Is the term “social media” moot? Steve Rubel thinks so, but a majority of his commenters, including some names you’d recognize, beg to differ. I’d love to hear your opinion. Are the lines blurred to the point there should no longer be a distinction? Fellow BBC bloggers (and others as well), what do you have to say?
About Contributor Paul Chaney
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Business Blog Consulting’s founder, Rick Bruner, hasn’t been seen or heard from lately, at least not here. I was beginning to wonder if he still existed. Lo and behold, I found he does. His name is attached to a new report released this month by DoubleClick, where he serves as Director of Research.
The report, titled Influencing the Influencers: How Online Advertising and Media Impact Word of Mouth (PDF), talks about how marketers can make use of word-of-mouth marketing by “influencing the influencers,” those whose buying decisions tend to have greater impact on friends, family, and associates than others.
When I opened Bloglines the other day to check my feeds I saw a notice about an opening for a director position to oversee future development of the app.
The Federal Trade Commission yesterday said that companies engaging in word-of-mouth marketing, in which people are compensated to promote products to their peers, must disclose those relationships.
In a staff opinion issued yesterday, the consumer protection agency weighed in for the first time on the practice. Though no accurate figures exist on how much money advertisers spend on such marketing, it is quickly becoming a preferred method for reaching consumers who are skeptical of other forms of advertising.
I’ve ranted about the PayPerPost, need for full-disclosure debacle a couple of times and have one more such rant in me, which I’m considering posting here later this week. However, if the FTC steps in, it may make my harangue moot. More to follow on this I’m sure.
I’m sure most of the readers of this blog know technology consultant and business advisor Dave Taylor. He is a fellow blogger here at BBC as well.
One of Dave’s blogs, AskDaveTaylor.com, has been nominated for a very prestigious award as the Best Technology Blog in the 2006 Weblog Awards. If he wins, Dave will beat out the likes of tech blog notables as Gizmodo, Slashdot, and TechCrunch.
While those other blogs are certainly award worthy, I look at it this way. Dave Taylor has contributed more intellectual capital to the storehouse of business blogging knowledge than just about anyone I know. He is a master teacher who can explain technically complicated matters in a way that make sense to even the most nascent. Conversely, he is never belittling toward those of us who ask the simplest of questions. That is the mark of a true statesman and gentleman. Dave is both.
At the recent Blog Business Summit in Seattle, I had the privilege of attending a session where Dave was a panelist. I was amazed at the ease and fluidity with which he presented his ideas. Dave spoke as one having a deep knowledge and understanding of his subject. It was a privilege to sit under his tutelage.
Real masters of their craft are few and far between. Dave Taylor is one such artisan. For that reason, I urge you to cast your vote for AskDaveTaylor.com. And, if you’re so inclined, because the award hosts allow you to cast votes every 25 hours, do so repeatedly.
Debbie Weil, author of the The Corporate Blogging Book, is interviewing Des Walsh, editor of the new Business and Blogging blog, part of the b5media network, today on her internet radio show, The Corporate Blogging Show.
The program airs today at 12 noon pacific and is being streamed live. You can download it later if you don’t catch it live.
Des says it won’t be tech-talk or “how to make money from blogging,” but about how he and others have used blogs to build their business (Which would be just about everyone who contributes to this site.).
Steve Rubel shares some stats today regarding the growing prevalence of spam blogs, otherwise known as splogs. Citing a UMBC eBiquity Research Group study it appears that up to 75% of pings to blog ping servers are from these thorns in the blogosphere’s flesh.
Steve addresses the issue head on with the question, "Does anyone care…?" I’m sure people do, but if so, where’s the outcry? Other than Mark Cuban that is. Perhaps splogs have not sullied the reputation of the blogosphere to the degree that something obviously has to be done. But, from a marketing standpoint, I don’t know of any other tactic that could turn marketers off to using blogs than splogs and I challenge us to take a proactive approach. And I’d really like to know what other BBC contributors think.
I’ve been doing some personal musing for a while now over exactly at what point bloggers stopped using the dotorg domain extension and started using the dotcom one. Let me explain.
It seems to me at least some of the more longstanding blogs (or blog-related sites) used org. Case-in-point, Jeremy Wright’s Ensight blog, the Threadwatch blog, and Movable Type’s site. Now, I realize this might be a silly thing to think about, and that it might have been due to nothing more than the dotcom domain was already taken. If so, stop reading. But, I think there is a deeper question here and the BBC site is an appropriate one to discuss it.
It is this: At what point did the paradign shift take place from when blogs were viewed as a purist medium for self expression and become used for commercial purposes? It’s stating the obvious to suggest such a shift has taken place. Perhaps it was gradual, a Gladwellian tipping point sort of thing. But, was there a seismic shift and, if so, when did it occur? If there are any blog historians or anthropologists reading this, I’d enjoy your answer to the question.
With all the newbie bloggers there are out there, it seems to me there might be a need for a book (an essay at least) on the history of blogging. Though blogging has morphed, in that it is being used for a number of purposes now, the essence of it remains the same and we don’t, in my view, need to lose touch with the past just because we are embracing the future.
Weblogs Inc founder Jason Calacanis is taking BuzzMachine blogger Jeff Jarvis to task over something he said in a recent post about blog networks. Jeff argues that the internet "kills networks," particularly what he refers to as "permanent, closed networks" (though he doesn’t go into detail about what those are). Calacanis literally bites his head off in rebuttal. I love a good blogosphere fight! We haven’t had one in a while.
I have a close friend and fellow business blogger who lost her jewelry store to a fire on November 1st, just at the start of the holiday selling season. Her name is Patti Thompson.
Here’s the cool thing, Patti has blogged the entire incident, along with the story of her rebuilding process, on her blog at DiamondDivaOnline.
There are a number of remarks I could make about her willingness to do this, not the least of which is that it represents a vital way blogs can be used to communicate with customers and others — blogging during times of crisis, chronicling the entire process on a blog for all the world to see. She’s done it with genuine openness and transparency too, which in my estimation represents the highest ideals to which we bloggers aspire.
Let me make a simple request. If you’re a business blogger, why not write a post retelling Patti’s story. It is indeed one worth telling. Oh, and don’t pity her. She’s a real trooper, both stalwart and optimistic, determined to "rise from the ashes" and rebuild her business better than before. Knowing her, I have no doubt she’ll do just that. You’ll know too, because she will blog it all.
Denise Wakeman turned me on to this earlier today. Tom Evslin, the guy who invented VOIP technology (I think), is writing a novel and posting each chapter as it’s written to a blog. It’s called blooks – online books distributed on blogs.
This takes the Naked Conversations approach one step further and, so far as I’m aware, he’s the first to actually upload chapters as they’re being written. You can download them at no cost too.
Denise tells me that doing this actually increases sales of the book once it’s printed. She indicates people see the book as a "souvenir." After all, who’s going to download the entire book? (Other than me that is.)
Yet another innovative use of blogs.
Every now and again some journalist writes something that really just gets my dander up. Such is the case with an article written by Sean Carton at Publish.com, Beware the Fads of the Future. You want to know what he’s calling a fad? (His term is "future fad.") Blogs for one. Add to that video, podcasting, RSS and social networking software.
I admit I’m an adherent of Web 2.0 (I’m guessing he’s not), and each one of the "future fads" he mentions are components of this internet iteration. I want to give Sean the benefit of the doubt. After all, he’s been around the net a lot longer than me. Even though he’s considered a notable futurist where it comes to web trends, I just feel he’s speaking from an outside looking in perspective. Even "futurists" can be wrong. (BTW, I write about this with greater derision on my own site. I’m just trying to be nice here.)
The funniest thing about the article is that, just to the right of the headline, is a banner that says "What is Web 2.0? Web 2.0 isn’t about technology, it’s a call to action. Take a look at the Web’s most exciting new developments." Exciting new developments or "future fads." Publish.com, which is it? We know where Sean stands on the subject.
I don’t mean God actually blogs, but that there is a bloggercon going on right now called Godblog. It’s happening at Biola University even as I speak. In fact, one of our very own bloggers, LaShawn Barber (See her blogs here and here) is a featured speaker. (So, why isn’t she talking about it instead of me? Hmmm.)
In case you’re not familiar with the religious end of the blogosphere, it’s big, especially among evangelicals. Hugh Hewitt is a name many people would recognize. He’s one of the Godblog superstars.
Got a book inside of you? You don’t need to start from stratch to write it. The content may already be there on your blog. If it is, you might want to enter Lulu’s Blooker Prize 2006 contest.
Lulu provides print on demand publishing services and many bloggers have taken advantage of their service. BTW, they call blog books, "blooks." (These are not necessarily books about blogging, but books written from blog content.) Lulu offers its services free, making its money on each sale.
They offer prizes in three categories: Fiction, non-fiction, and comics. Prizes will be awarded April of next year.
I’ve been head over heels about wikis for a while now. But, for most of us, they’ve been less than useful partially because they’re still too "geeky." At least, they have been for me. Well, those days are over. 37Signals, the company that brought you Basecamp, has rolled out Writeboard, a truly easy-to-use wiki.
I won’t go into detail here, but I do invite you to read my glowing review of the app on my blog. Trust me, you’ll like Writeboard. Like the rest of 37Signal’s products it’s an easy-to-use software application that really works.
Yahoo! has just unveiled their new quasi blog search engine. I say "quasi" because, unlike Google’s blog search engine, their combines blogs and news on one page. News items show up center column and blog results are in a right-hand column sidebar, with the most recent posts being returned first (Technorati-style). The blog returns Flickr photos as well.
Blogspotting’s Stephen Baker makes a good point. He says, "[T]his is one more sign that the mainstream and bloggers are swimming in the same pool of data." The line between blogs and mainstream content is getting fuzzier.
Yahoo! is pulling content from the over 750,000 blogs in their MyYahoo! database, so it’s a good idea to get your blog indexed if it’s not already.
With all the talk about AOL’s purchase of Weblogs, Inc., this might have gone under the radar, but Verisign has purchase Dave Winer’s Weblogs.com for a paltry $2 million. Seems that if you have a domain that includes the term "weblogs" you’re pretty hot property these days. Heh.
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