Archive - Feb 2012

February 29th

Wordless Wednesday



@Fuelfrog 246.2 3.979 9.421, originally uploaded by Aldon.

February 28th

Triberr - Curation or Promotion?

Yesterday, a fellow member of a tribe I'm part of on Triberr posted a message on Twitter saying, "@ahynes1 I notice that you don't approve any of my posts on triberr. Is there a reason for that?" They had sent a similar message to several people in the tribe as well as started a discussion about it on Triberr.

I responded, "The few posts I've seen by you on Triberr did not seem interesting to my audience", to which he replied, "OK I understand. I approve all your stuff whether my audience find it interesting or not. I'll apply the same stadards from now on."

I thanked him for the reply and for changing his approach to tweeting about my blog posts. I don't want people on Triberr tweeting out my posts on a quid pro quo basis. I want them tweeting about my blog posts because they found the blog post interesting and they hope their readers will also find it interesting.

Be a bit of a geek, I like to look at some of the underlying numbers. The person who started this discussion has tweeted about my blog posts several times, but the amount of traffic his tweets have generated have been less than the number of tweets he's posted.

On the other hand, there are some people that have tweeted about my blog posts only about as third as often, but have generated ten times the traffic. Those are the important tweets.

At the same time, if I am more careful about my tweets, my followers on Twitter are more likely to visit the articles I've tweeted about. Even more important, at least to me, is when people Retweet these tweets, or, like them over on Facebook.

When I first joined Triberr, I was very concerned about driving away followers, but by judiciously selecting which posts I highlight, I believe I've done a service to my followers as well as to my fellow tribe members.

When it comes to curation, one of my fellow tribe members is mostly posting indirect links to mainstream stories. Many of them are good links, and I have taken to not approving her posts on Triberr, but instead posting a link to the original story on Twitter and giving her a shout out. In doing this, the Triberr analytics get lost, but it seems like I get a lot of likes on the stories of hers that I've highlighted, so I think everyone is benefiting.

Bottom line: I like Triberr as a tool for finding good articles and curating them. However, I have little use for them in terms of promoting whatever comes across the transom.

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February 27th

#pcwm Connected

Social Media is about connections, and this came home in a few different ways during Podcamp Western Mass. In preparation for Podcamp, everyone recommended bringing lots of business cards and there was a lot of exchanging of business cards taking place there. Also, people wrote their Twitter handles on their name tags and shared them on whiteboards.

Yet a more interesting aspect of connectedness came up at the final session of Podcamp. The discussion was around social activism. One of the concerns I expressed was that many social media social activists end up preaching to their circle of friends, to the choir, or the already converted. How do we break out of these circles?

One aspect is to connect with connectors; people with lots of interests that communicate with people in many different circles. Another way is to focus on the connections between topics. I've been thinking about this a lot in terms of health. Health is related to economics, to racial issues, to access to healthy foods, to neighborhood safety. With that, it is easy to veer off into discussions of homelessness, education, perhaps even the school to prison pipeline.

In terms of food, there is the idea of a food desert, a place where it is hard to access healthy food. Recently, I stumbled across the idea of a Media Deserts. It is based on the idea of a food desert, and the idea has gotten me thinking about how media deserts are connected to health.

I'm not thinking just the relationship between literacy and access to media. I suspect, although I don't have data to show this, that access to news media is related to civic involvement, and I've written before about the correlation between voter turnout and health outcomes.

So, what connections are you making?

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February 25th

#pcwm Debrief

It is Saturday evening. I am home from Podcamp Western Mass. I have had a nice dinner with my family, and before I crash, I want to share a few different thoughts from Podcamp.

1) Carpool! It was an hour an a half drive up to Podcamp. So, I got in touch with Jack Nork, who lives the next town over. We drove up together, and, in many ways, had the first Podcamp session of the day on the way up. We also had a great Podcamp Wrap up session on the way back.

2) One of the rules of Podcamp is that everyone is a rockstar. As always, there were a lot of interesting people at Podcamp. As the number of people I am connected with online grows, I'm finding that events like Podcamp don't fill up my rolodex as much as they used to. I was interested to see that besides a bunch of new Twitter connections, this time, I made some new LinkedIn connections as well.

3) Some of the best discussions are in unexpected places, and there are always new things to learn about. I met with one person who is doing a lot with Evernote and ifttt.com. I've started playing with ifttt and have looked at doing more with Evernote. I'm also taking a new look at Quora, especially in terms of locations and companies. I'm making upgrades to my Quora account. Another tool that I looked at once briefly, and it just didn't click, but this time it did, was Yelp's Monocle.

ifttt is If This Then That. If I post a Foursquare checkin with a photo attached, then send that photo to Flickr as well. If it is 6 PM, send me a text message. If it is going to rain tomorrow, give me a phone call. Looks like there are a lot of things to be done with that and I just need to figure out the best way of configuring things.

As to Monocle, I showed it to Kim as we looked around to see what was available near where we are for bars and restaurants. Looks like a nice upgrade. I'll have to play with it more later when I'm really looking for a place to eat.

Oh, and as a person that has used Tweetchat to follow discussions on Twitter, I have to say that TwitterFountain looks really cool. That's probably enough for right now, with one final note:

4) Keep your eyes open for Podcamp Connecticut. May 12th in New Haven.

Oh, and I didn't go to any sessions that had PowerPoint presentations!

February 24th

#ff #pcwm @redheadeddivak @tgalanis @mmpartee @ChristinePilch @cparizo @AlSantaniello @ron_miller @JulianneKrutka @jcnork @paulb

Tomorrow morning is the fourth Podcamp Western Mass. I made it to the first two, missed the third, and will be heading up to the fourth tomorrow. So, I thought it would be good to highlight some of the people I've met through Podcamp and/or will be going tomorrow.

I'll start from the back of the list. I'll be driving up from Connecticut tomorrow with @jcnork. He lives in the next town over and we run into each other a lot. We're currently working on plans for Podcamp Connecticut, which should take place May 12th. Coming from the same town as @jcnork is @paulbogush. I've run into Paul online and at various events, and I'm glad he'll be heading up to Podcamp Western Mass.

The other eight people are shakers and movers in the Podcamp Western Mass circle. @mmpartee really carries the Podcamp spirit and has been a great help with planning Podcamps in Connecticut as well.

I don't know who will be tweeting what tomorrow, but you can probably catch most of the action on the #pcwm hash tag.