Mia Taylor

Celebrity & Brand Social Media Manager

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Giving Up My iPhone For a Droid.

11/07/2010

I decided that I was going to retire my iPhone and pick up a droid phone. There are quite a few reasons I did so.

  1. My iPhone response time was, well, quite unresponsive.
  2. My monthly bills, no matter how often a representative and I “reevaluated my current usage” were $100 or more (which did not include unlimited anything).
  3. Even paying that much, I had limited service in all my most frequented locations and almost every one of my calls ended up dropping at some point during the conversation.
  4. After almost a year of having the phone, and jail-breaking it to make it more useful, I just got sick of it. Apple doesn’t make it easy to customize anything and when you jailbreak it in order to personalize your iPhone, it makes it complicated to maintain apple software updates.
  5. Now that the Evo has come out and been on the market enough to drop in price significantly, I figured it was time to get my money’s worth in regards to product offerings and reliable service.
  6. And to boot, when my EVO screen breaks, I won’t have to break my warranty just because I’d rather have a 3rd party repair shop fix it than have Apple charge me 5x as much. Just sayin’.

I must say, it is sad seeing my iPhone sit on my desk, lonely and unused, but when rationality kicks in again- my EVO does everything (and much, much more) than my iPhone ever could have (Thanks Steve Jobs). It was getting on my nerves that Apple was limiting the capabilities of my iPhone so that they could constantly release new versions of the same phone, as a result, my new EVO phone has better functionality and can do more than the current iPhone 4.

It is safe to say that my $60-a-month, 1400-minutes, unlimited data, unlimited text messaging *and* 4G, is far better (and cheaper) of an investment. I am no longer following the footsteps of the mindless consumers that believe iPhone rules all.

Don’t get me wrong, I love my iPad and my new MacBookPro, but when it comes to phone service, I want what I pay for- and the iPhone just wasn’t meeting those expectations.

:: Six Months Later:

Hey All! I’m updating this post six months into my contract with Sprint and 6 months into using the less trendy but far more efficient HTC Evo phone. So far, it’s been smooth sailing. The phone, when plugged in to my computer, acts like any other USB storage device and I can simply drag and drop music, files, photos etc. onto the phone without using iTunes and without waiting an hour for the whole process to be completed. My phone service and reception have been great thus far. I really can’t complain about it. The 4G has worked great where 4G is available, the Apps in the Droid Market are seemingly unlimited and offer nearly every app that the iPhone does.

To be honest, I’ve been seeing a LOT more Droid phones out there, and everyone seems to be loving theirs just as much. Success!

If you’re thinking about changing from an iPhone to an Adroid- supported phone, feel free to ask me questions here. I’d love to help!

-Mia

My Life is a Movie.

08/26/2010

My life should be a movie, because really, sometimes I have a hard time believing it’s not a well-timed, perfectly constructed Romantic Dramedy.

Opening scene: Las Vegas, Nevada where 6 lb 4 oz Mia is born.
Fade out to Mia’s mom packing for California shortly thereafter, realizing Las Vegas is not the ideal place to raise her daughter– or even BE for that matter.
Cut To: Dad peaces out, leaving Mia and Mom for his 3rd, then 4th, 5th, later- 6th and eventually 7 wives-turned-divorcees. (Not all at the same time, obviously.)

In any case, the following scenes pave the way for an interesting childhood. Including scenes where my I am 5-years-old and flying alone to Vegas every other weekend to visit my father, where mom and I hop on a Harley Roadster and ride with 200k other Harley Davidson bikers to South Dakota, where I board a ship to set sail for three months and travel the world, and where my mom and I come back from a movie to realize our house has suffered from a devastating house-fire.

Like I said, Romantic Dramedy.

Where’d the romantic part play in, you ask? Good question.

Cut to: May 2010, Beverly Hills and Brentwood, California. Split screen-Guy and Girl meet on a dating site , and chat with each other each day during work. After a couple weeks, she finally decides to ask him if he wants to meet up after work for a drink- since they’re going in the same direction.

Fades to: 6PM, Girl ends up being early for this mysterious rendez-vous and gets in some shopping; scores 2 heels and an Apple product in under 30 minutes. She’s a pro.

Pan and Zoom to: Girl’s iPhone text message alert- “New text message from Jordan.”  The moment of truth…oddly enough, she wasn’t nervous. She picks up the phone and calls him, “it’s quicker than texting,” she rationalized. In actuality, she wanted to hear what he sounded like before meeting him. Is that so wrong?

Cut to: He’s standing on one side of the crosswalk, she’s on the other, they’re on the phone. “Walk” reads on the sign and before long she’s running to get him and turns them in the other direction- wait, why was she running? Excited? Already? He was cute and it was clear there was a connection from their earlier conversations.

Fade to: Guy and girl strolling the Santa Monica promenade after a few drinks (they forgot to eat dinner, as they were too involved in conversation), headed to watch the sunset when all of the sudden, they happen upon a 13,000-person audience gathered on the beach for a free Jack Johnson concert.

Before long, they’re laughing and running through crowds of people to find an ideal spot. She

pulls out her phone to capture this moment- the best date she’s ever had. They kiss- it was bound to happen. It was perfect.

Fade to: 12AM… they’re finally parting ways for the evening. After all, she ended up falling asleep in his arms while listening to music- it was about that time.

It was the beginning of something very special <3

Senior-itis of the 21st Century

08/07/2010

Senioritis: a sickness of which is a result of rejecting adaptations to technological advances of the current day. Also referred to as Senioritis of the 21st Century.

My grandfather’s old, true, but when it comes to high-functioning Seniors, he’s a prime example of one that does it all. He runs a newspaper for the Army’s 4th Infantry Division Veterans, owns a Commercial Real Estate company, drives up to his cabin an hour away each weekend and even shovels the cabin driveway of multiple feet of snow each Winter. So when he complains about the technological advances being “beyond [his] comprehension,” I reassure him that he’s more capable than he thinks.

Recently, we’ve convinced him to abandon the use of his archaic iMac desktop computer and to invest in a “portable, lightweight laptop,” to which he replied…”I like my old thing just fine, It works doesn’t it?”

Luckily, he grew rational when his old crapper kicked the bucket. I think my Grandmother getting an iPad made him realize that he should “get with the times.”

Well, my grandfather, knowing my allegiance to ever-improving technologies, forwarded me his email reply (Yeah, see? He knows how to do that) when another “Senior” friend of his sent him an “Invitation to Join Facebook.” I about died.

Take a look:

What a gem. Washington State Beauty

07/29/2010

You see, I’ve happened upon a gem and I’m not sure I want to share it with anyone. But because I’m such a nice person and happen to love writing about travel, I guess it’s in the stars that I tell you all about the gem that is Washington State.

After meeting my new man, and subsequently realizing I’d never been to his hometown/state, I finally ventured out to Washington just in time for his annual family camping trip. En route, I flew over Mt. St. Helens, Mt. Baker and Mt. Rainier at 30,000 feet and even caught a glimpse of Seattle. We made out way straight to the woods, a much needed respite from the mundanity that has been my schedule lately, in an area near Lake Kachess. For 4 days I was without internet connection or cell service, and boy do I miss it.

Here are some snapshots.

At first I thought this was Mt. Rainier, but as I look closer at the top, it looks like it has erupted at some point, making me believe it’s actually Mt. St. Helens… could be wrong, but it’s beautiful nonetheless. [I stand corrected...this is Mt. Hood. And has never erupted ]

Another shot from the sky. This, I believe, is actually Mt. Rainier. See how the top is still intact?

After a hike to the top, looking out at Lake Kachess. Simply beautiful.

A shot of seattle from the plane. I didn’t get to spend time in Seattle, as I was camping all weekend, but next trip I’ll definitely venture into the city.

A shot of the mountainscape adjacent to Lake Kachess. The last day we were here, I spent some time reflecting during sunset.

At dusk, and before mine and Jordan’s return down the hill, through the forest, in the dark.

When we returned, it was time to sit by the fire with Jordan’s family and mentally prepare for a return to the city. One I was definitely not ready for.

As you can see, Washington state is beautiful. I look forward to spending more time out there, and seeing everything it has to offer. I’d love to visit Puget Sound, Seattle, wine country, and hike some of Mt. Ranier. If you’ve been to Washington, feel free to comment with some recommendations!

Anatolian Food and Culture Festival

07/06/2010

For Mother’s Day my mother, who is often mistaken as my older sister, and I made our way down to Irvine to spend the day eating delicious kabob, watching cultural performances and buying trinkets from a slew of Turkish merchants at the Anatolian Food and Culture Festival.

The festival was equipped with culturally themed bounce houses for children, a mile-long wall of the chronology of Turkish history for the elders, historically dressed festival hosts and, well, food- for me.

Get me near any kind of food and I’ll eat it. Get me to a food festival and, ladies and gentlemen, we have one over-stuffed, slightly paralyzed Mia.

After inducing cataclysmic paralysis, I decided that there was no way to digest all the goodness I had just eaten unless I kicked my feet up and enjoyed some traditional Turkish dance.

I looked kinda like these guys:

Ok, maybe not exactly, but you get the idea.

After a bit more shopping and wandering around aimlessly, it was time to head out. With memories of Istanbul ’06 near and dear to my heart, it was tough to finally call it a day.

Captive and Captivating

06/03/2010

Both captive and captivating, she waits. Her eyes reaching out from behind the steel, longing for what once was.

While the masses saunter past her, the sound of her infant calf grows faint and like the human idiomatic expressions of her kind, her memory serves her well.

Perhaps too well, for it would be easier to forget than to long for what shall never be again.

elephant SD zoo

Photography by Jordan Larrigan

Rinse and Repeat

06/02/2010

Work has been picking up, and while I am most certaintly NOT complaining in the least- especially “in this economy”- it has left me with little time to myself. I finally published a blogpost- after nearly a month!- which feels pretty nice, and am making time to be a bit more social and meet new, exciting people.

My schedule, although chaotic, has not changed. I get up at 6:30AM, head to class, head home to change for work , leave at noon and head into the office, where I stay until about 6, to get home at about 7, to eat, then do homework, then shower and hit the hay. Yes, I do realize that was one VERY long run-on, but I also found it appropriate for the theme of the post, no?

Look forward to the days when my schedule isn’t so…y’know…rinse and repeat.

Burning Buildings, Explosions and Car Chases, The World Stunt Awards

05/15/2010

I ventured over to the Paramount Pictures studios to attend the RedBull-sponsored Taurus World Stunt Awards last week and found, to my surprise, a large, tightly knit community of thrill-seeking stuntsmen. The open bar drink menu boasted names like; the whiskey based “Collision Course,” the Vodka and Redbull combo called “Firewalker,” and others that were clearly apropos for the theme of the night.

I met risky drivers, high-fallers, fire specialists and fighting doubles within moments of walking in. It wasn’t long before someone approached me asking “So, what stunts have you done?” and with an outright “HAA!” I stated, point to myself shamelessly, “this girl doesn’t even do roller-coasters, nonetheless jump from the 5th story to land on the windshield of a vehicle!”

The night concluded with the awards ceremony for awards like “Best High Work,” “Hardest Hit,” “Best Stunt with Fire,”  and “Best Work with a Vehicle.” All of which I was extremely impressed by. Although there are stunt-pads and much coordination involved, the bodies hitting shards of glass from 80 ft in the air or the woman hanging from the ledge of a tall building, are all real people risking their safety for the enjoyment of people like you and me. Unless you’re one of them, wherefore you are owed a round of applause. ::claps::

I’ve been a busi-bee.

04/13/2010

Yeah, OK, so that was kind of corny.

In any case, I decided that I had to take a quick break from the madness that has been my life to post an entry. Things have been really great lately, business is keeping me busy (hence the title) and the close of the semester has been harvesting quite a bit of stress. Regardless, my spirits are high and while my energy is low, I’m managing to stay sane!

I’m in the process now of changing career lanes. I’m still on the same road, with more or less the same emphasis, but I’m leaning more in the direction of Social Media representation as the means by which I pay the bills.

I’ve been reading a lot of white papers and case studies lately by companies like Burson-Marsteller, Cohn and Wolfe and InkFoundry. I’ve also been looking in to internships at the aforementioned as well.

So, such has been my life. Late nights researching social media, putting off laundry day until it can wait no longer, and balancing financial independence with my last year at Pepperdine. Life is great.

The Future of Journalism

03/03/2010

The over-used and under-examined claim that Journalism is dead is one that I find both disheartening and extremely closed minded. In a day and age where nearly anything is possible, many are claiming that our free speech publications will no longer exist? So where is Journalism going if it isn’t dying?

Journalism isn’t dying, it is merely taking on a new shape; adapting to the ever-changing environment that we have created.

The Internet.

The first of two major issues in the industry is that with the emergence of limitless internet connection, blossoming social networks and an affinity for instant gratification among nearly every demographic, micro-blogging sites like Twitter, photo hosting sites like Flickr and Twitpic and hosts like WordPress are giving everyday citizens the ability to become citizen journalists.

Citizen Journalism is creating a new temperature for the industry; information is unbiased and honest, but the quality cannot be controlled. Because information is more readily available, and consumers are finding it to be convenient and unbiased, our traditional news sources are losing the following they once had.

The second major issue is we see today is that more and more people are finding their news on the Internet, but most of the papers are making money from their print advertisements. This, being completely ineffective, means the print newspapers will have to adapt to online endeavors and subsequently charge a fee for their offerings as well as make money from direct-targeted online advertisements. In order for it to be effective and efficient, however, each of the newspapers would have to implement this business model simultaneously and without wavering from the newly-set standard.

Just as technology gains momentum and adapts to our needs,

professions and skills must also adapt.

While picking up a bulky 4-section newspaper may not be completely convenient in our fast-paced lifestyles, it is the duty of learned Journalists to make moves to adapt to the needs of their readers.

Patrick Thornton, blog writer of The Future of Journalism, states very wisely that If you’re not willing to work on the Web, do more than write, get your hands dirty with code, blog, be a social media pro, etc, than journalism isn’t for you. Those currently working for publications should be hyper focused on making the same content available online as it happens in order to adapt to the changes in modern Journalism.

So, while most think Journalism is “dying,” I challenge you to explore the idea that yes, there are significant differences in the way we dole out news, but the change is both necessary and exciting. We need to take the future of journalism into consideration and initiate a renaissance of sorts. A rebirth of Journalism.

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