Social Media Top 5: The Blogfather Speaks, The CEO Counts & the Map Don’t Lie

Only three this week. We’ve had holidays. Happy New Year.


Image Credit: Desirae on Flickr

Iran’s “Blogfather” – This is Why we Must Have Good Things

After last week’s story about Medium claiming to be the future of Web content, it is interesting to see this story- an Iranian blogger emerges from six years in prison aghast at the prevalence of off-domain content. If Hossein Derakhshan was willing to go to jail for his blogging activities, I am inclined to believe what he says about the power of owned platforms (blogs on your own web sites) over social sites such as Twitter, Facebook and Medium, among others. The heart of the matter is not strange to most of us who have worked in online content: the Facebooks of the world are interested in keeping you on their platform, and not in connecting you with the vast majority of other sites. They are, in Derakshan’s word, “blind” to the rest of the web, blind to hyperlinks that would take precious eyeballs from their beancounter’s paradise of internal clicks. As he puts it: “hyperlinks aren’t just the skeleton of the web: they are its eyes, a path to its soul.”

This soul is an open one, and as much as we like these social platforms, losing site of your own domain where you own and control your content (to the extent that is possible) to me is preferable. What so you think?

Social Data: Does the CEO Really Get Directly Involved? (Come On Now…)

Parsing data from social media? Important. Having executive buy-in? Absolutely! However, I am skeptical that he CEO of such a large company as the retail giant Target is as directly involved in social media analytics as this article says he is. Is it true? Seems like something the details of which would be produced in more detail at the sub-level. My guess is that Target CEO Brian Cornell is well-briefed by the team charged with the work. All that said, it seems the work is towards a goal that many companies and agencies give lip service to but few really deliver on- social analytics geared to improve service, products and bottom line. Cynical me just has a hard time believing a CEO is that conversant in the details among the many other facets of the job.

Geographical Correctness – the Map Don’t Lie

I understand that context is important to brand image, but this Marriott Hotel in Charleston, SC cannot help the fact that it is down the street from the church where the recent infamous mass shooting took place. Sending takedown requests to people who happen to – innocently- put up pictures with both in the frame is, I would argue, more harmful to brand image than accidents of geography. It also brings more attention to this apparently unwelcome fact. But that’s just my opinion.

To be fair, the hotel apologized. Too little, too late (and to that phrase, does it always have to be both)? One would hope that a company learns from this, and that the rest of us know that mistakes happen (and don’t exist solely for us to blog about and stick into our “social media screwups” slide deck), so calm it on the brand-shaming.



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