• Amy Burvall

#winterwondergram: Patterns and Diversions

An Instagram Perspective Story

I’ve been doing a lot of experimenting with hashtags and social media lately, particularly because:

1. Finding stories with data intrigues me

2. I like the serendipity aspect

3. I want to further explore McLuhan’s “medium is the message/massage” concept

One blog post I’d recommend is this one by Clive Thompson:

“The Tag Is the Soul of the Internet”

He addresses the McLuhan/Innis notion of bias in communication:

“That how a medium functions is far more interesting and powerful than the content that travels over it.”

So I decided to take some screen shots with my iPad. First I tried “melancholy”, then “Eiffel Tower”, but I wasn’t impressed. There seemed to be few photos and much “artistic typography” (you know, all those filtered clever quotes and quips Tumblr is full of).

Given the recent storm in the Northeast, I settled on


I took screen shots and sent them to iPhoto on my laptop to create a slideshow, primarily because I wanted music.

I ended up having to upload that onto YouTube, which is a tad anticlimactic being so short.

Then I tried Vuvox (Express) – an old standby favorite. Unfortunately, I couldn’t attach music, as one can in Vuvox Collage, and it was impossible to embed in WordPress (what IS that?). So here’s the link (it’s Flash, so use Chrome or Firefox):

(click on the images to enlarge)


Just as I was posting this I found Mashable’s collection of Vine App videos depicting the story of the NE blizzard

For several years now I’ve used Tag Galaxy , which is completely mesmerizing. It narrows tags down if you like, and expanding each image will take you to its Flickr home page.

So what perspectives can you see? What story, if any, does this tell?

Can we rely on tags to give us any insight into humanity?

#winter #Vuvox #Instagram #McLuhan #hashtags

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