Social Media

When Horror Hits the Headlines: Tornadoes in Oklahoma

By Media

I grew up in the Midwest, land of Lincoln, corn, and tornadoes. We had tornado drills in school as often as we had fire drills, and I certainly experienced more tornadoes in my lifetime — and in fact, never a fire.

I’ve noticed, this week, as reports file in and are updated and revised on the death toll, the estimated damage, that no matter how I receive news, an event of this nature overwhelms and

Image from the Daily Beast

Image from the Daily Beast

overshadows all other content. It’s hard to even see or hear news beyond the tornadoes — even important news — when the consumers of news demand more pictures of devastation, stores of the survivors and the lost.

I can appreciate the focus on this and other tragedies, but I can’t help but wonder, at what price? When we narrow our vision to reflect on tragedies in our backyards and spend, perhaps, too much time looking at images or listening to interviews from the “ground zero” witnesses, what are we missing?

There are no artificial filters to help with this — it comes down to choices we make as consumers of news, but I think we should be cautious, and wary, that in the wake of tragedies such as this, our underbelly is exposed, and we need to still be vigilant in all other arenas, even while the first responders are still on site.

WTF? Friday: LinkedIn Bans Prostitutes, Allows Goofy Endorsements

By Social Media

It’s outrageous, right? That all this time, LinkedIn has had users whose professions include prostitution, and that endorsements like “rape,” “shoplifting,” and “manslaughter” have been WTF?allowed?

HOW DID WE NOT KNOW THIS? And really, who wants a prostitute with a well-developed professional net . . . oh, never mind.

LinkedIn is busy revising its user agreements while the rest of us grow weary of the request for endorsements. My friend, optometrist Mike Murphy, sent a message to his LinkedIn contacts this week:

I am sending a blanket email to all of my connections on Linked-In regarding endorsements.

Please be advised that I do not value empty endorsements. If you have never worked with me, been a patient of mine, or in some cases never MET me please do not endorse me.
Nor should you ask for or expect that I will endorse you for your skills if I have not experienced them first hand. I don’t want to seem ungrateful, but seriously if you do not know me how do you know that I even know which end of an ophthalmoscope to look through?

That said, I have received a few endorsements from people who I have a professional relationship with and those I welcome warmly and value highly.

Thank you for your consideration.

Mike Murphy

Endorsements have quickly lost their value. What still holds up, however, are the thoughtful recommendations that connections have written to formally recognize one another.

If you want to provide value to someone in your network, don’t endorse a skill, write them a recommendation.

WTF? Friday: Internet Privacy, Netflix Sharing and More!

By Communications, Media

On Charlottesville Right Now with Coy Barefoot, we talked about our changing relationship with privacy. A couple of recent developments inspired our discussion. One, the possible settlement agreement that Google may reach, in allegations that it,

gleaned “sensitive personal information,” including e-mail and text messages, passwords and Web-use history, from non-secured Wi-Fi networks,the Federal Communications Commission said last year.

We all love Street View, which the information was instrumental in building, but at what cost?

And this news from Netflix and Facebook: do you want your social network to know that your favorite movie is Hot Tub Time Machine? A new app allows users to share their movie viewing habits. Are you on board with that?

Listen to the podcast here.


Beware the Overshare this Holiday Season

By Social Media

From time to time, I join my friend Coy Barefoot in the studio at Newsradio WINA to discuss the social media/media news of the day. In our last broadcast together, we talked a little bit about the holidays; how they’re often difficult for people dealing with grief. In this era of frequent self-publishing and access to larger and larger audiences, there’s a growing tendency to overshare on social networks. We’ve all seen it, and many of us have done it — posting overly personal thoughts without regard to the audience and the impact our words may have on others.

Listen to the broadcast here. 

Just a note of caution and a reminder that it’s possible to create a list for yourself, or establish a group of trusted friends so if you absolutely MUST post on Facebook how terrible your Christmas/New Year’s/Hannukah is, that your closest friends, the ones who can be relied upon to respond and to reach out with a virtual pat on the back, will only see.

In case you need a little help with this task, I’ve prepared a visual:

Toodle on over to the left hand side of your Facebook account when you sign in and select Create a Group. Choose the privacy level appropriate, then spend the next several hours pondering your very best friends. Feel free to edit the group once in awhile. I have several groups to suit several needs — and I’m always conscious of what I’m sharing with whom.

Do I mess up? Sure I do — I’m only human. But managing our messages to others is something we can all try to do better.