Archive for February, 2011

I think the main thing that governments  and corporations should consider when attempting to influence others is whether or not they are violating the privacy of the people they are trying to influence. I see no problem with governments and corporations doing this in a public forum, but when you go beyond a person’s privacy level, it is going too far. I would have no problem with the government or corporations trying to influence me on Facebook if my privacy settings were adjusted so that everybody could interact with me on Facebook. However, all of my privacy settings for any site that I use are always strict and I rarely have anything I say or do posted as public. If people tried to persuade me while violating my specified privacy settings, I would be outraged. I’m not surprised that governments and corporations do this kind of stuff through the creation of fake accounts. Considering the fact that I don’t accept friend requests from anybody I don’t know, this doesn’t impact me since I would not accept a friend request from a dummy account. However, it does seems like a cheap trick considering they are “dummy” accounts.

Whether it is a corporation or a government doing this stuff doesn’t matter to me. It’s something that can be done by any person or organization. The bottom line is that these aren’t real accounts and therefore, I don’t think anybody should do it. Additionally, the targets of these accounts matter as well. I don’t think any normal law-abiding citizen should be spied on, regardless if they are American or not. I would probably feel differently if they were spying on “foreign foes”, but something tells me that terrorists aren’t creating Facebook profiles for people to find.

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This past summer I had the chance to study abroad in Dublin, Ireland. I did this through Temple’s School of Communications and Theater summer program in Dublin. The program lasted from June 2010 to July 2010. Here is a slide show of some of my favorite pictures from my trip, as well as some brief descriptions.


Malahide Castle – I went here for a day trip during one of the weekends. Malahide is located not too far from Dublin and we got there by train. Malahide Castle itself was alright, but the surrounding area was much more beautiful. I included that shot because I love the contrast of the blue skies and the green grass/trees.
Cliffs of Moher – As part of the program, we had a chance to go to another part of Ireland for a weekend. We decided to go to Galway, which is located on the western coast of Ireland. Galway was a great time and the Cliffs of Moher are a big attraction there. Unfortunately, when I went there was a lot of fog when I first got to the cliffs.
Windmill Lane Studios – This was a cool section of Dublin. Windmill Lane was the old street that U2 used to record their older albums on. The neighborhood is now covered in graffiti and street art. Dublin has a lot of cool street art and I wanted to include this shot because it shows off a great example.
“The Guinness Lake” – I got to see this during a day trip in the Wicklow Mountains. This was a really cool landmark. Can you guess why it’s called “The Guinness Lake”? Hint: the water of the lake is not used in the making of Guinness.
Kilmainham Gaol – This was one of the most unforgettable landmarks in Dublin. Kilmainham Gaol was formerly used as a prison during the British occupation of Ireland until the Irish rebellion. Many Irish rebels were imprisoned and died here. Very moving tour.
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On Thursday, February 10th, Jack Hughes, founder and chairman of Top Coder, Inc., came and spoke to our Social Media Innovation class. The topic of Jack’s speech was ‘The Changing Nature of Work’ and was focused on how the Internet is changing how people work in the modern society. The theme of the speech explored how the Internet is making it possible for people all around the world to work together via the web in order to solve business-related problems. During his speech, Jack showed the class the Top Coder site and show the different ways users can get involved with the site.

The Top Coder site is made up by two different sections, Develop and Design. Develop is for users that are more interested in coding and programming, while Design is for users that are more interested in web or graphic design. I recently registered on the Top Coder Studio, which is the section of the site for Design. Since I don’t have any coding or programming experience, I figured Top Coder Studio was better for me since I have web development experience. I will keep an eye out for any interesting contests post on Top Coder Studios. Hopefully my experience with Top Coder can lend itself well to my future career.

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I think social media gives people the best chance to understand what’s really happening in the world and gives them a great opportunity to get word out during a crisis. In an emergency situation, social media should act as a news aggregator, where many different sources or people can contribute what they see and know to the understanding of the current emergency. There are three different social media tools that would be ideal for emergency situations. Facebook would be good if something happened and you want to inform those within your social circle of the news. Twitter is similar to Facebook, but with Twitter trends, it gets the word out to more people, including local media outlets that follow Twitter trends to learn of news stories. Reddit would be an excellent tool to get the word out to people that aren’t in your social circle or even your area.

If I was in a emergency situation, I would utilize all three of the social media websites that I mentioned. Facebook would be good if I needed to inform my friends and family of the situation. Twitter would be good if I wanted to get details out that weren’t being covered in the local media. I would use Reddit if the situation was something that not many people outside of the local area knew about. This would be good to use if I needed advice or assistance as well as many Redditors are willing to help out during emergency situations, no matter how small or large.

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In his article, Craig Donato discusses how people put a lot of value into the opinions of friends and peers while purchasing something. I must say that I completely agree with Craig, especially on how people approach local businesses nowadays. With social media, people are able to broadcast their opinions to their friends, which will influence how their peers buy things. Local businesses are starting to put much value in social media now that sites, such as Yelp, can help attract customers to their businesses.

In my own personal experience, I have always relied on other people to tell me about new things to buy and new stores to shop at. It allows me to learn about a product through a trusted source and a source that will have much influence over me. For instance, if I am in a new area and I am hungry, I will always ask friends that live around there for recommendations on where to eat. With social media, this process has been made even easier.

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Hey everybody,

So for the third intermediate platform task, we were supposed to add three new plugins to our blogs. This gave us all an opportunity to add more plugins to our blogs in addition to the Google Analytics, which we already set up. For my three new plugins, I chose the following:

  • GD Star Rating — I added this plugin to my blog so that my readers have even more ways to interact with my blog. Interaction between bloggers and their readers are one of the keys to sustaining a successful blog. Please feel free to start rating my posts. I’d love to hear what you think!
  • Google Calendar Widget & Short Code — Enabling this plugin gave me a chance to embed my Google Calendar to the blog. Since I am the Google Ambassador on Temple’s campus, I plan on using the Google Calendar to list any upcoming events on campus. If you’re interested in attending a Google event, please keep an eye on my Google Calendar.
  • Viper’s Video Quicktags — This plugin allows bloggers to easily embed videos from sites such as YouTube, DailyMotion, and Vimeo. I plan on posting a lot of media-related content to this blog, so this plugin will definitely come in handy. Stay tuned for some of my upcoming videos!

I’m really happy with the plugins that I activated. Each of these plugins will make this blog more engaging. Hope you enjoy the new addition. Let me know what you think!

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Hi everybody,

As some of you may remember from the first day of class, my “interesting fact” that I mentioned was that I am one of the Google Ambassadors on Temple’s campus. One of the things that I learned about through my experience as a Google Ambassador is the Google Online Marketing Challenge. The reason that I am writing a post about this is because I think the Online Marketing Challenge would make an excellent addition to the ‘Social Media Innovation Quest.’

In short, the Google Online Marketing Challenge is an academic opportunity for students and their professors to work with small businesses and NGOs in developing an effective online marketing campaign through the use of Google Adwords.

If you think this would be an excellent addition to the class, please check out the link above for more information. The link can tell you any and everything you need to know about the challenge. So this blog post is my formal submission of a task to the Quest. Please leave me a comment telling me what you think about the challenge and if you think it would be a great addition to the Quest.

Colin

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In my opinion, whether or not Facebook should be banned depends on the type of company and what kind of work that company does. I think that it is perfectly fine for companies that deal with very important things, such as money or health, to ban Facebook at their workplace. My reasoning behind that is that if an employee is expected to work at a company that deals with very important, and often private, information, they should not be allowed access to a site that unnecessarily consume their attention. In addition to that, if they are working with very private information, they should not be allowed to access a site that easily allows people to share information with others. It is because of this that I agree with Goldman-Sachs’ decision to deny Facebook access to its employees.

On the other hand, there are certain companies that have no need to ban Facebook. Certain industries, such as the media and entertainment industries, have realized how much social media actually benefits their work. For these industries, it is almost even necessary for them to hire an employee, and sometimes even entire teams, that focuses on the company’s social media presence. These types of industries truly benefit by having the direct connection to their fans that Facebook provides. It would not make sense at all for these companies to ban Facebook.

For me, what it boils down to is if you’re spending time on Facebook at work, you should not be working in a position that requires much responsibility. If you’re working in a position that would not be negatively impacted by Facebook usage, that’s fine. Moderation and self-control will always be the two factors that will really stop somebody from spending too much on Facebook at work. In response to the second question, I most likely would not work at a company that banned Facebook. For what I want to do for a career, I would not want to be in a position where Facebook usage could negatively impact others and their personal information. If anything, I would probably be working in a position that required me to do social media tasks at work.

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