Book Review – The Accidental Billionaires

Posted in: Consulting & Entrepreneurship, Social Networking

This book is a fascinating look at how Facebook started and what it means to go from a college dorm room to a multi-billion dollar valuation in just a few short years.

It is not surprising that there are some casualties on a rocket ride like that, but you cannot explain away all of the deception, backstabbing and betrayal that easily. The book points a finger squarely at Mark Zuckerberg the original brains behind the operation, as the likely cause of many of Facebook’s troubles. The book does elude to the irony that is someone like Mark Zuckerberg, who is by all accounts socially awkward if not entirely inept, running the biggest social networking site the world has ever seen.

The book is a work of non-fiction (or near non-fiction), but it reads like a fiction novel and is easily digestible.

I am the first to admit that I resisted the lure of Facebook until late in 2009, so I was kind of late to the Facebook party. Now with all of the bad press Facebook has been getting lately because of their seemingly cavalier handling of their user’s personal data, I am starting to question whether I made the right decision to create an account at all. This book clearly raises the question as to whether you should be trusting your personal data to Mark Zuckerberg.



Multiple Online-Personality Disorder

Posted in: Personal Branding, Social Networking

With the increased hype and focus on social media and social networking, many people are struggling with trying to keep their public/private lives, or their professional/personal lives separate. And for those people, I have some bad news – there can be only one You in social media!
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Building Social Applications using Zembly

Posted in: Social Networking

Twitter Recap for Week Ending 2009-06-15

Posted in: Social Networking

Facebook Vanity Land Grab – Behind The Scenes

Posted in: Personal Branding, Social Networking

Last night, we were live at Facebook headquarters when they launched Facebook (Facebook) usernames to the public. The numbers were astounding, and so was the celebration over the successful launch.

http://mashable.com/2009/06/13/facebook-3-million-usernames/

Great article from Ben Parr at Mashable, showing what went on at Facebook HQ during Friday night’s vanity land grab.

What I took away from the photos that were posted, was that Facebook’s success is based on the following criteria:

  • All engineers having MacBook Pros with large external monitors
  • A casual dress code
  • All engineers able to work in the same room to facilitate collaboration
  • Close proximity of Beach Boy-esque musical equipment to release tension
  • An ample supple of Blue Moon Hefeweizen, Newcastle Brown Ale and McCallan 12 year old scotch

I grabbed my piece of the Facebook landscape:
http://www.facebook.com/craigsdickson

links for 2009-06-14

Posted in: Social Networking
  • Facebook is a social utility that connects people with friends and others who work, study and live around them. People use Facebook to keep up with friends, upload an unlimited number of photos, post links and videos, and learn more about the people they meet.

Facebook To Offer Vanity URLs

Posted in: Social Networking

Your profile/page on a social network is key piece of your online presence. So the URL to that little piece of you becomes very important, particularly in terms of branding and SEO.

Most of the social networks provide you with some kind of easy to remember public URL for your profile that usually contains of your username. All except Facebook, where you are subjected to a horrible unfriendly numeric user id as your URL. Which has many downsides, not the least of which it is hard to remember and communicate and the URL of site actually has a big impact on SEO issues and so missing out on having your name in the URL can hurt your search ranking success (this is particularly important if you use a consistent identity across all of your social networks).

However, in a blog post, Facebook has announced that it will support vanity URLs for individual and fan pages starting this weekend (specifically 12:01am EDT Saturday morning).

No doubt there will be a huge land grab when they open this up, so don’t delay!