Here’s a quick Twitter tip for you: Give context in your @replies and DMs.
“Yeah, that’s so true,” means nothing to me. I have no idea what you’re responding to. You could be reacting to any of the 8.4 tweets I post in an average day. Or you could be responding to something I said three days ago. How am I supposed to know?
It’s especially awkward when someone challenges or insults me. Sorry man, but I don’t know what you’re getting offended about unless you give me a little context. And I can’t give you a source on “that” unless you tell me what “that” is.
This lack of context for conversations is probably one of the biggest downsides to Twitter’s setup (which is saying a lot—this is a minor complaint) and it’s a definite area where Facebook is far superior.
(This is a fine example of when a 140-character limit would have produced a better result.)
Update: A few folks have pointed out that the thread of an @reply conversation is something Twitter is set up to follow. It’s just not immediately obvious. On the Twitter site, the tiny, grayed out text below an @reply will include a link back to the relevant tweet, assuming someone clicked on the ‘reply’ button in the first place. Most Twitter apps pick up on this and deploy the feature in some manner (though again, it’s not always obvious).
Good info to know, making me look kind of dumb.
Of course it still helps to give context in your response. Without context you have to assume someone knows about these features and assume that they used the ‘reply’ button. Sometimes just appending your “LOL” with a “Funky Chicken:” makes all the difference.
So Joss Whedon’s Dollhouse is canceled. At least Fox will let the season end, airing the remaining episodes and giving the show a proper, if early, finale. Another sci-fi show wasn’t so lucky. ABC canceled Defying Gravity just as it was getting good, though the remaining episodes in the season were allowed to air in Canada. U.S. fans will have to either find the pirated versions online or wait for a DVD release to see how season one played out. Thankfully Defying Gravity creator James Parriott shared online how the show would have progressed beyond that first season.
Those are just two quick examples of current network cancellations, though the airwaves are littered with shows cut down before they could tell their stories.
In this DVR, DVD, on-demand age I wonder if networks are only hurting themselves. Many viewers are getting to a point where they won’t commit to these long story-arc shows until they know it’s going to last. Why get wrapped up in a story line if it could potentially be canceled? Some people are opting to wait for a show to run its course before checking it out on DVD. It would help if networks could pick a show and stick with it. But maybe fans need to start demanding it. Maybe we should refuse to watch a show unless it has a two-season commitment. It’s not how Hollywood works, but maybe show creators should refuse to do a show unless they can get a multi-season commitment.
It’s unheard of, but it sure beats unrealized story arcs and half-revealed plots.
The front covers the basic Monkey Outta Nowhere info and the red monkey will actually be applied by hand with a rubber stamp. The back will cover three major side projects I’m involved with, the church communications blog Church Marketing Sucks, the public art site Start Seeing Art and this here personal blog.
After the UnSummit I complained about the difficulty of handing out separate cards for my various endeavors. Somebody suggested I go with a combined card and my designer friend Michael Buckingham of Holy Cow Creative came up with the idea of putting the side projects on the back of my Monkey Outta Nowhere card. It’s an ideal solution since Monkey Outta Nowhere is tied to all three and is really the over-arching brand. It allows me to focus on my main company while still mentioning the assorted side projects. It also means no more juggling multiple cards.
Michael updated my old card and worked within my limitations (don’t touch the logo, don’t touch the monkey) to come up with this new take. It’s very much in the same vein as my old card (same logo, same monkey, same colors), but it’s a major boost in quality. I know how important designers are and how much they can bring to the table, but it’s cool to see it firsthand. I ordered the cards from Uprinting.com today and I’m excited to get them in my hands and see if they’re as cool in reality as they are on screen (that step is always a little scary).
Major thanks goes to Michael Buckingham for the design (I should also give a tip of the hat to Matthew Taylor who gave me advice on the original design five years ago and helped me solidify the logo and the monkey), Jeffrey Martin for the Start Seeing Art logo (we’ll be rolling that out to the Start Seeing Art site soon) and Gabe Taviano for mentioning Uprinting.com as a good (and cheap) source for business card printing.
Unlike Taviano, I managed to order my new cards just in time to miss the only major out of town conference I’ve attended in five years. Oops. On the plus side, they’ll arrive in plenty of time for Christmas.
And the best part? No more using a sharpie to cross out the three-year-old mailing address.
When it gets less funny is this blog post, the Truth about James L. Paris and Christian Chirp, alleging that he lied about being banned from Twitter (part of the ethos of Christian Chirp), that he censors Chirp content and that he was indicted for securities fraud. The comments get even uglier as Paris himself shows up to argue the charges.
Oh, Christians. And we wonder why people think we’re so weird (I mean persecuted). Musician and rabble-rouser Justin McRoberts has a good take on Christian Chirp. It’s not ha-ha funny, but it’s good.
Craigslist is one of the incredible success stories of the web. And they do it by thumbing their nose at conventional wisdom. They don’t care about stunning design, complicated systems or making more money. Craigslist is all about functionality. If you haven’t read Wired‘s August 2009 story on Craigslist it’s worth a look behind the veil at one of the web’s weirder successes.
As great a techno wonder as Craigslist is, I hate using it. Why? It’s nothing wrong with the site, it’s the people. Sadly people are often the downfall to many of technology’s innovations. Every time I post something on Craigslist I get countless e-mails with stupid questions, drawn out conversations that don’t go anywhere and time and time again I’m left hanging.
So here’s a tip to improve your Craigslist experience: Be helpful.
Tonight it finally happened. My mom joined Facebook. And friended me.
I’ve been friended by my mother. Now I know how everyone feels.
Once the initial shock faded I approved that friend request and heartily (and somewhat jokingly) welcomed my mother into the world of Facebook.
The idea of children being embarrassed of their parents online is kind of funny. I get it. I think what’s behind all of it is the false sense of privacy that we have online. We have this sense that somehow certain people aren’t seeing what we’re saying online, that this is our own unique space. The problem with that is that it’s just not true. No matter how protected you think you are, whatever you do or say online is public knowledge. You have no expectation of privacy (or you shouldn’t). Continue reading Oh No! My Mom’s on Facebook→
One of my favorite Johnny Cash songs is “Devil’s Right Hand.” It’s on a playlist I created of half Lexi’s music and half my music (I can only stand so much Veggie Tales). I guess we’ve been playing that list a little too much lately, because now “Devil’s Right Hand” appears to be one of Lexi’s favorites.
At Cultivate earlier this week Clint Runge of Archrival marketing made a statement about the ease of causes. He was talking about generational marketing and the differences between Generation X and Generation Y. While general principles and trends may be true, I hate when marketers try to split people into clearly defined groups based on when we were born. Babies aren’t born into neat categories like that.
But that’s besides the point.
He said that the most important cause for today’s generation is the environment. Easily the number one cause they rally behind. Why? He said because it’s easy. Few will argue about the importance of protecting our planet. It requires little research and little knowledge. You can do simple things to be more eco-friendly and you’ve done your part. Compare that to health care. There’s a cause that’s not simple. It requires loads of research, you’ll face lots of opposition and argument, and you’ll be hard pressed to find a simple way to get involved like recycling paper or turning off a light.
“Social cause used to mean marching and burning bras,” Runge said. “Today it means wearing a bracelet or a T-shirt. Putting a sticker on your laptop. It’s too easy.”