Using Social Media to Help End Poverty One Picture At a Time

You can now Instagram your food for charity using this new app, FoodShareFilter.  The Instagram filter donates money to an El Salvadoran charity every time you post a picture. The way it works is that you take a photo of your food through the app and apply the hashtag “#FoodShareFilter.” The app then adds the message “This picture helps millions of people not to suffer hunger” and shares it on Instagram. It is that easy. The cost of the app is $0.99 from the App Store or $1.16 on Google Play. A donation is made to an agricultural program in El Salvador run by Manos Unidas each time you post a picture of your food.

I think this is such a great way to raise awareness about poverty. It is also very easy; all you need to do is upload pictures that you would normally take through the app and it donates money to the charity.


What Businesses Should Do On Social Media

Social media is a great device for businesses if it is used properly and to its fullest potential. Social media is great for business because it is a an effective way to reach thousands of people very quickly and fairly easily. Social media is also free advertising for your business, so why not use it.

Yaitza Canterbury, who writes a blog called SocialADAMANTIUM, thinks that bussinesses should focus on these ten things on social media:   

1. You have to be active. – Make a concerted effort to PARTICIPATE in social media.

2.  Build relationships to build loyalty.  – Social media is about building relationships, not selling. Provide excellent customer service.

3.  Be honest and transparent in your communication.

4.   Don’t pretend to be something your not. – Be true to your brand.

5.  Humanize your brand. – The Internet is faceless.  In an anonymous medium, it is vital that brands connect and engage their customers.

6.  Listen! – This is crucial.  Social media is a platform for two-way communication. Think of it in the same way you would a face-to-face conversation. 

7.  Seek feedback. – Want to know if you’re doing things right, ask. It shows that you care about your customers.  And don’t be afraid of negative feedback; embrace it. It provides the opportunity to rise to the occasion.

8.  Be relevant and timely in your participation. – Address all feedback promptly.

9.  If pertinent, provide incentives. – Discounts, coupons, and special offers might be a great way to grow your online presence.  

10. Provide a variety of content. –   Use photos, videos, podcasts, webinars, whitepapers, infographics … the sky’s the limit. Just make sure that the content you post is relevant, timely, and has a clear call to action.

I think that all these tips are great. I think the most important tip is the first one because it is very important to keep customers interested. To do this you should make sure that you have a schedule of when you are going to post information so that your customers can know when to expect content. I also think it is very important to listen to what customers are saying on social media and respond back to them so that they feel that they matter to your company. 

Social Media Response to Boston Bombings

Yesterday social media played a big role in the Boston Bombings. It helped people find out more information about the bombings, connect with loved ones and friends, and find out ways they could help. People also rallied in support of the heartbroken community.

 According to Joanna Stern of ABC News, social media played three roles: it broke the news, elicited strong personal reaction and created support forms for communities.

 1. News Break

People found out very quickly about the explosions at the Boston Marathon as news spread across social media. The Boston Globe was one of the first news sources to tweet about the story at 2:59 pm on Monday. 

According to Topsy, a Twitter analytics company, at around 4:10 p.m. there were more than 300,000 mentions on Twitter of “Boston explosions.” At around 4:30 p.m., there were more than 700,000 mentions on Twitter of the “Boston Marathon.”

 2. Eliciting Strong Personal Reaction

 According to Joanna Stern, “… it wasn’t just graphic images and video of the event that spread, people shared their emotional reactions. Many also took to Facebook to search for friends they thought might have been at the event and posted that they were relived to hear everyone was OK.”

 3. Support Forms for Communities

Many people came together on social media to comfort those that were affected by this tragedy. The hashtag #prayforboston trended on Twitter. People also shared photos of Boston on Instagram with the hashtag #prayforboston. Others also found out how they could donate blood. There were also messages being spread about wearing purple on Wednesday to support the community. 

 I find it very inspiring and uplifting the steps that people took to help others. It shows the generosity and kindness of the human spirit.


Picture Circulating on Facebook


This was also found on Facebook. On top of the picture it said, “In light of today’s tragedy… In case you needed a reminder, there is always good to be found from humanity, even on the darkest days”.

I really like this quote by Mr. Rogers. It is so true, in any tragedy you have to look at all the people who stepped into help. It makes the situation a little better and brings some hope.

Social Media Response to help find missing TCNJ student Paige Aiello

According to CBS News, Paige Aiello was last seen at 1 p.m. on April 9 by her father at their Hillsborough home. Aiello was reported missing after a passer-by called her parents to say she found Aiello’s belongings on the south walkway of the George Washington Bridge Tuesday evening. NYPD Harbor units scanned the waters of the Hudson River, but did not find anything.

 The news spread quickly on social media and her picture and information about her disappearance was shared. Social media sites spread messages of hope and caring. A “Find Paige Aiello” Facebook page was created and as of today has over 6,000 followers. A photo collage of Aiello on Facebook’s “Missing” page for New York and New Jersey was shared by people nationwide. A Twitter account with the user name “FindPaigeAiello” has also been created, and was filled with wishes for her safe return.

This really shows the good that social media can do. It spreads information quickly and can reach a lot of people at once. Social media also helps people create a supportive community and gives a sense of hope. My thoughts and prayers go out to her family and friends and I hope that they find her soon. 


Missing Student Paige Aiello

Anyone with information on Aiello’s disappearance is asked to call the Hillsborough Township Police Department at (908) 369-4323, the Somerset County Prosecutor’s Office at (908) 575-3300, Somerset County Crime Stoppers’ Tip Line at (888) 577-TIPS(8477) or online at or and click on either “Crime Stoppers” or “TIPS HOTLINE”. All calls are confidential.

 For the full story of Paige’s disappearance go to:



5 Things Students Should Never Do on Social Media

1.    Post Illegal Activity
Once you post a picture or video it is out there and you become vulnerable for criminal prosecution. The consequences can affect you for the rest of your life. Once in a while check your social media sites to make sure that there is nothing on there that you wouldn’t want your mom or a future employer to see.
2.    Lie
 Picture this: You tell your boss that you are sick and cannot come in put then you go on a vacation or to a concert instead. Word could possibly get back to your boss and disciplinary actions may be taken or you might even be fired.  
3.    Post Confidential Information
Information is shared so quickly and easily, you never know where that information will end up.  
4.    Post Location
Posting your location makes it easier for predators to find you. For example, if you post that you are going to be on vacation for a week, you are welcoming burglars to your home. Post pictures from vacations when you come back.
5.    Never Rely on Privacy Settings
Nothing is never 100% private on the internet.

NYPD Sets Rules for Officers’ Use of Social Media

The New York Police Department is issuing guidelines on how officers should conduct themselves on social media sites. The guidelines come shortly after the fire commissioners son wrote a racist tweet on twitter.  
According to The New York Times, officers are no longer allowed to post photos of themselves in uniform on social media sites, except at police ceremonies. Officers are also not allowed to post images of crime scenes, witness statements or other nonpublic information gained through work as a police officer. If officers do not comply with these new guidelines, there will be disciplinary actions taken against them with the most severe being dismissal.The Fire Department is also working on drafting their own guidelines.
I think that it is good that the New York Police Department has set guidelines so officers now know right out front what is appropriate and what is not. I think it is also good for officers to separate their personal lives with their professional lives. It is a good idea for other companies to follow their lead so that everyone knows what is appropriate. As much as we would like to think that our social media lives and professional lives are separate, they are not. What one does in the social media world can have dire consequences in our professional lives. 

To read the whole story go to

Social Media Sites and Marriage Equality


Human Rights Campaign Logo


Image posted on Facebook for Marriage Equality


Image posted of Facebook for Marriage Equality

Social media sites are playing a big role in the debate over marriage equality. Proposition 8, which outlaws same-sex marriages in California, has moved in front of the Supreme Court for review. As people were protesting outside the Supreme Court in Washington on Tuesday, so were people on Facebook. Facebook profile pictures changed to a red version of the Human Rights Campaign’s logo in support of same sex marriage.

Human Rights Campaign on Facebook posted, “Make sure you wear red to show your support for marriage equality. And make your Facebook profile red too!” According to the Huffington Post, by Tuesday afternoon, its post had been shared over 45,000 times and had received over 13,000 “likes.”

Popular gay celebrities Ellen Degeneres and Lance Bass both changed their profile pictures to show support. Ellen’s new picture had over 60,000 likes, and Lance’s whole Facebook page was dedicated to fighting for marriage equality. Senator Claire McCaskill and Senator Mark Warner also used Tumblr and Facebook to say that they are in favor of same-sex marriage.

What do you think about using social media to show your opinions about same sex marriage? 

For more on this story go to

Instagram and Pictures of Celebrities

Regular people are now becoming the new paparazzi, according to Jenna Worthman’s blog post, “Instagram and the New Era of Paparazzi”, on The New York Times website. Earlier this week, pictures of Beyoncé and her daughter, Blue Ivy, quickly spread across the Internet, but the photos did not come from a traditional source. They came from Raquel Sabz’s Instagram.  After she put the photo on Instagram, Splash News purchased the photo for an undisclosed amount and distributed it to a number of sites, including, and The Huffington Post.

 According to Molly Goodson, a senior editor and the vice president for content at PopSugar, “the average person has eyes in places where regular paparazzi don’t have them. The whole world becomes a photo agency at that point. More so than ever before.”

 To read the whole story and view the picture go to:

 This story really shows how social media sites are really changing how and from whom we get news. Social media is putting the power into the hands of regular people, not just big media companies anymore. This story also shows how smartphones have changed things as well, with their good cameras and ability to go online to post a photo in matter of seconds. Millions of people can be reached in seconds by posting on social media sites. I find it amazing how a picture of Beyoncé holding her daughter and other pictures that we share on social media sites have value to big media companies like and The Huffington Post. I wonder how much she got for that photo that probably only took a few minutes to take.