Netflix has Taken Over my Life

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Okay, I know this isn’t exactly social media related, but hear me out.

Netflix has taken over my life.

If you’re not aware of the phenomenon that is Netflix, it’s a website that you subscribe to and pay around $8 a month and can stream any media that they provide, any time you want. Full details here

It all started when my brother texted me one day last school year asking me to split a subscription with him. I, being a responsible college student, said, “No, I have better things to spend my money on and do while I’m in college. Find someone else.” But, summer rolled around and, when I wasn’t working 40 hour work weeks, I was bored. I somehow convinced him to give me his Netflix password for free, and my life has drastically changed.

I see tweets all the time about shows people are watching on Netflix, how addicted people are, and suggestions of what to binge-watch next. If I didn’t see a Netflix tweet at least once a day, maybe I would have figured out something more productive to do with my remaining 128 hours in the week that summer that I was bored enough to watch the entire series of Gossip Girl. But, I hopped on the bandwagon and now all my free time is devoted to Grey’s Anatomy. If I’ve had a long day, I lay in my bed and watch a few episodes to unwind. If I need a study break, Netflix. There have been a couple of Friday nights that I have convinced myself to stay in and catch up on homework, but end up watching 10 episodes instead, because it’s Friday and I have all weekend to catch up on homework. 

People say that phones, the internet, and social media are hindering us from actually living. Those people must not have Netflix accounts, because Netflix trumps all of the other things. I find myself setting my phone down and not picking it up for hours because I’m in an intense part of a show and can’t peel my eyes away. Me, of all people! Netflix is a life-sucker. One minute you’re innocently opening a new tab on your laptop, and suddenly it’s hours later and you’re hooked on a new show. 

I’m in deep, but I have full confidence that I’m just using Netflix as a coping mechanism. This semester has flown by, and finals are right around the corner. It’s depressing, and I use Netflix to forget. It’s not the smartest idea, but I’m hoping that once I finish the semester and have less responsibilities this summer, I won’t need Netflix for the wrong reasons. 

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College Field Trips are the Best

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I am currently enrolled in a Social Media class at school, and the day my professor announced that we would be meeting at the Nebraska Humane Society thrilled me for reasons I couldn’t explain beyond the fact that I love animals. When I actually attended the field trip, however, I learned more than I thought possible from Elizabeth Hilpipre, a Creighton alum who runs the social media aspect of this private, nonprofit corporation. 

Elizabeth talked primarily about her Facebook and Twitter usage to get animals adopted. I had no idea that social media had so much of an impact on these animals. Of course, I knew someone had to be posting on the Twitter and Facebook pages to try to get the organization more publicity, but many of these animals were finding homes because of the posts! I was overwhelmed.

Elizabeth used a dog named Boomer as an example. Boomer had been in the shelter for a few months and hadn’t been adopted, so she posted his picture with a sign around his neck asking to share this picture and please find him a home. She posted the picture on Facebook at a strategic part of the day (around the time of people’s lunch break when they would most likely be online), and the picture went viral with over 80,000 shares. Boomer was adopted 2 days later. This is a prime example of how learning the ways of the social media world could be used for a fantastic benefit.

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Using analytics to measure how people are reacting to your content is an important way to stay relevant. Elizabeth checks the statistics of the sites often in order to know when to post, what posts people like/dislike, and who her prime audience is. Finding patterns in these statistics seems to be the key to successful social media. As a result, the Facebook page has over 50,000 likes and the Twitter page has over 7,000 followers. Of course, in this day and age, social media is a never ending concept and everyone could strive to have more success, but the Nebraska Humane Society has figured out how to get there. This is something we could all learn from them!