Posts Tagged: facebook

Family, Friends, Apathy: Three Reasons Your Privacy is Eroding

This is a post I started in December of last year, then wandered away from for client work. There are a lot of these abandoned ideas that flounder in my drafts folder over the course of a year, and part of my December ritual is to clean them out if I deem them no longer relevant. I think this one is more relevant now than it was then, though the reason has changed. So, what did I intend to talk about? The way other people’s carelessness impacts you, and the way your own apathy compounds the error.

Since my most recent post was about leaving Facebook and already mentioned the privacy violations and user information abuses inherent in its code, let’s start with that network as our example. On Facebook, it doesn’t matter what your personal settings are for privacy. If you interact with people and brands on Facebook anywhere, in any way, your interaction is visible outside your trusted (or, in some cases, semi-trusted) network. As a user I find this infuriating, as the site design itself encourages invasive behavior and an erosion of the understanding of individual boundaries. Brands, however, love this, obviously. What is fine for you as an individual (e.g. clicking like or commenting on a stranger’s post – shown to you because a vague work acquaintance or maybe your cousin “liked” it, friending someone’s unstable family member – whom you have never met – because you think being connected tangentially on Facebook gives you permission to do so, sharing a post when it’s clearly set to “friends only” and not meant to be shared) is a violation for someone else. We wouldn’t behave that way in person, putting people’s privacy at risk (well, except photographers, but that’s a different rant), but people freely do so online. Stowe Boyd saw this challenge coming years ago when he talked about publicy vs privacy.

The only winning move is not to play

I figured out how to quit you, Facebook, and still see photos of my nieces and nephew.

First, I’m still “there,” a ghost in the machine — lurking, instead of participating. That way I can still virtually visit the friends, colleagues, and relatives who insist on swimming the algorithmic pool. I don’t trust Facebook — I haven’t for years — and it was time. In the version of this post about it on Facebook, I made a long list of “other places to find me” but you’re already here, so I’ll skip ahead to the how-to and why-the-heck part…

Deleting everything I’d ever posted took four weeks. Four. Long. Weeks.

Prepare For Facebook Changing News Feed, Adding Graph Search

If you are one of the many people out there who hate it each time Facebook makes a change to how you view it, each time it violates your privacy or tweaks your settings – brace yourself. Facebook is about to change things up again in a big way with two new iterations of the way you use their service. In a blatant bid to compete with Twitter, Google+ and Google Search, Facebook is introducing changes to the News Feed and adding something called Facebook Graph Search.

Facebook users are already freaking out about the potential privacy issues both changes will bring, and with Facebook’s past history of being cavalier with our privacy I think a healthy dose of pre-emptive adjustment to your settings is completely warranted before each new thing rolls out. Before I dip into settings and privacy issues, however, let’s take a look at how this will change how you see the people and pages (and ads) on Facebook.

Gizmodo did a great write up of the basic changes in the news feed, so I’ll just do a quick recap here. You can read the complete article on Gizmodo. I noticed that their post seems to view the changes in a largely positive light. Each person (and business) uses Facebook in a different way, however. Personally, I’m not looking forward to the categories being split. I prefer to get my updates in one lump feed. Frankly, I’d have been happy if they’d have just let me set my feed to “Most Recent” consistently and called it a day. However, if you are a a visual person you’ll love the huge emphasis on images and videos in each category. If you go to Facebook for music discovery or memes, or to bombard Facebook with baby and vacation photos and not to talk with friends, for example, that change will appeal to you as well; you’ll now be able to simply look at one of the four categories at a time. For the rest of us, having to switch back and forth will create extra clicks – an intentional way to force people to spend more time on Facebook, which in turn will pave the way for an increase in the number of ads you will see in your News Feed.

The biggest shift for people who hate Google+ is going to be how much they copied Google’s 2012 release of a new Google+ interface. Facebook has definitely taken a page from Google’s design book with the new News Feed.  If you balk at Twitter, the speed of the News Feed they are introducing will feel quite a bit Twitter-esque to you, and may take some getting used to. If you are one of those people who don’t like sites they view in their browser to work (and look) like an app on their phone or tablet, you may struggle with the new unification in appearance and functionality of Facebook’s Mobile Apps and their web interface. Other than getting used to a new way to find your friends and family and learning where things are in the new categories, in the end the new News Feed is simply a user interface (UI) change designed to make Facebook a more visual and ad-friendly experience. In short, the UI is something you can get used to in time like all of their other many changes.

Privacy and the New News Feed

Privacy on Facebook changes so often I check my privacy settings weekly. Sometimes when Facebook flips a UI switch it changes some of your existing settings – that’s just how Facebook works. It has a long-standing cavalier attitude toward it’s users’ best interests. I recommend going into your privacy settings now if you don’t have the new News Feed yet and locking them down, then doing the same for pictures (yes – photo privacy is in a slightly different place). I also recommend reviewing all of the applications, games and third party services that have access to your account and permission to post on your Timeline and locking those down as well. Then I recommend taking time over the next fews days to adjust the granular settings of your friend’s posts as they scroll by in your existing news feed (you do know you can mute what you see from each individual friend, right? You don’t have to see their game notifications, likes or comments – but that control is up to you, not them). I discussed how to do this ina video here in August 2012, and that advice should be current until the new News Feed is rolled out to all. I’ll make a new video on settings for privacy then.

Let’s Talk About Graph Search

From a real-use standpoint, Facebook’s new Graph Search is underwhelming. Facebook is trying to bring some competition to Google Search, but if you are like me, you search for new things on Google Search, and not things that are connected to your social graph. However, the new Graph Search does make things you find on Facebook more comprehensive. More importantly, Facebook has not abandoned their partnership with Bing. This means that if the location, interest, business, place, photo or whatever you are searching for isn’t on Facebook and a shared interest with someone in (or connected to) your network, you’ll still get the Bing suggested search results popping up.

Graph Search is still in a slow-to-roll-out beta stage. Unlike the change to the News Feed, which will happen rapidly (and soon) for everyone, Graph Search may not flip on for you for a while. Even so, you need to prepare (especially if you are a business). If you upload photos, check their privacy. If you are a business, upload more photos and make them larger and more interesting. If you haven’t added location information to your business page – do so. If you are an individual user, make sure you have your location settings turned off on Facebook browser and mobile interfaces if you want that kept private when you post an update.

Facebook will now allow you to find new people outside of your existing network who share an interest in things you search for, in locations you search for, and will deliver photos as results drawn from your network on topics you search for among other things. One example: you can search for people who have their relationship status set to single in your area and find new people to connect with via Graph Search. This is going to have an interesting impact on how much people share, and could serve to quiet some of the more obnoxious noise from people (and businesses) as users notice how far-reaching their social graph is. If your friends haven’t locked their profiles down as much as you have then how they share, like, and tag information pertinent to you matters more now than ever before. Much of the “creeping” that occurs on Facebook occurs through leaks in profiles that are not connected to you. This means educating the less tech-savvy in your circles about privacy settings (see above).

What About Graph Search and Privacy?

Because Graph Search is designed to unearth shared interests and connect you to like-minded people it will, by its very nature, infringe on privacy a bit. How much is yet to be discovered because it isn’t fully available to the entire user base. I recommend viewing the video above, which tells you how to set some of the more granular controls like how you can (or can’t) be tagged, and turning off the settings for “what your friends can see about you on Facebook” as well as turn off being found in search. There are some potential benefits to people who want to build a larger network of like-minded people, but the main benefit of Graph Search lies in what it can do for businesses.

Businesses should begin prepping their pages now to be more interesting and more shareable to ensure they are showing to all potential connections in the networks of the people who “like” your page. If you don’t want to reveal your love of Glee, bad karaoke, troll pages, political rant pages, vats of wine, or any other information that you felt was heretofore more private to a larger network, comb through your “liked” pages and interests and consider adjusting what you have liked and how much can be shared with friends. Keep in mind – to make all of these adjustments now, before you the News Feed and Graph Search is activated for you, will take the better part of an afternoon. Facebook did away with simple universal privacy settings long ago.

Page Ranking

One interesting benefit to businesses about Graph Search for Pages will be their push for better page ranking and more transparent metrics on the ranking of your pages. Double check a few things to improve your rank. First, check your page name and make sure it is not keyword heavy. Next, get a custom Facebook URL. It pains me every time I see a Page that hasn’t bothered to do this simple step. You can do this here. Make sure that all of the sections that allow you to give more information about your Page are filled out. This seems like a no-brainer, but so many businesses don’t bother to fill out their hours of operation, location or even provide a full About section, for example. Take the time – it will help you.

I can’t stress enough to be interesting if you are a business on Facebook. It matters now more than ever to create updates that compel your fans to engage with, and share, what you say. If your Facebook Page is a wall of announcements, heavy-handed sales pitches and general billboarding, the new Graph Search will start to mute how often people see you. It rewards Pages with high user activity and variety of content.

What If You Aren’t Afraid To Play?

If you are one of the early adopter types who just wants to play with all of this yourself, you can request early access to both new features. To request access to the News Feed early you can add your name to this list. If you want early access to Graph Search you can find that waiting list here (Note: that one has a longer wait for many people).

Social Media War Games

The simple fact of Facebook remains: much like War Games, “the only way to win is not to play”, especially if you are a user who wants to maintain a small social footprint behind a curtain of privacy. For many, leaving is not (yet) an option. They are either on Facebook for friends and family they can’t find elsewhere, have a business that needs a Facebook Page to reach new customers, or perhaps work in a field that requires a social presence (the fact that much of life requires a social presence now is worth a post of its own). Revisiting your privacy settings on Facebook (and elsewhere) should become a habit if you plan to stay on the service. In the meantime, explore these two new options and enjoy them – they both have benefits. It’s just a matter of getting used to something new and adjusting to change fluidly.

 

 

How to Take Back Control of Facebook Privacy

At the request of many friends and family members, as well as folks on social networks I see struggling as Timeline on Facebook is rolled out to everyone, I made this quick video tutorial.

In under ten minutes it will help you regain control of your Facebook privacy, tame your news feed and silence noisy updates and ads. In the next video, we’ll cover even more in depth ways to be private on Facebook when not using Facebook at all isn’t an option for you.

HootSuite - Social Media Management

Throwing Stones at Glass Houses, or Privacy vs Publicy

Normally I am all business on this blog, but let’s take a moment to think about a few tech issues on a personal level. I think Google Glass is cool tech – I love cool tech – but if I see someone wearing Google Glass glasses after they come out, I’m infinitely less likely to want to be anywhere near them for any type of interaction. As the glasses get better and harder to detect, I’m likely to learn people have them by experience then avoid them. I’m wondering if I’m the only one?

You see, in spite of my public job, I don’t assume that every moment, thought or deed (my own or others’) needs to be public.  I am not a fan of being photographed or having video taken without being asked first, or having photos put up I don’t get a chance to look at first, and if you have ever tagged me in a non-work related photo – well, you already know how I feel about that. I value privacy and the dwindling ability to choose how much the internet at large gets to see of my (actual) life.  Just because you *can* take a picture of someone in a public place doesn’t mean you *should*.

People ask me why Facebook is my least favorite social network. Setting aside the network’s blatant disregard for a consistent user experience, the manipulation of the user base while on site and the downright Machiavellian terms of service: the total disregard for privacy on the network, and the inconsiderate behavior it encourages in people, really make me cringe. I feel we must do our best to resist a world where we have spy glasses, drone planes, a culture of eavesdropping on communications and an “always on” mentality.

Let’s look at it from the simple perspective of crime, if you don’t like the privacy angle. As a woman, I am cautious to only pre-disclose events I plan to attend if I know my home will have someone in it and that the event will keep me surrounded by people. I don’t connect with many people on sites like Foursquare – I use them to keep me motivated for things like the gym, but never check into my home, and more often than not I keep my check ins private unless I am – you guessed it – surrounded by people and know my home is protected while I’m gone.  I value time with my friends where I can let my hair down a bit and have a little fun, and I eschew anyone who tries to make those vital moments of being out of the public eye public by sticking a camera phone or flip cam in my face.

It’s because that behavior is rude and invasive, true, but  it’s also because it’s not wise. I can’t control the privacy settings of other people – I can only control my own. A large percentage of information bleed online comes from the missed settings and carelessness of other people that you know. You can lock your own privacy settings down tight, but your inebriated friend at the reception might have his set to public, or a relative might not be as tech savvy, and enough unwarranted photos might reveal you or your kids’ favorite hangout, even if you try to keep it private, which could put you and people you know at risk.

I get a lot of flack from photographer friends about my desire to be asked before photographed. They err on the side of “if you’re in a public place, your consent is automatic”. I agree that at times that’s true. I can’t really get annoyed if I’m speaking at a conference and my picture or a video is taken, and I don’t – it’s all about context.  There is a difference between being in a “public place” and “publicy” and a need in this hyperconnected age to be vigilant and respectful about not just your own privacy but the privacy of those you come in contact with.

Mass adoption of new technology always causes a cultural shift. As one example: the dissolution of public transportation and rise of the car brought us the suburbs and contributed to urban decay in addition to making it possible to do cool things like go visit relatives in Ireland or go on vacation quickly and easily (the car and the plane brought us the world, but the trade offs for easy access to the planet have been pretty significant).

I wonder if we are prepared for – or even cognizant of – the cultural shift away from privacy that is in process right now and what it will cost us if not handled delicately and reigned in to allow for private spaces inside and out. Study after study  shows that privacy, the ability to reinvent oneself or move past a prior mistake in life (Think for a moment of Facebook’s recent indication that they will open up to ages 13 and under and what that will mean to their ability to grow from bad decisions, learn and reinvent when it’s time to move into their adult life. Pretty serious impact, isn’t it? ), the chance for quiet solitude and reflection to grow creativity and deepen thought processes, the ability to move safely from one place to another and more are vital to our well being as individuals and as a society.

*Note: the issue of trading our online behavioral and shopping data for access to sites is a whole ‘nother issue/can of worms. Post on that coming soon.

What are your thoughts on privacy vs publicy and this huge cultural shift that is going on under our noses?

The Reports of Facebook’s Death Are Greatly Exaggerated

Please believe me when I say that I fervently wish reports of Facebook’s pending doom like this one were true. I just can’t agree, however. I think it is the wishful thinking of a tech press, sour investors and tech savvy professionals that don’t like the platform, and that it doesn’t take into account some key factors.

The most significant factor this prediction ignores is the human element. I agree that Facebook is evil and manhandles our privacy on a regular basis. I’d love to see people stand up and fight to prevent the significant changes the careless use of Facebook on a regular basis has made to our individual concept of accepted privacy vs publicy and how those changes are (negatively) impacting our society. The chances of that happening are slim to none, however, no matter how hard people like myself advocate for vigilantly guarding your right to privacy.

Completely ignoring the added issues of Facebook’s impact on how we think, our workday and our offline relationships, we can’t ignore one thing Facebook has mastered: it’s users behavior and emotional need to connect. Facebook has inserted itself into our lives in a way that MySpace and Yahoo simply never did. It’s crossed a barrier between generations that neither of those social networks were able to cross by finding a way to coexist across age limits, careers and demograhics. MySpace never really resonated with the parents or the grandparents in the way Facebook does – they got lost in the glare and blare and glitter. Yahoo never really resonated with kids past a certain age the way it resonated with an older demographic. Facebook manages to straddle the line.

The second factor that the article ignores is iteration. Many would choose the over-used term innovation here, but that’s not accurate. There is not a lot in the way of true innovation going on in tech right now. However, the company that can spot trends and iterate fastest across the most demographic touchpoints will win, and for the foreseeable future, like it or not, that company looks like it’s going to be Facebook.  The only way I see Facebook being completely gone by 2020 is if the internet (or the concept of a nextnet, whatever this space becomes over time) is itself gone. As long as we can connect, Facebook has shown a willingness (and budget) to iterate itself into our lives continuously.

Some say marketing will be what kills Facebook over time, but I disagree there also. Facebook has made it quite difficult for the average marketer of the average company to see success on their platform, and that is very intentional. They want to straddle the line of paying the bills and keeping the user enthralled, and you can’t do that as a company if you let marketing run the show (see this piece on GM for one example). Companies that play well in the pool, like Ford, see success, but others struggle, unable to see beyond traditional, limited marketing rhetoric. This ability to force marketing to act on the sidelines and to put the users into the marketing stream via stories is a third thing that will keep Facebook relevant far longer than most expect.

The fourth and final key element to the longevity of Facebook is their New York Yankees style growth plan. If they can make it, they do, and if they can’t make it, they buy it (disclaimer: Red Sox Fan). There is a lot of talent out there toiling away at various startups or under the umbrella of stodgier existing companies that will have plenty of ideas and technologies for sale to keep Facebook strong for years to come. Jut because some pundits think that’s a lazy approach, or some purists think you should create these things for yourself, doesn’t mean that buying talent or tools doesn’t work. So far it seems to be working far better for Facebook than it does for Google, a company who tends to ignore or kill the majority of the cool tech it buys.

How do you come down on this argument? Do think the projections of Facebook’s demise are greatly exaggerated or correct, and why?

 

Google Plus for Music

I did a brief talk as part of a series of sessions by a very interesting and diverse group of music industry types at music 2.0 in Boston, MA this week.

I thought I’d put up the slides and record some fresh audio to give everyone a refresher.

If you can’t see the QuickTime movie below for whatever reason, Google Plus for Music is also on my Slideshare channel.

One thing I didn’t go into in my talk, mainly because it was a little advanced and I only had 15 minutes, was the Hangout With Extras feature. I highly recommend checking this out if you are an artist looking to collaborate as it pulls in Google Docs (lyrics) and other features to allow you to actively talk, chat, edit and record while in a Hangout. It’s the little blue link that appears on the “get your mic ready” page when you begin a Hangout.

WMUR Channel 9 Tech Talk Transcript from February 29, 2012

I have so enjoyed doing Tech Talk with you via WMUR Channel 9 (ABC) during the month of February.

I hope you found it useful. Here is this morning’s transcript

 

  • Hi Leslie,

    I’m currently interning with a very small company that has taken on the admirable (and challenging) task of rekindling the flame of local radio in Manchester NH, and my background in media studies and audio production has elevated my role to more of an operations manager.

    I’ve recently been exploring the ways in which our social media accounts interact with our website, and I’m trying to determine which functions are better provided by one medium over another. In short, our website provides our listeners with tremendous functionally, such as a blog, audio and video clips, press releases and survey questions, and our strategy has largely been guiding our audience to this website through our radio show and our social media accounts.

    My question is this: is it more productive to pull Facebook/Twitter users away from those sites and to our own unique website (which we also sell ad space for), or is it more effective to cultivate stronger and more interactive relationships on these accounts alone, or some combination of the two? At time it seems counterproductive to pull users away from an environment in which they already happy interact (Facebook/Twitter), but our ability to monetize our own website is important to our business model.

    Thank you for your input!

    by Steve Messa 7:00 AM
  • There are two parts to this answer.

    First: It is always better to pull people over to your site whenever possible for the simple reason that you OWN it. The TOS (Terms of Service) of Facebook, especially, dictates that any photos or other content you upload to their site, they own and can use for profit. They are doubling down on this with their upcoming social ads, that actually will pull comments from people’s public fan pages to sell their products. It’s always better for the business to keep full ownership of their content and full control over what they post and how it is used.

    Second: You can’t control how users prefer to use the internet, and the fact that folks are already comfortable with Facebook, etc and are already there means that yes, a presence there is key to your business surviving and thriving. The trick is to instill some kind of app or other mechanism that allows the user on FB to enjoy your content that you are producing on your site – not all businesses have the budget for this. If you don’t, then have a thriving presence there centered around conversation with your fans and use that to bring them out to your site.

    by Leslie Poston 7:01 AM
  • certain accounts are following me on twitter who i don’t want to follow me. can i block them?
    by Jas 7:10 AM
  • Yes, you can block accounts on Twitter. If you use Twitter by going to their site, Twitter.com, you can block someone by clicking their user name. This brings up a window with a synopsis of their profile. In that window you see a drop down arrow. Clicking that brings up a list of options (mention them, direct message them, add to a list, etc. The options for reporting and blocking are there. If you use a program like Hootsuite for Twitter, clicking the name brings up a profile window, and the block user, or block and report for spam, is at the bottom of the window.
    by Leslie Poston 7:12 AM
  • When is the iPad 3 coming out??
    by tech question 7:14 AM
  • I wish I knew! Apple keeps a tight lid on their product launches. Speculation says this year, but only Apple knows for sure.
    by Leslie Poston 7:14 AM
  • Is Tweetdeck the best twitter application or can you recommend a better one?
    by Jas 7:18 AM
  • Tweetdeck has been acquired by Twitter in recent years and they have been making some changes to it recently that have the users a little upset. While they sort it out I might recommend another option. 

    I use Hootsuite to manage my account and those of my clients. It is free for one user but more users cost money. One reason I like it – it lets you see when someone has replied to a customer already if you have lots of people on one account.

    Seesmic is another option, totally free, for one person to use. It’s really nicely done and clean.

    Another is Twimbow – a free app that lets you sort your stream by color and other cool things.

    If you like stats another one that isn’t completely free is PeopleBrowsr.

    If you are a larger business you might want something more robust, like Meltwater Engage (formerly JitterJam), the Awareness Hub, Eloqua, etc.

    There are hundreds of apps out there to choose from, though, so if you don’t see one you like up there you can look at tools like SocDir.com to find more.

    by Leslie Poston 7:23 AM
  • Suzanne from Facebook: I cannot load my music to y kindle I have tried on three diffrent computers and have followed all teh steps on the kindle & using the direction in my media players on my computers. very disapointed. any suggestions?
    by Kevin Clay/WMUR Staff 7:28 AM
  • Hmm. That sounds like a tricky problem. I know Kindles don’t always play well with music that is not in the right format. If that isn’t the issue, then I think Amazon Tech Support might be the best place to find an answer for this one – they can look at your whole problem and review the steps you’ve taken with you and help you fully.
    by Leslie Poston 7:30 AM
  • Hi Leslie, thanks so much for doing this chat today. I was wondering what’s the best way to increase the number of Twitter followers I have?
    by BigCity 7:31 AM
  • The best way to increase your Twitter followers is to be involved, be engaged and be interesting. For the first month you are on Twitter (or longer if you are struggling with it) it can feel like you are talking to yourself. There are some simple ways to get more people interested in talking with you:

    1) Make sure your Twitter account is not protected – protected accounts are hidden, so no one can find you to follow you

    2) Use Twitter search to find people talking about things you are interested in or topics relevant to your company – then join the conversation. You don’t have to be following someone to reply to them on Twitter! It’s by nature a public conversation and public news feed – jump right on in. Then, if you get a dialogue going, you might find that those people are people you want to follow and that want to also follow you. The #Discover area on Twitter.com is also useful for finding common topics to talk about with folks you haven’t met yet.

    3) At an event? Find out the hasthag and jump in on the conversation there and share your event photos etc using it. For example, Social Media Breakfast NH uses #SMBNH every time we have a breakfast so attendees can find each other and find content relevant to the event. Also make a list of the attendees to follow, and make sure you are on any public Twitter Lists for the event as well.

    4) Jump in on a live Twitter Chat. A great one is #blogchat on Sunday nights, but there are a ton of chats relevant to you. Check the full list here (or add yours to it if you have one you host): docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0AhisaMy5TGiwcnVhejNHWnZlT3NvWFVPT3Q4NkIzQVE

    5) Get into Twitter habits. For example, @CSPENN is know for his link sharing #the5 now (among other things) – people now expect him to share his five best links using that hashtag. Find your “thing” then make it a habit

    This is just the tip of the iceberg but it should get you started!

    by Leslie Poston 7:38 AM
  • Sarah from Facebook: What do you think about pinterest’s policies on copyright?
    by Kevin Clay/WMUR Staff 7:39 AM
  • Pinterest and sites like it (Anybeat, Minglewing, Gentlemint, Foodspotting, TinyReview, etc) all have similar copyright policies. Facebook has one of the most evil site policies for copyright, giving them ownership of anything you upload, including private photos on your personal page, to sell for use in ads, etc. It just doesn’t get the same public outcry (which is too bad – it really should get the same attention until the problem is resolved, but I digress). 

    I like that Pinterest addressed the customer service aspect of the issue by putting control into your hands – if you look on their site you see they now provide site owners with a bit of code that allows you to opt out of having people “Pin” your content.

    Remember: the trade off for these free sites is YOU: is your data and your content. Protect yourself.

    by Leslie Poston 7:44 AM
  • I’m a teacher and was wondering if you know of any WordPress plugins for a self-hosted site that might be of educational use, such as games or site features.
    by LorenzoA 7:44 AM
  • There are so many cool WordPress plugins and site features out there for education, and some that are not intended for education but get put to use in the classroom. With so many it’s hard to narrow it down, but here are a few (YMMV):

    LePress: organize courses, make assignments

    Lesson Plan Book: Calendar of lessons

    Possibly Related Classroom Projects pulls in relevant projects from DonorsChoose

    Then there are a ton of plugins for calendars, histories, timeline visualization, visual content enhancement, and collaborative editing that are useful but not classroom specific.

    Find other teachers like @ldpodcast @johnherman @holden @scastriotta etc on Twitter and talk to them about what they use also.

    by Leslie Poston 7:47 AM
  • I have a Verizon iPhone, but I suppose my question could pertain to any iPhone. What are effective ways to charge it like during a power outage with no house AC power and car DC power is out of the question?
    by Thomas Grice 7:49 AM
  • If you do a quick search online, there is a charging case you can buy that extends the life of the battery long past normal use time. 

    There are also USB charge packs (look for one with the right connector style for the iPhone – some are meant for other phones). I keep USB charge packs in my house for my Android phone – it’s saved my bacon in a few NH ice storms and outages to have them around.

    by Leslie Poston 7:51 AM
  • I have 509 items on my Kindle (oldest model) I can I clean it out without having to delete each item?
    by martha 7:53 AM
  • I’m not a Kindle user, but it looks like you aren’t the only one having that issue. Apparently you can unregister your Kindle, download the items, then clean it off, HOWEVER – I’m not sure I’d recommend that route – I’ve never tried it myself. Here is a bit more about the problem: quora.com/How-can-I-delete-the-archived-items-on-my-Amazon-Kindle-without-deleting-the-books-from-my-Amazon-Library
    by Leslie Poston 7:55 AM
  • Thanks to everyone for the questions and thanks to Leslie Poston for answering questions all this month! You can see more about how to connect with Leslie on the right side of this page.
    by Kevin Clay/WMUR Staff 7:59 AM

Read more: http://livewire.wmur.com/Event/Got_A_Tech_Question_Ask_Our_Expert#ixzz1nmhFoxAg

First Thoughts on Facebook Timeline For Business

Facebook Timeline for Business switched on for me today. Usually what I do is evaluate it then give clients recommendations after I’ve used it for a while, but frankly I thought it would be more fun to take a quick video of me futzing around with it for the first time, just like y’all might. This video is what a quick mental assessment of a tool for my own business looks like on the first time I see a change. Be rest assured, however, that while this video is a (very) casual look at what it looks like for anyone on day one, there will be more advice coming from me on this, because it radically changes the strategy of most businesses on Facebook.

Initial Takeaways:

1) Be Visual – This is graphics heavy. Your cover photo is your best place to make a sale now and the wall is simply there to reinforce it with customer engagement.

2) Try out different page views to see what works best – it seems to me on first look that different types of business are going to see differing successes with Highlights, Friend Only, Other, etc. For example, in a vertical where customer engagement and reviews are key, the tab highlighting the posts of others might be a great choice.

3) This puts the emphasis on your admin tools and your metrics/insights, which should solve some of the on-ramp and learning curve issues Facebook has faced in the past. This is also good because not enough people have been utilizing insights – a powerful tool for business – now you have no excuse. They are front and center in the admin panel.

4) This is supposed to create a history of a business but it doesn’t really. Too many businesses out there had special circumstances caused by Facebook’s own on-ramp issues and lack of certain features. Take Magnitude Media, for example. Once upon a time we focused on wine and were named Uptown Uncorked. Then we branched out, and have a few years where we helped more folks but still had our old name. When we rebranded, Facebook wasn’t allowing merging of pages – this means we had to start fresh. So did a lot of other businesses. Therefore, M2 looks like it started last year but in reality it just lost the previous page because of another FB issue – not being able to rename pages if you have more than 100 fans. Even Coke, world famous soft drink, had to buy a page that was started by fans – if they had not been able to do that as a major brand, they wouldn’t have a history either since they didn’t get on board early. So, Facebook wants to show the story of a business, but through their own faults with a lack of features (edit, page renaming or merging if more than 100 fans, etc), these stories aren’t complete.

What are your thoughts? Put them in the comments!

Double click to play, single click to pause:

(If the player below doesn’t play well with your browser, or you don’t have QuickTime, you can also view this video on SlideShare)

[qt: http://magnitudemedia.net/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/TimelinePreview.mov 540 300]

 

UPDATED to include this post by friend Cappy Popp from ThoughtLabs (he literally wrote the book on Facebook). He agrees with some of the assessments I made, and takes it a bit deeper for you. Enjoy!

UPDATED to include this from Jay Baer – a spot-on post about the detriments this has for small business. “14 Ways New Facebook Betrays Small Business – Smarts on the unfortunate evolution of Facebook from @JayBaer http://ar.gy/02vA “

Let’s Talk Facebook, Google Plus, Dunbar Numbers and Small vs Large Networks

I jotted my thoughts on small vs large networks in a QIK video, but I’d love to have a deeper conversation with you about it here.

Tell me your thoughts below!