Thoughts on Buffer Pro after 1 Month

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Moving into 2017 I knew I needed to do more to increase engagement on social media for both WP in One Month & How I Built It. Simply promoting isn’t a great strategy; while I convert most listeners and students through my personal Twitter, I want change that. I tried doing it manually for a while, but it was too time consuming. After toying with the idea, I decided to upgrade to Buffer Pro for a year to see if it would help me while also saving time. About a month in, I have some thoughts.

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Quick Tip: Download an Archive of your Facebook Data

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There’s a lot going on on the Internet right now. Websites getting hacked (Blizzard being the most recent), companies doing presumably whatever they want with our data, and the cultivation of a group of people who over-share (this includes yours truly). I’ve written a bit on Facebook and other social media and how I think it’s affecting our culture. What I haven’t seen a lot of is writing on what’s called, “Data Liberation.” This is, retrieving your data from the social networks you use so often.

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Employers and Colleges Asking to see Social Network Activity

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This morning a read a story on MSNBC that got me all fired up: Govt. agencies, colleges demand applicants’ Facebook passwords.

It talks about potential employers and schools asking for access to view facebook/twitter accounts either by logging in during an interview or by friending an official.  This is not OK; it shouldn’t be happening on any level and the fact that it’s going on is an invasion of privacy.

If you go through the time to set certain things on private, they should stay private. If you can’t ask personal questions during an interview, Facebook should be off limits as well, so long as it’s set to private by the user.

Everyone should be aware of what’s happening and of your rights in these cases. Unfortunately, there isn’t a law against this yet (unless you can make the argument that it answers illegal job interview questions) but you can always ask the interview why they want access and how it applies to the job. If they can’t make their case, kindly refuse their request and remind them about the kind of questions that are off limits during interviews.

If you’d rather not deal with that kind of confrontation, you could always say you don’t have a Facebook account, or create a “professional” one that you use to show interviewers. The point, however, is that employers and schools should not be asking for this information in the first place.

Social Media More Addictive than Cigarettes and Alcohol. Really?

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BRG is reporting this morning that a new study suggests Facebook and Twitter are more addictive than cigarettes or alcohol. The way the study was set up is Blackberry users were polled several times a day, asking what they wanted to see in the last 30 minutes; they were also asked to rate their own desire.

I really don’t like studies like this; they are comparing something people enjoy using to 2 very addictive substances. Possibly the biggest flaw here is that people are asked to gauge their own desire. In a world where people say, “Today, I had to have a serious talk with my boyfriend about his Miley Cyrus obsession. FML” (src) and a meme exists citing “First World Problems,” people probably cannot accurately gauge their feelings/desires. Desire is relative to personal experience. It’s like how college students call themselves alcoholics because they drink every weekend. Some are kidding, but some really mean it. But I’m a little off-topic now.

My point is that studies like this (and statistics in general) really do not show us any useful data. Of-course people are going to use Facebook and Twitter more than cigarettes and alcohol. There is no law prohibiting minors from the use of social networks (not  that I’m opposed to that). Plus, Facebook and Twitter are free. (To be fair, that latter point was cited in BGR’s article.)

Until people start neglecting their responsibilities to use Facebook and Twitter, we can’t say that social networks are more addictive than cigarettes and alcohol especially.

Links Round Up for 03/28/11

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Links Round Up for 03/20/11

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Links Round Up for 02/27/11

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Also, I’ve created a Delicious account for Manifest Development. I’ll post tech/web dev/business related links there. Check it out. They also get automatically posted to @manifestdev on Twitter.

Know Your Way Around Facebook Privacy

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In my latest offering from Web.Appstorm, I take a comprehensive look at Facebook’s Privacy Settings.  I take a look at what you, your friends, and apps, and what they can share about you- as well as what shows up about you in search engines. This is one of my better, more helpful posts- especially if you’ve never taken a look at them before.

Know Your Way Around Facebook Privacy