Blocked By A Racist

Someone I know only online just asked me if he would be thought of as a racist if he thought some Africans / people of Africa heritage were ok but that some of them are still more monkey than the rest of us!!!! This guy actually said that.

I was like “Excuse me!! That is not something you say” but he then proceeded to send a pic of a football player and typed “Look at this guy! Look at his head especially his face and his mannerism. Don’t tell me this guy isn’t part gorilla or some other species!”

I was blown away but then all I could say was that humans are basically less hairy apes. We chimps and other monkeys all had evolved from a common ancestor.

To that he started abusing me. I checked his Twitter profile page – AH! Creationist. I had hit a nerve. I abused him back and told him to shove his opinions up his arsehole! I am now blocked by him and feeling rather proud of myself!

4 Ways To Verify Information On The Internet

The internet is most people’s main source of entertainment and information, and while it is useful, it may not always be accurate. There are some topics, such as health, that require some research before going ahead to use the information. And especially in these times, it is important that you verify whatever you see on the internet before applying it in your daily life. So here are a few ideas to ensure the information your assimilating is accurate. This will also go a long way to help you prevent information overload.

1. Check the credentials

Most internet posts have the author’s name or come from an organization. And because it is the internet doesn’t mean what someone says they are is who they really are. What you can do is to research the author’s name or the organization that’s giving out that information. You can start by looking into their background, by looking through their About Us page. Also, look out for things like experience and education to determine if they have enough industry expertise to speak on the topic. Apart from that, you should also consider the URL for whether it is a commercial site or a non-profit website. This will let you know the purpose of the site so that you can decide whether or not the information will be useful to you.

2. Check the timeliness

As the world evolves, new things come out every day, and this makes it crucial that the information you’re assimilating is still relevant. There are very few things that stay the same over the years, and if you’re searching for a topic like health, then it is important that the information isn’t too outdated. So look at the publishing date on the content you’re reading to make sure that it is current.

3. Verify the links

First of all, there is some content that should not be opinion pieces. Topics on health, for example, should come with credible sources that back any claims. So whatever you’re reading, make sure that whatever information you’re getting from the internet has these sources. Take your time to go through these sources to make sure they are also from credible sources. For topics on health, it will be better if it is from industry professionals, whether individuals like Patrick Conway or organizations like the WHO.

4. Compare with other sources

If you want the best information, then you shouldn’t have to rely on one source. So whenever you’re searching for information on the internet, be sure to research elsewhere as well. Compare all other sites that also produce content on the topic you’re interested in and double-check against each other. You can go a step further and go off the internet to a library or print publications. If the information you find is consistent with others, then there is a good chance that it is accurate.

The internet can be a great source of information and knowledge, and indeed there are a lot of posts day in and day out. But it is your duty to ensure that your information you’re getting is accurate so that you don’t contribute to misleading people.

A Guide To Cash Flow For Freelancers

Not everyone is cut out for the 9 to 5. Not everyone flourishes in an office environment. There are many, including those whose skills are creative, who find the traditional career ladder stifling. If you’ve worked for years under the corporate yoke and found that it has resulted in your being taken for granted by your employer and becoming bored by your work and disillusioned by your employer, you are far from alone. These intelligent, talented and dynamic individuals often thrive not on the traditional career path, but on the path of the freelancer.

Think of it!

The freedom and autonomy to choose your own projects and working hours. The chance to make good money from home (or anywhere else) doing what you love. There’s definitely a certain satisfaction to be gained from sitting in your home office, sipping your coffee at leisure while legions of bedraggled commuters scramble to work outside your window. Freelancing can lead you to living your dream life. But being a freelancer comes with its own challenges, too. You can never afford to take your clients for granted and need to keep hustling for new work as you grow your personal brand. You’re a small business and need to think like one. And one of the many considerations that small businesses like yours need to keep in mind is maintaining a healthy cash flow.

Why cash flow is so important for freelancers

When you’re a freelancer, you don’t have the luxury of a steady paycheck like your salaried friends. You probably won’t know exactly how much you’ll earn next month, nor will you even be guaranteed that you’ll have an income of any kind 6 months from now. To be a freelancer is to live in a constant state of uncertainty where your income is concerned. At the same time, you’ll still have personal bills to pay and business expenses of all kinds to pay for. Maintaining a healthy cash flow can help you to keep your finances harmonious and make your days much less stressful. Here are some ways in which you can reduce expenses, improve your income and enjoy a profitable future as a freelancer…

Use free stuff

Being a freelancer in the 2020s is a potentially expensive prospect. You may need to invest in the latest technologies and software to give you an edge over your competitors. However, this doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to spend a fortune, especially when it comes to software.

There are all kinds of free programs you can use which do the job just as well (or even better) than their expensive equivalents. For example, copywriters should never spend a penny on MS Word when Google Docs does the job just as well for free. Insightly is just as good as any paid CRMs and Trello can keep you in peak productivity without costing you a red cent. Take a look at some of these awesome free resources for freelancers.

Avoid over-ordering on supplies
When you’re starting out, you’ll want to cover all your bases in terms of business spending. But there’s such a thing as over ordering on supplies like paper, printer ink, pens and pencils etc. If you want to keep costs manageable, you’ll need to master the art of knowing when to order and how much to maximize cash flow. Remember that if you’ve over ordered you may be able to sell your items on to third parties to offset your loss. For instance, you can sell printer ink cartridges as long as they have not been used. If you bought in bulk, you may even find that you turn a profit.

Keep track of your expenses to avoid overpaying on tax

Speaking of supplies, the importance of logging all of your expenses cannot be overstated. Those who are new to freelancing may not be aware just how much they can claim in their business expenses, thus avoiding overpaying on tax. Your new phone, your new tablet or laptop, your business related phone bill and internet expenses, even books and magazines which inform your work may be considered research. An accountant can help you to ascertain which expenses can be claimed and leveraged against your tax liability so that your profits aren’t crippled by a huge tax bill.

However, if you want to avoid excessive costs, you may want to look into your own bookkeeping software. This will ensure that your expenses are properly logged and help to make tax compliance easier. You can even get free accounting tools which make this easier for you.

Don’t be afraid to charge what you’re worth

Of course, managing your cash flow isn’t just about what you’re spending. It’s also about what you’re earning. It’s all-too common for nascent freelancers to start off on the back foot by under-charging for their services. They assume that because they’re new to freelancing that their skills are inherently worth less than those of their more experienced peers. However, this is a fallacy that can hobble your freelancing business. If you start out trying to undercut your competitors on cost, you’ll find it harder to be profitable. You’ll have to do more work for less money and bottleneck your profits. You won’t be able to raise your prices as you get more experienced for fear of alienating your clients. So take the time to research what your competitors are charging and how your work measures up with theirs in terms of quality.

Unless you charge what you’re actually worth, there will always be a bottleneck around your cash flow.

Establish clear guidelines for payment

Finally, one of the greatest frustrations for freelancers is missed or late payment. And the time you spend chasing late payments is all time that you’re not spending on profitable activities. So make sure that you have clear guidelines in place for when and how you expect payment. Leave no ambiguity or wiggle room. Give less scrupulous clients an inch and they’ll take a mile. When you’re getting paid on time, however, cash flow is much easier to manage and project.

Smartphone Games

Do You Spend Too Much Time on Smartphones Playing ‘Stupid Games’?

I never used to. But since 2018 I have been playing a couple of games a lot. One is Real Tennis which I do not play against another player but against the computer or in this case Android. They aren’t stupid games at all and are a lot of fun.

The tennis game is fun but I win all the time now – actually since last year – so it is getting kinda boring. But the other one is awesome. Bowling King is playing against players all over the world and you win chips and you lose chips and after you win a certain number you unlock lanes and special balls and it’s very addictive and exciting, especially when you are winning and are on a streak.

I love the game so much. I’ve been wanting to try out some football games on my phone too but I just haven’t gotten into one yet. Maybe soon.

Prompt from The Learning Network At The New York Times

Utilising The Internet For Entertainment

The internet contains a wealth of entertainment sources that can keep anybody occupied for hours. Often there’s nothing better than cosying up on the sofa with your laptop and some snacks, as the opportunity for fun and exploration is seemingly endless. If you feel as though you haven’t unlocked the internets full entertainment potential and would like to discover some of the best ways that you can utilise the World Wide Web, then read on to uncover the best tips and tricks that you can make the most of today!

Films & TV Shows

The internet is absolutely packed full of amazing different movies and TV shows to watch, from nature inspired adventure around the world to gripping and mind bending seasons that can keep you on the edge of your seat! Whether you choose to utilise your browser to find free sources or pay monthly for popular subscription services to get new releases, there are just so many options to explore.

Connect With People

There are so many ways that you can connect with people online, from using forums to discuss your favourite topics to creating social media accounts to publish your own content and make friends. The internet is available in all parts of the world, and this means that you get the opportunity to connect with each of these locations and potentially make form some relationships across the globe! Just be careful whenever you decide to find friends online, as there are some people with malicious aims that you would be smart in trying to avoid.

Games Galore

Gaming has advanced so dramatically in the past few years, and the sheer number of different games available for you to play online is jaw dropping. From calming farm games in which you cultivate crops to fighting battles that allow you to explore a new world and challenge opponents, there’s just so much for you to experience online. There are flash and non-flash versions of many different games to ensure that you can play whatever device you’re using, so what are you waiting for?!

Learning New Things

The internet contains a wealth of information that you can utilise to learn new things every single day, as it’s so easy to browse the web and uncover reputable sources covering all kinds of topics. Whether you just want to brush up your general knowledge, explore your heritage and local area or become an expert in one specific subject, everything is possible thanks to the availability and accessibility of information online.

Using the internet for entertainment has never been so simple when you are able to make the most of the ideas and concepts detailed above. From watching gripping films and TV shows to connecting with people across the globe, exploring the gaming universe or learning new inspiring information in just a couple of taps – it’s crazy what the internet can do when you are able to utilise all of the different features and platforms. Get online and start searching today!

How To Craft Original & Worthwhile Thoughts Regarding Your Media Diet

We all know that we like a certain movie that everyone else struggles with. You’re thinking of it right now. But it’s not always that we can contextualize and articulate just why we enjoy this content, or what it means to us. To some, that’s fine. It’s not as if everyone has to set themselves up as a cultural critic. But for others, analysis is half the fun whenever absorbing content.

Many read media blogs such as ours, read reviews on Pitchfork, watch YouTubers reviewing the latest video game or reading Roger Ebert’s legacy in regard to film reviews. It might be that crafting original and worthwhile thoughts can be hard to do, but often, it can also help you contribute your own impressions into the void, rather than echoing what someone else thinks.

This is not a life or death issue of course, but it can be that engaging in this exercise gives you motivation to seek out more media, to have your voice heard, and to become more discerning in your tastes. Let us see what this might look like:

Read More Critical Commentary

Sites like ours, Pitchfork, Roger Ebert’s website, or many review offerings can bring you a range of opinions that you appreciate, and some you don’t. It’s important to find writers who can bring the strength of their arguments out and still weave a coherent passage. Following writers you completely agree with can feel nice, but it doesn’t always open you up to the most worthy criticism. We would recommend reading as much as you can, because it will help you understand how critics think. For example, considering Eminem’s best albums may have you in agreement or disbelief, but if the arguments are substantiated, you’ll understand why, and will get something from it.

Post A Review

Post a review for everything you consume. It might be the last movie you saw, the last book you read, or the last video game you completed. When you write a review, even on a private blog that no one will see, you exercise your critical thought process and develop a better sense of your opinions. Over time, you will learn plenty about yourself, and will also be developing your ability to source examples and stay true to your reviewing purpose without conjecture.

Get Out Of Your Comfort Zone

If you’re only someone who watches 20th-century French art films, consider watching Japanese martial arts films. In other words, get out of your comfort zone from time to time, and see what’s happening on the other side of the pond to you. This can help you gain more contextual information regarding the breadth of the industry. Furthermore, this can help you feel more confident about your opinions because they will be textured by an understanding further afield. We expect a professional to have much experience in their field. This means that consuming more varied material could help you to no end here.

With this advice, you are sure to become the personal critic you hope to be.

Netflix Addicts: Here’s Why You’re In Love With TV

Netflix has become a force of nature in recent years, with the era of the subscription going from magazines and pink boxes to television series and movies that we now can’t live without. The list of TV series we each have backed up on our Netflix watchlists is insane, and the local stores are stocked with those TV series’ immortalised on DVD. There have been huge leaps and bounds in television series’, with plenty of development going on. We’ve gone from advert-ridden TV episodes following storylines of comedic duos, to fully immersive experiences that get the watcher going when they’re in front of the screen.  It’s like the TV world is experiencing a third Golden Age, and we are LOVING it.

We have coined the phrase “Netflix and chill” and we make a point of settling in front of Netflix with a pizza at least once a week. We broke through the TV monotony with the quality of the programs that are released in quick succession and we are falling in love with more shows than ever. But why? What is it about Netflix and similar TV subscriptions that have us on the edge of our seats? It’s all about that immersive experience, so let’s talk about that!

We are living in an age of experience. We want more from everything; developing virtual reality and combining our TV and gaming experiences with artificial intelligence. Experience is doing more than information is right now, which is why we are a generation of watchers. Bloggers get fewer views than vloggers. Companies with videos on their websites are doing better than those who don’t. So, it makes sense that we want a more immersive and all-encompassing experience!

We want to dive in and feel the show and the characters every emotion. It’s why immersive theatre is on the rise, and it’s filtered down to our TV viewing pleasure. Immersive theatre is where the audience becomes part of the performance, where the sets are elaborate, and the costumes by Akua Murray Adoboe are exciting and captivating. The result of all of this has filtered to horror movies and TV series like Game of Thrones that bring us all in and make us fall in love, cry, feel the fear – it’s all a part of the experience. Here are some of the reasons we crave more experiences in our TV shows:

Escape

We jump out of our extended hours at work and straight into our Netflix TV list. We put everything else out of the room, and we watch our characters like they’re our best friends and worst enemies, and we do it with our hands clasping our cheeks. The way that we press ourselves into the TV shows that we love pulls us out of our everyday lives and into something entirely different.

Imagination

When you watch some films, you can immediately appreciate the technology and level of detail that has gone into it. Think about the way we respond to Game of Thrones or Stranger Things: we question everything, we enjoy the thrill of exploring a world that has been created entirely with CGI. It gives us the chance to imagine the experience of the actors who had to pretend they flew dragons and slew aliens – but really they were looking at a green screen and an orange on a stick! You can transport yourself to another world with the click of a button

Excitement

More than anything else, we seek excitement, and we want to feel something deep inside. Our love of being overstimulated filters down through every avenue in life, and we want to feel confused, scared, overjoyed. We even want to sob hard with a good weepy to reach the emotions usually numbed down by work!

So, Why Do We Love TV So Much?

Well, there are a lot of answers to this question more than the reasons we love an immersive experience. TV is something so different from what we had in front of us for years, and today, the leading TV shows that really make us binge watch are those that are aimed at a very small target audience. It used to be that TV show writers would write their shows to appeal to a broad audience – well, everyone – but now it’s not the case. Game of Thrones isn’t for everyone (those who don’t like it are wrong), but it’s not written for everyone, which is why it’s so popular! We enjoy the quality and the picture that we get on the wider screen TVs that we buy.

As well as all this, we all love that TV series is now on par with the movies that come out every week. They’re as deep, as exciting and as gripping as the blockbusters, and the number of viewers that TV series now get is proof of how much people fall in love with the experience that TV now offers. We mentioned earlier that this could be a third Golden Age of TV, and here were the first two:

  • 1940 – 1955: I Love Lucy & Perry Mason dominated our TV screens and made us all fall in love with cheeky, comedic characters.
  • 1990-2000: We love the 90s, and the series like NYPD Blue, Moonlighting, and Northern Exposure all dominated the screens.
  • Now: Now? Now we have Mad Men, Breaking Bad, and The West Wing and we are loving.

The 1970s have always been cited as a low point in TV history, and it’s the shows of the Golden Ages that we remember the most. You may not be addicted to the blue-screen technology pushed out by your TV screen, but you would be addicted to the qualities of the shows that you see and fall for. Rustle up the popcorn and order in; TV shows are getting better and better.

Foodies Without Internet

If the Internet disappeared tomorrow, how would you continue to share your love of food?

Perish the thought! How would we let other people know what we are eating for lunch or dinner.

Ah, remember the good ole days where if you ate a great meal, you would only talk about it to the people you happen to be eating it with and perhaps possibly the next day when you went back to school or college or work,  you’d tell you friends about it? But you couldn’t show them the photos of it could you?

So if there were no Facebook, Twitter or Instagram and no internet, the world wouldn’t end for foodies. We would still eat the food we love and enjoy it and tell our friends and family about the awesome places and menu items to eat. I would write about it on a journal atleast. Cameras are still there right, so I can take photos of it and share it in a smaller group.

Prompt from 16 WRITING PROMPTS FOR FOOD BLOGGERS @ Food Bloggers Of Canada

RIP Tardar Sauce AKA Grumpy Cat

Grumpy Cat, the feline famous on the internet for her permanent scowl, has died aged seven, her owners say. A statement says she died on Tuesday following complications from a recent urinary tract infection. The cat from Arizona had “helped millions of people smile”.

Grumpy, whose real name was Tardar Sauce, went viral in 2012 after photographs of her sour expression emerged online. Her image quickly spread as a meme.  According to owner Tabitha Bundesen, her facial expression was caused by feline dwarfism and an underbite. Grumpy Cat travelled the world making television appearances and in 2014 even starred in her own Christmas film.  Madame Tussauds in San Francisco unveiled a waxwork of her in 2015. Her Instagram account has more than two million followers. Grumpy’s face has starred in thousands of memes with many people choosing to share them again after hearing the news of her death.

In 2018, her owners won a $710,000 (£555,000) payout in a copyright lawsuit. Grumpy Cat Limited sued the owners of the US coffee company Grenade for exceeding an agreement over the cat’s image. The company only had rights to use the cat to sell its “Grumppuccino” iced drink, but was also selling other Grumpy products. Ms Bundesen previously worked as a waitress before her beloved pet gained internet stardom. She told the Express newspaper that she quit her job “within days” of Grumpy’s first appearance on social media.

What’s To Blame For Your Netflix Neglect?

In case you haven’t noticed, Netflix is a pretty big deal nowadays. It’s more likely for a household to stream their shows than to watch live television. This streaming platform now enjoys upwards of 150 million subscribers. And, that’s a number which only looks set to rise in coming years. For most of us, a subscription isn’t even a question. Netflix has become second nature and a monthly charge which we don’t even consider.

But, when you think how a Netflix subscription adds up, it’s worth stepping back sometimes. If we’re honest with ourselves, many of us would admit to not using this platform enough to justify the cost. If that’s the case, the good news is that it’s easy enough to turn Netflix off at short notice and pick up your subscription again later.

Of course, that does mean leaving yourself a little out of the loop. The latest Netflix shows do, after all, cause quite the stir and become everyday conversation starters.If you’re worried that you’re wasting money but don’t want to quit altogether, then, you aren’t alone. In truth, many of us neglect our Netflix subscriptions. To help you overcome this problem, we’re going to look at a few of the reasons why you’re falling foul, and what you can do about them.

You’re spending more than you’re watching

Spending more than you’re watching is, by far, the most common Netflix problem. When you first sign up to stream, you may find that there are endless shows you want to get to. But, you’re now at the stage where you probably only stream one or two things a month. If this is the case, it can soon start to feel like you’re paying more than your subscription is worth. This is especially the case when platforms like Amazon offer one-off watching experiences. To get around this, it’s worth working out how much you would need to watch to justify the monthly cost. You don’t need to be exact with this. Still, comparing the value of films or series you watch to prices elsewhere could help you out. The chances are that, even if you think you’re paying over the odds, you’re still saving money with Netflix. That’s because even a box set elsewhere would probably cost more than that subscription fee. When you break things down, you may find that even watching one or two things is worth your while. If you’ve gone a few months without watching anything, you might just need to work to get into the habit. At the very worst, you could pause your subscription until something interesting comes around.

Your internet isn’t up to streaming

There’s nothing more irritating than a buffer symbol on the screen every few seconds. The chances are that this alone stops you from using Netflix as much as you might like. You can’t exactly get into those shows when the action stops every few seconds, can you? The good news is that the buffering circle of doom is usually a sign that your internet isn’t up to streaming. That’s an easy enough issue to fix. All you would need to do is turn to alternatives from companies like Optimum, who offer higher speeds than other internet providers, and get the Netflix seal of approval. This could mean forking out a little extra upfront, but that cost still saves you wasting the money you’re already spending. The moment you take care of this, after all, you can start watching any show you fancy without any buffering in sight. This doesn’t just benefit your Netflix binges, either. Faster internet can help every aspect of your online life, so what are you waiting for?

Your recommendations never appeal

Most of us choose our next shows based off the recommendations Netflix offers. These are supposedly tailored to our tastes to ensure we can always find something else to watch. The trouble is, many people find that their recommendations never appeal. In that case, you’re more liable to switch Netflix off and not look at it again for months. In reality, though, you have more control over your recommendations than you might realize. By rating shows and tailoring your preferences, you pretty much guarantee that Netflix always selects winners. Fail to do these simple things, and you’re never going to get the most for your money. You certainly won’t be able to find shows you love without searching through the back catalog. But, the moment you tell Netflix what you do and don’t like, you could start to find winning watches without any work on your part.

You spend too long listening to Netflix hype

As we mentioned at the start of this post, Netflix shows are now a pretty common conversation go-to. Some options, like Stranger Things, get all the hype. We hear such good things about shows like these that we all head home and start watching. But, as you can guess, these options aren’t going to be to everyone’s tastes. If you only ever take the time to try those hyped shows, then, it’s no wonder that you’re struggling to make the most of Netflix. Admittedly, the hype will sometimes hit the spot for you. More often than not, though, you should block it out and trust your gut. If a show doesn’t sound like your cup of tea, it probably won’t be. Instead of wasting time and money watching, turn to those tailored recommendations from the pointer above.

Netflix and other streaming platforms like it can be a fantastic way to tailor your watching experience. They can also become a wasteful drain on your resources if you aren’t careful. For the most part, taking steps like those above is the best way to get the most for your money. If you’re still finding that Netflix doesn’t suit, though, it might be time to call it quits and try one of the many other options out there. They do say, after all, that variety is the spice of life.

My Mobile Game Of Choice

I don’t play many games online or on my phone. I don’t have any games installed on my laptop. I have a few on my phone but I barely use any of them. But this one is an exception that I do play a few times a week.

Bowling King World League from MiniClip & Bluehole Pnix is an online bowling game where you earn a bunch of chips for each game that you win. You can keep collecting the chips as you play off against players from around the world.

Bowl fantastic alleys around the world: Hollywood, Seoul, Las Vegas, New York, Sydney, Paris & more! Collect over 60 gorgeous bowling balls, custom pins & lanes to show off your class. Real-time, 1 vs 1 multiplayer with superfast matching!

Beat the missions in Challenge Mode to rack up a ton of awesome rewards! Win big on the Slot and Roulette minigames! Over 120 Achievements to unlock as you rise to the top of the Rankings! And they have multi Language support : English, Spanish, Portuguese, French, German, Italian, Russian, Turkish, Japanese, Chinese and Korean.

I can spend hours on it during the week and the weekend. You can buy chips, balls or pins among others using online transactions as well. It’s fun.

Why Online Study Could Boost Your Career

Adding more strings to your bow is always a good thing. We should seek throughout the whole course of our careers to continue our education, as it’s the way to make sure we keep growing, challenging ourselves and developing vital skills. However, there are some significant barriers to keep studying for a lot of us. If we have full-time jobs, careers and families, it’s not possible to uproot everything and go back to student life. That is exactly where online study has been booming over the past decade. Offering flexible courses which involve distance learning that you can fit around existing commitments, the chance is now there to gain the skills you need to advance your career, in a way that suits your life – sometimes even on your mobile phone.

Location, Location, Location

With postgraduate studies and things like business school in particular, the course you choose to take is likely to be highly specific rather than generalist. That means that you need to more carefully select the right fit, one that will truly enhance your career goals. In past, the right course for you would often be found at only a handful of institutions – which may not have been located anywhere near your home, family or job. With the advent of online degree courses, the learning of higher education institutes all over the world are open to you. So finding the right fit is easier than ever. If you want to do Wilfrid Laurier’s online BACP it’s now available wherever you are without you having to uproot your life. Plus, studying online saves a lot of headaches, administration and hidden costs, such as expensive commutes, plane tickets, accomodation costs or visas, making it much more accessible in terms of cost too.

Accessing Support

If you think that choosing to study online means you won’t be able to access the support you need, you may be pleasantly surprised by the reality of online study. Most digital learning programmes are well aware that support is a key concern for their students and have taken great steps to address it. Support from university tutors is available alongside one to one feedback to keep your studies on track. You should be allocated a supervisor whom you can email and get in touch with via Skype for study guidance, as well as a host of student support services for study, technical or admin queries. Most institutions have introduced online learning platforms which connect you to your peers and tutors and have a wealth of study materials including videos of lectures, study notes and slideshows – all fully searchable. Some universities and colleges have set up a YouTube channel to allow you access lectures anywhere in the world, while others have produced podcasts and online labs. Your assessments will be taken or submitted online, while your scores and feedback will also be available – it’s usually quite a seamless process and one which is truly portable. You could be studying for that master’s degree on the train to work every day!

The Risks Of Blogging (And How To Avoid Them)

No matter what you use your blog for, be it for personal or business use, there are risks involved. As a blogger then, you need to take steps to avoid these risks by taking some precautionary steps to avoid them.

Here are two of the more common risks involved with blogging, with some handy tips to help you reduce them.

Risk #1: Your blog content

Be careful what you say online. Sure, your blog is a useful place to share your opinions, but remember that it’s online for all to see. If you say anything that is scandalous, controversial, and perhaps even slanderous, you may be targeted by people who don’t like what you have to say. And if what you say is particularly harmful, you might also suffer at the hands of a hacker, receive negative media attention, and find yourself blocked from continuing by your blog provider. Your personal safety might also be at risk, especially if you can be easily identified.

Tip: Think before you write something down. While you want to be honest and true, you don’t want to attract a lot of negative attention. Verify any facts before compiling blog posts, and if you suspect what you are trying to say is harmful to others, consider the consequences before any posts go live. You might ask a trusted friend or family member to have a read through your post too, as that second opinion might just save your bacon!

Risk #2: Your finances

This works two-fold. For starters, if your blog contains a lot of personal information, such as anything related to your personal identity, then some nefarious person may have just what they need to open up credit using your name. And if you use your blog for business purposes, perhaps within the realms of ecommerce, you might also be hit by hackers able to steal both your financial information and that of your customers.

Tip 1: For starters, don’t post your personal information online. While you might use your name, you might still want to avoid using your postal address, and any other identifying features, such as clues located within photographs. Know too that If you have registered your own domain name, your personal information may be accessed online through the WHOIS service, so opt for domain privacy when registering.

Tip 2: Ensure your website is secure using the steps listed here. This is the best way to defeat the hackers, as while you may not think you are a target, you may be if a) your blog content is controversial, and b) you are using your blog for business purposes.

Tip 3: If you are using your blog to sell anything online, then you need to remember KYC (Know Your Customer) compliances. This is the process of identifying who your potential customers are, as you don’t want to be the subject of online fraud. To protect yourself and any customers who may have had their information stolen by a nefarious miscreant, consider using Jumio. Jumio replaces slow KYC processes, using cutting-edge solutions to ensure you stay compliant when operating your business.

Finally

Blogging can be both fun and financially profitable to you, but the reverse is true if you don’t take care. Follow our tips, and you should have a safer experience when operating online. Let us know your thoughts, and if you have any other advice for our readers, be sure to share your wisdom with us. Thanks for reading, and happy (safe) blogging!

Here’s How You Make Money Without Having to Leave the House

If you want to make money without having to leave the house, then this is very easy to do. It doesn’t take long, and you would be surprised at how easy it is for you to really make a steady income on the side.

Sell Online

One thing that you can do is sell your valuables online. This is a great way for you to make some quick cash. Sure, you may be tempted to have a yard sale so that you don’t have to bother taking pictures, but you should avoid this if possible. The main reason for this is because when you sell products online, you will soon find that they fetch a much higher price. You can also target buyers across the world as well.

Investing

If you have never tried your hand at investing before then now is the perfect time to try. There are so many different types of investment out there for you to try and take advantage of, not to mention that some are more lucrative when compared to others. When you are able to find the right one for you, you will soon find that it’s a great way to make money and you don’t even have to leave the house either. If you want to get some help starting out with your investment then why not start by trying to learn about Ripple, or even try and look into stocks.

Used Books

Believe it or not, there are tons of sites out there that can help you to sell your used books. You would get way less if you sold them to a bookstore so it’s worth taking this into consideration. This is especially the case if you have some special editions or even some limited edition/signed copies. It doesn’t take long for you to put your books online and when you have created an online account with the site of your choosing, you will soon find that the whole process becomes much easier.

Direct Marketing

There are so many businesses out there who are looking for direct marketing. You could even work in affiliate sales if you want. When you do this, you sell products on behalf of other companies and you take a portion of the profit. The best thing about this is that you can do it all online and you can also feel confident knowing that the more you sell, the more you’ll make!

DIY

Are you really good at making things? If you are then you could make a good amount of money by creating an online storefront for your crafts. This won’t take long at all and you can do it all in your own time. You may soon find that there is a demand for what you do and the best thing about it is that nobody else can compete. You are completely unique in the way that you create things, and this can really help you to create your own lucrative business opportunity.

Netflix Off For A While

I had signed up for Netflix a month ago and got the first month for free as a trial period. At first I didn’t know what I would go and watch on it. I just clicked on the first episode of Star Trek Discovery, Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD so I could check and see how it plays. I am using the data on my cell phone to stream movies, live sports and stuff. I get 200GB of data on my plan from Vodafone and that’s a lot and therefore I put it to good use when I finally got this new tv a month ago.

But, I have a lot of movies and tv shows that I want to watch and still have yet to watch that is not on Netflix but elsewhere. So after a couple of weeks that went by, I still hadn’t watched anything on Netflix after signing up. A few days ago I thought that I should atleast try and watch the 10 episode first season of Lost In Space, a show that I really wanted to watch ever since it first came out. So I finally did that and enjoyed the show and the way Netflix is.

But I haven’t continued and signed up for the next month and won’t do so until maybe January or February. I love what they have up on Netflix but if I pay Rs.500 now and not watch more than 10 films atleast or a couple of seasons of a tv show or two, then it’s a waste. So I guess I will wait for a bit and see; once I finish this big pile of movies and tv shows that I have with me, then I will continue with Netflix.

WIFI On Optic Fibre Is Here

So we have these monster speeds now available in Kerala. I just saw this add spring up all over Youtube and a couple of other places. Would I really need 200Mbps speed for my internet at home? What am I planning to download – the history of the world? Unless you are on the USS Enterprise or one of the other starships, I doubt you could really need those astronomical speeds (maybe) and I bet the monthly charges are astronomical as well.

I will wait and watch as my 10mbps speed seems ok to me at the moment (I could use 25 but let’s see).

How Can Professional Illustrations Increase Sales?

Making as many sales as possible is the bottom line for all businesses. This is why entrepreneurs apply all marketing strategies that are appropriate to boost revenue. Did you know that illustrations are an excellent marketing strategy that promotes an increase in sales in many ways? Hiring an expert who creates illustration for big-brand products is advantageous to the company. To make this issue clear, let us look at how using professional illustrations increases sales for a company.

A Compelling Website

Illustrations are an amazing way to make your website look better and enhance user experience. Professional illustrators create authentic yet attractive media that will not slow down website visitors because it is too heavy. Entrepreneurs who employ the work of these experts realize an increase in sales within no time as more people visit the website. Illustration can be included with the products that a business is offering. Experts will make the illustrations attractive so that potential buyers will be convinced to buy.

Higher Conversion Rates

Now that the business has a website with an excellent user experience, the conversion rate determines the sales it will experience. Some businesses even use specific strategies that are aimed at converting potential customers to actual buyers of the offered goods or services. As the potential buyers admire the attractive and professionally branded product, they are compelled to buy them. Illustration can also be employed on free promotional gifts and samples. Clients will want to try these products even if it is their first time using them.

Increased Brand Awareness

Making people aware of your brand can be an uphill task. But did you know that illustrations are one way of increasing awareness? As a matter of fact, this is extremely effective when proper strategies are engaged. Illustrations are used to brand the website, social media pages, sold goods and packaging. As the illustrations on these items make their way to the web, homes, streets and magazines, people get to know of your brand. In return, this will increase sales for your company.

Communicating the Message

When people are researching a product, they expect to find as much information as possible before they will purchase it. The more information they get, they more convinced to buy they become. Illustrations are an attractive way to communicate information to the audience. Experts argue that products with attractive and informative illustrations easily convince potential customers to buy. Therefore, your work as a business person is to ensure that your illustrator is professional enough to provide this level of quality.

Creating a Desire

Have you ever looked at an illustration of a food product and felt hungry? Well, such a desire is often experienced across a variety of categories of goods and services that have attractive and compelling illustrations. Experienced illustrators work to create a desire to buy particular products. Most people actually do not need to read the accompanying text if there is any. The art is enough to trigger the urge to acquire that product.

From the above details, it is clear that professional illustrators can increase sales for a business. They require cooperation from owners and managers to reach their goal easily.