Author Archives: Rojan Navah

Peer Review #3

My final peer review is here! For the final one, I had the pleasure of exploring Jolene’s enchanting website:Mama Jo’s Family!

Mama Jo's Website HomePage
Mama Jo's Website HomePage

Introduction and first impression 

 Upon landing on her site, the first thing that caught my attention was the introductory paragraph, which provided a welcoming and family-oriented vibe. Jolene’s website is informative and engaging, with her about page particularly noteworthy. I was drawn to her mention of her First Nation heritage and culture, which reminded me of Suler’s article’s Personal and Cultural Values section on “the online disinhibition effect”. This section emphasizes the impact of our personal and cultural values on our online interactions and how we perceive ourselves, which is an important consideration when navigating online relationships with people from different cultures.

One suggestion for Jolene’s blog is to include a photograph of her family on the homepage and about page. Since Jolene introduces her sons and husband by name and age, it would be beneficial to see and recognize their faces. This would make it easier for her audience to follow their stories and create a more engaging experience.

Jo Mama's About page
Mama Jo's About Page

Audience and SEO

Referring to Campbell’s article “A personal cyberinfrastructure,” Jalone has demonstrated her cyberinfrastructure to her audiences. By exploring her blog content and photos, the target audience for Jolene Auger’s blog mainly consists of caring and compassionate parents in their 30s-50s who lead a busy and family-oriented lifestyle and juggle multiple responsibilities balancing work and family life. I believe Jolene’s sharing of her moments and experiences perfectly resonates with their interests, goals, and needs. 

Although I’m not sure whether Jolene plans to use her blog for marketing and monetizing, I still recommend that she include ways to engage with her audience, such as a contact page, social media sharing buttons, adding her email, or a comment section below her posts if she decides to separate her posts from category pages. This would allow her to connect with her audience and interact with them.

Given that her audience is likely to relate to Jolene’s experiences, they may provide valuable feedback and suggestions for her blog posts and the concerns she has discussed. It would also be helpful for her to incorporate SEO strategies such as embedding videos from YouTube, adding appropriate keywords to her blog posts, and including related hyperlinks to increase credibility and engagement with her content.

As Hollingsworth mentions in “15 Reasons Why Your Business Needs SEO,” good SEO means good user experience, increasing the likelihood that more people will hear Jolene’s message. Implementing these strategies could help Jolene grow her audience and increase engagement with her content.


Jolene’s blog topics are incredibly engaging, and I appreciate that they are pure and relevant to her daily routine. Parents with similar concerns to Jolene’s will also find her blog valuable. Like Basu’s digital gardens, Jolene’s blog truly resonates with her inner voice, which is reflected in her comfortable writing style.

However, her content’s grammatical and punctuation errors could be easily corrected using AI grammar checkers like Grammarly. Overall, Jolene’s blog is an excellent resource that offers her audience a genuine and comforting perspective.

Design decisions 

As Pagé suggested, having a visual hierarchy is one of the critical factors in website design. Using the same font sizes for headings and subheadings may decrease the visual hierarchy. I appreciate the font sizes and typeface choice, which are well-chosen and readable.

In order to meet “The Accessible Publishing Learning Network (APLN)” guidelines for accessibility on her website, I highly recommend incorporating plugins that provide multiple accessibility options for different disabilities, as well as a dark/bright mode feature for improved vision during the day or at night.I am sharing my thoughts on the posts section of the menu bar. When I first clicked on it, I assumed it was a category page, and I thought I would be directed to its specific page by clicking on each process post. However, I later realized that no separate pages were intended for each process post.

To enhance the consistency and accessibility of the content and improve the user experience, I highly recommend creating separate pages for each process post. This will allow each post to be self-contained, organized, and more accessible for readers to navigate. Additionally, as Suzanne and Mickey suggested, adding images and bibliography to each process post would be a great way to improve the overall quality of the content. However, having numerous photos and bibliographies on a category page can be overwhelming and distracting for readers, so creating separate pages is the best option.

I also want to note that the lack of white space on a category page, as highlighted by the Pagé presentation, is another consideration. Creating separate pages for each process post allows her to utilize white space more effectively and create a cleaner, more visually appealing layout for her readers.

Mama Jo's Posts Page
Mama Jo's Posts Page

I suggest applying the same recommendations for the assignments section as well. Additionally, for the mini assignments, I suggest providing short descriptions for some assignments that require extra information to improve user engagement, such as telling a story through media. Finally, I found the photos section lovely and exciting, and I appreciate Jolene’s family’s warm, sweet, and intimate vibe. I hope all the good vibes in the universe protect their energy! Thank you, Jolene, for sharing your moments with us!

Regarding aesthetics and design decisions, I suggest adding more storytelling and organization to the pictures from the audience’s perspective seeking family moments and stories. For example, adding dates under the photos and sorting them based on dates or dividing them into separate content posts, each with a unique story and related images. Another recommendation is to add a date for each post.

I recommend using a transparent logo for the homepage because it appears too large for its purpose and is challenging to recognize as a logo rather than a picture.

I suggest reconsidering the color theme. Pure black (RGB 0) can be hard on the eyes, and it may be beneficial to incorporate color principles discussed in Mauve’s presentation. On the other hand, given the family-oriented and joyful mood of the blog, a dark theme might not be the best decision, especially considering the many pictures with white backgrounds on the website. Additionally, the target audience is likely Gen X, who prefer bright themes over dark themes, which are more prevalent among Gen Z (Web flow, 2019).

I also appreciate the hyperlinks for referring to reading materials in the process posts, making it easier for readers to access the sources. However, I recommend using high-quality images instead of some outsourced images and mentioning the source of the photos due to copyright matters.

Mama Jo's Menu Bar
Mama Jo's Menu Bar

Menu Bar 

The navigation bar is well-organized and easy to navigate. However, I found one aspect of it to be slightly unclear. Instead of using the word “posts,” it would be more helpful to use the term “process post” since it pertains to all posts related to a specific process in WP terminology. It’s worth noting that the navigation bar is solely used for process posts.

Additionally, the peer review section does not currently have any peer reviews available. Therefore, hiding this section might be more effective until content is added temporarily. At this point, it can be made public.

Final words 

I believe Jolene’s blog has much potential to gain popularity among parents and even younger generations like myself. I’m particularly drawn to the sincerity and authenticity of her cyberinfrastructure, which is somewhat rare among people of my age group.

Upon exploring her blog, I found that it offers a unique perspective on topics related to motherhood and parenting. Her writing style is engaging and relatable, making it easy for readers to connect with her and her experiences. However, what sets her blog apart is the genuine and honest approach she takes toward her content.

Overall, her blog has the potential to become a go-to resource for mothers and parents who are seeking inspiration and a sense of community. Her commitment to authenticity and openness is commendable, and I look forward to seeing how her blog evolves and grows.


Webflow. (2019, March 6). Generational marketing: How to use color to appeal to different age groups. Webflow Blog. Retrieved March 26, 2023, from

Hollingsworth, S. (2021, August 9). 15 reasons why your business absolutely needs seo. Search Engine Journal. Retrieved March 26, 2023, from 

Campbell, G. (2009, September). A personal cyberinfrastructure. EDUCAUSE Review, 44(5), 58-59

Basu, T. (2020, September 3). Digital Gardens let you cultivate your own little bit of the internet. MIT Technology Review. Retrieved March 26, 2023, from

Page, M. (2023). Web Design and Type on Screens [PowerPoint Slides]. Department of Publishing, Simon Fraser University.

Website accessibility archives. APLN. (n.d.). Retrieved March 27, 2023, from 

Suler, J. (2004). Psychology of cyberspace – the online disinhibition effect. Retrieved March 27, 2023, from 

Process Post #9

campaign creators yktK2qaiVHI unsplash
Photo Credit: Unsplash

Hello everyone! This week I’ve been busy trying to improve my website by analyzing its performance and figuring out new ideas that could help make it even better. 

In this lecture, I was fortunate enough to attend a talk given by Trevor Battye from Clevers Media, who shared his insights on monetization and ways to make money from your audience. He stressed that it’s important to identify the needs of your audience and to be unique in your niche when starting a business. One key takeaway for me was that your first business might not be the most profitable one, but it’s a valuable learning experience that can set you up for success in future endeavours.


Trevor also mentioned that starting a business when you’re young can be advantageous because you tend to be more determined and willing to take risks, and people are more compassionate and are generally more forgiving of mistakes. I found this encouraging, as I tend to be a bit of a perfectionist, and that’s held me back from starting my own business or even just creating my own public social media pag e. But As a  part of Rojan’s Road to Roj transformation journey, I recently shifted my mindset and focused on continuous improvement.


One thing that really resonated with me was Trevor’s experiences with selling candles. As someone who wants to get a publishing minor, I’m eager to learn more about these kinds of experiences in this field by taking the PUB 456. Overall, it was an inspiring and informative talk that left me feeling motivated to keep pushing forward with my own projects.

As a content creator for my blog, I’ve become increasingly aware of the digital breadcrumbs I leave behind daily, from checking the weather on my phone in the morning to using my contactless card to buy coffee, various apps and technologies record and track every action I take.

But what does this mean for my readers and me? Who has access to this information, and how can it be used? These are essential questions to consider as we navigate the world of big data.

According to Dr. Elisa Oreglia, a lecturer in Global Digital Cultures, a digital trail is a trace that we leave behind through technology. This can include our location information, app usage, and internet searches.


Digital Footprint
Photo Credit: Unsplash

But where does all this information go? Dr. Oreglia in “Digital breadcrumbs” explains that it’s stored in various places, from our mobile phone network to GPS satellites and data centers scattered worldwide. And while there are laws and processes in place to protect our digital privacy, it’s essential to be aware of what data we’re sharing and who we’re sharing it with. For example, when I search for my name on Google, I still see some very old profile pictures. Although I don’t want them to be public anymore, I cannot delete them because I can no longer access those accounts. 


I believe I am responsible for informing my readers about the digital breadcrumbs they may be leaving behind, especially in this digital age where companies like Amazon are trying their best to make every action digital and collect every single piece of data from users.


 Also, Suzanne Norman’s experience in “Trying not to drop breadcrumbs in Amazon’s store” when visiting Amazon’s first physical store was mind-provoking, as she could not purchase a physical book with cash, which is scary for me as a reader as well. By sharing this information, we can all become more mindful of our digital footprint and take steps to protect our privacy online. So, the next time you check your phone or purchase with your card, remember that your actions leave a trail of data behind you. Stay informed and stay mindful.


Besides, this week I made some changes to my design website based on the peer reviews I have received. I was glad that both of my peers were engaged with the overall design decisions, the flow of my content, and the consistency of my website for my audience. Both mentioned that my logo might not represent the intention behind my overall blog content and the other homepage elements. At that time, I had not yet posted my content about the transformative miracle of meditation and yoga on my journey and the following posts on topics such as my “ACL surgery” and “bypassing materialism“, which these practices have had a huge impact on my life, bringing me a new sense of balance and helping me to form this new perspective.


On this blog, by sharing the stories of each step of my transformation journey, I want to show the balance I have gradually gained through all these stages, wether in physical, mental or social stage. Thus, the Lotus pose is a powerful symbol of the balance between mind, body, and spirit (Luthra, 2021) and this is the reason I chose it as my logo 😉


Also, to make my header image more balanced with the overall homepage aesthetics, I updated the images of the featured homepage slider. I made it consistent with my header image. As Cass mentioned in her peer review # 2 I also added more pictures to my content posts and process posts to make them more engaging. I also shortened my paragraphs, as Ashley mentioned in her peer review #1, while reducing the white space in each post. I am grateful for the constructive peer reviews I have received so far.


Affeldt, C. (2023, March 9). Peer Review Number Two. Completely Cass.

Chia, A. (2023, February 7). Peer Review #1: Exploring Rojan’s Road to Roj. Two AM Thoughts.

Luthra, A. (2021, October 30). Padmasana Benefits. Be Body Wise.

Norman, S. (2016, March 7). Trying not to drop breadcrumbs in Amazon’s store. Publishing | Graduate and Undergraduate Studies – Simon Fraser University. Retrieved March 25, 2023, from

Pod Academy. (2015, September 28). Digital Breadcrumbs: Our Data Trail.

Transformation #9

From Materialism to Mindfulness: My Transformation Journey towards Paying for Experience 

This leg of my journey towards transformation is particularly special to me because of the revolutionary changes it has brought deep within me. It’s the culmination of all the past steps that I have taken to get here, and that’s why I hold this stage of my journey in high regard. It has helped shape me into a better version of myself. In my younger days, I was notorious for spending all my earnings on expensive brands and fashion labels. I was a shopaholic, believing that material possessions would bring me contentment and happiness. But as I progressed on my transformation journey, I realized that investing in materialism no longer gave me the satisfaction I sought. I wanted to explore new experiences and invest my money in creating memorable moments. While I still indulge in branded products, I’m way more mindful of my choices now. My focus is on creating experiences and memories that are worth cherishing!


Changing Mindset from Materialism to Mindfulness

My journey towards paying for experience started with a simple shift in my mindset. I began questioning the value of material possessions and their effect on my life. I realized that the pursuit of materialism only left me feeling empty and unfulfilled, and I wanted something more meaningful.

I started reading books and articles about minimalism, mindfulness, and the benefits of investing in experiences. I learned that adventures bring us more happiness than material possessions, creating lasting memories we can cherish forever.


The Negative Effects of Materialism on Our Lives

Materialism can negatively affect our lives, including financial stress, social pressure, and environmental damage. Moreover, when focusing on material possessions, we often overlook the value of experiences and relationships, leading to a shallow and unfulfilling life.

Moreover, chasing the latest trends and designer labels can be expensive, leaving us in financial instability. We also contribute to environmental damage by supporting fast fashion and other unsustainable industries.


The Benefits of Investing in Experiences

Investing in experiences, on the other hand, can bring us many benefits, including personal growth, connection with others, and a sense of fulfillment. In addition, experiences create lasting memories that we can cherish for a lifetime and help us grow and learn new things.

Moreover, experiences can be shared with others, creating deep and meaningful connections that enrich our lives. Whether it’s a weekend getaway with friends or a solo adventure to a new country, experiences bring us closer to others and ourselves.


Solo Travel: A Life-Changing Experience

One of the most life-changing experiences I mentioned in detail in my content post #4 was travelling solo to Qeshm Island. It was a scary thought at first, but I knew deep down that I needed to step out of my comfort zone and explore the world on my terms.

Travelling solo allowed me to discover new cultures, meet new people, and learn more about myself. It taught me to be independent, adaptable, and open-minded, creating lasting memories I will cherish forever.


Discovering Yoga and Meditation: A New Way of Living

In my journey towards paying for experiences instead of material things, I found that practicing yoga and meditation-as I have discussed earlier in my last content post-was, was a key factor in my mindset transformation. Instead of constantly seeking material possessions, I learned to appreciate the present moment and focus on my well-being. Yoga and meditation allowed me to slow down, be more mindful, and connect with myself deeper. As a result, I could find greater fulfillment and satisfaction by prioritizing experiences that enriched my life rather than accumulating more possessions. This shift towards mindfulness and a more minimalist lifestyle have transformed how I live and see the world around me.



Balancing Materialism and Mindfulness: Tips for a Conscious Lifestyle


Living a conscious lifestyle means finding a balance between materialism and mindfulness. It’s about investing in experiences that bring us joy and fulfillment while being mindful of our environmental and societal impact.

Some tips that have helped me in my journey toward paying for experience are:

  • Practicing gratitude: Expressing gratitude for what we have can help us shift our focus from material possessions to experiences and relationships.
  • Setting priorities: Prioritizing experiences that align with our values and goals can help us invest our money wisely and create meaningful memories.
  • Supporting sustainable and local brands: Choosing to support brands that prioritize sustainability and ethical practices can help us minimize our impact on the environment and society. For instance, nowadays, I invest much of my money in Iranian designers’ beautiful and unique designs instead of investing in the worthless fast fashion industry.
  • Being present: Being present in the moment can help us appreciate the beauty of the experience and create lasting memories.

Creating Meaningful Memories: How to Invest in Experiences


Experiences are a great way to create meaningful memories that last a lifetime. Investing in experiences can also help us connect with ourselves and the world. Here are some tips for investing in experiences:

Invest in yourself: Investing in activities that promote self-discovery, such as sports, yoga, or art classes, can help us connect with ourselves and create a deeper understanding of who we are.

Engage with nature: Connecting with nature can be a powerful experience that helps us appreciate the beauty of the natural world and our place within it.

Exploring new destinations: Exploring new places and cultures can help us appreciate the beauty of life, broaden our horizons, and create meaningful memories.

Trying new foods: Exploring new cuisines and local dishes can be a fun and delicious way to invest in experiences, especially in lovely Vancity!, with its diverse culinary scene, offering plenty of unique words gathered from all around.

Embracing a Mindful Lifestyle


In conclusion, my transformation journey towards paying for experience has been a life-changing experience. It taught me the value of investing in ventures and helped me balance materialism and mindfulness.

Living a conscious lifestyle means being mindful of our impact on the environment and society while investing in experiences that bring us joy and fulfillment. It’s about creating meaningful memories and cherishing the present moment.

I encourage everyone to embrace a mindful lifestyle and invest in experiences that bring joy and fulfillment. Whether travelling solo, practicing yoga and meditation, or trying a new hobby, investing in ventures can bring us closer to ourselves and others, creating lasting memories we will cherish forever. So GIVE IT A TRY!!!!!!

Mini Assignment #4

First Remix
Second Remix

Remixing is a popular technique in the world of art that involves taking existing works and combining, manipulating, and reimagining them to create something new. In this mini-assignment, I remixed two photos to convey a powerful message about pursuing one’s true passion and finding oneself through art. 


This diptych (artwork consisting of two pieces or panels) that I have created depicts the pressure of external forces to study and pursue coding in the present and the fulfillment of becoming a painter in the future. 

The first remix shows the subject in a state of sadness and suppression, with binary codes covering her and the background. A hand from the outside writes the codes on her face, indicating a lack of control over her life. The background is blurred and gray, and the colour theme is fantastic. To create this photo, I intentionally used two different textures for handwritten and digital binary codes. This emphasized the digital essence of coding and the force of external pressure.

 Additionally, I brought the hand closer to her face and I changed the angle of her lips to convey my intentions more appropriately. 

In contrast, the second remix shows the subject happy and in control, painting her face with brushes in her hand. The background is light and colourful, and the colour theme is warm. The choice of colours on the subject’s face painting in the second photo is intentional, with each colour having a different meaning related to happiness, settlement, and positivity. The contrast between the two images intends to convey the idea that the subject controls her life in the second photo. This is in comparison to being controlled by external forces in the first. The colours, subject position, facial expressions, clothing, and other visual elements were carefully chosen to convey this message.


Both images used in this diptych were taken by me and edited using Adobe Illustrator. Also, the context of these remixed photos also resonates with the content of my blog, which focuses on self-growth, empowerment, and motivation. Through my blog, I strive to inspire and motivate my readers to pursue their passions and find happiness and fulfillment.


All in all, I believe using art as a means of expression and communication, I aim to convey powerful messages that resonate with my readers and inspire them to make positive changes in their lives. In addition, by remixing existing works and combining them in unique ways, I can create new messages that have a powerful impact on my audience.


Fighting for Information Freedom: The Struggle Against Censorship and Disinformation caused by the government of Iran

In recent years, social media platforms have become ubiquitous in our daily lives and an increasingly popular source of news and information. However, spreading false news through these platforms has raised significant concerns about the impact of disinformation and misinformation on public discourse.

This essay examines the role of censorship and social media manipulation by the Iranian government as the primary cause of spreading disinformation and misinformation on social media platforms in Iran. Using Iran as a case study, it explores the impact of these tactics on political events and on the general public. The essay will begin by discussing the impact of the Islamic Republic of Iran’s censorship and the control of internet and social media on democracy, freedom, and access to information in the country. It will then delve into the use of social media manipulation and disinformation by the Iranian government and the role of social media influencers in spreading false news.

Iran's Internet and Social Media Censorship: Undermining Democracy, Freedom, and Access to Information

censorship in Iran featured image

Iran’s government systematically censors and controls information, undermining democracy and freedom. This control includes occasional internet shutdown, blocking social media, spreading fake news, and targeting independent journalists and protesters. As a result, Iranians have turned to VPN services, but censorship and regulation continue to impair freedom of content creation and internet access.

Iran has been in the grips of hard-line authoritarian governance for many years. As a result, its citizens face pervasive restrictions on their information access, as news outlets and social media platforms, such as Facebook and Twitter, are routinely blocked to repress any potential dissent (Frankel S., 2018). These restrictions are all part of an effort by the extremist regime to monopolize public discourse, thereby alienating its citizens from engaging with alternative opinions or views that oppose those held at the government level (Khalaji, 2022). Furthermore, journalists who strive for truth-telling are often met with unfair trials before revolutionary courts that sentence them harshly due to their work against the government (Reporters Without Borders, n.d.). 

Censorship, control over information, and the spread of fake news in the media by the Islamic Republic Government in Iran extend beyond this context. In addition to broadcasting forced televised ‘confessions’ of dissidents, the Iranian regime has started to force individuals who publish anti-regime content on their social media accounts to post dictated statements on their profiles (Sinaee, 2023). This systematic abuse is contributing to an environment where democracy and freedom have become secondary concepts in favour of censorship, which threatens human rights and freedom of speech.

In 2011, Iran created a “cyber police” unit infamous for detaining and torturing bloggers. In addition, the Iranian government’s strict control over the internet and social media has made it difficult for social media content creators and independent journalists to accurately report on protests and on the regime’s violent crackdown (University of Exeter, 2022). During protests, the regime targets independent journalists, and protesters have been unable to voice their dissent, coordinate their activities, or share their experiences with the Islamic Republic Guard Corps (IRGC) and other regime forces due to internet blackouts (Demchuk, K, 2020). Also, in 2019, spreading fake news in social media about internal protests labelled as “separatist activities” was seen as an attempt by the regime to destroy evolving unity and solidarity among protestors (University of Exeter, 2022).

As a response, Iranians have increasingly turned to VPN services, which encrypt and redirect traffic to a remote server overseas, enabling them to reconnect to restricted websites and social media platforms (Browne, R, 2022). In Iran, landlines are tapped, and mobile data is severely restricted. In addition, all media are regularly monitored by a government hostile to political dissidents. Nevertheless, social media is a powerful tool for connecting with fellow citizens and discovering what is happening beyond the Islamic Republic’s state-controlled media (Azar, 2022). However, censorship and restrictive regulations have had far-reaching effects in obstructing this goal due to their impact on filtering published content and on internet access.

Iranian Government's Use of Social Media for Manipulation and Spreading Disinformation, and the Role of Influencers in Its Spread

The Islamic Republic of Iran leverages social media manipulation to spread disinformation and to maintain its survival (Azar, 2022). According to Lipschultz, social media content can be manipulated through public relations, advertising, and marketing, ranging from subtle persuasion to manipulative propaganda. In addition, the governmental use of social media for political communication has also led to the restriction of journalist’s professionalism and the creation of new and complex roles, challenging the trustworthiness of news (Lipschultz, 2022). Moreover, trolls manipulating public opinion using short videos, memes, and deep fakes that alter the facts can spread misinformation and disinformation about health and politics, resulting in long-term psychological effects (Lipschultz, 2022). This is similar to how the Islamic Republic of Iran controls social media platforms in the country to spread false narratives.

Since foreign journalists may not be able to enter Iran safely to report on the protests, Western audiences and the diaspora abroad must rely on unverified social media posts, first-hand accounts and the monopolistic Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB) (Azar, 2022). Misinformation about Iran’s political unrest is not limited to this story; some articles cite Iranian state-controlled media and spread false narratives with unclear origins (Azar, 2022).

As an increasingly pervasive phenomenon, social media manipulation has profoundly impacted political discourse and journalistic credibility. Unfortunately, the Islamic Republic of Iran (IRI) is no stranger to this trend. In order to maintain its survival, the IRI utilizes social media manipulation to spread disinformation, which has significantly impacted political discourse and journalistic integrity (Azar, 2022Lipschultz, 2022). Besides, the IRI’s control of social media platforms in Iran has made it difficult for foreign journalists to report on political protests, leaving Western audiences and the diaspora abroad to rely on unverified social media posts and Iranian state-controlled media (Azar, 2022).

Instances of fake social media accounts created by the Islamic Republic of Iran (IRI) to manipulate public opinion on social media discussions, especially Twitter, and spread the news in favour of its perspective are commonly known as “cyber-armies” (Doe, 2022). These cyber armies, often attributed to jailed critics of the Islamic Republic, use various strategies to manipulate social media and to silence dissidents (Kermani, 2023). According to Kermani, these strategies include the use of fake accounts, bots, and trolls. This manipulation can make it challenging for the general public to verify content, especially during chaotic situations on social media platforms where coordinated inauthentic activity is prohibited. The creation of fake accounts to promote certain narratives is a hallmark of disinformation and misinformation actors (Lawati & Ebrahim, 2022).

In this case, the harm comes when influential public figures, such as celebrities, influencers or educators, retweet the false narratives of the cyber-armies (Harff et al., 2022). With social media making it possible to provide and distribute news online rapidly and efficiently, a large amount of disinformation has been spread online, including fake news (Shu et al., 2017), which is intentional false information produced online for financial or political gain. Accordingly, influencers on social media platforms, such as Instagram, can spread misinformation and impact perceptions of news and information since they are trustworthy among their followers and are considered ordinary individuals (Harff et al., 2022).

Furthermore, false news spreads widely through social media and can have grave consequences for individuals and society (Shu et al., 2017), especially for the younger generation (Harff et al., 2022). In addition, this generation is more likely to use social media as their primary source of news and information, making them more susceptible to misinformation and disinformation (Harff et al., 2022). Thus, since influencers can substantially influence the country’s younger generation due to their relatability factors, it is crucial to monitor and regulate the spread of false information online (Harff et al., 2022).

However, despite the manipulative tactics used by the IRI, Iranian users have demonstrated a keen ability to identify misleading hashtags and fake news, urging others not to be duped by the cyber army (Kermani, 2022). This fact demonstrates the power of public awareness and vigilance in combatting disinformation and misinformation on social media platforms.

Accordingly, addressing social media manipulation and disinformation is essential to ensure the integrity of political discourse, journalism, and public trust. 


As social media continues to grow in prevalence, it has become clear that false news and disinformation are dramatically impacting public discourse. With this ever-growing presence of information on platforms like Facebook and Twitter, there is an increased need for individuals who create content to understand their responsibility. This is because they entered a unrestrained digital age of fake news with such intense political implications. As cited, the Iranian government’s internet censorship is a powerful illustration of the consequences that restricting access to information can have on democracy, freedom and knowledge. This political interference has had an extensive impact on public life and content publishing, effectively silencing independent journalists, content creators, and activists who wish to freely express their personal opinions and experiences regarding the IRI on social media.

Thus, to ensure democratic processes are protected, we must oppose such limiting operations focusing on both social media manipulation and disinformation circulation prevention, particularly encouraging influencers to be aware when fact-checking content they share while preventing false narratives from gaining traction with viewers. 




Azar, T. (2022, November 17). A false post on Iran’s protests went viral. social media can’t get it wrong again. The Guardian. Retrieved March 13, 2023, from

Browne, R. (2022, October 7). VPN use skyrockets in Iran as citizens navigate internet    censorship under Tehran’s crackdown. CNBC. Retrieved March 13, 2023, from   

Demchuk, K. (2020, February 12). Iranian digital influence efforts: Guerrilla Broadcasting for the twenty-first century. Atlantic Council. Retrieved March 13, 2023, from

Doe, J. (2022, December 24). Iran regime backers use fake Twitter account to support case against jailed actress. IranWire. Retrieved March 13, 2023, from

Frenkel, S. (2018, January 3). Iranian authorities block access to social media tools. The NewYork Times. Retrieved March 13, 2023, from

Harff, D., Bollen, C., & Schmuck, D. (2022). Responses to social media influencers’ misinformation about COVID-19: A pre-registered multiple-exposure experiment. Media Psychology, 25(6), 831–850.

Khalaji, M. (2022, October 6). Social Media in Iran’s protests: A new public sphere? The Washington Institute. Retrieved March 13, 2023, from

Kermani, H. (2023). #MahsaAmini: Iranian twitter activism in times of computational propaganda. Social Movement Studies, 1–11.

Lawati, A. A., & Ebrahim, N. (2022, October 5). The battle of narratives on Iran is being fought on social media. CNN. Retrieved March 13, 2023, from

Lipschultz, J. (2022). Introduction to global political and social media communication. Social Media and Political Communication, 1–22.

Reporters Without Boarders. (n.d.). Iran. Retrieved March 13, 2023, from  

  Shu, K., Wang, S., Tang, J., Zafarani, R., & Liu, H. (2017). User Identity Linkage across Online Social Networks. SIGKDD Explorations, 18(2), 5–17.

Sinaee, M. (2023, February 24). Iran adopts a new tactic – ‘forced statements’ on social media. Iran International. Retrieved March 14, 2023, from  

University of Exeter. (2022, November 09).  Home page news – Iranian regime “doubling down”  on media manipulation in response to recent protests, analysis shows – University of Exeter. Retrieved March 13, 2023, from  




Transformation #8-From Injury to Inspiration

From Injury to Inspiration: How My ACL Surgery Turned into a Self-Growth Journey


As an avid sports enthusiast, I never imagined that my passion for skiing would one day lead me to the operating room. It was winter 2021, and I was exploring the Darbandsar ski resort in Tehran, Iran. I had not slept for more than two hours the night before due to excitement, and the adrenaline rush of skiing kept me going. But fate had other plans for me…

While looking for my AirPods in the snow, my snowboard slipped, and I fell awkwardly, feeling a sharp pain in my left knee…I could not even stand up, let alone walk. I knew something was wrong. After being transported to the hospital, I was devastated to learn that I had torn my ACL. It was a devastating blow, and I was worried about how it would impact my life!



How Losing My ACL Affected My Life


As someone who was addicted to sports and exercised excessively, the news of my injury was a severe setback. The thought of not being able to engage in sports activities was unbearable. It was like losing a part of myself, and I felt lost and uncertain about the future. On the other hand, I had always been active, and the idea of being inactive for an extended period was daunting. It was a challenging time, and I struggled to accept my injury.



The Decision to Undergo Surgery and the Recovery Process


After much contemplation, I decided to undergo ACL surgery. The doctors informed me that surgery was the only way to continue engaging in sports activities. It was a difficult decision, but I knew it was right. The surgery went well, but the recovery process was long and gruelling.

I was bedridden for two weeks, and the pain was excruciating. Simple tasks like sitting up or walking to the bathroom felt like Herculean tasks. The road to recovery was challenging, and I sometimes felt like giving up. However, I was determined to come out of this experience more robust and resilient.



Coping with the Emotional and Physical Challenges During Recovery


The recovery process was not only physically challenging but also emotionally draining. I had to learn to accept my injury and find ways to cope with its emotional pain. I started reading books, listening to podcasts, and engaging in light yoga activities. This helped me understand my emotions better and regain control of my life.



Coping with the Emotional and Physical Challenges During Recovery


The recovery process was not only physically challenging but also emotionally draining. I had to learn to accept my injury and find ways to cope with its emotional pain. I started reading books, listening to podcasts, and engaging in light yoga activities. This helped me understand my emotions better and regain control of my life.


I also had to attend my physiotherapy sessions regularly to regain my strength and mobility. With each passing day, I felt more confident about achieving a full recovery. The journey was filled with setbacks and challenges, but it was an incredible self-growth experience.



How the Recovery Period Became a Journey of Self-Growth and Personal Development

The recovery period was a turning point in my life. What started as a physical journey to healing my knee turned into a journey of self-discovery and personal growth. I realized that I had been neglecting my mental and emotional health. This injury allowed me to focus on my overall well-being.

I started reading books on personal development and self-care, which gave me a new perspective on life. I learned about resilience, patience, and self-care, which helped me stay positive and motivated during recovery. I also started a gratitude journal, which helped me focus on the positive aspects of my life and appreciate the little things.




The Lessons I Learned About Resilience, Patience, and Self-Care During My Recovery


The recovery journey taught me many valuable lessons I would carry with me for the rest of my life. I learned the importance of resilience, patience, and self-care. I realized that setbacks are a part of life, and we must choose how we respond to them. I also learned that caring for our mental and emotional health is as important as our physical health.

I learned to be patient with myself and trust the process. Recovery is not a linear journey, and there were days when I felt like I needed to make progress. However, I learned to be kind to myself and celebrate small victories. I also learned the importance of self-care, such as getting enough rest, eating well, and taking time for myself.



Tips for Staying Positive and Motivated During a Long-Term Recovery Process


If you are in a long-term recovery process, it can be challenging to stay positive and motivated. However, there are several things you can do to help yourself stay on track.

Firstly, focus on the things that you can control. While you may not be able to control the recovery process, you can possess your mindset and attitude. Focus on the positive aspects of your life, and surround yourself with supportive people who encourage and motivate you.

Secondly, set small goals for yourself that are achievable. Finally, celebrate small victories along the way, and use them as motivation to keep going.

Thirdly, take care of your overall well-being. Get enough rest, eat well, and exercise within your limitations. Taking care of your physical health will also help improve your mental and emotional health.

 The Transformational Journey from Injury to Inspiration


In conclusion, my ACL surgery was a complex and challenging experience. Still, it also turned out to be a transformational journey. The recovery period taught me valuable resilience, patience, and self-care lessons. In addition, it allowed me to focus on my mental and emotional health and become a better version of myself.

If you find yourself in a similar situation, know that setbacks are a part of life, and it is up to us to choose how we respond to them. So, take care of yourself and focus on the positive aspects of your life. Remember, every setback is an opportunity for growth and transformation.

So, if you are in a challenging situation, take a deep breath, and keep moving forward. You never know what amazing things await you on the other side of the struggle.

Transformation #3 My Weight Loss Journey

Today is truly a monumental day. I’m here in Lotus Cafe, sipping an Americano and reflecting on how far my personal journey has come – at least that’s why I think they call it reflection! But there are plenty of other reasons to be celebrating today too; the one ringing loudest being Shervin’s (an Iraninan singer) incredible success with winning a Grammy for the Best social change song (Baraaye-for Woman Life Freedom movement in Iran) – such inspiring achievement! (More information here!) 

To prepare myself for this soul-searching session, nothing beats indulging into some good music from my favorite ‘work/study playlist’ (check out Spotify!). So, as you can tell by now, I am more than ready to dive deep into thinking about all these wonderful emotions associated with my transformation process… let’s get started!

How I lost 20kg of my weight, a critical point in Rojan's Road to Roj Journey

Well…How I lost 20kg of my weight is a story that starts with a lot of struggles and ends with a lot of success. It’s been a critical point in my Rojan’s Road to Roj Journey because it’s helped me to rebuild my confidence and recommit to my health goals. Today, I want to share how I did it in the hopes that it will inspire others who are struggling with their own weight loss journey.

September 2019-Vancouver
September 2021-Tehran

The story of my insecurities because of those some extra pounds

As a young teenager entering high school, I was never shy about my love of sweets and carefree abandon with which I enjoyed them. However, as many of my peers began to become more conscious of their bodies in the 15-16 age range – going on diets and choosing trends that fit their desired image – it hit me just how much weight these issues could have for boys or girls looking to make a good impression.


Naturally, this caused some insecurity when it came time for me personally to start dating; feeling like I wasn’t ‘good enough’ weighed heavily on mind as well! 

Yes true…I was carrying the feeling of ‘Inadequacy’ with myself for many years, I had felt like something was missing in my life- and not just a physical void. 


Fearing imperfection, refusing everyone before they could even reject me – this became an all too familiar pattern when it came to dating. My lack of self-confidence also seeped into other parts of my life; for instance, constantly buying clothes out of insecurity but then never feeling good enough to wear them or go the gym because I didn’t think that at 10-12 kg overweight there would be any point either way! 


When people told me I was beautiful inside and out (which is incredibly sweet!), rather than believing their compliment wholeheartedly as anyone deserves to do so now looking back with hindsight, I thought they were fooling me… 


I remember looking around at my friends who were nicely put together and thinking ‘why did they get to have true love while I was alone?’ On paper it should look like a perfect match—I had many dates, and some offers of long-term relationships! But no matter how amazing the proposal sounded in theory or if there truly seemed to be something special between us… deep down I couldn’t stop asking myself: Is something wrong with them that convinced them this could work out?! So instead of taking chances on any budding romances, I decided against getting too close.

I started losing weight because of this trigger point

Three years ago, that moment truly marked a huge turning point within me, where change became absolutely essential! I was in my home in Vancouver feeling unmotivated and unsure of myself. 


I had been lacking confidence for years and nothing seemed to be able to motivate me enough. That changed when a text from an unexpected source completely shifted the way I looked at things—it became clear that this pivotal moment could not go unaddressed any longer. 


It all started innocently enough with friendly greetings but as soon as he used an offensive term directed towards those who are overweight it felt like something inside of me broke entirely apart; suddenly all my fears came flooding out into focus and ignited flames within everything around me. 


This one message gave rise to such intensity that there could no more doubt: I HAD TO CHANGE! I knew that caring for my body and mind was necessary if I wanted to have the future that I dreamt of. 


And that’s exactly what got me started on this incredible journey of losing weight; that day marked the beginning of a struggle that sure enough made me stronger, healthier, happier, and above all more confident than ever before!

The challenges I faced, the right approach I took, and how I overcame them

I put away my fear of going to the gym because I wasn’t in shape, and I started to go to the gym with my best friend Amitis (Thank you Amy, you saved my life!) in her building. 

When I first started running, I couldn’t run even one minute, but I gradually increased the time and learned that consistency was more critical than speed. My goal was not instant change, but to change my whole lifestyle, so I began by eating clean and exercising with functional cardio. 


After months of hard work, I was finally starting to notice the physical transformation in myself and felt rejuvenated mentally. But then came the pandemic which forced me back home. Even though all restaurants were closed due to quarantine regulations, this ended up being a blessing as it gave me more time for my hobbies – like cooking! Who else remembers going crazy trying to bake bread during lockdown? That’s still one of my favorite memories from that era! 


After trying lots of different diets and exercise plans, I eventually found one that worked wonders for me – an Iranian trainer’s personal home plan. After committing to a regular routine following his advice, I was thrilled to see the result – 10kg lighter! It felt like such an accomplishment after all those months of hard work; it made it worth every minute spent sweating. 


My journey to a better lifestyle was often met with detours and dead ends. After 8 months of trial-and-error, I decided to take an unconventional approach–a 3-week smoothie diet! Though it lacked scientific support, the results were nothing short of miraculous. Through this experience I learned that being successful is about taking small steps on your path instead of just focusing solely on the result.

 I was feeling low after getting shot down, and that’s when I discovered Barry’s gym!

 It had a branch in Tehran which is where I first started to workout. It quickly became one of my favorite places – so much so that now there’s an even better version here in Vancouver! If you’re looking for an amazing place to get your sweat on wherever in the world you are!

 Then check out the link here and reserve your bedroom spot– trust me, this spot won’t disappoint!

Barry's Vancouver
Barry's Tehran

Following my weight-loss transformation, how my life has changed

My life has drastically changed for the better since I made a commitment to improve my physical and mental health. Initially it was challenging, but with each pound that I shed, setting new goals became easier than ever before! Not only could I move around more freely as time passed – even taking on tasks that had once seemed impossible-but something else began happening too. 


A confidence developed in me like never before which brought back an energy and vibrancy to my day; all thanks to making healthier decisions every single day! Looking back now at how far I’ve come is such an empowering experience-one of true gratitude towards everything this journey has done for me so far (and will do!)


When I stepped on the scale and saw that number staring back at me, my mind started to create a powerful story of negativity. Suddenly all other issues in life melted away – there was only one problem: this 10 kg extra weight. But something changed as soon as those hurtful words passed through my best friend’s toxic boyfriend’s lips – it made me realize how much value our minds hold when trying to make changes for ourselves! 


That moment opened up an opportunity where I could take control of self-doubt, anxiety and low confidence because from then onwards I had the power within myself to decide what kind of person I wanted to be; strong or weak? It began with shifting perspective about just 10 kg but spread into so many more aspects in terms of becoming happier and healthier individuals along broader lines such as mental health awakening too.


It took me a long time to realize that my insecurities and concerns about weight were only in my mind.


 For the longest time, I believed that if I lost 10 kg of extra weight then this would be the one-stop solution to all other problems in life! However, it was not until an unpleasant experience with someone close forced me into action did things begin to change. 


By choosing healthier lifestyle options such as regular exercise and healthy eating habits, I freed myself up mentally which allowed me to focus on areas like academic success, career goals or even networking – those aspects provide much more fulfilment than worrying over body image issues ever could have given!


And now when I’m writing this post, I am so grateful for the incredible mental transformation I have experienced over this long path. This journey has been so much more than just a physical transformation. 


I have learned to love myself whatever shape, size or weight that may be – and it is such an empowering feeling! Instead of judging people by their outward appearance, I now judge them for the beauty of their soul; for what lies inside rather than how they look on the outside.

 Life isn’t about those arbitrary numbers on scales anymore – unless our health is being harmed in any way – but instead we should enjoy each other’s rich personality and celebrate one another’s personal achievements along this beautiful ride called life!

For others who struggle with weight loss, here are some encouraging words and advice!

If there’s one piece of advice, I can offer those who are struggling on their weight loss journey, it would be to never give up – no matter how hard it gets. When I first started my journey, I felt completely overwhelmed and discouraged by the challenge ahead of me.


 But after sticking with it and challenging myself to stay motivated and persist through setbacks, I eventually reached my goal. Despite all the roadblocks in your way, don’t forget that you CAN achieve your goals if you work hard enough and put in the effort. Every time you feel like giving up, remind yourself why you made this choice in the first place and keep going – because you WANT it, and you ARE worth it!







Writing my story has been an incredibly emotional journey for me. I want to give hope and show that it is possible to make meaningful changes in your life with consistent effort, even if the path can be hard at times. My own weight loss success proves that small steps of dedication are key – don’t get discouraged! Allow yourself grace as you move forward on this journey – because any little bit counts and just look where believing in myself got me today: a healthy lifestyle full of joy! If anyone has specific questions or would like more guidance along the way, please feel free to reach out; connecting over our shared experiences may help us both achieve greatness together <3