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New York voters have no 1st Amendment right to snap ballot booth selfies

Enlarge (credit: Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

A New York federal judge is upholding New York's ban on photographing marked ballots in polling places, saying the First Amendment is trumped by the law's stated goal to cut down on election fraud via vote buying and extortion.

US District Judge P. Kevin Castel said the statute deprives a perpetrator of election fraud the modern-day means to verify that a target voted a certain way. That verification method is a selfie of a voter holding a marked ballot at a polling place, which would then be posted to social media, he said.

"The State's interest in the integrity of its elections is paramount. The law is also narrowly tailored...," Castel wrote (PDF) Thursday. "Alternatively, the Court finds that the statute is a reasonable, viewpoint neutral restriction of speech within a non-public forum."

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SelfieTime makes you look like a champ in selfie photographs and FaceTime Video chats

Although some people have no problem with snapping selfies and carrying out FaceTime Video calls with their friends or colleagues, some people simply aren’t happy with the way they look and are more self-conscious about how folks will judge their character.

SelfieTime is a new jailbreak tweak by veteran iOS developer Elias Limneos that can help people of the latter group look better for their selfies and feel more confident during FaceTime Video calls.... Read the rest of this post here

"SelfieTime makes you look like a champ in selfie photographs and FaceTime Video chats" is an article by
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Video shows woman destroying $200,000 of sculptures while taking a selfie

selfie accident

What lengths would you go to snap the perfect selfie? Would you be willing to bend your neck at an awkward angle? Of course you would. What about posing in a public place, with onlookers rolling their eyes? Sure, why not. How about crushing $200,000 worth of fancy sculptures at an art exhibit? For one visitor of LA's 14th Factory, that answer was apparently a "yes" as well, and although the incident took place a couple of weeks back, we finally have a video showing how it all went down (no pun intended).

Continue reading...

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How to snap festive Canada Day photos with your iPhone!

Get festive, fun, and funky this Canada Day and show off your Canuck pride with some stellar iPhone photography!

Canada Day is coming up around the corner, and what better way to show off how much you adore your Maple-syrup-lovin' country than with some patriotic, fun photography!

Here's how you can snap some Canadian masterpieces this Canada Day!

Edit in red and white!

After you snap your perfect Canadian-ified photo for Canada Day, you're probably going to be tempted to add a few fun filters –maybe a FaceTune tweak or two – and call it quits. In reality, playing around and getting creative with different edits and overlaps can really make your pictures stand out.

Whether you're editing your images with VSCO, Instagram, or Photoshop, there are different ways for you to add in specifically colored edits and appropriately-themed, non-tacky filters.

For example, you could take a shot of a street festival going on and isolate all the red in the image, making all the other color black and white. You could take a regular selfie with friends and then overlap a maple-leaf pattern to spice up your patriotism. You could snap a photo of a Canadian flag blowing in the wind and overlap a simple red filter to tint it a bit.

There are so many different, creative ways to edit your images, you just need to think outside the box!

PRO TIP: Find a frame or border online or in a photo editing app that's in the shape of a Canadian flag, and edit all of your images so little pieces are poking out from the maple leaf and two sides while the border is slightly faded to show off more of the image. You photos will instantly stand out and look more interesting across social media!

Boomerang your Canuck pride

I am a big supporter and advocate of all things Boomerang, which is why it probably won't surprise you that I suggest using this app for your Canada Day festivities!

Boomerang works by creating a GIF of sorts that saves as a video format. It records and repeats a couple of seconds of whatever movement you captured, making it not only insanely popular across social media, but one of the most interesting things to watch.

While there are plenty of 'meh' Boomerangs, a good one is a great one.

Whether you're snapping some photos of fireworks, capturing the hustle and bustle of a Canada Day street fair, want to show off your friend cannonballing into the pool with a Canadian flag as a cape, or whatever else your weird, Canadian self desires, Boomeranging a memory instead of simple photographing it can be worthwhile in the long-run.

Perspective and lenses, eh?

It's no surprise that when people are shooting with their iPhone, they normally stand at a standard distance, shoot at a regular height, and don't really experiment with angles or different points of view. While this is great for mediocre photography, it's not great for capturing some amazing photos at the Canada Day celebration you'll be partying at!

The next time you go to shoot an image of a Canada flag, try getting down low or standing above it. Try adding different lenses, like a macro or a fisheye to really change up the menotiney of your photography. Try shifting your perspective and taking multiple shots (and Boomerangs!) from different angles.

It'll surprise you how much more fun mobile photography can be when you're getting a hundred different shots of the same thing all from switching up how you look at it!

Dress to impress

One really simple way to ensure that you're getting the best, most festive, most patriotic Canada Day photos is by being your own subject and dressing to impress: that means pull out your favorite red party dress, put on your white wig, slap on that face paint, and become the ultimate Canadian that you know you are.

Not only will people be stopping to get photos of you if you're at an event or at a bar (or even at a family gathering!) but you'll have some incredibly fun memories and images to scroll through (and throwback to on social media!) for years to come.

Will they be the most artistic, beautiful images? Hell no! But you'll be able to show off your Canadian pride and make other people smile as you pose for selfies with a maple leaf in the middle of your grinning face.

All aboot the fireworks!

Let's say you were working all Canada Day and you finally make it out to the Forks in the evening for food, drink, pals, and fun. While the lighting might not be ideal for selfies and all the festivities have gotten too rowdy to shoot at, there is one saving grace:

The fireworks display!

Shooting firework photography can be a bit tricky and awful repetitive if you're not super careful, but there are a few things to keep in mind when you are shooting fireworks:

  1. If you're ever taking shots of something that's constantly moving or changing direction (like a firework!) then holding down the shutter button for some quick-and-easy rapid-fire/burst mode action is a really good call!

  2. Using your zoom function to capture intricate, crisp, firework details can be a really interesting way to shift the perspective of a typical fireworks photo.

  3. If you're looking to really capture some attention on social media without putting in a ton of effort at your Canada Day or Fourth of July celebration, then I suggest snapping a Boomerang of your favorite fireworks display rather than a photo!

  4. When it comes to fireworks photos, one of the biggest things I can suggest is that if you are going to snap a few pictures, that you get really, really picky about which ones you share online and on social media – alternatively, you could use 24-hour social media platforms like Snapchat, Instagram, and Facebook to share some of your fireworks images without totally flooding someone's timeline.

24-hour social media is your BFF

… Speaking of 24-hour social media, if you're someone who loves to post a lot and gets really excited about events and just wants to share everything you're seeing with everyone forever, then take advantage of 24-hour social media.

24-hour social media is great for a couple of reasons, but the main ones are that a) you don't bug people with constant updates and posts, therefore resulting in lost followers, and b) you're able to capture and show off things that normally wouldn't make the 'cut' for your social media and online aesthetic.

While it's super fun to capture all the hilarity and craziness of a family pool party and share it online, it's not always necessary or smart to post it as a permanent social media post. Why? Well, in all honesty, you probably aren't going to get a ton of engagement for a boring ol' pool party post…

But with 24-hour social media, you can post as much of whatever nonsense that you like without worrying about it sticking around forever. With apps like Instagram (Instagram Stories) you can even save an entire 24-hours of temporary posts in a video format so you can relive your Canada 150 over and over again!

How do you celebrate Canada Day?

Are you a big fan of snapping photos and a big street fair, or do you prefer to spend some time with the family around the BBQ? Are you someone who likes to go out into the crowds to catch the fireworks, or would you rather spend a lazy day at the beach having drinks and snapping Canada Day selfies with pals?

Let us know how you plan to celebrate and shoot your Canada Day in the comments below (and a very happy Canada Day to you!)

How to use Halide to take phenomenal photos

Halide is the latest, greatest third-party camera app to hit the iPhone – here's how you can use it to take some breathtaking photos!

If you're someone who loves snapping pictures with your iPhone, then you've probably heard of Halide, a brand new, state-of-the-art iPhone camera app that was designed by an ex-Twitter engineer and former Apple employee (so you know it's gotta be good!).

The app essentially turns your iPhone into a mini sort of DSLR camera, giving users full control of focus, RAW image capture, and so, so much more.

Craig Grannell, Stuff:

Halide wants to marry the elegance Apple is known for with a more thoughtful kind of iPhone photography… It therefore follows that there are no modes in Halide. There's no HDR, no video, and no square cropping for Instagram. (There's also no burst shot mode nor a timer, which may be a couple of steps too far for some photographers.) What you instead get is a camera that encourages you to think a little more about whatever you're shooting.

Manual focus is a must

If you've ever shot with a DSLR camera before, then you know how important manual focus can be. Depending on autofocus for tricky little specifics and details is kind of like flying blind, while manual focus allows you full control over the subject you're shooting – and more importantly which parts of the subject are shown clearly on camera.

With the manual focus feature from Halide, you can effortlessly use your iPhone to focus and pick up smaller details and focus points in the photo you're snapping!

Halide also takes it one step further with a sort of "focus indicator" feature where red lines will outline what you're trying to take a picture of and will fade/adjust depending on whether you're in focus or not. It's super helpful if what you're trying to capture is incredibly small and precise!

BONUS: Pair your favorite mobile macro lens with Halide, start experimenting, and I can guarantee your macro shots will rival those of a professional photographer!

This photo is RAW!

You've probably heard of people shooting RAW photos. If you're not sure what it means, here's a great description from Photography Concentrate:

First off, what is RAW? RAW is a file format that captures all image data recorded by the sensor when you take a photo. When shooting in a format like JPEG image information is compressed and lost. Because no information is compressed with RAW you're able to produce higher quality images, as well as correct problem images that would be unrecoverable if shot in the JPEG format. [sic]

Halide allows users to effortlessly shoot and edit in a RAW photo format. This means a couple of things, including that if you're shooting RAW images all the time, you're going to run out of room a lot quicker than if you were just shooting compressed images.

It also means that the photos you shoot through Halide will be clearer, sharper, and easier to edit/markup than most other pictures you'll take through other third-party camera apps.

Play with the ISO

When it comes to digital photography, ISO measures the sensitivity of the image sensor AKA how much light is flooding your photographs.

With a DSLR camera, you can easily adjust and get specific with ISO settings, but typically with an iPhone camera app, you're SOL – that is, until Halide appeared on the mobile photography scene!

Halide is great because you can play with the ISO and the brightness of your mobile photography with just a few easy swipes, so whether you're capturing the beauty of a dramatic sunset or want to adjust the shadows for the perfect selfie in a nightclub with friends, then Halide's got your back!

White balance your life!

White balancing and adjustments are typically reserved for filmmaking and professional DSLR-level photography, but to quote Stuff, Halide "encourages you to think a little more about whatever you're shooting", which is why the white balancing features exist!

When you use white balance with your photography, you eliminate the need for time-consuming editing afterwards.

White balancing can get rid of any ugly yellow tones or discolored accents in a photo, and with Halide, you can adjust the white balance for an especially sunny day, more of a cloudy day, a day with low light, or a day that's a bit brighter. You can also just the auto white balance option.

Selfie game strong

While there are plenty of camera features that only work with your front-facing camera (AHEMPORTRAITMODEFORSELFIESAHEMMMM), Halide understands that taking a stellar selfie with your third-party camera app is a must.

Using Halide, you can effortlessly adjust white balance, ISO, exposure, the grid, and so much more on your selfies, guaranteeing that they look top-notch every single time!

The only thing you can't do in selfie mode with Halide is manual focus, so if you're looking to snap a super clear selfie of your intricate makeup or the freckles on your nose, you're pretty much out of luck.

The user manual is your BFF

Sometimes with apps like this that are laid out in a very minimal, simple way, it gets insanely confusing and complicated to know what each and every little icon does.

Halide is fantastic because in the settings menu, in the upper right corner, there's an option to delve into the User Manual. While it may not seem like a big deal to some, the animation on the manual actually makes you feel like you're flipping pages in an actual instruction booklet!

With this manual, you can figure out how to adjust exposure, how to access menus, and so, so much more; although, I do wish it would go into more detail about what each feature does for people who aren't as confident with formal camera technology and terminology.

What do you think of Halide?

Are you a big fan of playing around with third-party camera apps like Halide to snap your iPhone photography, or would you rather just stick to the standard Camera app?

If you could set Halide to be your standard camera app that you could easily swipe to, would that encourage you to use it more?

Let us know what you think in the comments below!

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