Pinterest demonstrates that social media continue to evolve

Just starting using Pinterest.

My initial forays remind me a little of when I started with twitter – why am I doing this?  But Pinteret looks like it is gathering traction fast.  Interesting to see that there continues to be room in the web2.0 world for new applications, new platforms.  Twitter, Facebook, FourQquare do not service this market.  They may integrate but the founders of Pinterest have found a new angle, a platform allowing users to interact in a different way.

Karlin Lillington’s review in the Irish Times provides an interesting perspective on the emergence of Pinterest.

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Do not track me

Well, looks like public concerns about being tracked, spied on and reported on are beginning to have some impact.

The IT industry is obviously hugely powerful and influential – but people are less and less comfortbale about what is going on.

I have read a lot of stuff suggesting that the f generation are happy to share lots more information – that effectively they are not worried about privacy.  Seems like a lot of tosh to me – given how offended many young people are when casual snaps of them are posted on social networks such as facebook.  Of course it suits MZ to push the line that none of this is an issue – the fact is that it is an issue.

Excellent piece from the Wall Street Journal updating on developments with the large technology companies.  Looks like Google on board to play ball.

 

 

 

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No sign of a slow down in use of social networks

I come across anecdotal evidence of people becoming bored with social networks – suggesting they may shut down their Facebook account, don’t see the point of twitter, etc.  Latest report from Nielsen on the US market firmly gives the lie to this.

The reality appears to be that people are spending more of their online time in social networks.  And that’s not really very surprising – particularly if they are managing their participation in a way which provides them with value e.g. using Twitter to follow particular interests, using Facebook or Google+ to interact with specific groups of people.

I posted the other day on the subject of ‘Friends or Not‘. Social networks are not without their negatives e.g. irrelevant data, self  censorship, etc.  But the plain reality is that they do offer all sorts of ways to present information in context.

Would be interesting to see similar analysis for the local marketplace in Ireland.  I suspect it is not very different.  I think the other day I heard back from a younger family member ‘No I did not get your email, I use facebook’.  Things continue to move on in social networking and instant messaging.

Friends or not?

Jay Baer just beat me to it.  In his case this article seems to have been inspired by the tragedy of a suicide of an online friend.

I’ve blogged on this topic before – the misuse of the word ‘friend’ by social networks such as facebook.

Friendship takes time and lots more.  They develop out of all sorts of situations but they take time.  The trust in a friendship is not built online.  It requires real socialisation – being with people in different situations.  Some friendships last through rows, disappointments, whatever; other friendships dissolve.  And then retrospectively we questions whether it was in fact a friendship.

Baer touches on another interesting point – the self censorship that we exercise in online communities – because the ‘friends’ are not all friends.  And a downside of this is that the communication does not server to promote/ reinforce friendships as a result.

Initially many of used Facebook got friends and blogging, LinkedIn and even twitter for business.  That has since changed radically – a network of 700m+ people (Facebook) is too big to be ignored for potential business advantage.

Baer says that he is going to make a real effort – even at the cost of less online contributions.  I think he is right.

 

 

 

Why is google+ important to google?

Interesting analysis on use of social network id’s to log into other sites.

So perhaps, in spite of much of the inane rubbish posted on social networking sites, these same sites are going to win out because they have become the holders of profiles we use for identifying ourselves across the web.  The analysis is interesting in that it shows that Facebook leads the way – another reason that google needs to win with google+.

 

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Google+ experience of google apps users

Google Appliance as shown at RSA Expo 2008 in ...
Image via Wikipedia

I am an avid user of web 2.0 solutions – in particular social networks including linkedin, facebook and twitter.  First impressions of google+ have been positive – seems to me to support, more easily, useful interaction between people sharing an interest.  Circles appears pretty logical.  Obviously uptake is very important (to obtain critical mass) but the level of uptake in the first few weeks would suggest google+ certainly has a good chance of gaining significant traction.

However – I am a google apps, paid-up, user.  google apps is at the centre of my day to day operations.

Not unusally I started with a gmail account and move to google apps as I established my own domain: http://www.barryjogorman.com.  I have a google profile – associated with my gmail account.  I do not have a google profile within the google apps world.  People interact with me using whatever medium suits them: facebook, linkedin, twitter, gmail, my google apps mail account, SMS, voice.  And now some level of interaction has commenced via google+.

Unfortunately, in order to be active in google+ I have to be logged into my gmail world – not my google apps world.  It’s almost becoming a question of accessing the google apps world from the PC and the google plus world from the smart phone – complete nonsense!

This posting seems to contain the current wisdom from Google: we hear you, we knew this would be an issue, we’ll get there because it is important to us – but it may take a few months.

 

For now it seems to be a question of ‘grin and bear it’.  Any solutions/ tips would be very welcome!

 

 

 

 

 

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Manage or be managed

instant messaging sites
Image by Will Lion via Flickr

Read Alex Pang’s piece on contemplative computing – courtesy of this article from ReadWriteWeb.  Fits in with much of the discussion taking place across lots of enterprises – is IM, social networking, blogging contributing very much to the business?  Surely IM (now often including video) is just another distraction to people who should be getting on with ‘the task at hand’.

As an individual consultant and researcher I am constantly required to manage the distractions – notwithstanding that were there no distractions there would be no interaction and no work.  The debate reminds me of something about 10 years ago – we should not let the team have internet access because they will waster their time surfing.  We seem to have moved on from this because, thankfully, in many cases the web has become a way fo doing work, communicating, researching, whatever.

I don’t think the answer has changed.  You have to work out what you are trying to do and figure out how to use the available resources.  If you expect to gain from online interaction then you need to recognise that it is a two way street – you will need to be active (or at least be responsive) in order to gain.  When you need to work in a quiet, non distracted mode, you need to make yourself unavailable.

Business has changed.  It’s not just the desk based personnel who are being bombarded by distractions.  Smartphones mean that anyone can be online at any time.  Education in the workplace has not caught up – people need training, awareness and guidance on tools which they can use to assist them in managing the online world rather than being managed by the online world.

 

 

 

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Per Steve Blank now in another bubble

When you hear about potential multi billion offers for relatively new companies being turned down and when you read about valuations around some of the social networks it is hard not to believe that it’s bubble time again.

Now, perhaps when you’ve just lived through an awful property bubble, as we have in Ireland, you tend to be looking for bubbles.

However I think Steve Blank’s comments are well worth reading and considering.

Last time we had the major internet bubble we had lots of companies with losses.  Now, we may actually have lots fo companies with profits – but how many of them are sustainable?

 

 

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Why do I use LinkedIn?

Image representing LinkedIn as depicted in Cru...
Image via CrunchBase

I have been asked recently to discuss with a range of business people my reasons for using LinkedIn – what I like (or don’t like) about LinkedIn.

LinkedIn is the preferred social network of business people.  It is an excellent platform for me, as an independent consultant,  to provide detail about my skills, experience and interests.  Simultaneously it offers me excellent background information on other people and companies – be they clients, potential clients, competitors.

I have taken an incremental approach to using LinkedIn.  I started with basic detail and over a period of time have expanded this to provide more information about my previous experience, current areas of interest.  I have built my network incrementally – seeking introductions to some people, responding selectively to requests to LinkIn.

I have used a range of functionality offered on the site, including:

  • tags to tag/ categorise my contacts e.g.
  • polls to research specific topics with my connections
  • Answers to find answers to particular technical areas
  • Participated in groups of internet e.g. semantic web, business networks such as Kilmacud Crokes Business Network
  • Search to obtain background information prior to meetings – at both individual and corporate levels
  • Jobs to post job offers
  • the WordPress application to cross post from this blog to my LinkedIn profile.

Finally I have cross referenced from various sites which I maintain to my LinkedIn profile.

 

 

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