Posts Tagged 'social media'

Push My Follow – Social Media Podcast

Push My Follow » Episode 1 is up
Hi everyone. The first episode of Push My Follow is up and ready. It took a little longer than normal to edit it, I had some audio issues to deal with, but be sure that all episodes after this one will get better.

We’re very excited about this show. We’re all very passionate about social media and where it’s going. Hopefully you’ll all enjoy listening to it as much as we did making it.

The topics?

Domain squatters
Twitter
Friendfeed and Socialthing
Wordpress 2.5
Oddfollow
Last.fm

This podcast was very conversational, and comfortable to listen to.  Felt like I was right there at a table with these folks.  The most controversial piece for me is the Oddfollow section.  Creepy is the word.

Check out the MP3 directly here.

I’ll be listening again and I recommend you give it at least a quick listen.

Peas on Friday?

peas on friday?

Geeks need love?

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Bitstrips – Online Cartoons in Color

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A review will be forthcoming!

St. Louis and Social Media

Social Media Club St. Louis held their first meeting. For me, it held some surprises.  Two of them stick out for me.  The main surprise was the attendance of several people working professionally with online media, including blogging. There were only a few of us in attendance that don’t make part of our living with our work online.  One gentleman even works for our local paper’s online segment.

My expectation that it would have been others with just an interest in social media or those that spend that have a small revenue stream from online activities. It’s exciting to see though the involvement in St. Louis of so many companies with a strong interest in things like blogs, and other social media and networking tools, such as Twitter. Mentioned in my earlier post though, very few of those in attendance were familiar with more than a couple of social media outlets personally.

This leads me to the second big surprise for this St. Louis crowd, what they considered their big social media and networking site. It wasn’t Facebook or MySpace that came out in front.  It wasn’t LinkedIn, though several people mentioned using it. StumbleUpon was the favorite online community.  Knowing St. Louis folks though, it shouldn’t be a surprise.

StumbleUpon is at first glance all about nominating links or stumbling them.  Essentially a StumbleUpon (SU) user can give a page a thumbs up that they like.  More visitors to that site that use SU can also vote it up.  This helps a page get noticed, because those that are added to the StumbleUpon database and get the most votes, will be ‘stumbled upon’ most often by StumbleUpon toolbar users.

So how does this factor in for St. Louis?  St. Louis is all about neighborhoods and tight net groups.  Behind SU’s toolbar and voting, it’s all about the small and interwoven community.  People can build personal blogs there, and even a sense of brand. The pages they recommend are seen by others in the groups they belong to on SU.  The social media types folks in St. Louis have really taken to that sense of close net community and sharing.  SU really provides a great way to share and focus that sharing upon your favorite sites about a place as well.  This helps create a whole group of users that really highlight blogs and websites of and about St. Louis.  A large part of that is a focus on the St. Louis local music scene.

Wrapping up the thoughts here, I really shouldn’t have been surprised about what I found at the Social Media Club gathering. It’s given me insight into what directions I should be moving in online and what tools people are finding the most community driven.

What about social media gurus and neophytes in your neighborhood? Do you know what online communities your neighbors use? Does it matter? Should you care?  Perhaps so if you really value your local area’s presence online.

Coloring in an online life

A forgotten joy

I’m sitting here and reminiscing about coloring books and crayons.  I used to love those as a kid; didn’t you?  The clean, colorless world of those pages, just waiting to be brought to life by us and our imaginations.

Yet those pages weren’t blank, nor were they unscripted. In contrast, each page told a story, or part of a story. The stories could be short and happy, longer and dramatic, and likewise the scenes simple or complex with many turns, and twists, and corners.  They all lacked one thing though, life.

Those stories weren’t truly told until we’d put crown to paper and told our version of the story.  Our sky could be purple, and our grass orange, while the cat was pink, and the water black, all just for us. We took those simple tools, the crayons, and breathed our life into those pages.  Each one uniquely our own. Each a mix of our experience and vision.

I’m coming to visualize the Internet and social media the same way, like a huge coloring book.  The pages are blogs, YouTube, Utterz, Facebook, and more.  What do we color them in with? Our own hands, voices, spirit, and experience. Our own vision.

YouTube is the story of sharing videos, and it’s only one coloring books worth though. It’s waiting out there for you and I to take our own pack of colors to it, and make reality  of our experiences and dreams.  We don’t have to have blue skies, and brown dogs when we flesh out a video, ours can be a world of the mildly different with funky colors, all the way to the supernatural, with ghosts and things that go bump in the night.

Facebook and Utterz are special coloring books if you will. In these, you can use all types of crayons, from video to voice, text and more.  There are many avenues of expression there.

So many choices, and so little time? Which book will you pick, and what color will your skies be?

Special thanks to Daniel Johnson Jr for dragging me into ooVoo to chat about blogging, podcamps and more.

Doing it wrong?

Is it possible to do it wrong? Social networking and social media that is. Is it possible that the users can do it wrong when using these tools? What constitutes wrong?That’s the key question here. There are grumblings among some of the more serious users about how others are ‘doing it wrong.’ The idea being incorrect and unintended uses of social networking tools, e.g. Twitter, Utterz, Facebook.Several types of complaints are listed in the wrong category. The most prominent complaint is that of intended use. In example, several users feel that the purpose of Twitter is what its original statement of intent was, to show a person’s status. Yes, the original idea was that a user and his friends would all join and could check the Twitter stream for the latest status of their friends. Twitter usage today can frequently be found to be used as a mircoblog and for multichannel communication. Users are no longer just blindly posting their status, such as Away, Out shopping, etc, but are sending messages directly targetted at other users, often carrying on conversation with several other Twitter users at the same time. Likewise, users are posting messages on a regular basis with no specific listeners intended that are very short blog style entries. They may or may not be looking for replies.Another way that users are perceived to be using social networking wrong is the content type, even beyond the conversational style. Many early adopters were in technical fields or communications or both. These types of users frequently used Twitter and Facebook to network with business associates and acquantances, or like minded tech heads. Robert Scoble, http://scobleizer.com/, claims that Facebook is his contact list these days. HIs contact list on Facebook is a who’s-who list of CEOs, tech gurus, and more. Today however, not only are people adding their own who’s-who, but they are growing their network by leaps and bounds by adding contacts that are contacts of their contacts. (say that three times fast) As an example, I’ve had numerous folks add me as a contact that are family members of contacts I’ve made. The friends list just keeps growing. Few of these new contacts in your or my list will end up being in our fields, related fields, or even vaguely along those lines.

So aside from the above being right or wrong uses and usage styles, just how did these come to be common on those networks? One word: Access

Access to these networks is the key. Just like the Internet used to be difficult and complex to get connected to, so were these social networks. The initial barrier for entry was just out of reach of the non geeks. Today however, online social networks and the creation of social media have extremely low barriers. They’ve become tools of the people. Not just specific people, but anyone with connectivity can participate. Who could have imagined social networks like Utterz, where anyone with a cell phone can network. Or Seesmic, where anyone with even the cheapest video recording camera can do video blogging.

The tools have become the tools we use everyday and those of certain age have grown up using their entire lives. My son and his friends all have cell phones. He picked up on Utterz the day he checked out the website. Some of my own contacts are now blogging thanks to Twitter and Utterz, where’d they’d barely heard of social networks months ago.

So is there a right or wrong way or reason to use Twitter, or Utterz, or Facebook? Is it better to record a video blog on a topic or participate in back and forth video conversations? Is one way and topical better than multichannel and free flowing? That’s for each user to decide for themselves. That’s the joy of social networks; each person can decide for themselves how to participate and what to tune into.

How are you using your social networks?

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Life and Live Casting – I have crazy contacts

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Have you ever watched someone making video while they drove their truck? Filmed from inside the truck?  That’s Jeff Hibbard and his idea of social media gone crazy.

What about the live parties with chat and video from all over and guests? That’s what Jonny Goldstein brings us every Wednesday evening.  Now that’s a party and half to be part of.

These two guys bring the fun and social back into social media.  What makes these two interesting the most?  The conversational tone and viewer involvement.

Jeff doesn’t just sit there and make faces or act goofy. Okay, he does some of that.  Jeff does more though, by talking to us, about us, and he gives you the feeling of being there.  Especially when he’s talking with us while filming out the front window of the truck.  Cheers to Jeff.

Jonny? He’s all about the real time conversation.  Not content to just act silly by himself like most of the YouTube folks out there, Jonny invites guests each week to join him at his place for a live party.  And guess who else is invited? That’s right; you and I are invited along.

Jonny puts him and his guest(s) online live, and even brings in the occasional guest on another camera.  Jeff Hibbard joined one time live from the truck!  Now that’s what social media is all about.

Though I’ve highlighted Jeff and Jonny, they are far from the only two out there that are engaging us with their efforts.  One of my other favorites for putting the social into social networks and media is Jeff Pulver, who recently brought us his Personal Social Networking Toolkit.

So what interesting and fun things have your social networks brought you? Who engages you? Share with me?

Social Media Club St. Louis – 1st Meeting – Round Up

I walked in to Kaldi’s in Kirkwood and immediately found the group of clubbies. They were right inside the door and already chatting. Tables had been rounded up, chairs brought around and folks where already exchanging emails and blog links. My kind of people.

Soon a group of five turned to ten and then over a dozen were on hand. Relocating was not an option. As an aside, you could tell the regular coffee drinkers; they were quick to visit the counter and get seated back with their steaming cups.

Everyone there was involved in blogging in some way. I’ve linked there here, courtesy of Brandstorming. Note that only one blog link is provided for each person, though several of us have more than one blog.

Jim Durbin: Brandstorming.com
Franki Durbin: Life In A Venti Cup
Tanner Hobin: TannerHobin
Andrew Nagy: Andrewnagy.net
Kurt Greenbaum – stltoday.com/vstl
Kristen Munson – socialmediamom.com
Justin Schmidt – justinspeak.com
Lisa Young – jedimom.net
Melody Cissell – news-bitch.com
Reem Abeidoh – www.reemabeidoh.com
Don Krutewicz – donkrutewicz
Angeline Soon – twitter.com/s00nami
Ryan Suther
Howard McAuliffe- StlDevelops.com

A couple of these folks are becoming more than just acquaintances by now, but there rest were all new faces to me. Unfamiliar faces didn’t put a damper on the conversation though. It was nonstop talking from minute one and out to the cars. We did the typical go around the room bit, but that is not to discount it as of no value. Introducing ourselves really lead to more conversations and connections, and talks of investing in each other.

I mentioned in a post earlier today that I wasn’t sure what my take away for new contacts would be, but let me assure you, this group was all worthy of my attention. Each brought a different perspective and attitude to the table. (tables – 8 of them) It will be difficult to pass up adding all of these new faces and inputs to my daily feeds.

I don’t have my pictures up yet, but when I do, they’ll be at my Flickr account and tagged with smcstl.

Please check out the blogs above and give them some love. Also, let us know about your local social media club meetups.

Yours,

Todd