As you know, dear readers, I recently completed a self-imposed social media sabbatical. I only lasted about 10 days of
no little social media usage. Staying off Twitter and Facebook were the biggest victories. Apparently, I’m not alone in the desire to disconnect. As much as I and others love social media, unplugging and doing without for a while is not only a healthy practice, I would argue a necessary one. I don’t want to wax philosophical about how absence makes the heart grow fonder, that you don’t know what you’ve got til it’s gone or any other cliched pop culture reference. I’ve already written about what a short sabbatical did for me and the lessons learned.
This post is about how social media sabbaticals and disconnecting from a hyperconnected world are suddenly becoming all the rage. This week alone, I’ve seen several posts about this very subject (yes, I learned about these articles through social media). Not everyone has to go to the South China Sea, where there is no wifi, no cellphone signal and “most alarmingly, there would be no Twitter,” to escape the daily social grind as travel writer Jillian Keenan did.
“I Google, Facebook, email and tweet in the same insatiable way that I drink water and breathe air,” the 26-year-old writes in the Post piece. Keenan concluded that she “needed a technological detox,” which came in the form of a rugged, but beautiful island and sea adventure.
But we don’t all have to GO away in order to GET away from the deluge of messages we’re bombarded with in our everyday daily lives.
Younger Millennials are starting to figure this out, according to a new study by MTV. Younger Millennials are starting to unplug and mono-task to de-stress. According to the MTV study, younger Millennials “are also consciously taking time to self-soothe, disconnect, de-stress, de-stimulate and control inputs. They increasingly “mono-task” and focus on immersive hands-on activities like baking, sewing or crafting. Some claim their dependence on social media is overrated: one girl says ‘My parents Facebook more than I do.'”
The report found that 8 in 10 young Millennials agree that “Sometimes I just need to unplug and enjoy the simple things” and that 82% of young Millennials agree “when I’m stressed or overwhelmed, I like to stop and just do one thing at a time,” with more than half (57%) of young Millennials like to take a break from technology to make things with their hands.
Of course you don’t have to be a “tech homesteader” or young Millennial to disconnect and disengage from the social world. While my social media sabbatical was a mere week and a half, author Neil Gaiman announced a planned 6-month social media sabbatical.
“Gaiman announced that he would take a break from updating his 1.8m followers on Twitter, his 500,000 Facebook friends and maybe even posting for the 1.5m readers of his blog,” The Guardian reported.
Of course, when you are actively engaged, telling others that you’re deliberating trying to go without seems strange. The peers in your social network may react with disbelief. And saying you’re going offline and actually doing it are two different things.
Baratunde Thurston offers advice on how to successfully #unplug. After a year filled with 1,518 Facebook posts (4 per day), 3,702 SMS threads (10 per day), 4,845 Photos taken (13 per day), 11,541 Tweets (32 per day), and 59,409 Gmail conversations (163 per day), Thurston decided a digital detox was in store.
“I didn’t want to be alone,” Thurston writes. “I just wanted to be free of obligations, most of which asserted themselves digitally.”
So for 25 days, Thurston disappeared from the digital world. His excellent Fast Company post offers a 9-point digital detox list offering “how to disappear.” I highly recommend checking it out.
While there are definite advantages to taking a sabbatical, going to an island in the South Seas, or temporarily detoxing digital from your life, there’s also a price to pay. For me, my Klout score dropped about 15 points because I wasn’t constantly tweeting, Facebooking (is that even a verb?), checking-in, or linking in. I don’t regret it one bit. You won’t either.
When it comes to Social Media, not only should you love it, but leave it. Just make sure you #return.
Posts Tagged ‘Social Media’
As you know, dear readers, I recently completed a self-imposed social media sabbatical. I only lasted about 10 days of
Tags:advice, Baratunde Thurston, Digital Detox, Facebook, Fast Company, Guardian, Jillian Keenan, Millennials, MTV study, Neil Gaiman, New Millennials Will Keep Calm and Carry On, Social Media, Social Media Sabbatical, Twitter, Washington Post, younger Millennials
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Confession: I love social media. I use social media (I tweet a lot). I teach social media. I study social media. I consult about social media. I strategize social media. I am working on innovating social media. Despite all of this (or perhaps because of), I decided to walk away from social media. For a week. A WHOLE week. As a mini-social experiment of sorts, I decided to go on a self-imposed Social Media Sabbatical. My planned weeklong sabbatical actually turned into a 10-day one. From May 24th to June 3rd, I used very little social media. I decided to share the takeaways of what I learned about my social media usage (and non-usage). Here they are:
*Habitual: My social media usage is habitual. Every morning, I check Twitter primarily as a news feed to read articles from numerous outlets. My morning Twitter read is usually followed by email and Facebook checks. Just as my parents are accustomed to watching the evening news at a set time and channel (“appointment viewing”), my habit has become a routine of “social media-as-news-first thing in the morning.”
*Instinctive: The opposite of habit, but my social media usage is just as instinctive as it is habitual. While I have a ritual of checking social media at a certain time, I also noticed that during “down moments,” my instinct was to grab my iPhone or tablet and check Twitter or Facebook, almost without even thinking about it.
With social media there’s always the “FOMO,” or Fear Of Missing Out. Naturally, a social media sabbatical brings the fear of missing out. Facebook has the most daily engagement and it plays up the FOMO angle. Since I had the audacity to not log onto Facebook for days, and thus not be engaged with the platform, Facebook sent me emails telling me what all I was missing. So and so commented about such and such. This person posted pics on Topic Y. I also found that FOMO works two ways. When engaged with social media, there’s also the FOMO of what’s happening right in front of you, or missing out in IRL. Comedian Louis C.K. has a funny bit about this.
*Addicting: Yes, Social Media is indeed addicting. Much like an addict slowly weans himself off of a drug, quitting cold turkey was difficult. I did not succeed. I was able to avoid logging onto Facebook and Twitter for 10 days. But I confess I still had an occasional Foursquare check-in, and looked at LinkedIn from time to time. And like most addictions, you replace one addiction with another. I turned to eating Bojangles. Lots and lots of Bojangles.
*Prevalent: Social media is everywhere. While you can avoid logging onto and actively participating in social media you can’t avoid its reach. During my sabbatical, others were using social media and sharing it with me in the real world. My aunt showed me the Facebook page created for her insurance agency. Others pulled up pictures to show me. Of course, television shows promoted hashtags and tempted me. I filled my social media void by turning to old-fashioned books, about among other topics, you guessed it- social media. Yes, I spent a weekend at the beach disconnecting from social media while reading Shel Israel’s Twitterville.
*Useful and entertaining: The bottom line is that social media is useful and entertaining. That’s why it can be addicting. That’s why
we I use it. It’s far easier to come across news from at least a dozen outlets in one place (Twitter) than to individually seek out the websites of The New York Times, News & Observer, Hartford Courant, Wall Street Journal, The Atlantic, The Guardian and so on and so forth. I found the process of actively seeking out news articles far more laborious. I also missed using social media for recommendations on places to eat (Yelp, Urbanspoon), and what to eat (Foursquare, Yelp). I missed using social media for sports updates (how were my Braves doing). And I missed the entertaining “second screen” experience of Twitter during television. When UNC’s baseball team was competing in an epic 18-inning ACC tourney game with rival N.C. State, I found myself wondering what Inside Carolina reporter Dijana Kunovac was tweeting about.
*Connective: Social media is social afterall. It connects us, and (for better or worse) keeps us informed with what is going on in each other’s lives. I definitely felt less connected and less informed to friends and colleagues in my social networks during my sabbatical.
I asked Mr. T.J. Adeshola, an account manager with Twitter, to speak with my Social Media class and he graciously agreed (T.J. and I were classmates together in graduate school at the University of Georgia- we even co-authored a paper about blogging).
I wanted to share some of his (wait for bad Twitter pun) “TWinsights” with you.
Adeshola, whose clients include ESPN (his former employer), Anheuser-Busch (parent company of Bud Light), and Forman-Brown (makers of Jack Daniels), among others, said that many of the brands he works with understand the importance of being in the social space but often want advice on how to execute best practices and content strategies.
Adeshola works with advertisers to amplify their messages on the platform using Twitter promoted products in the forms of promoted tweets, promoted accounts and promoted trends. While Twitter users want to know how to get verified and how to get more followers, brands are the same way, Adeshola said. They often utilize Twitter to broaden their follower base so that they can create a contingent brand advocates on the platform.
He said that the hashtag is “an aggregation of conversation” and as such no one can really “own” a hashtag per se.
There’s no specific number of tweets it takes in order to trend. “If there’s a huge event (i.e. Grammy’s) that day, it becomes more difficult for topics unrelated to that event to trend nationally. For example, there were over 24 million tweets during the Superbowl! As you can imagine, that much volume can make it difficult for a non-Super Bowl related hashtag to trend organically,” Adeshola said.
Adeshola said that companies try to incorporate social strategy as part of an overall integrated strategy (“to sprinkle some social juice on it,” as he puts it). Social shouldn’t be viewed as a singular approach, however, Adeshola cautioned.
“The idea is not to look at all social channels as one big platform,” he said. “You guys go to Facebook for different reasons than you go to Twitter, or for different reasons than you go to Pinterest or for different reasons than you go to Instagram and that’s something everybody needs to keep in mind at all times. When you’re looking at types of engagement that occur on Twitter, they’re different than the types of engagement that occur on Facebook.”
Aware of the prevalence and influence of TV and how many shows are already using Twitter hashtags to promote their shows, Adeshola said that Twitter provides the perfect “second screen” experience for viewers.
“We believe that we are the ideal second screen experience so with that we are the perfect extension of television, so if BudLight Platinum has a commercial and they say Make It Platinum, which is a hashtag they utilize, Twitter is the destination for conversation around the advertisement, so our goal is to step in as a companion and help amplify these initiatives,” Adeshola said.
The Bird is ever mindful to not just be a “one trick pony” so the popular Social Networking Site is looking to evolve the platform and services with television a natural place for future synergies, Adeshola said.
“Shows want an extension of their show to live elsewhere,” he said. “They want companion interaction, they want companion engagement. The great thing about that is that Pretty Little Liars might end, but the hashtag that’s used within the show organizes all of the related conversations on Twitter, so it’s really the perfect play for advertisers, marketers and content providers alike.”
** Update: On May 23, Twitter announced TV ad targeting similar to what Adeshola was describing, as illustrated in the video below**
Note: I’m cross-posting this on geoffreygraybeal.com AND my Social Media Class’ Digital & Social Media Literacy blog.
Tags:ad targeting, Adeshola, ads, advertisement, analytics, BudLightPlatinum, commercials, engagement, hashtag, measurement, research, Second Screen, Social Media, social TV, Strategy, television, TJ, TV, Twitter
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SLOMO: There are different cute acronmyns like “SLOMO” to describe the current era of (news?) media as one that should focus on Social, Local and Mobile. This focus bore out during the train crash. I first learned of news of the Connecticut train collision on Friday afternoon through a push notification to my iPhone through my Associated Press (AP) Mobile APP. One of the ways journalists use social media is to find local sources for a given topic. Over the weekend, I saw numerous tweets from my local newspaper, the Hartford Courant, looking for Connecticut residents who regularly commute to New York for work willing to speak with a reporter for a story he was working on. I first learned about cancellations in train service from New York to New Haven (and all the way to Boston) through Metro North’s Twitter account (it was a retweet of an Amtrak announcement). Social? Check. Local? Check. Mobile? Check.
User-Generated Content: A group of teenagers were skateboarding at the nearby Rampage skateboard park when the two trains collided. They skated to the scene of the wreck and recorded the powerful footage of the crash you see below (warning: foul language). Many news outlets reported and linked to this footage, as is common to supplement traditional reporting with so-called user-generated content (UGC), particularly for breaking news stories.
Language and Word Choice Matters: My first 48 hours in New York were wonderful. I went to an excellent panel discussion on excellence in television at the Paley Center, reconnected with former students and colleagues from the University of Georgia, had drinks with my favorite Bloomberg reporter and explored new areas of the city in three Boroughs (walked the High Line in Manhattan, visited the Museum of Moving Images in Queens and took in the sunset at DUMBO in Brooklyn). The rest of the weekend went poorly. My friend’s flight got delayed so I went to the Yankees game solo. The Friday derailment left me semi-stranded and scrambling to find a way home. This meant I had to miss graduation at the University of Hartford on Sunday so I was deprived seeing my students’ crowning achievement and celebrating a wonderful year with colleagues. And it rained all day Sunday. When people asked how my weekend went, I found myself starting to respond with a phrase like “oh, it was a train wreck.” Or “it was a disaster.” But in light of an actual disaster of a train wreck, such common hyperbole that we use in our everyday language seems silly and ridiculous. The reality is I just had a bad day. Plain and simple.
Roll with the Punches: Even the best laid plans can go to waste. I took an Amtrak train from Hartford to New Haven and then hopped onto Metro North. After the train wreck (the real one), I was no longer able to get back to New Haven on Sunday to catch my return trip on Amtrak back to Hartford. No graduation for me. I was one of the hundreds? thousands? of folks in New York whose means out of the city were disrupted. I had to scramble to get a late bus back to Hartford. My Georgia colleague’s flight to New York got delayed so he had to miss the Yankees game. As work was being done on the Subway stop where I was staying, I had to figure out how to navigate the New York subway system. I didn’t see everyone I wanted to. I didn’t do everything I wanted to do. But in the end that’s life. Life is full of tiny derailments. We laugh about it. Smile about it. Find a new way home. And move on.
After presenting at the International Symposium on Online Journalism last week, I wanted to share some takeaways/tips on how academics can make a more engaging presentation (particularly on a grand stage like ISOJ). I could easily title this blog post “Presentation Tips (Do What I Say, Not What I Did).”
ISOJ brings together some of the world’s leading journalists, news execs, journalism scholars and students. For the most part, the non-academics delivered far more engaging, dynamic memorable presentations than the academics (myself included). Academics are accustomed to presenting research to a small group of peers deeply entrenched in a core subject area. ISOJ is a whole different ballgame. The crowd is large (350+ in attendance, plus thousands more watching on two livestreams- one in English, one in Spanish). The audience is diverse (people from 30 different countries were present and a mix of different professions as previously noted). The coverage is intense (expect to be tweeted, recorded, blogged about and so forth).
Academics who get the privilege of presenting on this grand stage (acceptance rates are low so it truly is an honor to be selected) should heed the following advice, IMHO:
1)Forget the standard academic format. Yes, you’ll want to talk about the background, your research questions and what your findings are, but doing so shouldn’t follow the standard cookie cutter approach that non-academics either don’t understand or eyes glaze over at the verbose language.
2)Own the Stage: If you’re like me, you’re used to hiding behind the podium. The podium is a place to see the complex underpinnings of the research you’re describing, or place notes/talking points. Most of the non-academics owned the stage. They stood out front and center with the big screen behind them, much like you often find at a TED talk.
3)Be Tweetable. Have at least one “killer quote” that’s short, memorable and likely to be tweeted- and shared (getting your message to a wider audience).
David Ho of The Wall Street Journal had at least two such moments:
“The first step in thinking mobile first is don’t think mobile last,” he said.
“The mouse is dead,” he also declared
Longtime Guardian staffer Emily Bell made a great NBA analogy for journalism, declaring “The power has gone from the league to the franchise to the individual.”
Deseret Media CEO Clark Gilbert had a great line about disruption rendering really smart people completely incapable.
4)Think Visually. Graphics and visual imaging tell a story and are more compelling and engaging than text-heavy slides (we all know not to use a bunch of texts but the standard academic study privileges findings).
5)Know Your Audience: A typical academic conference is to a small group of scholarly peers that know the subject you’re talking about. At ISOJ you have a mix of students, scholars, journalists and managers from industry and the academy. Keep your language simple and stay on message. Tell a cohesive story in whatever short amount of time you have to do so.
6)Show Passion and Personality: Yes, we’re discussing serious matters, but that doesn’t mean we can’t also have fun in doing so. The Washington Post’s Joey Marburger explained how the Tardis time machine from the long-running television series Doctor Who is an example of how mobile devices connect people to the rest. Even Jill Abramson, the executive editor of The New York Times, responded to a question by saying “Whoomp There It Is” (which naturally prompted a tweet with a link to the Tag Team video). Don’t be afraid to use humor in your talk or to show a lighter, more personable side.
In looking back at the video of my presentation, I #fail(ed) to do most of these. After two presentations at ISOJ, I’m confident that the third time will be the charm. I look forward to the next time I get the opportunity to take the stage in Austin and some stellar presentations from ISOJ2014.
There’s a lot that could be said and a ton that has been already been written about the departures of student editors from UGA’s independent student newspaper, The Red & Black. I’ll keep my opinions to myself on many of the crazy twists and turns in this two day saga that has unfolded.
What I will say and do want to chime in on is The Red and Dead. One year ago, The Red & Black went to a “digital first” publishing format, significantly scaling back its print coverage in the process and focusing on creating a “24/7” news operation in line with what many professional newspapers have done. (In the interest of disclosure, I taught many of the student editors and reporters who led the digital first charge in the past year although I certainly cannot take any credit for their stellar efforts in doing so).
Given the R&B students’ deep dive into the digital “revolution” a year ago, it is not surprising that the former staffers (and presumably soon to be current again R&B staffers) went about creating an alternative digital news operation within minutes after walking out the door of the paper’s Baxter Street office.
I was mostly impressed by the “digital first” reporting and the use of social media in disseminating the story of their stand for journalism ethics that the staff of the Red and Dead displayed. Within two days, the Red & Black ex-pats created an online operation that could have proven a formidable student-run rival for their former employer. Most importantly, they went about reporting news and covering the university community.
As of this afternoon, the RedandDead Twitter account had 3,776 followers and had put out 284 tweets and the group had a Facebook page with 3,298 “likes.” The Red & Black Twitter page has close to 15,000 followers but has been in operation for a few years. To develop a sizable following and create a digital news outlet run from an apartment within two days is laudable.
The use of social media to disseminate news of the situation at the Red&Black was also another admirable takeaway from this otherwise ugly incident. Social media helped give the story “legs” as some famous nationally known journalists such as ESPN’s Rick Reilly and Sports Illustrated’s Peter King even tweeted about it. National publications wrote about the story, including The New York Times and The Huffington Post, as did national groups like the Student Press Law Center and Associated Collegiate Press.
There’s a lot more that can be gleaned from this episode and I’ll leave that to future research, ponderings, blog posts and class discussions. I’m certainly glad there appears to be an amicable resolution.
Kudos to the student journalists for applying their digital first reporting and social media skills so successfully.
For the next two weeks, I’m teaching a college-level “Digital & Social Media Literacy” course to high school juniors and seniors through the University’s Pre-College Summer Program. I decided to create a public blog for the course that can serve as a resource and area of discussion for others interested in the areas of digital media literacy, social media literacy or just digital & social media in general. I’ll continue to add content to the site throughout the year, after the summer course ends. I’m teaching a special topics course on Social Media at the University of Hartford next spring and the blog will be a resource and starting point for students enrolled in that course as well. I’d encourage you to check out the blog and join the conversation.
For the course, I decided to focus the first week on “thinking” about digital & social media, exploring themes, concepts and ideas of digital & social media literacy, disruption and displacement, impact on traditional media, social networks, social media, youth culture, and participatory culture. I gleaned ideas for readings and assignments from the work of communication scholars Howard Rheingold, Serena Carpenter, and Greg Downey and past syllabi of “social media” courses taught by Barry Hollander and Karen Russell here at UGA.
The second week of my course will focus more on “doing,” the creation and consumption of content through forms and platforms of digital and social media. I’ve been teaching some form of these “week two” assignments, through my “Media & Message: Communicating in the Digital Age” Duke TIP @ UGA summer course, or through my News Editing course, the past three years. I would be remiss if I did not mention the work of Mark Johnson in advancing the teaching of digital literacies here in the Grady College the past few years.
Developing Digital & Social Media literacies are important and I’m honored to have the opportunity to join others in advancing the cause through teaching and scholarship.
Tags:Barry Hollander, digital literacies, digital media, digital media literacy, greg downey, howard rheingold, karen russell, Mark Johnson, media literacy, pedagogy, serena carpenter, Social Media, social media literacy, Teaching, Teaching Social Media
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I was recently interviewed for an article about social branding on a blog site focused on public relations. I thought I would share my full answers with my blog followers as well. Enjoy!
Q: Does social branding have an age? For example, is it ever too late or too early to start?
A: Setting aside the issue of when is an appropriate age to begin using various forms of social media (which parents should set for their
children), I do not believe it is ever too early or too late to start social branding. In fact, as soon as you begin using social media you
should be conscientious of how your actions on those sites and others you communicate with contribute to your overall digital identity.
The next step, of course, is to actively manage your social identity and to begin to shape your social brand. I would argue that to some
extent children become familiar with social branding of their virtual selves as soon as they begin using social games. For example, young
children on Club Penguin develop a branded penguin persona, children of all ages on Nintendo Wii and other games develop virtual avatars,
and so forth and so on. This study suggests that children as young as 11 start building their personal brand on social sites.
Whatever age you are, if you are actively using social media sites then you should start developing your social brand. Of course,
developing a specific niche or areas of interest, even at a young age, work best to develop your brand. I taught students as young as 12 in
my Duke TIP summer studies’ digital media course how to identify an area they’re passionate about and begin to build a social brand around
that topic, through blogging and use of social networking sites. One teenage student created an online publication to cover teenage issues
in her hometown of Staunton, West Virginia. Two other students with an interest in sports began to build up their brand presence as
experts in sports. Regardless of age, building a social brand can help establish your expertise in certain subject matters.
Q: With evolving technology and social media, do you think we will ever brand ourselves correctly?
A: Just as technologies evolve, our personal brands may change as we change and evolve. When I was in high school, I was a sportswriter
for a local weekly newspaper. I also worked part time at an Italian ice store. One basketball coach called me “scoop” because of my print
sports reporting (but the nickname also worked because I scooped Italian ice). My personal brand revolved around sportswriting and
print news reporting. I was known in my networks as a sports writer and a journalist.
When I was in college, I was a youth page editor for the daily newspaper’s teen section. My brand revolved around youth media and
features writing. After I graduated college, I covered Orange and Chatham counties in North Carolina so I was branded as a local
During my graduate studies and time at Georgia, my brand has evolved to that of expert in social & digital media strategy, media
sustainability and journalism innovation.
For individuals, sometimes less is more. Just because a new social media tool or platform develops doesn’t mean you have to use it. In
some instances, it may not make sense to do so. The biggest thing we advise corporate clients is to have an overall social media strategy
that ties to your brand strategy and overall objectives. The same applies to individuals. The biggest challenge is to either integrate
the different social media presences to a unified brand presence and/or to use the different social media outlets accordingly. For example, I’ve chosen to use my Twitter presence for a mix of professional and personal purposes, often tweeting about journalism topics, social media and social media marketing, communicating with friends and students and opining on topics I’m passionate about such as Carolina basketball and food. Facebook, meanwhile, for me is mostly for personal use.
Q: Any other thoughts about how social media is affecting branding with younger audiences.
A: Social media knows no boundaries or age limits for the potential to breakout among the masses. Young people have become overnight
sensations (ala Rebecca Black for “Friday”) or bona fide celebrities (Justin Bieber), with the discovery fueled through the use of social media. The good news for young people is that they can get a message out, brand themselves as experts in a particular topic they’re passionate about or convey their talents to the masses. And they can do that now, at 12, or 13, or 14. Or whatever age. They don’t have to wait to develop a social brand for themselves. The downside, and the danger, is that one mistake or social media misstep can irreparably harm their social brand. Think of the “Star Wars” kid that became a viral video sensation. The “leave Britney alone” YouTube guy. The teenage girl whose father put 9 bullets in her computer for a Facebook post complaining about his parenting.
For younger audiences who are digital natives (born 1985 or later), I would argue that they have grown up with and are familiar with social media platforms on a personal level. That is to say they know how to use social media to communicate with friends and for fun in their personal lives. But most young people I’ve encountered have not thought about the larger issues associated with social and digital media. They are not fully social media or digital media literate in the sense of an awareness of the processes and effects of those technologies-the business purposes of social media, how politicians, governments, celebrities, even law enforcement are using social media platforms and the larger issues social media raise in a socially connected society.
As one of the leading social media evangelists, Gary Vaynerchuk is outspoken, loud, vibrant, passionate, emphatic and yeah, he likes to cuss a lot. In short, he’s the polar opposite of a scholar. As demonstrative as Vaynerchuk is, he usually has some substance underlying his style. In fact, I find that I agree with @garyvee more than I disagree with him. In the video below, Gary is spot on in describing the importance of c-o-n-t-e-x-t in the new social media ecosystem.
This is precisely what Jameson Hayes and I had in mind 2 years ago when we began drafting our “Modified Media Micropayment Model” (we wrote “the social aspect of payment for web content is also vital. In many ways, web users are already dependent upon this socialization aspect as a referent of content we’re willing to click through. As media products are experience goods, opinions of others are often tapped to alleviate uncertainty prior to consumption. … the modified micropayment system harnesses trusted sources from social networking sites to help consumers determine whether a media good is worth purchasing. This converts online social networks into value creating distribution networks beneficial to all parties.” p. 34 – “Synergizing Traditional Media and The Social Web for Monetization: A Modified Media Micropayment Model, Journal of Media Business Studies, 8(2),)
Gary says this more emphatically than I ever could. Check out this excellent video below:
Below are the slides from my guest lecture on “Social media, (search) and PR.” Enjoy!