Social Media Top 5: PodCamp Boston, WSJ Social Media Rules are Cool, Martha Analyzes Twitter

Podcamp Boston 4 is Coming, August 8-9: I’m a little disappointed that I have a partial conflict on the 8th (it’s family, so I’m not exactly sad about it), but I plan to be around as much as possible outside of that. I have had some involvement in PodCamp Boston since the very first one in September 2006. The event is special to me because it is the first place I met folks such as Chris Brogan, Christopher Penn, Bryan Person, C.C. Chapman, Gregory Narain, and a number of other folks I consider friends (not just social media friends either).

This year’s theme, to quote the site:

“Podcasting and social media has gone beyond the geek set this year and many of us are engaging with businesses and corporations to educate them. At Podcamp Boston 4 lies the opportunities to teach people and companies about podcasting and social media.”

Will I see you at UMass Boston in August?

New Wall Street Journal Social Network Conduct Rules Trigger Bunched-Up Undies Syndrome:

So a major newspaper has added social media guidelines for reporters. Does this mean the paper is showing a “policy of opacity?” Are they treating their reporters like “kindergartners?” Does it make you not want to work there? I don’t think so.

A couple of thoughts:

  • In general, these rules spell out the common sense we need to exhibit in representing our employers’ brands– not just online but in any outside interactions. Of course, we are not used to seeing “rules” spelled out in such detail, and that makes a lot of people cry “Big Brother!” But in truth, whether these guidelines exist or not, there is a “don’t be an idiot” rule for all your interactions. A too-heavy-handed enforcement may be a different story, but that’s not in evidence today.
  • VC blogger Fred Wilson takes some sensible objections, though his objection to the line about consulting editors before publicly friending confidential sources is off-base. There are some people you want in background for a reason.
  • Valleywag takes a very entertaining low road, tying itself into knots (so you don’t have to!) to present examples of WSJ staffers “breaking” the new rules.

UPDATE: Stephen Baker of BusinessWeek weighs in with some more common sense– about how he breaks the rules often, but also how he applies them when appropriate.

Martha Stewart Talks Twitter Turkey with David Carr (not Caar) of the New York Times; Why do Her Followers Use Twitter?

I’ll cut to the chase: we’re worried that the Oprahs and Marthas of the world are ruining Twitter. Sure, more people are on Twitter to follow celebrities, but you can safely ignore them and follow the people who are there for “social networking and communication,” if you like- and note, the “social networking” crowd still edges out the “celebrity” crowd in this survey conducted by a celebrity.

Presenting, Martha Stewart: Researcher:

From The Martha Blog, Martha Stewart

From "The Martha Blog," Martha Stewart

“Twitter Visits Surpass New York Times and Wall Street Journal”
I’ll bet number of M&M’s consumed daily also surpasses the combined circulation of both papers as well. Apples to apples? not quite. Does this headline say that Twitter is supplanting the news? No- Twitter is a gateway– to news, conversations, content, locations, basically just about anything you want to direct people to. It’s not a direct replacement for anything.

Advice: Look Like Your Avatar: Peter Kim’s advice is sound: if you are representing yourself online, and especially if you plan to meet people: colleagues, clients, contemporaries, influencers- it’s great if those people recognize you right away. I get a lot of people saying they know me from my photo- even though I took it with my old cell phone, it clearly shows my face, and I’m not doing anything goofy- you can see a small version of it on the Twitter widget in the right margin of this blog. It’s one of those little things that some people ignore needlessly.


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