Twitter Knows Me Well, Suggests ‘Who to Follow’

twitter suggested followers who to follow personalizedIt’s mid-2010 and the social web is finally getting comfortable with the opening and exploitation of the “social graph.” It likely helped that Facebook took a bit of backlash over the past few months to pave the way for the rest. And now, like any good social network should, Twitter is beginning to show the cards that we (the users) dealt it.

Twitter’s “Who to Follow” personalized suggestions can now be seen in the right-hand sidebar of the Twitter.com user web app and under this tab. This is familiar territory to anyone who uses Facebook or even Amazon. Twitter knows who you follow and who follows you back as well as who many in your circle follow that you do not yet follow. Hence the social graph. It’s a wild and crazy algorithm, but if you think about it in physical terms, we all have friends that we want to introduce specifically to other friends. And it should be assumed that by using Twitter, you hope to communicate with and discover new peers, business partners, etc.

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Facebook Questions: A Walled Garden of Echo Chambers

It feels like April Fools in July with the launch of Facebook’s inevitably anticipated Q&A service.

introducing facebook questions

facebook questions notifications galoreAges after every other internet portal and social network went ahead and entrapped the unfocused masses in endless loops of Q and A clickery, your Facebook news feed is probably popping with sophomoric questions right about now.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s fun — as in funny. I can’t take it seriously. And I’m going to have to make sure this April Fools joke comes to an abrupt end (as soon as somebody tells me how to opt out). Did I think twice before trying out questions? Well, I took a second to take the above screenshot, but then I dived right in. I wanna play! This is the most fun and interactive FB App since Mafia Wars! Look at all those notifications — mostly from people I don’t even know… yet!

But I really felt like I was doing this while trying not to fall asleep in 4th grade Language Arts class or something. ESPECIALLY when Facebook told me that I had to capitalize the first word [sic] of each sentence.

facebook questions tech blog walled garden
My answer was so dumb it was removed or voted off. So I had to answer another one!

Nice to see Facebook finally reaching out to its under-served high school (and younger) community and to provide some educational value while at it!

So now that I wrote this tongue-in-cheek blog post about Facebook’s latest feature, can I quit it?

Not before I ask.

facebook questions nmeta

Check out real Facebook + Media coverage of Q&A here, here, here, and here. I’ll come back to FB Questions if the API proves to really open up the platform and say, enable embedding of questions and polls on this here blog.

Facebook Apps on Profile and Red Ink

facebook ilike red tape inkApps like Cow Clicker would seem to be proof enough that the Facebook application marketplace is ridiculously oversaturated, but no — even Facebook itself can’t seem to keep up with the glut of apps old and new.

Every few weeks I come across a Facebook App on my profile, a page, or elsewhere, that is littered with red ink. The most popular splotch tends to be the warning that the iLike player (also known as the Facebook music player in spite of being acquired by MySpace last year) will soon disappear from your profile page. It’s said that for almost a year and… nothing.

A few months ago Facebook teased new Eventbrite integration — actually incorporating the Eventbrite payment system into the process of setting up a FB event, only to quietly pull the feature (which was functional at best) almost immediately. And the months go by…

causes app to leave profile box in august facebookNow it’s Causes, a platform that has grown with Facebook from the start. (Causes co-founder and former Facebook president Sean Parker apparently plays a prominent role in the forthcoming Facebook movie – Justin Timberlake plays the part.)

Whether or not the profile box really disappears in a couple weeks likely won’t upset anyone too much, however, the ugliness of the red tape over the badge (and the persistence of the iLike warning) ain’t pretty. And what’s with covering the actual cause campaign with a “Keep Causes on Your Profile” badge? It only instructs the user to add a tab. Essentially this means that eventually…. we might be looking at forced scarcity of apps that we can include on the main page of our profile. We’ll just have to wait and find out.

Have you seen other apps out there with similar “red tape” or red ink that never seem to go away?

What am I Doing Now?

san francisco summer
Photo by vgm8383 licensed under Creative Commons
“Living is being happy: seeing, hearing, touching, drinking, eating, urinating, defecating, diving into the water and gazing at the sky, laughing and crying.” – Milan Kundera, The Book of Laughter and Forgetting

It’s been two weeks since I last walked out of the Live Earth offices and the “so what’re ya gonna do nows?” just aren’t getting old yet.

The idea of perfection or an ideal future/job/family is loaded with false hope and bound to disappoint, not unlike San Francisco in the summertime.

Is that a depressing thing to say? (Remember, I got my Master’s in skepticism at USC). Au contrair. I’ll never know exactly what I want for the foreseeable future. Or at least I’d never admit to it. I like to allow for a little free flow, leave room for spontaneity, live day-to-day to the max and give a bit up to chance. (Was also an English major). It only gets better.

Call me a pretentious music snob (and you’d be right) but I’m too existentialist to even list Top 5’s because, well, at any given time or place that list would be different.

OK, here’s the latest:

  • Gulf Coast Benefit – on August 25th near you. I’m helping to organize west coast and promote.
  • Social Media Week LA – September 20-24th across LA (and 5 other cities in the world). On the advisory board to make sure this is amazing.social media week la
  • Two other opportunities that I will refrain from mentioning until I take the first steps toward beautifying their respective web presences, etc. (sorry no jinxies).

Am I getting paid? Not enough. Still looking? Yes. Happy? Hell yes. Staying in LA? I’ll go anywhere in the world for the right gig.

Hoping to set aside time to pimp out the resume and LinkedIn profile in the next day or two.

While the possibilities are endless as ever, a hunger for new challenges is met with a thirst for adventure. All good things.

I do appreciate everybody’s positivity, support, forwarding of job openings, and connecting of me to funded friends with promising start-ups.

Hit me up for lunch or to talk biz!

10 Ways Geolocation is Changing the World

This post was written by Rob Reed. He is the founder of MomentFeed, a location-based marketing, strategy, and technology firm.

Location technologies are transforming how we experience, navigate, and ultimately better our world. From the global to the local, here are #10Ways geolocation is a positive force for good.

Social media has changed the world. It has revolutionized communications on a global scale, and the transformation continues with every status update, blog post, and video stream. The global citizenry has become a global network.

Since becoming widely adopted just a couple years ago, social media has supercharged social action, cause marketing, and social entrepreneurship. Indeed, the true value hasn’t been the technology itself but how we’ve used it. Today, a second wave of innovation is defining a new era and setting the stage for change over the coming decade.

Mobile technologies will extend the global online network to anyone with a mobile device while enabling countless local networks to form in the real world. We’ve decentralized media production and distribution. We’re doing the same for energy. And we’ll continue this trend for social networking, social action, and commerce.

The combined forces of smartphones, mobile broadband, and location-aware applications will connect us in more meaningful ways to the people, organizations, events, information, and companies that matter most to us—namely, those within a physical proximity of where we live and where we are. Can location-based services (LBS) change the world? Here are #10Ways:

1. Checking in for Good: If Gowalla and Foursquare have taught us anything, it’s that people respond to simple incentives. By offering badges, mayorships, and other intangible rewards, millions of people are checking in to the places they go. Apps like Whrrl take this a step further and enable like-minded “societies” to form on a local basis. The next step is for these apps to add greater purpose by encouraging more meaningful checkins and offering corresponding badges and stamps, thus mapping the cause universe. Or for a dedicated app to be developed that rewards conscious consumption, social responsibility, and civic engagement. Yes, the CauseWorld app features a cause element, but it’s not about cause-worthy places.

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