I Fail at Social Networking, and so do you…

The internet is a wonderful thing! A wealth of knowledge at our fingertips, and immediate access to our friends and family.  We live in an age where I know so much about my friends lives, that it is easy to spark up conversation if I actually ever meet up with them! This happens to me all the time, I bump into a friend in the grocery store, and ask them how the new car is, or how their trip to Thailand went, or that I liked the new pictures they posted of their perfect kids…

Facebook knows every little detail about you. Google might know things too, but your search history or email contents aren’t posted for all your friends and family to see. Wouldn’t that be embarrassing! lol

We offer up our lives inside our Facebook accounts.But it is not just Facebook. Snapchat, Twitter, Instagram, Reddit, Google+, Myspace(joking). But, have you ever noticed that our friends lives are soooo much more interesting and fun than our own. Facebook is kind of depressing for me most of the time. Everyone is posting how great their life is, how they just #boughtthebestthingever…, went on the #tripofalifetime. Again. Look at me!! My life rocks…

This video puts it all into perspective for you my friends…

Feel better? I know I did…

But the web we are all entangled in doesn’t stop with Facebook. The companies that run our favourite sites are fighting a battle for your attention, and in the end, your money. They are in the business of making money, and their sights are set on you…They excel at reminding you that you haven’t tweeted in a while, or that your buddies have been talking about all your favourite hobbies behind your back! You better click the link and get back in the game…

I’ve realized that I have a mutually balanced love and hate for my online life. I love ‘sort of’ keeping up to date with (or at least learning about) what my friends and family are up to. Why? Because I care about people in my life. But most of the time, I am simply too busy to include them in my hectic life. And, honestly with 4 young kids, I get that some of my friends might be ‘just too busy too’…

But, as time passes, I feel bad about being a hermit. What kind of friend am I really if I see people once a year or even less? I like hanging out with friends. I also enjoy shutting down my Facebook account all the time! Then realize that I am as hooked as everyone else with my online persona. However, I forget to use Twitter, realize that I haven’t blogged on here in a very long time, how much I love Reddit but forget about it, that my RSS reader is filling up with tons of cool stuff, that Google+ is neat but no one I know is really active there. I never “succeed” at any social website…

Look at me having fun...
Look at me having fun…

Then I ask myself, why didn’t I post about taking some time off of work, because I couldn’t cope with a tornado of crap that hit me all at once? #nervousbreakdown. That is life, isn’t it? But instead, I took pictures of me mountain biking, and joking that it was my therapist…It kinda was. And kinda is…

That is the key distinction for me. We go on these sites to feel better about our kind of normal, boring lives… I don’t think I’d go on Facebook if all I saw was how hard it was for my friends to pay their bills, that their marriage was on the rocks, that their kids were making them go insane, that they had just lost their jobs. We get that intimate with people in our lives, but not there… So, our online personas aren’t real. They aren’t. To get to know people, we need to accept that we are probably seeing them with rose-coloured glasses, and need to dig deeper. In person.

So, I accept that I fail at social networking , and I can only hope you do too…

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What RSS reader are you using now that Google Reader is dead?

I’m curious about what RSS reader my readers are using now that Google Reader is dead?

I’m finding Digg coming up with interesting content. A good mixture of Digg’s legacy of original content, along with an RSS reader.

For looks for me, it’s got to be Feedly! I almost forgot about it, until the other day I was looking through my Lastpass database and came across it. Logged in, then thought, “Wow, this is sure pretty!”.

What are you using?

Digg Reader is out in the wild!

digg_reader

A few months back Google put the Vulcan Death Grip to their ultra efficient RSS reader known as Google Reader. It was a very sad day for people like me that use an RSS reader to get my chosen world news, up to date podcasts, and any updates on blogs that I follow.

Luckily, there has been an enormous outcry to try and save Google Reader! No, it didn’t help Google change its mind (they promise to add something to Google+ in the future), but one thing that it did was enable all the small competitors to attempt to attract the forlorn GReader users…

They have all been scrambling to come up with the amount of features and streamlined focus that Google had. If you have followed any of this yourself, you’ll already know that sites like Feedly, Press, theoldreader.com, and many many more have been working on creating a permanent RSS alternative. A surprise entrant into the fold was the old site Digg.com.

Digg has been working frantically under an incredibly short time line to try and partially mimic, and partially integrate the Google Reader experience!

So, I was excited that today I finally got my invite to Digg.com/reader! Above is my initial screenshot once all my subscriptions were imported.

I was introduced to a start up screen after clicking my invite code, to an import screen to import my Google Reader subscriptions. I could tell that there are still many little tweaks to come, as my import seemed to hang-up for over an hour. I finally got fed up with patiently waiting to start messing around in there, so I did a page refresh, and I was up and running.

The interface is nice and clean! I really like the look so far. You currently have two choices to read through your feeds. You have List Mode (as above), or Expanded Mode. I always stick to list mode so that’ll do just fine for me thanks…

There are a few things I find lacking…Firstly, I like to sort my content by Oldest First. Currently the only choice is Newest First! I hate that! That means that I may just never get to old blog posts unless I hunt around in my individual RSS feeds. I’m pretty sure they will add this soon, as so many users have asked for it, that it shows up in the FAQs only one day in.

One thing I really hope they fix is that if you find some content you want to share with others on your chosen Social Network, you can only select between Twitter and Facebook. What about the ultra slick Google+????It was one of my favourite ways of sharing content on my Google+ profile. I really hope this gets added soon! Hell, I can share content on my own tiny blog through a link on my site straight to Google+. You’d think Digg would realize they are catering to a huge new Google Reader crowd and would have had that feature added right away!

Overall, I’m happy to see Digg enter the RSS Reader game! I can only see it improving from here. 🙂

 

Only months after blogging about how Google is banning images using a particular gesture (the middle finger), it turns out that the image of my wife on our wedding day is also too hot for Google to handle. I’ve repeatedly uploaded new versions of the same image as a kind of silent protest…

Here are a couple of shots of what I have come across. The first being that the image gets flagged by Google as it does not meet Google’s policies for safe sharing. Guns and violent imagery, lingerie photos, etc are fine on Google by the way.
Image_flagged

I requested a review as I thought that perhaps another Google+ user had flagged my image, and that Google would see the humour in the photo. They reviewed the image. Here’s what I got back…

Image_reviewed

You can see that not only did they reject my review, they have permanently disabled the photo from being shared with anyone.

This is ridiculous. There is a serious problem with our current state of social media. Facebook banning breastfeeding pictures, Google banning gestures, Twitter banning GIFs.

They are our moral police. George Orwell was a modern day prophet. 1984 is here.

pakos.me


I stumbled upon an article today about how some bloggers are getting their profiles pulled from Google+ over showing their middle fingers! Really?

I hate censorship. I really do. I truly believe that education is the answer to cure racism,  bigotry, gay bashing, etc…You breed more problems by banning images and conversation. Having said that, what the hell is wrong with flipping the bird? Nothing.

Techcrunch is making the case that people should first change their profile pics to a middle finger gesture. It was easy for me to do, as you may well be aware, I am proud to show off my beautiful bride in my header image. So I changed my Google+ profile too!

What do you think about social media companies banning and censoring content on their own services? There has been huge revolts on Facebook for banning breastfeeding pics. Who makes them…

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 Post on why I’m going to use Google+ as my primary blogging platform

Post on why I’m going to use Google+ as my primary blogging platform.

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Blogging Needs to be Easy. And Google+ makes it that way…

Over the years, I’ve had ebbs and flows of creativity and have ridden the waves of social media much like everyone else. In 2011 I signed up for the Post-a-Day Challenge and managed to do a blog post every day of the year. It was the most successful year for visitors I have had. But, alas, it was not sustainable… Continue reading “Blogging Needs to be Easy. And Google+ makes it that way…”

Cleaver use of a Smart PhoneI know most of the people on here have thought of this before, but th…

Cleaver use of a Smart Phone

I know most of the people on here have thought of this before, but the other day I went out on a hike with my family to a local park. They have a great map posted at the start of the walk. I noticed a couple studying it intensely. I walked up and took this pic and left.

As I was walking away, the lady said to her husband, "That's a good idea!" Take a picture of it! He pulled out the newest iPhone! I don't think people understand the power of these little computers sitting in our pockets…

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