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Steve Rubel Attacks SEO’s Use of Social Media – The Pot Calling the Kettle Black?

I like Steve Rubel. He’s a great PR professional and a thought-leader in social media, but he’s way off the mark with his new blog post: “SEO Shenanigans Pose a Clear and Present Danger to Social Media

If you go and read it, you’ll see hypocritical statements like this:

Search engine optimization (SEO) professionals of late seem poised to take over blogs, digg, StumbleUpon and other sites with a range of tactics, some legit, others more questionable with the intent of building Google Juice and nothing more….

…What does get me hot and bothered is when consultants and bloggers propose launching such an initiatives solely for influencing search. SEO, like word of mouth, should be a byproduct outcome, not a primary objective. Any brand that plays in this space should be aiming to create value. Do that and the other stuff will follow.

Things You Can Do With Twitter

I am relatively new to Twitter. I have only been using it for a short while and I find it an excellent tool for stream of consciousness thinking and quick communication to online communities that I interact with on a regular basis.

With that said I also must say that the recent reliability issues have made me question whether or not it is a long term tool I want to continue using, still I believe I will wait a bit longer before making my final judgment.

Kevin Dugan has recently posted what I think are some quality Twitter tips and provided some excellent resources to keep on top of all the newest Twitter applications. Kevin’s post covers the following topics:

Hurry! Register for Aloha Social Media Summit by Weds & Save $1000!!!

If you’re interested in learning the hottest social media marketing tactics, would like personalized training, and want an excuse to visit Hawaii, you should register for the Aloha Social Media Summit.

If you also want to save $1000 off the normal registration cost, you must register by February 20th and use discount code "pilgrim"

The Aloha Social Media Summit will take place on March 18th and 19th on the Big Island of Hawaii and is co-hosted by Dave Taylor and myself. We promise no boring PowerPoint, custom workshop training, and only the best instructors.

Space is limited to just 28 attendees, so you’d better reserve your seat now!

Can Twitter Crack the Teen Market?

I’m not quite sure how a NYT piece on Twitter ended-up in the “Fashion & Style” section, but it’s an interesting read nonetheless.

Michelle Slatalla (or should that be @slatalla) explains her attempts to convince her teenage daughters to use Twitter as a broadcast system for family updates. Unfortunately, despite being “superconnected” her kids feel Twitter is spammy or some kind of surveillance–rather than a tool for knowing where mom is.

Towards the end of the piece we learn that perhaps Twitter’s destined to be the tool of marketers and PR folks–those of us that are obsessed with promoting ourselves. According to Walter J. Carl, an assistant professor of communications studies at Northeastern University:

Facebook Cleans Up Act, Disabled Accounts

Facing pressure from a UK probe and continued coverage from the New York Times, Facebook seems to have realized that people don’t appreciate the website keeping their data after discontinuing their accounts.

To review, it has long been difficult for people to really get off Facebook. Last summer, Steve Mansour attracted attention after (colorfully) documenting the 2504 Steps to Closing Your Facebook Account, or the actual process he had to go through to get his personal information removed from Facebook after he’d already deactivated his account. (Long story short: he was forced to delete every entry he made in a form, every friend he’d added, every note he’d written, etc., etc., individually.)

Rumor Mill: Google to Buy Bebo

bebo logoTechCrunch speculates that there’s a 51% chance that Google might buy Bebo—or maybe MySpace will snap up the smaller social networking company. Last year, it was Yahoo that was supposed to be making a $1B offer on Bebo. This year’s guesses are similar—$1B to $1.5B.

TechCrunch explains that the move would almost double Google’s social networking audience, with Orkut’s millions of members worldwide plus Bebo’s non-US English-speaking market. Erick Schonfeld also notes that MySpace could assure its worldwide dominance by buying the #1 social network in several English-speaking countries.

Bebo has an exclusive partnership with Yahoo for display and video advertising. They initially signed on to Google’s OpenSocial, but soon also accepted Facebook’s platform as well.

Ask.com Launches Social Media News Site BigNews

Search engine Ask.com just launched a news aggregation site called BigNews. The difference is that it integrates voting with what it calls “BigFactor.” BigNews is like Yahoo News or Google News except it’s broader – it includes video, images, and blog posts related to each story.

If you click through to the actual story you’ll see related stories from Digg, sorted by number of votes. I also noticed Wikipedia content relating to the story.

If you mouseover the “BigFactor” vote you’ll see a score. It also shows a quick rundown on how the story rates according to criteria like how new the story is, how much discussion has resulted from the story, and other measurements. BigNews feeds in top stories on Digg as well as Digg stories with no votes – so you can be the first to vote on them. Click “track” and you can subscribe to the newsfeed or put it in “MyStuff.”