a slip or blunder in etiquette, manners, or conduct;
an embarrassing social blunder or indiscretion.
synonyms: error; impropriety
literally: false step (in french)
I come before you today to confess that I have slipped in conduct and didn't even realize it. When I started my blog a year ago, I had ZERO experience in creating and maintaining a personal website. I did some online research, read some books and just kind of dove in head first. I wanted to share my life with the world and didn't want to wait until I learned EVERYTHING about sharing on social media outlets. I figured I had enough basic knowledge to get started and would continue to learn as I went. I was also brand new to twitter. I was REALLY excited about being exposed to all these new birds of a feather that flocked together. I wanted to meet everyone and so I sent out a little "Hi, I'm Teresa and I'm new here" message to multiple birds---err, I mean people. Apparently, this is frowned upon and considered a No-No by the twitter Po-Po. So, I got pulled over by the #twithighpoffs (Twitter Highway Patrol Officers-I just thought of that). For ease in pronunciation, sound it out, separate the letters and say "Twit Hype Offs". These dudes threw the red FOUL flag at me and put me in time out for a few hours to think about what I had done.
I am a very creative person and I love using music to enhance my own, personal creations. I am not however, a musician. I do not write music or sing professionally. I am not even a good amateur singer. I can dance, but I cannot carry a tune to save me. However, I love music and have a vast jukebox in my head that plays whatever song is appropriate to my current situation. My Dad was a Journalist in the Navy. He was a DJ for part of his career and I was exposed to ALL types of music growing up. I am one of those people that has a theme song for EVERYTHING. My taste in music is all over the map (and how appropriate is THAT)!? I feel that everything is better with a soundtrack or playlist. Unfortunately, I am incapable of creating my own. I use songs that I already know. Songs that I have heard in the past that quite possibly have a completely different meaning. For example, the song "I can see Clearly Now" came to my mind when staying at a property called Clear View Suites. The lyrics and even the beat of the song was PERFECT for my slideshow of pictures of the beautiful resort. When I was staying on a Yacht, the song that popped into my head was "Come Sail Away" and I used that in my slideshow. It was done in an attempt to get you to see what I see, hear what I hear. I had not done thorough research on copyright laws and was under the impression that giving the artist and song "credit" or acknowledgement was sufficient. I made youtube videos and included the artist and name of the song so people could buy it on iTunes if desired. I thought I was helping the artist by SHARING their work (giving them more exposure), and helping YOU, the reader, by exposing you to new music.
Insert LOUD buzzer HERE------WRONG ANSWER!
One of the things I aim to do for YOU is to get you to see outside the box (or see things from a different perspective). I decided I needed to look at what I was doing from a different angle. As someone who writes my own content and takes my own photographs for my own website (that I pay for), would I want someone else to "share" my original content on their site without getting my permission? Probably not. Even though as an artist my goal is to just be heard, I would rather you hear what I am saying from MY mouth and not someone else's. In my original thought process, I felt like if I paid for the songs I used and just shared them with my own photos, where is the harm? It didn't seem any different than having a party and playing music that we then made up our own dances to. I am not SELLING the songs or making a profit. I am just sharing them so others can enjoy them too.
I had to put myself in my own self imposed "Time Out" to think it through as a mediator of sorts. By stepping outside of my own box that said "You aren't doing anything wrong" and putting myself in my invisible opponents box that said "You are stealing my stuff", I was able to see it from a whole new perspective. I then realized how wrong I was. This is the truest form of empathy. I knew once I had the other persons shoes on, that mine really didn't fit. I thought they did. Until I took them off and put the other pair on. It was only then that I realized I had grown so comfortable in my own shoes that I didn't see the hole in the bottom that was causing a blister to form. I'm just glad I caught it in time! I would much rather change shoes now, put a band aid on the blister and start walking right versus keep walking in the wrong shoes and end up losing my whole leg because of infection that started from a simple false step! (For those of you worried about my blister, this is just an analogy. I'm actually barefoot at home and my feet are just fine.)
Being aware of your actions and making changes to correct them is a key to being successful in life. I am nowhere near perfect and never will be. I am very smart on some topics and know NOTHING on others. I will continue to learn and make mistakes as I go through this journey of life but one thing is for sure. I will be HONEST. I will have INTEGRITY. I will OWN UP when I realize I am doing something wrong. I will pay the consequences for my actions and I will SHARE the experience with you in hopes to prevent you from suffering the same fate. As much as I want to teach you, I also want to learn from you. So if you happen to see me start falling down in the future, please throw me a lifeline, shout at me, or send me a personal email saying "Hey, did you know that such and such is not legal". I probably do not. I love feedback and especially constructive criticism from those smarter than me. I am NOT a lawyer and I don't have money to pay one if I get into trouble. I prefer to be proactive and not reactive so I will take all the unsolicited advice you can throw at me! I am thankful that I realized this mistake before anything happened and I was able to take the videos off my youtube channel. I am in the process of adjusting and editing previous posts that included videos with music. I will replace those videos with photo slideshows without songs. My website just got a lot quieter! You will have to add your own music if you want it when looking at my photos. This lets you bring your own creative element to my work. You get to be the guest DJ! Just spin your own tunes while you look at my images. You know what would be even cooler? Sharing the song that comes into your mind when you see my slideshow. You can just tell me in the comments section and that turns my "lecture" into an open forum discussion. WAY BETTER learning opportunity. Now that kind of sharing, really IS caring!