2012: A Year-End Review – A Year to Forget Despite Being Surrounded By Reminders

20132012 is coming to a close in the next few days.  This year, I think more than ever, social media has truly transcended from time-wasting hobby to an important and vital tool to inform just as much as entertain.  As an aspiring filmmaker who has already tasted snippets of success because of social media, I am witness to a “changing-of-the-guard”  in how marketing and advertising as a whole has evolved in ways that no one could have possibly imagined.  With that in mind, the same can be said to the biggest stories of the year.

Social media like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and blog sites like this one have all become the greatest and most effective way to share information from news to viral videos.  So it should come to no surprise to anyone that social media helped crown the two biggest new artists of the year.  The first, would you believe, is a Korean rapper?

Psy showed up one day on YouTube with one of the most hilarious dance moves since M.C. Hammer.  It should be no surprise that they performed together this year at the Grammy Awards.  In case you’ve been living under a rock and have recently been freed, here’s the video that started it all for him.

Another new singer that gained fast fame is Canadian sweetheart, Carly Rae Jepsen whose hit “Call Me Maybe” became one of the most overplayed songs on the radio and resulted dozens of home-made music videos and improvisational dances by nearly everyone (both famous and not.)  Here’s the video that launched her career in 2012.

It wasn’t music alone that sent social media into a frenzy.  Many news stories (most of them tragic, unfortunately) helped reach national and international attention because of social media.  Not only did social media help bring attention to these stories, but many helped launch political movements and calls to action.  No truer is that than the cases of gun control after 3 shooting incidents, each more tragic than the next, in America.

George ZimmermanFirst is the case of George Zimmerman.  Zimmerman (a White Hispanic) is accused of killing Trayvon Martin (an African American teenager) in a predominantly White gated community in Central Florida.  Zimmerman was a volunteer neighborhood watch officer or agent or neighborhood spy – whatever you want to call it.  The story goes: Zimmerman saw Martin walking in the community who was there visiting a friend.  Zimmerman then tailed Martin while on the phone with 9-11 saying that he was pursuing a potential intruder on the property.  The 9-11 operator instructed him to stay back and wait for officers to arrive.  Minutes later… no one really knows what happens.  No witnesses.  At least no witnesses willing to come forward.  A few seconds and a few gunshots later and Martin was dead.  What was the “suspicious” teenager carrying in his pockets?  Skittles.  Many people in the African-American community called it a “hate crime” and “racially motivated.”  It received national attention and is the story of 2012 that truly began whispers about gun laws in America.  Zimmerman is awaiting trial.  You can read the latest news on the story here.

The Dark Knight shooting

The Dark Knight shooting

Another tragedy was the movie theater shooting in Aurora, Colorado.  James Holmes, a university student entered a movie during the midnight premiere of “The Dark Knight Rises” armed with several automatic and semi-automatic weapons in full riot gear and opened fire.  He killed 12 people and injured 58 others.  He is also awaiting trial in a maximum security prison in Colorado.  You can read an update on the story here.

Adam LanzaFinally, what I consider the most tragic shooting.  Don’t get me wrong, all gun violence on innocents are tragic (at home and abroad) but this one is freshest in my mind because it’s the most recent and because 26 victims were killed; most under the age of 7.  The shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Connecticut more than ever set social media in a frenzy when Adam Lanza walked into Sandy Hook Elementary, where his mother used to be a volunteer, and opened fire.  This more than ever re-opened not only the gun control question but the mental health question.  Here’s the latest.

Victory Hug

Victory Hug

Kate Middleton and Prince WilliamFor better or worse, we’ve had a Presidential Election which got surprising coverage and propaganda promoting voting on X Box Live, the Olympics in London, and the announcement of Kate Middleton and Prince William expecting their first child.  Kudos to them and to the Duchess having her morning sickness a story on ever major news network in the world.

What about me personally?  How has 2012 been for me?  I think overall it was a really good year.  For one thing I didn’t die.  That’s always a plus.  I celebrated my one year anniversary with my girlfriend and we now are living together.  Despite 2012 being considered a success to me, I am no where near satisfied.  I feel that 2013 will be the transitional year for me as a person and as a professional.  In 2013 I’ll be turning 30 years old and for me personally, certain milestones are also in order.  Stay tuned!  To all my readers: have a Happy New Year and thank you for letting me share with you.


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