Facebook’s Growing PR Crisis

Facebook’s announcement Wednesday and others last week reflect a major shift in the company’s relationship with third-party apps. In the past, developers could get access to people’s relationship status, calendar events, private Facebook posts and much more data that was highly valuable to advertisers, including political campaigns. Now they will be required to go through … Continue reading Facebook’s Growing PR Crisis

The dangers of thinking “They’ll get it because they’re young”

So very true despite the stereotypes (spoken as a former college / high school / middle school teacher turned tech consultant). Parents have a big burden to bear in helping their young and old children make wise decisions about how and why to use the web. Just assuming “they’ll get it because they’re young” is … Continue reading The dangers of thinking “They’ll get it because they’re young”

Paying for everything you do

What about the users? Advertising isn’t why Mark Zuckerberg started Facebook or, presumably, what gets him out of bed in the morning. Engineers and designers whose identities are invested in changing the world don’t want that work tarnished by association. But the decision to pay for everything Facebook does by selling advertising means–whether he likes … Continue reading Paying for everything you do

Surveillance Capitalism

Surveillance capitalism is deeply embedded in our increasingly computerized society, and if the extent of it came to light there would be broad demands for limits and regulation. But because this industry can largely operate in secret, only occasionally exposed after a data breach or investigative report, we remain mostly ignorant of its reach. Bruce … Continue reading Surveillance Capitalism

Data Panic

I’ve been following Curran’s tweets and posts and press blitz the last couple of days, and I have to say that I’m not a fan of his scare tactics and frequent plugs for people to donate to his Patreon so that he can continue his “work”. Yes, your data should be intensely personal and used … Continue reading Data Panic

Large implications as Facebook shuts down Partner Categories

This is significant. Many large companies (Fortune 100 type) have their own data sets on customers and potential customers and audiences they’d like to target. They’ve been able to combine that data with Facebook’s or Twitter’s own user data in incredibly effective (and cheap!) marketing campaigns tied to email newsletters and website promotions. None of … Continue reading Large implications as Facebook shuts down Partner Categories

If you automate tweets for marketing purposes, you might want to read this

Back in January, Twitter announced upcoming changes to its service that would discourage use of automation tools for “amplification” of tweets. Now we’re beginning to see the effects of this change. One of the great things about using Twitter for marketing is the relative ease of “amping” up tweets and causing increased “velocity” which signals to … Continue reading If you automate tweets for marketing purposes, you might want to read this

Churches and nonprofits should realize that Facebook privacy issues are just the tip of the iceberg

Way back in 2012, I was featured in a New York Times article titled “How To Muddy Your Tracks on the Internet” and offered up this bit as part of my interview (I was teaching Middle School Science at the time): “The topic of privacy policies and what lies ahead for our digital footprints is … Continue reading Churches and nonprofits should realize that Facebook privacy issues are just the tip of the iceberg

Podcast on Church Marketing

Thomas and I recorded a new episode of Thinking Religion last night that covers many of my thoughts about how churches and nonprofits use (and should use) social media, email services, web apps etc in their marketing efforts. My basic point is that “social” media is reaching the same point that “broadcast” media did years … Continue reading Podcast on Church Marketing

Reaping Data

Not to mention how companies and governments so haphazardly use this data for causes and purposes… The unchecked power of companies that harvest our data is a great problem—but it’s hard to get angry about an idea that’s so nebulous. Like climate change, the reaping of our data is a problem of psychology as much … Continue reading Reaping Data

What Facebook knows about you and me and what I can do about it

Cambridge Analytica harvested personal information from a huge swath of the electorate to develop techniques that were later used in the Trump campaign. Source: How Trump Consultants Exploited the Facebook Data of Millions – The New York Times I often have consultations with clients involving data sources. Marketing has always been closely tied to the … Continue reading What Facebook knows about you and me and what I can do about it

How should we regulate Facebook and Google’s advertising platforms?

So how does Facebook’s ad system work? Well, just like Google, it’s accessed through a self-service platform that lets you target your audiences using Facebook data. And because Facebook knows an awful lot about its users, you can target those users with astounding precision. You want women, 30–34, with two kids who live in the … Continue reading How should we regulate Facebook and Google’s advertising platforms?

Last Night on Earth

I’m an only child. I realized rather early in life that being an only child and one of the few kids in our rather small family would have an impact on a number of aspects of my life from playing sports to how I held my shoulders at school. I was consciously aware of myself rather early … Continue reading Last Night on Earth