Joost! New Social Media Site

I don’t know how far the word has spread yet, but I’m really excited about joost, a new way to watch television… ONLINE! The only problem is, like gmail once was, subscription is by invite only. Unfortunately, I haven’t gotten an invite yet. And unlike gmail, I wasn’t able to sign up before the invite-only-period. But either way, I’m still excited!

Social Organism

So, this past week I have been trying to help my cousin make the move from San Diego (where I’m from) to Santa Barbara (where I live). I haven’t been on the job hunt for some time now, but I was reminded of the agony/intrigue of it this week as my cousin is on the hunt. The interesting thing to me is that, no matter where you are, or what your skill set is, there always seems to be a conversation with someone you know that starts off: “I know this guy…” Now, sometimes it’s just the necessary smoke that gets blown, but occasionally its that spark that ignites a beautiful opportunity. It was this thought that led me to consider the possibility, that no matter where you are, or what your circumstance is, we are all part of an organic, social culture. Whether it’s someone you know that hooks you up with a job, or 7 degrees of Kevin Bacon, we are all networked by nature. It is this aspect of our being that make certain aspects of being a web developer incredibly interesting. These past few weeks, Justin and I have had pretty extensive conversation regarding the whole aspect of ‘social media’. A site like Digg incorporates most all of the aspects of just being in relationship with people. Some things that come up are valuable and interesting. Some things are people who don’t know what they’re talking about, but get a lot of attention. And some things are people trying to exist in a place that they have no business being. The problem is, the latter two seem to be much more common than the former. As I expressed previously, it is this reason that has turned me off to the social media world. But I am beginning to see the value of sifting through all of the bs to get to the meat that is worth chewing.

I think we are all at a point where we are warmed up to the idea and concept behind social media, so let’s move forward now! I think it’s time to stop theorizing about it and start practicing. “Practice and preach, don’t Theorize and Teach” -Anonymous. We know what we like, and what we don’t. We all have ideas that would improve the current realm of social media, sooo… GO! If it’s truly social media that we’re talking about, there should be nothing preventing us from changing the way that this beast grows and flourishes. WE are the body, we belong to it, and we make up the very cells that cause it to exist. It is time to take ownership and make something wonderful. -kenny

Social Media Hype

So, for some time now I have had this sort of (and I know it’s cliché) love-hate relationship with aspects of the whole ‘social media’ world. On one hand, I absolutely love what sites like del.icio.us have done for me. A way to track what I like in an orderly, accessible manner, that is user friendly and sensible. On the other hand, I roll my eyes when I hear someone say “Did you see that site up on Digg?”. Up until now, my opinion of Digg has been that it is simply a Myspace for web geeks. It’s not that I haven’t used Digg, or Myspace for that matter, but when I do use them I keep it to myself. The same way I use del.icio.us to track sites for ME, not for everyone else to see. So now we come to this week. On Monday, my buddy and partner Justin Walton, wrote an article that received quite a lot of attention on Digg. Being as we talk via im constantly throughout the day, he informed me when it had received a few hundred diggs. We continued to watch the numbers climb through the morning until it hit about 1400 diggs, when our server crashed. After scrambling a bit to get it back up and running, we watched the article climb to be the #4 most popular article of the day across the board. It is currently at 2871 diggs! Since monday, we have been seeing the results of this article’s popularity. We had something like 54,000 unique hits on our server, 550 people subscribed via RSS to Justin’s blog, he gained over a hundred new links to his site, and will be appearing soon on Jason Calacanis’s podcast. Now, Justin and I are both benefitting greatly from this. As we are starting a business together, all of the hype and new traffic to our sites will pay out long term no doubt. And as search marketers, Justin and I are also very happy to have the increase in link traffic and publicity. So, as it turns out, my opinion of sites like Digg, is not so bad anymore. I can see the benefit that is offered to web developers and bloggers alike. Whether you are tying to make a point, or sell a product, this whole environment of social media turns out to benefit us all! -kenny