Tag Archives: Facebook

Personal Branding though Social Media Profile Fields

20 Aug

Or, defining the rules by which we define ourselves

The Open Web Identity is the Platform by Matthew Burbee

Photo credit to Matthew Burbee

Forms and fields are nothing new.  We’ve always had to fill out employment applications and census forms by reducing our lives to just the words that could fit in the blanks or the choices for the check boxes provided.  But they were one off forms, which were then buried in drawers, not published for the world to see.

Social networking is changing that.  Now, we’re filling out forms about ourselves every day and making the information public to our friends, family, and the internet at large.  (And they’re public not in the sense of public records, but in the sense of “Hey, you guys!”)  Facebook, LinkedIn, etc. have made the rules of our personal brands.  They’ve told us you need a picture, you need a job title, you need an education history.  Without these and other fields filled in, your profile (really your personal brand) is suspect.  Continue reading

Infographics show Facebook is taking over

15 Jun

An article on Social Times combining infographics, Facebook, and social media trends?!  Obviously this is terribly exciting.   If you come here often, you know that infographics (especially interactive ones) are one of my favorite parts of the internet. (Other people search for porn, I search for infographics.   What can I say?) Continue reading

There are three things in life you can’t escape — death, Facebook, and taxes

8 Jun

Graph showing amount of dead people with Facebook AccountsAt work the other day, I was working on a presentation about social media, its various mediums, and their uses.  While searching (in vain) for a clear graphic showing a change in the age demographics of Facebook users (Yes, I know, boring.  But, the point of this presentation is that, you, too, Mr. 50-year-old CPA, can do social networking), I came across this post on the growing number of Facebook accounts for the deadContinue reading

Civilizing Facebook

1 Jun

Original Civilization video game boxHow did I miss this news?!  Civilization is coming to Facebook!  (And now you’re probably like, what, Facebook is the bane of civilization and is ruining our culture and ability to communicate effectively and to interact with each other.)  No, Civilization with a capital C.  Civilization the video game.  Probably the only game I’ve ever actually loved.  (Although Super Mario 3 for Super Nintendo may be up there.) Continue reading

The Like Button Turns One (Happy Birthday!)

11 May

Facebook Like Icon - Thumbs Up, Number 1Okay, so I am about a little late covering this, but that doesn’t make the news any less interesting, right?  Facebook’s Like Button turned one year old on April 22.  According to SocialMedia.biz:

In one year, more than 2.5 websites have integrated Facebook’s like button on their websites, giving Facebook the ability to not only gather information about its users on its own site but also gather information about them from all over the Internet. In this manner, Facebook had conquered the Web.

Aragog coming out of his lair with Harry Potter and Ron WeaslyI’m just going to assume that that means 2.5 million websites… When Facebook started, it was its own walled garden.  What happens on Facebook, stays on Facebook, so to speak.  But, in recent years, Facebook has expanded its footprint and, through like and share, begun to spread itself across the web.  I like to think of Facebook as a giant spider growing ever bigger and taking over larger and larger parts of the web.  (Get it, web?)  You know, like Aragog…

Anyway, about the Like Button… As SociaMedia explains, clicking the like button isn’t really about liking the status (in that you enjoy it), but about giving feedback.  It’s the easiest way of acknowledging a friend’s status update.  Explaining the Like Button and its role in giving feedback, SocialMedia really explains social networking in general. Continue reading

You Tweet What You Eat

3 May

SocialTimes has an article today (Sorry, You Ate 500 Calories Over Your Limit Today — Foodzy Turns Dieting Into A Game) about Foodzy, a new social media-based app that allows users to track their food consumption and share their successes in their diets with their social network.  According to SocialTimes, “Foodzy rewards you for making healthy choices or fun eating habits with badges.”  I guess this is better than the shaming suggested at the Slate event, but I still don’t think that I want updates about everything I eat going to all of my Facebook friends.  Unfortunately, you can’t sign up for Foodzy yet, so you’re all going to have to wait a while for status updates like “Maggie ate oatmeal with Craisins and way too much brown sugar and half-n-half.”  (Really, everything is better with half-n-half.) Continue reading

Rock, I mean Like, the Vote

1 May

Today SocialTimes introduced me to Likester, a new site which keeps track of real time trends on social media sites, particularly Facebook.  (Think of it as following hash tags to the nth degree.)  Although Likester also allows users to see trends within their group of friends, it’s bigger (and cooler) impact is in allowing people to understand what’s going on globally (and instantaneously).  As they say in About Likester:

What people are liking right now is really interesting, and worth calling out and celebrating. It’s usually very different from what they’ve liked since the beginning of time. Whatever trends are happening, anywhere in the world, you’ll likely be able to find evidence of them here. While we won’t attempt to explain them, some research likely would. You can filter trends by time period, such as “today”, and you can further filter by category (“People”, or “Websites”), as well as by any combination of city, state, or country. So you can see what restaurants are hot in Paris, France today. Or what websites people like this month in Seattle, Washington, United States. The possibilities are endless.

You all know how enthusiastic I am about the archival of the Internet.  But, this is even better, because it’s happening in real time and can have real time implications.  According to Social Times:

Do you want to be on top of the latest American Idol predictions? Then head over to Likester because the web site has successfully predicted the bottom three contestants on American Idol, as well as successfully predicting that Stefano Langone would be eliminated. 

Admittedly, that’s a silly example of Likester’s power.  But, swap picking the losing candidates of American Idol for picking the losing candidates of a national election and you’ll see the impact that Likester can have.  It allows for real time data about what people actually think and like (or at least what they want their friends to think that they think and like…), which has got to be better than the lies that they tell to pollsters.

Likester (and the million other services like it that are soon to be with us) will allow us to see what amounts to polling data instantaneously and probably to get predictions of returns way before the news networks are able to announce them.  (I always get my results online anyway – way faster, especially for local things, to go directly to the county Board of Elections sites and do a little bit of math.) Continue reading

Social Media and the Fear of Missing Out, Part Two

16 Apr

A few weeks ago, I wrote a post called “Social Media and the Fear of Missing Out”.  And, lo and behold, the NY Times covered the same thing last week (“Feel Like a Wallflower?  Maybe It’s Your Facebook Wall”).  (For purposes of this article making sense, be aware that the Times sometimes abbreviates this to FOMO.)  I love Jenna Wortham’s opening to the piece:

One recent rainy night, I curled up on my couch with popcorn and Netflix Instant, ready to spend a quiet night at home. The peace was sweet — while it lasted. Soon, my iPhone began flashing with notifications from a handful of social networking sites, each a beacon of information about what my friends were doing.

As the alerts came in, my mind began to race. Three friends, I learned, had arrived at a music venue near my apartment. But why? What was happening there? Then I saw pictures of other friends enjoying fancy milkshakes at a trendy restaurant. Suddenly, my simple domestic pleasures paled in comparison with the things I could be doing.

This.  So much.  Sometimes I try to ban myself from my laptop when I’m watching a movie because I know I won’t enjoy it if I’m distracted by all of the “better” things that everyone else is doing.  (Generally, I fail at enforcing the ban.)

But, it goes beyond doubting that what you’re doing in the moment isn’t good enough.  It also leads to doubting what you’re doing with your life.  A friend of mine turned 32 this week.  She’s a lawyer – smart and independent.  In the last year, she’s moved to a new city, started a new job, and made new friends.  All in all, I’d say it’s been a pretty successful year.  But on her birthday she was bummed.  Why?  Well, because her Facebook friends were all posting pictures of their new husbands, new houses, and new babies, and suddenly her accomplishments didn’t seem like nearly enough.

Ms. Jenner also recognizes this bigger problem:

A friend who works in advertising told me that she felt fine about her life — until she opened Facebook. “Then I’m thinking, ‘I am 28, with three roommates, and oh, it looks like you have a precious baby and a mortgage,’ ” she said. “And then I wanna die.”

On those occasions, she said, her knee-jerk reaction is often to post an account of a cool thing she has done, or to upload a particularly fun picture from her weekend. This may make her feel better — but it can generate FOMO in another unsuspecting person.

I’m completely guilty of posting things that make my life seem cool, or at least busy.  (And now you’re thinking, “Maggie, your newfeed doesn’t make your life seem cool.  If you think that’s the cool version of your life, your life must be really lame”.  And now I’m feeling bad…)  But, let’s be honest, we use social media to present idealized versions of ourselves.  No one posts pictures of their babies crying in the middle of the night.  People don’t post about the days it rained on their vacation.  And I don’t update my status to tell you that it’s eight o’clock and I’m getting ready for a thrilling evening of Law & Order in my pajamas.  (Although secretly, those are some of my favorite evenings.)

MaggieCakes is a blog about culture, social media, and what’s new in the world of Internet culture. Every day (okay, I try for every day) I comb blogs and news outlets for the news about internet culture and social media to bring them to you (with my commentary, of course) here on MaggieCakes. MaggieCakes is hosted by WordPress and often draws upon Slate, Jezebel, The Hair Pin, and SocialTimes for links and inspiration. My post Social Media and the Art of Storytelling was featured on freshly pressed, bringing a while new readership to my blog. Find anything interesting in the worlds of culture or social media that you’d like to see a post on? Leave a comment or send me an e-mail at 2maggieotoole@gmail.com.

Roses are Red, Violets are Blue, Social Media is…?

28 Mar

I recently came across this post about “Hipster Crayolas“, including colors such as “Been Done Black” and “Jaded Green”.  This got me thinking, what would be the color for social media?

“Forget-Me-Not Blue”, Obviously!

Is Social Media making us less social? Or, say “Hi” in coffee shops.

27 Mar

Convince and Convert has a post titled “Is Wi-Fi Making You Anti-Social?”  It poses the question “Will wireless Internet use facilitate greater engagement with co-located others or encourage a form of “public privatism?”

Unfortunately, right now we seem to be veering toward “public privatism”.  Constant access to our social networks and the people that we already know is turning us off from chance meetings and pleasant interactions with strangers.  Generally, they focus on interactions at coffee shops, and the fact that everyone is so busy chatting on Facebook that they don’t take the time to meet the people sitting across the table from them.

As someone who often takes my laptop to Starbucks, I know that I’m guilty of this.  Usually, I politely smile at the people near me as I sit down.  We all put in our head phones and stare into our laptops and then do the polite nod as we get up to leave.  Although I admit that I’m part of the problem, I do miss the community of the local coffee shop at college.  It was a place that encouraged conversations; I met so many wonderful people there.  (Seriously, if you’re in Athens, go to Donkey.)

But, back to wi-fi making us less social.  I think the problem’s actually bigger than this.  When I walk around my neighborhood (I’m trying to learn my way around – it’s embarrassing to get lost ½ mile from where you live.) I keep my headphones in, and most of my neighbors do the same.  We do the polite nod when we pass.  (Apparently I do a lot of polite nodding.)  The only people who break this lack of real communication are small children, who love to yell “Hi” and then “I saw you there” (with an emphatic point) when you pass them again.  And, I have to say, it’s nice to be interrupted.  So, if you see me in a coffee shop, even if I have my headphones on, feel free to say hi.

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