Facebook is Hard – May 4, 2012
Facebook is hard.
Well, to be clearer, playing on social media is easy, but making a living there is hard. Not only does Facebook force marketing folks like me into tight little boxes, it’s also really hard to convince management that online engagement matters. Everytime my employer’s CEO mentions “Twitter” at a board meeting, the room erupts in laughter, as if creating good tweets was silly child’s play. I can only hope that our new #Idedicate campaign, which engages women in a conversation about getting a mammogram, shows the folks in charge that social media really does matter. And mammograms save lives!
Design for Living
While I’m not a fan of crowd-sourcing when it’s used for advertising or dubious research, I love that the California HealthCare Foundation is asking the web for help with data design. That’s because data are useless to us regular folks unless presented in a compelling way. In fact, creating health-related behavior change is damn hard, regardless of how much data there may be (think: smoking). I’ll be watching for the winners, and I hope that it will be more interesting and useful than this confusing infographic on working out with a mobile phone from Lab42
That Tumblr Thing
Chances are, you’re as sick and tired of political advertising as the next person, but don’t realize that these ads are very hard to escape. You’ve probably also noticed that social media gives politicians the chance to break outside the 30-second spot, and to say and do things they can’t on TV or radio. As a progressive, I enjoyed this piece that felt unscripted and honest, even though surely it was carefully planned. A far cry from this sweet, but old-school-feeling YouTube video from President Obama’s 2008 campaign, just four years ago.
You’ve no doubt heard me argue before that information technology hasn’t fundamentally changed what it means to be human. And surely electronically-facilitated social conversations are a means of expanding individuals’ networks rather than isolating them. But on the one year anniversary of my arrival in New York City, I remain skeptical of all crowds –whether they be in Times Square or online. The same phenomenon that creates dirty subway stations (careless littering, no supervision) creates messy comment streams online.