There’s No Social In Your Media

One of the lines in the Bush song, “Everything Zen” says there’s no sex in your violence.

I’ve been thinking that a lot while watching the content that people have been posting to Google+, except the version I’ve been thinking is that there’s no social in your media.

One of the opportunities we have online is to demonstrate how similar we are to each other. That’s a valid and worthwhile pursuit, but at the same time, you want to show how different you are as well. Continue reading “There’s No Social In Your Media”

Social Media Smoke & Mirrors

Bill & PaparazziOne of the things I find laughable about Social Media is that it’s sold to people that don’t know anything about Social Media.

This makes it possible for people who are ABSOLUTE GARBAGE at creating and maintaining their own online presence to make money telling other people how THEY should represent themselves or their companies online.

I’m not the type of person to knock the next man’s hustle, but that’s exactly what it is.. A HUSTLE. Smoke & Mirrors.

There are LOTS of people who are legitimate and present great solutions to their clients, but some people are just embarrassingly horrible at Social Media and still they’re heralded as gurus amongst their fans. Continue reading “Social Media Smoke & Mirrors”

Street Game 08: Online Dating & Sand To The Beach

Bill & Frank discuss MiGente, MySpace, OkCupid, Facebook and the potential pitfalls of one gal inviting another gal along on a date as a “third wheel”.

Listen / Download => Audio Version (.mp3) [11:27]

Send “Street Game” questions to @BillCammack or DGstreetgame@gmail.com

More Episodes: http://billcammack.com/category/datinggenius/streetgame/

Are You Still Relevant? [Part 1 of 2]

Rox, Grace, Bill & Laura
Rox, Grace, Bill & Laura – April, 2008

I had an interesting experience happen two months ago back in May, which I talked about in “Who Are You?”. Basically, I sent a friends request on Facebook to someone I was friends with in Elementary School and she had ABSOLUTELY NO IDEA who I was! πŸ˜€

Now, of course, there are like a million people I’ve forgotten since Elementary, so her perception of me (or lack thereof, haha) isn’t a big deal. My perception of her happened to remain fresh because she’s an actress and shows up in films or on television every couple of years, so I pretty much couldn’t forget her if I tried! πŸ˜€

However.. The situation made me consider what I’ve done… or perhaps how my mind works when it comes to my friends. My system retains what I’ll call positive, negative or neutral remembrances of people or they exit my mind entirely. All the time, I’ve run into friends that I haven’t seen for years, and we picked up our conversations and hangouts as if we had just seen each other yesterday. That’s because my system operates on a kind of suspended-animation basis.

In my mind, I don’t stop being friends with someone because we’re out of contact. I either have a generally good, bad, neutral or “zero” (forgotten) feeling about them when I run into them the next time, and then we take it from there. That’s partially what makes me who I am as a video editor. I can see footage and retain it in my mind and then make the video from memory instead of having to see it physically on the screen. I never “rough cut”. I’m always laying video and audio down exactly as I wanted it in my mind, checking it and then adjusting it. Continue reading “Are You Still Relevant? [Part 1 of 2]”

Social Media Responsibility and Ethics

Social Media Responsibility and Ethics

So the other day, I took some pictures (so what’s new?), except one of the chicks we were hanging out with wasn’t feeling confident about her looks.

There were some general shots that she happened to be in, but then when she was asked to specifically be in a pic (not with me, haha so let’s not start with the “Maybe it was YOU?” πŸ˜€ ), she declined, saying that she wasn’t photogenic.

* This actually happened to be incorrect, but that’s an image and self-esteem topic, having nothing to do with ethics…. *

Sharing

So I had told the group I was going to share the pictures with them. When I reviewed the set the next day, I realized that there were a couple of pictures that the non-photogenic chick (I guess I’ll call her NPC) hadn’t “signed off” on. Continue reading “Social Media Responsibility and Ethics”

Social Media in Action

On Thursday, January 1st, 2009 at 3:02 pm, I made a post about a client who didn’t pay me the money he owed me. Here is the Recent Visitor Map for just that one article, ~38 hours later (approximately a day and a half):

Bill Cammack Recent Visitors Map Click here to view 1048 x 857 image

This is Social Media in Action. “Reach” is now determined by how much time and effort you’re willing to put in to maintain your internet presence.

When it comes to determining “Reach”, the days of “who lives next to that person?” are OVER. The days of “Is he a radio personality or performer or some other type of celebrity?” are *OVER*. Connections are made and maintained virtually.

People are aligning themselves by values, aptitude & beliefs now, instead of by local territory and “Accident of Birth”. The “lines” are being re-drawn as people get to sample other people’s mentalities through reading their blogs, listening to their podcasts, watching their videos and selecting to find out more about people they feel in-tune with.

Jeff Pulver, Kathryn Jones, Kfir Pravda & Keren DaganJeff Pulver called it his “Social Media Living Room”. He was absolutely right. The people that you know live wherever they live, but we all come together, in various locations… virtual locations.

Sometimes, we meet up IRL, like @ PodCamps or BarCamps or SXSW or TweetUps or meetup.com or Gary’s Guide events. In the meantime, in between time, we’re reading each other’s blogs and communicating with other through social media sites like Twitter, Ning, Facebook, MySpace, etc etc etc. Continue reading “Social Media in Action”

Conversion of “Cred”

For a couple of months, I billed myself as a “Social Media Expert”, which I am. πŸ˜€

I removed that title because in the grand scheme of things, it didn’t say anything specific or useful about me. It was mostly “Keeping up with the Joneses”. I would look at people billing themselves as SMEs and go “um… if THAT PERSON’S an expert, I’m FOR DAMNED SURE an expert!” hahahaha πŸ˜€

I stopped thinking about it a long time ago, but today, I read an interesting article by Jeremy Pepper, entitled “Taking Stock – Can Social Media Do What It Claims?” that’s briefly rekindled my interest in the topic. Amongst some other interesting things, Jeremy writes:

JP: … While people are glomming onto social media, there seems to be very little being done in the circular nature of the social media consultants.

You don’t hear/read about campaigns that are helping change the world. You don’t hear/read about campaigns that are being done with the large agencies or consultants that are trying to help make the world a better place.

You read social media people talking about social media … and that seems to be it. It’s the self-fulfilling prophecy of Valleywag’s 250. And, I have written about this before, and nothing much changes.”

Jeremy then goes on to name a few Echo Chamber Bigwigs and he gives some suggestions for useful things they might do with their massive numbers of followers on various social media sites.

As I looked at his list and what he was suggesting that these people do, I was reminded of my post from four months ago, entitled “Content / Production Value / Popularity”. As a content creator, I’ve been very interested in how people acquire followings and what they utilize their fan base for. By March 2008, when I wrote C/Pv/P it was clear to me “what’s going on around here”. πŸ˜€

And, yes…. This is getting back to the point of what this has to do with Jeremy’s post. πŸ˜€

What’s going on around here is that people are trying to sell stuff. Period. There are two ways to do this, but they end up at the same destination. The first way is to create content that people like and enjoy and pass on to their friends, who then become viewers and hopefully PASSIONATE viewers and carry the flag for you to their towns, cities and countries all over the world. If you look at the videos from when DiggNation came to NYC and there were lines all up, down and around the block of nothing but excited FANS, FANS, and more FANS, that’s a prime example.

The other way to “sell stuff” is to base your show or site around someone that comes with a pre-fab fan base. If you don’t understand this, it’s often confusing when you see people with LESS TALENT brought on board when there are people with obviously WAY MORE TALENT available for the project. For instance, let’s say someone’s a way better musician/producer than I am, but they don’t have any social media props. If you put the two of us up for the same project (read “selling stuff” inside the Echo Chamber), you can either HOPE that people will like his/her music, and it will catch on, OR you can go with what you know, which is that I currently have 993 Twitter followers, 734 Facebook “friends”, 636 Myspace friends, etc, etc, and Google loves to Nom Nom on everything that I do, so you can find me at the top of the search results for Bill (#5 of 388,000,000), NYC dating (#7 of 309,000), video editor resume (#2 of 802,000) and Emmy Award Editor (#1 for my resume and #2 for my Indy Mogul episode, out of 612,000 English pages).

So when you look at it for what it is, what counts inside the Echo Chamber (aka the Fishbowl) is “reach”, or perhaps how much of a built-in marketing machine the person brings to the table and *NOT*…. I repeat… *NOT* their ability to make anything that remotely resembles a professionally produced or edited video. You do NOT have to have ANY talent as an on-air personality… you have to have a fan base. You do NOT have to have a track record of well-done videos… you have to have a fan base. You do NOT have to look good COUGHunlessyou’reafemaleCOUGH… you have to have a fan base.

This is one of the reasons the term “famous for nothing” is tossed around so much. If you ask “do you know XYZ?” or “have you heard of XYZ”, the answer will be “yes”. If you ask what that person does, you’ll see perplexed facial expressions and the scratching of heads. πŸ˜€ Basically, these people are popular NOW, and unless you were around back in the day when they initially developed their fan base, you can’t figure out WHY anybody would care what they said about ANYTHING outside of whatever their ultra-narrow niche of expertise is…. whatever that might be. This leads me to my point about Jeremy’s article

There is a difference between the ability to attract attention and the ability to influence those whose attention you’ve attracted.

Lindsey Chen and I dropped a post two days ago, and two hours after I pressed “publish”, the visitor map for that one article looked like this:

Lindz & Bill 2 hours in - July 30, 2008

Map for Top 10 Mistakes Guys Make When Trying To Get A Girl

What this means is that we wrote something that people were interested in reading.
What this does NOT mean is that we have any influence over anyone who read it.

Is it POSSIBLE that people might listen to what we have to say on topics other than dating? Yes. However, the fact that we have X amount of “eyeballs” doesn’t necessarily translate to the ability to mobilize ANY of those people in the direction of a cause. This is what makes it seem like social media is full of hot air. πŸ˜€

What we’re developing is “cred”. The important question is “what area/field are we developing ‘cred’ IN?” If you’re famous for asking people questions, why should anyone care what YOU have to say? If you’re famous for being attractive… why should anyone care what YOU have to say? If you’re famous because your parents are famous? If you’re famous because you did a cool video one time? If you’re famous because you have a lot of subscribers or video views on YouTube?

Who cares?

That’s what happens when people aren’t following you for YOU, and they’re following you because of what they’re getting out of following you. If you get advance information about gadgets, people are going to follow you… Not because they LIKE you, but because THEY want to find out what YOU found out. If you made a bunch of money and sold a startup, that’s great for you! πŸ˜€ and congrats!… but people are going to follow you to see if THEY can learn what YOU learned and do the same thing YOU did. It doesn’t mean they like you or care what you have to say. I’m sure that most people that hit my site for dating advice don’t even read the poster’s name, or if they read it, even remember it. πŸ™‚

Having said that… Along the lines of Jeremy’s question and request: “show that social media can change the world”, I do remember a situation where Chris Brogan rallied people to support Amanda Gravel in an event she put on to support someone. I’ve also seen musicians publicized and supported via social media. Very recently, Whitney Hess wrote a heartfelt post about someone she knew who died. Jay & Ryanne have traveled to REMOTE PARTS OF THE WORLD to teach people who never would have found out about it about blogging, internet connectivity and videoblogging.

So.. I’m not saying it’s impossible. It’s definitely worth a try to utilize social media for something other than publicizing ourselves, πŸ™‚ However, the “cred” necessary for becoming known as an authority that people can look up to to point out worthwhile causes is NOT being built up through demonstrating one’s proficiency at Public Relations. You can talk about business and social media ALL DAY, and if you turn around and don’t pay people WHAT YOU OWE THEM and ON TIME, your “cred” is ZERO. You can get interviews with “important people” ALL DAY, and if the word in the street is that you treat your fans and followers like garbage, your “cred” is ZERO. You can sell as many businesses as you want, and if nothing you have to say RIGHT NOW is original, current and relevant… your “cred” is ZERO.

So, if you’re looking for people to announce when they finally make an iPhone with the camera on the correct side so we can do video iChat with it, you’ve come to the right place. If you’re looking for people that can tell you what tools and sites to use to enhance the productivity of your company… you’ve come to the right place. If you’re looking for what Jeremy calls “a higher value to social media, where we can make people’s lives better and really rally people to help others”, I’m sure there are people that are using social media for exactly that purpose, like maybe Roxanne Darling, but for the most part… “Ain’t that type of party”.

Online Dating Tactics

Interestingly enough, both Alana Taylor & Amanda Gravel posted about people’s Facebook rap tactics this week… although their topic is really universally applicable in the world of Social Media.


Alana Taylor & Amanda Gravel

Essentially, Amanda’s post was about how people send friends requests with zero context or explanation of who they are or why they want to be “friends” with her. Alana’s post is about a guy friending her and immediately writing stuff to her that she found creepy:

Alana: “WHATT?? Can you come off as any more of a creep???

I have no idea who this guy is, but he is telling me in a Facebook message that his fantasy is to marry a girl he sees in a picture!?!?!”

Continue reading “Online Dating Tactics”

Digital Internet Snobbery

I need to get a new cell phone… Except…. I *DON’T* need to get a new cell phone. πŸ˜€

I just had a conversation with someone where they were saying they couldn’t get in touch with me. I had already informed them that they needed to email me with the specifics of what they wanted if they wanted to show up on the radar AT ALL. There’s a problem here that I find very interesting. πŸ˜€

Just last night, I was hanging out with Jane Quigley and was online via wireless. She saw how many contacts virtually LIVE on my desktop, taking up the full vertical space of the screen. Most of these contacts are live….. or…. Acually, now that I think about it…. If the people at the top of the list aren’t online, they’ve redirected their messages to go to their cell phones. The reason this is important is that the person was complaining that they couldn’t get in touch with me via their cell phone, and they could get in touch with everyone else. πŸ˜€

So anyway, Jane asks me (like everyone asks me) how I do so much stuff every single day. So, right there on the spot, I started four text conversations which included link-passing and browser page opening. I also showed her how I arrange my editing windows in case I want to leave a conversation visible while I work.

So you can imagine how surprising it was to have a conversation where someone says “I can’t get in touch with you”, after I’ve already told them HOW TO GET IN TOUCH WITH ME! πŸ˜€ This is another interesting effect of my digital internet snobbery and elitism which I touched upon in “Are You a Tech Elitist?”.

At that point, IIRC (because I don’t feel like going back and reading to see exactly what I said), my point was that in moving to Facebook, I ditched everyone that didn’t move up from MySpace. I didn’t MEAN to do it, hahahaha but it happened, because Facebook has a better system of communication, notification and contact.

Once I started heavily using Facebook, not only wasn’t there a reason to use MySpace, but I actually found myself looking DOWN on people that had MySpace pages and not Facebook pages. I remember meeting someone last year that told me she was involved in video production. Without thinking, I asked “Are you on Facebook?”… Her demeanor kind of slouched…. And then she goes “I have a MySpace page.” Basically, I felt like she had told me she has a rotary telephone. I got her information anyway, but it was like Dead Man Walking because I knew I wasn’t going to be in contact with her AT ALL. Not because I didn’t want to, but because I don’t have time for fancy MySpace pages to load so I can scroll through a million moving pictures of people to try to find information I’m looking for over some starry, busy background. Also, MySpace just doesn’t enter my mind. So I would have to think “oh… MySpace exists” and then “oh… SHE has a page on MySpace” to remember her at all. Not gonna happen. πŸ˜€

I had a situation just a couple of weeks ago… Maybe time reversed itself. Maybe that’s what’s going on. πŸ˜€ Just a couple of weeks ago, I asked this chick if she was on Facebook, and she starts stammering, trying to recall what she has. So, it clearly wasn’t Facebook, so I tried to help her out. I said “Myspace?”. No. Not that….. So I’m waiting, and eventually, this chick says “oh… HOTMAIL! :D” So I’m looking for the hidden cameras, because I know that in 2008, this chick didn’t just say that Hotmail was the best she could do as far as internet connectivity. Another one bites the dust.

So now that I’ve figured it out that while I wasn’t looking, the Earth turned backwards to 1998 and is hurtling in reverse, I’m no longer surprised by the conversation I had this morning. It was so surprising that I didn’t even have any answers for her. I had already TOLD HER how she could get in touch with me. EMAIL. PERIOD. How is it that she can’t email me from her phone? How is it that she can’t text my online presence from her phone? The answer is…. That her telephone is NOT CONNECTED TO THE INTERNET other than to send text messages back and forth to other people that use the same system. So she was complaining to me that SHE’S NOT TECHNOLOGICALLY ADVANCED ENOUGH to get in touch with me, and this is supposed to be MY fault! πŸ˜€

Her suggestion was for me to have my cell phone around me so people could text me. Like I said earlier, I was so shocked by this unsophisticated, non-technological conversation I was having that I didn’t realize that people text me all the time, right to my computer. So what I’m going to do is tell her to RTFM and figure out how to access an instant messaging service from her cell phone. Problem solved. She’s going to become one of the names that sits on my screen or remain in oblivion.

Of course, by now, you’re wondering how come this person is trying to live from her cell phone to begin with. πŸ˜€ The people that I’m in contact with via phone have that set up as a backup system so that when they’re away from their computer, they can still get messages from people. This means that they HAVE a computer to begin with. This also means they know how to USE their computer. I’ve now recognized a new high (low???) in digital internet snobbery, because as much as I’ve neglected the people who still to this day socialize on MySpace… I’ve completely, and I mean COMPLETELY forgotten about the people that either don’t know how to use or totally DON’T HAVE COMPUTERS!

I know how this happened. Via the internet, you get to meet like-minded people, people you enjoy talking to, people you respect, people you do business with. There is just too much choice right at your fingertips and too many people that ARE connected to even have time to consider the people that aren’t. Something else to think about. An entirely deeper level of ghosts… NOT in the machine.

As far as the “Keep the phone by you” suggestion, forget it. If I’m editing, I have to WATCH the video and I have to LISTEN to the audio and I have to manipulate the controls. For those reasons, I am NOT going to pick up a phone and listen to what you have to say. On top of that, GOOD editing is done by feel. You have to live in the situation to absorb the meaning and you have to feel when the piece moves *YOU* so that the piece will move other people. I am NOT going to break my mood. Therefore, even though I *HAVE* a cell phone, it’s not going to ring. Even if it buzzes, it might not be on my person at all. If you leave me a message, I’m not going to check. If you send me a text on my cell phone, I’m not going to check. The only way that I can be efficient and do what I do and regulate my all-important mood is to communicate with you ASYNCHRONOUSLY.

That means, send me an email. I’ll get to it when I get to it. Send me an IM. I’ll get to it when I get to it. Send me SOMETHING that’s going to sit there until I’m “back in the world” from being inside my edit. When I’m wondering “hmm… Wonder if anyone sent me anything”, that’s your window of opportunity to receive return correspondence or conversation.

Another thing is… Time is Money. If I’m not doing what *I* want to do, that’s because someone paid me to focus on what THEY wanted me to do. So… I really don’t want to hear about “I can’t get in touch with you” when I told you how to do it. I don’t get paid to pick up my cell phone. I don’t get paid to have my cell phone on my person. I don’t get paid to receive telephone calls AT ALL! πŸ˜€

Having said that, I’m going to give this new layer of ghosts some consideration… Rather, I should say, this layer of ghosts that I’m newly aware of. How do I reach back to the people stranded in MySpace? How do I reach back to people that don’t own or know how to use computers?

I really wouldn’t know, because I’m a digital internet snob.

Are You A Tech Elitist?

Are *you* a Tech Elitist? If so, how’s that workin’ for ya?

As it’s now Christmas, and we think of The Grinch sitting high on the hill, looking down on all the little people of the village with contempt… Let’s consider our own positions in our respective fields and how we’ve chosen social media sites & groups as well as whom we’ve chosen to affiliate ourselves with.

There was much change during 2007. More ways to communicate. More social sites to join. More video hosts with their own little gimmicks that made them slightly different from the rest. New video editing software. New storage solutions. New live streaming options….

As new opportunities arose, there was a lot of bandwagon-jumping. Sometimes it stuck, sometimes it didn’t. When Twitter was initially unreliable, OFTEN, eventually, Jaiku came along, and there was a mass exodus. The backup plan for when Twitter would go down was for people to immediately start posting on Jaiku until the problem was resolved. Eventually, Twitter became stable, and I didn’t hear a peep about Jaiku for months until they got bought by Google. All of a sudden, here come the Jaiku friend requests.

Even within Twitter, there was bandwagon-jumping. Apps were created so you didn’t have to use the twitter web page with your browser. Some people stuck with them. Some people bailed back to the web site when they realized how many twitter posts the apps weren’t picking up. Eventually, people found found satisfaction in how they received twitter posts. At some point during ’07, Pownce became a player as well.

There was much debate about which status update application was better between the three of them. I ended up sticking with Twitter, and once every so often, I copy/paste redundant posts to Pownce & Jaiku for people that primarily (if not exclusively) use those sites. I’m also biased towards Twitter because I have 341 contacts there vs. 117 on Pownce and 50 on Jaiku, many of which are redundant for the reason I stated earlier. So, for the sake of this post, I’ll say I made the ‘elitist’ decision that Twitter was better for my purposes and essentially neglect the other two services.

On the social site front, I used to have a regular MySpace presence. I had somewhere around 500 “friends” that were rather randomly acquired. What I mean by that is that I had probably 100 contacts that I knew from some other site or forum or that I actually knew IRL and then another 400 or so people/companies that sent me a friends request and then essentially never talked to me “again”. πŸ˜€ … “Again” has to be in quotes, because they never TALKED to me the first time. All they did was click a button that sent me a friends request, and I accepted it. I enjoyed interacting with my actual friends on MySpace, but the vast majority of it I found to be utterly worthless. MySpace is fantastic if you’re a musician or an artist, but I didn’t make many new relationships on MySpace that were worth anything.

Eventually, Facebook stepped its game up, and I migrated to “the better site”. Similar to my Twitter bias for status updates, my MySpace dealings dwindled to ZERO. In fact, if someone didn’t have a facebook account, I wouldn’t even bother to look them up on MySpace. πŸ™‚ “Everybody who was anybody” was on Facebook, so there wasn’t any need to ‘waste’ time on other mass social sites. Recently, someone mentioned MySpace to me, and I inadvertently laughed and said something like “You *still* use your MySpace account?” She replied that she interacts with the people that she knows because of business on Facebook, but her IRL friends are all still on MySpace. I hadn’t thought about it before, but as I sit here on my Facebook hill with contempt… I’m now wondering how many of my ACTUAL friends are still down in the MySpace village, having never made the jump to “the better site”.

The reason Facebook is better for me is that I deal with social media every day of the week. Now that I’m thinking about it, for the average joe, MySpace is more than enough, and there’s no reason for them to look for better connectivity to more REAL people. So now I have to consider whether it’s more beneficial to me to move some of my Facebook-time back to MySpace instead of concentrating solely on the site that’s clearly superior for my purposes.

Next, you have video hosts. I use blip.tv because the options and functionalities serve my purposes as I maintain my own video blogs using WordPress, Show-In-A-Box and vPiP. Meanwhile, other people talk into their webcams and post videos to YouTube. I’ve posted a few videos to YouTube for test purposes, but I wasn’t impressed with the video compression quality at the time, I wasn’t impressed with the Terms of Service and I *CERTAINLY* wasn’t impressed with the dimwitted remarks people love to leave in the comments sections.

For those reasons and others, I’ve left YouTube just about completely alone… However, you can’t argue with the numbers of views that people get, assuming they get “featured”. YouTube has become the go-to for people looking for any kind of video under the sun, so just by having your video there, you have more of a chance of it going viral than if you oh-so-elitely plan, film, edit, compress, upload, post, tag and advertise your own videos like I do. πŸ™‚

The question, again, is “How’s that workin’ for ya?”. Fortunately, another 2007 development is TubeMogul which enables you to upload a video once and have it distributed to multiple video sharing sites. TubeMogul also tracks statistics for you across several sites. So now, there’s less incentive to keep “all your eggs in one basket”.

I’m sure we can look forward to lots more fantastic developments in 2008. πŸ™‚ Personally, I’ll be paying more attention than I was this year as far as whether I’d like to consolidate or expand in the areas of status updates, social sites and video hosting sites. I didn’t even get to talk about live streaming options, like how I think Operator11 is infinitely better than BlogTV….. except Operator11 went completely offline for more than a week, so people like Jonny Goldstein had to retreat to other live streaming sites to keep their shows going. Of course, there’s no way to add a BlogTV archive to your Operator11 show archive, so c’est la vie. :/

Anyway… I think it’s in all of our best interests to pay attention not only to which new app or site has cool features or the elite people flocking to it, but also to whether we’re trading away communications with our core viewers, friends, contacts and followers. Just like The Grinch found out… it’s lonely at the top.

Bill Cammack Ò€’ Cammack Media Group, LLC