Five Ways in Which Social Media Worsens Our Behaviour

Social Media Meltdown

People are often quick to point a finger and sneer when a social media user lapses into a crazed meltdown. But have you ever considered why these cataclysms of raging temper and self-destruction always seem to play out on a site such as Twitter, and not on a site such as Flickr? What is it about classic social media that pushes us over the edge? Continue reading Five Ways in Which Social Media Worsens Our Behaviour

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Did Jesus Christ Change His Identity?

Cofton Church Sunset 1986

One of the fundamental spokes in the argument that Jesus Christ did not exist, is the total lack of evidence from his documented lifetime, and perhaps even more importantly, the period immediately after it.

The earliest surviving references to Jesus are approximately dated a good couple of decades after his supposed death. And one has to admit, the notion of a twenty year delay between an event, and the start of the viral buzz pertaining to it, is extremely difficult to assimilate in our modern world of instant worldwide communication. Continue reading Did Jesus Christ Change His Identity?

Reliable Ways To Cut Out Link Spam in a Twitter Search

Link Spam and Unwanted Advertising

As social sites have increasingly deployed cute algorithms to feed us what they want us to see (as opposed to what we actually asked for), it’s become almost essential for the serious reader to adopt a more proactive approach than the simple policy of ‘follow and wait’.

The online advertiser’s Holy Grail is to make us think we’re reading what we personally selected, whilst actually feeding us a substantial mix of ‘recommendations’ and ads. Some companies are better at this than others. Google does it best, keeping the consumer feeling free and unmanipulated. Twitter definitely does not yet have the art that conceals the art. If you let Twitter into the driving seat, it’ll probably take you to Hell. But if you seize the controls, you can get just as insightful an experience from Twitter as you can from Google. Twitter’s real user controls lie in its search capability. Continue reading Reliable Ways To Cut Out Link Spam in a Twitter Search

Will SmugMug Keep Flickr Free To Use?

Class 150 Diesel Train - Birmingham, 2000

It’s a testament to Yahoo!/Oath’s running of Flickr in recent times, that it took an official email notification of SmugMug’s new acquisition to remind me that Flickr still existed. For reasons I outlined in the recent Oath/Tumblr post, businesses such as Oath do not inspire great confidence in creative people. But unlike Oath, SmugMug is not a portal-wielding bait-baron obsessed with trite, populist news and cheesily-executed ad campaigns. It’s a photo-sharing business. So, has Flickr been saved? Continue reading Will SmugMug Keep Flickr Free To Use?

Has Oath Killed Tumblr?

Tumblr

When I received news from Yahoo! that in continuing to use its services, I would in fact be dealing with an organisation called ‘Oath’, I immediately feared for Tumblr’s welfare. I mean, what sort of brainstorming session results in a company name like ‘Oath’? Then I discovered that the new collective business also involved AOL, and thought: “Yep, that’s probably that for Tumblr”.

Yesterday, my fears were realised, as a peep at my Tumblr blog stats, in Google Analytics, showed a catastrophic drop in visits from search engines. There was a rise in referrals from Tumblr (you’ll see why in a moment), but overall, the page visits were significantly down. Continue reading Has Oath Killed Tumblr?

Online Intolerables: Men Trying To Look Cute

Men Trying To Look Cute

Have you ever wondered how many of the men who use a smile emoticon at the end of an electronic message were actually smiling when they typed it? If your guess falls somewhere below three percent, join the club.

There are a numerous things I find profoundly annoying on the social web. But the worst of the very worst of them, I would suggest, is men trying to look cute. Not inadvertently just being cute. I’m talking about men who deliberately try to look cute, in a bid to manipulate or self-serve. Before anyone accuses me of sexism, I know that women try to look cute on the Internet too, and I’m not saying I find that particularly attractive. Indeed, women who sing in a deliberately cute, babyish, contrived voice on Soundcloud make me want to cut the plug off my speakers. But there’s something about men trying to be cute that’s just… worse. Continue reading Online Intolerables: Men Trying To Look Cute

Multiple Twitter Accounts? Check ALL Your Important Mentions In One Click

Twitter Notifications

Now that Twitter has begun feeding irrelevant entries into the Notifications timeline, it’s become easier to miss important mentions. As someone with multiple Twitter accounts, I’d been meaning to collate all my important incoming mentions into a simple point of access for a while, but I’d never got round to it. Twitter’s new ‘notification spam’ gave me the nudge I needed, and the job is now done. In this post I’m going to show you how I did it. No third-party apps required. You don’t necessarily even need to log in. Continue reading Multiple Twitter Accounts? Check ALL Your Important Mentions In One Click