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Ashton Kutcher Uses Twitter to Punk the Media

Ashton Kutcher (@aplusk) is threatening to quit Twitter over (not so true) rumors the micro-blogging service had signed a TV deal. His exact Tweet:

Now, I have to admit, this is either brilliant or naive.

Brilliant, if Kutcher is punking the media with such a claim. After all, the guy is known for messing with people’s heads. It’s quite possible that the guy–who can’t live without the spotlight–is simply acting upset, in order to get even more attention than he received from his Oprah appearance. Heck, CNN fell for it.

On the flip side, if Kutcher is sincere with his tweet, then it shows a staggering amount of naivety–and should be a wake-up call for all of us.

He follows-up his first Tweet with:

From Russia with Cash – Facebook Gets $200 Million

facebook2So all of the talk of valuations and all of the speculation regarding board seats and on and on and on has come to a close – for now. Facebook yesterday picked up a cool $200 million from a relatively unknown Russian investor, Digital Sky Technologies. All Things Digital reports

The social network is selling $200 million of preferred stock at a $10 billion valuation; DST will also buy up to $100 million of common stock at a lower valuation later this year.

While significantly less than the valuation of $15 billion established when Microsoft jumped into the Facebook frenzy many feel that the number that Microsoft invested on was inflated. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg touched on the issue in a conference call. Peter Kafka covered it ‘live’ and commented

Pass or Fail: Twitter’s Reality TV Plans

UPDATE: Looks like there won’t be a Twitter TV show.

In an effort to capitalize on its increased attention, Twitter has agreed to a TV deal with Reveille Productions and Brillstein Entertainment Partners. And not just any TV series, friends, a REALITY TV series (cue the hallelujah chorus). I think we’ve all had this void in our life, and in our TV lineups in particular, that was missing something . . . something AMAZING. The Twitter reality TV show is just that.

Who wouldn’t want to see people stalk celebrities via Twitter? What’s that you say? You can already see people stalking celebrities on Twitter by simply visiting twitter.com? Blasphemy! This has number one TV rankings written all over it.

Social Media Doesn’t Drive Purchases?

Contravening prevailing wisdom, the results of a new survey from Knowledge Networks show that social media does not, in fact, drive purchases. Fewer than 5% of consumers age 18-34 “regularly turn to these sites for guidance on purchase decisions” on various product categories.

Or, rather, a new survey from Knowledge Networks shows that very, very few people think that social media influences their purchase decisions. And this is a story we’ve heard before—a year ago, Pew Internet Life conducted a similar survey and concluded the same thing, even though their stats really only indicated that the Internet doesn’t influence people who don’t use it. And once again, at first glance, these numbers aren’t very encouraging:

  • 16% of the social-media users surveyed said they’re more inclined to buy brands that advertise on social sites

Social Media Is Important to Everyone – Not!

Ok, we have turned a corner. We are on the other side of a holiday weekend. The unofficial start of summer has come and gone. social-media-collageMany people have walked away from their computers for a few days and have actually continued to breathe. Many are coming back refreshed. And, in the case of Gene Marks over at BusinessWeek, coming off the weekend with a contrarian’s view to social media especially as it relates to small business.

What, you say? Someone who doesn’t think that social media will solve our communication issues, global warming and provide world peace? How dare he speak up and say something against the 140 character world makeover that is revolutionizing how we communicate? Here’s his points and, as always, your response, pro or con, is welcome.

Google SearchWiki Gets Social—Kinda

There was a minor uproar last November when Google introduced its SearchWiki feature, allowing users to personalize SERPs by moving results up or down, adding comments or blocking them altogether. When it became clear SearchWiki was here to stay, SEOs really had to wonder to what extent the data from individual users would be incorporated into Google’s 200+ ranking signals.

But now there’s a way to make sure your friends, family and neighbors can see your SearchWiki changes. SearchWiki just got more social—albeit in a really, really primitive way. Yes, now Google offers a link to your personalized SearchWiki results, so you can share those pages with friends.

Here’s how it works:
googwah1
You make your comment.

Twitter’s ‘Post Oprah’ Reality

An article over at CNN Money ran the headline “Oprah’s Skypefest draws backlash” while the page title included Twitter as well so I decided oprahto take a look. Now honestly, outside of my mom, I don’t know anyone that is part of “Oprah Nation” and I like it that way. It’s the numbers attached to her every move that are at once intriguing and disturbing. Now with her supposed love affair with social media, marketers have to at least keep an eye out to see what happens through this highly influential channel.

Well, according to the article, if you are Twitter, the initial press was pretty cool but as Oprah’s first tweet of

“HI TWITTERS . THANK YOU FOR A WARM WELCOME. FEELING REALLY 21st CENTURY.”