Tag Archives: New Social Media

Be Careful What You Click (or you just might get it)

28 Sep

The dangers of clicking before thinking have reached a whole new level during the recent years. Before, we needed to be careful with what we were clicking because:

  1. We could be led to a site we didn’t want to view like a porn site. Or,
  2. Viruses could enter our computers’ systems which would eventually make the whole system crash.

But now, due to the use and popularity of social networking sites (SNS) we need to think before we click because we could be leaking personal information about ourselves to total strangers.

I will use Facebook-related matters as my example.

The “liking” phenomenon

There was a period in Facebook where fanpages suddenly got popular. People kept clicking the “like” option when they saw a fanpage name that they agreed too. Some examples are: 5 minutes of sleep really DOES matter, Drunkenness reveals what soberness conceals, Guys who still open doors for girls and many more! There were also legitimate fanpages of products and institutions such as Krispe Kreme, McDonalds, Sanuk Philippines and many more.

It was pretty tempting I tell ‘ya. I confess that I did get into the liking mania which is why I have 635 likes in Facebook.

I have to admit though, I should’ve thought about what I “liked” more carefully. Why? After “liking” all those fanpages, all that I saw in my feed was tons of nonsensical content that were totally unrelated to the fanpages that were posting them. What’s worse, at times I would get tagged in vulgar or disgusting pictures which of course became visible in my Facebook wall.

Application after application

There was also a time when the use of applications were at a peak. Suddenly everyone was using applications that predicted their future using Tarot cards or applications that gave quotes for the day or even applications that told you who your secret admirer was. There were many pretty interesting ones, like quizzes that would tell you what your personality type is or what your birthday month says about you.

Do not copy me. Now I have to remove these 100+ apps one by one. Think before you click!

And of course, I also got into the spirit of that, and tried many apps. But, there was a catch. Many applications, especially the more recent ones, request permission to access your whole account such as pictures, videos, status updates, etc. I’m sure many of us are guilty of just clicking “yes” because we’re excited about the results, but we should be more wary of giving permission to access our accounts.

Different organizations are using what they pull from our accounts for their market research. But, do we really want strangers to have access to our photo albums, videos, notes, and the like? I personally don’t.

Manage and think

It has been established that we should think before we click on anything on the internet. But, more that we should inform ourselves about privacy settings and how to manage the applications (if any) on the different social networking sites that we use.

In Facebook, applications can be managed by simply going to the application settings under the account tab in your page. From there you can manage which applications you really want to allow access to your information. All it takes is time and patience, especially if you’ve gone through a clicking-frenzy stage (like me).

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Hashtags 101

25 Sep

In a previous post about Twitter, I mentioned about hashtags. Surprisingly, many of the people I know who use twitter still don’t know about hashtags. That’s why I decided to make a post about it.

What are hashtags?

Hashtags are the words or acronyms with the # symbol in front of them. Twitter support defines this as tags similar to web tags. It adds tweets to categories and makes it easier for people to look for tweets of similar categories. The name hashtags comes from the use of the hash or pound symbol in the start of the tags.

Community creation

More than categorizing tweets, hashtags were developed as a means to create groupings or communities in Twitter without having to change the basic service or system. The hashtags feature is not an official feature that Twitter offers, but due to its popularity, hashtags appear on Twitter search.

Using hashtags

When you use hashtags, and you have a public account, any individual who searches for a certain hashtag may see your tweet. In essence, any word with a # symbol in front of it becomes a hashtag, but there are commonly used hashtags that you may wish to use.

You may want to check out Hashtags.org for popular hashtag activities.

Some advice on etiquette

Since hastags are relatively new, there are no formal rules on its use or etiquette surrounding it.

A good rule of thumb to follow though would be to actually focus on the content of your tweet rather than the tags you can add to it. As with anything, too much is bad, and overuse of tags may cause irritation for others.

SNS = SHOPPING Networking Sites

25 Sep

It was during the peak of Multiply.com when different online shops kept popping out here and there. Business-minded students/undergraduates, those who wanted a sideline, or individuals who wanted to jumpstart their business all flocked to Multiply. Many of them have established their business in that site, and still use it to this very day.

And, when Facebook became popular, we saw how the online reselling trend followed.

Free, Fast, Easy

Free, fast and easy – these are the main reasons why online resellers choose to use Social Networking sites like Facebook to house their online stores.

There’s already a community of people, and all you have to do is add contacts. You may post pictures of your products in the photos part of your account. And, interested buyers may choose to send you a private message or leave comments in your gallery. You may also wish to put guidelines about how to order, where you accept meet-ups, shipping details, etc. in your notes page.

Doubtful clients can also see if you’ve already had successful transactions. This will show them that you are a legitimate reseller, and not just one of those con-artists.

Online shopping on SNS: a yes or no?

Personally, I’m not against online shopping. I even have several online store contacts, and enjoy “online window shopping” when I’m bored. I think it’s good that people are using different means to make their business successful.

Not everyone is happy about this phenomenon though. Some are irritated because store contacts keep tagging you in pictures of products, or sometimes the store contacts spam your feed, and you miss the posts of your friends or crushes. This can be solved pretty easily though. Facebook allows you to hide posts of contacts you don’t want to see. So if you like a certain shop’s products, you can just go to that shops page when you want, but you don’t have to see that shop’s post in your feed.

I think that Facebook is still relatively young. What happened with Multiply was that they chose to adopt the shopping phenomenon into their system, and so they created a shopping community in their scheme. I’m curious as to what Facebook plans to do about the online reselling accounts that seem to be multiplying as the days pass. Maybe a new e-bay can be created out of all that’s happening. Definitely though, we will see more and more uses for these social networking sites.

8 Reasons Why I Like Twitter

25 Sep

It was only fairly recently that I decided to create a Twitter account. Before, I really didn’t feel the need to get into the whole Twitter craze. I didn’t understand how something so simple could be so addicting for many people.

It took a several classes in our Communications and Trends classes, a couple of testimonials from close friends, and some communication blogs to convince me to at least give Twitter a shot. And, here I am! Not a total addict, mind you. But, I do get the strict need to tweet every now and then.

One of my friends asked me why I was so gung-ho about Twitter. I couldn’t answer him coherently, so I decided to list down my reasons for liking Twitter in the hopes that he’ll give it a shot too.

1: Simplistic

I find it to be one if not the most simple SNS out there. The appearance of your profile is easy to tweak. It’s just 140 characters every time. You can choose to follow whoever you wish with just the click of a button. And when fed up with someone, you can also “unfollow” someone that easily. You can post links to vids, pics and articles without unnecessary graphics or add-ons.

2. It is public yet private at the same time.

Since Twitter is microblogging at it’s best, you post things that you want people to know about yourself. It’s public in that sense. But unlike other Social Networking or Microblogging sites, in Twitter it’s more private due to the fact that you can choose to protect your tweets, and you can have control over who can follow you.

In addition, I personally feel that when I post things in Twitter, I’m better heard than in Facebook. This was actually the main reason why I decided to create a Twitter account. In Twitter I feel free to express myself whether I’m feeling emo, happy, sad, angry or what.

3. Fast

Comments, replies and retweets are fast. You immediately see in your page if someone has replied to a post. It’s also that easy to retweet something that you think is great or something that your contacts should know. You may also send messages to celebrities, and see for yourself if they respond.

4. I’m more updated with the news.

Honestly speaking, I am a bit apathetic when it comes to current events. I don’t read the newspaper or watch the news that often. But with Twitter, I can choose to follow News Organizations like Inquirer, GMA-News and even CNN. With their tweets I get to know the latest news in the Philippines as well as in other parts of the world. And, if I’m curious enough, I can read the whole articles by simply clicking on the links provided in the tweets.

More than current events, I can also be updated with news about my favorite TV shows/series. Most series have their own Twitter where they post new season announcements, special events, and sometimes even sneak peeks of upcoming episodes.

5. The 140 characters limit.

The 140 characters limit makes me think more. It might sound weird but I find that the character limit trains me to say what I want to say in a concise yet profound way. I often tell my friends that it feels like I’m producing a copy for an ad when I post in Twitter.

6. Trends

Twitter allows you to use hashtags. Hashtags are those things that you see with the # sign before them. These tags allow people to track tweets about different topics on twitter. When a certain hashtag is being used a lot, and at regular times, it becomes a trend. You may choose to participate by posting tweets related to the trends, and see what others have to say.

My favorite trend is the #sentisabado trend. It’s a Filipino trend that other countries have begun following. Sentisabado happens every Saturday, and there is usually a theme in what to feel sentimental about. The theme can be childhood treats or fiesta foods or first love.


7. Quotable quotes from interesting people.

There are so many interesting people to follow on Twitter. You can choose to follow quirky or eccentric local stars, or even comedy cartoon characters like Homer Simpson. I like Twitter because you get to see other peoples’ opinions about anything and everything. It’s more fun when you can relate to a statement. You find “quotable quotes” which you can choose to retweet, or use in your other SNS or even statements that you want to make your new life motto or mantra for the week.

8. Therapeutic

Whatever emotion I’m feeling, I can let it out on Twitter. When the feeling is negative, it’s great to share that to other people. When the emotion is negative such as stress or sadness or anger, I feel that Twitter gives me that feeling of Catharsis or purging. Plus, my friends sometimes make me feel better on Twitter which cheers me up.

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All in all, Twitter is great! I think I’d be tweeting for a long time.

So Stumble if you’re bored.

24 Sep

The term to “stumble” or “stumbling” is not anymore limited to the act of tripping and almost falling. It is now an online jargon, a term which describes the act of jumping from one randomly generated site to another based on topic preferences that you have pre-selected.

The term stumbling comes from the name of a discovery engine named StumbleUpon. The application is free to download. You just have to register at their site. No payments needed, just your e-mail to verify that you are an existing person. You can choose to stumble via the website but I find that downloading the application toolbar is a whole lot better.

The application toolbar allows you to stumble through sites with just a click of a button. It also gives you easy access to your favorites, and even gives you the option to share it in your social networking sites.

How it works

Log in to your StumbleUpon account. In there you can choose which topics interest you. There’s a wide variety of categories and topics to choose from such as Arts/History, Commerce, Computers, Health, Hobbies, Media, Food/Cooking, Humor, Internet, Puzzles, Beer, Cats, and many more I tell you. Just tick on the box that corresponds to your topics of interest and then save your preferences.

And then when you finally decide to stumble, the discovery engine will take you to sites related to your preferences. You can keep on stumbling and stumbling until you find sites that interest you. Plus, depending on your mood, you can change your interests any time you wish.

You can choose topics that interest you, and manage your preferences.

I personally like to cook and do crafts and such, so when I stumble I usually end up in craft forums, tutorial pages or in food blogs. It was thanks to stumble that I found a new hobby — reading through food blogs!

The fun of it

What makes this so great is that it feels like the internet universe is so big yet small at the same time. You realize that there’s so much in the web that you haven’t explored yet. Through stumbling I’ve seen travel blogs of people from different backgrounds and cultures. I’ve seen photo diaries of people with different perspectives in life. I’ve seen the “humor” of other countries, like what’s funny to them and what’s not. And, thanks to discovery engines such as StumbleUpon, we have the means to reaching the before “unreachable” parts of the internet universe. It’s an eye opener, really. It makes you appreciate the many different points of views out there, and makes you rethink about your own.

Another great thing about this is the aspect of SHARING. When you rate sites that you enjoyed, you’re increasing the probability of that site to be known by other people. And, if you “like” a site that hasn’t been bookmarked before, that can be your contribution to StumbleUpon and to the other users. It’s also a way to get local sites or local blogs to get known by other people from different parts of the world. People can visit your favorites and find them there.

Other users can visit your page on StumbleUpon and view your favorites.

People who like your bookmarks may choose to follow you, and you can also choose to follow people with interesting favorites.

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So you see friends, boring doesn’t have to be unproductive. In fact, surfing doesn’t have to be boring at all! With discovery engines such as StumbleUpon, you can hop from different sites all catered to your interests. You can learn something new with just a click of a button.

There are also other discovery engines, but I like the simplicity of StumbleUpon’s system as well as the interface of the site and toolbar. Other discovery engines you may want to try are SpinSnap, Yoono and Fichey. Note though that the other discovery engines have different interfaces, and work differently compared to StumbleUpon.

E-burol: A way to view your relative’s wake online

5 Jul

Yes this is real

I swear that when my boyfriend showed me this picture I told him it was edited. I thought that surely it was just some person’s witty idea of expressing how everything seems to be available online these days. I was wrong. This “E-burol” service does indeed exist.

St. Peter’s is offering this E-burol service for the relatives and friends who cannot go to the wake of their deceased. This service will allow them to view the wake online via the St. Peter’s website. As privacy is indeed very important, only select people (real relatives and friends) will be given the details on how to access the service. For more details you can check here. You can even download their “manual” that has step by step instructions on how you can use their service.

So what does this unique and revolutionary service show us? What implications does this kind of service have on our lives? Why should we care?

Everything is going digital.

It may not be the case now but we’re definitely going there. Discovering this E-burol service made me see that even more. We are now living in a digital age where we can talk to people who are halfway across the world. All in real time. We can now share photos, videos, news and opinions with just a few clicks here and there.

Business people are now looking at how they can use the internet and social media to their advantage. E-burol is most likely a product of the same line of thought. The owners of St. Peter’s must have seen and heard many of their customers talking about relatives who could not make it to wakes because of the burdens of traveling, whether it be from abroad or from a relatively far place here in our country. They saw the clients’ needs, saw that no other funeral services offered it, and since the technology needed for this project was available E-burol was created. I find this project simple yet effective because of it’s practicality and effort to bring people closer during vital times.

Adapt to survive.

Humankind is facing another big change, and that is of the digital change. With the advent of technology, we are discovering new ways to do things everyday. During this time, we must not let ourselves get left behind. I recognize the importance of valuing and preserving the traditional way of doing things, but we must not close our minds to the possibilities that technology will bring. It is inevitable that technology will be a huge part in our way of living in the near future (more than it is now). And, instead of fighting the inevitable we must learn to adapt to these changes.

Being a part of the Net generation, we can develop this adaptive nature by frequently updating ourselves about the new technologies in the market. There are tons of articles available online about anything you can possibly ask for about the internet, social media, online trends, and many more. Reading up regularly and testing out the things that we read about will keep us in the loop of this digital age development. We can also help our parents (and even grandparents) by explaining the things that we know, and teaching them the basics in using certain technologies.

As a future professional…

On a personal note, this E-burol means to me that as a future professional I should not be too dependent on what I learn in school. The University will only provide me with a good foundation, but after graduation my environment will be my teacher. I must make an effort to listen and to observe the environment that I will be in (office, community, etc.). I should also learn how to distinguish which new knowledge will be beneficial to me. I will surely not be one to “jump the gun” as they may say.

I certainly look forward to many new “surprises” such as this. Personally, I am determined to keep an open mind about new technologies and new services.

I end this post with my last thought, maybe you have thoughts on this (I’m sure many of you do): “Kelan kaya maiimbento ang E-numan?”


Why YouTube is the shiznit!

27 Jun

YouTube is the brainchild of three Paypal dudes (Chad Hurley, Steve Chen, and Jawed Karim) who wanted to create a new kind of dating site that classified people based on their videos. The domain was activated June 15, 2005 and the first video was uploaded on April 23. Pretty soon the original idea of a dating site was lost, and YouTube became a video sharing site. It started gaining popularity with the general populace due to links being shared on social networking sites like MySpace, and several companies also started seeing its promotional potential.

Now, five years after its first launch, YouTube is one of the top known and visited sites all over the world. As you are reading this article, thousands of videos are being uploaded. In fact, according to statistics, an average person spends 15 minutes a day on YouTube. I am a living testament to that finding. I check my YouTube account whenever I go online just to check if there are new videos to watch. YouTube has made my life more interesting in many ways.

I can watch shows online.

As much as I want to download shows that I want to watch, the storage space in my computer won’t allow for it. Thanks to YouTube however, I can watch shows through online streaming.

I can watch a lot of things from live action series (English, Pinoy, Japanese or Korean) to cartoons/anime. I can even watch old tv commercials that bring me back to my elementary days. This tvc is one of my favorites. I remember doing the coke beat with my classmates in a sort of competition. The loser will treat the winner to ice cream or even a full lunch meal. Ah, good times, good times.

Mulling over music.

When it comes to music, I use YouTube to check out new or recommended songs. It saves me the effort and time of searching, downloading, and then deleting a song file when it doesn’t really suit my tastes. Another thing that YouTube helps me with is memorizing the lyrics to favorite songs. No matter what the language your favorite song is in, you can find videos online with lyrics that you can sing along to then play over and over again until you’ve memorized everything.

Almost Easy by Avenged Sevenfold (one of my fav songs)

YouTube is also the place to view music videos. I am a fan of Kpop so I watch vids of Super Junior, 2PM, SNSD and many more. I even try to dance along sometimes (emphasis on the word “try” — I am not a dancer so I usually do this in the wee hours of the night or when no one’s around).

New Kpop song Huh by 4Minute

Education online

Yes, we can get educated on YouTube. There are many information-rich videos available that can educate internet users from all generations. There are educational clips for children, viral videos that increase our awareness of environmental and societal issues, and even instructional vids on how to make crafts, sew, cook, and many more. As funny as it may sound there are even videos that give out advice on relationships, and yes even what people in relationships do (if you know what I mean).

 Foodtrip28’s recipes I can learn how to prepare simple meals without buying a cookbook or bothering anyone to teach me.

YouTube has definitely made my life less dull. From shows to music and even educational stuff, I have access to all of these, and all for FREE. I can watch funny vids if I feel sad or just stressed. I can listen to my favorite songs, and even memorize the lyrics to the songs. I can do the things that make me happy. Most of all, I like YouTube because it gave us the opportunity to share the feeling of happiness with friends, relatives and loved ones. When I enjoy certain videos, I can show them to friends by posting it on my SNS or directly sharing the link through YM.

Today, YouTube is not the only video sharing site online. We have Veoh, Dailymotion, Vimeo and many more, but YouTube will always hold that reputation in being the pioneer in revolutionizing how people share videos online. How about you? Do you have more reasons why you love YouTube? Or maybe you hate it? Feel free to tell me. I would love to know about it.