Is this the Real Life? Is this Just Fantasy? Caught in a Landslide, no Escape from Reality #40 #cong23 #reality


In a time of deepfake, augmented reality, virtual reality, artificial intelligence can we believe anything we hear, watch or read without witnessing it ourselves. Even when we witness something people interpret and experience differently.

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Key Takeaways:

  1. Is there more than one reality? Are Freddie and Elvis really dead?
  2. Can you consider yourself a positivist, a constructivist or a pragmatist in a time of deepfake?
  3. Can you identify deepfakes?
  4. Are we in fear of losing our creativity, innovation and individuality to the technology.

About Noreen Henry:

Academic Develop (N-TUTORR Project) and Lecturer in Computing at the Atlantic Technological University.

Contacting Noreen Henry:

You can connect with Noreen on LinkedIn or send her an email

By Noreen Henry

When I read the Congregation 2023 theme of “Reality”, this is what started to play in my head:
Bohemian Rhapsody – Queen (Lyrics) 🎵 – YouTube

In the world of research, we have ontology which examines “what is reality?” At a basic level there are ontologies:

  1. There is one single reality or truth.
  2. There are multiple realities.
  3. Reality is constantly negotiated, debated, or interpreted.

While Epistemology examines the question “How can I know reality”. It relates to how we understand knowledge, how we understand our own thinking process, and how we think other know. At a basic level we can consider three epistemologies:

  1.  Belief that knowledge can be measured using reliable designs and tools.
  2. Belief that knowledge can be measured to discover the underlying meaning.
  3. Knowledge should be examined using the best tools available to solve the problem.

Combining your own position on ontology and epistemology together you will get a holistic view of how you understand knowledge. This is your research paradigm. In Social Science there are three research paradigms:

  • Positivism
  • Constructivism
  • Pragmatism
Research Paradigm  Ontology  Epistemology 


One single reality or truth.


Knowledge can be measured using reliable designs and tools.




Multiple Realities Knowledge can be measured to discover the underlying meaning. 
Pragmatism Reality is constantly negotiated, debated, or interpreted Knowledge should be examined using the best tools available to solve the problem.

Looking internally, you may identify with one of the three paradigms but in the current world of virtual reality, artificial intelligence, deepfake, alternative facts etc., can we clearly identify?

Gamage, et al. (2022) define deepfake as “synthetic media generated using sophisticated algorithms which reflect things that did not happen for real but computer-generated for manipulation purposes. … created in the form of image, audio and video by leveraging AI are far more realistic to identify if its being synthetically created by replacing someone else’s voice or video.” A high-profile example goes back to 2017 when two advertising artists used images and voice of Mark Zukerburg and a well know news channel imagery to present a recording of Zukerburg hyping about having data from billions of users. (Somers, 2020)

Somers (2020) recommends three areas to pay attention to in recognising deepfake as face, audio, and lighting. But with advances in the technology this is no longer as beneficial.

To test your ability to detect deep fake try out:
DeepFakes, Can You Spot Them? (

If you scored as poorly as I did go back again and ask yourself, are you still a positivist, a constructivist or a pragmatist?

If you scored as poorly as I did go back again and ask yourself, are you still a positivist, a constructivist or a pragmatist?

So, who does thrive in the deepfake world? According to Wel (2023) in Psychology Today is it the those calling the “liar’s dividend” that is those that claim that anything and everything is fake even when there is data to show that it is true or does exists or did happen. Putting doubt of misinformation is enough to discredit a source.

To combat this Wel (2023) recommend investment in detection tools and education on identification of AI by individuals. We see similar recommendation in education today in relation to AI and particularly generative AI in education but no solutions!

Gamage, D., Ghasiya, P. & Sasahara, K., 2022. Deepfakes and Society: What Lies Ahead?, Tokyo: s.n.
Queen, 1975. Bohemian Rhapsody. London: Queen & Roy Thomas Baker.
Somers, M., 2020. Deepfakes, Explained. [Online]
Available at:
[Accessed 20 11 2023].
Wel, . M., 2023. Who Thrives in a World of Deepfakes and Misinformation? The “liar’s dividend” benefits people who cast doubt on objective evidence.. [Online]
Available at:
[Accessed 20 11 20023].

The Good Life #26 #cong22


Sometimes the best purpose in life is to sit and watch 1970’s sitcoms.

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Key Takeaways:

  1. Live
  2. Love
  3. Learn
  4. Laugh

About Noreen Henry

Noreen is a Lecturer in Computing on the Mayo campus of Atlantic Technological University (formally GMIT) since January 2000.

With a background in software and technology management she has in recent years pivoted into the area of Digital Strategy & Marketing, Cybersecurity and Business analytics.

Contacting Noreen Henry

You can connect with Noreen on Twitter or send her an email.

By Noreen Henry

This 1970’s British sitcom clip that is more relevant to life today than it possibly was in its time – turn off the light upstairs – threats of imminent, likely, possible power cuts – power cuts that can be rotten especially for people without their own generator. The struggles and kitchen conversations of the 1970’s are back with us again. But today we strive to be the sustainable, eco-warriors like the once eccentric Tom and Barbara instead of their alter ego Jerry & Margo.

So, in the hope of finding todays version of the good life I asked 38 colleagues just one quick question:

What is your purpose in life?

The selfless nature of the response was uplifting, the three most popular words were – enjoy, family and others, followed by live and good.

Our purpose in life is:

  • To live and make the most of it.
  • To have a good time, enjoy it and not work too hard!
  • Live well & be available to support others
  • Be kind and helpful
  • To be the best human I can.
  • Drink good red wine
  • To encourage and inspire others to live their best lives
  • To keep learning new things and always be curious.
  • Family
  • To be happy
  • To live it to the full, serve others and enjoy myself.
  • To care for the people I love
  • Enjoy all aspects of life
  • To look on in awe at the incredible universe
  • Having a good and easy lifestyle
  • To contribute to society in a meaningful and thoughtful way and to raise a family that does the same, as well as be a loving support to family and friends in our community.
  • To make a difference to others, a positive one!
  • Enjoy my family, enjoy work, continue to learn every day and spend time with my friends and family. Share knowledge and contribute my skills to help others who are curious to know more.
  • To make a difference to people’s lives from a positive perspective
  • To make everyone smile 😊
  • To live my best life
  • To be happy
  • To be the best I can be
  • To have my life be my legacy, be kind and loving and have no regrets
  • Be content

And then we have the 7.5% of response with – I don’t known.

We all have days and whole periods of our lives when we are in that 7.5%. We could look at the likes of Psychology Today telling us how to find purpose: “Step 1: Find out what drives you. Step 2: Find out what energizes you. Step 3: Find out what you are willing to sacrifice for. Step 4: Find out who you want to help. Step 5: Find out how you want to help.”

However, sometimes the best purpose in life is to sit and watch 1970’s sitcoms without a feeling that we must be doing anything else. Just to rest, rejuvenate and laugh because life is hard enough without having to look for a purpose. Bravo Jerry!

What’s your community? #44 #cong19


Online communities form because they have an internal need or in reaction to an external event. By identifying your community type, it will help you develop your marketing plans, budgets and capabilities to best engage with the community.

4 Key Takeaways:

  1. Understand why your community would form.
  2. Use it well or lose it!
  3. Members are on a mission, know their mission.
  4. Know where to spend your budget.

About Noreen Henry:

Noreen is a technology lecturer on the Mayo campus of GMIT since January 2000.

With a background in software and technology management she has in recent years pivoted into the area of Social Web Strategy and educational areas such as Learning and Innovation Skills.

She co-delivers the Marketing Strategy Theory and Application module on the Springbaord funded Postgraduate Certificate in Digital Media & Marketing.

Contacting Noreen Henry:

You can follow Noreen on Twitter or send her an email.

By Noreen Henry

There are two reasons why a community will form online:

1. Because they want to, they have an internal need. These are referred to as passion communities.

2. Because they are driven to, in reaction to an external event these are trigger event communities. (Hlavac, 2014, pp. 12-14)

If you understand why your community should form, what they seek and how they engage with peers, influencers and experts, you will be positioned to build your social strategies.

A Passion Community Defined: Is one that contains highly focused brand and lifestyle advocates often on a third-party (one which you have no control over) website that the brand does not manage. This is a high-intensity group, containing members that pose opportunities to engage with influencers, but also risks of brands being unable to manage in a scalable manner. The most engaged members of these communities, we will refer to as Passionistas. (Owyang, 2012)

Passion communities address topics members care passionately about. They want to hear from the influencers who identify key trends. But, they also want to talk to their peer to express and hone their opinions. As a business, you will want to engage members by giving them the newest content and ample opportunities to have peer to peer engagements.

Passion communities are permanent communities with stable members, who are always interested in looking for new trends and information.

To enable a successful passion community:

• Have opportunities for peer to peer engagements.
• Keep information current and on the cutting edge.
• Ability to interact with influencers and experts.
• To hone and validate their opinions.

If you engage or create a passion community but don’t keep it current and on trend, you will lose your members quickly.
Passion communities have permanent members so once we acquire them, we can keep them if we give them a reason to stay and engage. This means you can minimize your acquisition budget once we acquire members. But need to spend more on new content and new ways to engage.

Trigger event communities are the exact opposite.
A Trigger Event community forms to support individuals during a life change (for example having children, going through divorce) or social events (such as #blacklivesmatter and #bringbackourgirls) that touch people while they are happening but are bound in a certain point in time.

Permanent communities with temporary members, created to address a life stage change or external event. The knowledge they seek will change as they move from the start to the finish of a trigger event e.g., planning a wedding, retirement, pregnancy. If you can help them achieve their goals they will welcome you into their community.

Members are on a mission to accomplish something. They want proven information and tools to help them achieve their community mission. They are on a journey (possibly your customer journey!). You need to be able to identify where they are in their journey and get them the information they need to accomplish it. Your objective is to help them move from where they currently are to their destination. If you help them, they will keep coming back.

Your acquisition budget should tip the content budget because you can reuse content as your community members traverse their journey but once they have accomplished their goal they will naturally move on therefore you need to have a constant supply of new members.

Regardless of the type of community you have, you need to be the trusted expert within the community. You need to provide reliable content, information and guidance highly relevant to your community.
By identifying the community type, it will help us develop our marketing plans, budgets and capabilities to best engage with the community.

Brudner, E. (2017, 08 28). 30 Types of Sales Trigger Events and How to Track Them. Retrieved from Hubspot:
Hlavac, R. (2014). Social IMC – socail Strategies with Bottom-Line ROI. Nort Charleston: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform.
Owyang, J. (2012, 10 18). Breakdown: A Strategy for Engaging Passion Communities. Retrieved from Jeremiah Owyang: 

Ideas Won’t Put Food on the Table! #23 #cong18


Be creative. Be innovative.

These two words are:
1. over used
2. misunderstood
3. under appreciated
…but together they can bring you a long way.

4 Key Takeaways:

  1. Be creative and innovative.
  2. Be the thinker and the doer.
  3. Be the lone nut seeking the first follower.
  4. Or else be the first follower.

About Noreen Henry:

Noreen Henry is a lecturer in IT at the Mayo campus of GMIT. She lectures in IT support, training, project management & service management on the IT Support and Computer Services Management course and chair the B. Sc. (Hons.) in Digital Media & Society. She has a particular interest in developments in IT and education.

Contacting Noreen Henry:

You can follow Noreen on Twitter or reach her by email.

By Noreen Henry.

Creative is defined by the Oxford dictionary as “Relating to or involving the use of the imagination or original ideas to create something.”

Innovative is defined as “(of a person) introducing new ideas; original and creative in thinking.”

In my simplified understanding and appreciation being creative is coming up with the ideas and being innovative is bringing the idea to reality. Or creativity and innovation could be considered as the difference between thinking and doing.

So, can one person be both creative and not innovative? Do they always come together? Is one better than the other? Can you teach someone to be creative and/or innovative?

Loads of people have loads of ideas but not all come to fruition. Steve Jobs reflected on Thinkers and Doers as “it’s very easy to take credit for the thinking, the doing is more concrete… it’s very easy for someone to say ‘Oh I thought of this three years ago’ usually when you dig a little deeper you find that the people that really did it were also the people that really worked through the hard intellectual problems”

Steve obviously values the doers.

Theodore Levitt, former editor of Harvard Business Review, published a controversial article in 1963 titled “Creativity is Not Enough”, following is an extract. 4

“Creativity” is not the miraculous road to business growth and affluence that is so abundantly claimed these days. And for the line manager, particularly, it may be more of a millstone than a milestone. Those who extol the liberating virtues of corporate creativity over the somnambulistic vices of corporate conformity may actually be giving advice that in the end will reduce the creative animation of business. This is because they tend to confuse the getting of ideas with their implementation—that is, confuse creativity in the abstract with practical innovation; not understand the operating executive’s day-to-day problems; and underestimate the intricate complexity of business organizations….

The fact that you can put a dozen inexperienced people into a room and conduct a brainstorming session that produces exciting new ideas shows how little relative importance ideas themselves actually have. Almost anybody with the intelligence of the average businessman can produce them, given a halfway decent environment and stimulus. The scarce people are those who have the know-how, energy, daring, and staying power to implement ideas….

Theodore in his male dominated world is also looking for the innovators, the doers.

If innovation is the greater ability, can we teach someone to be innovative or is it a personal attribute? Is it a personal characteristic or a skill? Is it your tolerance of risk? And will put food on the table?

Sometimes the braver position is the person that sees the value in your idea, trusts your vision and joins in.

The Lone Nut