About the Author:

With a career that has spanned advertising, production, technical services, and project management, Michael is able to articulate the wide range skills and professions that make the Internet work. This eclectic understanding and his desire to shine the light on those hiding behind techno babble has brought success to a wide range of projects.

Twitter @bissell

Linked In

Past Postings:

Using Dissent To Enhance Your Social Influence Online

Industry Profile - Author

Industry Profiles Full Time Employees - Professional Writer

Some Thoughts On Freelancing

Building Your Online Brand

Marissa Mayer and the Change in Yahoo's Remote Workforce

LinkedIn for Professional Writers

Fake Republican Twitter Accounts

"Did you mean?" -- Google's chiding nanny of search results

Branded Technology

Sharingspree.com -- Stealing more than GroupOn's Idea

The Internet Isn't Entertaining Enough

It's not your bank... It's Apple's and Amazon's

Violated by Madison Avenue

Google+ Scares Me

"We need to..." Internet Marketing Myths

Facebook's deal with the Devil

My cool new phone is a little too cool.

You are never alone

Promotion vs. Distribution... You'd think they'd know that one...

Publishing Industry Watch

Content for Social Media

Social Media Slot Machine

Anonymous vs Me

News from the Twitter Follow Campaign Trail

The art of Indiscriminate Twitter Following

The Cloudy Meaning of The Cloud

The Demand For The Loss of Creativity

Alien Technology and Government Conspiracies

Time for a New Reality

The Death of Email

Protecting Free Speech... Anonymously (and geekily)

Amazon Shouldn't Have Shut Down WikiLeaks

The Superpowers of the Hive Mind

Time for New Ideas

Comcast, Netflix and the Mystery of the Modem

The Great Technical Disconnect

New for the Sake of New

A Retail Store Built Like the Web

Disposable Personas

When did Google Start Policing the Internet?

Getting back to HTML basics, thanks to Apple

Inspecting my Navel Base

A shoebox vs. an online backup

Is Your "Resume" Website Recruiter-friendly?

iBooks -- Creative Epicenter or Gatekeeper?

The Failure of Success

The Economy is Going to Get Worse, but that's okay

Time lost on Twitter

Client Vendor Relationships

Twitter's back alleys and dark places

Social Media is NOT Advertising

Microsoft Courier

Form (designers) versus Function (geeks)

PDXBOOM -- The power of social media and the portland pipe bomb

China and Apple -- Different organizations, same management

The volume of screens


Google Adds Biking Directions to Maps


That magical little tablet

How your website can be in two places at once

Masterpieces created by sheer volume

Suing over lack of originality

A Primer on Internet Fame -- dancing babies, hamsters, numa numa, and more...

Checking my messages

Rules are made to be broken -- in a reasoned, systematic way

So many accounts, so few passwords

Who really uses Twitter? 60% of Twitter's traffic isn't on Twitter

The Web is a Jerry Rigged Kludge

Twitter: Asleep at the Mouse Wheel

Where regulation is good: Google Voice and Vonage

How Facebook is (unintentionally) forcing programmers to piss off users

The Twit Cleaner

Perfect Secretary's pitch for @Adbroad (and the Youtube API)

The Emotions of Text

The Shorty Awards Scandal -- Manual Spam is still Spam

Google Analytics, the cloud and missing numbers #fail

Helen Klein Ross & Michael Bissell Interview at Adweek's Social Media Strategies Conference

The Internet is the New 60's

Cougars from New Zealand (and I don't mean big cats)

Adding facts together, or why you can't charge your cell phone from wifi

Social Media and the Destruction of the World

Rabid Fans vs Passive Viewers -- The Coco vs Leno saga

How to tell someone to retweet (without using up your 140 characters)

You can't buy social media

A book unopened is but a block of paper

Building the LOST: The Final Season Sweepstakes

Holiday SPAM (or the lack thereof)

Archiving Twitter

Too Many Toolbars

Random Censorship with Google Adwords

Accessibility and Shopping Online

Twisted path to customer service

Flash: Shiny objects blinding your audience

Twollow and other gold rush scripts

GPS in a Laptop computer

Thinking outside the box... There was a box?

Twitter was designed for Text Messaging

It's not the corporations, damnit

Entrepreneur or Dreamer?

Adweek Social Media Twitter for Brands Presentation

Socializing is more than Social Media

Generational Marketing is a Myth (or Who's your Daddy?)

Social Media is Just the Way We Use the Internet

Twitter Followers Don't Matter (ask the porn sites)

The Internet is Gooder than Books

Sometimes you don't want your campaign to go viral

Best Twitter Branding Campaign

Like flies to crap, Spammy Twitter Followers don't really go away

iPhone SMS Security Hole

How Flipmytweet works

Cell Phones as Microscopes

Digg is not the Hijacker -- You Are

Steve Ballmer -- the walking dead?

Twitter as an open mic poetry reading

Automatic Social [un]Awareness

New York, New York

First splash for United Against Malaria

New Media/Old Media and the CLIO Awards

Interview at SXSW: Mad Men Twitter And Tracking

We've got an App for that -- it's called the Web

Understanding Google To Get Your Resume Noticed

Made it to SXSW in Austin

The trouble with Wordpress and other templates

Wayward Words with Baggage

Speaking at SXSW March 17th

The fleeting Memory of the Internet

It's okay to say 'I don't know'

Good Morning America, now Go Fight Traffic

More surreality in Portland

Nike Takes Over Conquent

Facebook owns this title

Excuses, excuses

A little on Social Media

Feeding on Content

Attack of the Bots

Irish Music in Oregon City

Landing on an Aircraft Carrier

Got Curry? And some bizarre art?

Web 1.0

Random Music and Random Life in Portland

To the dump, to the dump, to the dump dump dump

Flight Simulator

Cold night, hot fire, happy cat

Net Neutrality

Walking to work in the snow

A window into Moreland of the Past

Getting clever with data feeds

Big and Little Beirut

The Other Credit Crisis

The Broadband Inauguration

T-Mobile owns Magenta and Other Patent Stories

The Risk-takers, Doers and Makers of Things

The noise of 20,000+ Twitter Followers

Reflections on my DC Trip

Born Again American

30,000 feet, 500 MPH Suburban Strip Mall

Cellphones, toilets and the Inauguration

The wall of pissing

National Treasure/National Archives

My trip to DC so far

Everyone is insane

Getting ready for DC

The End of Days (of song): Microsoft Songsmith Example

The Very Model of a Modern Major General

Browser Bigotry

The Death of your Soul: Microsoft Songsmith

Creative Development or Developing Creatively?

Race to Witch Mountain

The Myth of Wikipedia (or the Wiki-1400)

Online/Offline Sales -- is it really that bad?

Is PayPal Tacky?

Old School Web Design Still Works

Domain Squatting

Christmas Fire

Green Chri$tma$

QA 101

Portland Snow

Get some return on that web traffic

I think they have a backup...

I'd love to have that problem

The [un]importance of statistics

Don't be a tool of viral marketing

CAT Scan!

Follow up to the shoulder injury

Emails, discussions, blogs, wiki and web content

Ironic Injury

On the Santa Monica Pier

You Designed for Print First

You let someone else register your domain name

You figured .biz, .info, .us would work fine

What's after the Integrated Circuit?

Intelligent life is out there (but it's bugger all down here on earth)

Subject Matter Experts Talking Other Subject Matter

The Totalitarian Regime of Apple

Oversimplifying how people work


Creative Services for the New World

Reverse Anthropomorphism

The End of Time

Oil prices and birdsong

Watching Starship Troopers AGAIN!

Better Living Through Twitter

Lessons Learned From Apple

It's the Brand, Baby

Business Architecture vs. Web Construction

On Truth

You can't build life

Accidentally Drunk in Portland

Al Gore the Winner

Intelligent life is out there (but its bugger all down here on earth)

Aussie Rules Football

Trip to Nostalgia Land

I am such an idiot

Long day of travel

Miami -- as far from Portland as you can go in the US

Inverse Peter Principle

Random Knowledge

I'm fascinated with modern plumbing

Leaving Seattle (or why you should keep your ticket close)

On the Rails

The Hive

RSS for this blog

Seth shikora: Re: Oversimplifying how people work
2008-08-10 12:27:27

@bissell just read your blog post. I'm starting to agree. This should be forever known as Bissell's law of software development. :)

Andy Foote: Re: The Totalitarian Regime of Apple
2008-08-10 18:36:52

So they run a tight ship, whatever it takes to make the next disruptive, must-have product. They've repeatedly had success on a massive scale in the personal computing world. They've turned music sales strategy on its head. They've designed for individuals and the masses and provided so many 'wow' moments - power to 'em.

Steve Pruneau: Re: The Totalitarian Regime of Apple
2008-08-10 18:37:14

First, the very essence of Apple is creative, so like attracts like (creative types).

Second, as for the anti-establishment part of your question, Apple has always been "the enemy of my enemy", taking on IBM (early PC wars), then Microsoft and now freeing us from years of $18 CDs by creating iTunes.

Also, for decades, corporate IT departments attempted to exert just as much control over employees as Microsoft did over the market in general. Corporate IT departments consistently embraced IBM and Microsoft technology even when it was more difficult to use. So anti-establishment employees came to really resent corporate IT departments. Macs made it possible for users not to need corporate IT, because Macs really were easier to use. I think this was more true in the late '80s, all of the '90s and early 2000s than it is today.

J. David Knepper: Re: The Totalitarian Regime of Apple
2008-08-10 18:37:56

Why does creative and anti-establishment have to necessarily be joined by a comma?

The creative that requires Apple tools to be creative is probably less creative than he thinks he is. He's just been taught that he has to use Apple in order not to be one of the minions in the "1984" spot for Mac.

He should realize that that campaign probably originated on an IBM Selectric. By using Apple, he becomes a tool of the establishment!

Jeff Ello: Re: The Totalitarian Regime of Apple
2008-08-10 18:41:48

What makes you think that Mac users are creative and/or anti-establishment?

Part of it is the Mac was first to provide a platform for creative work. My early days were spent as a staunch Mac user/promoter for that reason. But just like Linux isn't your grandfather Unix, Microsoft isn't the Microsoft of long ago, and Apple certainly isn't the platform of choice for application developers - creative applications included.

That doesn't mean the users who were initially attracted to Macs instantly leave... there is a mix of legitimate concern, plus pride, misinformation, self-delusion, and a great bit of negative press involved. I left Macs behind in the mid 90's because Apple lost leadership on providing a platform for all the tools I want/need. Microsoft has that leadership now.

Having said that, OS X isn't a bad OS, and neither is Linux. IMHO, argument about adoption of one or the other is dictated by the software developers. The OS's nowadays are fundamentally indistinct.

Software developers determine which OS is king... the OS producers should make a note of that.

The "ideologically" Mac users I know are neither particularly creative nor anti-establishment. They are just harder to argue with.

I should mention that early in my career I did desktop publishing. Nowadays I do 3d animation, video editing, motion graphics, etc. What I do is highly dependent on having the right software. So even if I used a Mac for everything possible, I still couldn't do everything I do. Most of my most useful creative apps are Windows only (and sometimes Windows/Linux).

Pasted Conversation: Re: The Totalitarian Regime of Apple
2008-08-10 18:47:42

On 8/10/08 6:19 PM, Geoff Feldman wrote:
If your assumption was correct then the world would be a very stagnant place. Creative, anti-establishment thinkers choose the Mac because they like Macs. Creative anti-establishment thinkers (such as me) choose the PC because they like the PC.

Other than Apple Corp hype, why do you think that there are more per capita choosing Mac over PC? Why do you think that those who did choose Mac's for some tasks don't also choose PC's for others. REALLY creative people choose the tools that they need for the task at hand.

Mac's are limited in software and hardware choices, they still are. I find Mac's actually quite limiting even as I do find them simple to use and therefore not encumbering for appropriately limited tasks.

I reject your premise and find it ironically influenced by Apples rather self serving marketing hype.

On 8/10/08 6:32 PM, Michael Bissell wrote:
You're absolutely right -- most professionals choose the right tool for the job, regardless of brand and I've made all the arguments you've made, and still been shouted down by Mac users.

My question is why do these people continue to promote Mac as some idealistic utopian technology when the company's culture is pretty much diametrically opposed to the beliefs of the brand evangelists?

I feel if I can reconcile this schizophrenic belief system, I might learn a bit more about brand management.

On 8/10/08 6:46 PM Geoff Feldman wrote:
Much more interesting question! Now I get it.

I think the Mac's appeal is actually its simplicity. By limiting partners, hardware and software Apple limits the problems and complexity that the PC does have.

I think Steve Jobs and Bill Gates are actually working toward very different goals. Jobs is working to create an information appliance. He even talked about a science fiction device conceived by Vannevar Bush in the 1950's and called the "Memex". He is not ultimately making computers but "Memory extenders".

Bill Gates is committed to the notion that everyone is a computer programmer and can shape software to their unique needs. Gates is really making Lego blocks. The architecture promotion, market direction of the PC all go in this direction. Look at Excel. People are programming without even thinking they are.

I do believe peoples whose creativity is encumbered by the programming process do gravitate to the Mac provided it meets their needs. They don't need the choices of exotic hardware devices either. So, if the mac does it all and perhaps a bit more reliably then it is a better choice.

I also think that if one creates a matrix of typical office automation features and then the costs, the Mac is more expensive and provides little to show for the added cost other than better decor.

For those who do a lot of graphic production and are used to the Mac, the conversion to the PC can be expensive in terms of relearning common tasks. This is a valid point for these people.

If people want to participate in expensive decisions they should use objective metrics.

I also think the network technology is mature and it is possible to have a hybrid network with both devices. A little work needs to be done on sharing documents between the two machines but that is workable. A monoculture is not usually necessary.


Russell Wagner: Re: The Totalitarian Regime of Apple
2008-08-10 18:55:30

Because dope smoking, sandal wearing, smelly, STD carrying, brown rice eating hippie types are idiots -- for getting duped by corporations, that is.

I care about the PRODUCT, not the culture of the company that made it. As Werner von Braun once said, "I don't care which rich uncle pays for my rockets - Uncle Sam or Uncle Joe Stalin, as long as my rockets get built".

Personally, I am a platform atheist, so there...

Martin Killmann: Re: The Totalitarian Regime of Apple
2008-08-10 18:59:11

Well, at some time back in the 70ies Steve Jobs was a creative, anti-establishment thinker. Turns out the moment he runs a company he's a schoolbook authoritarian. So if you're the Steve Jobs generation and buy a Mac, it means you sold out but you still think you're a creative anti-establishment thinkers like you were back in the 70ies.

If you're my generation, born after John Lennon was shot, the term "anti-establishment" doesn't carry any meaning anyway. So I bought a Mac a few months ago. What does that say about me? Well, I spent some time comparing what was on the market and the Mac was a nice-looking, hassle-free machine for a price I could afford. So I bought it, and I still think it was a good choice. If they keep making good products my next laptop will be a Mac too.

People in my generation (at least the smarter ones) realized that buying a certain product does not save the world, and it does not say anything about you politically. You simply get something from a different factory in China. The best you can hope to do is avoid buying crap so companies that try to sell crap to you get washed off the market.

xolotl: Re: The Totalitarian Regime of Apple
2008-08-11 10:37:23

Following up on our twitter exchange...I find it surprising that you hold up Microsoft as the "open" alternative to Apple ;)

While it's true that Microsoft has generated a wider hardware ecosystem than Apple, the idea that Microsoft did this through "openness" misses the closely-held proprietary nature of all their work, as well as the monopolistic business tactics they use to control that ecosystem.

I think Apple generates a more-closely held hardware ecosystem primarily in order to ensure a better user-experience, not primarily for profit, or other nefarious motives.

Meanwhile, on the software side, the primary reason I use an Apple is exactly because it is more open than any Microsoft OS. Underneath the hood, Mac OS X is a Unix distribution (the ultimate lego kit), ready, willing and able to support the open source technology enviroment I need to do my (creative) work. I could use Linux or some other Unix distribution, but frankly, OS X leaves me more time to focus on my work and less time fussing with my computer. Apple and OS X are the best tools for my creative, open work. A lot of my highly-technical collaborators in the open source technology world seem to agree as now the majority of laptops visible at the conferences I attend are Macs.

And finally, since I like to consider my actions in as holistically as possible, I'd rather give my money to a company like Apple that comes closer to sharing my political views than one that completely mercenary in its political outlook (eg, every other major computer hardware manufacturer).

While I'm not in love with Apple's highly-controlled iTunes model for music or iPhone applications, I predict two things about it:

1) It will be an easier structure to compete with than Microsoft's OS monopoly.

2) Apple will be instrumental in defining a new digital rights management (DRM) structure that will be better than what we have now.

Your HR Person: Re: Emails, discussions, blogs, wiki and web content
2008-12-03 10:38:31

Discussion lists *haven't* disappeared; they've migrated. I moderate an international HR discussion forum and the sister job site, we have over 3700 people. I'm am a member of at least 20 others, mostly on Yahoogroups. I don't read them all every day, but I do contribute every now and then.

KMF @Employeeze: Re: You figured .biz, .info, .us would work fine
2008-12-03 12:12:57

There is merit to what you say, but there is also the fact that sometimes a "clever" spelling is going to be more descriptive. I spent many dollars and time with my own biz consultant on this one ;)

Tad Benson: Re: I think they have a backup...
2008-12-18 10:54:14

Might be a good way for web firms to market themselves....post a customer bill of rights which states they have access to any and all of their content, data, passwords, etc. even if the relationship goes sour. Or a good web business....the online web site escrow account. You, the third party, keeps all of the web site access info and does an auto-back-up of the site a few times a day.

: Re: Christmas Fire
2008-12-28 10:10:56

Good GOD. Are the kitties OK? Are *you* OK? How's the shoulder?

Desarae: Re: Domain Squatting
2008-12-29 09:04:05

Interesting post. So everyone will be getting their trademark names? I think it sucks people can domain squat anyway.


Albert Einstein: Re: QA 101
2008-12-29 12:35:12

"In theory, theory and practice are the same. In practice, they are not."

Julie Brosterman: Re: Domain Squatting
2008-12-29 13:26:24

There is someone intentionally squatting on my trademarked domain name and wants $250,000 for it.

Any suggestions on what I should do? She hasn't been active in anything remotely related to this name since 2006 and refused my recent offer of $1000 a month for 2 years.


Michael Bissell: Re: Domain Squatting
2008-12-29 19:07:08

Despite having dealt with domain names since 1995, I've never gotten into the real nitty gritty of disputing the ownership. From my research, the problem is that none of the registrars want to get involved without a court order -- it used to be a simple matter of faxing your trademark or articles of incorporation, but no longer.

This explains the average going rate of $10,000 to buy a domain name -- that's about what it would cost to sue someone even in a legitimate situation where you know you'll win.

Metroknow: Re: Old School still works
2008-12-30 13:34:58

Although I love the purist view of CSS for everything presentation-wise, I tend to agree on the use of tables for "quick and dirty" - and stable/predictable - for a site's visual framework...Your point on "it shouldn't do that" is spot on, sad to say.

What I don't get is by now you would think that Web devs would have a really strong library of elegant solutions for the variety of browsers/versions out there. Detect the js version used, and call a library function that applies to that version to adjust for the user's environment. Instead it seems like it becomes a polar discussion of pro- and anti-tablists. :)

I guess I just don't understand these kids ...ah dang it. Guilty. :)

Bram Pitoyo: Re: Old School Web Design Still Works
2008-12-30 16:15:52

You brought up a really good point: only use the appropriate technology when needed. This means that *not* everyone should overkill with the most cutting edge tools all the time. We see this today, where there is an assumption that for a web service to succeed, it has to somehow become 'social.'

But what *isn't* social?

Your get off my lawn sentiment seem to be appropriate. Just because something is possible, doesnt mean that it must be applied.

There are something to be said about people who dont keep up, and though it isnt right to leave them behind, I dont think running Internet Explorer 5.5 is good practice, either! :)

Paul Tutty: Re: Is PayPal Tacky?
2008-12-31 10:58:16

I was one of the people who answered you on LinkedIn and I really do strongly believe in offering as many options as possible for a checkout. It isn&'t tacky, it isn't "small business", it is good business.

Think of it from your own point of view. Starting from the very first time you did an e-commerce transaction, did you really not worry what was happening with your CC details?

I know I did and still do with certain websites that don't seem to be well developed, but do have a certain item I can't find elsewhere.

Now I'm not saying the website in question is ill-developed, but personal taste is personal taste and I'm certain someone, somewhere, will not enjoy the experience. That's just a fact of life. And they will leave without purchasing, as I have done and you probably have done.

But, because humans are brand-oriented, whether they believe it or not, that fact can be used in your favor. Adding a well-known brand to a website, like the visa or mastercard logo, adds credibility. But so does adding PayPal and google checkout. Google and PayPal are near household names in households with internet access, ie. your target market.

So by adding credibility to the site, you infer trust to buy.

The second reason and one which I would prefer to be the main reason people would use them more, is because I strongly believe in having one account that can be re-used on a lot of websites. Like OpenID, google checkout and PayPal allow people to just "sign in and go" with minimal fuss and with minimal time spent filling boring forms.

Darren Azzopardi: Re: Is PayPal Tacky?
2008-12-31 14:24:05

I myself have never made the assumption that paypal equals, "small business" but then again, I can easily see why this opinion has formed.

It's cheaper to setup and when companies on a timescale...it makes sense.

Seeing a Paypal logo for me personally means when it comes to the processing my order, all that is required is my email and possible password for security.

So instantly I feel relaxed. I don't have to go downstairs, look through my jacket, pluck out my card, type out my numbers, hope I haven't entered a wrong digit by mistake or I'll be forced to repeat the process.

Now I'm sure you can see the positives of that.

It will only be ignorance letting you choose not to have it.

I don't know the stats on how many e-commerce sites use Paypal. For the sake of the discussion lets say 35% of all e-commerce sites use this.

Now if you where to give a presentation to your client and in it you advised them not to you use paypal as it cheapens their site.

Your basicly cutting off revenue, and where business is business. If someone said to me I'm not getting my possible share 35% of income because you think its tacky. Then I'll call my PA to book you a taxi home.

Its similar to me saying to a future client I will not build you an IE6 proof site because its CSS rendering is so poor and its just too much effort. IE6 still exists because people do not know better, they stick to what they know.

They're not like you or I, using the web everyday for reading, contacting clients, etc, etc. For them its familiarity, they see something they know...BAMN! They're on it...its plain sailing from then on.

Now why would you take that away from them because you don't like it.....you big meany!

Once could say its up to use to educate the users out there to whats best, making them avoid the bad...to gentley push them in the right direction.

We are not dictators just designers...designing areas where users feel comfortable.

Darren Azzopardi

Michael Bissell: Re: Is PayPal Tacky?
2008-12-31 15:30:52

I have to admit, I didn't expect to change my opinion by asking this question, but, heck, these things happen. We'll keep a hard press on him to keep the existing card processing and when we add PayPal, we'll probably add Google Checkout as well -- no impediments to getting the money from the customer to our client.

James: Re: Online/Offline Sales -- is it really that bad?
2009-01-02 15:50:43

And you could argue that healthy profits with flat or even declining sales might be due to increased technical productivity reducing labor and other expenses.

That's where you come in ;)

Pete Forsyth: Re: The Myth of Wikipedia (or the Wiki-1400)
2009-01-04 01:11:52

I'm one of the 1400, and I don't get it. I'v heard others make points similar to this, but something fails to click for me.

Exactly who is it who has advanced -- or believes -- the myth you posit?

Of course, in the early days of a new project, there is a small number of people making most of the contributions. I'm not sure why that would be surprising, or cause concern.

I don't think there's a single regular contributor who would recommend to anyone that they use Wikipedia as a reliable source or accurate overview for any serious purpose.

There is, of course, an ideal to which many of us aspire -- and one that people like Jimmy Wales have discussed at length.

Usually prefaced with the word "imagine."

If we get there at all, it might take years or decades.

But that doesn't mean there isn't incredibly cool stuff happening on Wikipedia all the time, or that it isn't very useful (alongside other sources) in certain areas.

Plus, I think the trend is in the right direction.

Michael Bissell (in response to Pete Forsyth): Re: The Myth of Wikipedia (or the Wiki-1400)
2009-01-04 10:33:44

Before writing this post, I dug through some of the source material for the basis of the Wiki-1400, and I admit, it's one of those statistical games that can be played different ways -- the comments were originally made early on, but they've been repeated, there's the issue of rollbacks and anti-vandalism contributing to those numbers, but overall, I think it makes sense that there's a hardcore center making the bulk of the changes.

I think it's interesting that Pete says he doesn't "... think there's a single regular contributor who would recommend to anyone that they use Wikipedia as a reliable source or accurate overview for any serious purpose." The problem is that non-contributors DO use it as the Holy Grail of information. The general impression is that the Wiki is as accurate as anything else you'll find out there.

And I'm not saying it's not. Ultimately the problem rests in using any single source as your end-all source. That's why using the Bible to prove the existence of God to non-believers doesn't work -- you start to lose the science and enter faith when you accept only one source.

But, I have to agree with Pete that the Wiki is on the right track. Heck, the very fact that I can post a blog like this, get feedback, and clarify, all over the course of a lazy weekend, shows the power of the Internet for collaboration and the exchange of ideas.

Edward Hart: Re: The Death of your Soul: Microsoft Songsmith
2009-01-08 15:25:06

There isn't any substitute for real chords played by real musicians on real musical instruments simply because no two performances will be the same. Listen to Django Reinhardt playing jazz guitar or Art Tatum on piano and you'll see what I mean. There on another planet. If you listen to Teddy Wilson on piano, you're on another planet still.

However, to pretend you can't create things using short-cuts of one kind or another such as amplifiers, chord generators, drum machines or Dreamweaver, isn't true.

Real music and Songsmith both allow scope for improvisation and nuance. It depends who is doing it. I know which I prefer but I wouldn't say, ispo facto, that the other method has no value. I can't, it depends what you do with it.

Two people with a paintbrush will produce two very different paintings, whether they have merit or not doesn't come down to the brush they use. The rssult isn't just a question of technique either, real art is novel - in the true sense of the word - a different way of seeing.

The same applies to Dreamweaver. You can be a largely talentless user or someone who'll explore every avenue that the product allows. To say that an idea - and by extension a design -doesn't have any merit because of the software used - is nonsense. It is the user that is important because without the user nothing happens anyway.

However, using software imposes limitations from the outset but a talented user of Songsmith won't just see the cords he or she will hear them. The same applies to any instrument, practical or otherwise. In the end it comes down how well the performer or operator can use it.

The people who use Songsmith are unlikely to come up with anything new not because it's Songsmith but because they want to take a shortcut on a road that must inevitably be long. Long, unless your Mozart or Bach... In which case you can see what you want to do in your mind's eye and just get on with it. There are plenty of people out there who enjoy making music without recourse to gadgets. Unfortunately, many people haven't the time, talent or inclination to do this - that's why they take shortcuts.

There will always be people who will eschew these things and go it alone. Why? Because they can. They don't need them. In this instancce, beauty is in the user.

Michael Bissell: Re: The Death of your Soul: Microsoft Songsmith
2009-01-08 17:46:04

Don't get me wrong: tools are great. But a tool that limits you, like Songsmith (or Dreamweaver), limits more than the creative product, it limits your growth.

Guitar Hero doesn't teach you to play guitar, but at least it doesn't pretend to teach. Tools that pretend to be more than the are... that's the crux of the problem.

aviel: Re: Browser Bigotry
2009-01-09 10:18:34

So I built tweetweather, and believe it or not, I'm a .NET developer.

The fact is, I write code all day that is used by 90% ie6, but when I come home (to my mac) I don't want to boot into windows much less spend hours of my free time testing for ie6 rather than adding more features.

You'll notice that ie7 is support, and you know what, I bet ie6 renders just fine, but I refuse to even spend the time testing it.

Honestly, things like TweetWeather (fun side projects) are often done as acts of love by the developer, there is absolutely no contract with the end-user to support their outrageously inferior browser.

Granted, if TweetWeather was anything but a fun sideproject, I would agree with you 100%.

crunchysue: Re: Browser Bigotry
2009-01-09 10:48:17

Where do you, personally, draw the line for user exclusion? Somewhere between 10% and 20%, I guess, since for you it's OK to exclude the 10% who don't have Flash, but not OK to exclude the 20% who don't have a browser newer than IE6. Lots of people (especially at work) don't have admin rights to their machines, and so can't install/upgrade their browser or Flash.

So I'm wondering what the usage stats will have to be before you reckon it's OK to exclude the IE6 users.

Michael Bissell: Re: Browser Bigotry
2009-01-09 10:51:40

Thanks for the response -- I think the main problem with the instant redirect is the moment of "What the hell just happened?" A simple javascript alert like "This site doesn't support IE6, prepare to be redirected to Firefox..." would help a lot.

Teagan Drumheller: Re: Browser Bigotry
2009-01-09 10:53:34

aviel: Very neat application, I had some fun looking around at the weather in various places. I like the idea.

I just tested the site in IE6 right now, actually, by specifically disabling your IE browser version check in the tweetWeather.js.

As far as I can tell, there are no problems running the site in IE6, or, if there were any, I certainly couldn't notice them. Everything seemed to function right.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not advocating the use of IE6- that antiquated hunk of software should be long dead by now, at LEAST replaced by later versions of IE, and reasonably, replaced by Firefox or Chrome.

But, it is up to the user, after all. Ever see those little labels on the back of electronics that say "This device must accept any interference recieved"? I'd say the same should be true for webpages. If someone decides to use IE6, and it mixes things up a bit... the site may not work, but it should at least be displayed. It's the user's responsibility to get a right web 'viewer'. What if they were using something like Netscape or Konquerer/KMeleon or other such strange browsers? I'd expect IE6 would be more supported than some of those weirder ones, even.

aviel: Re: Browser Bigotry
2009-01-09 11:19:43

Michael @Teagan thanks to both of you. I went ahead and pulled the ie6 redirect code.


Michael Bissell (in reply to crunchysue): Re: Browser Bigotry
2009-01-09 12:34:28

Although I mentioned Flash being okay, I would never recommend doing an entire site in Flash, nor the navigation, nor anything critical to the site. I admit, we have used Flash for graphs at times, but even there I'd rather use some sort of server side image generator than force someone to install Flash.

The goal is to get things to work in as wide a range of browsers as you can. If the site is readable in a text-only browser (like Lynx), then you're golden. Balancing the look and feel with project requirements is tricky at best, and we all have to compromise on standards in the world of commercial development, but the best case is never to leave any browser behind.

landinn: Re: Browser Bigotry
2009-01-09 14:34:52

Interesting thread; I was just following another elsewhere on Flash vs. Silverlight.

@mizd: Re: The End of Days (of song): Microsoft Songsmith Example
2009-01-10 11:12:20

@bissell Nooooo! What have they done to Diamond Dave? Gawd that was horrible. Songsmith is just.... I have no words. ::shudder:

Arbitar: Re: Getting ready for DC
2009-01-11 02:09:43

Few tips you likely already know all about, but if you don't, they can help out:

* When you get to the gate, talk to the attendant behind the desk about switching to exit-row seats. Maintaining eye contact with the lady while saying you're ready to help in an emergency can give you a lot more legroom, and people can't recline in front of you most of the time. Makes a long flight just that much more comfy. Furthermore, window seats in exit rows on some planes can sometimes have no seat at all in front of them, which is nice. (generally applies to the planes with two exit rows per exit)

* At PDX, as you know, there are two wings, or sides, to the airport, each with a seperate security setup. What a lot of people overlook is that there's a terminal connector right after security, headed away from the front of the airport. You can pick the side of the airport with less security traffic, then walk across the relatively short connector to get to the side with your flight.

* Nowadays, they're allowing you to take coffee and other such food and drinks obtained from past security onto the plane. There was a period in time where I'd always waste my coffee because I'd forget. :( But no more, it would seem. They always never seem to bat an eye at food, chips, or sandwiches coming in from outside security though.

* When it comes time to get a drink, you can generally order a bottle or a can of what you wish (ie, 'can of sprite') without them giving you any problem about it. You get five times the drink and a lot less hassle in general.

Anyway, you likely already know all this stuff or it was just common sense, but, I like to be helpful.
Have a good flight & trip, eh!

marissa: Re: Everyone is insane
2009-01-12 10:14:31

well, i'm glad i'm not the only crazy person. ;)

landinn: Re: Everyone is insane
2009-01-12 16:17:33

You're *just* figuring this out? It was your special brand of NW insanity that saved me from the midwest, thankyouverymuch!

DavidN: Re: The Death of your Soul: Microsoft Songsmith
2009-01-13 12:25:26

What an excellent description of it at the end - I just found out about this, er, music software through being linked to the unintentionally hilarious advert video for it, and after being slightly infuriated at the whole idea for a while, just began to find it more and more comical.

It's never going to instantly churn out things that anyone thinks are hits, but it's inevitably going to perform the near-miraculous feat of making Youtube a bit more annoying.

Jane: Re: National Treasure/National Archives
2009-01-15 09:08:10

I don't know that Roosevelt had that high a voice. That's just how recordings sounded in those days.

kyra: Re: Cellphones, toilets and the Inauguration
2009-01-17 07:45:46

I wonder how they figure out what the ideal ratio of people to toilets would be. 5 million people, even if at a 100/1 ratio, would call for 50,000 porto-potties! yikes!

Landinn: Re: Born Again American
2009-01-17 16:48:36

OK sounds like a lot of worried republicans. "My bible and my bill of rights", "my creed's equality"? How often are the bible thumpers completely *exclusive*; if you don't follow their beliefs you go to hell, do not pass Go?

If they had left out the religion it might be a good message and video.

Eric Weaver: Re: Reflections on my DC Trip
2009-01-19 21:52:14

...spend 5 days in Mazatlan AND rent out your place for $10K to a looky-loo...

Kirk: Re: The wall of pissing
2009-01-20 10:10:21

Sounds like you have a new calling...

ericgerhardt: Re: T-Mobile owns Magenta and Other Patent Stories
2009-01-21 21:13:44

Why not patent yourself? Anything the docs create from samplling you would be derivative works, right?

Debs: Re: Walking to work in the snow
2009-01-27 10:49:40

Love the photos! Sounds like a lovely way to start the day!

Landinn: Re: Walking to work in the snow
2009-01-27 14:13:05

Here in Seattle what really gets me are the *idiots* that abandon their cars at the side of the road when it snows. It's ridiculous.

Glad you had a nice hike. :)

marissa: Re: Cold night, hot fire, happy cat
2009-01-29 22:24:21


Landinn: Re: Cold night, hot fire, happy cat
2009-01-30 08:11:04

LOL. Hannah does this every time I go in the bathroom at my feet (whilst upon the throne.) That durn cat purrs all the time. Even her snore sounds suspiciously like a purr!

Happy Kitties make life good.

John Bissell: Re: The Other Credit Crisis
2009-02-01 08:00:12

The line can also be broken when an undercapitalized bank decides to call in a line of credit covering the payroll. Thus the service provider or vender is bought down not by their poor management, but by doing business with a client who could not pay, and a bank who could not lend.

I know of one case where the client could not pay because the bank pulled a load it had already guaranteed to the client, then the company (vendor) used a line of credit from a different bank to cover the payroll that was short due tot he client's inability to pay. The line of credit to the vendor was then called. The client and the consultant did things right. Two banks pulled funds without cause, bringing both companies down.

brock: Re: Web 1.0
2009-02-06 16:50:13

A SQL query walks into a bar and sees two tables. He walks up to them and says 'Can I join you?'

John Bissell: Re: - To the dump, to the dump, to the dump dump dump
2009-02-17 07:37:19

Read Quicksilver by Neal Stephenson. In the late 1600s our hero Jack Shaftoe is traveling from Amsterdam to Paris. He can tell when he is within a couple of days of Paris by the stench of sewage and garbage emanating form the city. Weve come a long way.

Juan: Re: Nike Takes Over Conquent
2009-02-20 16:11:23

Would have been more interesting if you had a photo of the office.


Jeri: Re: It's okay to say "I don't know"
2009-02-27 17:54:05

"If you tell the truth you don't have to remember anything." Mark Twain

P: Re: - Good Morning America, now Go Fight Traffic
2009-03-02 12:17:08

Welcome to my world.

David Burn: Re: Made it to SXSW in Austin
2009-03-16 06:16:27


Go to Guero's on South Congress for some tacos. Then, you'll see Austin.

And what up this Wired interview?

Kristen: Re: Made it to SXSW in Austin
2009-03-16 06:54:14

Sorry you aren't feeling well. Maybe try some Afrin for the next leg of the journey? Post some pics; I've been to Dallas and Houston but everyone tells me Austin is the most PNW-like city in Texas.
There's a cool fountain in town with running horses.

Eric Weaver: Re: Steve Ballmer -- the walking dead?
2009-07-15 15:18:50

The metaphor is not entirely in-apt. Ballmer is a sell-what-you-have guy. Gates at least had a somewhat decent nose for the next thing, even when it was a bit late.

And Google was wise to wait on announcing their OS until they were already too big for Crime-o-soft to "cut off their air."

They are a company whose time has come and gone. More and more (and larger and larger) computer users are finding that instead of paying massive poundage for mediocre software, that they can get somewhat different mediocre software for approximately free.

Now the monster must go screaming out into the night...

("Wait! I was gonna make espresso...")

: Re: Steve Ballmer -- the walking dead?
2009-07-15 20:39:25

Oh hillarious, they look exactly alike!!

Viorel: Re: How Flipmytweet works
2009-08-02 01:45:00

I confirm, that's the approach we've used for flipmytweet ! :)

Teagan Drumheller: Re: iPhone SMS Security Hole
2009-08-03 21:57:49

<A href=http://news.zdnet.com/2100-9595_22-326501.html> http://news.zdnet.com/2100-9595_22-326501.html</A>

Check this out- it may be a problem on more phones than you might think.
This article states that Windows Mobile and Android phones are vulnerable to something rather similar to what you're describing- different effects on the various phones though. Windows Mobile phones can be effectively disabled whereas Android phones may be able to be disconnected from the network temporarily.
Glad I'm running the latest firmware on my G1 though- doesn't sound fun, heh.

Michael Bissell: Re: iPhone SMS Security Hole (In response to Teagan)
2009-08-03 22:47:26

I think one thing that makes this different is that iPhone users are, by and large, pretty unsophisticated technology consumers.

This is their first smartphone, and a lot of them never synchronize them, never update patches, and don't even realize that they might be at risk. At least no one seems to have actually orchestrated an attack with this exploit, but if someone does, my guess is that the iPhone market will remain much more vulnerable than the geekier Android market.

Lelonopo: Re: Like flies to crap, Spammy Twitter Followers don't really go away
2009-08-11 19:03:17

@bissell Spam twits are like the guy who gave me his business card, while sitting next to me at a funeral.

Don Park: Re: Emails, discussions, blogs, wiki and web content
2009-09-15 17:23:11

google is looking at the different forms of communication as well. google wave is a 'singularity' of online communication.

Cory Huff: Re: Emails, discussions, blogs, wiki and web content
2009-09-15 18:55:42

Discussion forums are definitely not gone. They're just not hip anymore. They've gone niche too - I participate in some forums that are so specific it makes me laugh that there are so many people interested in those topics.

Ellen Mahoney: Re: Best Twitter Branding Campaign
2009-09-18 22:10:50

I post for @EdieAdams and was at the "It's a Mad_World" event at Radio City.

Your take on this is excellent -- fans getting an award for a brand fiction campaign that's not a traditional campaign. Breaking rules.

Congrats to all, especially the Mad Men gang.

Jane Blue: Re: The Internet is Gooder than Books
2009-09-27 22:44:22

Wow! Books and Macs are anathema to you. I think we have completely different brains.

Michael Bissell: Re: The Internet is Gooder than Books
2009-09-28 20:08:07

I just think that most arguments I hear saying that one thing is better than another are often based in convention, not in reality -- and I think that the arguments I hear about books and macs are both snobbish and uninformed.

I like a good argument, I just hate a cut-rate one (to paraphrase Casablanca).

Oh, and I wouldn't call books or macs evil, just the blind faith in them, so yeah, anathema is probably the right word... It's the curse of blind faith that gets me riled up not the tools of the faith.

SlideShare_dan: Re: Social Media is Just the Way We Use the Internet
2009-09-30 22:06:51

I agree. Plus some of the numbers are misleading to compare. Facebook added 100 mil. users in 9 months, but that's not how long it took to get its first 100 mil users.

I think social media is amazing and is here to stay, but we're hardly going to recognize it in a few years.

Michael Bissell: Re: Social Media is Just the Way We Use the Internet
2009-09-30 22:16:43

I also question whether social media has overtaken porn as the #1 activity on the web. A lot of social media IS porn, or just outright prostitution.

Kristen: Re: Generational Marketing is a Myth (or Who's your Daddy?)
2009-10-01 19:58:19

Totally right. There are also other factors beyond age such as marital/parental status, your income, industry, etc.

I have more in common with my 26 year old sister than my 42 year old brother (who is a year younger than me) based on the fact that 1) he's got marriages behind him, I'm still single 2) I have worked most of my career in the tech industry, which is by its nature a "youthful" industry due to the changes 3) I'm female, she's female, he's obviously *not*.

It has nothing to do with our parents and everything to do with our experiences and where we are in life and how we got there.

Tad Benson: Re: Socializing is more than Social Media
2009-10-02 17:54:06

Good post. I like it and agree. Have a great weekend.

Jane Blue: Re: Socializing is more than Social Media
2009-10-02 17:55:12

I find I want to go out more to see my Facebook friends in person at events they are hosting.

Lynn Soland: Re: Socializing is more than Social Media
2009-10-02 21:21:20

Well Said Michael!

I plan on pointing several friends who aren't drinking the social media Kool-Aid, straight to your blog.

Didn't I hear you might pull a conference together? Something about meeting the person hidden inside the ethernet? :-) Hope you do!

Kyra Weaver: Re: Entrepreneur or Dreamer?
2009-10-05 16:10:43

nice food for thought! I admit I too have the 'going it alone' dream... guess I should try to network first.

Gregg Abbott: Re: Socializing is more than Social Media
2009-10-06 05:21:13

It's really been the most rewarding part of my job is watching as Whiffie's has be come like a real life chat room.

Steve Frame: Re: There was a box?
2009-10-09 19:05:54

Let's have some new cliches. --Samuel Goldwyn

Mike D.: Re: Twollow and other gold rush scripts
2009-10-14 15:27:47

Where would capitalism be if everyone just rolled their own?

Sure, building any business on the back of someone else's is dangerous. But, in the land-of-the-quick-buck, well, I suspect Twollow and similar are just hoping to make some money this year but aren't introducing 401K plans or buying 2nd homes at the beach.

Short sighted business models are the "new success" model for the current generation entering business. "Youtube," never had a business model other than "get acquired."

Your opinion is probably right and very sound. But, it's no longer the world around us.

Russ: Re: Twollow and other gold rush scripts
2009-10-14 16:33:36

Yeah we're working on a twitter thingie for one of our clients too. I think facebook is more of a gold rush, but seriously? 15 bucks a month for an hour's worth of work? Sign me up!

: Re: We've got an App for that -- it's called the Web
2009-11-07 00:19:39

It's about time APPLE gets taken down a few notches, along with their fanboys and fangirls.

These also apply:



While we all know that Microsoft is far from perfect, many Microsoft dollars, via Bill Gates, flow out to make huge improvements around the globe. Apple has massive cash reserves. So, who's really cooler? Those hording cash or those using it to make the world slightly less sad?

iPhone? It's a mobile phone, big deal. A mobile App is a web site you pay for. How cool is that?

John Bissell: Re: Twisted path to customer service
2009-11-10 15:06:37

This is wild. And it seems so removed from anything I do, yet it is clear to me that the world is migrating toward these communication styles. It is almost like having to learn a new language without moving to a new country.

Kid2Nite: Re: Born Again American
2009-12-02 06:06:03

OH NOoooooooo!!!
Christianity....run for the hills...run for the hills!

You have a sad little life

Michael Bissell: Re: Born Again American
2009-12-02 09:17:27

Kid2Nite: Are you trying to make my point? Or did you miss entirely that I feel that there's this exclusionary attitude with a lot of Christians?

Your comment sums it up nicely -- a quick slice of sarcasm, and then a jab about my "sad little life." I don't know what you base that comment on, but it certainly isn't constructive argument. Hell, it's not even argument, it's just a flip insult supposedly in defense of the man who said "love thy neighbor" and "judge not the sinner."

I just want my America back. You know, the one that was founded by free thinking, enlightened people who based argument in logic and reason, and not knee jerk insults and dogma.

Jane Blue: Re: Archiving Twitter
2009-12-22 20:21:22

"Stream of consciousness that is the Internet" is a good way to describe it.

Eric Weaver: Re: Building the LOST: The Final Season Sweepstakes
2009-12-30 00:55:10

An amusing challenge was that they wanted to give people a right/wrong indication on each question. How to do that without just letting them view source and read the correct answers?

Wound up doing a bunch of nasty number hacking in Javascript. Lots of multiplying and dividing-and-taking-the-remainder. The correct answer will be divisible by a certain number that's not obvious at first. I figured anybody hackerly to figure it out will have wasted enough time they might as well have submitted the form 25 times.

Taylor Singletary: Re: Building the LOST: The Final Season Sweepstakes
2009-12-30 18:07:26

Great project. I also recommend Joyent's cloud solutions pretty highly. AppEngine has legs but requires very specific implementation choices

Michael Bissell: Re: Building the LOST: The Final Season Sweepstakes
2009-12-30 18:07:50

I like the way Rackspace Cloud Sites (as opposed to Cloud Servers) scales automatically leaving fewer of those implementation choices

Jane Blue: Re: A book unopened is but a block of paper
2009-12-31 11:17:00

Very interesting. I agree with you about overly restrictive copyright laws.

Michael Bissell: Re: A book unopened is but a block of paper
2009-12-31 12:34:00

We have a simultaneous growth of corporate rights and intellectual property laws. It's gone far beyond the idea of protecting the rights of the artist or creator, especially when you consider how rarely the artist or creator owns their own work.

Even as someone who works with and protects ideas all day, I hate the phrase "intellectual property" -- it sounds like the enslaving of free thought, and in a lot of ways it is.

Jane Blue: Re: A book unopened is but a block of paper
2009-12-31 12:50:00

Emily Dickinson, who never published or made money when she was alive, is owned by Harvard Libra

Michael Bissell: Re: A book unopened is but a block of paper
2009-12-31 13:06:23

According to http://www.emilydickinsonmuseum.org/resources_bibliography#copyright only the most recent editions of her works are under copyright -- does this mean they discovered new works in the 50s and copyrighted them then?

Pfah... It's like a zombie army of thinkers, she's owned after death... I wonder if you can write into your will that any unpublished works found and later published are automatically public domain... That and your genetic material...

SlideShare_Dan: Re: How to tell someone to retweet (without using up your 140 characters)
2010-01-09 00:18:14

We do that on our "Tweet This" link on SlideShare. We implemented this almost a while ago, so let us know if you get a gold star. We want one too!

Michael Bissell: Re: How to tell someone to retweet (without using up your 140 characters)
2010-01-10 18:03:22

You definitely get a gold star for including the twitter status update on slide share (we added this to Jokeindex.com a while ago and found a definite traffic increase). That and having your own url shortener is really good -- I'm still amazed how many companies don't have their own.

But I think you miss the point (or I miss yours). What we did here isn't just using the Twitter Status URL, it's the fact we're putting the status into a tweet that seems different to me. A tweet inside a tweet -- sort of "tweet compression" or "tweet attachment" in the otherwise too limited constraints of 140 characters to let you ask for a Retweet AND have the tweet fit in the box...

Adbroad has been using this to moderate success, and I think the idea might still be a little abstract to get people to really use it, but as with any of this social media stuff, we'll just have to see if others pick up on the idea.

SlideShare_Dan: Re: How to tell someone to retweet (without using up your 140 characters)
2010-01-11 18:38:24

Ahh, I get it now. It's basically a more refined usage of the Twitter status update. You click click the link and your tweet nominates AdBroad

masurix: Re: Rabid Fans vs Passive Viewers -- The Coco vs Leno saga
2010-01-14 00:33:56

This very issue came up on io9.com the other day when we were discussing NBC changing 'Day One' from a series to a miniseries to a TV movie. Someone was complaining that they wouldn't go back to broadcast TV until there was fresh talent, good writing, and compelling shows. The problem is, those of us who have moved on from being glued to the TV will never go back to that. We DVR, we torrent, we download from iTunes, we play games, read books, etc. The kind of person who wants a good show they can love isn't the kind of person that makes the network money in this business model, as JP pointed out.

So, I don't anticipate broadcast TV having anything I'd consider 'good' ever again, really. Or if they do come out with something compelling, it'll be canceled as too expensive, low-rated, and not as cost-effective as a reality show, so why get attached?

nwlynch: Re: Rabid Fans vs Passive Viewers -- The Coco vs Leno saga
2010-01-14 16:44:00

@bissell I read the post... do you think TV will really ever become obsolete or just specialize like radio has?

Michael Bissell: Re: Rabid Fans vs Passive Viewers -- The Coco vs Leno saga
2010-01-15 16:46:28

@nwlynch I think broadcast TV will become more like cable, which is to say, yes, I think it will specialize like radio has done.

Jane Blue: Re: Social Media and the Destruction of the World
2010-01-15 19:17:56

And maybe the poets, the "intuitionists" will take over the world. Interesting.

Kristen: Re: Social Media and the Destruction of the World
2010-01-17 17:04:09

PLEASE let it be the politicians! :)
Seriously, I know exactly what you mean about being a generalist and being able to just follow patterns, random or not. Should be an interesting decade.

john bissell: Re: Social Media and the Destruction of the World
2010-01-19 22:04:38

This is disturbing. I believe a PhD disertation in sociology could be written on this issue. One change we see is fear, leading people away from rational thought as the seemingly randomness of information overwhelms their personal filters. The easy solutions found in fundamentalist religion or new cults is appealing. Knowledge is then labeled as dangerous.

Mark: Re: The Internet is the New 60's
2010-01-25 04:50:36

I'm glad I followed the link from your tweet. I've been feeling the same way for a long time, a sense of wonder mixed with dread, but wasn't able to put a label so succinct as 'the new 60's' on it. No wonder we have so many old fools like John Hagee up in arms - it's the next wave in cultural evolution! Of course, the real question is, can we harness this new power and use it for good, or will we fall into the same patterns of abuse as our forebears?

Michael Bissell: Re: The Internet is the New 60's
2010-01-25 05:30:25

Mark: What I think is interesting with the the radical voices like John Hagee or Glenn Beck is that they are just part of the noise -- it's the fact we get to hear all the noise now that makes things different.

I'm optimistic in the long run although very cynical in the short term. Each of these revolutions I mentioned has left the world a little more mature, a little more aware of a bigger picture, and a little freer of the darkness and oppression that happens when people are clueless.

That short term though... yeah, there are a lot of beheadings, shootings and imprisonments on the way to universal enlightenment.

Helen Klein Ross: Re: The Internet is the New 60's
2010-01-25 20:56:43

Love the title, Michael. Great analogy. Agree that webz have contributed to mass homgenization, for better or worse. It's why you're now more likely to identify with someone of your "consumer class" half a world away than you might with others in your hometown.

Only quibble: illegal music wasn't half as easy to come by in the 60s. Vinyl albums were a lot harder to pirate. Most people had to pony up $3 for a new release. That is, if album was mono. Stereo cost a dollar extra!

Mark: Re: We've got an App for that -- it's called the Web
2010-01-25 22:57:54

You have to hand it to Jobs & Co. They can sell salt water to a sailor and make him pay for the shipping. I've had 3 or 4 iPods, but I'll probably keep buying them not because they're a superior product, but because Apple has sold me on the idea that they're awesome and I can't enjoy life without one. Sad, I know.

russ: Re: Google Analytics, the cloud and missing numbers #fail
2010-01-26 10:30:16

were you using "vanilla" google analytics or the new(testing) asynchronous one?


Note that one of the plusses it lists is "enhanced collection." I can't cite it because I just glazed over it but I read that using this one should get better matches with regards to numbers.

Michael Bissell: Re: Google Analytics, the cloud and missing numbers #fail
2010-01-26 11:46:39

Russ: We were using "plain vanilla"; but this does point out that they saw a similar problem and are attempting to correct it.

Thanks for the link!

Alex Gatscher: Re: The Shorty Awards Scandal -- Manual Spam is still Spam
2010-01-27 17:38:44

First Rule in Advertising: You have to get their attention.

@FrankAdMan does it daily and real people that know, know.

His because... anwsers are genuinely heart felt by those that follow him.

Cheers to the kid too!

Don't throw away the dog cuz he has some tho..long live shortys.

Someone ought to mentor him...mmmm I wonder who...

A shorty mentor scholarship could be made available by F. with 2 hands tied behind his back.

I except great things from both.

Like I told Frank..(whoever he is,he is a devilish darling, and I actually look at him as Zig, learning from him everyday) If He were stock, I would invest in him.

Alexa Gatscher

Helen Klein Ross: Re: The Shorty Awards Scandal -- Manual Spam is still Spam
2010-01-27 19:41:17

Agree this is kind of a twempest in a teapot, but...here's my .02. I think it's highly unlikely this account belongs to a 16 yr old. Teens generally aren't on twitter, b/c none of their friends are. And what self-respecting 16 yr old would be caught dead describing himself as "I'm a fun, Energetic, and intelligent sixteen year old who loves Social Media, sports, and the business world!" Cmon. If I was creative director on this copy, I'd send it back for a rewrite. Sounds totally inconsistent w/ character. Not to say that a kid couldn't be produced to claim ownership. Oh, the twitterverse, where fictional characters abound. For betty or worse ;)

Shirt's tactics may be objectionable but not technically illegal. At least, not according to my read of the rules. http://shortyawards.com/rules However, if Shorty simply assigns awards to contenders with the most active bots (human or otherwise), of what value is a Shorty to an actual person?


Scott Hale: Re: The Shorty Awards Scandal -- Manual Spam is still Spam
2010-01-27 22:09:19

You've got a good point here...but @jonacoca is exactly who he says he is. I don't think it's spam either. If he is starting his tweets w/ a username, most of his followers will never see the tweet. And anybody can deal with ONE tweet with a request. After all, his followers are his community and they are welcome to unfollow if they don't like him soliciting favors.

Let's move the focus elsewhere - See the opportunity here? Kids have a different lifestyle than adults. They have more time and less concern about what people like us think. Jason (@iwearyourshirt) didn't ask @jonacoca to ask his followers to vote, but Jason did build a community of people that WANT to do this for him. Teens will do this of their own accord when they are included and validated as friends. They act upon trust.

Take this situation as an example of targeted marketing and community building for younger generations. Use it to your advantage rather than complain about it.

Nice post, thanks.

- Scott

Michael Grosheim: Re: The Shorty Awards Scandal -- Manual Spam is still Spam
2010-01-27 23:44:00

I would like to start off by saying that Alexa's comment gave me a headache. Inconstant and all over the place. Didn't make much sense. Moving on to Helen, no disrespect, but "Shirt" has not pitched anyone forcing them to vote. If we are going to react to a blog post, it should be factual. That said, what are we considering spam? Yes, while sending out random @ messages to people across the globe borders on a question of morality and character, it is far from unethical. However, sending those @ messages to followers is far from spammy; after all, his followers have the ability to unfollow and block.

Now, as far as tweeting the same message 125 times, does using an auto-tweet application make every marketing professional (or marketing wanna-be) a bot; let's not forget the hundreds of thousands of people who use Twitter to pitch products and ideas. And, let's not forget auto DM's that reply the same message to every new follower.

Maybe, @FrankAdMan is losing to a "shirt" becuase the "shirt" is a far more creative marketing idea. Just maybe.

Larry-bob: Re: The Shorty Awards Scandal -- Manual Spam is still Spam
2010-01-28 00:39:34

Fugitive Philipino cult leader @BroEliSoriano has been made the leader in the #education category by a flood of spam. I suggest the following nomination:

I nominate @BroEliSoriano for a Shorty Award in #spam because his followers have made him shorty leader in Education.

NTChaddius: Re: The Shorty Awards Scandal -- Manual Spam is still Spam
2010-01-28 00:55:22

Regardless of whether or not the account is Spam, I'd side with Jason (@IWearYourShirt) in this argument. I do like the point of the community that Jason has created, and if he generated enough support for someone to create that account for him well then more power to him. The same could have been done for @FrankAdMan. The Internet is its own world, and this is it's version of "Survival of the Fittest". That's what's so scary and awesome about it.

In looking at both accounts, I can't even see why @FrankAdman should be considered in the category. The account is a mess of replies and off the wall comments. But, even sorting through to what I'm assuming are the tangible/informative messages (and basing my opnion solely on them)... they lead to inane babble. For @IWearYourShirt, there are quick advertisements for the specific product of the day leading me to YouTube, Flickr, and everywhere else in the SM Universe.

I'm not sure how someone who is pretending to be a fictional ad-man from the 60's should even be considered in the category. Seems more of a method for self gratification and ego-boosting when more followers are obtained rather than being there as an advertiser. Jason, on the other hand, dedicates his time to the product, not himself. Sure he has some fun in between, and I'm not saying conversation with followers is a bad thing (that's the whole point of social media right?). But, even in those moments of fun, the product is still being represented. Regardless of the method by which he reached #1, I think the right advertiser came out on top.

Carri Bugbee: Re: The Shorty Awards Scandal -- Manual Spam is still Spam
2010-01-28 01:00:46

I dont see anything wrong with what @jonacoca is doing, which is what I told @FrankAdman yesterday. Anybody is entitled to shill for anyone else. Frankly, I find it less egregious than those who shill incessantly for themselves. Anyone who understands PR knows its always better to have someone else do the talking for you.

Its no different than a brand reaching out to tell me about their products when I tweet a relevant keyword. Kodak recently reached out to me when I tweeted about shopping for a new printer. Ive been targeted by Comcast, GoDaddy, MyMediaInfo, AlaskaAir and many other service providers or vendors this way. Those of us who tweet for brands know this is de rigueur and tweeters who are targeted this way rarely complain if the message is on target with their interests. Have you seen complaints from the people that @jonacoca has targeted?

I agree with Scott on this one. @iwearyourshirt has obviously developed a much more ENGAGED group of followers than anyone else vying for the advertising award. A snapshot of data via Twitalyzer indicates the clout and influence of @iwearyourshirt is FAR ABOVE its category competitors. Ive posted snapshots of analytics data of the top five competitors here: http://tweetphoto.com/user/CarriBugbee

Given that, its not a stretch to think that a fan might want to help @iwearshourshirt just for the hell of it. This is EXACTLY what every brand using social media hopes and plans for. Last year, at least two followers of @PeggyOlson voted for her multiple times during the first round of Shorty voting (this wasnt allowed during round two). I didnt know them personally and they had no idea who I was since I was anonymous. They just really liked @PeggyOlson.

Even if @jonacoca is being compensated in some way to tweet on behalf of @iwearyourshirt, I dont think thats against the rules, is it? Cant a brand pay their PR team to campaign or take out an ad if they want to? I'm sure they can pay their Web team to post something on their own Web site.

Finally, as Scott pointed out, its unlikely that anyone following @jonacoca is feeling spammed by his messages. They probably just see the one tweet.

I got targeted in this way on a music-related account I tweet for. The ENTIRE substance of that other accounts tweetstream was reaching out to music tweeters to alert them to a new music app. Hundreds of tweets that said the same thing, just targeted to different people. I didnt look at it as spam since the information was legitimate and well targeted. Others may have considered it spam. I don't know.

The point is, it's only spam if it's unwanted. And I doubt you can speak on behalf of the people @jonacoca is reaching out to.

Social Profiles: http://www.CarriBugbee.com

Michael T. Kramer: Re: The Shorty Awards Scandal -- Manual Spam is still Spam
2010-01-28 04:50:07

Probably the only people who really care about this issue are the ones who are losing to "I wear your shirt."

I'm more offended by people who self-promote ad nauseam by constantly posting those self-populating links to vote for them in the Shorty's. I will block one of those Tweeters in a New York Minute.

Frank Adman: Re: The Shorty Awards Scandal -- Manual Spam is still Spam
2010-01-28 15:54:17

If I'm not mistaken there are categories for Marketing, Innovation, and Spam. Let's not confuse them with Advertising. I've nominated @adbroad & @leeclowsbeard in #Advertising because I follow and enjoy them on Twitter

The Shorty Awards are intended to celebrate all that is Twitter. Give your #Advertising nomination for the Shorty Award to someone who, like great advertising, engages, entertains and charms within the constraints of Twitter. Cheers. F

NTChaddius: Re: The Shorty Awards Scandal -- Manual Spam is still Spam
2010-01-28 23:22:39

Frank's statement illustrates exactly my problem with those whom, I feel, misunderstand the point of Twitter.

His belief is that the Shorty Awards are intended to recognize those that stay "within the constraints" of Twitter. Through our recent tweeting, I get the impression that he feels his major competitor, @iwearyourshirt, has an unfair advantage due to his incorporation of various social media outlets. Yet, his links to random music bytes and images are no cause for his own discredit? The point of me trying to find a tweet of his that makes a relevant advertising point being harder than trying to screw a mormon girl on prom night aside, if he's right and this is what the Shorty Awards are about then it's just a pointless exercise in furthering self gratification and completely goes against the point of what Twitter has become.

The message on Twitter's homepage reads:

"Share and discover whats happening right now, anywhere in the world."

This, along with this debated decision to change it's default question from "What are you doing?" to "What's happening?" shows how Twitter has truly become an information tool. With that, the Shorty Awards should celebrate those who are able to find a creative way to share relevant information with their followers. Sure @iwearyourshirt links to youtube, flickr, etc. but lets also not forget his constant in between conversations and games with the community of followers he's created. But, those tweets that do share links are clearly doing something right, because followers are clicking through. Tweets read like headlines in the mess that is most users' twitter streams. If they generate enough interest to grab the reader's attention among the clutter and get them to click the link, then they have done so "within the constraints" of Twitter.

On a side note, I'm not saying the @FrankAdman account hasn't achieved the community aspect, clearly he has. I just fail to see what's getting advertised.

Short of someone who actually created the Shorty Awards giving their opinion, I think we leave it to their statement that the awards are left to "the community to decide". Although, the last minute auditing processes and the addition of a judges vote for this years finalists seem to be hinder that motive.

Let's also be aware that, in the grand scheme of things, all of this bantering and the eventual winners of the Shorty Awards really mean nothing. It will never gain as much worldwide attention as a baby kitten being tickled...

John Bissell: Re: Where regulation is good: Google Voice and Vonage
2010-02-03 09:46:09

This is an example of how everything is become digital, thus the same, yet still regulated as if everything is different. This will take a while to fix. We need to wait for all the people who are under 30 now to start making all the rules and running all the courts. By the time that happens, all this will be different and those youngsters will be the old out of touch people we are complaining abut now.

Adam Chubak: Re: Google Analytics, the cloud and missing numbers #fail
2010-02-03 20:43:07

I am not so sure it failed. It is suspicious to say the least. What I want to know what kind of 'submissions' were they. For our clients we run two analytic packages, GA and another that connects the form submission itself to all of the contact points. When we get form spam, we see this all of the time. Too many 'submissions' and next to no page views. If its spam we just see a filled out form with no page views.

I would cross check the submission forms. Sounds like bot spam. The spammers are smart and they can fill the form out without even triggering GA.

Michael Bissell: Re: Google Analytics, the cloud and missing numbers #fail
2010-02-03 20:50:27

Adam: Good thought, but it would be difficult for a bot to get to these pages as the project was embedded in an Iframe on ABC.go.com and you had to log into ABC to get to the sweepstakes page. If the microsite wasn't given a unique ID the visitor would get kicked back to the ABC login page based on a server-side redirect (so not a JavaScript thing).

And again, there were MORE registrations than GA pageviews -- and considering we only counted unique user ids (you could only register once per ABC managed account), a bot would have only shown a single registration, or the database would have been polluted with random, fake user IDs, which also didn't happen.

Adam Chubak: Re: Google Analytics, the cloud and missing numbers #fail
2010-02-03 21:00:23

Hmm...Interesting. These are the types of issues, that I love digging into. They drive me nuts, at times ;).

I know GA, is no good with redirects, unless you throw the cookie info into the url. I know you mentioned the server-side redirect, not sure if there were any redirects at play, but may have caused some issues. But not with just raw numbers, only segmenting those numbers. So that probably was not it.

The only thing, that may have played into this that I can think off hand would be in regards to russ. The code may have not loaded fast enough to be triggered. Could have hung on something or people just zoomed by before it loaded. The new async code could help to resolve these issues if they do indeed exist.

<tinfoilhat>With a huge traffic surge from one UA id, it may have tripped alarms at Google and they may have slowed it down.</tinfoilhat>

Kristen: Re: Who really uses Twitter? 60% of Twitter's traffic isn't on Twitter
2010-02-08 18:27:41

Twitter has great branding, but what is it that they are marketing other than the platform? I think one thing Twitter and the iPhone prove is that small, bit sized applications have a real market. But at least the iPhone makes money from it.

Kristen: Re: So many accounts, so few passwords
2010-02-12 15:42:58

One of the reasons I chose long ago to have a *source* for devising my passwords but keeping then all separate. I think right now only two accounts have the same password, and if someone *really* wants my Snapfish password, more power to them :)

Eric Weaver: Re: Suing over lack of originality
2010-03-02 12:52:17

There is a defense against that kind of thing, known as Showing Prior Art. There was once a co. called Cadtrak that threatened and/or sued everybody who did computer graphics. My employer showed them earlier-dated notebooks from MIT and told them to get lost, which they did. That said, if they do sue, it's a pain in the tuckus.

All "Letters Patent" effectively get one is the right to be a plaintiff in a lawsuit...

John Bissell: Re: A Primer on Internet Fame -- dancing babies, hamsters, numa numa, and more...
2010-03-02 14:52:41

thank you for the primer. I only knew a couple of these things, and I didn't know that the Numa Numa guy was called the Numa Numa guy.

Jane Blue: Re: Masterpieces created by sheer volume
2010-03-03 11:44:36

I don't think a random number of monkeys typing is ever going to produce Shakespeare. Otherwise, interesting thoughts, as always.

Michael Bissell: Re: Masterpieces created by sheer volume
2010-03-03 11:46:16

As we'll never get an infinite number of monkeys nor live long enough to contemplate infinity, it's always been one of those unprovable arguments -- but the idea is still mathematically valid.

Of course, I'll add that even with most content online being crap, someone still thinks about it, just like the writers, composers and actors in Casablanca all took their work seriously, and that thought should, in theory, stack the numbers towards greatness rising out of the stream of random video clips of kittens licking dogs and the inevitable LOLs and smileys that accompany them...

Sam: Re: Transmedia
2010-03-09 17:21:25

"Transmedia" was first coined in 2003. It became a bit Hollywood during some of the Battlestar Gallactica "cross platform" story initiatives and press (one of the Showrunners was very "transmedia" driven and used the phrase frequently). "Cross Platform" preceded "transmedia" but meant the same thing, without the pretense.

Regrettably, it's deeply misused by those who think that having "content" placed on a bunch of different platforms constitutes "transmedia." And, equally regrettably, it's good to use for certain Search results.

Actual "transmedia storytelling" is rare, where Users/Audience acquire storied content from different sources a bit like a puzzle. There are also "converged media" story telling applications, which more seamlessly blend storytelling across different delivery mediums but usually within a single content consumption experience (not disconnected by time/space).

Worse yet is the quest for making "social media" part of transmedia storytelling. Having a bunch of people shouting at a TV (in a bar, during a Game) does not extend the story to the Bar. The experience extends, but, not the story. A Twitter stream is no different. Subtle point, but, worth making.

What I'm getting at is that it's an old concept at this point, it's generally misused; it's still as pretentious as when first used. But, there is some meat in there that's worth delving into...it would just be nice if people said, "hey, like I'm telling my story in a bunch'a different places, cool, eh?"

Amanda Frech: Re: Transmedia
2010-03-15 15:12:36

I guess I'd also say that "This stuff is simple enough: we don't need to make it more complicated." Which new words inevitably do. I've done a good bit of work in university libraries, and you'd be amazed at the extent to which their propensity to give everything a digital new name *just because it's digital* confuses people who certainly do not need to be any more confused than they are already (cough: undergraduates).

For instance, when libraries started putting their card catalogs online, they started calling them OPACs (Online Public Access Catalogs). They did realize that their users couldn't be expected to parse that acronym, so what did they do? They gave their online catalogs cutesy names, names that were usually acronyms. Harvard has HOLLIS, the University of Virginia has VIRGO, and so on and so on. Every library used to just have "the catalog," so that if you learned what a "catalog" was at one library, you could apply that knowledge somewhere else.

Bruce Dickson: Re: Logorama
2010-03-16 08:35:01

Given how ugly I already find so many roadsides and urban streetscapes, watching this was almost too much to bear!

John Bissell: Re: Logorama
2010-03-18 09:46:54

How did they do this without a slew of law suits? It's all about the brand, and I think they took liberties with a few brands here. I would think at least Michelin and McDonald's would be upset by this.

Michael Bissell: Re: Logorama
2010-03-18 17:17:02

John: Really? You think McDonald's would be upset at the depiction of Ronald McDonald as a homicidal maniac? Well... maybe...

When I was at the Clio Awards last year they had a "mascot walk of fame" where the Michelin Man (Bib to his friends), Charlie the Tuna and a couple other brand mascots made it to the Brand walk of Fame. Ronald wasn't in attendance because McDonald's said, "Ronald McDonald is not a mascot, he's our Chief Happiness Officer."

Someone's been working the fry station a little too long...

Kristen: Re: Logorama
2010-03-19 17:45:35

It looks just like LA! LOLOL.

Kyra: Re: Logorama
2010-03-21 21:25:41

aww, they had Linux penguins in the zoo! :D
but yeah... LA really does look like a bunch of logos. sigh.

Audrey Eschright: Re: PDXBOOM -- The power of social media and the portland pipe bomb
2010-03-29 16:34:51

The map was actually set up by Reid Beels (@reidab), but several other people, including myself, helped set up a color-coding system, fix errors, export data for analysis, and so on. Definitely a group effort, including the hundreds who took the time to add a map marker documenting what they experienced.

Chris Daniel: KATU's story on the pipe bomb discovery
2010-03-29 16:35:24

Link to KATU's coverage of the discovery of the pipe bomb today: http://www.katu.com/news/local/89441702.html

Michael Bissell: Re: PDXBOOM -- The power of social media and the portland pipe bomb
2010-03-29 16:40:24

Audrey: Thanks for the correction -- I saw the original posting from @spinnerin as well as follow-ups to join the discussion on IRC about using Google Maps like this. But, of course, this was a fantastic example of the community building the tools, populating the tools, and using the tools.

All in less than 24 hours.

John Bissell: Re: PDXBOOM -- The power of social media and the portland pipe bomb
2010-03-29 17:03:02

And the power of social media continues. I found out about this story by finding this link on FB. Otherwise I would not have known.

Bruce Dickson: Re: PDXBOOM -- The power of social media and the portland pipe bomb
2010-03-29 20:53:34

Nice set of observations Michael. Hope there is no more of this activity - not exactly a couple of kids exploding some bungers in your letterbox!

Kyra: Re: That magical little tablet
2010-03-30 07:24:02

that's right, I read on techcrunch that the ipad won't have flash support! bad move on apple's part...

tom: Re: Transmedia
2010-04-06 14:48:01

Today, the official "Transmedia Producer's Credit" was approved by Producer's Guild:


It's a word that's here to stay.

Bruce Dickson: Re: Form (designers) versus Function (geeks)
2010-04-07 14:05:44

Could not have summed up the dilemma better. Apple suck totally for their whole control the user philosophy but Microsoft - with all their resources (leaving no room for excuses as a result) - consistently fail both the function and design tests!! No room for betas and patches is nothing but the truth. But the whole truth is that the world in general TOTALLY undervalues the absolute necessity and significance of GREAT design and its primacy in everything that helps make life itself great as well. Functionality to me is just a take it for granted ...

Teagan D: Re: Form (designers) versus Function (geeks)
2010-04-07 18:53:50

Good post; one thing in specific stuck out to me though: "We'll send out a patch post-release"

This mentality seems to have grown in apparent acceptability in recent years, with increased internet availability; nearly every program now has a 'patcher', and every patcher wants to update itself every day.

Despite the obvious inconvenience (I really hate patchers) of running daily, waiting for it to download, check, install and start your new version, it's simply bad form; it indicates to me that companies (and developers, in fact!) have become lazier- there's no reason to check for all the bugs, because users can report the problems for them and they can 'just patch it'. The increased presence of bug tracking systems being made public to the end users of large projects almost seems to confirm this... though I'm not sure it's such a horrible thing, it shouldn't be abused.

No longer do developers seem to want bulletproof software developed, management practically insisting against it so the product can get out the door faster. It leaves us users with a bunch of bug reports to file before we can actually use what we paid for...

I do, however, see the value of 'patchers' for software like QuickBooks/Quicken, and for antivirus solutions, it can be important to have the patcher run more frequently to keep things secured; but this should be used as a way to protect against newly discovered exploits; not bugs that management & the developers were too lazy or busy to fix.

I don't feel as hypocritical writing this as I might a bit ago, I've gotten a bit better at QA ;)

Apple seems to have it right with this, though... at least partially. I'm not really a fan of Apple as their interfaces feel too 'dumbed down', and I greatly dislike most of their 'control' policies (locking everything down 'for our own good'); I do yield to their way of making things very simple, however, they seem to do it right the first time.
In certain other instances, I've noted that if Apple can't package a complete feature, they simply exclude it; it could be the wrong thing to do, but it doesn't result in things breaking in the user's hands; I would imagine things like system-wide copy+paste and application multi-tasking on the iPhone OS might be an example of this...

They also have the ability to bring certain technologies into the spotlight for the purposes of advancing the entire field- MP3 players are the most obvious example of this, and now I'm hoping the same thing will happen with tablet PCs; as I'm sure you might recall, I love tablet PCs- it's just a shame that it seems as though the whole market has been stuck in the same rut for years; the same designs, the same specs, no originality. Apple's design isn't terribly original either (which is to say: not at all), but they will jump-start the market like they did with MP3 players. I'm hoping, at least. If not, I'll settle for Microsoft's Courier, which if you haven't seen it: http://t.conquent.com/courier
Looks way cool, if it matches up to the hype... and I love the form-factor. A book as a PC; perfect!

Anyway, your blog brought some interesting thoughts to mind, thanks.

John Bissell: Re: Form (designers) versus Function (geeks)
2010-04-08 18:21:10

A couple of points (Maybe a few). Michael is right. The products in question require people who don't speak the same language and have no empathy for the other side (i.e. form v function people). Both think that their part is the most important, so why do I have to pay any attention to the other.

However, this is not a new thing that just applies the tech industry faces. Civil Engineering v. Architecture - Car Designers, vs. drive train designers, Doctors v. nurses.

That solution is in management, that includes production criteria, education and enforcement. I know this method works from first hand experience in the Civil Engineering industry.

I also don't think the release early thing is new in American Industrial Culture either. This is in fact the exact problem that brought down GM, while the opposite - fix it on the line and release no flawed product - is what elevated Toyota.

Ian Schafer: Re: Social Media is NOT Advertising
2010-04-11 09:48:53

I partially disagree. I think advertising has its rightful place within social media, the value exchange just needs to be made. Clicks need to give way to engagement, purchased, binary impressions to building lasting impressions.

We had some firsthand experience with this working very well in our Bing/Farmville integration (http://www.allfacebook.com/2010/03/bing-advertises-on-farmville-acquires-400000-facebook-fans-in-one-day/), and these new fans are sticking around and becoming contributing members of a Bing fan community, and with whom we continue to interact.

What I do agree with is that advertising needs to be a bigger part of something. That "something" should be a marketing/CRM continuum that builds value over time.

Michael Bissell: Re: Social Media is NOT Advertising
2010-04-11 09:56:54

Ian: Your Bing/Farmville example is great, and perhaps my "truck trundling through town" metaphor is a little harsh, but I think the All Facebook blog underscores that while it was a successful branding campaign, it remains to be seen if Bing actually leverages the half million fans it has to it's advantage.

Of course, Bing has the advantage that their business model IS eyeballs. No credit cards, no going to the store to pick up a can of soup. Which means Social Media Advertising can be the first and final step for them.

aliza sherman: Re: Social Media is NOT Advertising
2010-04-12 13:57:47

OK, I skimmed but my quick thoughts

Social media advertising is actually only covered at moment by Facebook Social Ads. And it is advertising with some pretty freaky cool features that give it some social features and functionality as well.

So there is advertising the traditional internet way, then there is advertising the Social way with Social ads.

Then there is Social communications, Social marketing, Social blah blahddy bah.

Of course, just putting Social in front of it doesn't make it so.

However, Social Ads are more like the icecream truck with the community piece included - NOT driving a truck through the city with your company name on the side. It is a segway to conversation reaching people who have actual social connections. etc. etc.

Ian Schafer: Re: Social Media is NOT Advertising
2010-04-12 16:21:59

The beauty of the FarmVille/Bing effort was that we knew precisely what a visit from Facebook to Bing was worth. By a) paying per-engagement (knowing what those engagements were worth), b) understanding how much more valuable visits to Bing from Facebook are to Bing, and c) keeping the fans by showing them how Bing can help them make better decisions -- even if those decisions impact their actions in FarmVille, we succeed in driving informed trials of something they never would have tried otherwise. And hopefully winning some people over with some non-FarmVille classy interactions and opportunities to boot.

Kristen: Re: Social Media is NOT Advertising
2010-04-15 15:53:42

I agree 100% that social media is not a stand alone tool. It needs to be used in conjunction with other pieces in a campaign. But there is one thing about it that makes it highly attractive: the audience it hits. I make a study of GenY and how to reach them and marketing is a major portion of my industry function (I'm a cruiter, and GenY is quickly becoming our talent pool of choice.)

It would be interesting to see the demographics breakdown of the study.

Fallen Depths: Re: Time lost on Twitter
2010-05-25 09:41:44

"We" as a whole do have the tendency to overdo the social media but I think it has it's place for enriching our lives. For example, I would never have found your blog if not for Twitter and I have learned a lot from your writing that I actually apply to my work and life generally. I almost don't read books anymore because I follow so many blogs where I get to discuss current events or social trends with others who are interested in the same topics. I am also introduced to topics I didn't know anything about and so, again, my life is enriched much more than if I was one of my friends who sticks their noses up at the thought of spending time blogging or tweeting with make-believe people in the cloud.

It does have to be limited and is no replacement for a real network of friends or family but online life is good.

Oregoanna: Re: Time lost on Twitter
2010-05-25 13:37:28

A fundamental truth about knowingly and willingly frittering our lives away, if ever there was one.

Social media also add to the same damaging pattern that watching television for hours on end has additionally been doing to us, for decades.

(And sadly, while movie standards have fallen, the standards of TV production have actually been improving over the years, making it even harder to desist.)

The freak out insight about the impact of all this occurs when you take the time to add your sleep hours per day to your social media and computer hours each day to your television and DVD hours each day. There goes my life! And most of it spent just sitting on my butt!

Ad Broad: Re: iBooks -- Creative Epicenter or Gatekeeper?
2010-06-17 10:27:54

Interesting point. Creepily bringing us back to days when reigning publisher was censor-happy Catholic Church...love the visual, btw.

Eric Weaver: Re: iBooks -- Creative Epicenter or Gatekeeper?
2010-06-17 14:31:18

That's a new look... Steve as The Beast...

Michael Bissell: Re: iBooks -- Creative Epicenter or Gatekeeper?
2010-06-17 14:50:38

I'm looking for my hammer to throw through the screen...

Fallen Depths: Re: iBooks -- Creative Epicenter or Gatekeeper?
2010-06-17 17:19:57

Surely the market will control some of this, assuming you have an informed consumer. I know that's a big assumption and I can't see many complaints being made public..."...users unable to view pornography, interview at 10." But if there is a market out there for a more flexible morality that's going to impact the bottom line.

I'd let you borrow my hammer but I've been practicing my swing and I think I can..oh damn! Busted another screen...


Guest: Re: Inspecting my Navel Base
2010-08-30 09:23:24

The evolution of blogs was circumvented by the emergence of Facebook and then Twitter.

I'd take issue with casting blogs into the "social media" category. They aren't much different than Editorials and Letters to the Editor, which we don't consider "social media." Facebook/Twitter are "social advertising networks" under the guise of being social human networks.

Will blogs recover and resume their evolutionary growth? Or, will blogs be devoured by the carnivorous social/ad networks, as human dialogue is reduced to Check-In notifications?

It depends on whether or not people give up on blogs, which still hold the promise of thoughtful discourse in the face of extinction.

Bruce Dickson: Re: Inspecting my Navel Base
2010-08-30 10:24:19

You must have missed a recent edition of NPR's Fresh Air Michael (no doubt too busy at the time tweeting or blogging).

Latest science re-confirms old science that says there are limits to what the brain can in reality retain.

Trying to tak...e in too much information day in and day out (24/7), the way we have gone, actually causes a range of negative effects. One of them being reducing your capacity to retain and remember things!

So even if you did finally come across an interesting blog or tweet (yes, this is asking a lot), increasingly the chances are that you subsequently won't remember it! (Unless you happen to have a much younger and less 'full and overloaded' mind.)

Another key finding is that human brains are fundamentally keyed to focusing on and paying attention to one thing at a time. So all this nonsense about multi-tasking is just that ... it actually makes people less efficient, less effective and less productive according to most of the scientific findings!

And a final nugget for you which I know you will find personally relevant. The best way to release and foster your creativity is apparently to create a calm space where the mind is able to turn off all these extraneous inputs and 'noise'.

All common sense to me, just as not taking at least four weeks leave for vacation time each year is unhealthy and that doing so actually makes people more productive at work, not less!

Kristen: Re: Disposable Personas
2010-09-30 17:46:25

I wholeheartedly agree. I recently had extremely poor service at one of my local Applebees. I showed my displeasure by not leaving any tip; something I have only done once or twice in my entire life.

A few years ago, I was offered (and accepted) a position with someone I had worked briefly with when she started a new company. Well, I ended up having to file a wage complaint with the Bureau of Labor and Industry a few months later. I had a decision to make about how to pursue the claim, and reached out to my local professional community for advice. She and are both in the same profession, and when I posted my request for advice, I didn't mention her name, the company name, or even the industry out of respect. Not for her, but for my own professional reputation.

Sam: Re: New for the Sake of New
2010-10-08 18:50:42

This sentiment is not reserved for [old?] men. I've been taking my teenage daughters shopping this week for new mobile phones after 3 years. It's like going from the Stone Age to the Industrial Revolution, in 3 years time. They are overwhelmed and underwhelmed at the same time.

Best comment was, "I don't want to have my Facebook with me all the time, it would be annoying. I just want a phone to text with." No interest in iPhones. No interest in Android. They just want a phone. They've reached tech burnout by 15. What happens when they are running a business in 10 years?

More. Everywhere. Instantaneous. Everything. Without thought, perspective or tangible value.

When "new" is too fleeting to last, is it only good for momentary amusement, since there's no time to linger?

Kyra Weaver ‎: Re: The Great Technical Disconnect
2010-10-21 18:40:00

"clutch ? ignition? what are those? btw give me the keys to your website because I can drive better than you." seriously, makes you want to throttle people.

Tracey Rovira Steele: Re: The Great Technical Disconnect
2010-10-21 18:41:01

Loved this. I deal with the marketing/operations struggle daily. My marketing guy brings me pretty page designs put together in Word...which are based on nothing that will ever work in reality. A favorite is how none of the key players can stand still long enough to do things right, so everything we work with is a patchwork quilt of effort by different vendors/friends/relatives who could give them something quickly. And then they wonder why a 2 MB image file looks like crap on an 80 inch banner...

Rebekah: Re: The Great Technical Disconnect
2010-10-25 11:15:53

Yep, thats the truth alright. Thats exactly how it works.

But what happens if the IT guy is actually moonlighting? And what if he has just a few hours per week to give, hours that he gives to critical operations such as keeping the servers running?

And what happens if maybe, just maybe, we try to avoid Michaels problem and err in the other direction? What if, to avoid his problem, we tie up the system so tight that the management wont allow anything to get done until the IT guy has signed off on it? Thereby creating a clog in the system where people start to believe all projects go to die.

People get really, really upset.

Now add the people who are lined up screaming to get the IT guys attention, all mad that he hasnt responded in weeksor monthsand now they just want someones head to roll because their own projects cant get done and even more people are screaming at them.

Then what???

Jane Blue: Re: Comcast, Netflix and the Mystery of the Modem
2010-10-31 10:46:19

My Comcast modem connection goes off every once in a while too, and I don't even bother to call them. You may be on to something.

guy: Re: Reverse Anthropomorphism
2010-11-11 15:27:31

u didnt even make up that word u just think u did

Michael R. Bissell: Re: Reverse Anthropomorphism
2010-11-11 18:34:06

I'm sure others have put the words together on their own before, but so many ideas are invented by so many people at the same time.

Besides, my main point was to find a new word to describe the concept...

David Jacobs: Re: Amazon Shouldn't Have Shut Down WikiLeaks
2010-12-02 09:40:13

I'll agree with you on threatening phone calls from senator's and Lieberman is a real piece of work but businesses like Amazon have aright to do business with whom they wish. WikiLeaks founder is now wanted by Interpol. I don't think Amazon wants to be anywhere near this firestorm, Lieberman or not.

Michael Bissell: Re: David Jacobs
2010-12-02 09:44:47

Of course you can choose who you do business with -- before you engage with them. This is why we have contracts.

Cloud environments are becoming more important, and there really aren't a lot of options. If my website can be dropped simply because they "don't like it" then we're in a dangerous area of censorship.

If, however, I clearly violate the terms of service for my contract with my provider, then they can, and should, cut me off.

Part of my problem is that, from what I can tell, they haven't given any reason for shutting off WikiLeaks -- nothing to the organization itself and no comment to the press. Makes it harder to judge what's really going on.

David Jacobs: Re: Amazon Shouldn't Have Shut Down WikiLeaks
2010-12-02 11:10:10

We could go back and forth for awhile on the political aspects of this, so I'll skip it and move on to the really interesting and more important part of your comments which is the dependent situation cloud services puts companies in . When you're outsourcing a major part of your inner workings out you certainly have to be pretty careful. But WikiLeaks has always been questionable businesses that, no doubt, Amazon probably should have strayed away from but also WikiLeaks should have known if the temperature got too hot, Amazon, being a very mainstream business, was going to have to bail.

Russell Gilman-Hunt: Re: Amazon Shouldn't Have Shut Down WikiLeaks
2010-12-02 13:48:33

I agree. From a technical and a business viewpoint, it makes me less likely to consider AWS services for a webserver.

Marissa Beatty: Re: The Death of Email
2011-01-05 09:28:38

Wow, snail mail took millenia to die, email's dead already after just a couple of decades?

Michael Bissell: Re: The Death of Email
2011-01-05 09:29:07

Everything's faster on the Internet... Just assume that a millennium has passed online in the last couple of decades.

Adam Boettiger: Re: Time for a New Reality
2011-01-17 13:25:35

The moment you said AT&T, I knew instantly what your problem was...LOL

Michael Bissell: Re: Time for a New Reality
2011-01-17 13:26:04

Let's see what happens when Verizon get's infected by iPhone users...

Adam Boettiger: Re: Time for a New Reality
2011-01-17 16:25:19

Yeah. Ok. I'm betting my calls still don't get dropped though.

Bruce Dickson: Re: Alien Technology and Government Conspiracies
2011-01-23 13:19:10

Too funny! Particularly last line.

And yes it is a bit scary if the pace of technological change, alone, ends up determining our social, cultural and psychological futures.

(Not to mention the more and more dramatic choice of options available with which to kill each other.)

Kyra Weaver ‎: Re: Alien Technology and Government Conspiracies
2011-01-24 10:06:57

So Al Gore didn't invent the internet? Or is he an alien?

... I'm thinking maybe the latter. ;)

Justin Pedersen: Re: The Demand For The Loss of Creativity
2011-01-25 12:00:34

I'd hate to have that state of mind!

Michael Bissell: Re: The Demand For The Loss of Creativity
2011-01-25 12:04:04

Which state of mind? The one that picks the world apart and says, "Crap..." or the one that accepts things handed from big brother, big industry, big religion etc.?

Justin Pedersen: Re: The Demand For The Loss of Creativity
2011-01-25 12:04:40

I am sorry, Michael, I was referring to the Apple state of mind. I hadn't read those before and that is the one that really bothers me.

Renate Ruby: Re: The Demand For The Loss of Creativity
2011-01-25 12:05:19

John - I appreciate your article, but as an Apple head, I have to say that the simplicity of the product makes it easier for me to use the machines and to increase my own creativity. I just finished redesigning my own website using iWeb (gasp) and because it's so easy to understand and use, I could do it myself. It has some serious limitations - like when my friend Bill the web designer tried to help me add some tags to it he couldn't find how to see the code - but for someone like me, who doesn't care to see the code or even understand the code it's been great.

If I had to build my own gears - I'd never ride a bike either - and I like riding a bike.

Michael Bissell: Re: The Demand For The Loss of Creativity
2011-01-25 12:06:04

Renate - I think the problem that John outlines really well is that the simplification eventually removes the possibility of doing more. Shimano changed the industry to the point that we *can't* build our own cogsets anymore.

My fear is that Apple is leading the way to the point your web friend won't *ever* see the code, and we're all stuck with Apple's vision of what a website, or an app, "should look like."

Renate Ruby: Re: The Demand For The Loss of Creativity
2011-01-25 12:11:05

@Michael - I hear that, but I just don't think it will happen. As my beloved husband revels in pointing out to me, Apple still only has 10% of the market. Computers do allow for a high level of creativity for those who really want to understand them. It doesn't take much until someone interested in doing more with their machine runs up against the constraints of the Apple platform and moves onto something else. I'm just not ever going to be one of those people. Without Apple I'd be stuck staring at a blank screen feeling stupid. I'm a right brain creative and Apple makes it possible for me to use a computer in a way I could never with a PC - but those friends of mine who actually understand how PCs work don't find Apples to be any fun because they can't mess with them, and I think fun usually wins.

Justin Pedersen: Re: The Demand For The Loss of Creativity
2011-01-25 12:28:52

John, one of my friends the other day was so happy that the app store was on her mac. I was absolutely floored. Remember when we use to say "my phone is a mini computer"? Now people are excited that their computer can do mini programs.

John Bissell: Re: The Demand For The Loss of Creativity
2011-01-25 12:38:19

@ Renate: I think there are two points here, and neither one is that the apple platform is bad - because what you say is right: Apple makes things work for some people where they would not otherwise. The 2 points are: 1. The religious zealotry that some people place on a brand or platform is uncomfortable and ugly and is spurred by some of the things I mentioned - and that Michael mentioned, and 2. The simplified interface that limits options also removes choice and creativity. I don't see apple taking over. However, we have seen too many other industries remove our choice. Nothing can be fixed, everything gets thrown away, no gauges on cars, no choice in gears on bikes. We trend that we. It's a repeat them in George Orwell Books. Apple has found a way, and others will follow.

Kristen: Re: The Cloudy Meaning of The Cloud
2011-01-26 16:33:44

Tell that to my buddy whose specialty has been "load balancing" since the early 90's :D

Bruce Dickson: Re: Social Media Slot Machine
2011-02-23 16:53:41

Boettiger's original piece is hitting the mark on the new currency being our attention and the related time it absorbs to give it. In relation to your own comments, thinking that there is definitely that aspect of addiction ... find parallels to it linked predecessor, the obsession many people get caught up in with wanting to hear the 'latest news' - news junkies. Obsessed and addicted with the 'new'. It seems at times to be a choice to run away from real life or at least has that effect of 'real life' ...

Tad Benson: RE: Content for Social Media
2011-03-02 19:57:34

Good post, Michael. I'd like to tell you about our colocation services next time I see you at the water cooler. I'll keep it to 140 characters.

Michael Bissell: RE: Content for Social Media
2011-03-02 19:57:53

Note that I specifically omitted colo services after our conversation this morning. But, as you know, it's the cabana in Vegas that gets my attention for hosting...

Jane Blue: Re: Michael Bissell: You are never alone
2011-06-09 11:03:43

Somehow I really don't like to see mothers walking their babies in a stroller, and often the dog too, while on a phone. I want to see them interacting with their babies and their dogs.

Michael Bissell: Re: Michael Bissell: You are never alone
2011-06-09 11:07:32

So what you're saying is that the baby IS alone. But that's just because we haven't figured out how to wire the baby into the Internet yet.

Resistance is futile.

Jane Blue: Re: Michael Bissell: You are never alone
2011-06-09 11:07:55

And the dog.

Michael Bissell: Re: Michael Bissell: You are never alone
2011-06-09 11:07:56

I'm sure the dog has a chip, so the mom might not be there for the dog, but someone is monitoring him.

Bob: Re: Michael Bissell: You are never alone
2011-06-09 11:08:46

It is all becoming very Borg-like. Somewhere between mobile devices and the dreaded juggernaut of Facebook, we are losing our ability to function w/o being plugged in and checking-in with the Hive to see what we should think, do and buy.

At least Windows/Mobile original campaign last year: "Be Here Now" made an attempt to put mobile engagement into perspective, as a part-time tool, not a constant-on. Plus, it was a nice reference, with a hint of patchouli, back to a time of life in the meatspace.

"we aren't really ever in the middle of nowhere, and we're never alone. "

Or, we're dead center in the middle of nowhere and more alone and alienated than ever before.

Flip a coin.

FactsRus: Re: Michael Bissell: "We need to..." Internet Marketing Myths
2011-07-05 13:46:07

iPhone is only 8.75% of total mobile market, inclusive of feature phones.


In terms of smartphone %, it hovers between 25-30% (domestic/US).

Michael Bissell: Re: FactsRus
2011-07-05 17:17:18

Hey FactsRus,

I was using current sales for my numbers which I pulled from Wikipedia at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Smartphone#Operating_system_market_shares -- but whichever numbers you use, it still makes more sense to create apps for a broad a market share as possible, which, biased as I may be, still seems to mean web sites that are formatted for the low-resolution interface.

Of course, there are times you want to get more functionality out of a mobile experience than you'd get from web-only apps, but this all just underscores the "figure out why you're dong something, make a plan, and then do things to support that plan."

FactsRus: Re: Michael Bissell: "We need to..." Internet Marketing Myths
2011-07-05 17:43:04

@bissell, I am in agreement with you wholeheartedly - But, the numbers I use are generally a reflection of 100% of the complete mobile market, where iOS is but a wee, tiny fraction (it had been at 6.75% for quite awhile, now has bumped to 8.75%, using Comscore as a guide).

iPhone apps make about zero sense; rarely do they include functionality that could not be done at the browser level (and, most new browsers have GPS and accelerometer access).

It is also very possible (we do it all the time) to build for mobile web and then wrap in "app shells" so that people find you in both Search and App Store Search. The only problematic porting is iOS; but, for Android, Windows and Meego (which will have a life on netbooks), it's pretty simple and takes only one build.

What is astounding is that marketers have overlooked how a mobile device, at it's heart, is a 2-way communication device. That's really why we buy them and carry them around. It's the great un-tapped channel (and, I don't mean single message SMS!)

Whether it's Facebook, Groupon, Foursquare or Twitter, why dilute the value of your brand and add to someone else's? Yup, use them to drive traffic and value back to your own turf. Whether you're an independent coffee shop or National retailer, driving people away from your own real estate seems foolish.

Bob: Re: Kristen Fife: Google+ Scares Me
2011-07-12 10:05:40

The T&C are no different than any other similar platform where you are uploading user generated content and tapping into a network delivery system.

You must grant a license (typical) for this to happen, you retain copyright (that is key and very good that it's spelled out).

If you do not want to grant a non-exclusive license, then you should keep that material on a private site/domain that you own and control.

The price of tapping into anyone's free network is a non-exclusive license. It's not intended to be for everything. Only somethings. 750,000,000 people are "just fine and dandy" with Facebook selling their data to 3rd parties and now engaging in facial recognition technologies. It's a matter of trust. At this point, I trust Google far more than the others out there.

Kristen Fife: Re: Kristen Fife: Google+ Scares Me
2011-07-20 13:26:13

My biggest issue with Google is the "in perpetuity" clause. Facebook T & C state that if you delete content, it is gone except if others are using it:

1. For content that is covered by intellectual property rights, like photos and videos ("IP content"), you specifically give us the following permission, subject to your privacy and application settings: you grant us a non-exclusive, transferable, sub-licensable, royalty-free, worldwide license to use any IP content that you post on or in connection with Facebook ("IP License"). This IP License ends when you delete your IP content or your account unless your content has been shared with others, and they have not deleted it.
2. When you delete IP content, it is deleted in a manner similar to emptying the recycle bin on a computer. However, you understand that removed content may persist in backup copies for a reasonable period of time (but will not be available to others).

Bruce Dickson: Re: - Violated by Madison Avenue
2011-07-21 16:52:47

Love it, and couldn't agree more. Marketing overkill and mental & physical invasiveness is really reaching the point where before long some imaginative tourist destination will see the opportunity to start marketing the fact that visitors can relax in a place in which all marketing is banned

Jane Blue: Re: - Violated by Madison Avenue
2011-07-21 16:53:40

I hate those characters at the bottom of the screen, especially since I use captioning.

Russ: Re: - It's not your bank... It's Apple's and Amazon's
2011-07-22 15:47:39

It's insidious, isn't it?

And if you use PayPal, that's another can of worms. They're not a bank but people treat them like one. And you can give them permission to just draw money out of your account too.

: Re: - Leaving Seattle (or why you should keep your ticket close)
2011-11-13 13:23:52

Kristen Fife: Re: - Marissa Mayer and the Change in Yahoo's Remote Workforce
2013-02-27 08:58:36

Martin, I stand by my belief that Yahoo is making the right decision, and the culture in Silicon Valley, and most other global tech companies, is currently face to face collaboration.

Yahoo is defining productivity in different ways than "minutes worked" in terms of collaboration and innovation. "Cost Benefit" is not electric bills or dollars per square foot, but synergy. While I advocate flexibility for people to work occasionally from home if needed, in the case of Yahoo the abuse has been widespread and long-standing. Redefining the work culture is a needed strategy: http://www.businessinsider.com/why-marissa-mayer-told-remote-employees-to-work-in-an-office--or-quit-2013-2

Morgan G.: Re: - Building Your Online Brand
2013-04-02 10:03:21

To your point on Facebook's privacy settings. I find the chatter of the last year on this point interesting, because it is not necessary to change your name to a nickname in order to avoid being searched on Facebook. It is still possible to have security settings such that you cannot be sought without permission. As the only person with my name on the internet (quite literally, as I regularly protect my online brand), it is important to me to keep up the wall between my private and professional lives. Your other tips are very on point, I just don't agree that one must use a nickname on Facebook instead of their actual name. Of course, this comes with additional diligence of not posting comments in groups or events that are open to the public. That may be too limiting for many, which then leads to the next "best practice" of using a nickname.

Edie S: Re: - Building Your Online Brand
2013-04-03 08:42:56

Morgan, what Kristen said was that she uses a nickname for her PERSONAL Facebook page and keeps a separate account for her professional image with her real name. Yes, you can set your privacy settings so that you aren't "found" on Facebook, to some degree, but if you are a publicly known figure it might be better to have a separate account. There is very little, if any, truly "private" information online. This is just a strategy to protect your "brand".
Great information Kristen! Thank you.

Rachel Y: Re: - Building Your Online Brand
2013-04-08 15:46:40

Thank you Kristen, this is extremely helpful! As someone who is relatively young in the working world, I want to make sure that I am establishing a personal brand that accurately reflects my talents, interests, and qualifications. Thank you for your wise advice and no-nonsense perspective. This is exactly what I needed!

Kristen Fife: Re: - Building Your Online Brand
2013-04-10 10:02:45

Glad I'm able to help. Morgan, I have two FB pages under different email addresses and names. The personal one is where I "like" pages, people etc. and join a wide variety of groups that might be detrimental to my professional life.

Kristen Fife: Re: - Building Your Online Brand
2013-05-09 11:19:48

This article just came out on LinkedIn today, and it is relevant to this post so I am including a link here:

Marketing Yourself on LinkedIn.

Isaac Duke: Re: - Client Vendor Relationships
2013-08-14 11:34:06

Another WOW! I love when people stick up for clients. I am a salesman, so I am constantly hearing how bad customers are. I wouldn't be able to buy the house I live in, have the children I have, or do any of the things I do if it weren't for my customers. I am thankful they want to do business with me, and I want to work with people who are demanding, because those tend to be the ones that can afford my services. The easy customers tend to be low-budget customers.

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