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Introducing Galzacs-The 2014 Edition

April 16th, 2014 Posted in Uncategorized No Comments

photo 1Over two years ago the media resource that is Galzcs Guide was born . A print and online resource of media specialists who are wiling to contribute to print, online and television debates about heir chosen area of knowledge. An essential for any journalist or radio producer.

Today we published the second edition of ‘Galzacs Guide’ which has hundreds of experts covering a wide range of specialties and topics, from science to business, human rights to social media. The list is immense.

Here, at Galzacs we believe passionately that expert voices need to heard by the widest possible audience and in Galzacs provides the tool to achieving that.

Are you a journalist, producer or presenter? If so, we are here for you. We want to help you find the voices your stories need and indeed your audience want to hear. In doing so, we are building a community of thinkers and curious minds who want to share their ideas with the world.

After all, is this not what great journalism is about?

To get an idea of the latest copy of Galzacs, we have put together a snippet of the reaction on and off Social Media. Click Galzacs Guide-The 2014 Edition

Boston Marathon Bombing- One year later

April 15th, 2014 Posted in Uncategorized No Comments

aerial-view-of-boston-at-sunset-10050793Today marks the one year anniversary of the 2013 Boston Marathon Bombings. The world was shocked to the core when it learned that two bombs had exploded at the finish line of the event, killing three including an 8 year old boy, and injuring an estimated 264 more. What should have been a happy, positive occasion was sordid with corruption, devastation and violence.

The suspect in the attack Dzhokhar Tsarnaev is currently awaiting trial facing over 30 charges, including murder.
Despite last years tragic events the city and the survivors stand united in a bid to remain stronger than ever. To show just how strong the City is and how far they’ve come in a year an inspiring video has emerged entitled ‘We will run.’ Director J.J Miller along with co-writer Rich Dimare created the inspirational video. The video highlights the passion and dedication of the city, determined to stand  tall, rise above defeat, and run.

For anyone who hasn’t seen the video check it out below.

Meanwhile over the past year victims of the tragic event have been working hard to rebuild their lives and their strength, courage and success is nothing shy of amazing. Here are just a few of their inspirational stories:

Jane Richard is the eight year old sister of Martin Richard who was the youngest person killed in the explosion. Jane was with her brother at the finish line along with their parents when the bomb went off  causing her to lose her left leg. The 8 year old spent 10 weeks in hospital undergoing various procedures before she was fitted with a prosthetic. Jane has now returned to school and her friends, family and teachers are all amazed at how well she has adjusted.

33 year old Adrienne Davis  dedicated her life to dance before she tragically lost the bottom part of her left leg at the marathon. However Adrienne was determined not to let her injury hold her back from doing what she loved, and she vowed to dance again. She fulfilled her promise to herself on March 19th where she took to the stage at the MIT Media Lab and danced with a specially designed Prosthetic. Adrienne hopes to one day make It onto dancing with the stars.

Rebekah Gregory was with her young son Noah and Boyfriend pete when the bomb exploded shattering her left leg from the knee down and ripping her right hand open to the bone. Pete also suffered extensive damage to his Achilles tendon, and Noah luckily sustained only minor physical injures. Rebekah has underwent a total of 16 surgeries in an attempt to save her leg. She now faces the decision to go through a 17th in the hopes that she may finally walk once more, or consider amputation. Despite the physical and emotional pain the family has suffered they remain strong and optimistic as best they can. Rebekah and Pete married on the 4th of April this year.

Many of the survivors unite under the premise of ‘Boston Strong’ which serves as a reminder that despite everything, they survived, they are here and they are strong. So on the Anniversary of last years tragic event we salute Boston’s Brave.

The 118th Boston Marathon takes place on April 21st where many of the survivors will once again be taking part.

Image: By puttsk, on FreeDigitalPhotos

#WeWillRun video:

Heart bleed bug, know what is and how to project yourself

April 10th, 2014 Posted in Uncategorized No Comments

trojan-horse-computer-virus-100100622Unfortunately there is a new computer security bug doing the rounds, and it goes by the name of heart bleed.
The flaw comes in the form of OpenSSL, a popular data encryption form that enables hackers who know about it to extract massive amounts of data from the services we use every day. Often times we take these services for granted and presume that they are secure, however we forget that things like these can and do happen.

This isn’t a simple bug in some app that can be quickly fixed, the vulnerability is in the machines behind services that transmit secure information like Facebook and Gmail.

Heartbleed is a flaw in OpenSSL, the open-source encryption standard used by the majority of websites that need to transmit the data that users want to keep secure. It basically gives you a secure line when you’re sending an email or chatting on IM.

Encryption works by making it so that data being sent looks like nonsense to anyone but the intended recipient.

Occasionally, one computer might want to check that there’s still a computer at the end of its secure connection, and it will send out what’s known as a heartbeat, a small packet of data that asks for a response.

Because of a programming error in the implementation of OpenSSL, the researchers found that it was possible to send a well-disguised packet of data that looked like one of these heartbeats to trick the computer at the other end into sending data stored in its memory.
Everyone is likely to be affected, however it isn’t an issue on your own personal computer or your phone- it’s in the software that powers the services you use.
To protect yourself you should change your online passwords, especially for services where privacy and security are major concerns.

The researchers who discovered the flaw let the developers behind OpenSSL know several days before announcing the vulnerability so it was fixed before word got out on Monday. Most major service providers are already updating their sites, so the bug should be less prevalent in the coming weeks.

Source: Business Insider

Image:Victor Habbick, on FreeDigitalPhotos

Prismatic the personalised app built around you

April 10th, 2014 Posted in Apps, Content, Social Network, Social Platforms, Social Tools No Comments

prismaticSometimes trawling through the news and net to find engaging content can be difficult and time consuming. Especially when you are searching for topics that are relevant to your interests. However Prismatic is a handy little app that solves this problem instantly!

The app uses your existing social networks and analyses them to bring you news and content that’s relevant to you, based on your interests and location.
Prismatic can tap into your other networks like Facebook, twitter and google+ and build you a customised list of content based on what you engage with most on these other platforms. And it’s free!

The app will build a personalised newsfeed for you based on what it finds. We think it’s pretty clever! If you’re not happy with the content the app is selecting for you, you can also customise what you’re shown by selecting various key words that appeal to you. For example food, animals, gardening, media, photography etc.

Prismatic is similar to the popular site and app ‘Stumble upon’ which shows users various content from across the web based on their selected key words. Users can’ like’ or ‘pass ‘ on what they are shown. Both of these apps are a great way to uncover some undiscovered gems on the internet, whether it’s a tasty recipe, a fascinating article, beautiful photography or just some light hearted entertainment, with apps like these you’re guaranteed to find what you’re looking for.

We’d definitely recommend checking out prismatic, though be warned, it can become quite addictive!

Image: Prismatic

The Irish State Visit- A Reflection

April 9th, 2014 Posted in Journalism, Media, Storify, Storify No Comments

parliament-1001719 As the tri colour blew over Windsor castle and the London Tower took on a green illumination yesterday afternoon, President Michael D Higgins was welcomed into the home of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. This sparked possibly one of the most symbolic moments in Anglo-Irish Relations in the past few decades, cementing a friendship between two, once conflicting, neighbours.

One could say however that it is a testament to the rapprochement in Anglo-Irish Relations since the signing of the Good Friday Agreement in 1998 that, historic as Mr. Higgins’ visit is, the stakes involved in such a high-profile event are much smaller than in 2011 when the Queen set foot on Irish soil.

However the reaction to the first ever visit of an irish President to Britain was palpable in a very positive light from the streets of London adorned with both the Union jack and tri colour blowing in unison right down to the thousands of tweets which adorned our newsfeed. The significance of this historical moment could not be over shadowed. Furthermore it was perfectly fitting that the trip, one centered around culture and the many Irish in Britain, would be carried out by a poet and writer who represents every ounce of Irishness having served as Minister for Arts in the Labour Fine Gael coalition of 1994-97.

Last night however was the moment we had all been waiting for, A northern Ireland ‘themed’ reception (a gentle nod towards the peace process no doubt) and of coarse the keynote address by President Higgins in Windsor. One which left many with a lump in their throat. In keeping with his style and also the theme of the evening, he addressed the Queen and the 160 guests with a toast bearing the theme of friendship and ‘living in the shadow of each other.’ The troubled past was not without mention however, on both sides, which instilled a lasting echo amongst those listening within and outside Windsor castle last night.

The significance of the this visit however is not alone in the fact it is an Irish President’s first but more importantly in the fact that these two leaders could sit next to each other behind once ‘enemy lines’ and acknowledge the great friendship which has now blossomed which is testament to the peace process 14 years ago.

Here at MediaContact.ie we have put together a story documenting the past few days which demonstrates the reaction both on and off social media to this truly historical day. Watch it here https://storify.com/mediaflash/irish-state-visit.html 

 

Image: Nicholas Tarling at freedigitalphotos.net

4 charity campaigns embracing social media

April 3rd, 2014 Posted in Campaign, Charity, Uncategorized No Comments

pink-donation-100201446Social media is easily the most influential and far reaching platform there is and  the majority of organisations and charities are aware of this, and are making use of  it’s power and potential. Many organisations have truly embraced social media and have successfully embedded it into their fundraising and marketing strategies.  Which is why we here at mediacontact.ie thought it would be a good idea to highlight some of the charities we feel use social media really well to advance and promote their various campaigns.

So here we go

1.The Irish Heart Foundation: The irish heart foundation is a wonderful charity that makes excellent use of social media. The foundation uses twitter to promote their #HappyHearts initiative which sees volunteers around the country raising much needed funds by selling happy heart badges. This year the charity hopes to raise vital funds in order to deliver a national CPR campaign via their happy hearts appeal which is taking place the 15th-17th of May. See more about how to get involved here 

You can also follow the organisation at @Irishheart_ie

2.Pieta Hosue: Pieta house is the charity at the centre for the prevention of self-harm and suicide. The charity’s main fundraising initiative is their ‘Darkness into light’ campaign which takes place Sunday May 10th. Darkness into light is the pieta house annual 5k walk/run which begins at 4.15 in the am, and finishes just as dawn is breaking. Hence the clever name! Again the charity makes wonderful use of social media to promote the event, by sharing engaging content and interacting with followers and encouraging people to take part. For more information on the darkness into light campaign see here.
Follow the organisation at @PietaHouse

3.The Irish Cancer Society- Another charity which benefits massively from social media is The Irish Cancer society. A couple of weeks ago saw over 1m raised as part of the social media craze #Nomakeupselfie. The trend actually wasn’t initiated by the the charity itself, which goes to show just how much of a powerful platform social media is. However Daffodil day, the charities main initiative took place last Friday the 28th of March and is always a huge success due to the charities hard work and dedicated promotion.
Get involved and follow the charity at  @IrishCancerSoc

4.Aware: Aware is the leading charity dedicated to promoting positive mental health. The charity offers support and information to those suffering from depression, bi-polar, PND and more. The charity transcends the very real message that it’s okay not to feel okay. Saturday the 12th of April will see the Phoenix Park 5K/10K Run which is in aid of Aware. Again, much like the others Aware has  a very strong and influential online presence. See more about the Phoenix Park run here
Support Aware and follow  @Aware

Of course there are a vast amount of charities out there who are all making fantastic use of social platforms to promote their various campaigns and events. This is just the tip of the ice berg. Also don’t forget the Flora’s Women’s Mini Marathon is also taking part this June Bank holiday on the 2nd. The marathon is an excellent opportunity for women to run, walk or jog for a charity of their choice and it also see’s a lot of funds raised for some lesser known charities!

Yesterday was World Autisim Awareness day so there’s always something going on somewhere and it’s nice to be aware of these things. That’s why social media is great for these charities, because it gets the message out. If you’re thinking of donating or doing something for charity, you can find a complete list of charities here at www.mycharity.ie. No matter how big or small, it’s always great to give back.

International Children’s Book Day- Staff Picks

April 2nd, 2014 Posted in Books, Mediacontact.ie News, Reading, World events No Comments

ID-10083617Today is International Children’s Book Day. April 2nd was chosen as the day to promote the awareness of young readers, as it’s the same date as Hans Christian Anderson’s birthday, author of the classical “The Little Mermaid”.

The day is organised by the International Board on Books For Young People-IBBY, with the aim being to promote books and reading to young people.  IBBY was founded in Zurich, Switzerland in 1953 and today there are 70 National Sections from all parts of the world.

To celebrate the Mediacontact team started to reminisce about our favourite childhood books. We began to remember cherished memories of Readathon’s, mobile libraries and pop up bookshops coming to schools.

We all have fond memories of reading and sharing books as a child and it’s something we all continue to enjoy as adults.

Some of the staff decided to share their favourite children’s books-

James:

Goosebumps- This children’s horror fiction series really lived up to its title. It was scary and unpleasant and generally ended with an exciting twist. The author, R. L. Stine released over sixty titles throughout the nineties. The books also went on to become a popular kids television show. James read every single one and even though they frightened him, he couldn’t put them down. His particular favourite was “Say Cheese or Die”.


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April Fools 2014-The Best on the Web

April 1st, 2014 Posted in Blogs, Google, Humour, Internet, Online, Uncategorized, Viral, World events, Youtube No Comments

one-eggs-100247249Its that time of the year again the first day of April and the day when all those gullible unsuspecting people amongst us are taken advantage of with sly jokes and pranks. Yes, it’s April Fools’. However, today isn’t just about physical practical jokes anymore, it looks like the internet is pulling a few tricks out of the bag too.

For the day that’s in it, we here at MediaContact.ie have picked some of the best jokes on the web.

1. Google announced that Youtube was in fact, all along, an 8 year experimental competition to choose the best video of all time and the site is now ready to shut down and announce the winner.

2. Google Nose – emits a smell for whatever you type into the search engine, after you press enter. No doubt there were at least a few gullible people sniffing around their computers this morning. Now that I’d love to see!

3. The Journal has announced a new version of its paper titled ‘Yournal’ whereby readers can contribute to articles and edit them as they wish.

4. Domino’s: For those savages amongst us, Domino’s is here to help with the introduction of what they call an “Edibox”. To put it simply, it’s an edible pizza box. For those of you who thought their days of cramming that square box into the round bin were over, sadly this is also a joke.

5. Closer to home in Waterford or Jurassic City as it could now be known, a dinosaur fossil “has been found.” News circulated this morning that fossilised remains of a 62 million-year-old unidentified species of dinosaur was discovered at an archaeological site in Waterford at the weekend. The article went on to state plans to turn this coastal city into a Jurassic Theme Park, Orlando Style! Perhaps less believable but entertaining all the same.

Are you a serial April Fools victim or an annual devious prankster? Have you played a good April Fools’ Day prank on a colleague or unsuspecting friend? Tell us about it in the comments section below!

Source: The guardian, www.pocket-lint.com

 

Images: rakratchada torsap at freedigitalphotos.net

Mumtrepreneurs Making their Mark

March 27th, 2014 Posted in Uncategorized No Comments

going-to-school-10043344As Mothers Day approaches, perhaps it is fitting to recognise those Mammys, or Mumtrepreneurs as they are now known, who are making a mark for themselves in the business world whilst also balancing the daily task of raising a family.

First the question must be asked? What exactly is a Mumtrepreneur?

Mumtrepreneur a  relatively new term, having only been introduced to the Collins English Dictionary in 2011, is the word given to a woman who combines running a business enterprise whilst rearing a family. Perhaps you could say a Superwoman of sorts!

We all think our mothers are the best, and rightly so but what ‘Mammies’ exactly are rocking the Business World in 2014. We here at Mediacontact.ie have taken a snippet of our favourites based on business idea, likeability and of coarse their standing on the social media platform. These are women who have learned to succeed both in the boardroom and the playroom.

Here are our favourites:

1. Imen McDonnell 

This is the woman behind the increasingly popular Farmette blog. Farmette is a diary of sorts, a sneak peak into the life of New York City Slicker turned Irish Farmer’s wife. Yet, when circumtacnes changd for Imen she decided to embrace this new identity of mud and wellyboots and launch a food blog. Proof of her success is not only in the pudding but also in her current production of her first book The Farmette Cookbook  due to be published in 2015. In addition to all this she also makes excellent use of Social Media. Her Twitter page is worth a follow @ModernFarmette.

2. Dee Seewell 

Community Gardening Tutor, environmentalist, and multiaward winner at Blog Award Ireland 2013 including Best Overall blog; Dee shows people how to grow their own vegetables without chemicals and to lead more sustainable, self-sufficient lifestyles, causing as little impact to the environment as possible. Established in 2009 Dee saw an opportunity which recognised the effects of the recession, prompting many cash-strapped consumers to return to their roots and thus along came Greensideup. Key to her success has been through her clever use of Twitter, Facebook and indeed her blog to engage and communciate with her customers and ultimately build a strong following. Follow Dee at Greensideup.ie or @Greensideupveg.

3. Jack Monroe 

This woman is just plain cool. From her blog to her recipes, even her look Jack Monroe just oodles character and charisma or perhaps you could say the ‘x factor’ when it comes to business and social media.  Her blog, ‘A Girl called Jack’ started out when she found herself living on the realm of poverty with little to survive on. Hence the focus of her cheap meals and recipes for under a tener. Whats inspirational about this woman is the fact she started from nothing, writing blogs on her pay-as-you- go Nokia (she had no computer) . This soon developed into a food blog of how to feed herself and her son for under a tener. The result of her success rests in a recipe column on ‘The Guardian’ newspaper  as well as being an Anti-Poverty Campaigner for Oxfam and Child Poverty Group. In addition to all this, the icing on the cake (excuse the pun) was the publication of her very own cookery book in February of this year, a far cry from the desolate days of blogging on her measly Nokia just 18 months ago. Follow Jack on twitter @MsJackMonroe. She really is one to watch!

Happy Mothers Day ladies! We salute you!

Source: agirlcalledjack.com, Farmette , Greensideup,

Image: digitalart at freedigitalphotos.net

Simple changes with endless potential on Galzacs.com

March 26th, 2014 Posted in Galzac's Guide, Ireland, Journalism, Media, Mediacontact.ie News No Comments

85dc7dodxzhgoa0839flGalzac’s Guide to Expert Sources has been on the go for four years with the official brand being launched in June 2012.

We’ve come so far in such a short space of time and we’re grateful to everyone who has been involved in the service.

Our sole aim has always been to connect people with certain skills, expertise and knowledge with the media. The way the service works is simple. Experts send us their story ideas and then we make sure that journalists all over Ireland receive them through our Galzac’s newsletter. The newsletter goes out first thing every Monday and reaches thousands of journalists.

The feedback we have received from both experts and journalists has been extremely positive.

So this got the Galzac’s team thinking about what we could do next. Our aim is to be constantly striving to give a better, more innovative service.

This resulted in us making a change to our website,  galzacs.com


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