For Immediate Release 168: The Facebook dilemma


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Neville Hobson joins Shel Holtz for the December installment of “The Hobson & Holtz Report.” The stories Neville and Shel covered include…
  • The passing of PR fixture Jack O’Dwyer
  • Marketers are turning their attention to messaging apps
  • Not everyone is free to leave Facebook, even if they want to
  • The death of keywords (or is it?) as audiences become key to targeting in search
  • Rising Instagram stars post fake sponsored posts to get brands’ attention
  • What we learned about GDPR in 2018
  • Research reveals how journalists can rebuild trust in media; could it work in business?
  • Dan York reports on the Quora data breach, rural connectivity, free (for now) LinkedIn Learning courses, more on Facebook’s woes, Slack banning users with links to Iran, and a new podcast all-in-one mixing desk.
Special thanks to Jay Moonah for the opening and closing music. Links from this month’s episode:

SDF Podcast 24: Reading the runes for 2019


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The SmallDataForum celebrated its third Christmas with a highly calorific and somewhat alcoholic Italian lunch, followed by post-prandial musings about high- and low-lights of 2018, and some crystal ball gazing for 2019. Our regular followers / listeners – or just about anybody with any interest in tech and communication – won’t be surprised by a list being topped by Facebook, and then some more Facebook. Followed by GDPR and other regulatory activities, mainly by the EU. And of course we also touched on the topic that’s been with us from episode one, when it was called Brexit. These days, Brexitexit is beginning to sound more fitting. In his analysis of FB’s / MZ’s predicament, Sam combined review and preview. He sees FB’s annus horribilis as the beginning of the end for the meaningful global connector. At the time of the 2019 SDF Christmas lunch, he expects FB’s chief apologist to
Thomas Stoeckle
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Social Web Update 10.12.18


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A weekly annotated curation of significant social web platform developments from the previous week, with links and carping marginalia as needed . . . Posted every Monday morning or thereabouts.  
          <img class="thumb-image" alt="Screen Shot 2018-12-05 at 2.12.22 PM.png" data-image="https://static1.squarespace.com/static/5821cd7e5016e1bf5d3ebcea/t/5c0a75de352f5339d21f6000/1544189411838/Screen+Shot+2018-12-05+at+2.12.22+PM.png" data-image-dimensions="643x361" data-image-focal-point="0.5,0.5" data-load="false" data-image-id="5c0a75de352f5339d21f6000" data-type="image" src="https://static1.squarespace.com/static/5821cd7e5016e1bf5d3ebcea/t/5c0a75de352f5339d21f6000/1544189411838/Screen+Shot+2018-12-05+at+2.12.22+PM.png?format=1000w" />

Love the Numbers

Hootsuite’s Social Media Trends 2019 points to the “storifying” of social as one of the trends to watch in the coming year as people look for more personalized experiences than on the standard social platform and messaging news feeds. So far, WhatsApp is the ‘stories’ winner, but Instagram isn’t far behind.

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Tumblr

The big news last week was Tumblr’s announcement it will no longer allow “adult content, including explicit sexual content and nudity (with some exceptions)”, in the interest it says of being “a safe place for creative expression, self-discovery, and a deep sense of community.” When it comes to child pornography of course this makes sense. But some have pointed out that its sexual content had Continue reading "Social Web Update 10.12.18"

Welcome to the Gutenberg Editor


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Of Mountains & Printing Presses

A new version of WordPress is expected to land during the next few weeks  – perhaps even as soon as December 6 – if development plans proceed smoothly. I’ve been a WordPress user since version 1.5 over a decade ago, and I’m excited about 5 mostly because of Gutenberg, the brand new post and page editor that aims ultimately to replace the traditional classic editor that’s been part of WordPress since its beginnings. This new version 5.0 release of the popular content management system also brings a wide range of improved functionality and new features. I’ve been kicking the tyres a bit with Gutenberg and have found it extremely intuitive, easy to use and definitely the way forward for creating content-to-publish in the WordPress platform itself. What better way to illustrate what it can do that’s different than by writing this
Beautiful landscape
Accessibility is important — don’t forget image alt attribute
?
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Social Web Update 26.11.18


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My weekly annotated summary of significant social web platform developments from the previous week, with links and carping marginalia as needed . . . Posted every Monday morning or thereabouts.  
          <img class="thumb-image" alt="Screen Shot 2018-11-21 at 6.52.40 AM.png" data-image="https://static1.squarespace.com/static/5821cd7e5016e1bf5d3ebcea/t/5bf547281ae6cf01e1820961/1542801198331/Screen+Shot+2018-11-21+at+6.52.40+AM.png" data-image-dimensions="838x292" data-image-focal-point="0.5,0.5" data-load="false" data-image-id="5bf547281ae6cf01e1820961" data-type="image" src="https://static1.squarespace.com/static/5821cd7e5016e1bf5d3ebcea/t/5bf547281ae6cf01e1820961/1542801198331/Screen+Shot+2018-11-21+at+6.52.40+AM.png?format=1000w" />

Love the Numbers

A poll conducted by SurveyMonkey for "Axios on HBO” concludes that U.S. adults still prefer to communicate in person rather than in digital formats. Maybe that’s what they say when asked. But reported preference and actual behavior are two different matters. And a preference for in-person communication doesn’t mean a choice favoring human interaction . Just take a look at people traveling on transit or walking down the street and notice how many even look up from their smartphones at the world around them.

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Facebook

Facebook appears to have added a “tool that prompts users to comment on live video using algorithmically-generated text or emoji. The text, similar to that used in Google’s Gmail, attempts to Continue reading "Social Web Update 26.11.18"

SDF Podcast 23: Pretty crazy ideas about the Facebook


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Facebook “The ever-present function of propaganda in modern life is in large measure attributable to the social disorganization which has been precipitated by the rapid advent of technological changes.” This is not the latest comment on the perpetual missteps, mishaps and misuse of Facebook, but a quote from Harold D. Lasswell, eminent media scholar and creator of the eponymous and never-aging model and formula to determine media effects: who says what to whom in which channel with what effect? Who said what to whom, and subsequent effects – that was also the theme of a multi-thousand-word investigative piece on Facebook and its executive team in the New York Times on 15th November. By now, I’m sure anybody with even the remotest interest in the SmallDataForum canon of themes will be familiar with the story and the fall-out: basically, Facebook got burned by burning all sorts of lobbying,
Ruins
Thumbs down
Screwed up
Thomas Stoeckle
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For Immediate Release 164: BA flummoxed by cyberflashing


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British Airways In the November episode of “The Hobson & Holtz Report,” aka FIR 164, Neville Hobson and Shel Holtz reviewed these stories:
  • British Airways management was as unprepared for the iPhone’s AirDrop creating an onboard kerfuffle as flight attendants were
  • With the influencer and micro influencer market saturated, marketers now look to nanoinfluencers
  • By 2022, most of the skills required for employability will be soft skills
  • The length of YouTube videos people will watch on their phones continues to increase
  • Gen Z uses text and chat more than any other generation, but how do they feel about new technologies?
  • Fake videos have entered the political space; can business be far behind? But new apps can help identify fakes
  • Dan York reports on Facebook’s new Lasso app, a Google outage, and “signed exchange”
Special thanks to Jay Moonah for the opening and closing music. Links from this month’s episode

Social Web Update 19.11.18


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My weekly annotated summary of significant social web platform developments from the previous week, with links and carping marginalia as needed . . . Posted every Monday morning or thereabouts.  This week it starts below the lovely photo courtesy of Unsplash.
          <img class="thumb-image" data-image="https://static1.squarespace.com/static/5821cd7e5016e1bf5d3ebcea/t/5bf8833e562fa7c95dd53dc6/1543013203458/" data-image-dimensions="2500x1666" data-image-focal-point="0.5,0.5" data-load="false" data-image-id="5bf8833e562fa7c95dd53dc6" data-type="image" src="https://static1.squarespace.com/static/5821cd7e5016e1bf5d3ebcea/t/5bf8833e562fa7c95dd53dc6/1543013203458/?format=1000w" />

Snapchat

Need reminding about what you and your  friends have shared on Snapchat? Well Snapchat has introduced ‘Friendship Profiles’ where—privately— “you’ll find the images, videos, messages, links, and more that you and your friends have saved in Chat, all in one place.” Not being a Snapchat user—it’s not popular in my, how should I put this, demographic — I can’t say whether this adds value or not. Snapchatters let me know by leaving a comment. Is this a sign of where Snapchat sees its future? Snapchat Shows is pushing for a foothold in Norway, where according to Digiday two-thirds of the population has a profile on the app and where last Continue reading "Social Web Update 19.11.18"

Emerging tech: Your bookmark for 2019


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Data has a better idea “We know from human history that developments in technologies over the centuries, ranging from the Industrial Revolution through to the invention of the automobile, then airplanes and so forth, the landscape of progress is littered with human casualties. People die because of these things being tested.” A provocative statement, the first thing you hear in episode 1 in the third season of the Digital Download podcast that I did with host Paul Sutton last month in which we discussed emerging technologies and communications and what’s predicted to hit the mainstream within the next two to three years. That statement was intended to sharpen focus on the dilemmas confronting all of us when we want to try something new or radically different to advance our knowledge, our well-bring, our development, where there are risks in doing so. It’s an extreme example of risk and consequence on the journey to that
Continue reading "Emerging tech: Your bookmark for 2019"

For Immediate Release 155: Did neglect kill SlideShare?


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slideshare-tombstone For the September episode of the monthly Hobson & Holtz Report podcast, aka FIR 155, I was the solo host with Shel away. Doing the show like this reminded me of the old days of FIR when Shel and I recorded a weekly show for over ten years, where one of us would typically do it all solo if the other was away. This was one of those times! Anyway, you have a show to listen to so here’s what’s in this month’s H&H Report: In his Tech
FIR155graphic
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SDF Podcast 21: Attention, meaningful content and post-apocalyptic novels


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monitor Our latest podcast ended up being a tad longer than planned – clearly a sign of a lively, engaged discussion. In talking about various aspects of the attention economy, we managed to hold each other’s attention for a good 45 minutes. This episode’s show notes were written by Thomas Stoeckle. Many ‘attention economists’ these days quote Nobel Laureate Herbert Simon and his observation that a wealth of information creates a poverty of attention. It is certainly a quote that has aged well, and one can only wonder what Simon would make of the world now, 47 years on from his famous statement. Sam doesn’t quite see the crisis of attention that brands often lament. But quality and controllability matter more than ever, and producers of content – especially the advertising and media industries – need to up their game to stay relevant. Users control their online experience through ad blockers
WTF
Thomas Stoeckle
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For Immediate Release 152: LOL (TM)


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Febreze Neville Hobson joined FIR host Shel Holtz for the August edition of The Hobson and Holtz Report on the FIR Podcast Network. Topics included…
  • P&G is attempting to trademark common Internet acronyms, including LOL.
  • Texting has become a common tool in political campaigns. Will it find its way into marketing?
  • Gen Zers will outnumber Millennials within a year. There are implications for communicators.
  • Should your company be on IGTV?
  • A look at vanished technologies from Gartner’s 2017 hypecycle of emerging technologies.
  • Engagement on Facebook is plummeting.
Special thanks to Jay Moonah for the opening and closing music.

Listen Now

(Or download the MP3 file) Links from this episode:

SDF Podcast 20: GDPR, ePrivacy, copyright and antitrust: the EU’s long game


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Show notes for this episode written by Thomas Stoeckle. “If a tree falls in a forest, and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?” A modern version of this 18th century thought experiment by the philosopher and cleric George Berkeley might read: “If the EU fines a big tech firm billions of dollars, and no one has the power to enforce it, has it actually happened?” A recent opinion piece on AdExchanger discussed the connection between Google’s $5bn antitrust fine, and the enforcement of fines for GDPR non-compliance. Europe is committed to taking a stand against corporations when it comes to privacy rights of consumers, intellectual property rights of content producers (although the planned law is controversial), and anti-competitive market positions. But there is potential tension between the goal of harmonizing privacy law across EU member states, and implementation and
Thomas Stoeckle
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For Immediate Release 147: Tell Me a (Facebook) Story


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Neville Hobson joined FIR host Shel Holtz for the July edition of “The Hobson & Holtz Report” and conversation about these topics:
  • Starbucks and plastic straws (listener comment from Kris Gallagher)
  • British Airways asks customers to post personal data on Twitter ‘to comply with GDPR’
  • Will Facebook Stories (and Instagram Stories, Messenger Stories, WhatsApp Stories, and Snapchat Stories) change how marketers use social media?
  • Whatever the EU does about copyright laws, expect it to change social media globally
  • Chatrooms come out of closed beta at Reddit
  • Facebook has suspended Crimson Hexagon from accessing data while it investigates how that data is being used
  • New buyers of smart speakers want to reduce the amount of time they spend looking at screens
Also, Gini Dietrich shares her thoughts on companies shrugging off the “E” in the PESO model she helped develop, Dan York has his Tech Report, and more. Special thanks to 
Continue reading "For Immediate Release 147: Tell Me a (Facebook) Story"

Social Web Update 23.07.18


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My weekly annotated summary of significant social web platform developments from the previous week, with links and carping marginalia as needed . . . Posted every Monday morning or thereabouts.

Love the Numbers

Gender breakdowns of social media usage are instructive, and the subject sometimes of heated dinner conversations. Debate this, for example: Why do more women than men use Pinterest? Here's Statista's May 2018 report on  social media usage in Canada . . . by gender. Screen Shot 2018-07-22 at 7.43.13 AM.png

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Instagram

The photo and video-sharing platform appears to be testing more broadly allowing public account holders "to manually kick people out of their pool of followers",  functionality that has always been available for private accounts. The ubiquitous green activity ‘dot’ is coming to Instagram! Instagram announced last week that you’ll see a green dot next to your friends’ profile pictures when they are active. The dots will appear “in various spaces within the app, including the Direct inbox Continue reading "Social Web Update 23.07.18"

Twitter removes fake followers to build trust in follower counts


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Twitter profile If you’ve noticed a sudden drop in the number of people following you on Twitter, the likeliest reason would be action taken by Twitter last week as part of its efforts to build trust and confidence in follower counts – the number of people who follow others on the social network. In an announcement posted on July 11, Twitter said it had begun a global action to remove suspicious accounts from users’ followers, describing it as a step to improve Twitter and ensure everyone can have confidence in their followers.
As a result, the number of followers displayed on many profiles may go down. Most people will see a change of four followers or fewer; others with larger follower counts will experience a more significant drop. We understand this may be hard for some, but we believe accuracy and transparency make Twitter a more trusted service for public conversation.
Before and After
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For Immediate Release 143: Fired by mistake by an AI


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Neville Hobson joined FIR host Shel Holtz for the June edition of “The Hobson & Holtz Report” and conversation about these topics:
  • An employee was mistakenly fired by an AI system and managers stood by powerless to correct the mistake. Was AI really to blame?
  • IBM has introduced an AI designed for debate, which could mean there’s finally an unbiased devil’s advocate to point out the flaws in your business plan.
  • There is no minimizing the threat to the Internet posed by the draconian copyright restrictions the European Parliament could vote into law as early as the first week of July.
  • A couple of PRSA members are proposing an overhaul of ethics rules to make sure they apply to the group’s executive board (and making their case hasn’t been easy).
  • The World Cup is using a Video Assisted Referee, which would have applications far beyond sports.
  • Facebook is testing paid monthly
    FIR 143 The Hobson & Holtz Report
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SDF Podcast 19: Is GDPR much ado about nothing?


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GDPR Ten days after the EU General Data Protection Regulation came into action, the SmallDataForum convened to provide initial assessments and perspectives. This episode’s show notes were written by Thomas Stoeckle. Are we witnessing comedy or drama? Much ado about nothing or the end of the world as we know it? Clearly it is much too early to tell, and yet (of course) we found a lot to discuss, from varying levels of preparedness (not just on businesses’ side, but also among governments, regulators etc), to impacts on the data-driven digital advertising business, to the next level of EU rule regarding electronic communication, the so-called ePrivacy Regulation. Among the early legal cases, the most prominent so far is Austrian privacy activist Max Schrems’s challenge of Facebook, WhatsApp and Instagram (reported by the Irish Times). Sam points out that Schrems, the man behind the None of Your Business website (www.
Continue reading "SDF Podcast 19: Is GDPR much ado about nothing?"

For Immediate Release 139: Augmented PR


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Neville and Shel get together via YouTube Hangout for the May 2018 installment of “The Hobson & Holtz Report,” with conversations about…
  • GDPR, which officially went into effect on Friday May 25
  • BuzzFeed’s live-streaming experiment on Twitch
  • CIPR’s white paper on the role of Artificial Intelligence in public relations
  • Google is under pressure to up its podcasting game
  • Google lets you see your history of interactions and it’s a lot less creepy than Facebook
  • Generation Z will bypass politics and engage via consumerism
  • Dan York reports on GDPR, Airbnb’s travel “stories,” Anchor’s new mobile import feature, and WordPress’ 15th anniversary
Special thanks to Jay Moonah for the opening and closing music.

Listen Now

Or download the MP3 file. Links from this week’s episode