Wednesday, 23 June 2010

The New Black: There’s a new networking blog site and it’s a godsend for lesbians, says Beau Jackson

I first discovered Tumblr through a friend. On a Facebook status she had posted a link to an article on her Tumblr page and, liking the creativity and freedom of the posts I saw, I decided to create my own ‘tumblelog’.

Like any other blog or social networking site you first have to create a name for your page, and from there you can begin to post pictures, text, music and videos…but then, who’s going to see it?
As my friend did, you could always post links to your tumblelog on the likes of Facebook and Twitter, but Tumblr is not meant to be an extension of the network you have going with your friends. Instead it is an anonymous outlet for you, viewed by people with the same interests as you, who live in different places all over the world. These people are your followers.

Your followers are people who choose to receive a stream of your posts on what is called their ‘dashboard’, better known as a homepage. You in turn receive your own stream of posts from people you choose to get regular updates from, as with Facebook and Twitter. However, Tumblr avoids all those annoying updates from the clearly very fun party people who log in just to say “9iii’,m sdos drijmk!” on a night out.

Over my time on Tumblr I have gathered together a stream of people that seem largely of the lesbian persuasion.
Seeing the content they post and their popularity I asked a handful of them if the self professed “easiest way to blog” site lives up to it’s name and, more importantly, if they share my feeling that it is particularly ideal for the LGBT community to express themselves and receive support.

All of the users asked agreed that they post content without a fear of being judged or discriminated against – result! Still, that is not to say that prejudice doesn’t happen on Tumblr. We don’t live in a ‘perfect world’ and so we can’t expect any part of it to be without prejudice and discrimination. When such an instance of tunnel vision does occur on the site, there is, as pointed out by Claire of thenameofasong a ready-made community on hand to fight against it, probably much more so than the support you may receive from Facebook, as the people following your tumblelog generally share the same interests and opinions as you do.

The inevitability of this situation is then that users of Tumblr will strike up new friendships with each other, particularly useful for, for example, a 16- year-old lesbian living in a small town without a gay community. Allison of the blog itsbeendaysnow told me how she had met her current girlfriend through Tumblr, a relationship that probably wouldn’t have happened without the site, and others told me of their friendships with people across the globe. The same can be said in conjunction with other social networking sites, but with Tumblr there’s so much more freedom with the people you meet and it’s a lot easier to quickly find someone with the same interests.

It should go without saying that Tumblr provides a great support network particularly for younger people concerned about their sexuality. Again, the people asked unanimously agreed that they have witnessed or they themselves have helped teens with questions about sexuality. Candace of FYLL commented that her Tumblr famous blog had not only made young girls feel comfortable with their sexuality but that it also “made them LOVE being a part of this community”.

And so, it’s safe to say that the ‘Tumblr family’ is going to keep on growing. But here’s hoping that the site remains a relatively prejudice free and supportive unit, where people can share experiences, fears and ideas freely.

Thursday, 10 June 2010

Teeth whitening - they're all at it!

Simon Cowell's had his done. Sarah Harding looks dashing with hers, and Cheryl Cole is definitely a new woman since she had her pearly whites doctored.

I was lucky enough to have my teeth whitened by Wyman Chan , the very chap responsible for Miss Cole's scrubbed teeth. After I'd gotten over the sad realisation that this is probably the closest to Cheryl I will ever get, I jumped at the opportunity to give DIVA readers a special promotion to keep you smiling beautifully.

For £250 rather than the RRP of £595, DIVA readers can get the full treatment from Wyman and his team, simply by quoting DIVA when booking at Smile Studios. The procedure took little over an hour, beginning with a relaxing few minutes in a massage chair. The staff are all extremely courteous and adhering to your every whim. During the main whitening session, you are provided with DVD goggles and a headset, and a choice of films to keep you occupied. I was asked on numerous occasions about my comfort, and by the end of the hour I had almost melted into the dentist's chair! Not a feeling normally associated with a trip to the tooth doc's.

Dr Wyman even showed me my before and after pictures, and I have to say my teeth are noticeably whiter. If I had a pound for every comment I've had about my teeth, I'd be a very rich woman, and now, like Cheryl and Simon, they really are my pearly whites!

Call to book your appointment now: 020 7439 0888