Monthly Archives: July 2015

The Easy Life of High Rise Living


Who doesn’t want someone to open the door for you as you enter or leave your home? You don’t have to be a member of the Top 100 wealthiest to live like one when you live the easy life of high rise living. Literally doors open for you when you live in an environment designed specifically for your ease of living. Collectively speaking, when the design of your living space is based on the greatest amount of comfort and aesthetic appeal possible, the outcome is generally one of high appeal.

Beauty and Stress Free in High Rise Living

Aside from magnificent fresh floral arrangements which seem to magically appear in hallways and foyers throughout the building on what seems to be on a daily basis, there always seems to be a genuine feeling of camaraderie between the people who live quietly around you. Graciousness usually abound in a high rise because people generally don’t have much stress in their lives when they’re enjoying the easy life of high rise living. They’re not worried about  the endless to-do list which accompanies living in a house. Not to mention, the angst which derives from living on a block where each home competes for the best and greenest lawn.

Sense of Equality in High Rise Living

When you live the easy life of high rise living there is no competition amongst the neighbors who live in the same building. Their house isn’t bigger or smaller, their yard isn’t more or less manicured, the cars parked in the driveway are not cleaner or shinier then yours. When you live in a shared environment at least in the common areas, there is a sense of equality that creates commonality amongst all who live together under one big shared roof. When you see a neighbor in a hallway or share an elevator ride, which in fact doesn’t happen very often, it’s almost a surprise and you welcome the small and sincere interaction. The doors may be all the same, but the people behind them are as varied as the flowers in a botanical garden.

High rise living often begets built in accommodations such as a library room, business office or conference room. Beautiful lobbies often accompany today’s high rises which almost have exquisite sitting areas where one can relax in what could be described as a grand parlor. It’s not quite all yours, but a small section of that sofa is.


High Life in a High Rise


There are many advantages to living the high life in a high rise and some are not always obvious. For example, the views at sunrise or sunset, or just the views in general. Living in a house rarely affords you the pleasure of watching one of nature’s most amazing daily spectacles and it happens twice a day! Aside from the occasional gray, rainy or fog strewn days, high rises are just that; high rises. You don’t have to be on vacation at a seashore to witness one of the truly unique expressions of love that exists in the world. And, the best part is no two sunrises or sunsets are ever alike. Your windows become a canvas of light, color, and shapes, which never cease to change. When living in a high rise, you’ll know the weather forecast before the weatherman does. And, when it does change, when the thunderheads appear on the horizon and start to light up as they soar to the heavens, there might not be anything more mesmerizing to watch in nature. But, one thing for sure, here comes the rain. Continue reading

Advantages of High Rise Living

0611_VendomeThere are many advantages to High Rise Living, but is it right for you? For instance, when you travel do you like to worry about your home or your belongings being tucked away into a thief’s black bag? Or, when you hear the back door creek open in the middle of the night, do you like to worry about who or what the heck it is? If those types of worrisome things are something you enjoy by no means is high-rise living for you.

Now, if you’re the type of person who wants more time and a carefree lifestyle, then you may enjoy high-rise living and the advantages it provides. Not having to worry about your stuff is just one of them.

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3 Garden Art ideas

Today’s gardener wants to find great ways to add garden art to complete their work.  I know.  The garden looks great.  The Periwinkles are cute.  The clump of Boston Fern adds a soft touch to the corner.  The Japanese maple in the corner adds a swatch of burgundy.  But, we need that one last piece to put your stamp on it.  A yard flag with your name is proving to be the perfect touch. Here are 3 garden art ideas from happy gardeners.

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Blogging on LinkedIn – LinkedIn Tips for Lawyers

Woman BloggingAs reported by the American Bar Association’s 2014 Legal Technology Survey Report, LinkedIn is a lawyer’s preferred social media platform.  In early 2014, LinkedIn gave users the ability to share long-form posts – it is essentially blogging on LinkedIn.  This is a great feature that is only building in popularity.  If you have been thinking about blogging, a good way to test the waters is by using the long-form posts on LinkedIn. Continue reading

Fans & Rock Performers


Fandom, a term used to describe “fans” who escape from their ordinary day to day living by identifying with a rock performer.  Fandom has always been part of the rock ’n’ roll myth, appeal, and popularity.  Fans in the contemporary musical world manage their emotions, sense of self and social relationships with others. It is to the star performer credit as to how long “fandom” exist for them before disappearing into obscurity. Last week, I mentioned the fans at my latest concert, The Rising  who introduced me into the world of fandom, the meaning of fandom and  how “fandom” evolved with one’s life.

How does a Fan follow Bruce Springsteen?Screen Shot 2015-07-17 at 9.50.42 PM

This is my experience as a Bruce Springsteen fan and my journey through his music. For my first concert experience, the ticket was handed to me, no long lines or overnight camping. It was simply a gesture from one friend to another. As the electronic world matured and tickets were bought from the internet, one had to become savvy to purchase the “best seats” before the concerts were “sold out”.  As tour dates were announced, I was determine to the “first in line”. Not to be outdone by the internet, I organized a team of six young experience internet entrepreneurs to my office each equipped with a computer, login and credit cards. As the clock struck 10:00, each team member (my children and their friends) were authorized to purchase tickets with the best possible seats. Less than five minutes and hundreds of dollars later, I had six tickets to give away to my sisters and their husbands. For the first time, I was introducing Bruce Springsteen, his songs, his stories and his music. This night meant more to me than any other concert…I was passing my fandom to my closest members of my family. How would they react? Continue reading

Amazon Prime Day breakdown

Amazon Prime DayAmazon Prime Day was held on July 15, 2015 and had been a highly talked about event for the past few weeks! One thing people wondered about was the types of new deals that would appear on the website. Many people were also concerned with the fact that Amazon Prime Day would not be a big hit since people had to purchase a Prime account in order to even take part in the deals. That said the news has broken on weather Amazon Prime Day was a success or not! Continue reading

Carrier Dominate Mobile Marketing

Carrier Dominate Mobile Marketing

Text Message Mobile Ad delivery is just a drop, compared to the mobile carrier’s full potential.

Could carriers dominate mobile marketing in Latin America?  Mobile carriers are in a unique position because they own the subscriber base, which can be as large as 90 Million in some of the largest countries in Latin America.  Not only do the carriers own the subscribers, but they can control any data in or out of their mobile infrastructure.  Most carriers already keep control of core network services such as text messages and other less known but equally powerful delivery channels such as MMS, USSD, SIM Browsing, and IVR.  For years, text messaging (SMS) brokers have purchased bulk SMS from carriers and resold the service to 3rd party companies for the purpose of mobile marketing.  In  this arrangement, all parties benefited, which is not the case with mobile Ads delivered via data channels such as mobile web or in-apps Ads.

Carrier mobile marketing revenue potential

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Road Trip Relief – Vintage Stores from Dallas to Austin

car-171416_1280 (2)For those of you who have made the excruciating drive from Dallas to Austin, you know that the southbound “three hour” trip can feel – and sometimes take – much longer.  So, before you gas up, give yourself a pep talk, and prepare to navigate the concrete barriers and seemingly endless tail lights, give yourself something to look forward to.

Consider this your road trip relief –  stops at vintage stores from Dallas to Austin.

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HDR Photography

HDR Photography

Image by Spencer Martinez

HDR or High Dynamic Range photography is the ratio of light to dark in photography.
Why would it be necessary to use HDR? To create an image in which there is too much light or shadows in a scene. A camera lens does not have the dynamic range to view a scene like our eyes. A human eye has an extraordinary range and sees what is going on in the shadows.
HDR photography is done by capturing several different exposures, from extremely over-exposed to under-exposed and a few exposures in between. The images are then combined using image editing software. Equipment you will need for HDR photography, digital camera, tripod and image editing software. Continue reading

The Secret to Work

Let yourself breathe and imagine the possibilities

Let yourself breathe and imagine the possibilities

Imagine if the idea of work was something you never had to consider. There was no such thing as TGIF. No worry about completing meaningless tasks with no value or purpose. You simply did what you love to do. You felt energized and motivated when Monday morning came around and you looked forward to attacking every day.

To many, if not most of us, the concept of never working a day in our life may seem like a fantasy. A dream scenario never realized except by the 1 in a million that wins the lottery. The retail clerk, factory worker or office pro who punches a clock, does the required work and at 5 o’clock calls it a day. The person who does what’s expected, meets their obligations and at the end of a long career looks back and says I did what I did for the time that I had.

But what if we changed this sobering scene by adding one word to your mindset. A word so profound you only need to embrace it to change your life forever. Would you do it? Of course you would – at least in theory. Want to know what the word is? It’s passion. I know you scoffed and thought passion, really, how can one word make a difference in who I am and what I do? And frankly, why should I care?

The word passion means “a strong and barely controllable emotion; a compelling enthusiasm or desire for something.”   So ask yourself, when you think about passion what comes to mind? Is it a person? Is it an object? Or is it a feeling that ignites your senses, a spiritual presence or is it something else? Perhaps it’s something you love to do? An activity that makes you feel good or great. It’s something you do just because and you could care less if it brought you any rewards. You do it because of the way it makes you feel, the gratification and inner joy it provides.

Do you think Steve Jobs was passionate about what he did?

Do you think Steve Jobs was passionate about what he did?

Now take that passion that pervades your soul and gives you a sense of being  and let it be your life’s work. That’s right, let it become your definition of “9 to 5” and what you do. But I have to warn you, when you marry your passion with what you do, the concept of work melts away. Words like obsessed, intense, and driven quickly replace words like mundane, boring and unfulfilling. You’ll find an inner spirit that comes alive and takes hold of your persona like a powerful drug.

So how, you might ask, do you define your passion? It’s easy, you ask yourself one question, “If money were no object, what would I do?” Allow yourself to breathe, to sit back and imagine the places where others share your passion. Remember passion breeds passion. Or as Anthony Robbins said, “There is no greatness without a passion to be great, whether it’s the aspiration of an athlete, a scientist, a parent or a businessperson.”

Organize your Social Media

As a social media manager you may find it difficult to say organized. You walk into work everyday with a plan. As soon you sit down all the fire alarms set off. You have to post a new press release, you have to socialize an event, you have an angry client on twitter that you have to address, and you have a spontaneous meeting that derailed your day. That’s the typical day of a social media manager. How can one effectively get through the day organized in such a way that the fire alarms don’t totally throw your day off?

Organizing your social media can be difficult, but don’t let that stop you from getting it done. Continue reading

What is Social Employee Advocacy

Social employee advocacy is important. How many of us feel comfortable being a social advocate for your brand? Not many. Factors like, invasion of social privacy and happiness with your company play a huge role in whether or not an employee participates socially . How could we change this occurrence?  Continue reading

How To: Create a Digital Communications Plan

shutterstock_106636133You are tasked with the job of managing your organizations social media, but with no digital communications plan it is like swinging a bat blind folded. You know you need a plan of action but don’t know how to get there. No fear! Follow these five steps for a fool-proof digital communications plan.

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2015 Social Media Updates

social-media-worldThere is no denying that social media has turned our world upside down. It has completely transformed the way we communicate. As marketers and communicators, it is vital to stay up-to-date in the ever changing landscape of social media. Here are some 2015 social media updates you won’t want to miss out on.


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The Finest Thread of a Bespoke Shirt

fall2015With a JHilburn custom shirt you may be assured every thread is considered and inspected. The Albini Group produces fabrics with state of the art machinery for spinning and weaving fabric. Raw yarn is carefully selected, analyzed, and controlled for moisture. Only the best threads will become Albini yarns and will undergo testing for twist, strength, and stitch to insure the optimal quality for weaving. The continuity of all the colors are monitored by machines to insure colors selected for design are steadfast for the pattern for the weave. Ultimately, the threads are going through a quality control process and the threads will move on to be dyed. These dyed threads are now ready for the weaving step. In the weaving stage, fabrics are carefully inspected before being sent for finishing. The finishing step transforms the fabric to it’s final color and appearance. Continue reading

Must Have Albums When Building a Classic Record Collection

The scratchy sound of an old record, even connected to today’s hi-fi stereos, has a soothing and nostalgic quality to it.  There’s an intangible sense of satisfaction that comes from the record playing ritual:  pulling the vinyl from its paper sleeve, slowly flipping the record as you lightly blow the dust off both sides, placing it gently onto the turntable, then watching the need drop… ready for the magic to begin.

Whether you’re a new age audiophile or an LP junkie, vinyl is making a comeback – and here are a few suggestions of must-have albums when building a classic record collection.
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Customized yard flags are the perfect gift for a new house

Why aren’t there more customized yard flags in America? I’m always amazed when I drive through neighborhoods at the number of cheesy yard flags I see.  Does anyone really see those at the home improvement store and say, “Oh Yes, that’s exactly what I’ve been looking for!” A giant butterfly yard flag? I don’t think so.  These big box retailers don’t get it.  My 12 year old daughter might think it’s cute, but I do not.

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Mobile analytics, meet business objectives

mobile analyticsNomadax creators recently added mobile analytics to its android application.  After only a few weeks, the mobile analytics shed fresh light on user behavior, application design issues and potential target market.  With defined business objectives you can use mobile analytics to help achieve your business goals.  Below, we detail how mobile analytics could help achieve your business objectives.

Mobile analytics:  Sessions and Session Frequency

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Breaking Down the Cuban Broussard Twitter War

In last week’s blog post, it was reported that the Dallas Mavericks and center DeAndre Jordan had come to terms on a four-year contract.  Between that verbal agreement on July 3rd and the first day players are actually allowed to sign these new deals, July 9th, Jordan had a change of heart and decided to return to the Los Angeles Clippers.  Social media, of course, went bananas.  Players took to Twitter and Instagram about last-minute negotiations, an emoji bonanza kept things entertaining, and ESPN’s Chris Broussard sent out a tweet about Dallas Mavericks owner, Mark Cuban, that started the Cuban Broussard Twitter War. Continue reading

Develop Business Using LinkedIn – LinkedIn Tips for Lawyers

Now you know have some tips regarding LinkedIn endorsements and groups, but how do you develop business using LinkedIn? First and foremost, make connections with colleagues, peers, clients, potential clients, and those you admire. When making the connection, don’t make the mistake of using the canned LinkedIn connection request, because it’s about making a connection with someone. Instead, write a quick personalized message. If you don’t know them, explain why you are reaching out to them. In addition to connecting with them on LinkedIn, set up a Newsle alert and as Newsle says, “never miss an article about someone who matters to you.”

This leads to the second tip, Be Human! Congratulate people on new jobs, wish them happy birthday, and applaud them on work anniversaries. Also, send a message to your connection when a Newsle alert pops up. It will only be flattering when you acknowledge them.
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The Rising

The Rising by Bruce Springsteen

The Rising, an album by Bruce Springsteen, debut in 2002 which helped healed the nation from a horrific terrorist attack on American soil. Everyone remember the moment; where you were and what you were doing when the attack happen. People were fearful and angry and needed to find that inner solace that comes from music and sharing grief. An article in the Rolling Stone mentioned a person stopped Bruce Springsteen and said “We need you now.” 

My exact moment was teaching high school students photography at Scarborough High School, in Maine. I had moved there with my son and my daughter and together we were building a new life and friends. Months later, the stories came out that the terrorist had come to my town, walked through my Walmart and stop at my airport. This was my home, my hometown.

The Rising!

The album, The Rising was released on July 30, 2002. Time magazine said it was the “first significant piece of pop art to respond to the events of [September 11],”  Bruce Springsteen interviewed with David Letterman late night show. His band opened on MTV’s Video Music Awards playing “The Rising”, he was on the cover of Time, Ted Koppel visited his farm for a feature article on his show, Nighttime.  The album, The Rising stayed Number One for the next three weeks. By the summer of 2003, he was back in stadiums including ten sold out nights in New Jersey. Bruce Springsteen was back.

My family attended one of those ten sold out nights but this time the concerts were different. Security had tighten. As our family passed through the gates, my daughter was thrown into one line, my son was in “males only” line and because I was holding a purse, I was shove to a different line.  My children had become separated from me in a time of turmoil and fear. But I forgot, these were Bruce Springsteen fans.  Instead of panic, everyone united and started looking for my lost children. My son was quickly found but my daughter was nowhere to be found. Suddenly I heard “Mom” and I looked up. She was on the shoulders of a strange man looking over the tops of all the people reaching for me. Now I started to understand Bruce Springsteen fandom. That fan taught me friendship at a Springsteen concert.

My favorite song is: Let’s Be Friends

“Let’s Be Friends (Skin To Skin)”

I been watchin’ you a long time

Trying to figure out where and when

We been moving down that same line

Time is now maybe we could get skin to skin

Don’t know when this chance might come again

Good times got a way of comin’ to an end

Don’t know when this chance might come again

Good times got a way of slippin’ a-way

Let’s be friends, baby let’s be friends

I know we’re different you and me

Got a different way of walkin’

The time has come to let the past be history

Yeah if we could just start talkin’

Don’t know when this chance might come again

Good things got a way of comin’ to an end

Don’t know when this chance might come again

Good things got a way of slippin’

Let’s be friends, baby let’s be friends

Do, do do doo do do do doo

Do, do do doo do do do do doo

Do, do do doo do do do doo

Let’s be friends

Do, do do doo do do do doo

Do, do do doo do do do doo

Let’s be friends

There’s a lot of talk going ’round you

Let them talk you know you’re the only one

There’s a lot of walls need tearing down

Together we could take them down one by one

Don’t know when this chance might come again

Good times got a way of comin’ to an end

Don’t know when this chance might come again

Good times got a way of slippin’

Let’s be friends, baby let’s be friends

Essential Elements of Art in Photography

Essential elements of art in photography

Image by Spencer Martinez

Essential elements of art in photography can make the difference between a snap shot and a work of art. This can be accomplished when adding two or more of the elements of art. The elements of art are leading lines, color, shape, form, texture and space. In this post we will be focusing on leading lines, color, texture and space. Continue reading

The Buying Game: Online Auction Tips for Vintage Newbies

You’ve searched the entire world-wide-web over and found that must-have vintage treasure. With the growth of online auction sites and the nature of vintage buying and selling, there’s a good chance the item you found is up for grabs to the highest bidder.

children-computerThe nice thing about online auctions is that the bidding typically takes place over a period of days, which means you have plenty of time to gather information about the auction site and item before you begin bidding.

Here are some online auction tips for beginners.


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The Bespoke Boy Personalizes a JHilburn Suit

RevengeSuitWith a nice fitting shirt, you’ll want to take care of a bespoke suit with your personal touches. With JHilburn you’ll find an array of choices you’ve never had before. A large selection of fabrics from the finest mills in Italy, working buttons, an array of button choices, pockets, linings, a half-lined jacket, and one, two, or three button notches.

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Benefits of a Professional Association

Why is it that students seemingly join all manner of clubs, groups, causes and more while on campus only to go “cold turkey” and drop all affiliations when it’s time to get a “real job” as my mother used to say? Or better yet, how many people do you know that give 110% to a new job at the expense of outside interests and after a year or two feel burned out and disconnected from the world they know and love?

I ask this question as more than an observation on life, it’s about being the engaged, well-rounded and interesting person most of us can be with a little work. Okay, you’re asking, where do associations fit in this life mix, especially with a full-time job, outside relationships or a family, kids activities, civic and religious affiliations, and a whole lot more?

Associations, of which there are more than 1.5 million non-profits, and easily over a 100,000 professional groups are a connection to “what’s happening” in your business or professional world. Yes, you can read the latest news in your field from innumerable sources, but where do you get the “why” behind the latest changes at a Fortune 500 entity or hear about a start-up being formed in your backyard?

But more than news, associations connect people of all ages, levels of experience, self-interests, motivations and personal goals. In many ways, they are a “melting pot” for your interests, no matter how narrow or broad they may be. And, whether you are looking to connect locally, regionally, nationally or even on a global scale the options are there for you.

The real secret to associations comes from the learning side that people often take for granted. Yes, there are meetings with guest speakers along with seminars, regional and national meetings, and enough research materials to fill a small library. No, I’m talking about the professional development side where you get to try almost any job you want with no risk and a core leadership group who want to see you succeed regardless of your background.

Years ago, an association needed a finance person to manage the books which can be a time-consuming and thankless job, especially in a sizeable organization. They had to have a numbers person, but how to get a volunteer to take on a second job? The answer – change the title of the association job. The accounting person suddenly became the “CFO” which instantly raised his expectations putting him in a leadership role where he was encourged to be progressive and forward-thinking.

At the same time, he was able to practice being a CFO and learn on the job about expectations from the organization, the board of directors and the members-at-large. In effect, a learn-by-doing opportunity that could quickly be added to his resume and provide a first-hand experience to discuss as his career advanced.

In most cases, nearly 95% to be exact, people join associations, but never become involved. They’re called “paper members” because they pay their dues and do nothing more than add a listing to their resume. As for the 5% who make a commitment and get involved it can be a life changing experience, I know. As a finalist for a new position, the final decision maker was a board member for a prominent association where I had been a chapter president; three days later I was offered the job.

The Importance of Social Listening

We all enjoy talking, but do we ever really listen? We are all negligent to this behavior. In the world of digital communication it’s easy to just spout out information and forget to listen. Digital communication is the new wave of the world, but are you actually listening to what your prospects and clients have to say? Continue reading

Realizing Career Success with a Mentor

In today’s instant gratification, full speed ahead world why is it that mentoring seems like a forgotten or at least an overlooked art? That’s right, an art because you’re typically connecting with a master who has worked hard to get where they are and not only garnered your attention, but your respect as well.

For students and early career professionals, a mentor can help you see the proverbial “forest through the trees.” The possibilities in an industry or market you may be in today or the field you aspire to tomorrow. An experienced sage who may or may not see the glass as half-full, but who will always provide an opinion, an alternative perspective to what you see and how you think. And maybe surprisingly, for no cost other than acknowledging the thoughts rendered and sharing the reasons why you did or did not choose to accept the ideas presented.

Working with a mentor doesn’t need to be seen as a chore or an obligation to complete an assignment, but rather an open conversation where thoughts, ideas and feelings are shared on both sides. That’s right, the mentor will be learning from you almost as much as you will be learning from and about your mentor. Remember, each of us is unique with a different perspective on life, business, relationships and more that helps define who we are, how we think and certainly what we love to do.

When you think of a mentor stop and consider the power of a divining rod to seemingly find water where technology and experts alike are often unsuccessful. A powerful combination of faith, conviction and unquestioned expertise that despite the naysayers finds a way to succeed when everyone says stop, you’re wasting your time.

Studies have shown that each of us will change jobs 6, 7 or even 8 times over the course of our careers. Some will chase the money and not worry about the job itself, while others will forego the cash to make a contribution to life and their fellow man. And still others will pursue a career path that delivers on all fronts, personal and professional, and we’ll call them successful. The best, most experienced climbers in the world never begin an ascent without a guide, a sherpa at their side, so why embark on an unchartered course for success when having a trusted mentor can make all the difference.

Twitter for Attorneys – Getting Started

Twitter Logo

Twitter as a social media platform, much like a Twitter newsfeed, has no intention on slowing down. At only 140 characters per tweet, it is fast, bite-sized bits of information.  This makes it extremely easy to consume  for busy professionals. Twitter, for attorneys is a must use tool.


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Social Media and The Palestinian Israeli Conflict

The Palestinian Israeli conflict is the world’s longest dispute and it is now influenced by social media. It involves a sixty year long struggle over dominance of the Holy Land and shows no signs of abating. One thing that is shifting however, is the international community’s attitude towards Israel. This is largely driven by the reporting of international news organizations, especially European, on the events inside Palestine and Israel. However, the proliferation of social media in the region has given rise to a phenomenon labeled “citizen journalists” whereby activists on the ground and average Palestinians post on social media photographs and narratives of their daily lives under Israeli occupation and brutal military tactics. Social media has allowed for activists to put forth a narrative that is largely sympathetic to the plight of the Palestinians. Media organizations have picked up on this trend and it is reflected in coverage that is not as heavily pro-Israel as was the case in the past.

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