of speech should not be confused with freedom to hate speech. According to HG.org Legal Resources, the first amendment does not protect individuals in cases where slander, crimes involving speech, as well as threats and involved (What Type of Speech is Not Protected by the First Amendment). In our current society, there are two groups of individuals that seem to be immune to the regulations surrounding an individual’s rights to the freedom and speech: influential public figures and anonymous users. With the introduction of social media and the ability to appear “invisible”, individuals are no longer held accountable for their words. This could be viewed both positively and negatively; although it allows the timid to speak their mind and encourage discussions, the lack of accountability also has negative consequences (e.g. cyberbullying and hate speech). Freedom of speech is a dangerous right that can be misused and taken advantage of by outliers. At the end of the day, is it more important to protect individuals from slander and harm to maintain peace on social media? Or should we focus on maintaining the freedom of speech and our right to anonymity. In this paper, we will discuss the misuse of “freedom of speech” by public figures as well as bias from social media platforms.

            Currently, the first amendment of the United States does not specify whether social media giants such as Facebook and Twitter should be allowed to selectively censor individuals. It’s important to ask who makes the final call on which individual or opinions should be silenced. Twitter is a particularly controversial platform when it comes to political censorship. The platform has decided to “choose sides” on multiple occasions, censoring certain individuals yet turning a blind eye on influential figures. Although twitter claims that “the twitter rule applies to everyone”, CEO Jack Dorsey appears to be playing favoritism with the president of the United States, Donald Trump. Kamala Harris, a lawyer and politician based in the United States of America, has written a formal letter to Dorsey in hopes that the Twitter CEO will consider suspending Trump’s private twitter. In Harris’s letter, she writes that the president has violated multiple rules of Twitter. In particular, she states that Trump’s tweets that threaten civil war constitutes “blatant threats that put people at risk and our democracy in danger. No user, regardless of their job, wealth, or stature should be exempt from abiding by Twitter’s user agreement, not even the president of the United States” (Mahdawi, 2019). Despite the validity of the evidence that Harris has provided regarding Trump’s violation of twitter rules, the platform has once again decided to turn a blind eye by stating that, “Blocking a world leader from Twitter or removing their controversial Tweets would hide important information people should be able to see and debate” (Twitter Inc., 2018). Twitter currently, “allows politicians to break its terms of service, arguing that it’s “in the public interest” for users to see those tweets” (Nunez, 2019). This provokes the question of whether public or influential figures should be given “special privileges” regarding exercising their freedom of speech. Twitter argues that the platform should not be held accountable for the protection of free of speech in any case. In Trump’s scenario, the platform argues that, “banning a world leader wouldn’t silence them. If Trump was forced off Twitter he could just go on Fox News every day. He could hold more press conferences” (Mahdawi, 2019).

            There are various opinions associated with Harris’s letter versus Twitter’s response. We could argue that silencing trump could be the beginning of excessive censorship, because we should not silence opposing opinions to appease a group of individuals. Suspending his Twitter account will not change his opinions and pending political courses of action. We are effectively putting on blindfolds and choosing to only see opinions what agrees with our own ideology. However, one could also argue that Twitter has failed to keep its promise on applying the same set of twitter rules to every user. Refusing to suspend Trump further emphasizes the biased operation of the platform, and it suggests that individuals with smaller followings do not hold the same privileges as public figures with large followings. In conclusion, social media platforms are designed to favor the opinions of those who are influential.

References:

Mahdawi, A. (2019, October 4). Should Trump be Banned from Twitter. The Guardian. Retrieved from

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/oct/04/should-trump-be-banned-from-twitter

Twitter Inc. (2018, January 5). World Leaders on Twitter. Retrieved from

https://blog.twitter.com/en_us/topics/company/2018/world-leaders-and-twitter.html

Nunez, M. (2019, October 2). Kamala Harris Tells Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey To Suspend President Donald Trump’s Account In New Letter. Forbes. Retrieved from

https://www.forbes.com/sites/mnunez/2019/10/02/kamala-harris-tells-twitter-ceo-jack-dorsey-to-suspend-president-donald-trumps-account-in-new-letter/#4fbc0b816648

HG.org Legal Resources. (n.d.). What Type of Speech is Not Protected by the First Amendment. Retrieved from

https://www.hg.org/legal-articles/what-type-of-speech-is-not-protected-by-the-first-amendment-34258