November 25, 2008

Android Gets Mini, iPhone Gets Demographics

The Android powered T-Mobile G1 is getting Opera Mini 4.2 beta, says ZDNet’s Matthew Miller, which is good news since Opera offers nice synchronization options. This is something of a rebuke to Apple who stopped Opera Mini for iPhone since it competes with the built-in Safari browser. Or not, since Apple wants to control the iPhone with the Iron Fist of Jobs.

Speaking of the G1 and iPhone, the former will ship in 1 million by the end of 2008 according to HTC (via), and the latter now knows who uses it. A Compete.com survey tells us more or less what we already anticipated about the iPhone users. Check out The Apple Blog for more, and a nifty little illustration as well.

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Gawker Media Continues to Break Traffic Records

Recession or no, people surely won’t stop reading the Gawker Media sites, and as long as Denton & Co. can continue to sell ads on a CPM basis, they should be able to ride this one through. October is another record high, according to the network site, clocking in at 297 million pageviews, and 22 million unique visitors. Crazy.

More at the Gawker Media site, and over at Quantcast.

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November 24, 2008

Exploring Social Media: Do You Know How to Use the Social Web?

Exploring Social Media article series badgeAs more and more of my clients discover the terms social media and social web, they ask me how to use this new Web 2.0 concept of social. They are surprised when I ask them a few questions and find out they are already a part of the social web.

Here are my questions:

  • Do you have and use email?
  • Do you have a blog or website?
  • Do you allow comments on your blog?
  • Do you have a forum?
  • Are you on MySpace and/or Facebook?
  • Do you Twitter or use a similar interactive, microblog program or service?
  • Do you bookmark sites through Delicious, StumbleUpon, Digg, or other services?

Then you’re a part of the social web. You’re using social media tools to communicate with others. So you know how to use the social web, right?

As discussed in “Exploring Social Media: Start With the Basics,” the basic social media tools are probably things you are already using. Using the social web means understanding how to use the tools to get your message across. read more

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Would You Tweet Spam Friends To Pay The Rent? (Be-A-Magpie)

Filed as News with 3 comments

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Just when you thought you saw the last of the PayPerPost copycats (who reincarnated themselves into IZEA), it looks like another company wants to pay users to insert various ads within their Twitter stream.

(Be-A-Magpie) Advertisers create campaigns providing a message and some keywords. Matching twitterers are selected, costs are calculated based on # of followers and hotness of the topic. Ads will be blended into the message stream: 5 tweets, one ad, 5 tweets, one ad…

Ironically Be-A-Magpie seems to be following the initial footsetps of IZEA by not requiring users to provide disclosure or even warn twitter followers that the tweet is an ad (say for example by posting [SPONSORED] within the tweet). read more

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WordPressDirect: Blogging Tool or Spam Engine?

A recent post on Mashable regarding a tool called WordPress Direct elicited a great deal of passion on both sides. One commenter, for example, called the service a “one stop shop spam blog engine” while another, who claims to have used the service, said it was “a simple solution to adding new posts to a blog in between longer, hand written posts”.

But what is clear is that tools like WordPress Direct are becoming more and more common. Part of the double-edged nature of open source development is that, while most will use the license to extend the product in healthy ways, a few will do so in ways that can be used for unethical purpose. Though this is not an argument against open source, more and more tools like WordPress Direct have sprung up, often charging high monthly fees for “maintenance free” blogging.

But what does WordPress Direct do and is it a spam tool? The answer is complicated and made more so by the fact that the nature of spam and even the definition of spam is a moving target. However, it is clear that WordPress Direct, along with similar products, have a lot of potentially dangerous uses and, if its marketing is any indication, those uses are very much by design. read more

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Movable Type Monday: TypePad Connect, vpod.tv, Layout Switching, and More

Filed as Features with 1 comment

Happy Monday, folks! The biggest Movable Type-related news this week was the release of TypePad Connect, a service from Six Apart that combines a Disqus-style comment system with MyBlogLog-like profiles. TypePad profiles extend the existing TypeKey service and allow you to connect it with your other social networking sites, turning it into a lifestream of sorts. TypePad comments supports OpenID login and has TypePad anti-spam built in. TypePad Connect will integrate with any MT blog, and it works with other blogging systems as well. More features are on the way, including the ability to import comments into your existing comment system.

I’ll admit, I’ve never personally seen a need for a hosted commenting system like this, but Disqus has become quite popular, and now 6A is entering the market. Have you had any experience with one of these systems? Let us know in the comments.

Plugins

vpod.tv — Six Apart Europe announced the release of a plugin that integrates vpod.tv into your MT blog. With this plugin you can upload video to your site and have it published on vpod.tv. The press release makes it sound like it should be available now, but I haven’t found it available for download anywhere. read more

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Shaq’s Tweeting Away

NBA superstar Shaquille O’Neal is the latest in the celebrity line of spokesperson’s for Twitter. As the story goes, he started tweeting since someone was impersonating him on Twitter, and he is obviously enjoying himself:

“Somebody out there was trying to use my language and trying to speak for me,” O’Neal, sounding more amused than offended, said Wednesday night in a telephone interview. “Rather than have that happen, I thought I’d do it myself.”

Check out the good natured fake Shaq tweets that started it all, and follow Shaq himself if you’re into his funky way of dishing out words. Naturally, you should also follow the Blog Herald on Twitter.

Hat tip, Silicon Alley Insider and Twitter blog.

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Boing Boing Goes Offworld, Launches Videogames Blog

OffworldOffworld is the latest blog in the Boing Boing network, and it is all about computer and videogames. Edited by Brandon Boyer, a familiar name for some of us that used to hail the Edge mag, it is bound to be something interesting. At least I hope so, and Boyer’s welcome post promises a lot:

As Offworld lifts off over the coming weeks and months, I’ll be bringing to it a focus on the overlooked, the underappreciated, the rise of the independents and, in general, the games that are bringing genuine excitement and innovation (in both gameplay and design) to the industry.

Focusing on the indie games is a nice call if you ask me. There’s a lot of games developed by small studios out there, some are crap, some decent, and a few pretty innovating. read more

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List Posts: Lazy Linkbait or Great Resource

Usually I’m no fan of these list posts. Granted, they take quite some time to put together, but they’re not really adding anything new to the conversation, other than links. That being said, a good list of interesting blogs, like the 100 blogs that will make you smarter post on OnlineUniversities.com, can really help you find some new daily reads.

What do you think about list posts? Is it just linkbait, or do they have a an actual right to exist in the ideal blogosphere? Share your thoughts in the comments.

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November 21, 2008

Sarah Palin Blasts Media Not Just Bloggers

When asked in an interview with Sarah Palin on FoxTV, her first public interview after the election, if there were false allegations made that needed to be addressed, and Sarah Palin blames the media, with a minor slap against bloggers that is making the rounds of the blogosphere.

…if the media had taken one step further and investigated a little bit, not just gone on some blogger – probably sitting there in their parent’s basement, wearing their pajamas, blogging some kind of gossip or lie regarding, for instance, the discussion of who is Trig’s real mom…and that was in mainstream media, the question that was asked, instead of just coming to me and setting the record straight. And when I tried to correct that – that yeah, I’m truly Trig’s mother – to take days for everything to have been corrected…

Rumors are flying around that she is attacking and judging bloggers. While she does make a sweeping generalization about bloggers, one that we bloggers deal with daily, her point is to actually take the media to task for using blogs as a source of fact and fiction. read more

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