Buzz and Brilliance: Week ending Feb 16

Over the week we go through a lot of content - news and blog posts, how tos and conceptual posts on the state of the internet.  Every Sunday we share some of our favourites with you.

Check out the links and let us know in the comments if you have any questions or if you read any great posts this week!


This week Twitter accounced that it was going to start ranking tweets.  The idea is that they will be able to help people find the valuable content from the sea of noise. (Mashable)

Bell Let’s Talk Day was this week.  Bell pledge 5 cent per tweet, Facebook share, text and long distance calls to Canadian Mental Health. My stream was FULL of the #BellLetsTalk hashtag, and my Facebook feed clearly showed the success of the campaign as well. There were 96,266,266 actions taken, raising almost $5 million. These actions weren’t all though - I saw people blogging and REALLY talking about mental health.  We all need to talk about mental health more and seeing the power of social media do such good in one day was fabulous to see.

There are so many incredible thought leaders and experts in the field of social media.  When they get pooled together to come up with some of their favourite tips there’s always a great variety of information to learn from. (Social Media Examiner)

You are the future of marketing, we all are.  Social is about community and understanding that and growing your own community is what it’s all about. (Awaken Your Superhero)


Privacy is one of the hottest topics on the interwebs, but it’s a topic that’s rife with misinformation and misunderstanding. The biggest is around private information and personalization. There is a wide gap between the two and Mitch Joel is working to clarify. (Six Pixels of Separation)

Vine, the new service from Twitter that gives users a platform to create 6 second videos has become all the rage in the few weeks since it was launched. Like any platform or content type, it’s important to remember a few things about what you should and shouldn’t do to ensure you protect yourself. (Grow Business Blog)

I’ve often defended EdgeRank as being something that is useful, but it’s clear that not everyone feels that way. It is clear that others want their feed flooded with every post from friends and pages they’ve liked. Occasionally, I have days that I agree. There’s no doubt in my mind that EdgeRank was implemented as part of a long-term strategy to monetize the network. But what if there was another way for Facebook to make money? (The Next Web)

Do you have a Twitter strategy? Or one for Facebook? How about Pinterest? Having a strategy for individual networks is going to put you in a hamster wheel you can’t get off. It’s more valuable and effective to have an overall content strategy. The platforms are tactics to meet your goals as part of an overall strategy. 


What you might have missed this week on the Media Mesh:

Who is watching you? You’d be Surprised!

Introduction to LinkedIn: Who’s using it and how?

It’s all about them: Scott Sigler

What is your content worth to your audience?

Leave us a comment and tell us what some of your favourite reads were this week!

The Facebook private message controversy: how to hide posts from your timeline

If you haven’t heard already I’m sure that it won’t come as any great surprise that another controversy with Facebook privacy came to light last week.

This time the issue is private messages showing on users public timeline.

Are they or aren’t they?

Facebook has investigated and they are saying that it isn’t so, with the explanation that wall posts and private messages are two separate systems coded in different languages. However, quite a few users have gone and examined the messages that are showing from their friends and maintain that they were once private messages.

We’ve become much more aware of privacy concerns since the time of these posts (pre-2010), as the Facebook interface has become more and more open. So, whether or not private messages have become public, if there is content on your wall that you don’t want public, now is the time - as Facebook finalizes the Timeline rollout - to hide or delete those posts from your timeline. 

The posts in question all seem to be from before 2010, which happens to coincide roughly with the timing of when we went from wall-to-wall conversations to having likes and comments on posts. So, when looking at the Timeline, these posts will already look different.

To hide them, go to the year you want to hide posts from others. You’ll find a box labeled “Friends” with all the posts from your friends for that year (it’s usually right at the top of each year on the right side of your screen. The process is the same for any Timeline story:

I hid the friends box for all years, so all those posts still exist and I can still access them from my Activity Log, which you can get to by clicking the button at the top of your Timeline page.

One other step I took to be certain that private messages wouldn’t be made public was to delete my old private messages. 

PLEASE NOTE: Hiding content from your Timeline does not mean it is deleted. It may be viewable in other places on Facebook - a friend’s wall, company page, etc. If you don’t want that content to exist on the live Facebook site anymore, select to delete it.

Regardless of what anyone believes about this particular incident and how it happened, it is disturbing to think that “private” messages are no longer private. But this situation is a very effective reminder that nothing we do on the internet is ever private. It’s important to remember this before posting, because data posted to the internet never truly goes away.

If you have something truly private to say/share with someone, do it via email or text if you have to communicate electronically. Don’t rely on a social network to keep your private business from going public.

Buzz, Brilliance and Blogging: Week ending May 5

Every week I compile a list of the noteworthy social media news (Buzz), balanced with valuable commentary (Brilliance) and some good advice about Blogging as well. The links that follow are to sites and blogs that I read on a regular basis - consider them recommended reading for you too. Or you can just come back here each week for a taste of what stuck out to me.



You can now indicate on Facebook whether you wish to donate your organs or not. Whether people actually post it as a status or not, there’s been an 800% rise in registrations in California! I’m still waiting for the option to show up on my profile. 

The other big news from Facebook this week was the launch of Facebook Offers. This functionality is being rolled out slowly, but Lara and I already see it on one of the pages we admin. If you have a small business, you will want to use this feature! Here’s how you can request it for your page if you don’t already have it.

Twitter is making some tweaks to its user interface (UI) to make it better. The experience has always been one that many (including myself) have refused to partake in. Fortunately, the updates since January have worked really well and I use more than I ever did before. Regardless of where you tweet, it’s good to know if your tweets are worth reading or not.


Do you read TOS and privacy policies? Neither do I, but we really should. Here’s just a few things you’ll want to know from the privacy policy of any web service. Of course, if you don’t like or trust the privacy,there are ways to stop these sites from tracking you.

“Shun social media for business at your own peril.” Says Mitch Joel in this post about social media and business to business (B2B) use. It oversimplifies it a bit, but B2B companies need to use social media like B2C does. You’re creating relationships with individuals, not corporations.

Jason Falls went on a bit of a rant about Klout this week and it’s an interesting read. Love it or hate it, Klout isn’t going away. Though if you hate it, perhaps you should delete your automatically generated account.


This post really resonated with me, because I don’t always answer a question or solve a problem with my posts. But if you do, you will not fail to provide value and everyone is short on time these days - we need content that serves a purpose. 

Many people have questions about how to do this or that even months or years after they’ve launched a blog. Here’s a few of those questions answered.

This is one I’m working on. Ergo, this weekly roundup keeps getting shorter. Have you noticed?

Buzz and Brilliance: Week ending March 10

Every week I compile list of the noteworthy news (Buzz) from my week of reading. I like to balance news with commentary, but it has to be really valuable for my readers (Brilliance). The links that follow are to sites and blogs that I read on a regular basis - consider them recommended reading for you too. Or you can just come back here each week for a taste of what stuck out to me.

- Karen


It should come as no surprise that the announcements from last week’s fMC have spilled over into this week with questions about what Facebook Premium means for users/advertisers on the site. Additionally, with a post-fMC addendum to Facebook’s SEC filing, there is speculation about Timeline competing with Premium.

Other potentially damaging news for Facebook (and businesses relying on it) is the question of sites who use Facebook for login authentication. Just what DO their users do when Facebook is down? 

For users, potentially troubling news this week comes from reports that revealed how Facebook moderation of reported content is handled. Am I concerned about this news? No. Because I think it is the responsibility of each user to ensure that what they share online is something they’re comfortable becoming public - whether it’s a login site or not.

Finally, if you own a business, what do you think of Timeline? Some think Timeline is hurting small businesses. Others think the challenges businesses face with timeline are minimal and not insurmountable. I think time will tell. Businesses who take an active interest in the Facebook channel and learn more should do well.

A truly enterprising Pinterest fan released a bookmarklet ( this week that allows users to pin quotes. In true Pinterest style, the result is clean, simple and won’t clutter the site. I hope. The direct news about Pinterest isn’t quite as good. It has been confirmed that spam, phishing scams and other nefarious content is now making its way into the feeds onto our beloved Pinterest.

Twitter has taken one more step to become a truly global giant by incorporating right to left tweeting. This makes 28 languages that the world can tweet in. 

One fascinating new use of Twitter is the announcement of the arrangement between AmEx and Twitter that allows users to tweet coupons. This could be just the beginning of using the platform for social commerce and another interesting way for brands to interact with individuals as well.

One Twitter exec publicly proclaimed that the site needs a re-design of the interface. This is interesting, given all the recent work that’s been done, but it’s not untrue. In their bid to keep the site as simple as possible but grow it to be more robust at the same time, it’s actually a little confusing to navigate and find what you need in some areas (and I’m an experienced user saying this). Here’s hoping they get it right next time.

Google+ hangouts are now more accessible to those who have visual impairments, thanks to an accessibility extension that uses text-to-speech technology for the chat sessions. 

There’s been a lot of coverage in the last couple weeks about the information that was released with numbers stating that visitors to Google+ stayed only an average of 3 minutes in January. Vic Gundotra claims that the number isn’t necessarily accurate based on the fact that people are using Google+ optimized services. That may be true, but I think it’s safe to say that Google+ can’t claim to be anywhere near the ballpark of Facebook’s 7.5 hours.


One of the ways to determine the return on investment (ROI) of social media is to endeavor to undertake activities that are inherently measurable. It can be done. But is it really necessary to measure everything you do? 

I think having a blog post reserve is one of the smartest things any blogger can do. It avoids the problem of coming up with content the night before you want to publish. Unfortunately, I’ve got too many blogs and not enough time to have much more than an editorial calendar filled with intent. I really hope I don’t break a hand or finger any time soon. I’ve got some work to do. 

You think Facebook is the biggest social network in the world, don’t you? What would you say if I told you it isn’t? Email is. Think about your list of contacts in your email client (Gmail, Outlook, etc.). It’s probably full to bursting. Businesses who leverage the power of email are onto something good if they’re doing it right. Here’s a few ideas for content to share with your email list subcribers..

There’s been a lot of discussion lately about the data that web sites are collecting from users - particularly companies like Facebook and Google. The potential uses for marketers are endless, but users find it creepy. Some want to be tracked for a better web experience. Most just want to ensure their privacy isn’t violated. So, as Mitch Joel points out, it’s very important that marketers don’t go over the line into creepy, though that can be easier said than done with the range of views out there.


Want to learn more about social media but don’t know where to begin? Wellman Wilson is putting on a social media workshop March 20th where we’ll talk about Twitter, Facebook and setting up a strategy. Find out more here!

Buzz and Brilliance: Week ending March 3

Every week I compile list of the noteworthy news (Buzz) from my week of reading. I like to balance news with commentary, but it has to be really valuable for my readers (Brilliance). The links that follow are to sites and blogs that I read on a regular basis - consider them recommended reading for you too. Or you can just come back here each week for a taste of what stuck out to me.

- Karen


It feels a little like there are three social networks out there right now. Facebook, ever present in all its controversial glory. Google+…same. And Pinterest…yeah, same. What happened to Twitter!? Twitter’s out there, vying for attention but not doing too well. They are expanding ads. Just like…you guessed it: Facebook! Based on my RSS feed this week, they couldn’t even get much attention from selling our old tweets. Is this a sign that people are okay with this attempt at monetization?

Pinterest is all the rage these days and everyone is working hard to convince others that it is important and worth their time. You know your social networking site has made it when words are made up to identify with you (Pinfluence) and tools are built specifically to measure influence (PinClout). Another good metric of success is becoming the top driver of traffic for women’s magazines. There seems to be no end to the stories about interesting and innovative uses of the tool and how to drive traffic to your content, even YouTube. Unfortunately, all is not well in the area of copyright on Pinterest, but this post by Amy Lynn Andrews has a comprehensive run-down of the whole situation and sound advice for users to consider. One Arizona attorney has gone on record as saying that Pinterest needs to change their TOS or risk being shut down by the DMCA. We’ll keep all of you avid Pinterest users posted as this plays out.

Admittedly, our site (and company) is very new, but we’ve added our LinkedIn follow company button that was just announced this week.  It took two seconds to create and install. (Okay, maybe ten.) If you want one, just visit this site to get your button. And, if you don’t have your Company set up on LinkedIn…consider changing that. Here’s a bonus LinkedIn profile tip for you, too.

Google officially hit go on its umbrella privacy policy and it’s been a hot topic this week. I think the move is fine. I will continue to use Docs, Webmaster, Analytics, Gmail, Reader and all the other services through Google that I’ve had for years. What they’re doing isn’t any different from what other sites have done. Do they always honor the “Don’t Be Evil” mantra they’re famous for? No, but name me one person/company who does. Some people see great benefits and actually want to be tracked by Google (and others). I can’t argue with his logic when I know it makes for a better web experience. The privacy policy isn’t the only privacy brouhaha that Google is involved in, though.

I’ve saved the longest, biggest news for last. There was a rumor going around this week that Facebook is reading your texts if you have the mobile app on your phone. Don’t worry - it’s not true, says Facebook. (Note: If they mislead us in their statement, I guarantee you we would know, because there are ways to test it.)

Okay, so that wasn’t really the biggest news of the week. Facebook’s announcements at fCM were the big headline grabber, with just one month for Facebook marketers to get ready. Here’s a quick overview of the whole shebang from Marketing Land. Here’s a list of just a few articles that cover a few of the bigger announcements in greater depth:

Here’s a great resource with information on how to prepare (and look for more from us later this week as we continue the Social 101 series with more Facebook).


Some of the best brilliance I uncover each week are posts where the people who know what they’re doing just talk about how they do it. This post from Jay Baer on his 9 social media hacks is an example of this. Easy information to share that will most certainly help others.

We all have different “hacks” we use daily. Tell me some of yours!

It’s important when starting with a social media network that once you gain an audience (even one person is an audience, by the way) that you’re fully committed to participation. I’m not speaking to individuals - this is about businesses. Do you agree with these sentiments about Twitter users who are “not really there”?

Though personally I’m not a huge fan of email newsletters, I do subscribe to more each week and I know the value they hold. But do you? I’ve noted several times where people have referred to email as the greatest social network and perhaps there is something to this idea.

You might read this next one and think I’m trying to get onto Christopher Penn’s Follow Friday list since I think this is the third link to his site I’ve included. I’m honestly not. I just really like the way he thinks about the data we gather from our sites day-to-day. He’s got brilliant ideas for using this data to thank those who support us most and that’s truly valuable.

I gave my first presentation in a long time this week. It went well, but I’m sure there were improvements I could have made. I wish I’d read this list of tips a week and a half ago. 

Have a great week!