This is my presentation for the Thursday, May 14 webinar sponsored by BDI.
SMUG has been observing our Christmas recess (although newer SMUGgles are certainly welcome to explore some of the existing curriculum) as the Chancellor’s family has been celebrating our Savior’s birth. The regular curriculum development will resume Monday.
We’re about to begin Day 3 of our Christmas gatherings, with Lisa’s side of the family joining us here at Old Main. Last night we were at my parents’ place with the Aase clan, and on Christmas night we had our six kids, our “adopted” son Jeff, and our granddaughter, Evelyn here to open presents. Here’s a picture of Evie and her Grandma Aase:
Evie’s Dad, my son-in-law Kyle, deserves a special mention, for many reasons. We’re glad he’s been brought into Rachel’s life (and therefore ours), and that he will be starting seminary classes next month. For SMUGgles, this relationship between Kyle and Rachel is an illustration of the power of social media, as they met through Facebook. So in some sense, Evelyn is here today because Mark Zuckerberg decided to start a social networking platform.
Kyle inadvertently demonstrated the power of another tool in social media, the Flip video camera, on Christmas night as Rachel unwrapped a gift — a Little Mermaid songbook — from her sister, Rebekah:
As I’ve said previously, one of the main benefits of the Flip is that you can always have it with you, and so therefore you are much less likely to miss capturing that priceless memory.
This is Exhibit A!
This video may yet make its way to Facebook, where Kyle can be tagged so that all of his 926 friends can see his musical expression. Somehow, I think Kyle’s brothers and sisters-in-law will take care of that. In the last couple of weeks, I’ve uploaded some video highlights of their youth directly to Facebook so their friends can see them. And because Facebook now defaults to sharing video with everyone (although it lets you limit who sees them), I think you SMUGgles can see them too (and I’d be interested in having you confirm in the comments below.)
Here’s Ruthie giving her newborn brother Joe “a swoppy kiss.”
And here are Ruthie and Bekah (but mostly Bekah) singing one Sunday morning before church.
It’s time now to go make and capture some more memories, as the Wacholz clan is about to arrive.
Merry Christmas to all of you from all of us!
Facebook‘s video player isn’t as popular as its photo sharing application (which is the most popular photo sharing site in the world), but it’s a great way to share video with a defined group of people.
In YouTube, you have the choice of sharing either with the whole world or with a group of up to 25 of your YouTube friends. There’s really no intermediate option.
In Facebook you can make the sharing much more widespread without sharing with the world. And you can “tag” your video with the names of your Facebook friends who are featured, which makes it likely that they and their friends will see it, because it will show up in their news feeds.
It’s also possible to share videos just with members of a group, whether its members are all friends of yours or not. So, for example, I uploaded some videos of my daughter’s volleyball team to a group I had created as an on-line “booster” club.
Here’s a video screencast for Facebook 109, demonstrating how you can upload a video to your personal Facebook profile:
Advantages of Facebook for Video Sharing:
- If Facebook users see and like your video, it’s really easy for them to share it with their Facebook friends (assuming you’ve allowed either Everyone or Friends of Friends to have access).
- As mentioned above (and as demonstrated in the screencast) you can limit who can see your video much more precisely. For example, you could customize the sharing so only friends can see, except those who are on your “Work Friends” list.
- Given Facebook’s popularity for photo sharing, it’s nice to be able to share both photos and videos on the same site.
- Users can comment on your videos, but they use their real names instead of relatively anonymous YouTube user IDs. This makes it more likely those commenting will behave themselves, and will reduce the potential crudity factor.
- The quality of the player is really good, especially with the new H.264 encoding.
Some disadvantages of using Facebook instead of YouTube:
- You can’t embed the Facebook player in your blog. People can only see the video on Facebook. This makes your content less portable. For instance, the screencast above was uploaded to my YouTube account and then embedded here. You could embed it in your blog if you’d like.
- You don’t get traffic figures on how many people are watching your video.
- People who aren’t in Facebook can’t see your video (at least I think not). If you don’t have a Facebook profile, please click this link and let us know in the comments whether you could see the video I uploaded during the tutorial. So if you want to share a video and don’t particularly care who sees it (and want it to be seen as widely as possible), YouTube is your best choice.
It isn’t, of course, an either/or proposition. You can upload videos to both YouTube and Facebook, but that’s double the work, double the upload time. An alternative is to upload your videos to YouTube, and then post the link to your video on your Facebook profile, page or group.
- Create a video file. If you need help in how to create a video file, check out these posts about the Flip.
- Upload the file to the SMUG group in Facebook.
- Share the video link with some Facebook friends (as you saw in the screencast), or post it to your Facebook profile.
I’m serving on a panel to close the Ragan conference hosted by SAS in Cary, NC. The goal is to give participants a list of actions they can immediately implement as practical steps when they return home to work.
I was asked to provide six suggestions, and the other four panelists also are responsible for a similar number. We get a minute to describe each idea, so I’m writing this post to provide links to mine. I’ll likely add links with some of the other panelists’ suggestions after I hear them.
I’ve also included more than six ideas because I don’t know what the others will be offering, and if we have duplicates I don’t want to be left without something valuable to recommend. Besides, I can’t limit myself to just a half dozen.
1. Get a Flip video camera. This is the only recommendation of my main six that costs anything. You can get a Flip today at Wal-Mart or Best Buy or some Target stores. The Flip provides miniDV quality video and is completely portable. You copy files to your computer via the built-in USB instead of having to digitize tapes. And you can have video uploaded to YouTube within minutes, as I did with the David Pogue musical parodies. The cost of buying a Flip is less than a quarter of the cost of hiring a professional videographer for a single day, and you can use the video you shoot to pitch stories to journalists. Even better, you can make the video available directly to consumers.
2. Become a SMUGgle. In the Harry Potter books, a muggle is an ordinary mortal without magical powers. A SMUGgle is also an ordinary mortal, but one who wants to accomplish really amazing feats using social media tools. You become a SMUGgle by enrolling in SMUG. This will be a gateway to your learning about lots of other social media tools you can apply to your work.
3. Try Yammer. Yammer is Twitter for the enterprise. It offers a way to take advantage of the functionality of Twitter, but to limit the participants to employees of your company. The big value is trying before buying, so you can see whether you get user adoption before you sink a lot of money into a tool that people may not use. It seems to have potential for powerful collaboration, allowing coworkers to opt-in for e-mails about subjects they find interesting, and also can serve as a massive General Reference database of facts, links and other information employees have found helpful. I did a Yammer 101 course and expect to be doing more on SMUG.
4. Start a WordPress.com blog. It’s free and you can do it in 5 minutes or less, as my Dad did. If you’re a coward, you can make it a private blog invisible to anyone except users you invite. Then just invite your communications colleagues to have access. Getting this hands-on experience will show you how easy it is to publish content to the world. You also could use WordPress.com to publish your Web site, having it serve as your content management system. The SMUG blogging curriculum will help you learn.
5. Create your own free personal podcast. The SMUG Podcasting curriculum takes you from the very basics to having a podcast listed in iTunes. When you’re familiar with the process, you will have complete confidence to recommend doing podcasts for your organization with higher production values, better microphones, etc. The mystery will be eliminated.
- Build your own on-line newsroom. See our Mayo Clinic News Blog for an example.
- Get a YouTube account. If you’ve only watched YouTube videos, you haven’t understood full potential. And if you work for a nonprofit, starting a branded YouTube channel is a no-brainer – it’s free. A Flip camera makes it easy for you to produce and upload videos
- Get an iPhone. This is another one that’s not free, but professional communicators need to understand potential of phones and applications.
- Try Dropbox. Its main purpose to sync files across multiple computers, letting you store your precious documents and files “in the cloud” so you have safe backup. The neat feature, though, is that it is a way for you to have the equivalent of an FTP site without the annoying hassle of log ins and passwords. You get two GB of storage free, and the paid option is something like $50 a year for 50 GB.
- Read a good book. Here are three must-read books that will change the way you work and live, and you could perhaps read one by the end of the weekend.
- Rules to Break and Laws to Follow – Don Peppers and Martha Rogers. I haven’t reviewed this yet, but plan to do so soon. I have been listening to it through Audible.com. It’s an excellent book about how a focus on short-term results can’t be the only measure of business success, because you may be draining or harvesting customer equity, and therefore actually reducing the value of your business.
- Getting Things Done – David Allen. I have several related posts about the GTD subject matter.
- The Reason for God – Tim Keller
Updated: My fellow panelists are
- John Mims, Altyris
- Becky Graebe, SAS
- Bruce Johnson, Davis Wright Tremaine, LLP
- Mark Ragan, Ragan Communications. CEO@ragan.com
Here are some of their ideas:
- Becky – Embrace individual customization on the intranet. Let employees upload and display their own photos instead of the staff photos.
- Bruce – Look for Alliances. AP came from this concept. Use a similar approach to find like-minded sites with which you can share.
- John – Have interns start a blog. “Outsiders’ view from the inside.”
- Mark – use LInkedIn journalistically. Send out requests for quotes or sources.
- Becky – Don’t overlook interns. They understand these technologies naturally and can give you insights. SAS has a student intern site.
- Bruce – Anonymity is dead. Make identity work for you on the internet.
- Customize your name. There are 266 John Mims in the U.S. The guy to my left uses his middle initial to identify himself. Good thing Lee Aase is relatively rare.
- Mark – Sign up for Google Alerts on your name or your company.
- Becky – Google your stuff to see if it shows up. If not, use titles and tags to optimize your content.
- Bruce – Get blog aggregator/RSS reader.
- John says you should have your posts published on days when people are reading. Write on the weekends, but set them to post on the weekdays. Here’s how.
- Becky – Use blogs to come together during difficult times. UNC Chapel Hill with student body president being killed. Created a blog to share special memories. Print all the comments and share with the family.
- Bruce – Create a wiki approach to document creation. Bruce had a colleague create a wiki certiori petition in the 9th Circuit.
- John – Comment on other people’s blogs. Make meaningful comments which will get people to visit your blog.
- Mark – Try Blog Jamming. Spend 48 hours in intense blogging about a particular issue. Then have the blog go away.
- Becky -Hand over the reins for Web 2.0 video. SAS hands employees Flip cams. Let them duct tape to handlebars during bike to work day.
- Mark – Search for Bloggingheads on NY Times.
- Use RSS feeds for internal news, just as you do for external.
- Mark – Check out everyblock.com. Everything that has happened on your block. It’s in beta now in 6 cities. News at the block level.
- Bruce – Beware the privacy trolls that may require encryption through legislation that is being adopted in various states. This will slow down all of your on-line transactions on your Web site. So what can we do about it?
- Mark – If you’re an editor, use Bullfighter or mystery matador.
As I count it, that makes for 34 ideas including my two extra books, which means we exceeded our quota by 13.3 percent. And I know I didn’t get all of my fellow panelists’ ideas recorded. I hope you see some things here you can apply immediately in your work.
I’d also welcome any comments you have, or other ideas you’d like to share.
There’s a double meaning with that headline. YouTube is making progress by telling us how our uploads are making progress.
One of my pet peeves with YouTube had been its lack of a progress indicator. When uploading a video, I never knew how long it would take to complete an upload. I just got the spinning circle for a seemingly interminable time.
As of yesterday, I noticed what you see in the screen shot below: