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The more and more discussions that I have around Social Media and Online Community building and strategies the more the discussions are had around the concept of “Social” having a presence within each and every department. While I totally agree with this concept and think that every department should have individuals that understand Social, I don’t think that the concept of spreading Community positions within each department is the appropriate way to go and believe that Community and Social Media teams deserve their own department.

Seat at the Table

What are your thoughts here? Do we, as Social evangelists within our respective businesses, have the right to our own departments, with a “seat at the table”? Has the time come?

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On May 11th, Bill Simmons (@sportsguy33), Boston Sports writer and ESPN page 2 ‘The Sports Guys World creator, created a new Twitter account, @celticschants. The account was set up for sports fans (mostly Boston Celtics fans or anyone that was against Cleveland) to discuss potential chants for when players were fouled and stepping up to the free throw line. If you have watched basketball before, you know how fans can be with chants, and waving things. And as much as I hate to give credit to Duke, their fans are the most obnoxious.

Last night, while I was watching TV, I heard the chant of “New York Knicks” when Labron James stepped to the free throw line. Each and every time. It was loud. Even the announcers were talking about it. Now he did not miss all of his free-throws, and he did have a triple-double, he did go 9-12 from the line, missing 3 attempts. Being a .742 career shooter from the free-throw line, he was right on par. But who is to say that he would have missed those if the fans were not chanting?

Anyway, I like that this “grass-roots” idea came about, was promoted and discussed and took flight. It really goes to show how Social Media can be taken off-line. What are your thoughts? Did you watch the game, or have you seen this type of execution recently?

p.s. – Don’t skip to the bottom 😉

As my prior post stated – sorry for the rant – I really did not understand why we are so transfixed on the next this and that. Then I got to thinking (please no funny comments here). Before you read this let me just say that I understand that evolution is good, and pushing the barriers is also good, but there comes a time and a place where you need to just sit back and let things happen.

Given all of the changes that Facebook has made recently, and over time for that matter, as outlined on The Huffington Post Blog  (Very interesting 2005 – present overview of how Facebook’s privacy policy has evolved), why would we not begin to look elsewhere? Yes we can set access levels to specific groups or people, and I have taken full advantage of those tools, but should we have to? Should we really be forced to control our data and be “opt’d-in” to the changes that they are making? While I understand that opting everyone in to a change will increase adoption, it can also, and many times will, have a negative effect on your community.

I have heard of people closing their account (and others that who thinking about it), while others are refusing to even open a Facebook account. Closing your account because of the changes can be seen as a knee-jerk reaction.  While I agree with many of the concerns, I am not ready to close down yet. While these are both extreme cases, it just really shows that there are many people out there that are unhappy with all these changes.

Time and time again, when things begin to spiral out of control, I generally try to sit down and let things settle for a little while. After the dust settles, you can then truly review the situation holistically and without emotion getting in the way.

What do I want out of Facebook? What happened to the tool that allowed me to create online relationships with my friends and keep in touch with them? Post photos with my networks, see what my friends were doing, and create events and groups…. They grew and grew and made some minor changes over time, some were good and others were not so much. People flocked to use the service and once they became the “3rd largest country in the world” they began to try to take over the Web. While I understand that may be a direction to go, I don’t think that it will happen.

Can you think of another Social Networking site that was similar to Facebook? One that has taken a back-seat to all of these changes? One that may just simply benefit from all of these changes? Now I may be stretching a little bit here, but would it not be ironic that the answer to “What is the next Facebook” questions turns out to be who Facebook beat out years ago?

My Space

My Space

Too many options, too little time

(ps – total rant)

Why do we consistently need to focus on “Who is the next Google killer?” or “What is the next Twitter?” Google is here and it is successful, Twitter has a loyal following and is continuing to grow in numbers. Can’t we be happy with what is at our finger tips and continue to review what is new and integrate that into our daily life? Can’t we live with enhancements to the current offerings rather than look to transplant ourselves somewhere else? What is our obsession with moving from one thing to the next?

Now don’t get me wrong, I love technology and innovation and am glad that we currently have at our disposal the tools that we do. I use Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, and other platforms to stay informed and keep in touch, but I am not looking for the next replacement to any of those. I have also worked in Social Media for over 12 years, so I am very glad to see where it has come from, but…..

With the options that are current at our fingertips, it is overwhelming, IMO. Some people are here, some are there, and some are not anywhere. How do you choose where to go and who to interact with?

This reminds me of when I was growing up – OMG, I am starting to sound like my parents now. Back in the day, we had minimal TV channels and things were on at certain times of the day – no TiVo, no DVR, just live TV. I remember running home from school or waking up early so that I could watch a show and when I would run into my friends, we would talk about it, because that was the only thing that was on TV, or the only option that we had. (I love my DVR and love that I can fast-forward through the commercials).
For kids, and adults for that matter, it is tougher now and the conversations begin with “What shows do you watch?” or What are your favorite games?” and if you don’t watch the same shows or play the same games we initially think that we don’t have anything in common with that other person. 

Is it just me, or are things beginning to move a little fast? Is there such a  thing as too many options?

Employment

I am currently employed at Autodesk as a Senior Manager of Online Community and Social Engagement. My team is responsible for the Customer Support initiatives across all of our Social channels.

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May 2010
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