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November 2009

Page 2

38 articles in November 2009
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Some of you may remember the awesome “Awkward-Social-Networking-Pickup-Line-Pun-Contest” I held last week in a Thuper Therious Thursday post. If you don’t remember, then you can check it out here: THIS IS A LINK TO READ THE POST. ūüôā

I have to say, I got some HILARIOUS entries. Hilarious. A couple pickup lines almost made me cry… from laughing so hard.

Congratulations to Jim Williams (@digitaldrivel) for his HILARIOUSLY awkward-social-networking-pickup-line-pun-contest-entry.

Jim has won a grab bag of comedy and social awesomeness from the Dirty South. Thanks for your hilarious line, Jim. Couldn’t have done it without you.

BUT, due to the fact that some of the pickup lines were borderline inappropriate, I didn’t want to necessarily post them HERE on my “professional” blog… so I actually posted some of them and wrote about the contest in a guest post for the MISTER DIPLOMAT blog (a comedy blog from the Dirty South). You can read the hilarity and see the winning line here.

Now, aren’t you sad you missed out? Don’t fret. More fun contests to come. I promise.

Word.

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As you are reading this (barring that you are reading this ON Thanksgiving Day), I am doing one of three things:

1. Snacking on the snacking pie.
2. Stuffing my face.
2. Sleeping.

After doing those things, I will need to work off those calories. I mean, I AM training for a half-marathon. I can’t set myself back 6 days.

Well, I love to dance. Why not dance to the beat of the holiday? I will be doing the turkey legg. I hope you enjoy this video – and don’t forget to do the TURKEY legg (via@iagreewithjoe). If you can’t see the video, click here.

Word.

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Thank you!Maybe because it’s the day before Thanksgiving. Maybe because I’m in grateful mode. Maybe it’s because I just ran 2.5 miles. Maybe it’s because I’m craving a Chipotle burrito. I don’t know. But I’m feeling Thankful today.

Therefore, this week’s Social Media Tip of the Week is: Give Thanks.

Now, what exactly do I mean by that, other than the obvious literal meaning of “give thanks”? We all know, well hopefully most of us know, social media is all about community. It’s all about making personal connections, networking, sharing, supporting, engaging, and giving. However, I feel like sometimes well (yes, all of us) tend to forget what the big point of social media is all about. Of course this is not on purpose – we just get jaded by the things life throws at us and subsequently we lose sight of what is in front of us.

Sure, social media has many purposes – to connect with old friends, make new friends, market a business or product, whathaveyou. But to me, what makes social media so awesome, is how we’re taking away that traditional approach of “I-could-care-less-about-you-I-just-want-to-market-my-product” and we’re replacing it with “I-do-care-about-you-and-I-want-to-get-to-know-you-and-then-maybe-you’ll-buy-my-stuff.” Social media is different. It’s awesome. And it’s honest. It’s hard to be a good BS’er through social media – because very quickly you’ll be exposed… and not in a good way.

So what I want you to do this week is take a second to step back and think about your networks. Are you doing a lot of talking and not a lot of listening? Are you doing a lot of talking and not a lot of engaging? Are you recognizing those people in the space, “your space” for their great content, approachable personality, engaging persona, or overall awesomeness?

If you answered “yes” or “no” to any of those aforementioned questions – then you need to give thanks to the people who are awesome in your life, in your networking, at your job, anyone. Who or what are you grateful for? Thank them. Today. Don’t wait until tomorrow. Do it today.

Make someone feel awesome. They deserve it.

And while I’m thinking about it, I want to thank YOU. Yeah, you reading this. Right now. ¬†Without you, I’d be talking to myself. And that would be awkward.

I also want to go ahead and preemptively thank my sister, Bridgid for the awesome Thanksgiving dinner that I know she is going to make tomorrow (with of course, my B-I-L and family helping). She’s a rockstar baker, cook, friend, and sister.

Tell me, who do YOU want to give thanks to?

Word.

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Today, I simply want to pose a debate. There has been some major discussion in social networking platforms about the use (or non-use) of social media and it’s effect on the law, jobs, benefits, etc.¬†There are two major recent cases that I want to use as fodder for this debate – and I really want to hear your opinions and get some good discussion going! Scales-1

HEADLINE: “Canadian woman loses benefits over Facebook photos.”

STORY: Basically, this woman was on long-term sick leave for diagnosed manic depression and was receiving benefits for her disorder. Manulife, her insurance company, saw pictures on her on a recent trip to the beach, at a birthday party, and on a night out with friends where she was smiling and looked “happy.” Her insurance agent used these photos as evidence that she was no longer depressed and the woman’s health benefits were immediately dropped.

DEBATE: There are a couple issues here and I have posed the following questions:

  1. It was reported that the woman’s photos were set to “private” on her Facebook page. With that being said, SHOULD these photos be allowed to be used as evidence if they were not intended for public viewing? Or is ALL content posted on a social networking site no longer “private”?
  2. Even if the photos were public, just because someone looks “happy,” does that mean they are healthy? Or should further investigation been taken?

HEADLINE: “Police arrest man for NOT using Twitter.”

STORY: 13-year-old singing sensation Justin Bieber was set to visit fans and sign autographs at Roosevelt Mall in New York last week. Well, Bieber stayed away from the mall because the crowd inside the mall had become too unruly. Bieber had tweeted for everyone to go home and that someone from his camp had already been arrested. Mall security was cracking DOWN! The police had asked James Roppo, an executive of Bieber’s label to send out a message via Twitter to get fans to leave and go home. Well, Roppo is not on Twitter – thus it was determined that he was “obstructing justice” and was arrested for not complying with police demands.

DEBATE:

  1. Is the use of Social Media tools a viable source for “crowd control?” Do you think ONE Twitter message from a label exec would have controlled hundreds of screaming teenagers? BTW: Bieber did send out a message himself. Should that have been enough?
  2. Were the police doing the right thing by canceling the event?
  3. Should the police have been more understanding about the man NOT using Twitter and should they have offered another solution?
  4. Is Social Media a viable resource/non-resource to warrant someone’s arrest? Remember the case of the woman who was arrested for POKING someone on Facebook?

OVERARCHING QUESTION(S):

  • Are these social media outlets/tools/resources/whathaveyou being taken too seriously?
  • Should legislation be passed to regulate them?
  • Should it be up to the networks themselves?
  • Who OWNS these things and who has a right to the evidence they provide?

“They” say that once that information is out there it is no longer ours to keep. However, what about the printed word before social media? Newspapers, magazines, books, diaries, leaflets? Did we or do we no longer own that information either? Is it that once something is written down, it is out there to be used against us?

Why can’t people just be positive?!

What do you think? I really want to hear your thoughts on this… because you rock. Yeah, you. Reading this right now. You. You rock.

Word.

photo credit: stephanie bond law.

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I. Was. Tired.

I. Was. Tired.

Well, I’m not training for a full marathon, but yes, I AM training for a half-marathon.¬†And I AM building a business.

I give you this disclaimer: I am neither an expert in building a business nor am I an expert in running or training for a marathon… but I can speak from my personal experiences.

They (I have no idea who “they” are) say that the first two years of starting a business are the hardest. I’ve heard some people say one year, some even say three years. And of course, there are the anomalies who build their business successfully in less than a year. Sometimes less than six months – I am jealous of those people.

I have been a freelance writer and consultant for over 3 years, and I have tried to turn my freelance work into a full-time business for a year. It’s hard. Really hard.

Seemingly-Unrelated-But-I-Have-A-Point: I am training for my first half-marathon. I don’t like to run and in fact, I’m a horrible runner. In high school I played golf, in part so I would never have to run suicides. But running is something that I have always wanted to be good at.

One of my goals for 2010 is to run and complete a half-marathon. That’s 13.1 miles. At first I told myself I would just run and complete a 10K (6.2 miles). But I knew that wasn’t good enough for me. I need to buck up and do it. So I, in 2010, WILL run and complete a half-marathon.

I have been doing short distance runs for a while, but I officially started my training a week ago. Yesterday, I ran the longest I have ever run in my entire life, 3.38 miles in 49:24 minutes. (It was a run/walk tempo run – that’s why it took that long). I pushed through when I didn’t want to and I did it. Now, I only have 17 more weeks of training and about 10 more miles to run.

Back to the topic at hand. Why would I compare building my business to that of training for a marathon? Here’s my rationale.

Building a business is hard work. Training for a marathon is hard work.

No one wakes up one morning and has a successful business that runs itself and makes them the big bucks. No one wakes up one morning and says, “You know, I think I’ll run 13.1 or 26.2 miles today.”¬†People who run a successful business and people who run a successful marathon work hard to achieve those things. Neither of these things come easy.

When I’m working to build my business I work long hours or I work when I really don’t want to. I’ll work when I’m sick, I’ll work when I’d rather be spending the night out with my friends. But I am working to eventually make my business rock.

I hate running. And I hate the cold. Well, it’s almost winter, and I’m going to have to get used to running in the cold. I am sticking to my schedule and running even if I don’t want to. Why? Because nothing is going to get in the way of me achieving my goals.

Both of these things take resources. As I build my business I decide what’s an important resource and what isn’t. I knew I wanted to re-do my blog, and I knew that would cost me money. But I did it because it was important.

BIG UPS and huge thanks to Greg Lee and the Chapel Hill-Carrboro YMCA, I have a gym membership now. I have set myself up with a mobile training program and I am using their facilities to help me along the way.¬†It’s all about using the resources and just asking when something is needed.

The key here is, whether you’re building a business or you’re training for a marathon, you have a process and the key is to stick to that process. Whether you have to blog every day, run every day, go to networking events twice a week, spend money on an important resource – whatever. Find a schedule, find a pattern, and COMMIT.

All of these things take hard work and dedication, but above all, COMMITMENT. If you don’t commit to your goal, you’ll never achieve it. Nothing is going to just “happen” for you.

What do YOU think? Do you have a different analogy you want to throw at me?

Word.

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What is an auto-tune?

From Wikipedia: Auto-Tune is a proprietary audio processor created by Antares Audio Technologies. Auto-Tune uses a phase vocoder to correct pitch in vocal and instrumental performances. It is used to disguise off-key inaccuracies and mistakes, and has allowed singers to perform perfectly tuned vocal tracks without the need of singing in tune.

Basically, if you have ever heard a T-Pain or Kanye West song, you know what an auto-tune is. Well… they have made the auto-tune even better. For reals.

You HAVE to know the Charlie Bit Me video by now. This is 100 times better. Seriously. I honestly think I’ve watched this video about 12 times in a row now. It’s only :28 long. And each second is totally worth it. Enjoy.

As a bonus, enjoy an auto-tuned tribute to the late Billy Mays.

Ahhh it doesn’t get any better than that.

All for now.

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