Category Archives: Facebook

Social Media Blog: Social Networks Changing Our Cultural DNA?

I read today that a 16 year old filed a "hacking" complaint against his mother. Apparently, this 16 year old from Ark forgot to log off the computer and his mom decided to log in and check into what he was doing as well as allegedly wrote things on his wall which could be "slanderous".

Hmmm….How many things are wrong in this story?

In the first place, what's apparent is that there's no trust between the mother and her 16 year old son. If there was trust, there would be no need to "hack" in. Also,if the kid forgot to log out, is that really called hacking?
 
So parents shouldn't check up on their kids because that'd be a violation? What if the 16 year old, MINOR, was being cyber stalked? Next thing you know, kids will begin complaining about that phone that allows parents to geotrack their kids. And why would the kid need to go to the courts is totally beyond me.

And as far as the mother goes, why any mother would have to resort to breaking in is beyond my comprehension. And even if she had to do "secretive" monitoring, why would she herself post something that would be slanderous to her own child?
 
Yes, I know this blog is not on a "business-related" topic but as a parent AND a social media practitioner, this news item really really bugged me and I wanted to report it so that other business owners who are parents take note and know their rights…..
 
 

Social Media Blog: Quality versus Quantity on Twitter

So when I talk about Social Networking, invariably the question comes up "Is quantity important or should we just focus on quality?"

Yes, quality is very important but so is quantity.

Why you ask?

Well, here are two logical reasons for your consideration:

  • Big numbers attract bigger participation: Right, wrong, or indifferent, people follow the leaders. If you have 10,000 followers (or fans or friends), people want to follow you because you appear to be "influential". Think about it for yourself; would you be more inclined to follow someone who has 2 followers or someone who has 2000?
     
  • Bigger numbers give you bigger reach: Say you have 5000 followers and you post a general tweet. Now say only two of your followers pick up the tweet and retweet it (repost it) for their followers. And say those two followers each have 5000 followers. That means that your tweet just got visible to 15000 people in a jiffy. Whether all 15000 read your tweet or not, it's there for people to see. That's huge! Your reach through social networks is dependent on the followers and friends in your network. The more you have, the bigger the reach.

So yes, quantity is an important dimension when conducting social networking. Focus on quality AND quantity and you'll see the benefits of social networking grow exponentially.
 

Social Media Blog: Integrating Social Media Strategy With Public Relations Strategy

Reporters love social media just as much as you and I do. Yep, a recent study conducted at the George Washington University showed that reporters are relying on social media sources when researching stories. 89% of surveyed reporters said that they use blogs for story research, 65% depend on Facebook and LinkedIn, and over 50% rely on sites like Twitter.

The logical step then for all business owners is to integrate their Public Relations strategy with their Social Media strategy.

Although reporters aren't going to simply rely on social networks for their stories, given that they are looking there means that your business needs to be there. Half the battle is won when you simply show up on social networks. The rest depends on how well you leverage the social networks to promote and brand your company and its products and/or services.
 
A comprehensive strategy is one in which all facets of marketing are covered. When implementing your social media strategy, to get a bigger bang for your buck, remember to integrate public relations with social networking.

Social Media Blog: Want a Gmail Email? You Must be 13 Years of Age or Older!

Your kids want a gmail ID? They'll need to be at least 13 years of age to do so. That's the new change over at Google after the buzz over the launch of the "Buzz" social networking platform.

Google is also helping parents with tips on protecting teens with a video posted on YouTube about safely using Buzz.

There continues to be a growing concern about privacy, or lack there of, on social networking sites. Social networks increase our vulnerability to criminals, bullying, sexual predators and other predators. Companies like Facebook, Google, and Twitter will need to continue educating users on how to be safe while networking online.

 

Social Media Blog: Looking for a Job? Then Think Twice Before Posting on Social Networks

I don't know what it is that makes people want to "tell-all" on social networks. Why oh why do you have to tell people about thing that are best kept secret? And when you are looking for a job, social networks may become your biggest enemy if you love to tell all.
 
You know that Facebook is one of the biggest social networking sites with over 400 million active users. And you should know that employers are leveraging the power of social networks to find out more about potential and current employees.  So what are some "don'ts" on social networking sites like Facebook?

  • First impressions can be lasting: Hide those photos that show you totally drunk or behaving inappropriately. Ask your friends NOT to post pictures of you online without your permission.
     
  • Quit whining online: Complaining about how tough life is, what an ass your boss is or how difficult it is to work at your current employer is not going to win you any brownie points with potential future employers.
     
  • Beware what your status updates share: Ummm obviously you don't want to be constantly updating your status during work hours. Nor do you want to talk about missing deadlines due to planned parties or vacations. Bosses don't like stuff like that and neither do prospective employers
     
  • Use your privacy settings:  Make privacy setting updates your priority. Check and recheck who can see what information on your profile so that you are protected.

Beware and be smart. If it can land you in jail or unemployed, don't post it online.

 

Social Media Blog: Mobile Users & Your Business

Smartphones, smartphones, smartphones. That's what's hot!!!

Smartphone users are using their mobile browsers to network on Facebook and Twitter. ComScore, a web metric reporting firm reported that there was an 8 percent jump in the usage of social networks using Smartphones in January 2010.

Facebook access through a mobile browser jumped to 112% and Twitter saw a 347% increase in mobile browser based access when compared to previous year's usage.

Now although Mark Donovan, senior VP of mobile at ComScore, thinks that this jump is attributed to the fact that since mobile users are constantly in touch with their network via phone, text, and email, networking on social networks is a natural next step.
 
See, now that's where I think differently. It's not just that people communicate with their circle of friends using mobile phones more and more. I think it's happening because smartphones are a great time-filler. I mean have you of late found yourself getting annoyed when someone's late? Instead, don't you just breathe a sigh of relief and think "oh, thank god, now I can go tweet"?

I know what I do when someone's late; I whip out my smartphone and first I check email, then I log on to my yahoo chat, then I go visit Twitter to read and tweet. The next thing I know, my late appointment shows up and all the fun ends. LOL
 

Social Media Blog: If Buzz not a Facebook or Twitter Rival, then what is it for?

Since Google Buzz's launch a few days ago, most people opined that Google's newest plan to engage in the social networking arena was to give Facebook and Twitter a run for their money. But Google VP of product management, Bradley Horowitz, assured critics & others that that was not their plan. Hmmmm…..

He said that Google's Buzz is focusing on creating "conversation" which is missing in most other social networks.

Double hmmm!
 
Horowitz emphasized that for Google's  Buzz conversation and engagement was the focus and it wasn't just about checking or updating status like people do on Facebook or Twitter. Google also plans to create services around that engagement and interaction.
 
OKAY! So the Buzz is different according to Google. But I just don't see the difference yet; at least not from the standpoint of engagement. I engage with people on Twitter. I do a lot more engagement with people on Facebook than I do on Twitter. I've checked out Google's Buzz and I see the same kind of opportunity to engage. Except now I can stay on the Buzz and also email people.

Anyone want to enlighten me as to what I'm missing that's so special about the Buzz that it fills a "market need"?

Social Media Blog: Pleaserobme.com Raises Cyber Criminal Activity Awareness

Pleaserobme.com is a social media website "listing all those empty homes out there". The website aggregates all Twitter tweets which have location based information or information telling others that the user is not home. The website explains its purpose with this little explanation in their "Why" section:

"The danger is publicly telling people where you are. This is because it leaves one place you're definitely not… home. So here we are; on one end we're leaving lights on when we're going on a holiday, and on the other we're telling everybody on the internet we're not home."
 
Here are some recent feeds from the site; although I've protected them by leaving out the tweeter's information:

  • @xxx I'm at http://4sq.com/9i…..

You get the point. Pleaserobme.com's goal is to raise awareness about this growing concern about online privacy and cyber criminal activity. They do it in an interesting way; if I were them, I'd do it just a little bit differently. Calling it "opportunities" just makes me feel creepy even though their intent is to raise awareness and help people be safe.
 
Are we all saying "Please Rob Me" when we are posting real-time status updates to share where we are, where we plan to go on vacation, who's home and who's not? I did that once too. I posted details about where the family was going on vacation including dates and location pictures of the most beautiful condominium I found on the ocean. Talk about stupidity!!!
 
I'm a reformed social networker. I am a lot more careful about personal information sharing than I was even 10 months ago.
 
Be safe everyone, think before you post your status and details about your life online.

 

Social Media Blog: Extensive Corporate Cyber Attacks Discovered

NetWitness, a Northern Virginia security firm found that between 2008 to January 2010, over 75,000 computers in 2,500 or so firms across the US and the world were attacked by cyber criminals. NetWitness states that these attacks targeted corporate data, credit card information, and other sensitive information at SlimLife hcg drops providers including the health and technology companies in 196 countries including the US, Mexico, and the Middle East.

A NetWitness engineer discovered the intrusion last month and learned that the hackers lured employees to download infected emails or software which when downloaded allowed the hackers to take over the computers, scrape the passwords, and use that data to login other systems.

What this report highlights is the need for more robust security software for companies and individuals. The hackers are getting more and more sophisticated and its time for all of us to really get focused on online security.

Social Media Blog: Have you checked your Facebook privacy settings recently?

Is your birth date on your Facebook or another social network profile? How about your school or hometown information? And are you one of those individuals who also uses private/personal information as an answer to security questions for online banking and online accounts? Are you getting where I'm going with this?
 
Cyber criminals can harvest all this information from your profiles if you are not hiding these private details from strangers. Also note that you face risk even if you are sharing this information only with friend if the friend's account gets compromised.

So how can you protect yourself?
 
Check your privacy settings. Determine who is allowed to view what information. Hide details from everyone who doesn't need to know personalized information. Be careful about adding people whom you don't know as friends. Think before you share any private information online including vacation plans, dinner out plans, and anything that compromise your security.

When was the last time you checked your Facebook privacy settings? I checked mine settings again today. Make this a recurring task on your calendar to make sure that any new additions to your friends or followers are thoroughly checked and your information remains as private as possible.

Identity threat is real. Cyber criminals are combing online websites to find their next victim. Don't become one.