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Thursday, January 27, 2011

"Catfish" Final

People say a picture can tell a thousand words. The film, Catfish, proves that a picture can also tell a thousand lies. Catfish is a gripping story that will have you on the edge of your seat. The scariest part: it’s a true story. This documentary follows a Facebook user, Nev, who spends eight months of his life living a horror story. The plot of the movie is frighteningly realistic, and the twists will leave you with an unsettled stomach.
            Catfish was filmed in 2007 by New Yorkers Ariel Schulman, and Henry Joost. Ariel’s brother, Nev, was the subject of this movie. Nev, a professional photographer, had recently become internet companions with a family out in Ishpeming, Michigan. Ariel and Henry began filming the evolving relationship between Nev and this family, when things took a tragic turn for the worse. The filmed released in September of 2010, and was initially viewed as a “Mockumentary,” because audiences thought the story was too good to be true. However, Ariel and Nev swear that the film is 100 percent truth, and displayed every event just as it happened. The movie has gotten numerous great reviews, including a rating of 82% on Rotten Tomatoes.
            The movie begins with a summary of the relationship between Nev and this family. Nev’s photography skills caught the eyes of Abby Faccio, and her mother Angela Wesselman. Nev was contacted on Facebook by Abby, who was eight years old at the time, and an established painter. Abby told Nev how interested she was in his artwork, that she wanted to make water color paints of some of his stuff. The relationship progressed between Nev and this family, and Nev started to grow interest in Abby’s sister, Megan. Everything seemed to be going well, until something fishy (no pun intended) happened.  The relationship between Nev and Megan took a turn for the worse, as Nev traveled out to Ishpeming to learn about this mysterious family.
            The key moment of this movie occurred when Nev, Henry, and Ariel were in Vail, Colorado. Megan had been showing Nev “her” songs for a while on Facebook, and Nev wanted to test her ability to record quickly. He asked Megan to send him a song, and within twenty minutes Megan had recorded and sent the song to Nev. He was astonished at how great the song sounded, and what a good voice Megan had. Then he looked up the title of the song on Youtube, and saw that it was the exact same song, exact same voice, and exact same length. When Nev  confronted Megan about it, she got very defensive and stuck with her claim that it really was her. This struck a chord with Nev, and he knew he had to get to the bottom of this secretive family. He packed up his suitcase in Vail and headed to Ishpeming with his brother and Henry, where he discovered the truth about the family.
            I would definitely recommend this movie to anyone, especially people on Facebook. I think it is especially realistic and shocking to Facebook users, because many people have received Friend Requests from people they don’t know, and this movie really exposes the alarming effects of allowing strangers to look at your page. I have never been a fan of documentaries, because I think they are extremely boring. However this film is an exception, because the story is almost too good to be true. It is filled with cliff-hangers, and ties waiting to be fixed. I would give it a four star rating, and call it a “must-see” for anyone on a social networking site.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

"Catfish" Day 2

Angela is creepy. I have a hard time believing this story is even 100 percent true, because it could make for the plot line in a good movie. I am amazed how Angela could pull it off for as long as she did. She would have needed multiple voices, multiple cell phone numbers, a ton of facebook accounts, and a weak guilty conscience. Angela basically created her own network, on a network. I can't even begin to imagine how Nev felt. He was most likely embarrassed, annoyed, betrayed, and even more. I feel really bad for him, but it made for a good movie, and great story.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

"Catfish" Day 1 Journal

I am very intrigued by this movie so far. I think it is a prime example of everything WRONG with facebook. I was always told not to get a facebook because of some of the crazy characters lurking on the internet, whom may appear to be different than they actually are. I think Nev's line was hilarious when he said "I wonder if I have really been talking to a guy this whole time." I mean he was obviously being sarcastic, but it's also kind of true. If you don't know one of your facebook "friends" in person.. you really don't know who you're talking to. It's so easy to look up pictures on Google Images, make them into an album, and hide behind your computer screen. It's scary, but intriguing. I'm mad I have to wait another day to continue this movie...

Monday, December 20, 2010

Short Story Project Information

I'm going to write a short autobiography about myself, as a senior student, getting ready for college.
I am going to do this on classtools website

Friday, December 17, 2010

Social Media Paper

“Newspaper… what’s that?” I feel like someday I will be having this conversation with my grandchildren, and they’ll think that I’m as old as a dinosaur if I say that news used to come to one’s doorstep every morning in a plastic bag. The internet, and social media, is going to be the inevitable extinction of many of the luxuries we know right now. For example, having a face-to-face conversation. With the implication of “Facebook Chat” and “Instant Messaging” it is truly more convenient to socialize with your friends on the internet. You don’t even have to go on dates in person anymore. Thanks to sites like eHarmony, the “awkward silences” that occur during a first date are no longer present. With all the benefits of social media, I think that the World tries to ignore the potential dangers that accompany an internet movement.
            One huge potential danger is cyber bullying. “Cyber bullying” is a broad term that describes any emotional abuse that occurs on an internet outlet. I’ve seen this numerous times on my Facebook News Feed, or even on Twitter. The internet is a great place for bullies to freely express their hatred for others, which often happens. Because the school can’t view the activity, these bullies often get away with it. I’ve heard of numerous suicides that have occurred due to cyber bullying of children.
            Another problem that can happen with a social movement is hacking. An elite group of intelligent vigilantes hold the capability to “hack” into another person’s computer server, and steal their information off of the internet. Some of this information includes people’s credit card number, social security information, and house addresses. All of these can lead to great danger and destruction in innocent persons’ lives.
            I don’t think the internet movement is all bad though, at all. Thanks to news moving to the internet, it is a lot easier to access from the comfort of one’s house. Also, opposed to a newspaper, on the internet you can choose what you read, and there are numerous outlets which will prevent you with information most essential to you. For example, if you want celebrity news, you don’t want to page all through a newspaper to find it. Instead, you can simply go on Google.com, and type in the search engine “Brittney Spears’ Cocaine Incident” and numerous tabs will come up from News Weekly, Time.com, ET, and more! It’s really a terrific concept if you think about it.
            Another great asset that accompanies social media is the ability to collaborate. For example, if you have a group project due in your English class and there is no time for everyone to meet, they can go to a website and all post their portions of the project on there in a collaborative setting. There are limitless possibilities to the expansion of social media, especially in its ability to allow for collaboration and accessibility.
            I think that if the internet is used correctly, then it can be a great tool for almost everyone. I do, however, think that there are a lot of dangers lurking behind every URL that you type into the search bar. For that reason, I think it’s necessary for new users of the internet to take a course which will guide them through the journey of social media, and social networking.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Blogging Free-write

I think the idea of blogging is great. It's basically an in-depth version of facebook status or "tweet." The only way that blogging really works though, is if you have followers. WHICH is not an easy task. Many teens, especially, are very disinterested in the idea of a blog because it sounds kind of stupid. Writing for no audience? But the truth is that anytime anyone writes, it's mainly for themselves. J.K. Rowling didn't write her first Harry Potter story for her audience, because she didn't even have an audience at the time. Writing can take you any place you want to go, and allows you to develop characters who can live the lives that you can only dream of. Writing makes you God. You can give life,and you can take life away. Also, you have the ability to dictate how any story, or anecdote, ends. I think every teenager, adult, granparent, WHOEVER should get into blogging. It's a great way of venting, and it allows your voice to be heard/read. Who knows, maybe your small-time blog will gain notoriety as you develop more interesting, or controversial, blog posts. It's cool to have your own website. I think anybody who has interest in the internet, writing, or both, should definitely get into the art of blogging. It's very quick and easy to set up a Blogger account, especially if you already have a Twitter or GMail username. I hope that my blog will someday gain some followers, and maybe people will catch on to the trend of blogging. If not, I guess I'll be writing to myself for the next couple months.... that's cool, too.