Intensive Production – Semester 2 | Welcome Back

It is a massive relief when I submitted my production piece last semester!! This is now the last half of the journey, marking another semester in which to be creatively critical and explore contemporary issues!

Week 1:

Thoughts about last semester…

  • There were some stages of the production, where I felt a little uneasy or stuck, although this is a natural occurrence within the field of critical practice, for instance, at the early stages of production, I was unsure as to how this piece would develop, however, as I got over that, the project flowed smoothly and with more control.


  • I had faced some difficulties throughout last semester’s production and this is indicative of the feedback that I have received. From this, I have decided to pay more attention to researching into presenting and wrapping up my project. Although I will mention this to my lecturer’s and technical instructors as to gain the best out of my tuition.


  • Hopefully, I can sustain my levels of motivation, attention to detail and organizational skills into this semester also, as I often struggle to keep a weekly blog, in and around my other modules. Although, as always this is a crucial part of my submissions and growth as a student because it provides me with the space to explore, develop and research my project, ideas and investigations.


  • Overall, I feel that the project worked well, I was able to focus on a familiar yet interesting. I was able to build upon and push the boundaries further by experimenting and incorporating both new and unfamiliar mediums such as video and audio production which has improved and developed my skill set as a practitioner.


  • In addition, towards the end of my production, I struggled with knowing how to situate and present my piece, this was partly due to a severe lack of confidence and a lack of fully developed and broad knowledge of different presentation techniques. For the most part of this degree, there has been little academic focus on techniques or methods for physically presenting and critically situating production pieces.


  • My production in semester 1, gave me the opportunity to explore issues I was interested in, whilst also being able to experiment and develop practice-based techniques and areas that I wish to explore after leaving university. For instance, I am interested in building a career in commercial style photography and studio shoots (most of which I haven’t really been able to do until now!) Consequently, I am situating my research and practice around topics that involve commerce, retail and consumption, often shooting in a studio to familiarise myself with different lighting and commercial techniques that I can hopefully take into the future!


  • The feedback I have received is fair and indicative of my level of work and commitment throughout my production! I was a little shocked at the mark for the evaluation as I frequently struggle to get my thought-processes down on paper in a coherent and understandable way… Although, I am really happy because this has put me in a good position for the second semester!


  • This project also provided me with an opportunity to critically explore a production and investigation into an everyday practice that I have been interested in for a while. It is a project I have wanted to fulfil for a long time, and I was able to use this project as a means of exploring this topic.

Potential Project Ideas…

  • Follow up/Development of Work Practice critical investigation whilst also developing further the previous semester’s  project…
  • I intend to explore contemporary and current consumption patterns that are publically shared online through social media use and photo platforms…
  • Explore the ways in which social media is used to display status and identity through consumption in relation to still life and symbolic representation
  • Examining how social media functions to display status and identity through consumption practice and social media use…
  • Looking at various different brands, labels and corporations and hashtags to examine this…
  • Creating modern day still lives, both historic and contemporary consumption and artistic practices…
  • How does the mundane social media posts (Instagram) post act as a symbolic display of possessions and status… [Social Media + Narcissim]
  • Are we creating contemporary and digitalised still-life images through our social media posts and do these act as a new means to express individual identity through consumption?
  • Majority of all these posts are carefully constructed and meticulously staged to include particular photographic or symbolic conventions…
  • Are social media posts act as a new display of consumption practice and  commodity possession rituals

Hashtag Analysis…#Universitylife #Audi #Volkswagen #Apple #Starbucks

Visual Examples | Instagram


My Instagram…


Exemplar Analysis…



Still-Life Compositions + Vanitas Paintings…

Wikipedia Definition: “Still life photography is a genre of photography used for the depiction of inanimate subject matter, typically a small group of objects. it is the application of photography to the still life artistic style.” (Wikipedia, 2018)

“Still Life Photography: Definition, Techniques & Examples”

Social Media Shooters. | “If you’re a user of the popular app Instagram, you have probably seen countless pictures of people’s meals, which is an example of still life photography. The perfect combination of light and your latte? Also a still life.

When you’ve decided you want to take a still life photograph, you should then decide which type of still life photograph you would like to create.”

Historic Representations of Still Life…

Contemporary Recreations of Still-Life…

Style Cupid (2017)

Richard Kuiper – Dutch Still Life in Plastic

Within this series, (‘Still Life in Plastic’) Richard Kuiper makes critical commentary around environmental issues and the implications of consumption within popular culture. Kuiper states that… “Plastic is the environmental problem of the future, and it threatens both humans and animals alike. Nowadays absolutely everything is fashioned from plastic because it is a durable, convenient and highly useful material. As if that was not bad enough, we are witnessing the rise of plastic for purely decorative purposes. You name it and you can find it in plastic? Indistinguishable from the real thing.” (Kuiper, 2018). From his concerns, he became inspired to produce a series of still-life portraits out of plastic, similar to that of Pieter Claesz and Adriaen Coorte. I find these images particularly interesting because these images demand your sustained attention, at first glance these images seem to mimic the appearance of 17th-century still-life paintings. However, upon prolonged and closer inspection it becomes apparent that each of Kuiper’s pieces has been carefully constructed, depicting highly detailed and intricate objects that have been arranged and composed completely from plastic, even the seemingly black table-cloth is a black bin bag and the fish is an inflatable toy! “Richard Kuiper sees the dichotomy in his work: on the one hand, he admires the material, the invention of the everlasting. On the other, however, his compositions serve as a warning, and he hopes to use his photos to show how we have gone overboard with our use of plastic.” (Richard Kuiper, 2018).


Week 2/3:

(Brief! Yet,) Revised Description of my Initial Project Plan…

So, for this semester my inspiration is coming from some critical analysis of my work placement at the National Trust HQ. For my work placement module last semester, I was instructed to find a placement and complete around 20 days work, keep a critical diary and submit additional corresponding work such as a Poster/Presentation (outlining my experiences/outcomes and intentions) and lastly, a research essay that entailed situating my experiences within existing critical theory. Consequently, I constructed a critical analysis of everyday consumption practices whilst analysing them in relation to the formation, maintenance and display of social identity through notions of taste and class. My argument within that essay broadly focused on how commodity possession and gift-giving rituals all act as ways in which to display and embody one’s individual behaviour or character.


I would now argue that possession rituals are changing (or at least techniques for displaying them are!) Within this piece, I am focusing my attention to more contemporary and current social issues and shifting my attention from mundane purchase behaviours. Now, I will be analysing this on the front end of social media sites. I will begin by looking into image processing websites/apps (Photography) and social networks. and examining forms of consumption through categorisation (e.g. Visually and textually analysing activity posted on Instagram, listing images taken from the #Audi and #Beats category whilst looking at any visual similarities or differences).  This will allow me to broadly examine how consumption practices are displayed online and how this acts as a digital extension of the human identity. I may also intend on, examining the consequences of such public displays online through research into targeted advertising and data harvesting. At this stage, I am considering such hand-crafted and constructed images and social media posts also act and have begun to embody a contemporary and modern-day still life image.

  • Consider Phototrails…
  • Representation of consumption digitally (Similar to that of (‘7 Days of Garbage’)
  • Montage, representation of identity and narcissism
  • Society of the Spectacle on social media (Inherently social element to still life images)

Linder Sterling  – Photomontage

Linder is recognized as a British Artist and Musician that playfully experiments with the medium of photomontage as a way of responding to many critical issues and discourses. She was recognized as a figurehead within punk and post-punk circles for her early photomontages. Linder often used photomontage in a way that playfully examines issues around the representation of gender and identity as a means of creative expression. I find it particularly interesting how many early montage artists were concerned with the visual and metaphorical layering of multiple images and textures and a way of re-creating a hybrid image. Photomontages are historically situated as a response to many political and mainstream issues. Photomontages are also largely concerned with the politics of representation and the acknowledgement of material processes that are necessary as part of creation. Many early photomontages are centred around displaying and acknowledging edges and compositional structure and framing as a discipline, I find it really interesting that within Linder’s work her use of montage is quite clear and knowing in the sense that they are not creating a means to falsify or deceive but rather to invite playful reimagination of dominant ideological and political issues.

Kennard Phillips – Photomontage

Kennard Phillips uses his photomontage as a way of responding and reacting to political issues. “The work is made as a critical tool that connects to international movements for social and political change. We don’t see the work as separate to social and political movements that are confronting established political and economic systems. We see it as part of those movements, the visual arm of protest.” Represents and recreates ideology from popular culture and employes techniques such as satire and juxtaposition. I am particularly inspired by Kennard Phillips’ montages because of their aesthetics, the converging layers appear seamless and nearly somewhat realistic.

John Stezaker – Photomontage

Stezaker is a British conceptual artist that draws upon the appropriation of media and ideologies whilst incorporating conventions such as surrealism, collage, and photomontage. He examines the tensions between photographic truth and memory in relation to modern culture. John Stezaker skillfully juxtaposes images that are simultaneously conflicting and complementary. These act to function as a composition that invites critical reflection on compositional practices and the politics of representation.

“…coupling male and female identity into unified characters, Stezaker points to a disjointed harmony, where the irreconciliation of difference both complements and detracts from the whole. In his correlated images, personalities (and our idealizations of them) become ancillary and empty, rendered abject through their magnified flaws and struggle for visual dominance.”  (Saachi Gallery, 2017)

Unlike Kennard Phillips, Stezaker makes a very conscious and direct point, in the way that directly addresses the materiality and photographic processes that are involved in the construction of these conflicting yet harmonious creations.

Henry Peach Robbinson – Photomontage

Henry Peach Robinson is recognized as a pictorialist photographer that mainly centres around commercial portraiture through the medium of photomontage. Robinson focuses on the material essence of a photography physically deconstructs digital negatives and re-assembled them together by manually super-imposing them over the top of existing images. I find Henry Peach Robinson’s work influential because he makes a very direct and conscious attempt to seamlessly integrated these as to recreate a new and interesting composition.

Sergio Albiac – ‘You Are Not in the News’

“Generative portrait series exploring relationships between self-worth and media exposure.”

Sergio Albiac is a multi-disciplinary artist the works in and around both digital and analogue media, his is most known for his experimental works around “the visual intersection between generative computer code and traditional media.” He states within his online bibliography that he writes “computer programs that transform reality to express ideas about identity, beauty, chance and human emotions.” Albiac’s work “revolves around the universes we create in our minds and the tensions that arise when confronted to our realities.” He is famous for his dynamic experimentation with painting, print and video installation, whilst stating that…

“I do not feel constrained to a single medium or style. I use either traditional or new media to express my artistic vision. I am guided by uncertainty, intuition and passion and I want to stimulate the viewer alternative answers to old questions or better, brand new doubts.”

I particularly like Albiac’s pieces because I am really interested in areas or projects that touch on identity, narcisism and montage. At this stage, I am largely concerned with adopting photomontage as a potential technique for presenting my investigation.

(Sergio Albiac, 2018)

Sean Hillen – Contemporary Photomontage

Sean Hillen is an artist that expermiments with ‘traditional scalpel-and-glue photomontage’ (Hillen, S. 2018). He has been working since the early 1980s, creating documentary style photographs that were made in Northern Ireland. These were often politically fueled pieces that often made commentaries on the Northern conflict during that time. Hillen describes how he was “…grew up in Newry, a small but sometimes busy busy town just on the northern side of the Irish Border” and experienced troubling times. (Hillen, S. 2018). In 1993, Hillen discussed his project ‘Irelantis’, stating that it was ‘partly in response to my desire to get away from the ‘war’, and make more overtly healing works…”. Many of his works incorporate a ‘Dadaist’ approach, experiementing with materiality of found objects such as magazines, postcards and personal photographs. Many of Hillen’s pieces are are multi-media, in addition to collage, he incorporates sculptural, video and performance pieces. I was inspired by Sean Hillen because of his use of montage as a means to create ‘dialectic and political satire’ and his innovative and original aesthetics that dramatically draw attention to the materiality and joins between two conflicting images.

Herbert Bayer – Photomontage

Herbert Bayers is both an artist and designer from Austria, his practice uses various media types to create dynamic, crisp yet minimalisic aesthetics. Bayer was influenced by various artists such as Paul Jlee and Làszló Moholy-Nagy. With many of his work including geometical aesthetics alongside his use of complementary visuals within his carefully worked photomontages. I was particularly interest in his use of photomontage and bizzare surrealist aesthetics, I am interested in constructing a somewhat surrealist montage that functions to crique both modernity and notions of the digital self.


Considering Montage as an art/photographic practice…

Due to artist research, I have been considering montage as a potential way of representing my research and project intentions.  Artists such as Sergio Albiac and John Stezaker have acted as inspiration and I have started to experiment with some different ideas…

Here I have just taken an image found on the internet (Ignore the fact that it is the breaking bad guy!) combined with some of the screenshots from Instagram that have been shown above. I have had the potential idea about, potentially creating a series of portraits but by incorporating posts from social media as to highlight my critique of contemporary consumption and identity.

Standard Montage W/ Overlayered Instagram Posts…

‘The Digital Self’…


Gregg Segal – ‘7-days-of-garbage-and-daily-bread’

This is a photographic project by Gregg Seal that depicts a set of portraits that “…reveal the food we ear and garbage we create while telling a story about our health and the health of our planet.”.  (KickStarter, 2018).  Segal claims to be a very environmentally aware photographer that has expressed a degree of concern around the future of the planet and the implications of consumption. He states that “Both what we consume and what we throw away to tell a story about our health and the health of the planet.” (KickStarter, 2018). Within Segal’s Kickstarter page [Raising money for his project] that…

“In 2014, I struck on an idea that makes consumption, excess and waste impossible to ignore: I asked family, friends, neighbors, and friends of neighbors to save their garbage for one week, then lay down and be photographed in it. By extension, those who look at these pictures may stop and think about how much garbage they produce every week – and a conversation is started. I wanted my 8 year-old son to be aware that we’re part of the problem, too, so we lay down in our garbage. Many of the people I’ve photographed are starting to make small changes in their consumption habits. They’re composting more and buying products made to last longer instead of cheap, disposable ones. They’re choosing products with less packaging, re-using plastic containers rather than tossing them, and buying water bottles made of glass or stainless steel.”

I find this project exceptionally interesting because it makes direct ties between my previous project and my current ideas around consumption and identities through visual representation. I am also particularly interested in how Segal has playfully represented the aftermath of mundane consumption through a series of images. As a photographer, he appears to be using his critical and artistic practices to inspire active change within society.

Online Data and Hashtag Analysis…

“Facebook has Sponsored Stories. Twitter has Promoted Tweets. Buzzfeed has Promoted Posts. They’re all based on social gestures and activities, each targeted to people, whether friends or birds of a feather, who might share similar interests.

“If you’re bothering to read this, you probably already know hashtags are those short subject labels, starting with a # or hash sign, that describe the topic a tweet or other shared item is about. They didn’t start with Twitter, but they became popular thanks to their common use in tweets. That use has spread to other social networks, from Pinterest to Instagram (though not very often on Facebook, for some reason).”

“…social ad firm RadiumOne announced it’s making hashtag targeting available to advertisers so they can reach like-minded consumers in real-time across the Web based on the hashtags they’re using.”

“…Nike can reach consumers who use the hashtag #nike, or #olympics, or #fitness with ads for running shoes. Or McDonald’s could target people who tag their tweet or Instagram photo #burgers or even #hungry.”

[RadiumOne] “The company hopes to extend it to Twitter, Instagram, and other services, though it’s not clear when, since this will require deals with those companies.”

“Hashtags, Chahal says, allow the company to “add another layer of signal” on its existing targeting. By the way, given the common use of ironic or negative hashtags, RadiumOne has filters to avoid placing ads based on, say, the hashtag “#Nikesucks.”

“Chahal says RadiumOne is the only one targeting hashtags so far. Although it’s hard to imagine no one else is doing some kind of hashtag targeting, he says the company has a patent pending on its ShareGraph product, now including the use of hashtags for targeting ads.”

“But targeting the words that people themselves use to describe content or products could prove to be an even more direct, real-time signal of their interests–and perhaps what they might want to buy. At the least, it’s apparent that Facebook, for all its dominance as a social network, won’t have a monopoly on social data that can be turned into advertising gold.”

Instagram added an option for people to follow hashtag and have a curated selection of posts and Stories featuring that hashtag appear alongside the normal posts and Stories in a person’s corresponding feeds.

Instagram will use an algorithm to automatically select which posts are included in a hashtag’s feed and Story based on factors like recency and quality, according to an Instagram spokesperson. Instagram will not notify accounts if their posts or Stories are included in a hashtag’s feed or Story, the spokesperson said.”

“People will also be able to see the hashtags that others follow in a list next to that of the non-hashtag accounts that those other people follow. If an account is private, only the people following that account will be able to see which hashtags the account follows, as is already the case with non-hashtag follows.

“When you find a hashtag you like, open the hashtag page and tap on the follow button. You’ll begin seeing top posts from that hashtag in your feed and some of the latest stories in your stories bar. You can always unfollow a hashtag at any time,” according to an Instagram blog post announcing the news.”

“The addition of hashtag following — and the hashtag’s role as a proxy for people’s interests and a tool to reach people with those interests — could pave a new path for ad targeting and delivery on Instagram, as well as for misuse.

“Instagram is not opening up its new hashtag-following feature to advertisers at the moment, according to the spokesperson. But it’s easy to see how it could. The Facebook-owned company could sell brands on paying to have their posts inserted into a hashtag’s feed or Story. Or if it feared turning off the hashtag’s followers with an influx of sponsored posts, Instagram could add the option for brands to target their ads to the people who follow a given hashtag. It could also pitch brands on creating sponsored hashtags that people would be able to follow. Brands can already create their own hashtags and hope they take off on Instagram, but in buying a hypothetical sponsored hashtag, the brand could receive analytics on how people used the hashtag, as well as ways to target those people and others who saw posts featuring the hashtag. Instagram could also promote the hashtag as a paid placement in hashtag-related search results.”

“…brands are unlikely to be the only ones looking to pounce on Instagram’s hashtag-following feature. People on Instagram — and Twitter and Facebook and any other platform that features hashtags — already hijack hashtags, adding them to the captions of otherwise unrelated posts in order to draw attention. Examples can be innocuous, like using a trending hashtag to try to get new followers, or malicious, like doing so to spread misinformation or otherwise controversial content. Now, Instagram is indirectly incentivizing this misappropriation by allowing a hashtag’s audience to organize itself and by broadcasting algorithmically selected posts using the hashtag to that audience.

Instagram has at least one measure in place to try to prevent, or at least mitigate, any potential misappropriation. According to its spokesperson, the app is adding a new “Don’t Show for This Hashtag” option in the menu attached to each post or Story in their feeds, which can be accessed by tapping the “…” in a post’s top-right corner or a Story’s bottom-left corner. People will be able to use that option when they find an irrelevant or otherwise inappropriate hashtag-related post or Story in their feeds and flag the post or Story to Instagram.”

 “…Google announced updates to its YouTube offering for advertisers, including a promise of new measurement tools to help marketers understand their campaigns. But it was the introduction of search data into the targeting of YouTube video spots that most intrigued advertisers.”

“…”There has been targeting on YouTube based on what videos people watch there,” said one top advertising exec, speaking on condition of anonymity because of a close relationship with Google.Now, for anyone logged in, their search history can be applied to targeting on YouTube. There’s some interesting possibilities there, and it greatly expands the audience advertisers could reach.”…”

“Google users can turn off ads personalization in their settings.

“As more viewership on YouTube shifts to mobile, we’re making it easier for advertisers to deliver more relevant, useful ads across screens,” Diya Jolly, YouTube’s director of product management, said in the blog post. “Now, information from activity associated with users’ Google accounts (such as demographic information and past searches) may be used to influence the ads those users see on YouTube.”

Ms. Jolly described how someone searching for a winter coat could then see an ad in YouTube from a retailer.

Google said that more than 50% of YouTube video is viewed on mobile devices.”

“Google also revealed that it was working on a “cloud-based measurement solution” over the next year, to give advertisers more information into how their campaigns perform but balancing that with consumer privacy.”

“If you feel like Facebook has more ads than usual, you aren’t imagining it: Facebook’s been inundating us with more and more ads lately, and using your information—both online and offline—to do it.”

“For most people, Facebook’s advertising system is insider-baseball that doesn’t really affect how we use the service. But as the targeted ads—the advertisements that take the data you provide to offer ads specific to you—get more accurate and start pulling in information from other sources (including the stuff you do offline), it’s more important than ever to understand their system. To figure out how this all works, I spoke with Elisabeth Diana, manager of corporate communication at Facebook. Let’s kick it off with the basics of how the targeted ads work online before moving on to some of the changes we’ll see with the recent inclusion of offline shopping data.”

“The most obvious example of a targeted ad uses something you like—say Target—and then shows an ad on the right side or in the newsfeed that simply says, “[Name] likes Target.” What you and your friends like helps determine what everyone on your friends list sees for ads. Any ad you click on then increases the likelihood of another similar ad.”

“When an advertiser creates an ad of Facebook, they can select all sorts of parameters so they reach the right people. A simple example of a parameter would be: “Someone engaged to be married, who lives in New York, between the ages of 20-30.” That’s simple, but advertisers can actually narrow that down to insane specifics, like “Someone engaged to be married, who lives in New York, between the ages of 20-30, who likes swimming, and who drives a BMW.” If your profile fits those parameters, you’ll likely see the ad. If you want to see how it works, you can even try your hand at creating an ad’.”

“It boils down to this: the more information you put about yourself on Facebook—where you live, your age, where (and if) you graduated college, the companies, brands, and activities you like, and even where you work—determines what kind of ads you’ll see. In theory, it makes it so targeted ads are more relevant to you.”

“The way Facebook targets ads is based a lot around the information you provide. Using your likes, location, or age, Facebook puts you in a demographic and advertises to you. But what happens when you don’t include any of that information on your profile? It turns out that your friends are used to fill in the gaps.”

Targeted advertising using behavioural data and social data mining – Conference Paper:

“Mobile phones are ubiquitous today. They are not only used as means of communication, but since the advent of smartphones, one can also perform web search, video streaming, image sharing and status updates on the social media. They have dismantled the location barriers entirely.”

Users, today, are flooded with irrelevant and extraneous advertisements and offers, which might result in dissatisfaction of the customer. If the process of recommending advertisements to users, which they find pertinent, could be ameliorated, it would open a plethora of new opportunities for businesses, and increase customer retention.”

“The explosive growth of social networks has led to prolific availability in customer tastes and preferences. Users today share everything, be it their preferences in food or in clothes with the help of social networks on a regular basis. This data can be exploited to serve the customers better and offer them the advertisements they would be delighted to see.”

“To provide relevant advertisements to consumers, systems have to consider their location as well. The consumers will be highly contented if the offers shown to them are easily accessible in nearby areas. There are several devices in use today for providing the location of a person.”

“In this paper, we present the idea of using a ‘beacon’ or a ‘Bluetooth Low Energy Device’ for accessing the location of user. The beacon devices are an indoor proximity system which transmit a signal using Bluetooth Low Energy, or BLE for short – the signal contains a unique identifier for that beacon [3]. ”

“When a BLE-enabled device (like a smartphone), comes in the range of the beacon signal, an action can be triggered in the device or some contextually relevant message can be sent or notifications can be triggered, provided the device has its ‘Bluetooth’ service operational.”

“Beacon is the best available option when it comes to indoor location positioning, communication and analytics. This technology easily edges out Wi-Fi and NFC with its combination of flexibility, accuracy and a low-cost infrastructure [14].

“In spite of the widely available and diversified assortment of online social networks, most recent social network-based recommendations have concentrated on limited kinds of online sociality (i.e., trust-based networks and online friendships) [2].”

“There are not many systems in use currently which employ the combination of spatial and social data to provide recommendations to user.”

“A first recommendation via context-driven querying and search approach uses contextual information to query or search a certain repository of resources (e.g., restaurants) and presents the best matching resources (e.g., nearby restaurants that are currently open) to the user.”

“A second contextual preference elicitation and estimation approach is a more recent trend in context-aware recommender system research. This approach attempts to model and learn contextual user preferences [15].”

Fatemeh Khoshnood et al [6] discussed a general model of a recommender system using the social data and location based services to provide suitable recommendations to the user on her mobile device. Wun-Shi-Yang et al [7] propose a data mining framework that utilizes the concept of social network for the targeted advertising of products by observing cohesive subgroups from the user’s social network account and based on that infer the probability of liking a particular product category from transaction records.”

C. Biancalana et al [8] discuss in their paper how the current generation of location-based services (LBSs) fail to provide personalized recommendations and only suggest the nearby the point of interests (POIs). To overcome such a limitation, they realized a social recommender system able to identify user preferences and information needs, thus suggesting personalized recommendations related to possible POIs in the surroundings.”

“Many investigations have been performed to suggest suitable services to users. Some context aware systems considering spatial data are summarized in Table I.”

“Traditionally, the approach taken to target advertisements was to analyze a historical database of previous transactions of the customers, with the help of some methodical tools and identify a list of customers who are most likely to respond to the advertisements of the product.”

“Hence, many recommender systems have appeared today based on advertising products by obtaining users’ preferences in forms of ratings and reviews either explicitly (stated directly by the users) or implicitly (inferred from previous transaction history or Web logs).”

Personalization and recommender systems can potentially reduce the omnipresent information overload in our networked world, though a promising and possibly complementary approach is to utilize context, but this has been rarely applied in personalization systems so far [13].”

Mobile devices have minimized spatial limitations, such that one can personalize content in a suitable frame considering individual’s location. Still, it is not possible to consider user’s interests and preferences in a suggestion provided using just location-based servicesTable II summarizes differences between user preferences and user context.”


Current generation of LBSs (Location Based Services) offer recommendations based on the user distance only, overlooking the user preferences. Hence, the idea of using a recommender system based on social preferences was put forward. It has the capability of identifying user’s interests, user’s current location, and more fitting suggestions based on the conjunction of two. These social recommender systems are a combination of social data, taken from user’s social networks and spatial data. Since user’s information on social networking sites have personal data, considering user’s current location and the information existing in social network data base, it is possible to provide user with an appropriate recommendation. This method not only decreases users’ interaction, but they can easily and more efficiently acquire their favorite information and products.”

“…we use a BLE (Bluetooth low energy) device to determine the spatial location of a user and then after mining the social account data of that user, we provide him with relevant deals/offers currently active in that area.” 

“The process can be explained in the following steps:

  1. A BLE device is installed at the entry of a shopping mall which helps us discover the spatial location of our user. The user would have to install the android application which we have developed for connecting with the BLE device.
  2. Currently active advertisements of all the locations are already stored in our server with some associated tags. Associated tags would be keywords by which each advertisement can be described.
  3. After taking required permissions from the user, we extract data from his/her social profile page. This is done through the application itself. Facebook’s graph API is used for extracting data from user’s Facebook profile. The data extracted is the basic profile information and his/her likes and interests, statuses and recently checked in places.
  4. The collected data is then sent to our servers in a JSON format for analysis.
  5. A keyword extraction algorithm is then applied to the data to determine the major keywords about the person and his/her likes and interests. We have used the algorithm RAKE (Rapid Keyword Extraction Algorithm) [9] for this purpose.”

[Figuer 2: E.g. moto android, amazon, christmas, sale, cuisine, wedding dresses, female, food, friends, fun, halloween party, party friends, party, ps4, vogue, vero moda, sale, van heusen, fun wedding]

“We first split the text in an array of words using the word delimiters. We then split the array into sequences of contiguous words at stop word and phrase delimiters. Figure 2 shows a set of candidate keywords.”

“When we have identified all the candidate keywords, we draw a word co-occurrence graph (shown in Table III). Next we calculate a ‘score’ which gives the importance of a keyword. The score for a candidate keyword is defined as the scores of individual member words.”

“Several metrics for calculating word scores are evaluated, based on the degree and frequency of word vertices in the co-occurrence graph:

  1. Word frequency (freq (w)),
  2. Word degree(deg(w)), and
  3. Ratio of degree to frequency(deg(w)j freq(w)).

We can say that deg(w) favors words that occur often and in longer candidate keywords while words that occur frequently regardless of the number of words with which they co-occur are favored by freq(w). Words that predominantly occur in longer candidate keywords are favored by deg(w)/freq(w).”

“After the word scores for individual words are calculated, the candidate word scores are found. The score for each candidate keyword is computed as the sum of its member word scores.

“After the scores are computed for all the candidate keywords, we take the top 5 candidate keywords, based on their scores.

6. These keywords are then matched with the tags of different advertisements already stored at our server.

7. After matching and ranking, the top advertisements are recommended to the user on the basis of rank provided by the matching done in the earlier step.

In this way, the user is provided with the advertisements which is most suited for him/her.”

Discusses the study whereby they tested the efficiency of this method on over 2000 students during the ‘cultural festival of Delhi Technological University’…

“The young crowd which is generally more active on social networking websites gathered in such a large masses motivated us to evaluate our proposed model.”

“…we asked 85 visitors to install and sign up on our android application. We showed them 10 random advertisements snippets, belonging to random locations, and asked them to choose their top three preferred advertisements. A BLE device was installed at our stationed booth in the college premises. When the students with the application installed in their phones, passed by our booth, a notification triggered on their phone, through our application, showing them the top three advertisements our application has recommended for them.”

Word Scores…

“We found that in 45 cases (approximately 53%), our application showed exactly the result that the students had chosen earlier. In 12 cases (approximately 15%), the application matched 2 out of 3 results and in approximately 20 cases (approximately 23%) the application matched only 1 result. The remaining percentage of students chose advertisements which were not recommended by us.”

“Here, we have proposed a novel idea for the targeted advertising of products. Personalization process is completed using the information obtained from the user’s social network. Spatial information is obtained using Bluetooth Low Energy devices. The systems for targeted advertising existing today provide suggestions considering only user’s interests. To solve this problem, we have proposed a model which uses combination of social and spatial data. Such models are capable of obtaining user’s preferences and based on their current location, they provide more appropriate advertisements. In a touristic place, suggested model can be used to find entertainment places like, parks and restaurants or art museums and concerts being held in that area.”

“In addition with the location, such systems can take into account a variety of context factors that may have an impact on the relevance of an item (i.e., make the item more or less relevant), such as, the location of the user, his/her mood, and the activity that he/she is performing [12].”


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Still-Life photography (2018) Wikipedia [Online]. 7 Jan. Available from: [Accessed 29th January 2018]

Richard Kuiper (2018) Dutch Still Life in Plastic. Available from: [Accessed 5th February 2018]

Hof, R. (2018) Here’s A New Way You’ll Soon Get Targeted For Ads: Your Hashtags. Forbes [Online] 12 December. Available from: [Accessed 9th February 2018]

Sloane, G. (2017) ADVERTISERS CAN NOW TARGET YOUTUBE ADS BASED ON PEOPLE’S GOOGLE SEARCH HISTORIES. AdAge [Online] 20 January. Available from: [Accessed 3rd January 2018]

Buddenstein, A. (2015) See Herbert Bayer’s Surreal Photomontages at the Santa Barabara Museum of Art. Artnet [Online] 5 June. Available from: [Accessed 9th February 2018]

Klosowski, T. (2013) How Facebook Uses Your Data to Target Ads, Even Offline. LifeHacker [Online] 11 April. Available from: [Accessed 3rd February 2018]

Bhatia, V., Hasija, V. (2016) Targeted advertising using behavioural data and social data mining. Eighth International Conference on Ubiquitous and Future Networks. Austria, 5-8 July 2016. (no place) IEEE, pp 937-942

Peterson, T. (2017) Instagram’s hashtag follow could be a new avenue for ads, misuse. MarketingLand [Online] 12 December. Available from:

Albiac, S. (2018) You are not in the news. Available from: [Accessed 6th January 2018]

KickStarter (2018) 7 Days of Garbage & Daily Bread. Available from: [Accessed 4th February 2018]

Victoria and Albert Museum (2017) The Lonely Metropolitian Photography – Herbert Bayer.  Available from: [Accessed 9th February 2018]

Hillen, S. (2018) Sean Available from: [Accessed 9th February 2018]

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