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August 13, 2009

Sex Offenders To Be Banned from Twitter and Social Network Sites

Pat Quinn, Governor of the State of IllinoisPat Quin, Governour of the State of Illinois, has signed a bill in to law banning all registered sex offenders in the state of Illinois from using social networks. This becomes interesting when keeping in mind the broad spectrum covered by the definition of social networks: any site where someone has to sign up and can create a profile can be considered a social network.

“Social networking website” means an Internet website containing profile web pages of the members of the website that include the names or nicknames of such members, photographs placed on the profile web pages by such members, or any other personal or personally identifying information about such members and links to other profile web pages on social networking websites of friends or associates of such members that can be accessed by other members or visitors to the website. A social networking website provides members of or visitors to such website the ability to leave messages or comments on the profile web page that are visible to all or some visitors to the profile web page and may also include a form of electronic mail for members of the social networking website.

Maybe it would be easier to ban sex offenders from using the internet for a determined period. This period should be decided by a Judge and not by a politician.

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August 3, 2009

Movable Type Monday: 4.3 Release, Sharing Your Posts, and More New Features

Happy Monday, folks! Well, it’s here: Movable Type 4.3. Lots of new features and performance enhancements, so you’ll probably want to upgrade to this one. Here’s a summary of what’s new, taken from the official announcement:

  • Performance for all publishing is faster than ever.
  • Your readers can now find content by author or date range (something Google’s site search doesn’t do) with the powerful new search feature.
  • You can create a new site based on an existing one in just a few clicks with smarter blog cloning.
  • Page views can increase by more than 50% with the new flexible pagination for comments and entries (based on the testing of one of our clients.)
  • It’s faster to insert and re-use photos in your posts, and simple to create slide shows, with the most powerful asset manager ever.
  • Documentation is more comprehensive and easy to access than ever before.

Some impressive claims there. I hope after people have had time to kick the tires they’ll let us know how it really performs. read more

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March 24, 2009

Rocawear gets into social networking with Roc4Life.com

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roc4lifeStyle trendsetter Rocawear has launched Roc4Life.com, a social destination that offers exclusive lifestyle news, fashion, and cultural connections. The new social network is powered by Ning.com and has partnered with several digital websites including NecoleBitchie.com, AllThatsFabulous.com, FlyGuyChronicles.com, Blogxilla.com, Str8NYC.com, DefSounds.com, LolosCube.com, and FlyStyleLife.com.

“For the past ten years, the people at Rocawear have been tapping into a vibrant and thriving culture in the real world,” said Ning’s CEO and co-founder, Gina Bianchini. “Roc4Life.com gives them the opportunity to translate this conversation in their unique and authentic way online.”

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March 14, 2009

Could the MingleStick Change Blogger Conferences?

minglestick-by-mingle360I recently spoke with Bradley Blinn, Chief Officer of Sales and Marketing at Mingle360 (Twitter: @mingle360). Here’s what he had to say about the way his company’s MingleStick could change the way bloggers meet and mingle at blogging conferences and trade shows.

In what ways are blogging and the MingleStick similar?

It’s all about connection. A blog connects the author with its readers. The “connection device” is the article itself. In a similar way, our MingleStick product connects two people together. The MingleStick is a physical device that enables two people to connect with a simple press of a button. The MingleStick has proven itself to be great event technology within the convention and tradeshow industry. read more

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February 25, 2009

This Is Your Brain on Social Networks

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A British neuroscientist at Oxford University, Susan Greenfield, is warning that social networking sites such as Facebook, Bebo, MySpace and Twitter are damaging the brains of young people.

Among the damage being caused:

- Shortened attention spans
- A lack of empathy
- Need for validation from others

What does this all mean? In her expert opinion, the advancing popularity of social networking can impede the ability of younger generations to communicate effectively in person.

Talk about taking the social out of social networking!

In her words…

“I often wonder whether real conversation in real time may eventually give way to these sanitised and easier screen dialogues, in much the same way as killing, skinning and butchering an animal to eat has been replaced by the convenience of packages of meat on the supermarket shelf.”

Ms. Greenfield also warns of a link between the rise of Internet use and increasing levels of Autism and ADHD.

Does the growing popularity of social networking worry you? Are you concerned about the next generation and the way they will communicate?

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February 23, 2009

UK government plan to recruit director of digital engagement ridiculed by opposition

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The British government’s plan to appoint a director of digital engagement, with responsibility for overseeing a move to engage more with citizens through social media and other digital technology, has been ridiculed by the main opposition party.

The central government job has been created “in recognition of the huge increase in the use of the internet, digital communities and social media” and “will work across Government departments to encourage, support and challenge them in moving from communicating to citizens on the web to conversing and collaborating with them through digital technology.”

The circa £120,000 ($174,000) per year salary for this three-year contract is probably the most questionable aspect of the role, and warrants some accusation by the Tories of it being a “grotesque amount of public money”. However, to brand it a “pointless job” and to devalue it by suggesting it’s simply about “ministers… faffing around on Facebook and Twitter” misses the point. read more

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February 12, 2009

Understanding Digital Marketing: new jargon-free business book gets companies blogging

Filed as News with 11 comments

Understanding Digital Marketing is a new UK-friendly book aimed at explaining to companies how to harness the Internet to grow their business.

Written by technology journalist Calvin Jones and online expert Damian Ryan, it provides practical step-by-step guidance on the topics like selecting a domain name, search engine optimisation, affiliate marketing, online PR, social networking, email marketing and blogging. read more

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December 16, 2008

Six Apart Announces Motion: Roll Your Own Social Network with Movable Type

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Screenshot of a Motion social network

Screenshot of a Motion social network

A few hours ago, Six Apart announced a new social networking application: Motion. Built on top of Movable Type, Motion is billed as a DIY social network, as well as an aggregator for content from around the web. Motion allows you to create your own microblogging community with a simple posting interface for quickly blogging images, video, links, and more. It uses the Action Streams plugin to aggregate your users’ content from other social networks onto their profile page. And it supports Google Friend Connect, Facebook Connect and OpenID for signing in to comment.

I had an opportunity to try out a private beta of Motion. I have not installed the public beta that was released yesterday, so I can’t say what, if anything, has changed from what I tried. It was definitely a beta, so I wouldn’t advise putting it into production. I would suggest playing with it, though — this product has a lot of potential. read more

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December 1, 2008

Movable Type Monday: Archive Uploader, Action Streams, Disemvoweller, and More

Happy Monday, folks! Before I get into this week’s news, I wanted to mention a blog post written by Chris Alden, Chairman and CEO of Six Apart, a little over a week ago. In it, Chris discusses the effects a US recession will have on blogging. His theory is that a down economy will encourage people to “invest in themselves,” which will mean spending more time blogging.

Whether or not Chris is right remains to be seen, but if he is, it should affect more than just blogging. Most blog theme and plugin creators are independent developers. Investing in themselves means creating more designs and writing more code. If Chris’s theory holds we should see a lot of new blog tools in the coming months.

Speaking of which…

Plugins

Archive UploaderToI Planning released ArchiveUploader, which allows you to upload a zip, gzip, or tar archive of files to load into the Asset Manager. This is a great tool when you’ve got several pictures to upload to your blog. read more

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November 6, 2008

Will Obama Continue to Embrace Social Networking While In Office?

Filed as Guides with 2 comments

People are still debating why Barack Obama won the 2008 presidential election. It could be that he was the most qualified American citizen for the job. It could be that the country’s desperation for change outweighed everything else. It could be that he had a sick amount of cash at his disposal. Whatever the reason, one thing is crystal clear: Barack Obama and the Democrats leveraged technology like never before. They brilliantly tapped into text-messaging, e-mail, and social networking to build a base, raise money and spread ‘brand’ awareness.

In the midst of a tech revolution, it was only a matter of time for someone to take social networking beyond searching for EX-girlfriends.

Now that the election is over and the goal of an Obama White House has been met, what will happen to the president-elect’s online presence?

I’d like to hear your thoughts. Here are a few options to get you started. Do you think…

- Obama supporters will abandon their profile pages and unsubscribe from blogs.

- Obama supporters should expect their accounts to be blitzed with messages from future Dem candidates.

- Obama supporters will continue regular use of these sites. They will discuss meaningful issues, continue to donate money, and become the very agents of change they wished for.

Another thing to think about is how Obama will use technology when he is living on Pennsylvania Avenue. Will his State of the Union addresses break ratings records because supporters get a reminder on their iPhone app? Will the president’s administration use this same technology to continue two-way dialogue? We sure hope so. We now open the floor to you…

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