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Twitter in the Classroom

Ever since teaching 6th graders about blogging, I’ve paid more attention to how social media sites can enhance learning. Blogging certainly can improve writing skills and at the same time introduce children to ideas that will make them more marketable when they hit the job force (assuming they do).

I haven’t heard of elementary school teachers using Twitter, but David Parry, an assistant professor of Emerging Media and Communications at the University of Texas at Dallas says Twitter really enhances learning in his classes.

He calls Twitter a “classroom-communication tool.” His class titled, “Introduction to Computer-Mediated Communication” was the trial run. Students were required to sign up for Twitter and to send a few messages with the service each week. They had to subscribe to his Twitter feed. He updated students a few times a day on useful web sites, or the rhythm of his day.

Join me at the Aloha Social Media Summit this March – Just 28 Seats!

How would you like to go to Hawaii?

How would you like to go to Hawaii and learn cutting-edge social media tactics?

How would you like to go to Hawaii and learn cutting-edge social media tactics, AND tell Uncle Sam that it was a necessary business expense?

You need to register for the first ever Aloha Social Media Summit, and join me, Dave Taylor, Roxanne Darling, and other experts for two days of intense hands-on training.

The workshop will take place March 18/19 on the Big Island of Hawaii and we promise there’ll be no sales-pitches, no boring PowerPoint, and no over-crowding.

The Aloha Social Media Summit will be run like a workshop–in the vein of Elite Retreat–and will be limited to just 28 attendees. That way we can guarantee that you’ll come away with valuable, personalized knowledge you can use.

Coming Soon – Target Google AdWords to MySpace Users

This is an exciting development . Google is testing a new feature to allow you to target ads to specific demographics on MySpace and other web sites. So it your web site sells NY Yankee tickets and your main demographic is men aged 30-45. Your ads can show up just on profiles of men who are in that age group.

You can then adjust your bids accordingly. The ads will be filtered by age and gender demographics and you can get reports to further refine your results.

Many people are blind to ads on social networking sites, but assuming you’re great at capturing your audience’s attention, this could be huge. People spend a lot more time on MySpace than a regular web sites. Recent data put the average time people spend on MySpace as a whopping 29:36 minutes. Plus they return to the site more frequently.

Digg Causes ED Among Social Marketers; Will it Now Go Limp Itself?

As I write this, I’m conscious of the claims some SEOs make that Google "needs" them in order to make the results relevant. Google would hardly collapse without optimizers’ interest, but can the same be said about Digg?

Digg’s Kevin Rose has officially announced what we’ve all seen over the past week or so: it’s now a lot harder to push your content onto the front page of Digg. In fact, Digg’s adjusting its algorithm so that you’ll need well north of 100 Diggs to have any chance.

As we point out in our FAQ, occasionally you will see stories in the upcoming section with 100+ Diggs – this is evidence of our promotion algorithm hard at work. One of the keys to getting a story promoted is diversity in Digging activity. When the algorithm gets the diversity it needs, it will promote a story from the Upcoming section to the home page. This way, the system knows a large variety of people will be into the story.

Reddit Will Let Users Create their Own Reddit Site

Digg fans have always had the option of creating their own version of the site, thanks to Pligg. Now Reddit fans are going to get the opportunity to create their own personal version of the popular social voting site.

According to the Reddit blog, the company is in closed beta testing this week as it figures out how exactly to let users create their own version of Reddit.

You will be able to make three kinds of reddits: public, restricted, and private. A public reddit is just like the current reddits: anyone can view and submit to them. A restricted reddit allows anyone to view the content, but only invited members may submit, comment, or vote. A private reddit is like a restricted reddit, but with the additional restriction that only members can view the content as well. Moderators of a reddit will be able to remove posts and ban users from their reddits.

Will You Pownce on Twitter Alternative?

I know that Pownce doesn’t care much for the comparisons to Twitter, but now that it’s come out of beta–and opened-up to all–the comparisons will surely follow.

I joined Pownce (my profile) back when it launched, but haven’t touched it since, mostly because it wasn’t as well used as Twitter–understandable considering you had to have an invite in order to use it.

So, will you switch to Pownce, stick with Twitter, or use both/neither?

Here’s a peek at it:

Legal Troubles in Europe for Google, Facebook

Google and Facebook, sweethearts of the Internet who would never face legal challenges on this side of the Atlantic, are both looking at legal troubles in Europe.

Facebook is facing a privacy probe in the UK, according to the BBC. The issue at hand is the fact that Facebook retains personal information about a user even after a user terminates his or her account.

Facebook acknowledges the practice in their Privacy Policy (emphasis added):

Access and control over most personal information on Facebook is readily available through the profile editing tools. Facebook users may modify or delete any of their profile information at any time by logging into their account. Information will be updated immediately. Individuals who wish to deactivate their Facebook account may do so on the My Account page. Removed information may persist in backup copies for a reasonable period of time but will not be generally available to members of Facebook.