This week’s Social Media Matters column (originally published May 27, 2011)

Social Media Matters
By Brian Cormier
Moncton Times & Transcript
Friday, May 27, 2011
Metro section

Huffington Post arrives in Canada this week

Boasting more than 1.5 million readers from Canada, the Huffington Post news and blog site has decided to expand to Canada and was expected to launch earlier this week.

One of the most popular news websites in the world, it was recently purchased by AOL from founder Ariana Huffington for US$315 million. It recruits bloggers to write for it at no cost, assuming that the prestige of writing for the invitation-only Huffington Post is suitable compensation. While some disagree with this practice, it’s obviously working and provides an extra level of exposure and legitimacy to some of the more unknown bloggers that they may have otherwise not been able to achieve.

Are not exposure and prestige a form of payment? Of course they are. And, of course, you need to have a “day job” to pay the bills. There’s nothing wrong with writing content for exposure. Done correctly, it will lead to bigger and better things – and be a win-win situation for all parties involved.

And, since it’s all entirely voluntary, if writing for non-monetary compensation doesn’t sit well with someone, they simply don’t have to do it.

Notable YouTube channels

Jimmy Kimmel Live! (youtube.com/jimmykimmellive) – Kimmel’s YouTube channel is updated often and carries many of the comedy bits and interviews from his popular and irreverent late-night talk show. What’s even better, they realize the power of social media by allowing embedding of the videos in blogs, news sites, etc. This is often frowned upon by television networks that still haven’t clued in to the fact that there are millions of people out there willing to advertise and promote their shows for free. This is especially easy when using the YouTube platform. Kudos to them! (Subscribers: 200,000 )

The Royal Family (youtube.com/theroyalchannel): Yes, even the Royal Family has a YouTube channel. While the channel’s administrators did not previously allow embedding, they seem to have had a change of heart and realize the benefits of allowing others to post videos to blogs, etc. If you missed the royal wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton, you can see many of the highlights there. Also featured are various visits by Queen Elizabeth and other members of the Royal Family. (Subscribers: 120,000 )

Ricky Ficarelli (youtube.com/RickyFicarelli): Ricky is a talented 17-year-old drummer who plays drum covers of popular songs. What’s the big deal, you may ask? Well, watch one of his videos to find out! He knows how to play to the camera and the video quality and editing are excellent. And he’s darn good! There aren’t many young celebrity drummers out there, but Ricky is certainly going to be one. (Subscribers: 62,000 )

Notable tweeps

If you don’t know what a “tweep” is, it’s someone with a Twitter account. Here are a few locals you may want to follow:

@jonnabrewercbc is the new Twitter account for CBC Radio Moncton’s news director Jonna Brewer who reads the news every weekday morning on Information Morning. Also on Twitter is the show’s host, Dave MacDonald (@cbcmacd).

@CapitolMoncton is the new Twitter account for Moncton’s Capitol Theatre. It is updated regularly with news and upcoming events. Casino New Brunswick also has a Twitter account that is updated regularly: @casinonewbruns

@davergallant is the Twitter account for Dave Gallant, a local social media consultant. Dave is always tweeting lots of useful information and statistics regarding social media. If you want to learn more about social media, you should definitely follow Dave’s account! You won’t regret it and you’ll learn a lot!

Finally, were you a fan of The Waltons television series? If so, you’ll be pleased to know that Gramma and Grandpa Walton have their own (tongue-in-cheek) Twitter accounts: @GrandpaWalton and @GrammaWalton. Quite entertaining!

Twitter buys TweetDeck

If you’re a serious Twitter user, you likely rarely use the actual Twitter website, opting to use a third-party application such as TweetDeck or HootSuite. According to a news story posted to PCWorld (www.pcworld.com) earlier this week, Twitter has finalized a deal to purchase TweetDeck for $40 million.

I’ve tried both TweetDeck and HootSuite and can honestly say that I don’t see the attraction to TweetDeck at all. HootSuite seems much more powerful and versatile. However, Twitter’s move is strategic since there are more users on TweetDeck than any other third-party Twitter application and their aim is controlling their users. Makes sense!

If you’re not on Twitter, it’s a bit of a phenomenon that many users don’t actually use the Twitter website. They tend to use other more powerful platforms that allow for scheduled tweets, automatic link shortening and multiple on-screen feeds to manage their Twitter experience. The actual Twitter website is rudimentary, at best. If that’s all you’re using to manage your Twitter account, I can assure you that you’re selling yourself short. I would definitely suggest moving over to HootSuite or TweetDeck.

I hope the purchase of TweetDeck doesn’t mean that HootSuite will be strangled.

3 Responses to This week’s Social Media Matters column (originally published May 27, 2011)

  1. Thanks for the mention Brian; much appreciated!

    I actually use a combination of Hootsuite for monitoring mentions, retweets, and some scheduling, then use Sproutsocial for simplified reports and notifications.

    Ironically enough, I actually use Twitter.com mainly because I love it’s simplicity and how I can view twitter lists.