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Thoof.com Mixes Digg with Wikipedia

The NYT continues to impress me with their coverage of search and social media, this time reporting on the invite-only launch of Thoof.com. Thoof is the brainchild of serial entrepreneur Ian Clarke and appears to offer a news submission and voting site similar to Digg, but with the ability for users to edit the submissions and update the content, a la Wikipedia.

Mr. Clarke expects that a small percentage of the site’s users will contribute links to articles, while most readers will come to the site because it will match articles with their interests.

Active members of the Thoof community will be able to alter the contributions of other users, changing headlines and even substituting a link to a better article on the same subject. The community will then vote on the changes.

SMX Notes – SEO, Meet SMM

Ready to get more out of social media? The leaders in social media marketing dish on how to get in on the action–everything from why to where to how.

Rand Fishkin, CEO & Co-Founder, SEOmoz

SMM vs. Viral Marketing
Creating profiles on web 2.0 sites Building content targeted to linkerati
Building friends and relationships. Attract links & traffic

Social media is about making these communities work for me. It’s our job to do this with Google, now it’s our job to do this with others. Viral marketing is about stylistically different communities.

What can SMM do for you? You can rule the SERPs, control your brand, earn link love, show the community you’re a participant (more link love), get traffic, and influence traditional media.

When Viral Videos Don’t "Blend" As Planned

By Ryan Douglas

This week a team from our company went to Internet Retailer conference as did many of you who read this. We (and I say we because everyone in this company contributed in one way or another) were very proud of our own Tim Jackson and his first speaking engagement at the conference session. Our team had a great time and became well informed of new e-commerce topics, networked with many, and probably partied it up too (the real reason people go to these conferences). But enough of the shameless self plug…

In a previous post this week Greg Howlett brought up the topic of Blendtec and their popular viral marketing videos “Will it Blend?”. The effectiveness, positive or negative, of viral marketing has become increasingly more popular over the last few years. It seems like everyone remembers at least one silly commercial during a Super Bowl halftime, but don’t’ recall what the actual product or service was. We likely told all of our friends about this funny commercial, probably found it online and emailed it to several others, thus completing the viral marketer’s ultimate goal. Blendtec’s success with some home made videos from their test labs worked extremely well for them, did not cost much to produce at all, and seems to really have influenced people to purchase their products; way to go! Now we have videos of users at home blending up all sorts of items (much to Blendtec’s disclaimer not to) and I can watch everything from a Wii remote to operating systems (on cd) get blended up.

Should Parents Join Facebook?

There’s an interesting column in the New York Times that documents a mother’s attempts to connect with her daughter by joining Facebook- which is where the daughter hangs-out.

Things don’t really go well, with the mother being shunned by here daughter and even experts telling her that she’s messing with her daughter’s head.

…Professor Wesch reminded me that what Facebook’s younger users really are doing is exploring their identities, which they may not want to parade in front of their parents.

“Can’t I explore my identity, too?” I asked. “Why does everything fun have to be for them?”

He pointed out that there are a number of other social networks — sober, grown-up places like Linkedin.com (for making business contacts) and Care2.com (for social activists) and Webbiographies.com (for amateur genealogists) — where I could cavort without offending my daughter.

The Latest in Mobile Marketing Efforts

More big brands are working on campaigns targeted to mobile users. Sprite is premiering a mobile social network, called the Sprite Yard. In fact, they launched last week in China, with the US debut planned for June 22.

The mobile social network enables its users to share photos, calendars, messages and discussions with other users. MediaPost mentions another feature:

At the Sprite Yard, users will also have access to “Nuggets” of exclusive downloadable content, from mobisodes (short animated and video content created by Coca-Cola and other media partners) to ringtones. The branding tie-in is designed to drive sales as well as engagement, as content can only be unlocked by using a PIN found under Sprite bottle caps.

LiveJournal Faces Community Backlash for Deleting Accounts

LiveJournal faced a user backlash, when it deleted hundreds of communities, as part of its efforts to clean up pedophilia-related discussions.

Apparently, the company’s noble efforts included the removal of many fantasy communities where users share sexually-explicit fictional stories.

The mass reinstatement means that the deleted science fiction and fantasy “fandom” groups–many of which boast sexually explicit fiction written by fans about characters such as those from the Harry Potter or Buffy the Vampire Slayer universes–began reappearing Thursday.

The community retaliated and LiveJournal apologized and is in the process of reinstating the accounts that don’t violate its policy. It’s a tough decision for LiveJournal. The sites are not breaking any laws, but do violate LiveJournal’s terms of service which ban “objectionable” content.

Twitter – Good or Evil?

CNET is running opposite perspectives on social messaging service Twitter.

Caroline McCarthy is writing in favor of the service…

The beauty of Twitter is that, unlike a full-out blog, there’s no obligation to be philosophical, thought-provoking or grammatically sound. Because it doesn’t require that kind of extra effort, it’s great for people like me who want to jump on the social-media bandwagon but don’t have the time to set up something elaborate on WordPress.

Meanwhile, Elinor Mills goes on the attack…

I don’t understand the need to spew out personal information and random thoughts to the world. And that’s just what Twitter is designed for: to be a medium through which you can share stream-of-conscious babblings with your friends and with anyone who has time to lurk on the Web site and read inane musings of strangers.