Do You Think We Are Slaves to Technology?

Do You Think We Are Slaves to Technology?

Do You Think We Are Slaves to Technology?

Technology in our world today is a blessing and a curse it seems. There are positive advantages to technology, like being able to look up important information about your flight out of LAX. Unfortunately, there are a few drawbacks as well. Generations like the “millennials” are labeled as disconnected because of their preference to using dating apps versus meeting someone in person. Face-to-face conversations seem to be in jeopardy, as people would rather send a five second picture through Snapchat instead of talking to the person in front of them.


Technology captures our attention for hours on end. If you were to ask a group of people how much time they spend on their phones/technology you’d probably get a bunch of vague answers. The truth behind this is that no one really know exactly how much time they spend with technology because we’re constantly looking at it. We don’t just check our social media once a day and call it good, we check throughout the day. It’s a part of our lives.


In the Journal of Media Education, a research study shows students in a class spend 20.9% of their time on their digital devices for non-class related purposes. The research also shows there has been an increase in student usage of technology in class from 2013 to 2015. This growth in technology usage only supports that it is increasingly capturing our attention.

Technology captures our attention by how it works. The vivid colors, sounds, and fast flashy movements on our screens keep our focus. Tristan Harris, a design ethicist for Google, explains how social media is designed to keep us checking our phones. According to Harris we check our phones on average 150 times a day. Technology captures our attention by giving us the illusion of choices and options.

Not only does technology limit our choices, it also makes us feel important. Our phones especially amplify this by the notifications. We start to become programed to look forward to how many ‘likes’ or notifications we get when we first wake up in the morning. We look forward to notifications because it can give us a sense of belonging. We feel connected to the rest of the world from our technology.

Other social media tactics used to keep your attention include:

  • Newsfeeds – They are always being “refreshed” with new posts or information to keep you scrolling through the site.
  • Likes – “Likes” have created a sense of popularity through social media. The more “likes” you get the more people must like you.
  • Social Obligations – Social media creates a social obligation to participate. You can’t just not reply to a text message, or email. If you don’t then that is considered offensive. Another example of social media obligations would be “follow for follow”. If Taylor follows Jordan on a social media site, then Jordan would feel obligated to follow Taylor back.
  • Auto play – This is when a video or music starts playing automatically once a page is loaded. This often leads to viewers watching or listening to something they originally did not intend to.

Companies who purposely upgrade their products with the intent to distract their consumers are not ethically sound. Technology should be a tool, not a distraction. Our social media use can be productive by: promoting an online business, getting information out, staying connected with family and friends. However it seems to be more distracting than useful.

Companies should have an ethical responsibility to not waste our time. Time is something that we can never gain and are always losing. If a consumer chooses to spend their time on their technology all day, that is their choice. However, if a consumer is being distracted by their phone because of choices the company made, that is ethically wrong


Would You Want to Fly with a Peacock?

Would You Want to Fly with a Peacock?

Would You Want to Fly with a Peacock?

Recently, a peacock made headlines at an airport. The interesting thing is, it didn’t make headlines for the reason one would suspect when hearing about a bird at an airport. This bird didn’t delay flights or damage a plane on the runway. No, it was trying to board a flight.


The story takes place at Newark Liberty International Airport where a woman tried to bring her emotional support animal onto a flight with her. The animal in question was a peacock. United Airlines decided to not let the bird onto the plane, despite the fact that the woman had purchased an extra seat for the bird.


For those unaware, emotional support animals are animals that aren’t much different than pets. Unlike services dogs, emotional support animals do not have any training. The only thing that distinguishes an emotional support animal from any other animal, is the doctor’s note that owner has that states the owner needs the animal for a mental or emotional need such as depression or anxiety.

United’s current policies toward emotional support animals and trained service animals is that the animal in question must sit on the floor in front of the passenger in question, and they cannot block the aisle in anyway. Knowing this rule, it is pretty easy to see why United didn’t want to let the peacock onto the plane, especially since their tails can reach anywhere from 4 to 5 feet in length.

Over the past few years, animal related incidents on planes have increased tremendously, which is why some airlines are enacting stricter policies with regards to animals on flights. Delta Airlines now requires that passengers with emotional support animals prove that the animal is well trained and is fully vaccinated 48 hours before the flight.

Flying can be a bit chaotic, since you never know who you will be flying with. Everyone can agree that they want their flight to be as peaceful as possible, and airlines are responsible for keeping that peace. This is probably why United denied the peacock access to the flight.


A New Freeway in Southern California?

A New Freeway in Southern California?

A New Freeway in Southern California?

Southern California is known for its sprawling freeways. These giant roads crisscross all over the region, creating an intricate spider-web of asphalt and concrete. Unfortunately, many of them are bogged down by large amounts of traffic, which makes driving across them long and difficult. In order to help alleviate some of that traffic, Los Angeles County officials are looking to build a new freeway.


This new stretch of 63 miles of roadway would connect the cities of Palmdale and Lancaster to Victorville and Adelanto. This would be the first freeway to be built in LA County in 25 years. The last one to be built was the 105 freeway, which turned many people off of the idea of building more freeways.


The construction of the 105 freeway was a bit of a disaster. The construction cost around $2.2 billion, which was well above its estimated price, and makes it the most expensive road ever built in the United States. The project displaced around 25,000 people, flat out violated environmental laws, and generates tons of noise and pollution daily. Needless to say, there are many people out there who are not thrilled at the idea of another freeway being built.

However, anyone who has recently tried to get between Palmdale and Victorville knows that the route is becoming increasingly more congested, even after projects that were meant to alleviate said congestion. Having an alternative route would make this drive much easier for many commuters.

What are your thoughts on a new freeway in Southern California? Will it help alleviate traffic and congestion, or will it cause too much harm to the environment?


Reasons To Do Your Taxes Erlier Than Later

Reasons To Do Your Taxes Erlier Than Later

Reasons To Do Your Taxes Erlier Than Later

The dreaded tax season is here. Hopefully you kept all of your receipts because getting your money back is the best thing out there. Unfortunately, we didn’t learn how to file taxes in school. If you were lucky, your parents were able to explain to you how taxes work. If not, you’ve had to rely on random tips, and Internet searches.


Taxes are confusing, but a few good tips on how to file them can make a major difference. Getting advices from friends, family, and co-workers is okay, but getting the correct information is important. According to Time.com there are 30 convenient tips to know when filing taxes.


Here are some of the tips:

  • Find out if you actually need to file
  • Have your social security number ready
  • Determine your filing status
  • Gather your documents
  • Gather your expenses
  • Understand which deduction is best for you
  • Don’t forget about charity donations/volunteer hours
  • Don’t forget about lotteries/gambling earnings
  • Beware of what you can’t deduct
  • Check your work twice, three times, or more.
  • Be cautious of scams
  • Know the deadline

That is a lot of information to take in all at once. If you weren’t confused before, and are now, hang in there. Just remember tax season only lasts until April. If tax season really stresses you out, you can file early. Sites like Turbo Tax highly recommend that you do start filing early. The more time you give yourself to file your taxes, the less stress you’ll feel. You won’t have to worry about cramming all your tax work in the night before they’re due.

Filing early is convenient, but also can be a juggling act. Employers have until the end of January to send out W-2s for the previous year. Most other documents needed for filing taxes typically have a similar deadline. This means that you will more than likely get all the information you need for filing around mid-February. From February to April you’ll have time to start your filing. If you start early without all your documents, be prepared to have to go back and fix things later.

The IRS typically starts accepting tax returns at the very end of January. This date of accepting returns generally changes by a few days every year. Once the IRS receives your tax return, it can take 21 days to six weeks to issue your refund check.

The sooner you send in your return, the sooner you’ll have your money. If you want to get more money, faster, file your taxes now.


The Disappointing Reality of Gun Violence

The Disappointing Reality of Gun Violence

The Disappointing Reality of Gun Violence

There are several universal laws that everyone should know, and typically follow. The problem with universal codes is that we assume everyone will follow those codes as well. Unfortunately, bad people do bad things. People break universal laws all the time, which is why we have services to help prevent this. If a law is broken there are consequences for the person who broke it. This leaves the rest of us shocked, confused, saddened, and sometimes mad.


With advances in technology we hear and find out about these shootings faster. This is good, but also bad. With the ability to find out more information instantly, we also tend to get told the wrong information. Facts get twisted and false information quickly gets shared across the country.


It is terrifying that you have to be prepared for these kinds of situation. Schools are starting to practice active shooter drills. Unfortunately, school drills aren’t practiced nearly enough, or taken seriously. School shootings are a real threat, and, quite sadly, are becoming more common.

Here are some recommend steps of action to take if you ever find yourself in a shooting:

  • Run away whenever possible
  • Know your escape routes if in a building
  • Think and react immediately
  • Don’t worry about your belongings
  • Grab a weapon if possible for self defense
  • Hide yourself if you can’t escape
  • Call 911, if possible
  • Barricade your hide out/lock any doors
  • Turn off your lights
  • Turn off anything that makes noise (cellphones, etc.)
  • Play dead

Engaging the shooter is not advised because you don’t know the motive, or reasoning they may or may not have. If you’re even in this kind of situation you’ll have to rely on your judgment and readiness.

To help prevent a situation like this from occurring there are also several steps you can take:

  • Report suspicious activity
  • Beware of your surrounding
  • Know your location’s lockdown procedures
  • Take classes for self defense

An active shooter scenario is something no one wants to be a part of, but we all need to be prepared. The increase in shootings, and the massive number of causalities should encourage you to take steps to be prepared.

The best thing you can do is educate yourself, and beware. Do your own research and learn how to be prepared.


Save Your Friend from Jail at a Price You Can Afford

Save Your Friend from Jail at a Price You Can Afford

Save Your Friend from Jail at a Price You Can Afford

Have you recently learned that one of your friends or family members was just arrested? If so, you are probably in a bit of a panicked state as you try to figure out how to bring him or her home. As you try to accomplish your goal, you are learning more and more about the bail process and coming to a rather depressing realization: bailing someone out of jail is an expensive undertaking. You do not think you have the funds necessary to help out your friend.

However, despite this thought, you keep looking for help. Finally, you find the solution to your problems at Bail Bonds in Lynwood. This is a California-based company that has been helping Californians afford their loved one’s bails for over 30 years. You know they will be able to help you too.


Bail Bonds in Lynwood provides all of their clients with personalized payment plans.


These plans are designed to work with each client’s unique budget to ensure they can afford to bail out their loved one. On top of that, clients with approved credit can qualify to get a bail bond with 0% down. This means that the client will not have to make a payment on the bail bond until a month after their loved one has been released from jail.

The bail agents at Bail Bonds in Lynwood are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. They will always be ready to assist you with bailing your loved one out of jail. All they need to get started is the name of your loved one, his or her birthday, and the county where he or she was arrested. Once they have that information, they will begin escorting you through the bail bond process and creating an affordable payment plan just for you.

Call 323-357-0575 or click Chat With Us now and you can get started right away.


Things that Actually Make You Happy

Things that Actually Make You Happy

Things that Actually Make You Happy

HUnfortunately life doesn’t come with manual or guide. In life we often get dragged down by the mundane. Routines become our way of life, and leave little time for having fun. The challenge many of us face is how to be happy. This simple question plagues many people’s minds on a day to day basis.

Endorphins, oxytocin, serotonin, and dopamine are all chemicals that contribute to your happiness. When we feel good, it’s usually because our brains have released one of those chemicals. These chemicals, also referred to as hormones, can be released for many different reasons. Exercising, stretching, laughing, and smiling can all help activate the release of these hormones.

When you exercise, your body releases oxytocin and endorphins. These hormones increase your happiness. Even through exercising may seem like a daunting task at first, it can actually improve your mood. The best part about exercising to feel happier is that the more of a regular routine you have, the more hormones will be released.

Laughing is an excellent source of happiness, but you’re probably thinking that you can’t control when you laugh. However you would be wrong. Studies have shown that if you fake laugh for over a minute, you will actually start laughing naturally. Yes, faking it till you make it works. Fake laughing relaxes your body, and releases just enough dopamine to trigger a real response. Also when you make a fool of yourself, you can begin to naturally laugh about it.

Smiling is similar to laughing when it comes to making you happy. If you force yourself to fake a smile for a certain amount of time, you’ll eventually trick your brain into releasing the happy chemicals. Fake smiling is more effective if you can see yourself smiling in the mirror.

Another great way to improve your happiness is dancing. Taking a moment of your day to let go, and dance around like a fool, can help relax your body. A relaxed body is more likely to release the hormones that improve your happiness and overall mood.

When you break down what makes you happy, there can be many factors. However there are scientific explanations for why you are feeling like you do. There may be physical factors, as well as mental ones. Just know that if you’re searching for a way to improve your happiness, trying these simple gestures can help you out.


Why Don’t You Get Your Money Back from a Bail Bond?

Why Don’t You Get Your Money Back from a Bail Bond?

Why Don’t You Get Your Money Back from a Bail Bond?

HWhen it comes to bail, there is something that many people might not realize. When a person rescues a friend or family member from jail by posting bail on their own, the bail money will be returned to them after the trial has come to an end. It does not matter if the person was found innocent or guilty, the money will be returned.

Some people know this fact, and then think it applies to bail bonds as well. These people fail to realize that bail and bail bonds are not the same thing. They may be similar yes, but they are two different things. Bail is the amount of money required to be paid to the court in order for a person to be released from jail. A bail bond is an agreement between a bail agent and their client in which the agent agrees to pay the full amount of the bail. In return, the client pays a percentage of the bail amount to the agent as payment for doing so. This is called a bail premium.

Some people mistakenly assume that the bail premium will be returned back to them after the trial is over, but that is incorrect. Bail premium is payment for the bail agent’s services, which are complete the moment the client has been released from jail. After that, the bail agent has held up their end of the deal, and has earned their payment.

This simple misunderstanding can cause a lot of confusion and anger. People are already in a bad mood when they find out that they need to post their loved one’s bail. Finding out that they actually won’t get their money back can be pretty upsetting news.

While not getting money back can be a bit of a drawback, posting a bail with a bail bond is a much cheaper alternative. Bail bonds only cost 10% of the bail that they are for, and they can be paid off with a personalized payment plan. This makes bail bonds much more affordable than posting bail on your own.


Don’t Hold in a Sneeze

Don’t Hold in a Sneeze

Don’t Hold in a Sneeze

HEveryone sneezes, and for some people it can be rather frustrating because it is never just one sneeze. Instead, they suffer a series of sneezes as their body tries to expel whatever caused the sneeze in the first place. Do to the annoyance that sneezing can cause, some people try to hold their sneezes in. They never considered that this could be bad for them.

When you sneeze, your body is trying to rid itself of an airborne contaminant that found its way into your sinuses. When sensors in your nose or sinuses are triggered, your airways begin to convulse in order to expel air, and the foreign particles, from the body. This air is shot out from the body at speeds between 35 to 45 miles per hour.

Sneezing is the body’s natural defense from keeping possibly contaminated particles from entering. When a person tries to hold in a sneeze, they are preventing their body from doing what it needs to. This can lead to serious problems, as one man recently discovered.

A 34 year old man in the United Kingdom recently suffered a weeklong stay in the hospital for holding in his sneeze. Whenever he felt a sneeze coming on, the man would clamp his nose shut and keep his mouth shut. This would cause his airways to balloon up when the body tried to sneeze. This led to the man tearing his pharynx, which is the part of the throat that connects the mouth and nasal cavity to the esophagus.

After a week, the man recovered and was able to leave the hospital. If you want to avoid this, then you shouldn’t hold your sneezes in. If you are trying to avoid the spread of germs, try to sneeze into your hand or the crook of your elbow. Better yet, sneeze into a tissue if you have one readily available.


Dealing with Difficult Co-Workers

Dealing with Difficult Co-Workers

Dealing with Difficult Co-Workers

Early on in our childhoods we’re taught to get along with others. We were told things like, “treat others how you’d like to be treated” and “sharing is caring”. If we ever faced a bully, or didn’t get along with others, we were told to take the high road. Now that we’ve grown up we face the challenge of dealing with difficult co-workers.

This becomes problematic because unlike in school, where our classmates changed every year, our co-workers rarely change. Even though we might not get along, we are unified by needing this job to make money. Having to deal with a difficult co-worker can be extremely stressful, and cause a lot of unnecessary pressure. This uncomfortable situation causes tension at work, making the job more difficult than it needs to be. So, how do you fix it?

According to Oprah, whether you’re dealing with a lazy boss, or an aggressive co-worker, poor work relations can affect the whole company. You need to be able to figure out the root of your problems with your co-worker. Was it a confrontation that made you irritated with him or her? Did they say something offensive? Is it just a problem you mentally created or can they fix the problem? Understanding the problem is the first step to resolving your issues.

After locating and understanding the problem, your next task will be getting to know your co-worker. If the problem is within their actions, you need to figure out their motivation for acting that way. Are they like this with other co-workers? Do they have unusual amount of stress causing them to behave this way? Maybe this is just how they are. Once you figure out their motive, you can address the problem head on. Maybe you just need to be blunt and talk to them. You also might need to involve your boss, or another trusted co-worker to be a neutral witness.

Dealing with difficult people is a problem that will occur constantly throughout your life. The challenge will be how you handle them. When problems begin affecting our work and attitudes, we need to address them.

Letting anger, or any other negative emotion build up over time is not good for you and can affect your health. Don’t let a negative co-worker have that kind of power over you.