As the issue of food deserts increase in Tucson. The community is very active in finding alternative ways for members to find healthy, accessible food.
Live Tweets of the Tucson’s Earth Day Parade.
As I continue learning about Journalism and all the areas of it, I recently attempted my first live tweeting experience. I chose live tweeting over Facebook live, because I feel like I would have been awkward recording myself. I feel like tweeting is more of an updating thing as people keep checking to see if something has changed versus Facebook Live is more of a constant feed.
For my live tweeting event, I went to Tucson’s Earth Day parade on April 22. As I walked around downtown Tucson for the event, I visited the different booths and learned about the information they had to offer. The first few tweets were rough. I began by updating my followers about what I saw, but the tweets were very simple. I thought it would be a good idea to use photos to help give readers a better idea of what was happening at the event. As the event continued on, I started getting more comfortable with writing about the event, and I think my tweets reflected that. They had more enthusiasm and exciting tone to them. When I was walking around the event, and talking to people at their booths. The people began telling me more about the products and business they worked for and supported. I had a rough time being able to tweet that information as I can only use 140 words, so I found myself using a smaller amount of words and using photos to complete the ideas I was discussing. I also found that using the same hashtag with every tweet brought back the same audience. As my first “live tweeting” experience wasn’t the best, I think it’s an important skill for a journalist to have. I want to be more confident in using this tool. Whether the tweeting is for a live event like this parade, or a breaking news story people depend on quick and fast news that is easily accessible to them.
For the past year and a half, the app called Boomerang has helped fill our Instagram feeds with quick repeating videos. Before Boomerang was the big use on social media the app Phhhoto was popular. I began using Phhhoto about six months before Boomerang was released and became a huge fan of the app. Although Phhhoto shows similarities to Boomerang, allowing users to make a quick moving image of whatever action they wish to capture, the way it is published makes it unique. Phhhoto is its own social media site allowing for a feed and profile on the app. Unlike Boomerang which gives users the ability to record their material and then later uploading it to Instagram or another site of their choice.
I have tested out both app, and found Phhhoto to be a more interactive app. The app was updated daily with a new filter allowing for people to be creative with their posts. From basic black and white to colorful sparkle filled designs the app gave options to all. This increase my use within the app as I was always eager to see the daily updates. Another fun feature that is given in this app is the ability to make group chats. Much like Snapchat, Phhhoto let users share their posts in groups allowing for more interaction. Over the past few months I have noticed the use of this app has died down a lot. I myself have found that I have not been using the app as often as I used to. Recently, I’ve been getting lots of notifications from the app, pushing their new updates. I believe with society’s use of Boomerang, it has cut Phhhoto’s business and they are pushing to get back the users they may have lost over the past year. Persoanlly, I am not a fan of Boomerang as it doesn’t have much to offer beside the the video making, but I am always interested in seeing how creative people become with posts using the app. I think its important to test out new applications and compare them to others I have to help me decide which app works better for myself. Although I don’t post much instant video media anymore, if continued to I would still be using Phhhoto’s services.
Over the past few months Facebook has developed new features to get users more active. One of these features is the 360 videos, within this user are able to record video that allows the viewers to see what is fully around the user. Personally, I think the concept of this is very interesting. I have seen this used in multiple ways to showcase sports teams, historical landscapes, and has also been used as a news outlet to those who can’t physically be there to see whatever is being filmed. With where I have seen usage, these videos have been beneficial to those who produce them.
One video that I really enjoyed was when the UA Alum Facebook group did a 360 video of Mckale center during a basketball game. It featured the intro before the game starts when the lights are going off and the team is being introduced. It features the crowd cheering and includes the student section. Viewers are able to see the exciting atmosphere that UA’s basketball team brings to the school. Another example of the 360 videos that I enjoyed were the ones published by ABC News Tour of Times Square. The video shows New York City during the blizzard. This video received over 18.3 million views and got great feedback. Viewers were able to react and comment on the different parts of the video.
Facebook has taken this new application and made it easier than ever for user to have. Recently it was announced that a 360 app for Samsung Gear VR would be released. The Samsung device is a head set that allow you to attach your phone and play/ record video of your surroundings. I think this is strategic as it will allow Facebook to connect with more people and gain interest for the application. With the progress in making this application more assessable it has the potential to bring it many more new users.
For my final project, I want to focus on the Food Desert in South Tucson. In Tucson, portions of the city are in far distance from grocery stores and resources to get fresh produce have become increasingly difficult. These communities tend to have a lower income rate adding on to the issue of being in a food desert. This has become a larger issue over the past five years, “According to a recent U.S. Census Bureau American Community Survey (ACS), the Tucson metro area ranks as the sixth-poorest Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) in the nation with an overall poverty rate of 20.4%.” As this problem has become a bigger issue, the Tucson community has come together working to find solutions for families in these situations. My story is going to be about the effects on families who are living in this food desert, and the programs that benefit them. My goal is to talk to Daquin Tong. She is a professor at UA, and studies the Geography of Food. Tong has done many studies covering the topic of Arizona’s food deserts. She also teaches a variety of classes on the topic as well. I want to get in contact with different programs like, Market on the Move, the Seed Library and community gardens. The company Market on the Move, is run out of Phoenix and Tucson. With the donation of $10 people can get up to 60 pounds of fresh produce. Pima County also has a program called the Seed Library. The Seed Library allows for people to use seeds as create a garden at home. I want to be able to hear from the families, and how they got involved in using these programs. I would also like to hear the point of view of how these programs were started and how they’ve expanded in the Tucson communities over the years. I’m also hoping to find another professor at UA to speak with to get more than one perspective. I think this will be interesting because its not something many usually think about. Most of us are fortunate enough to not be put in situations like this, and hearing these stories can bring attention to this issue.