Social Networking Blog

Guy Clapperton on the evolving new media

News anchors at war

This is one of those examples of what can go wrong in social media even when you’re not using it. The following is a video clip of an American news programme – keep watching and wait and see what happens when the interview appears to be over (it’s only a couple of minutes in total).

This is decidedly not the sort of thing you want on YouTube if it involves your company.

April 14, 2009 Posted by | Social media howlers | , , , , | Leave a comment

Working for free

Since I mentioned on this blog and elsewhere a while ago that I’d been commissioned to write a book on social networking a number of people have asked me to speak at events. This is of course most kind – until you gather than a handful expect you to appear at their shindig, for which they’re expecting an income, for nothing.

It’s a minority of course, but if you’re one of them do have a look at this video…

April 14, 2009 Posted by | Social media howlers | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Think your media agency is networked web 2.0 brilliance?

Then you may have to think again. There’s been a slew of people claiming they’re the greatest, they’re the best and they’ve been checked out by ZDNet so they must be superb web agencies of late. Well, yeah, up to a point you must.

Until, that is, the woman who wrote the original blog on which you were basing your claims responds. And points out that at no stage did she offer any endorsement whatsoever.

PRs, selectively using phrases and distorting the meaning so that someone gets a bit of spin. Imagine.

The real surprise is that a journalist wasn’t expecting precisely this.

March 23, 2009 Posted by | Social media howlers | , , , , | Leave a comment

The New Rules for social networking at work

My social Network on Flickr, Facebook, Twitter...
Image by luc legay via Flickr

So I’m presenting at a Twitter-themed event the other week, and someone asks me what the rules are in social networking and how they can control someone who’s posting crazy things about their own employer online. So I have a think about the new rules in this odd new environment…

1. If you’re sitting at your computer but on Twitter, it doesn’t count as if you’re at work. Otherwise you’d have to be a complete idiot to come out with half the stuff I read on people’s Tweets.

2. It’s OK, the fact that your contract of employment says you mustn’t bring the company into disrepute doesn’t count in Cyberspace. It must be true or else people wouldn’t come up with half the stuff (etc. as above).

3. Starting a Facebook site called [Nameofmyemployer]sucks is a fine idea and won’t get you into trouble.

4. If your employer doesn’t have his or her own blog or Twitter feed, use the company logo as your avatar. It’ll be fine.

5. If your premises are open to the public, start a Facebook group about when you get a celebrity come in through the door, particularly if it’s a regular thing. Whatever they say, they love it when unexpected photographers turn up really.

6. Some people will tell you the laws of libel apply in Cyberspace just like anywhere else. Some people are just killjoys.

7. If you’re working on an exciting development for your boss, go ahead and Tweet it, Facebook it and everything, months before the official unveling is due. They love the enthusiasm and never mind their PR schedule going to hell in a handbasket.

8. If you go for a job interview and get the job, always go on Twitter and say the entire panel had halitosis and you don’t want to work for their stinking company in the first place. They never go online and you won’t be sacked before you get there. Much.

9. If you’re going in front of the press, do some practice interviews. Video them for future reference, warts and all. Then sling them onto YouTube. [I know someone who does that with his media training sessions. And no, it’s not me!]

10. Cursebird.com, dedicated to seeing who’s swearing the most on Twitter, is a challenge to which everyone should devote their lunch break. Always mention the company name.

There, just ignore that lot and it’ll be a start.

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March 23, 2009 Posted by | Social media howlers | , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

If you want to use social media for business you must read this

This is probably the best blog entry ever from anyone. Basically the ‘Blogess’, and God preserve her whoever and wherever she is, had a pitch from a salesperson who clearly hadn’t read her blog. She replied sarcastically and they replied offering to send her a free sample of their product and…and it all goes downhill from there. Keep reading. It’s an object lesson in how not to use social media but it’s bloody funny all the same.

Reminds me of a book that came out in the 1990s called The Spam Letters in which author Jonathan Land takes the trouble to respond to every get-rich-quick, make-your-boobs-or-willy-larger merchant who wastes their time approaching him, and good grief they actually write back.

This is funnier, though, because she doesn’t even make a pretence of taking this dork seriously. It is glorious.

March 20, 2009 Posted by | Social media howlers | Leave a comment

Bad timing, bad use

And this, my friends, is how you don’t do social media – the Sun newspaper in the UK has grabbed the name ‘Natasha Richardson’ as a pay-per-click link. I’ll leave it to the Countervalue Blog to tell you about that. But this isn’t one of those days on which I’m particularly proud to be a journalist.

March 19, 2009 Posted by | Social media howlers | Leave a comment

When social media goes wrong

A great post from Jeremiah Owyang of Forrester Research outlines what can happen if your social media strategy goes wrong. He’s criticised by one commentator because he’s too uncritical, which is another element of what can go wrong on a blog – clearly, to me, he’s expressing an opinion and yes, it’s a positive one about the agencies that can set your strategy right if there’s a problem. Personally I think that’s a fair view to take.

Of course, better to get it right in the first place and that’s what I’m going to put into my book, which I’m starting to write on Monday. Which is a little scary, but there you are!

I’ll let you know how I get on.

March 14, 2009 Posted by | Social media howlers | Leave a comment

Newspapers not getting it

The thing about social media – indeed, the thing about the Internet overall – is that it gives you the chance to share, to link, to let people know what others are saying.

So I can share this link from a journalism blog and alert any readers who might be interested in its content. What I can’t do, apparently, is link to newspapers, which is a shame because I do so elsewhere on my main website. The papers, as you’ll see from the article, aren’t happy with people linking to their sites.

Presumably they like driving readers away. And having not only blogs but Tweets on Twitter highlighting that they really, really don’t get this stuff.

March 12, 2009 Posted by | Social media howlers | 1 Comment