The Grand Social Media Experiment. We learn by doing.

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Social Media Can Also Improve Relationships

Social networking (and other technological advances) has altered how we stay connected to friends, make purchases, network with colleagues, and find out what’s going on in the world. It has been known to destroy relationships by rekindling past flames, beginning covert affairs, replacing face-to-face intimacy with imaginary online closeness, revealing too much information, and cyber-stalking to ease or confirm jealousy.

Some things to remember that will help keep relationships running smoothly online (and offline) are:

  • Anyone involved in a committed adult relationship shouldn’t be afraid to be public about their status on Facebook or other social media sites.
  • Your partner should be your friend on social media sites. If you can’t see what each other shares publicly online, this could be a sign of impending trouble.
  • Reminisce only briefly with past loves. Anything any more than that could put distance between you and your significant other.
  • Never vent personal information online when you’re angry. In fact, never do it offline either. Give yourself time to assess the situation and address it without pointing blame.
  • Online content is permanent! Even if something posted is deleted (and forgotten), it isn’t really. Nothing ever permanently goes away, and you don’t want it to resurface when you least expect it.
  • Don’t over-share. A better way to learn about people is to have face-to-face conversations. Also, don’t publicize every little detail about your relationships and personal life online.

Often, social media does couples more harm than good. However, social media can also be a positive thing that fortifies bonds between partners. Social media is a great way to connect and encourage loved ones during the workday, or whenever they are away. Anytime you can stay connected and increase communication will benefit a relationship.

Here are some fun ways to stay connected and put a smile on that important someone’s face during times when you are apart. Use social media to:

  • Remember the good times by reminding them of a special moment you shared.
  • Express thankfulness for kindnesses they’ve shown you and for their friendship and love.
  • Make them laugh with a funny meme or other online content that you think they will enjoy.
  • Just say “Hello” or send a smile (emoticon).

A celebrity who does an awesome job of showing his wife how much she means to him and is an inspiration to us all is Aaron Paul of Breaking Bad. He just might be the most perfect husband ever, complimenting his wife Lauren Parsekian every chance he gets. Read about this very-much-in-love couple here: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/10/03/aaron-paul-wife_n_4032479.html. Awwwe!!

Remember—you have the power to build and maintain quality relationships. The golden rule, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you,” is excellent advice; it is as powerful now as it was c. 2000 BC, “Now this is the command: Do to the doer to cause that he do thus to you.” (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Golden_Rule)

What are you waiting for? Go reach out to your special someone!



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It’s never too late to start social media!









If you have not yet started social media you might be discouraged because you feel like you are way behind the current explosive social media trends. I will like to encourage you to not give up yet. Please note that it’s never too late and you are not alone.

I was very skeptical myself for a long time worrying about if I’m sharing too much or not knowing where to start. I would like to share some tips to help you.

Where and how do I start?

Starting social media could be scary or you might not just know what to do, like I didn’t. It’s ok to be a little scared because the social web is a huge space with lots of people from all over the world. Maybe your fear might subside if you know what to do. I would like to share with you how I overcame my fear through learning more about social media and how it can be used.


Facing the fear

It’s OK to be afraid but what anyone out there would tell you is that you have to face your fear to overcome it. And a way to do that is by learning about your fear; well that is exactly what I did.

Find a social media class: you would be surprised; there are a slew of classes out in your local community that is offered for free. You might find them at your local library or at other community organizations. But if there is nothing offered in your community don’t fret over it, you can search for anything you want to know about social media online for free too.

A few things I have learned about social media:

  1. Although social media is a social platform, you can still decide how social you want to be. Just like any social gathering, your level of interaction is up to you. You can choose what type of audience you want to attract and the kind of information you want to share with them.
  2. Once you have decided on an audience, you can now start putting things together to share with them. Try not to worry about your topic being discussed before on social media. You should concentrate on sharing something that can solve a current problem. A great way to figure out what your audience wants is to ask questions to jumpstart conversations. Knowing what your audiences want allows you give them great content.
  3. Images are really nice to share because people are attracted to visual things. Make it as large as you can, use screen shots and infographics.

Overall, plan and set the goals that you want to accomplish with social media because once you do, because it will help you understand what is needed of you. The actual crafting of the content will be a lot easier. Making a post go viral will get everybody’s attention in your niche and will put your blog, tweet, or post on the map.

algorithm strip

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Oh, those algorithms (Part I)

algorithm strip

Thanks to cartoonist Stephan Pastis for his wordplay — even on the days his comic strips make me groan.

Facebook’s constant tinkering with its algorithms has taken us back in time, not to Internet 1.0 but to intrusion marketing.

TV ads exemplify intrusion marketing since they intrude on your television show. The ads are the time you use to get something to eat, use the bathroom, retrieve something from another room, or channel surf. A marketer could segment its marketing during the Saturday morning cartoons, but not so much during prime time. The ads you did see would be from an advertiser intruding on your time with their message, whether you wanted it or not or whether or not you were in their target market, a potential customer..

In contrast, the internet brought us permission marketing, where you could give a company or organization permission to send you something that it wanted you to see. Ideally it was a one time thing, but often you got added to an email list and got regular emails, often too frequently.

Liking a page in Facebook gave the company or organization permission to provide information in your news feed.

In an article on Insidefacebook.com on August 15, 2014, Mary Long explained some of the changes:

So in the past few years, Facebook has begun to change and modify the way users see news and information in their feeds and organic reach suffered, naturally. Facebook unveiled an algorithm designed to help populate users’ News Feeds with topics and information relevant to their likes and interests.

The algorithm examined how a user interacted with the items on their newsfeed and extrapolated what similar items could be brought in to meet those interests. And while this all made sense for end users – it ticked off brands …

(My italics)

So now we have not real people hoping to reach the people who would be interested in a company or organization, but algorithms intruding without permission. The problem is it hasn’t “all made sense to end users” and they may not get “topics and information relevant to their likes and interests.”

The algorithms “examine” a user’s last 500 interactions. There are three problem with this “judgment” that algorithms won’t be able to “understand” and act on:

  • It may not be the subject matter that interests a user but a specific company at which a friend or relative works, in which they own or are contemplating buying stock, contributing or volunteering or which they wish to study or learn about. Users may be very contentedly lurking and not appreciate any changes.
  • It may be a question of time – how much interaction any user has with any item in her news feed depends on how much free time she has available and where her priorities lie at any given time.
  • It may be the level of interest; a user may be passionate about some interests and lukewarm on others, but may want to maintain the lukewarm interest for a time when that interest will be a higher priority.

Facebook may be putting itself out of business by using its algorithms to intrude on users’ news feeds rather than allowing each user to give permission as he or she sees fit.

Liz Lemon saying, "What the what the?"

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Reconnect, Connect and Follow Your Family Tree with Social Media

The thing about history, family history is that I didn’t care about the details until I got closer to the end of my life. As a child and early adult, I confess that I was truly self centered. All the stories pictures that my grandfather tried to shove down my throat annoying and got in the way of MY LIFE. Thank God for Social Media class. Now my children can have there history in one place one disc until they are mature enough to care.

Due to Social Media family history research today can be much easier. You might think of social networking as chatting with your friends online using Facebook, but social networks of all kinds can play a role in your genealogical research too.

Here are a few ways you might use social networking for family history research:

Reconnect with family members you have lost contact with. Your own family members are your best resource when you begin your family tree. Social networks give you a way to contact people quickly with questions even if you’ve lost touch and don’t have an address or phone number to reach them through.
Connect with others researching members of your family tree. Even Ancestry.com is a specialized form of social network. Using their social tools (or those of similar sites), chances are good that you can find other people researching ancestors you have in common. This can be a great way to find information on a more distant branch of your family tree or to get access to family records, such as photos, that your immediately family doesn’t have.
Follow your favorite family history resources. With social networks like Twitter you can follow genealogy websites and blogs of interest to you. This can be a good way to make sure you don’t miss announcements such as sales on access to family history databases or even free tools and downloads to help you keep your research organized.

I also found a few Apps that can be helpful also:

Ancestry – This app from Ancestry.com really isn’t that robust. It’s less about being able to do research on the road (I’d just use the full site for that), and more about carrying your Ancestry family tree with you to share with others. I find that useful because when I visit family out of town I often have new things to share in my tree. This lets me do that without lugging my laptop around everywhere I go.
Find Grave – This app gives you access to the FindAGrave database right on your mobile device. This is one of my favorite resources which I use before planning a family history trip. It helps you locate, identify, and preview grave sites of your ancestors.
MyHeritage – This app from MyHeritage.com is for members of the site. It gives you a little bit more functionality than the Ancestry app in that you can initiate searches right from the app in addition to tracking your tree.

Please let me know if you have any other tips or tricks for researching family history.


Once again Social Media make our world smaller!

Once again Social Media make our world smaller!

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Sloppy Joe’s and a Hero

As I tried to find a place to sit walked with my plate of sloppy Joe’s and baked beans I knew there was something famous about him. He was sitting alone at a corner table  my mind raced as I tried to place his name with a face. I sat down next to him, deciding to wing it and said, “Hi, aren’t you famous?” He smiled at my stupidity and began to tell me who he was.

After some research and two sloppy Joe’s at  a Work Fair/Feast for Indian month I discovered that Clyde Bellcourt  is a founder of the American Indian Movement. He was a major figure in the occupation of Wounded Knee in 1973 and played a founding role in an ongoing Indian School System, Legal Rights Center and the International Indian Treaty Council. He is also directing the Peacemaker Center for Indian youth and the AIM Patrol which provides security for the Minneapolis Indian community. I also discovered that at 78 years old  Mr. Bellecourt is active in Social Media and has a Facebook page, Wiki, and MySpace page. Maybe I should help him make a few Vines.

Clyde Bellecourt was born in 1939 on the White Earth Indian Reservation in Minnesota,  Bellecourt had problems in school and eventually dropped out. He was angry that Native Americans, if they were talked about in school at all, were usually described as killers or savages.  After quitting school and failing to find work, he became involved in crime and robberies and wound up in prison.

In prison in Minnesota, Bellecourt had given up hope. He decided to go on a hunger strike, figuring he would die. A fellow inmate brought him a book dealing with his Ojibwa history. Reading the book made Bellecourt proud once again to be a Native American and filled him with hope.

After his release from prison, Bellecourt and two others founded the American Indian Movement (AIM) in 1968 to educate even more people and to work for improved conditions and rights for Native Americans.I remembered my favorite Aunt Sandy talking about thepart that she played in the AIM movement.  The organization established job training, education programs and youth centers, forced the government to improve public housing for Indians, and set up schools such as the Heart of the Earth Center for American Indian Education in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The center focused on American Indian history and traditions.According to one of the articles I read Clyde sees a bright future: “This generation of little children is the 7th Generation. Not just Indian children but white, black, yellow and red Bellecourt remains active in trying to improve the lives of Native Americans, emphasizing the need for more and better education. Our grandfathers said the 7th generation would provide new spiritual leaders, medicine people, doctors, teachers and our great chiefs. There is a spiritual rebirth going on.” As one of the original founders of the American Indian Movement (AIM).

I finally remember where we had met I was his primary nurse at the hospital when he was first diagnosed with heart problems. Cylde now tells me he has a implanted heart monitor and defibrillator that keeps his heart happy.  I am happy for him,  78 years old and still fierce.




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What is the Alternative to Alternative Medicine?

More Eastern and Western medicine and  professionals than ever are using social media sites to widen the debate over which is the best. Social media makes worldwide debates and connections possible. This allows for hopefully a new open mindedness and productive, creative idea sharing. The use of crowdsourcing by medical specialists discussing challenging patient cases is growing. Facebook has over 1 billion monthly users. Twitter transmits over 400 million tweets every day.

The development of science is usually thought to have enhanced the quality of many things. However, in certain spheres of life, traditional methods are still being used; medicine is a good example of the co-existence of two approaches. Along with commonly recognized conventional medicine based on science and technology, there also exists so-called alternative medicine, which sometimes includes practices developed thousands of years ago. Each of them have proved its effectiveness.  Understanding their advantages and disadvantages is important to make an informed decision.

The first difference between these two systems is their approach to diagnosis. Conventional medicine focuses on the factors that cause the diseases and remedying their symptoms, separate from environment and personality.  Unlike alternative medicine that sees a body in balance with its environment and disease is thought to be caused by an imbalance between them.

Alternative medicine assumes that health is a life-long process; therefore, to sustain a healthy body condition a person should continually maintain proper nutrition, daily regimen, body care, mind exercises, and so on. Conventional medicine, while also taking these principles in consideration, still relies mostly on drugs and surgery. This makes it more effective for managing critical situations (or for so-called quick-fixes), but is less efficient in healing chronic diseases. In addition, it is extremely expensive.

On the other hand, alternative medicine is more affordable, it guarantees stronger and more stable results, but is also time-intensive, requiring a commitment to a healing process, and thus may not seem like a reasonable option for quickly healing a patient.

Unlike conventional medicine that relies entirely on chemically synthesized drugs, alternative medicine uses natural components such as herbs as remedying substances. Alternative medicine also uses ancient methods of dealing with diseases, such as acupuncture, massage, yoga, breathing techniques, meditation, and so on. Conventional medicine, in its turn, puts more trust in scientifically approved methods of diagnosing and treatment.

Alternative and conventional medicine have different approaches when it comes to understanding and curing diseases. Whereas conventional medicine often sees a disease as an independent and emphases a quick-fix.  Alternative medicine sees a body and its environment as a holistic system; a disease occurs in case of an imbalance between all of the system’s elements. Conventional medicine is more effective for treating critical situations and less suitable for managing chronic diseases. Alternative medicine yields gradual effects, but they are usually more steady and long-lasting, as they often involve the alteration of an individual’s lifestyle. Alternative medicine relies mostly on natural mechanisms and ancient techniques, whereas conventional medicine prefers chemical drugs and scientifically approved methods of diagnosis and treatment.

So the debate goes on and on and hopefully a coming together of the best of both worlds.


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How To Add Value and Help Your Organization With Social Media Postings

I believe the way to add value to social media  posting would be to include “you” in it. Think about what attracts you to your  favorite sites, links, post or people and grow from that position.

What does Value mean?

Define it!

There are a few definitions  but the two that stick out for me and relate to this context would be the following:

1. the regard that something is held to deserve; the importance, worth, or usefulness of something. or

2. consider (someone or something) to be important or beneficial; have a high opinion of.

As a  organization you will determine and define  how or what your values will look like, if you need help or have drawn a blank,take a look back to your mission statement  and evolve from that point.

Quick Tip:
How I remember what’s possible when I am going through transformation or embarking on a new journey, mission etc.. is that “Evolve” has the word  love in it.

Remember to add what “you”  love (passion aka your mission)

If you go from that point of view and set gentle reminders you cant help but to jump in and enjoy.