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When is far too far?

Powerful men, no matter how brilliant and accomplished, can suffer from a form of temporary insanity caused by the interaction of arrogance and a huge ego.

The General Patraeus scandal has reached an all time news coverage especially in television media.

Americans are torn about the question of private life and the public sphere.

Americans are already trying to work out whether it makes sense to even consider the sexual lives of public officials. There is the none-of-our-business crowd, which  is gaining strength, pitted against those who would like to keep aiming for strict ideals of moral code. if you can cheat on your wife, can you cheat on your country?

A sex scandal will push everything off the top of the rundown or the front page, especially when the most immediate next challenge is the “fiscal cliff,” a dry, over covered topic that will cause most people to change the channel or turn the page.Image


Blah, Blah, Blah turns into Blog, Blog, Blog

Here at Florida Institute of Technology, in every class I have attended, they fully encourage blogging. Even our marketing department constantly craves people with interesting and unique stories to blog about.


But its not only F.I.T. Check out these other colleges.Image

     Vanderbilt uses WordPress to produce a monthly online magazine. Filled with great articles and pictures catering to alumni, you would never know you weren’t holding a glossy magazine. We live in a time when protecting the environment is important to many people. Subscribers are making the move to online paperless magazines. Vanderbilt Magazine and WordPress show you how easy designing an online magazine can be.

But just how are Universities using Social Media, and how do they measure ‘success’ of the channel? 

  • By far the biggest effort is put into engaging their alumni networks and creating and maintaining the ‘brand’ image of the Institution.
  • Over 4/5ths of Universities use social media to engage their alumni network.
  • One in three Universities claim their use of social media is more “efficient” in reaching their target audience … but is this efficient in staff time or efficient in results?
  • Nearly 2/3rds of Universities say the number of likes or friends or followers is a measure of success, yet only 1/10th say the link between social media use and student applications is important.
  • 1/5th of Universities think they are “very successful” with their use of social media, so that leaves 80% who think there is room for improvement … I wonder what they think they need to do that they’re not already, and why they’re not doing it yet then?
  • While Facebook is the biggest social network the Universities studied are using, services like Flickr and blogs have had the biggest investment (time or effort) since 2010.


The more you know, eh?


So Many Options

This all started last night at around 2:30 in the morning.
Studying for my marketing test, and finding it somewhat interesting, I was wondering where I can go in this field. 

I go to a really popular search engine (God knows I’ll be sued for copy right something these days,) and find out all about marketing analytics and what schools are the best for a masters.

First, I hobble across this YouTube video parody. Basically making fun of graduate schools and essentially calling them a “scam.”

After laughing and reading the diverse, educated comments under the video, I kept up with my search. First school and problem big dream school is Wharton school of business at University of Pennsylvania. I signed up for more info. Later today Wharton admissions counselors were doing a live chat at 5 p.m. “Philly” time.

Next I got an email to check out their forum for frequently asked questions.

Next I got an email to check out their blog for more in-depth student stories.

Next I got an email to subscribe to their email updates. A this point I was scared, if I wasn’t getting email updates now, what was it like to…

If you in generally google your school (in this case, Wharton) you get so many different kinds of search results and answers. Their wikipedia page, what other schools people search in addition to Wharton, their Youtube channel and a bunch of opinion pages (all positive) about Wharton.


So we can get all these information about a school, accessing so many different kinds of communication medium, and getting all up into a schools culture and attitude- only to be rejected by one flat envelope at the end. This has to be the worst kind of breakup. 

Secondly, we get so much information on these schools. We use to judge based on academics, how many people get  a job after and cost. Now its all about blogs, and what people tweeted, the events, how people interact and it can go on for months. What data is really important for us to make a decision?

So Who Is Actually Winning?

When Barack Obama seemed to have had the poll numbers to back it up  (that was just a week ago, wasn’t it? ) there were abundant suggestions that claimed liberal media bias was paving the way for Obama back to the White House.

But the performance by Mitt Romney in last week’s debate, a poll by the Pew Research Center showed that Mr. Romney had not only made up ground, but was four points ahead of President Barack Obama among likely voters. (And a Gallup poll seemed to support the notion that Mr. Romney was surging.)

As Joseph Weisenthal, the Business Insider writer and tweet machine known as @TheStalwart, “If you want to know the big bias in media (of which I am guilty) it’s storyline bias.” The headlines reflected not disappointment, but excitement that the game was on.

 The New York Times: “Romney Erases Obama’s Convention Bounce In media narrative.”

Slate: “Was Romney’s Debate Win The Most Convincing in History? It Looks That Way.”

Liberal bias hasn’t gone away, it’s just been drowned out by a convincing Romney victory in the debate. I think what journalists, conservative or liberal, always crave more than actual fairness, are twists. Then, each side gets its turn to whine about something. Which, in turn, is fairness once removed. This election has made clear, nobody knows anything. But if the media is putting a thumb on the scale, its usually one that points toward anything more exciting than what they are already covering.


May the Social Media Odds Be Ever in your Favor.

There’s something uplifting about saying we should all be focused on the “issues” and not the “personalities” in the presidential debates. But is that right?

Tonight we’re into the quadrennial round of presidential debates. The time when we all get to gather around our television sets and even laptops to watch the two gladiators who would be our next President go one on one dealing with the issues.

But I’m not sure we even need the social scientists to tell us to trust our instincts about whom we want to be our President. After all, aren’t some of the very things we judge by appearances such as trustworthiness, intelligence, and decisiveness.

That’s why these televised and streamed presidential debates are so important. Sure, there will be plenty of talk about the issues. Everyone and especially the commentators will be keeping track of how well the two candidates handle what they say about the important things we face as a country. But all of us will be judging the two men every bit as much on what they’re communicating to us about themselves as people.

Twitter made a debate page for this evenings event. YouTube said earlier this week that it plans special streaming coverage of the debates as well. The entire country can be the commentators and their own experts. These days everyone has a voice whether someone wants to hear it or not.

Better to be Feared or Loved?

 News is defined as “the report of recent events through facts and collective information.”

Censorship is defined as “the suppression of speech or other public communication which may be considered objectionable, harmful, sensitive, or inconvenient as determined by the government, media outlet, or other controlling body.”

It is the news is to act as the Fourth Estate. To report facts to the people. Recently, this article has the NYTimes admitting major news organizations to fall to censorship by campaigns or government officials.

Media censorship takes many forms in the way you get your news. While news stories are often edited for length, there are many choices that are made that are designed to keep some information from becoming public. Sometimes these decisions are made to safeguard a person’s privacy, others to protect media outlets from corporate or political fallout.


Project Censored specializes in covering the top stories which were subjected to censorship either by being ignored or downplayed by the mainstream media each year. Project Censored is a research team composed of more than 200 university faculty, students, and community experts who annually review up to 1,000 news story submissions for content, reliability of sources, and national significance. The top 25 stories selected are submitted to a distinguished panel of judges who rank them in order of importance. 

Is it better for news to be feared by all the corporations and government and report to the people, or loved by the people and risk getting a slap on the wrist?Image



     Companies wish they could use social media to conduct a focus group on an a product or serivce. But no, you can’t just open a Twitter account and say, “Hey, what do you think?” But you can use it for research and development two different ways: social media monitoring and directly seeking customer feedback. 

   The first approach is to use social media monitoring to gather research about your company, product or service, competitors or industry. By listening to online conversations about certain topics your customers might be talking about, you can gather competitive intelligence that can inform your decision making and produce a better offering.

   Let’s say you make HTML coding CD’s and sell them from your dorm in Florida and they sell fairly well. But you need some R&D or at least some market research to know if what you’re planning to produce makes sense for the new CSS code you intend to roll out in the coming weeks.

   So you go to a free monitoring service like enter some keywords until you start to see some relevant results for conversations occurring from users in or around Orlando. For instance, “This needs to be written like I’m five,” is a phrase you might see pop up a couple of times.

    Then you might notice that when people are talking about what their coding needs, they say the CD needs to be big Mac compatible. And there’s your new product idea harvested from raw data on the Web.

   A second approach is to openly participate in social media and build relationships and connection with your actual customers so you can turn to them into your focus group. As an active social media participant, building followers on Twitter, fans and likes on Facebook, readers of your blog or even subscribers to your email newsletter, you’re essentially growing your potential focus group every day.

   Make a list of the product or service feedback items you might want to ask customers about. Then make a list of the information you’d like to know about your customers or prospective customers. Look at that list and pick the one or two major areas you wish you could solve with a little customer input or feedback.

   These two scenarios don’t require big budgets, or lots of scientific testing. But they are legitimate research-and-development practices any business can use by implementing social media for R&D purposes.


If No One Comments On A Blog, Does It Exist?

      According to a 2008 survey by Technorati, which runs a search engine for blogs, only 7.4 million out of the 133 million blogs the company tracks had been updated in the past 120 days. That means 95 percent of blogs are being abandoned, left to lie fallow on the Web, where they become public remnants of a dream unfulfilled.

      Not all blogs die from lack of reader interest. Some bloggers find themselves too busy with homework and after school activities or if older, parenting and maintaining a job. Other people use more immediate formats, like Twitter and Facebook. Maybe a few would like to even not care, and keep what’s left of their privacy nowadays. 


   (Image Credit:

 Blogging does take a lot of time and some people make a profession out of it, making it their life. It is up to the blogger to sit down and think of something to write about to generate responses, comments and discussion. Most people don’t like hard work.

Believe only half of everything you read.

Everyone is on one form of social media or another, and each gets scrutinized by peers and employers.
Sometimes it fails.

First we have the most recent screw up of NBC and the late Neil Armstrong.
NBC was the first to learn about the death of Neil Armstrong, but announced on “Astronaut Neil Young, first man to walk on moon, dies at age 82,” which was quickly caught by readers and Tweeted by thousands.
One small error for a writer, one giant error for a national news conglomerate.
Lesson learned: Fact check, or know your history.

Woody Harrelson on February 3rd, hosted a Ask Me Anything, AMA, on Reddit. Users can ask any questions, provoking discussion. Reddit users quickly learned Harrelson was only doing an AMA to promote his movie, Rampart, and there was a quick backlash against him and his publicist. Harrelson is now constantly made fun of on Reddit and other social media sites.
Lesson learned: Know your audience.

Mid-January McDonalds launched a Twitter campaign asking people to tweet memories or great stories involving the hashtag #McDStories. This turned negative fast. Users used this as an opportunity to share horrific experiences and very negative opinions.
Lesson learned: Have a plan B.


As we all should know, be careful on social media. It may be your profile, but use privacy settings. Who knows what can get out there?