Pet Peeves: Washington Post Facebook App
Recently I noticed in my Facebook timeline (yeah, i look at that) a lot of links to interesting stories with the “Washington Post” logo on them. Trusted news source, so why not click? Being greeted with a pop-up asking me to grant a Facebook app permission just so I can read articles I always used to read anyway. Kudos to getting more people to post your articles, WaPo, but making people give access to an app just to view them is really creepy. To be fair, if you deny the app you are taken directly to the article (not so, it seems, with other similar publisher apps) but it’s still creepy to me. Blech. It’s important to consider the user experience when taking advantage of a popular platform. There’s a give and take. Does WaPo cross a line there? It does for me.
Liz Strauss and Quitting Klout
There has been a lot written lately about problems with Klout (the social media influence scorekeeper) and why it makes some people uneasy (score is too simple a metric to be useful, “algorithm” is unexplained, potentially horrific privacy stories). Liz Strauss recently wrote a more detailed and heartfelt post about why she opted out of Klout (now that, thanks to Danny Brown and others, one can actually do that). Am I moved to quit Klout? No, my curiosity remains, and the potential use as a (very) minor tool in finding out the right people for the right conversations and messages remains. I’ll support people wanting to leave for these legitimate reasons, but I’ll remain patient.
Whither Gowalla (Owning Your Stuff Part 9,000,000)
For those who like Location-based social media services: a few months ago, Gowalla changed how it works, focusing on users telling “stories” rather than merely checking in to a location and posting said checkins to Twitter and Facebook. As a way to differentiate from Foursquare, it made sense. But I found the idea to be more work than I wanted to devote, so I used the service less.Now that Gowalla has been purchased by Facebook and is essentially being dismantled, I am reminded of the “owning your stuff: mantra that I like to mumble on occasion. Gowalla users don’t have a lot of content stored that they are going to miss; not like if a service like Tumblr or Posterous went away. But it is a reminder that if you rely on an outside service for anything, you run the risk of that service going away and having to change course. I have worked with clients who ran campaigns with Gowalla. A tighter integration would be more troublesome, but it is also hard in this social media environment to run up some sort of consistency if services keep rising and falling. Part of the environment, I’m afraid
Apple’s Social Media Policy Leaked
So, an Apple store employee is fired because her rants about apple online to friends saw the light of day. So, Apple’s restrictive social media policy was leaked. As a PR person, I have always had problems with Apple’s closed culture. Maybe friends would expect me to rail against Apple’s fascist-state communications regime. Not at all. I think that while restrictive, the Apple ethos is quite clear, and seemingly within their rights (I’m not a lawyer. Whoopee). Don;t talk smack about your employer- or anyone/thing- anywhere unless you’re ok with it coming back to you. Period.
Losing My Stuff
I have been travelling again lately, and have begun to realize that the things I have lost or left behind on trips might be able to tell their stories.
“Remember me? I’m your Ray-Ban sunglasses you left in that Nissan Cube you rented in San Francisco in 2010. Oh fine, you thought you would wait until your next trip rather than spending the small pile of cash to have me shipped back. How can you be surprised that I had disappeared from the lost & found when you finally came back to claim me? I’m an attractive pair of sunglasses- you lose, and I’m seeing the world through different eyes now.”
“Well weren’t you clever? Throwing me in the front seat of the rental car in Orlando because I wasn’t worthy to take the holiday party snaps- a “snap” decision you made after parking. Oh sure, you were going to toss me back in your bag the next morning on the way to the airport. Seems I’m still here, big-shot, stuck between the seat and the gear-shift, waiting for the next renter to liberate me. I’ll bet you’re glad you already uploaded your last crappy photos to Flickr. Enjoy your next camera, bought in a rush to replace me, on the cheap no doubt. Feh.”
“I seem to have found my way to the Land of Doug’s Lost Pan-Mass Challenge Baseball Caps. Remarkable, considering you only misplaced two (or was it three?) of us in your house, the rest being spread around in Las Vegas, San Francisco, and Maine. Enjoy that new light blue cap. It sets off your eyes (not). Putz.”