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March 12, 2009

Exploring Social Media: Security and Monocultures

Exploring Social Media article series badgeF-secure reports on security vulnerabilities with Adobe Reader and Foxit Reader for reading PDF files.

While this could be seen as another day-in-the-life update, the warning came with an interesting twist:

Do note that while we are recommending users move away from Adobe Reader, we are not recommending any particular replacement.

…Instead, we recommend users to find their own Adobe Reader replacement.

This way we get more heterogeneous userbase, which is a good idea security-wise. Nobody wants to repeat what happened with the great IE —> Firefox switch. As 40% of users switched to Firefox, about 40% of the attacks switched to target Firefox.

Monocultures are bad.

In the new world of online social, more and more people using the same tools, putting us all at risk as hackers and attackers move towards the natural migration of popularity. Monocultures are bad as they open the door to mass risks. read more

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January 14, 2009

Measuring the Curse of Social Media Tools

Exploring Social Media article series badgeAs part of my ongoing series on exploring social media tools, I’d like to take a look at the usage of curse words on the web, specifically those tracked by .

Adult Content Warning: The following includes words that may offend some. Consider yourself warned.

A lot of SEO and web strategies specialists spend a lot of time tracking keywords, search terms, hashtags, and other frequently used words and phrases across the web, especially those used in social media tools. takes this research a step further. read more

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December 31, 2008

Exploring Social Media: Live Citizens Press Conference on Twitter

Exploring Social Media article series badgeYesterday, was used as a real-time news conference podium by the Consulate General of Israel in New York and featured on their Israel news and commentary blog, . In this ongoing series on Exploring Social Media and Social Media Tools, the politics in issue are not up for discussion, but the manner in how this popular social media tool was used to great a Q&A forum for discussion of a current event is worth discussing.

Called a Citizens’ “Press” Conference on Twitter, from 1300 – 1500 EST on December 30, David Saranga, Israel Consul of Media and Public Affairs in New York, answered questions regarding the situation in the Middle East regarding Israel and Gaza and all parties involved. Questions were submitted to their Twitter account, @IsraelConsulate and attempts were made to respond to the questions through the 140 character limit, with those requiring lengthy answers would be posted on the blog.

There were no rules, other than the typical “play nice” and all questions were welcome from any and all angles. While Mr. Saranga was the host of the Twitter event, I’m sure he had a lot of help from his staff at the Consulate to respond to the flood of questions.

Twitter example during Israel Gaza Press Conference by Israel Consulate of New York

Within a very short time, the “edited” version of the Twitter conference was posted in sections on the Israel Politik blog. They explained what they meant by “edited” as: read more

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November 18, 2008

Exploring Social Media: Social Means Personal

Exploring Social Media article series badgeIn “Duke DesRochers: Future Social Media Renaissance Man,” I introduced my cousin, Duke DesRochers, highlighting his fun cooking show audition tape as a great example of how to market with social media in mind.

With the advent of blogs, YouTube, podcasts, and online social media tools that allow anyone to publish anything they want within the law, everyone could become their own entertainment production company, putting the masses in charge of not only being the entertainment, but providing it.

With inexpensive video equipment and software, and an innate sense of comedy, drama, and style, Duke DesRochers has an intuitive way of bringing the “common man” into his audition video that I hope will gain the attention of the judges. It’s time to go back to the real people, rather than the exaggerated people, to find the humility and fun in entertainment. We need to get people thinking, “Hey, that’s me! I can do that!”

Another part of Duke DesRochers I want to celebrate with you is how he took two fairly diverse passions, and molded them into one specialty to totally redefine himself for this video audition for the Food Network: handyman in the kitchen.

As part of this ongoing series on Exploring Social Media, I want to talk a little more about the important points that Duke’s Food Network audition efforts brought up: getting personal and brand identity. read more

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November 4, 2008

Exploring Social Media Series

One of the Anderson Historical Family Farms in Wisconsin - copyright Lorelle VanFossenHanging on the wall in a family friend’s home is a quilt bearing the name of our grandmothers. Surrounding their names are the names of men and women from their community. Funds were needed for a community project so a quilt raffle was developed. Each participant embroidered their names onto flour sacks in this once agricultural community now lost to the time and the metropolitan expansion of Marysville, Washington, USA. All the flour sack squares were sewn together to create a simple and colorful bed quilt, padded with a left over blanket and backed by a bed sheet.

The quilt was displayed in the community center of the now lost village while community members spent what little money they had on raffle tickets, knowing it was going for a worthy cause. Her grandmother won the raffle and the quilt comforted the beds and the spirits of their family’s sick and cold children for decades, finally finding its way to her wall in honor of the past and community spirit that once thrived in a place covered with housing subdivisions where no one knows their neighbors.

For the village of Sunnyside and others around the world, community quilts were their social media tools and resources. Neighbors would get together in between long days of planting, harvesting, and familial responsibilities to chat and share stories and news over pieces of fabric.

Local bars served the same purpose, along with food and drink, to create a family away from family where people could be “themselves” and share their thoughts with others, often encouraged by the spirits. read more

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October 26, 2008

Define Social Media

As I described in Learning Blogging and Social Media in Hawaii, I learned a lot about the future of the web at the Social Media Club Workshop in Honolulu this past week as part of Hawaii Geek Week.

One of the biggest problems facing those who consult and train others in social media, as well as business that need to know about social media, is defining social media. What is it?

Many simplify the concept and say that it is Twitter and blogs, especially blog conversations and comments. Others offer complicated answers that have to do with building your online identity and brand.

The last few workshops and conferences I’ve been to, including Podcamp and WordCamp Hawaii, battled with the definition of social media and the role it plays in today’s business and economy.

What does social media mean to you? How do you use it? What is it doing for you? How do you define social media?

Exploring Social Media Series

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