Coachella revolutionizes festivals


The famous two-weekend music festival Coachella, known for its reckless spirit and hippie vibe, reunited big name music stars like Pharrell, Skrillex and Lana Del Ray and other indie artists into a massive music fest that brought approximately thousands of people together.

Coachella, held in the desert of Southern California, is now one of the largest music festivals in the world and has revolutionized the music festival industry, emerging new musical stars, celebrating a generation but also challenging preconceptions.

While the reviews for this year’s edition for Coachella have been positive, not all of it had to do with the music. The festival became a place to see and be seen and it’s not just a mere collection of concerts, but an actual event that broke the rules of technological innovation.

It’s a completely different world these days. Once upon a time music festivals led change and promoted art. Now, Coachella visitors don’t just go to discover new music and emerge in the experience, but rather to take “selfies” and upload them and to share as much information in their social networks as possible.

No surprise, Coachella is the most blogged, Facebooked and tweeted about event in the whole social networking universe. The event has no commercials, billboards or any evident form of advertising; instead, Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook and Twitter do all the work.

The festival has now evolved into becoming another platform for a celebrity fashion week, and for people to post about their “festival style.” The focus of Coachella shifting from purely music to now also fashion is further confirmed through H&M’s sponsorship.

Although they’ve been sponsoring Coachella for now five years, this year they’ve designed a new line with Alexander Wang’s partnership and Coachella was “Ideal venue to launch a new product” said

As social media continues to gain influence, music festivals beginning with Coachella are now focusing less on music but more on opportunities for social networking, fashion displays and indirect marketing. Similarly to Coachella, other music events are now also threated by fashion imagery domination.

What the World Cup may cost Brazil


We’re now only a month and a couple days away from the World Cup and games have been scheduled, stadiums built, tickets sold and teams determined. The first game will happen on June 12 between Brazil and Croatia and preparations for it continue.

The visuals and expectations for this major event are high and promising but, despite the government’s daily efforts to make it a successful and safe World Cup and all our hopes that the event will thrive, as a Brazilian, I believe it can go wrong in many different aspects.

As of now, four stadiums are completing their delayed construction and, in cities like Manaus and Belo Horizonte, new transportation projects have been cancelled or postponed and won’t be ready by June. Government investments in security aren’t enough to guarantee a safe environment for visitors and, on top of all that, there’s a frustrated and angry Brazilian population demanding for more meaningful changes to the country rather than simply a World Cup.

The inequality between classes, large contrast between public and private education and crime happening at the doorstep of my home were problems I grew up watching in Brazil. At times, it angered me seeing a country with so many improvements to make, investing so much money in an event that will last less than two months.

The past World Cup, which happened in South Africa in 2010, had less than 12 stadiums. So why does Brazil have to build more? The pressure made by FIFA, the organization behind the World Cup, to build these on time made the working conditions horrible, killing several workers.

It has been estimated that this year’s World Cup will cost approximately $30 billion. That is the cost of the three previous World Cup tournaments added together. All this money, if invested in education, health and infrastructure, would have been much more valued by us Brazilians.

While politicians argue that the World Cup is exactly what Brazil needs in order to improve, the situation isn’t so simple. The revenue generated by the games, tourism and shopping won’t necessarily become the budget that will be used for all these improvements. Part of this money will go directly to FIFA and a significant other, into the politicians’ own pockets.

Last year, Brazil was faced with protests that broke out after a rise in bus fare and brought millions of civilians to the streets all over the country. The protests symbolized the dissatisfaction of Brazilians towards the government’s work and their lack of concerns with Brazil’s current social problems. These are still happening on a smaller basis.

Seeing that Brazil has all these issues going on should it really be hosting an event this big? Don’t get me wrong, I’m a big fan of the World Cup myself and as a true Brazilian I love a good soccer match, but the government’s lack of commitment to our current social problems and focus on this large-scale event could only lead to further disappointment, frustration and revolt from the population.

Microsoft envisions our future


Microsoft has envisioned the future including many of their products and the software company has now opened a center presenting all the potential ways their upcoming technology will be transforming our lives.

At the time of the opening of the Microsoft Envisioning Center in Redmond, Microsoft officials released a video displaying this future reality. Despite most, this wasn’t a concept video, but an actual portrayal of how life will be like in five years with the technology we’re currently using. Furthermore, Microsoft argued this was no science fiction, but a concrete futuristic reality.

The Envisioning Center portrays a world where everything in controlled through voice and touch, and the technological gadgets we’re currently familiar with, like tablets are being revolutionized into a much larger scale.

The center depicts every home having a family wall — where everything can be controlled entirely from cooking to social networking. They’ve also designed a concept where work can be integrated between many devices with only a finger swipe and communicating through Skype, accessing the Internet, news, scientific or mechanical information anywhere in the house has become accessible.

In one of the blog posts, Steve Clayton, Microsoft Editor wrote:

“I like to think of it as a concept car that allows us to share what it might be like to experience future technologies with visitors, get their feedback, tweak, remix and discuss. It’s all part of advancing the trends we think have the greatest potential.”

Just like other technologies have completely revolutionized the way we communicate and connect within each other, Microsoft is also trying to continue this trend in a much deeper level within people’s homes and private environments. While the company says that their Center isn’t making predictions to exactly where technology is heading, the people who visit the Envisioning Center can have a clear perspective of how this fast-approaching future will be like.

Is eating disorder news risky?


It is no secret that Hollywood is an image-based industry and consequently a home to a large community of disordered eaters who strongly believe their careers depend on the adherence of an unhealthy nutrition in order to have the body profile idealized by the news media and admired by the public.

“What are you going to eat once this whole thing is over?” is common red carpet correspondent joke when interviewing Hollywood’s skinniest stars. But now, as technology makes the world each day more public, we now have access to these Celebrities  battle to remain thin on a daily basis and the pressures they face to have the perfect body are very great.

Stars like Mary-Kate Olsen, Demi Lovato, Lady Gaga and Amanda Bynes have in the past year announced and renounced their constant battles with food. These “confessions” are usually perceived by the public as acts of “bravery, inspiration and power” and met with applause and admiration.

While these adjectives certainly do ring a bell, stars don’t realize that talking so openly about their eating disorders may possibly bring more harm than good.

“Our culture needs to think of thinness as a potential sign of disease,” said Dr. Marcia Herrin, founder of the Dartmouth College Eating Disorders Prevention.

She further added, “It’s interesting. Its such a mixed message that they give: I used to have an eating disorder. And usually the person who is saying it is very thin. My sense is that we just assume they all have eating disorders.”

Nowadays, stars like Adele, who portray real life beauty, are hard to find. As a society, we have arrived at a time where most of our idols and role models are unrealistically thin and we accept and also obsess over the fact that they’re all likely to be physically and mentally ill.

The news media’s affect on body image has caused severe implications on young teenage girls making them believe that in order to achieve success they must be thin. And this is when these eating disorder confessions coming from celebrities can be problematic.

Young girls watch celebrities like Demi Lovato who has publicly admitted to have dealt with anorexia and bulimia since the age of 7, skyrocket to fame and remain with a constant food battle and perceive this as “inspiring”.

For every young girl that may feel inspired to seek for help after listening to these celebrity confessions, another one could be mislead by their words and use them as an example to build their own eating disorder.

“For the person who has the kind of genetic predisposition, when they hear that story they say, ‘I knew it took an eating disorder to get there, and I’m not going to believe that you can be okay and love yourself without being that thin’”. Said Keesha Broome, licensed marriage and family therapist.

I personally believe that since these stars play such a huge role in teenage girls lives, providing support and encouragement for them to share their body insecurities and find acceptance can be empowering, motivating and is essential.

But, publicly confessing eating disorders not only make these themselves look insecure and weak but also promote a behavior that can be dangerous to young girls influenced by the media.

Is Miley Cyrus just growing up?


In recent interviews, the super-star of the moment Miley Cyrus has said her wild behavior and changes in attitude are completely healthy and are just part of her process of maturing into a young woman. But is doing drugs, dressing provocatively, twerking and stripping really a part of growing up?

Born as Destiny Hope, nicknamed Smiley and now Miley Cyrus, began her career as the secret pop-star Hannah Montana 7 years ago. The hit series turned her into a phenomenon and she’s been in the spot light ever since.

Despite a couple of scandals, Miley has had during her career and teenager years involving leaked private pictures and drugs, in September 2012 jaws were dropped at her new pixie haircut and revealing wardrobe that unchained a whole new behavior and completely buried Hannah Montana and Miley as we know it.

Miley’s recent scandals, which includes her controversial performance at MTV’s Music Video Awards has been a cause of concern and criticism by many and not considered normal. Her sudden hyper-sexuality, lack of impulse and control, admitted drug use and obsession for animals are not typical adolescent behavior.

There is definitely no denial that former Disney star Miley Cyrus has burst out of her sweet, good-girl shell and suddenly grew up overnight… in a shocking way. The “We Can’t Stop” singer has continued to show a track of wild behavior that most recently included nudity, something she is now well known for. Photos from her Adore You remix cover show the star topless riding a horse, topless in her own twitter photos, covers of magazines and completely nude in her controversial Wrecking Ball video.

Continuing to add to her pattern of outrageous behaviors is her current weed addiction. In November 2013 Miley publicly lights up marijuana joint at MTV’s EMA stage in Amsterdam that had millions of views. Her love for smoking has never been a big secret but even other celebrities like Whiz Khalifa worry at the amount she consumes.

While Miley credits growing up as the main reason for her wild ways, this sort of behavior isn’t common for an average twenty-one-year-old. Although she is now an adult and able to behave as she wishes, she has a fan base of millions of girls who look up to her and that will impact on their behavior too.

But the real question is, has Miley really grown up or gone crazy or is this all a part of a master plan? It’s become evident from pop-starts like Britney Spears, Madonna and Lady Gaga that becoming controversial is the formula to being in the public’s eye and mouth. But despite the overwhelming success of her singles “Wrecking Ball,” “We Can’t Stop” and “Adore You,” Miley wasn’t nominated neither by the Grammy’s or the American Music Award for her music, which leads me personally to believe this wasn’t all part of a marketing strategy, but an addiction to attention and thirst for fame.

Although I am in no position at all to judge Miley’s choices, I believe artists don’t need to seek for attention and behave controversially to be recognized for their music and talent. Can Miley really call this change as part of growing up or is the pressure of being famous making her slowly loose her mind?

Coke’s ad: Controversial or strategic?


The 2014 Super Bowl achieved a record of 111.5 million viewers, making it the most-watched event in the whole of the USA history.

During the event, Coca-Cola, just like any other company who has millions of dollars to spend in commercials that will last seconds, aired an ad with “America the Beautiful” sung in Spanish, Tagalog, Mandarin, Hindi, Hebrew, Keres, French and Arabic.

If you are an open-minded, well-cultured person, you must be asking yourself: “Why is this so controversial, what is the big deal?”

But if you are heartless and emotionless, you must be infuriated at the fact that it was sung in every language but English.

Indeed, there are many things not like about Coke, but their idea that the United States is a multi-cultured nation should definitely not be of them.

The ad became so controversial, hash tags saying #fuckcoke trending on Twitter for hours.

According to the media coverage post, these were the tweets considered to be “normal responses” from the average American.



But, what if it was all a marketing strategy?

Using a weighted average of total views, subscriber growth, likeability and velocity, Touchstorm has actually worked out that the Coca-Cola ad was the most effective ad of the whole Super Bowl event.


And until today, according to E-consultancy, the Coca- Cola ad has been No. 1 for a whole consecutive week.

Whilst other brands released “sneak peaks” of their Super Bowl ad a day before its a release, Coca Cola chose not to do it.

Maybe because management feared an early revolt against it or maybe because they were just waiting for the big day. But #Americaisbeautiful ended achieving more views on its initial upload than any other ad.

So maybe the advert is not as controversial as it seems. Whilst media coverage has constantly repeating about people’s constant revolt against the ad, numbers show the message has been received more positively than what the extreme conservative politics and media has made us believe.