Final Reflection of UOSM2008

Before the start of this module, although I see myself more of a digital resident than visitor (as discussed in topic 1), I use Internet mainly for personal purposes and sometimes I would use it for my studying as well. However, I rarely shared my opinions and thoughts on the Internet and  I don’t really create anything online either. Throughout the development of this module, not only have I learnt more about the online world through my own research and discussion with colleagues, I have also started to develop my own digital profile! Although it is still very basic and require further development in the future, I believe it will be very beneficial for me, in both professional and personal perspectives.

Being a third year student means that I will be graduating in a couple of months time and will be looking for jobs.  It is really important to enhance my employability and as discussed throughout the whole module, I have realise how important to develop my own digital profile and how social medias can potentially increasing my employability.

I think the most rewarding thing from this module would definitely be this blog. As English is my second language, expressing my thoughts in English would sometimes be quite challenging, therefore, I would have never imagined myself to actually be having my own blog and publishing new post every week. In addition, as I would love to be in the hand-making craft/cards industry, a blog would be a great place for me to share my ideas and showcasing my creation freely. Therefore, I have actually posted other blog posts (see links), which I have shared the cards that I have made, including a short YouTube video (which again I would never have imagine myself doing so before).  From now on, I will be posting on this blog regularly, to ensure I can capture my potential audience interests.   Below is a short video that I filmed recently, which I have now uploaded it onto my youtube channel and my recent blog post.



twitterI have also linked all my social media and LinkedIn profile with my blog, so that if anyone is interested in my work, they can contact me easily. Some of these social medias (such as Facebook), I used them merely for personal social purposes previously. And although I  got a Twitter account two years ago, I seldom use it. During the progress of this module, I have started to use it more often, to share resources or articles that I have found interesting about this module with my colleagues. Most importantly, notifying others about my new uploads to promote my work.  Right after the discussion about online identity, I have changed my social media privacy setting, so that they are more secure and to minimise the risk of my information being misused. I have also went thorough the content of my social media, to see if there’s any inappropriate uploads, if so, take them off as soon as possible because those things could easily damage my reputations (lucky I didn’t find any!). Despite the risks with linking both personal and professional online identities together. These social media platforms are a great place where I can develop my digital profile in the hand-made field. As I can share my works on there with others, so that people will start noticing my work and there might be opportunity where I could receive job offers for interested company. Thus, I will make sure I am being extra conscious and aware of what I am putting out there on the Internet.

LinkedInOther than these different social medias, creating a LinkedIn profile is also a must when trying to search for jobs. Before the start of week 3’s discussion, I thought the only way to apply for jobs or being noticeable by your interested company would be handing your CV in. However, after that week of discussion, I have soon realised how powerful digital profiles are when it comes to job application. Therefore, my own LinkedIn account has now been created and I will be updating it regularly in the future.

As a psychology student, I found this module very unique and it is so different from all the other courses that I have done in the past. It has actually changes my perspectives in some level about the online world as well. This module relies heavily on independent learning as well as collaboration with other students, to develop our own understanding, which led to some interesting discussions.  Overall, I have genuinely enjoyed taking part in this course.


Links to other blog posts:

https://cherriesun1.wordpress.com/2015/05/12/handmade-cards/

https://cherriesun1.wordpress.com/2015/05/13/handmade-card-with-watercolour-background/

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Handmade Card with Watercolour Background

Hi everyone, today I would like to share my process of making a card using the Hero Art stencil to create a watercolour background.  
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I have added a piece of vellum in between the colourful background and the piece of white card stock, so that the sentiment on that piece of card stock would stand out even more.  
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Here is a close up of the sentiment.  I really like this Reverse Confetti stamp set (Shine From Within), as the sentiments are really inspirational and would make great encouragement cards or even little bookmark / tags as handmade gifts for someone.
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Here is a short video showcasing my process of making this card, enjoy 🙂


Thank you for your reading:)  hope you have enjoyed my process of making this card. I will see you again next week! 🙂

Handmade Cards

Hi everyone! I have been into card making even since I came to England five years ago and I have always wanted to start my very own blog and to share my creativity with everyone! Now I have finally decided to do so. I will be posting on this blog every week. Hope everyone enjoyed my cards. Thank you:)

Today I would like to share cards that I have made recently with you all.


I have used the hero art stencil to create my watercolour background. 
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and I have cut a piece into a tag shape to separate the colourful background with the navy tag.
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I have used the hero art background stamp to stamp on a piece of watercoloring paper, then I heat embossed it so that it became watercolour resisted. 
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added some gemstones onto the card to give it some extra sparkles.
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a simply birthday card using the Stamin’ Up Elements of Style stamp set.
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this is my first time trying out the pearlescent watercolour set and I am really please with the result. It has got a settle shimmer to it and looks absolutely amazing under the light.
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I have added a few drops of the turquoise shimmer mist onto my card to give it extra sparkles.
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using the same stencil as the first card, to create a similar background.
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it is a bit tricky with trying to attach vellum onto a card.  This time I have added my glue behind all the embossed words so that people would be able to see the adhesive.  enamel dots were used not only to add some more colour to the cards, but also to help holding the vellum in place.
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a simply yet colourful thank you card.  
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this was a card that I made for my mum for mother’s day (in Hong Kong, mother’s day is in May).  And she said she really liked it:)
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I have die cut out the HAPPY BIRTHDAY using lawn fawn finley’s ABCs alphabet dies set.  
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For the word BIRTHDAY, I have actually used the letters that I have cut out from the last card and simply used them on another card.  And the ombre green turns out to be pretty cool.
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Another watercolour piece using the distress ink pad.  I like putting drops of water on it after it has completely dry as these inks are water-resisted, therefore they would give out a really cool effect.  
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using embossing stamp images/sentiments before doing the water colouring can give a really clear look as the embossed image will be resisting any colour that go on top of it, so that it will stay nice and clear.
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I have put a few layers of watercolour on this card and i have waited each layer to be completely dry before adding the next layer on top, so that the colour came out really vibrant.
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I have taken some leftover watercolour piece that is too small to be used on a card, and cut them into a tag shape, so that they could be used as a gift tag.  
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Thank you for reading this blog post, and I hope you have enjoyed my handmade cards.  See you next week!

Topic 5: Reflective Summary

Another interesting week of discussion! After reading and commenting on others’ blog post, I now think I would be able to answer my initial question for this topic: Open access, YES or NO?

As a content user, that’s a definite YES for sure. And for a content producer or creator, I think that would be a YES too! Although there are costs for making their materials freely with users, benefits of sharing would be greater than costs.

In my blog post, I have been mainly focusing on the impact on content producer in the academic field, but Nicole’s post reminded me that there are much more content producers out there in the world, producing materials which are unrelated to education (e.g. music, video etc.). In this sense, I could say I am a content producer as well, as I’m sharing my thoughts and ideas on my blog and I don’t think I would even want to charge people to read my blog as this is a place where I can share my opinions and thoughts freely with others. I would like my blog to be as accessible as possible to others. Tatiana’s blog used a really eye catching title, which got me to agree even more to the availability of free access to online content. As the use of Internet is growing rapidly, most people are using Internet not only for entertainment; they also used it as a medium to share, collaborate and ideas with others.

Although I do agree with making the materials freely available for users, it would be unfair for the users, as they have put so much resources and efforts into creating something, making everything freely available for people, but they don’t get anything in return. One way to get a balance between this can be using an alternative ‘payment’ as return for the producer. Nicole’s post again made a fantastic suggestion: providing the producer with the user’s information or data about their preferences. These data could be more useful for the producer than money for marketing purpose. Enabling a better balance between both parties, everyone could enjoy the beauty of living in an online world.


Comment links:

https://nicoleodofin.wordpress.com/2015/05/01/should-online-content-be-free-or-should-we-pay-a-fee/comment-page-1/#comment-28

https://tatianasieff.wordpress.com/2015/05/01/imagine-if-this-blog-cost-you-10-to-read/comment-page-1/#comment-36

TOPIC 5: Open Access, YES or NO?

10tiwBusinessOpenAccessStephenMorrisiStockphoto-1376579425814As a psychology student, there are always time when I have to search for articles online to support my study and essays writing. Often, when I found something that seems to be relevant and useful, access for that article was denied, unless I purchase it. Sometimes it’s really frustrating when you are struggling to gain access to them and it would be a lot easier if every articles are available online for free! However, as a content producer, do they see things the same way as content-user would?

Open access is where people can have free availability of the final publisher version of articles, with full re-use rights. Below is a short video showing the concept and process of open access.



To think from the content producers’ perspectives, both pros and cons of making their materials free available online should be taken into account.

Advantages

  • Increase the readership
    Researchers invested a lot of time and effort into composing a paper and it is simple to understand that they wanted to show people what they have done. To provide free open access to their work increases the likelihood and opportunities for people to read and know about their work.
  • Sharing of knowledge
    With the open access licences, authors can share their works with others, so that ideas can be moved on which will enable further continuous research, while still retaining full copyrights of their work. This could also lead to increase number of citations. Sharing your findings and researches could be a huge contribution to professional fields.
  • Provide help for developing countries
    Students or even researchers in the low-income countries might struggle to purchase and gain access to those highly priced publications. Having free access to these resources can aid the educational development in these countries. Cross-cultural researches could also be carried out easier as they have gained more knowledge and be able to learn more about particular research.

Disadvantages

  • Publication fees
    When it is free for the reader, authors are then responsible to pay for the publication and this could mean that part of their funding or even their own money would go to publication. Having to pay for the cost of publication, this might discourage authors to provide open access to others.
  • Quantity over quality
    When there is pressure on authors to cover the cost of publication, they are encouraged to publish more articles and the quality of those articles might be relatively poor and thus, there is a problem with editorial independence.


As a user of these resources, I do enjoy having free access to online resources. However, as content producers, there are much more considerations to be taken into account and hopefully, after the discussion with other colleagues on this topic, I can seek for a answer for my question – Open Access, Yes or No?



References:

Understanding Open Access – YouTube [Online] Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o2HMouOV-Lg [Accessed: 30th April 2015].

Geib, A. (2013) Advantages and Disadvantages of Open Access. [Online] Available at: http://www.edanzediting.com/blog/advantages_and_disadvantages_open_access#.VULOtc6sbdm [Accessed: 1st May 2015]

Mizera, K. (2013) Open Access increases citations – yes or no? [Online] Available at: http://openscience.com/open-access-increases-citations-yes-or-no/ [1st May 2015]

Hunter, K. Open Access: yes, no, maybe. [Online] Available at: http://www.nature.com/nature/focus/accessdebate/3.html [Accessed: 1st May 2015]

Images:

Available at: http://theinstitute.ieee.org/briefings/business/options-for-openaccess-publishing [Accessed: 1st May 2015]


Topic 4: Reflective Summary

Lots of different ethical issues have been arisen during these few weeks and I have enjoyed reading these interesting blog posts. After commenting on colleagues’ work and receiving comments from others, I have gained different perspectives on the question I raised from the beginning of my post – should we  look at ones’ professional work and private life together or separately?

Thanks to Zia’s comment, I have learnt that there are actually ways to separate ones’ personal and professional online identities, it just that not many people are doing so in an effective way. And his blog post on educational use of social media is quite interesting, as I have been so focused on the negative issues, which I have ignored the potential positives that can occur. And thanks to Tatiana’s comment, I have now discovered more issues with companies using social media as platforms for their advertisement, which supported my views on damaging companies’ reputations by publishing inappropriate advertisements. Although I have mentioned in my topic 4 blog post, that one inappropriate comment can have great cost and could mess ones’ life up, May’s blog post took this to another level and raised the question – who is actually responsible to the comments. This really got me thinking, and my answer is both parties, both commenters and website administrators.

In conclusion, I still think there are needs to separate the two aspects (professional work and personal life) on the Internet. However, as I originally thought there is no way one can separate these two aspects online, I now believed that there are actually ways to do so. Though, not many people manage to do it effectively or even acknowledge the possibilities of doing so. Moreover, I think other than the issue that I have raised in my blog post, there are so much more ethical issues occur when using social media for educational and business purposes, therefore, everyone should be more conscious about what we are doing online.


Comment links:

https://ziaahmed2014.wordpress.com/2015/03/22/topic-4-ethical-issues-raised-by-social-media-in-education/comment-page-1/#comment-22

https://maybulmanontheweb.wordpress.com/2015/03/22/discuss-one-of-the-ethical-issues-raised-by-educational-or-business-use-of-social-media-that-you-consider-to-be-particularly-significant/comment-page-1/#comment-24

TOPIC 4: Private life, Professional work and Social media

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The most significant ethical issue that I found with social media for business and educational use would definitely be the Blurriness between personal and work life online. Although a lot of people tried to separate these two aspects, there seems to be no way to do so!

The question is – should we determine ones’ professional work by taking their private life into account? Should we look at these two aspects together or separately?

To tackle these questions, different perspectives should be considered.


Reputation of the company

Company’s reputation can be negatively influenced by employees’ opinions expressed on behalf of it. If an employee uses social media in an irresponsible way, for example, posting an inappropriate tweet using the official twitter account of the company. With the large amount of followers, the message will spread widely in no time. And if those comments are unacceptable or even offensive, company might faces harsh criticisms. Comments or posts that were seen as unacceptable can either be affected by the content and timing of the post, or even the inappropriate theme of their promotional offers. Take American Apparel and KitchenAid as examples, they both published inappropriate posts in 2012 and were criticised by people. These criticisms damaged their reputation and potentially established a negative image of the company. Not only posts that were published on behalf o the company, employees’ comments and thoughts that were made against it using their personal accounts on different platforms can impact the reputation too. This shows the powerfulness of social media as one tweet can destroy the reputations that might have taken lots of time and effort to build.

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Inappropriate promotional message by American Apparel.
Even though the offensive tweet to President Barack Obama was posted using the company's official account accidentally, KitchenAid still face criticism.
Even though the offensive tweet to President Barack Obama was posted using the company’s official account accidentally, KitchenAid still face criticism.

Reputation in the educational sector

Just like in the business sector, people who are involved in the educational sector also faced the same issue – the challenges of maintaining a professional image and profile in their private life. There seems to be no separation between ones’ private and professional identities online. Ashley Payne were asked to resign from her job as a high school teacher because she posted a photo on a private Facebook account of herself drinking alcohol while visiting a local pub in Dublin when travelling. Although it is just a normal pictures which most people would take on a vacation, because of her job and her professional identity, that was seen as unacceptable and she faced serious consequences.


Personal use

Does the above augments violate the freedom to express ones’ thoughts and opinions online and their privacy? Employees weren’t able to express their true feelings online because it seems like companies are spying on every single one of them, monitoring their online social engagement. Not only comments that were made which go against their employers, post that are offensive or racist can cause serious damage on one’s professional life as well. Justine Sacco, who was a PR at IAC made a racist post on twitter and got fired because the tweet has gone wild and IAC were forced to fire her in order to minimise the damage that were made on their integrity.

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Racist tweet that Justine Sacco made.

So, is there any ways to overcome these issues?

To minimise the potential consequences, guidance or polices should be established by the companies or educational organisations, to ensure that every employees and people involved understand their rights and obligations. It is important that both employers and employees are fully engage and make sure everyone understand the consequences and boundaries when engaging in online social activities, in order to achieve a balance between having a normal social life online without affecting ones’ professional work in a negative way.



References:

Akitunde, A. (2013) Employees Gone Wild: 8 Reasons You Need A Social Media. [Online] Available at: https://www.americanexpress.com/us/small-business/openforum/articles/employee-social-media-policy/ [Accessed: 20th March 2015]

Business Ethics Briefing. (2011) The Ethical Challenges of Social Media. [Online] Available at: http://www.ibe.org.uk/userassets/briefings/ibe_briefing_22_the_ethical_challenges_of_social_media.pdf [Accessed: 20th March 2015]

Online Newsletter. (2014) Social Media In Education: Ethical Concerns. [Online] Available at: https://newsletter.alt.ac.uk/2014/07/social-media-in-education-ethical-concerns/ [Accessed: 20th March 2015]

Images:

Available at: http://www.someecards.com/usercards/viewcard/2ebfcc578f83a8d0ed5ee4c26005c319 [Accessed: 21stMarch 2015]

Available at: http://mashable.com/2012/10/03/kitchen-aid-obama-dead-grandma/ [Accessed: 21stMarch 2015]

Available at: http://mashable.com/2012/10/30/american-apparel-sandy/ [Accessed: 21stMarch 2015]

Available at: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2955322/Justine-Sacco-reveals-destroyed-life-racist-tweet-trip-Africa.html [Accessed: 21stMarch 2015]

Topic 3: Reflective Summary

As a final year student at the university, knowing how to improve my employability is really important to me since I have to get a job soon after I graduated. Before looking into topic 3, I was one of the people who only believes in heading in CV and doing well in an interview. However, after writing this week blog post, I have changed my initial thoughts. I think the most important thing that I have learnt from this week discussion is the power of a professional online profile, in terms of promoting oneself, and how this can leads to a potential job opportunity. Also, as discussed in topic 2, the importance of effective online profile management.

This week discussion with others is actually quite interesting since everyone seems to be focusing on different ways of building an online profile. However, if we put all of these ideas together, we will get a better picture of how these different ways or platforms can work nicely together, in order to establish a complete professional online profile that reflects the true self. In Nicole’s blog post, she has emphasized the use of blogging, as a platform to develop our online professional profile. I do agree with her suggestion, however, I think there are needs for using the other platforms too. In Sarah’s blog post, she mentioned the importance of having a good and trustworthy professional profile on social media as it is becoming more important. To extend the discussion, I have raised a question about ‘how’ to use our profile in an effective way.

Although it is impossible for me to look at all the ways of creating an authentic online profile in details, having the opportunity to read others’ blog post provide a chance to look at all these platform individually, and to gain a better insight about different media. For example, Zia’s blog post focused on the use of LinkedIn and displayed a clear procedure for developing a good profile on LinkedIn whereas Nicole’s blog post mainly focused on the effects of blogging.

After wring my own and reading the others’ blog post for topic 3, I still think there are needs to use a combination of different platforms because they all benefit us in different ways. If we take the advantages of all these methods, and use them wisely, we will be able to promote ourselves effectively. In the near future, I would definitely be setting up a LinkedIn account, following and connecting with recruiters in Hong Kong (where I would prefer to work after graduating) and continue writing my blog.


Comment links:

https://nicoleodofin.wordpress.com/2015/03/07/topic-3-authentic-online-professional-profile/comment-page-1/#comment-10

https://sarahkyle27.wordpress.com/2015/03/07/topic-3-discuss-the-ways-in-which-an-authentic-online-professional-profile-can-be-developed/comment-page-1/#comment-14

TOPIC 3: Building A Professional Online Profile

Imagine if you were an employer and you are looking for the perfect employee out of hundreds and thousands of candidates, with only a few pages of CV, or maybe a 15 minutes interview for each of them, how well can you get to know them and make sure you have chosen the right one for that job? I think it is impossible!

As social media is becoming more and more popular in this generation, majority of us might already have an online profile built in many ways. Our online profiles present who we are and what we want to be known for. It is essential to manage our own personal brand effectively, to present the best side of us.   Having a good personal brand not only improves our employability, but also reputation and publicity.

WHY DO WE NEED A GOOD PROFESSIONAL ONLINE PROFILE?

93% of recruiters use or plan to use social media to support their recruiting efforts! (Jobvite social recruiting survey, August 2014) The survey demonstrated the importance of having a good professional online profile and the needs for establishing one if you haven’t done so. Companies, such as BeMyBest would even offer the service of managing your online presence for you.  Here is a short advert by BeMyBest – a fun cartoon demonstrating the needs for establishing a professional online profile.


SO, HOW TO DEVELOP A GOOD PROFESSIONAL PROFILE?

IMG_1980Firstly, the most important point is that you cannot lie about yourself online, in another words, your online profile has to be authentic. It will be really hard to maintain if the information that you used to represent yourself is not true with modern networking society, people will find out! Highlight the personas or characteristics that are best describe you or best related to your desire professional field, to show others the best of you.

Second of all, we should separate our profession and private life online. One way to do so is to use different platforms for these two purposes. For professional work, a profile on LinkedIn should be set up. This is a place where you can publish our digital CV, interests and skills or even your previous works. On the other hand, Facebook or Twitter can be use for your private social life. Although it is difficult to separate these two in reality, having different information about oneself display on different media and platform minimise the risk of showing potential employers ‘too much information’.

Thirdly, other than qualification and references, creativity and your ability to express yourself can be a major consideration for employers too. To show your ability of critical thinking and collaborating with others, participate in discussion broad in LinkedIn is a good way to go. Another way to do so is to blog. By posting your own thoughts and views on certain topics, replying and answering readers’ comments, it demonstrates your ability of organising your thoughts and to work with others. It also shows your passion and enthusiasm about what you are doing. Kristina is a blogger that I have been following for a few years, she shares her paper craft projects on her blogs and she is now a designer for a popular paper crafting company in the US. By sharing her creativity on her blog with others, she demonstrated the skills she has got and it is a good platform to promote herself.

Last but not least, the connection. Simply putting out information about oneself is insufficient. We have to make sure people can reach you and acknowledge about your existence. By interacting with people within that professional field, not only will you have the opportunity to be working with them in the future, but also keep yourself up to date about the trends and insights in that area.

With the combination of promoting yourself on different platforms, it creates an authentic 3-demensional image of a person and compare with the traditional way of handing in CV and having interviews, this is a better way to get a full picture of someone and it is easier for employers to filter potential candidates after they have learnt more about them.


Reference:

Neil’s Recruitment Co. (2014) Curating Your Online Profile. [Online] Available at: http://www.neilsrecruitment.co.uk/2014/01/curating-your-online-profile/ [Accessed: 6th March 2015]

For Dummies. How to Create Effective and Professional Online Profiles. [Online] Available at: http://www.dummies.com/how-to/content/how-to-create-effective-and-professional-online-pr.html [Accessed: 6th March 2015]

BBC News Business. (2013) Using social media to find a new job. [Online] Available at: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-24994573 [Accessed: 6th March 2015]

Graham, D. (2013) Your 2013 LinkedIn Checklist to Enhance Your Personal Brand. [Online] Available at: https://dngraham.wordpress.com/2013/01/04/your-2013-linkedin-checklist-to-enhance-your-personal-brand/?goback=%2Egde_3269015_member_201251655 [Accessed: 7th March 2015]

TheEmployable. (2014) How Blogging Can Help You Get A Job. [Online] Available at: http://www.theemployable.com/index.php/2014/10/28/blogging-can-help-get-job/ [Accessed: 7th March 2015]