Do viral trends play too big a role in our society

Through the last ten years there have been a lot of trends to come and go especially during the rise of social media. People find it imperative to preform trends they see on social media, video it and then proceed to put it back on social media there in hence making it viral. Some of these trends include the bottle flip, ALS ice bucket challenge, Mannequin challenge, the bird box challenge, the cinnamon challenge, kylie Jenner lips, tide pods, the running man challenge the drake car dance challenge and many, many more unnamed challenges.

These challenges and viral trends have shaped modern pop culture through the influence of social media. “ the ALS ice bucket challenge changed my life because my grandma was diagnosed with ALS and it helped her with her trials- Devin forester” any kid with an active social media account is aware of the current trends and challenges taking place in the world.

Are some of these challenges hurting society though? Last year a movie off Netflix became very popular called “birdbox” the movie requires people to remain blindfolded or they will die. This hit social media as the “birdbox challenge” people were attempting to do things blindfolded. One girl even went as far to drive blindfolded and ended up totaling her car. Thankfully no one was injured in the event, but this is just a prime example of how social media trends can influence our lives greatly, some even being dangerous. Most are harmless however and very enjoyable and I don’t expect them to stop any time soon.

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Journalism Personal Semester Review: A class like none other

This story, as well as the rest of the stories I’ve written this semester, are all a part of the journalism class I was randomly put into at the beginning of this year. I was confused when I saw it on my schedule at the start of the year, since I hadn’t ever signed up for it. In all honesty, the only reason I didn’t drop the class was because I saw that Mr. Frey was the teacher, and his English class sophomore year was awesome. Even though I pretty much knew nothing about journalism, I decided I would stay in the class and see what it was all about.

I soon found out that in Journalism the main task we have is writing stories to be posted on the davis high news website. I thought that was pretty cool, and got really excited when I found out that we pretty much work on our own time, and as long as we get our stories done we’re chilling. That was exactly the kind of vibe I was looking for in a class for senior year.

You don’t always get to write about whatever you want, in fact most weeks your stories are assigned to you. You write about many different things varying from school sports to teacher spotlights, dance asking ideas to movie reviews. Even if you’re not writing about something you want, it’s still super chill and it makes writing fun. I’m really glad I didn’t drop the class at the start of the year. I highly recommend taking journalism if you’ve been considering it. This is my final story, so peace out. You’re not your mistakes.

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Are You an Idiot if You Procrastinate?

Some would say it’s smart to constantly stress about your schoolwork. To always make sure you’re ahead of schedule and be extremely OCD about your grade. My philosophy is why stress for an entire term and have anxiety for months when you could just enjoy 98 percent of the term and then stress for the final week about your grades?

Plus, on top of it it’s kind of exhilarating and rush to just slip in their last second. It is interesting to see how much you can do in a limited amount of time. I know it sounds crazy and weird, but I believe people do their best thinking in crunch time.

I hate stressing about things I’ve always been a laid-back carefree type of person until its necessary than I take it seriously. I have multiple friends and relatives that have constant anxiety because they are always stressing about being on time and the next step. They don’t just stop, slow down and take a minute to enjoy life. Their lives are consumed by being perfect. So much so that they forget to enjoy life and realize that life isn’t perfect.

Life in whole is procrastinating if you really think about it. Since the moment we are born on this earth we are procrastinating that judgment day, we are getting by and living in the moment trying to avoid that final moment. Life is so precious so why not procrastinate and hang onto it until the very last moment. Procrastinate almost everything in this life, hold onto it until you can’t hold on anymore. Because honestly what’s the fun of being on time? All it means is your done with one thing now you have to find something else to stress about. Procrastinate life and enjoy life.

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Dungeons and Dragons: The Long Awaited Resurrection of the Nerds Favorite Game

“Roll for initiative” the dungeon master says, as she places down a miniature of an ancient white dragon. The table explodes in raucous yells and anxious noises as the party realizes the trouble they have stumbled in.

Dungeons and dragons has been around for a long time now, ever since the fortuitous meeting of Gary Gygax and Dave Arneson in 1972. Ever since that day, the lives of nerds have been changed forever.

However, dungeons and dragons has not always been in the good graces of society as it is now. Every wizard and barbarian of the early days of dungeons and dragons remembers the “Satanic Scare” of the 80s and 90s, when every dungeons and dragons player was considered to worship Lucifer.

Those were the dark days of dungeons and dragons, when players had to hide in basements and never mentioned their favorite past time.

Since the 2010s however, it’s as if the world has flipped their opinions on the titular role playing game. Suddenly when people look around you can see live-streamed games, Wizards of the Coast sponsored events, and people spending all their time playing this wonderful game.

Last year alone, a single group of dungeons and dragons players became so popular that when they started a Kickstarter for their own animated series about their game, they managed to raise 11.5 million dollars, breaking the record for a crowdfunded television shows.

As much as the idea of nerds has changed in the past 20 years, it is hard to say that dungeons and dragons has wallowed in its previous anonymity. So roll for initiative everyone, and be prepared for the decade of dungeons and dragons.

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Is technology ruining our youth

I will be one of the first to admit that I have an addiction to my phone and I can guarantee almost 90 percent of people will say the same thing. Its almost as if it’s extension of our bodies. Like a vital organ that we are reliant on. We become scared if its not with us and we fear what will happen if it dies.

The focus issues it has created are increasing rapidly. I notice myself checking my screen every 5 minutes hoping for a new notification to pass my time and make me feel accepted by a digital society. I can’t even Watch a full tv show or movie anymore without continuously looking at my phone. Like I said our bodies have latched onto these devices and become reliant on them like a drug we can’t live without.

I see it in the younger generations coming up. They are being raised from birth on a technological device because its easier for a parent to put an iPad in front of their children then to actually take care of them. I barely see my little sister anymore because she locks herself in her room on a tablet all day. Children are losing social skills, creativity and outdoor fun that we used to be raised on, new parents are learning bad habits to start a family, teenagers struggle with insecurities, depression, bullying, and loving their self-image more than ever before.

Society’s opinions and decisions are being influenced immensely by social media and modern technology. We idolize people through social media who are no better than us. Technology is a part of rapidly growing future that this world has. But if we don’t learn how to adapt and grow but also maintain and not forget the old qualities that make us human. I’m afraid the word human will no longer mean what it used to.

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Is music losing its meaning in today’s modern society?

Music has been around since nearly the beginning of humanity. It has brought people together, made people cry, made people scream, laugh, love, sad, dance, it has made people live and I truly believe without it our species wouldn’t be the same. It is expression and art in its purest and most elegant form. But is it dying with our new era of rap, EDM, dubstep, screamo and other genres that wouldn’t be considered quite as elegant?

In some ways I believe so, but I’m also a sucker for good lyrics and you don’t find many of those in modern popular songs now days, so I’m a little biased. Rap used to be far better in my opinion. Rappers used to have rhythm and talent and actually rhyme about things that made sense and meant something. And now I just don’t see how a rapper today making up words that rhyme with drugs, girls, cars and guns, barely being able to understand what he’s saying and then throwing a sick beat into it is art. Its catchy and I enjoy it but I don’t think its talent.

Then you have EDM and dubstep that just sounds like metal scraping against metal and children screaming. But what happened to the Billy Joel’s, Beatles, Tupac, notorious BIG, Frank Sinatra, the people that actually cared about the music they produced and not the clout they had or the money they made. Our society is ruining music by idolizing performers and entertainers and not respecting artists anymore. Real artist don’t want to make music anymore because no one will listen to them.

However, I can’t judge because I am known to listen to pop culture music as well. And like I said music is expression of one’s feelings and how someone interprets their expression. So, if it makes you happy then its art. Music will continue to change throughout time I don’t think it will ever leave us. But I think I will always believe that music was better in the past and had a lot more meaning behind its production back then, then music does now.

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Voting Participation

“​Taxation without Representation.”​

A term heard in every history class and Revolutionary War documentary. The term itself is simply a reference to a government taxing a people without allowing those people to be represented within that government. Despite the short catchphrase, the words were part of a spark that grew to be the fiery determination of the colonies during the Revolutionary War. The many groups and people who made up the Founding Fathers of the USA understood that the best way to have control over one’s circumstances was to have a say in the laws and regulations of government. The desire for a voice in government, for representation, not only sparked the Revolutionary War, but also the founding of a new nation. A new nation predicated on the idea that government should be not only for the people but of the people. Despite these efforts, people don’t always see voting as an important influence.

CNN Politics reported that the 2016 election had only 55% voter turnout, stating it was the lowest turnout for a presidential election in 20 years. In comparison to 2018, NPR reported that the midterms had 47% voter turnout. Low, but the highest midterm voter turnout since 1966. Why do only half of eligible voters, exercise the right that others have fought so hard for? In general, people can guess from a variety of reasons as to why someone might not vote. The Mass Vote Organization, an agency that promotes voters’ rights and encourages people to vote in local and national elections, reported data essential in understanding how US citizens don’t realize the power of the vote. They reported that gaps in voter participation, correlates with widening wage gaps, reduced youth education and opportunity, and increasingly polarized politics. They continue to explain, saying that impoverished or minority neighborhoods are often left uninformed, and unreached by the candidates that would represent them.

These statistics can seem disheartening, but it’s important for everyone, especially seniors who are turning 18, to take the initiative to vote regardless of the circumstances of the area. With the 2020 election coming up within the year, the overwhelming amount of negative news, current events, and political debates can seem overwhelming. However, it’s important to practice understanding and interacting with the government system now, because Voter participation is a learned activity. And even if the individual vote may not seem so influential, the attitude goes on to influence the culture and region around, growing to be a government of the people, for the people.

 

 

 

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A Parents Guild To Helping Your Child Get Better Grades

Parents all want their children to perform well in every subject and bring home an impressive report card. Unfortunately, the reality is that during your child’s K-12 years there are high chances that they will obtain a few disappointing grades. How parents handle bad grades is very important as this can affect your child’s future approach to studying. A bad report card can lead to an emotional situation for both the child and the parents. Here are some tips on how to react if your child brings home a bad report card.

First, don’t lose your temper with your child, talk to them. It is alright to let your child know that you are disappointed and that you perhaps feel they could have done better. It is imperative to discuss this calmly with your child and seek their opinion. You do not want to leave your child humiliated or ashamed.

Next, don’t rush them. Chances are your child will already be aware that the report contains some red flags. Once you have absorbed the news takes time to think about it all. It is important not to react instantly while emotions may be running high. If you are worried, tell your child that you need to look carefully at it and then you will discuss with them. Be calm and they will be too.

Discuss a realistic game plan with your child to try and improve their grades. Don’t punish for poor grades, it is better to try and identify problem areas and work with your child. Be realistic; a child who is obtaining D and C grades is unlikely to be able to get an A for the next report card. Improvement will likely be gradual but praise that improvement. The trend is what matters in this situation, not the score. Your child will be counting on you to help them out. Follow the above points and if need be, do not be put off to ask for help from the school. Remember children do not want to fail so help them get back on track.

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A Day In The Life Of A Magician

Have you ever seen a street performer or a magician do an amazing illusion that caused you to question life itself? Although that was an overstatement you may have said “How did you do that?” but what exactly is “MAGIC”.

Magicians spend hours at a time to practice and master these skills and sleights. However, wannabee magicians use fairly easy tricks that require no skill or mastery at all. These tricks will allow a small shock and some questioning, but what makes professionals so much better than unskilled people.

Magicians use sleights and card control as well as gimmicks and other items to create illusions that wow and impress even other magicians. Coin magic is known as one of the hardest types of magic, this is because it requires the most skill and practice to master. although some card tricks can be extremely impressive like color changes and jogs as well as more advanced methods, these require less skill than manipulating a coin that is extremely small and difficult to move. Magicians (like me) love to see people’s reactions and constantly carry coins and cards for close up magic in a slow time.

The reactions are the best part, being able to confuse people and make them think that what you did is impossible.
The best types of magic are street and close up magic, these require the most skill and preparation to be able to get the best reactions ever. Close up magic is the hardest form because the magician uses both coins and cards in extremely close quarters. This means that you can both see what they are doing and call them out if you see it. Street magic is another form of close up but it uses everyday objects and can get super cool reactions from people. The reason that magicians do what they do best is for the reactions.

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Are Movies Getting Worse?

It seems like the Cinematic Industry is having a decline in creativity, at least from a personal perspective. It just seems that they’re running out of ideas and have become desperate, so they make infinite movie series of movies people love. My grandpa always asks when Transformers 86 is coming out, but it is true they just seem to keep adding to series of original movies that people love to make money. It’s because we love the originals, it doesn’t matter if the other ones are bad! And that’s while they will keep doing it and keep making a very large profit from it. For example “Pirates of the Caribbean, Transformers, Harry Potter, Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, Mission Impossible, Rocky, Rambo, Jurassic Park, Terminator, etc.….”

Now I’ll be the first to admit that I’m a sucker for most those movies especially Star Wars. I’m ecstatic every time a new one comes out, but after every release of a new movie, I come away disappointed which leads me to my next question. “Are all these continuous movies tarnishing the legacy of the original movies?”

As much as I hate to say it I believe so. I mean what ever happened to creativity and broadening the horizon and creating a cinematic masterpiece that the world has never seen. Why are people so scared to make something new, to introduce the world to a new idea on screen. To make new art not just replicate the old.

That’s the other issue is that because of the lack of creativity directors are beginning to just remake old movies. It’s the same story only through a different lens. Trying to create a nostalgic feeling for movie fans, but they just need to leave them untouched, let the classics stay classic, they’re like a fine wine, they get better with age. But at the end of the day people will just conform and stick to what’s safe comfortable and makes them the most money. Disney is a prime example, one of the largest movie producing and grossing companies in the world and all they do is remake movies that appeal to mass culture and especially children, and it makes them billions.

All I want is a brave producer to go against the social norm and create something different, something new and unique that we’ve never seen. Just like the producers of the old days that revolutionized the film industry because of their creativity! They didn’t care what the people thought and how much money it would make they just wanted to make art. Our culture is lacking that currently and needs it back immensely.

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