Snapchat as a Web 2.0 Technology

by Alec Rudolph, Drew Pearson, and Paul DiPasqua

The evolution of Snapchat is an important one because, if not for this evolution, you and all your friends wouldn’t have an app to use for showing people pretty much everything and anything remotely entertaining or stupid (or both) during your day. It has become one of the most popular mobile apps that can be downloaded to your iPhone or Android smartphone – A 2014 study revealed that 77 percent of college students surveyed use the Snapchat mobile app daily, a number that seems a little low in 2017 since it has exploded in popularity. So now, a snapshot of Snapchat’s ever-changing features should be able to paint a picture of how it has risen to prominence among millennials.

September 2011 – Just Photos

Upon its release, Snapchat enabled you to send pictures to your friends directly from the app, making it the perfect time-killer for bored high school students.

December 2012 – Videos

Hate it or love it, this innovation is the reason why your feed is full of concerts that you don’t care about whatsoever. Yet, it’s also the reason Snapchat began to grow in popularity.

Best Friends

Shortly after the introduction of videos, Snapchat allowed you to see your friends’ top three friends. Perhaps a buzzkill for those who did not want their snap-receivers publicized, Snapchat has since removed this feature and only you have access to your “best friends list”.

January 13 – Snapsterpieces

This feature brought out everyone’s inner artist by allowing you to make everyday things magical, like this cat.

February 2013 – The Growth

By this point in time, over 60 million snaps were being sent per day, averaging out to about 700 snaps per second.

October 2013 – Story Time

Something that now seems to be the main reason for using Snapchat wasn’t actually a feature until over two years after Snapchat’s creation. It is hard to believe that the introduction of unlimited views of your best friend’s (or worst enemy’s) pictures and videos for 24 hours effectively changed social media forever.

December 2013 – Replay

Prior to this, once you viewed a snap sent to you by a friend it would vanish forever. With the replay feature, a viewer can replay a snap ONCE a day, so choose carefully who you choose to replay.

May 2014 – Snap(CHAT)

The ability to actually “chat” on Snapchat is probably my favorite. It’s pretty funny when someone talks to you about your Snapchat conversation the next day but you have no recollection because sent messages are wiped away into empty bubbles an hour after sending.

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July 2014 – GeoFilters

The location-based service that allows users to unlock certain filters based on their location is a cool way to interact with users, as they can draw and submit their own GeoFilter for any location they please.

 August 2014 – Live Section

Snapchat introduced us to a “Live” section allowing people to follow events live. This is where most of my time is wasted right here.

October 2014 – Advertisements

You probably haven’t even noticed because you just tap through them, but two and a half years ago Snapchat introduced the ability to advertise on the app.

November 2014 – Snapcash

Meant to make sending money to friends more convenient than closing the Snapchat app and opening Venmo, Snapchat began to allow users to send money by linking a bank account and simply typing “$” to begin a transaction.

November 2014 – Sponsored Stories

Highlighting big events such as the AMA’s and the Super Bowl, sponsored stories allow users to upload their snaps to the sponsored story if they are at the venue.

January 2015 – Discover Section

Unless you are REALLY bored, like I often find myself, this is a feature that is seldom used. However, if you do stumble into the discover section you can view content from brands like ESPN, CNN, Vice, Warner Music, National Geographic, Yahoo News, and others.

April 2015 – Emoji Hidden Meanings

To be honest, I had no clue what the emojis next to my friends’ names mean. So, I did some research and now they make way more sense. If you have the same issue, this should be able to help:

May 2015 – Extreme Growth

Snapchat reached 100 million active users, who were sending approximately 400 million snaps per day.

July 2015 – Gif Profile Picture

This feature enabled you to have a profile picture by taking 5 pics of yourself, which would automatically be turned into an animated gif for your profile picture.

July 2015 – Edit Mania

Snapchat figured it was time to allow you to swipe through filters, position text and emojis, show the time, temperature, or even how fast you are going (DONT SNAP AND DRIVE), because these are all clearly very important for everyone to know.

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September 2015 – Face-altering filters

I have realized that I made a mistake by saying sending actual chats on Sncapchat is my favorite feature, because it’s actually this. To describe it in one hyphenated word: life-changing.

April 2016 – 80 MORE CHARACTERS!

In case you were having trouble typing your latest novel on Snapchat, they finally introduced a new character limit to add 80 more characters of typing in a snap.

January 2017 – The Stats

Total Number of Monthly Active Users: > 300 million

Total Number of Daily Active Users: 100 million

Percentage of US Social Media users on Snapchat: 18%

Number of Snaps created Per Day: 1 million

Percentage of Daily reach (18-34 years old) in America: 41%

Percentage of users younger than 34: 71%

Percentage of Users aged between 18-24: 45%

Number of Snapchat Daily Video Views: > 10 billion

Percentage of U.S. Millennial Internet Users regularly using Snapchat: 30%

Percentage of Total US Digital population reached: 11%

Snapchat as Web 2.0

By constantly updating its features and allowing for more dynamic interactions between clients and servers, more engaging webpage displays and applications, and ultimately more interactive and participative user-to-user interactions with little technical knowledge required, Snapchat is a textbook example of Web 2.0.

 

 

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Celebrities and Social Media

by Alec Rudolph, Drew Pearson, and Paul DiPasqua

In Neil Alperstein’s essay, “The imaginary social world and use of media figures in advertising”, he points out that the knowledge of media figures is an important part of our everyday social interactions. He explains how effective media figures are in advertising due to the fact that they serve as role models to many and function as an outlet for positive and negative feelings to be vented. He also talks about the illusion of intimacy which is when the media figure addresses the audience directly to create a more personal connection with the viewer.

Our first celebrity is Seth Rogen. He is an American actor who stars and sometimes directs comedies. He is currently active on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, though they serve different roles. He is not very active on Instagram or Facebook, as he has not posted on either since October 2016. He doesn’t mind interacting with other celebrities.

Me and Snoop at #HilarityForCharity. That was amazing

A post shared by Seth (@sethrogen) on

Seth is much more active on Twitter, often using his comedic popularity to his advantage by adding satirical twists to political news. He clearly has more liberal views, so during the election he often sided with Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders while bashing Donald Trump. He does not endorse any products but his own, such as his recent film Sausage Party in which he starred and directed, or more recently the AMC TV show Preacher, of which he is the executive producer.

Stephen A Smith is a very well known sports broadcaster and analyst. He is very active across Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter (he has over 3 million followers). Often times his radio station goes live on Facebook, where thousands of fans tune in to listen. He is also very interactive with his fans on twitter, often responding to hate and rebuttals from angry fans. Smith is known to be very over the top, especially concerning “THE WEEEDUH”.

Smith does not endorse any products or companies on social media except the one he works for, ESPN. He also often tweets about and retweets tweets involving the NBA, NFL, and NHL, but he is not so much endorsing those organizations as much as he is being a fan. He was in a commercial for Alberto Beef Jerky, but that is the only recent advertisement he has appeared in.

Translating Advertising

by Alec Rudolph, Paul DiPasqua, and Drew Pearson

In the article Translation Advertising: Painting the Tip of an Iceberg, Marieke de Mooij writes that although global advertisement may have worked in the past, we are entering a new era of advertising in which there are factors that contribute to the effectiveness of an advertisement. These factors can all be traced back to a central idea: cultural values. Different cultures view the world in different ways. However, global advertising methods are being used because they are not only effective to the majority of viewers, but they are much cheaper. People who utilized these methods believe that, if done correctly, their ads could be “translated” by other cultures because they send a universal message of some sort that everyone could understand. However, some cultures may view attempted universal messages differently than others, so de Mooij writes that it is necessary for advertisers to incorporate culture-specific aspects to their ads to increase effectiveness. Cultural factors such as language, cultural symbols, and individualist/collectivist values are a few of these aspects. In this commercial, FedEx uses a prehistoric setting to get the message across. The idea is that educated people across the globe can understand what is occurring, since they presumably know about cavemen, dinosaurs, etc.

 

My Story Project

This topic was an easy choice for me. I started playing lacrosse sophomore year of high school and fell in love with it for a while, constantly watching YouTube videos about the sport. But I never fully understood how the sport originated. I only knew it came from Native Americans, but I didn’t know when, where or why. With that being said, I was excited to do this project, or at least until I realized I hadn’t a clue on how to make videos such as these. I am not the most tech-savvy person by any means, so the making of this video as a whole was a challenge. I used “Easy Movie Maker”, which was already installed onto my laptop. It was not very easy. I especially had trouble with the audio, as I was not able to lower the volume of the music when I wanted to. However, I am satisfied with the work I did.

Blade Runner

by Alec Rudolph

I almost never see new movies, particularly action and sci-fi. It seems like countless films that fit those genres have been made over the last few years.  The short reason is none of them appeal to me. The long reason is this: there is always too much focus on visual effects and big booms and not enough focus on the characters and the actual story. A great example of this is Jurassic World. A film with so much potential, it was ruined by completely unrealistic and over-the-top action sequences and sinfully poor character development. The movie failed to connect to the audience. I anticipated the same experience with Blade Runner, especially with the idea of some bounty hunter in the future whose job it is to “retire” strange life forms that come to Earth. It felt like too much.

What I instead found was a futuristic masterpiece which I should have expected from legendary sci-fi director Ridley Scott. Not only was the movie visually appealing, but it had the character development that makes a film great. The action was not over the top, rather  most of the scenes were intense and filled with emotion, and emotion is what develops characters. The audience is able to identify with their emotions, especially in scenes such as the Voight-Kampff machine test. In that scene, not only is Leon presented with a situation intended to spur emotion, the audience is as well. This is one example of the “human” aspect of the film that makes it great.

This “human” aspect is something that is missing in many films today. It is what Blade Runner does differently. After all, the movie is based upon finding what makes us human, finding what distinguishes us from all other forms of life. That is how humans find replicants. But when we attempt to find what makes us human, we discover that there may not be anything that makes us human at all.

This is where a steady uneasiness comes from in the film. We should expect the humans to act more human so we can distinguish them from replicants, but they do not. The civilians on the streets are all dressed the same and are all walking in an orderly fashion. The replicants act more human than humans do. Rachael is proven to be a replicant by Deckard, but we cannot help but see the emotion in her eyes more than anyone else’s.

Although replicants are supposed to be the non-human life form, Scott shows that there really is no one thing that makes us human. Replicants and humans are essentially the same. Our memories will forever be “lost in time” when we die.  We all die at some point, leaving our precious memories behind, no matter what kind of creature we are. So is there something that makes us human, or are we just like all other forms of life, spawned here to live out our lives with no particular direction then die? This underlying question far surpasses the visual effects and futuristic setting of the film, and that is what makes Blade Runner great.

The Three Hour Rule

by Alec Rudolph, Paul DiPasqua, and Drew Pearson

Because the learning processes inherent in public broadcasting play a crucial role in the development of knowledge and participation in citizenship, children’s programming has been subject to multiple rules and regulations over the last few decades.

Although the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) of the United States has been in place since the Communications act of 1934, the Children’s Television Act (CTA) of 1990 marks the first time that children’s television became specifically regulated.

The CTA was met with much displeasure from parents and children’s advocacy groups, as well as broadcasters, after it was unanimously passed and enacted in 1990. Broadcasters were uncertain how to respond to the demand that they serve “the educational and informational needs of children”, causing parents and children’s advocacy groups to be upset at broadcasters.

The rules on children’s programming that the FCC has adopted range from weekly scheduled core programming, to commercial time limits during shows aimed at children under 12 years old, to sex-role stereotyping in programs that have an effect on children’s understanding and development of sex roles. But there is also the “Three-Hour Rule” — broadcasters must air at least three hours of educational television for children per week in order for the FCC to renew their license — which is part of a 1996 mandate. This regulation was unanimously passed by the FCC, and is originally a part of the 1990 CTA. However, the mandate set a hourly quota for stations serving educational and informational needs of children.

In order to counter many stations that were airing dubious cartoons as “educational programming”, or educational programming during early morning hours, the new preemption rule tightens the definition of educational programming as programming scheduled to air once per week at the least and must also air on an ordinary basis.

The idea of this rule implemented by the FCC is that exposure to educational television would prevent the children from going brain dead from watching television purely for their entertainment. And the new additions such as the preemption rule ensured that children would be exposed to educational television at some point during the week.

“Roger That”

by Alec Rudolph

To quote Robert Kraft, the owner of the now 5-time Super Bowl Champion New England Patriots (all five have been won under his ownership), “A lot has transpired over the last two years. And I don’t think that needs any explanation”. This is true. A lot has happened to the Patriots organization over the last two years, and if you have been consistently following the team for the past two years then it does not need any explanation. But that is not the case for everyone, so here is the explanation.

After New England defeated the Seattle Seahawks in Super Bowl 49, a report emerged that the Patriots tampered with the footballs used during the first half of that year’s AFC Championship Game against the Indianapolis Colts. The report said that several members of the Patriot’s equipment staff slightly deflated the footballs under the PSI levels required by the NFL, and that quarterback Tom Brady and head coach Bill Belichick were among those involved. Before I continue, these alleged events took place in the first half of a game that was a 45-7 win for New England, with the Pats scoring 38 of their points in the second half. Punishments were expected for the team, but the initial report was shut down for lack of evidence. Months later, the “Wells Report” was released, proving that Brady “might” have had something to do with the scandal. That was enough for league commissioner Roger Goodell, who slapped Brady with a 4 game suspension for the 2016-17 season. For reference, that is the same amount of games Greg Hardy missed for beating his girlfriend to a pulp. Despite Brady denying any affiliation with the incident and pleading his innocence in court, the suspension was upheld.  Brady served his suspension, and the team went 3-1 in his absence. When he returned, the Patriots only lost one game the rest of the season en route to a 5th Super Bowl, where Goodell handed Patriots owner Robert Kraft the Lombardi Trophy and scurried off the podium, ending the Goodell vs. Brady Rivalry for the time being. However, the most recent commercial released by Shields MRI, a New England-based hospital, may change that.

 

This commercial features Brady adding the fifth ring to his collection of jewelry. The ring itself is a symbol of that fifth championship he and the Patriots won minutes before the commercial aired. It is actually a sequel to a commercial that aired when New England won Super Bowl 49, in which Brady added his fourth ring to the collection. This commercial is a celebration of his fifth championship and features Brady adding his fifth ring to his “jewelry” collection.

The characters themselves, Brady and the hospital worker, represent the Patriots and the hospital, respectively. However, there is more to it. Brady’s part in the commercial, particularly his final line “Roger that”, is a big middle finger to NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. There is not much emotion to it, just a big “Screw you, I win”. That is what the foremost function of the commercial is. Not only is it a celebration of New England’s fifth Super Bowl title, but it is also a slap in the face to the man who tried to stop them, Roger Goodell.

Since Shields MRI is a New England-based hospital, only New England Super Bowl viewers saw the commercial when it first aired. Their advertisers knew that if you are from New England and you were watching the Super Bowl that night, you understood the context of the commercial. And, since it is a sequel to their previous commercial that made its own waves and is well known, people were also able to identify with their brand.  That is such a key component in the success of the commercial. Their advertisers knew that almost every New England television would be set to Fox, the channel that aired the Super Bowl, so they took the opportunity not only to spread brand awareness, but to show support for their team and take a stab at the villain of the story, Roger Goodell to dramatically increase popularity.

Although one would think that perhaps Atlanta fans or non-New England fans would show disdain for the commercial, no articles were found showing such disdain. It seems as though viewers believe Brady was in the right for taking a shot at Goodell for suspending him. However, the rivalry between Brady and Goodell itself is already subject to much controversy, so this is adding fuel to the fire. Tensions were very high while the Deflategate case was still open, and with commercials like these still finding airtime, the rivalry doesn’t show any signs of holding up.

“This Is SportsCenter”

Alec Rudolph, Paul DiPasqua, Drew Pearson

The rivalry between the Boston Red Sox and the New York Yankees is one of the most heated rivalries in sports. Fans from both sides know that is is absolutely frowned upon to support the other side or represent them in any way, so when Red Sox legend David Ortiz actually puts on a piece of Yankees memorabilia, it’s kind of a big deal. In the commercial, Ortiz, Yankees legend Jorge Posada, and SportsCenter anchor Stan Verret are discussing a new Yankees hat. Ortiz offers to try the hat on and break it in. Red Sox mascot Wally sees Ortiz wearing the Yankees hat, and he acts accordingly, dropping the large stack of papers he was carrying, and although lacking the capability to show any facial expression, somehow manages to show his utter disbelief and disgust towards the Red Sox slugger.

This commercial, one of many in the “This is SportsCenter” series, is a genius piece of media. It only aired on ESPN channels, so its target audience was obviously sports fans. But the commercial gets more specific than that. There are several symbols embedded in the commercial that allow the viewer to identify with what is happening. The major symbol is the Yankees hat. The hat symbolizes the rivalry between the Yankees and the Red Sox, something many sports fans can identify with. Or, if they do not know about the rivalry, they are now intrigued by it and will look further into it, hopefully on ESPN, since it is the channel the commercial is airing on. This is known as semiotics, or the use of objects to express meaning.

Another way for the viewer to understand the commercial this through another framework called psychoanalysis, which involves understanding human behavior. This is where the characters in the commercial come in. Ortiz and Posada obviously represent the Red Sox and the Yankees, the two sides of the rivalry. Fans can choose to identify with either side. Wally represents the feeling of animosity between the teams because of the feeling of betrayal he shows towards Ortiz. Fans of either team can identify this this feeling, and for non-fans, they now understand the seriousness of the rivalry. Finally, Stan Verret represents SportsCenter and ESPN. He shows that not only does SportsCenter and ESPN understand the rivalry, they promote it. Those who are familiar with the rivalry already know that, so it just furthers their incentive to watch games on ESPN. For those who are not familiar, it shows that the rivalry is something worth watching, and that since SportsCenter is evidently in touch with the world of sports and can present a humorous take on it, that ESPN’s flagship show is also worth watching.

The whole commercial is about reinforcing the status quo that the Red Sox and the Yankees hate each other, and that SportsCenter promotes the rivalry. Another framework for analyzing media is political economy, which is just that: the media reinforcing the status quo. ESPN is reinforcing the fact that the two teams hate each other’s guts. The viewer sees that ESPN understands the rivalry, so they will watch ESPN for coverage on the rivalry. And this commercial in particular has held its own weight in the commercial series, with Time Magazine ranking it in the Top 12 “This is SportsCenter” commercials ever. Moreover, the commercial is able to blend the sports world with pop culture trends through its wittiness and exposure of top athletes, so that even those who are not entirely familiar with the world of sports can identify with the commercial.

With a show like SportsCenter, which has become a kind of pop culture leviathan that frequently influences the sports world it covers an advertisement like this one is almost guaranteed to have an impact.  The Red Sox and Yankees hate each other, and the best place to go to learn more about the rivalry or to simply watch a game is SportsCenter and ESPN.

Twitter

by Alec Rudolph and Paul DiPasqua

Twitter is quite a unique social media platform; Not only are users able to share photos and videos, but they can also casually chat with people from all over the world. However, Twitter was not always the mega-platform for expressing views and opinions that it is today.

The social micro-blogging service is a product of Jack Dorsey’s interest in mass transportation and experiments with keeping couriers, bus drivers, cab drivers, etc. in touch with each other in real-time. After noticing that taxi drivers were constantly updating their statuses while he was working on messaging systems for cab companies, Dorsey began planning to create a “web site that combined dispatch software and instant messaging“. The site was not met with as much acclaim as you would expect, and it was initially written off as a site meant strictly for prominent figures and those obsessed with chronicling every moment of their lives. However, Twitter began to grow on Americans and after Dorsey set up a demonstration of Twitter at the 2007 South by Southwest Interactive conference, the number of tweets per day tripled from 20,000 to 60,000 because “hundreds of conference-goers kept tabs on each other via constant twitters. Panelists and speakers mentioned the service, and the bloggers in attendance touted it,” according to Newsweek.

Due to presidential candidates Barack Obama and John McCain using the site extensively in the 2008 election, Twitter became fully accepted by the American people. But the next year, 7239 miles away in Iran, another presidential election proved that Twitter was here to stay. In response to claims that the incumbent, Mahmoud Ahmedinajad, had acquired massive amounts of fraudulent votes, Iranian officials tried to shut down all media in the country. Twitter, however, would not be stopped by this blackout and allowed Iranian users to tell the world what was really happening — with live updates. This apparently caught the attention of a U.S. State Department official, who e-mailed Dorsey because Twitter was “playing an important role at a crucial time in Iran,” and proceeded to request that Dorsey not perform scheduled site maintenance in order for protesters to keep tweeting. The site’s frequent compliance with these requests has led to it being noted as one of the most crucial communication tools in other protests, from the Arab Spring to the Occupy movement in New York and other cities.

As of 2013, Twitter’s 105,000,000 users sent out a collective 55,000,000 tweets per day. By now, these numbers have surely skyrocketed and although he has already revolutionized communication, Dorsey plans to bring about “a better and more immediate experience around the everyday things we do in life.”

As Twitter began to dig itself deeper into society, it naturally began to have certain effects on its users. For one, since tweets are limited to 140 characters, users can’t type in tangents and long paragraphs. Everything has to be short and concise. College professors report that students’ writing has changed to be a fog of brief snippets of first-person blog-speak and a file photo hurriedly culled from somewhere.  However, this style of writing is very effective in certain fields. The news is meant to be reported as quickly and concisely as possible, while still providing an adequate amount of information. So, Twitter’s new format has had a huge influence on the way people wrote, particularly in the field of news reporting. This is why countless news outlets have turned to Twitter. The app’s format allows for quick and concise reporting, and it is seen by millions in a matter of seconds.

However, sometimes quick and concise is not sufficient. Often times, stories are too complicated to be squeezed into a tweet or link, and they can easily be distorted by ignorant eyes. As Matthew Arnold describes it, the reader suffers both from the effects of not enough information, and too much extraneous information.

There are more major effects of Twitter, such as affected relationships. James Vincent of Independent writes that countless relationships have been negatively affected by the use of social media, particularly Twitter. A simple concept, the analysis of a study done by Russell Clayton shows that users who use the app more report conflicts with their partners  over the app. This is not a surprising concept, but those conflicts often result in broken relationships and emotional stress. This stress also tends to lead to more use of social media, so the app coincidentally benefits from the stress of its users. So, moderation is highly suggested with the app.

Of all the age groups that use Twitter, the teenager is perhaps the largest. The app plays a big part in the maturing of young adults, and while it was mentioned earlier that twitter could have positive effects on a person’s writing, negative effects certainly outweigh the positive. Michael Burton, in an article on Ragan.com, wrote that “there are growing signs that excessive use of direct messaging, especially Twitter, leads to an erosion of the English language…teachers are noticing more punctuation errors, spelling mistakes, and inconsistent capitalization usually found only in text messages and Twitter posts. More students are failing English exams due to a lack of basic grammar skills.” Kids are far to easily influenced to be on an app such as Twitter for too long, or else this could easily happen. So while Twitter does make for a useful news outlet, it also is the cause of broken relationships and poor grammar in teens and young adults.

Twitter is a unique social media site in that it has many functions. Unlike Instagram or Snapchat, users can post and view basically anything they want and talk to anyone they want in seconds. There is nothing like a tweet. It is a form of communication bundled together into 140 characters that can be a simple statement, a picture, a video, or a GIF. With that being said, the app applies to more than just the first and obvious sense, sight. We read and see everything on Twitter, like in real life. We can also hear videos being played, adding another human aspect to the app. Twitter provides all the means necessary to be able to see and listen to anything we want. Since this is the case, twitter’s multiple “mediums” of communication and observation consequently affect us in multiple ways.

Most notably, our social order itself has been greatly affected by Twitter. The social life of every person who has used the app has been affected. We see and hear things on the app that we otherwise wouldn’t likely see. We interact with people we otherwise wouldn’t react. We are more in touch with each other, and this has affected our society drastically, but not just among users. As we evolve more and more into a media based society, applications like Twitter only speed up the process from paper to digital. However, this could lead to a separated society down the road. Less face-to-face interaction can lead to an unorganized society that has failed to keep entirely in-touch over the years. I believe that as we use social media and electronic devices more and more, we as a society will lose touch with each other and become stagnant and boring. This seems likely considering the effects of Twitter on young users that were mentioned earlier. Only time will tell how much of an impact apps like Twitter will truly have, because the generation that grew up with Twitter will soon take over.

Hope is Not Lost

By Alec Rudolph

On Friday, January 20th 2017, our country changed forever. Donald Trump was sworn into office on Pennsylvania Ave in Washington D.C., officially making him the 45th president of the United States. But the new president is the furthest thing from everyone’s minds. Mr. Trump’s special day was overshadowed by the reportedly record low Inauguration Day crowds, the women’s march on the White House, and both violent and non-violent protests alike.

On a day that was supposed to celebrate Donald Trump’s victory in the election, it will instead be remembered as a day of mourning his victory. We all foresaw this. Mr. Trump is already one of the least popular presidents ever, and certainly the least popular of the 21st Century. However, in being the least popular president, he has brought our country closer together than ever.

People may not have shown up for his inauguration, but people did show up for things that matter: speaking out against racism, sexism, and bigotry. Whether you support Trump or not, it is impossible to deny the fact that our people want what is best for our country. Mr. Trump’s first hours in office will forever be known as a time of unity. Because of Mr. Trump’s inauguration, people care.

This is not a time for panic, this is a time for unity. Trump supporter or not, he is our president, and we have united around his inauguration. Perhaps he is the leader we need.