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The Washington Post Needs to Check The Facts

There is currently a crisis emerging in mainstream media. It is called, we don’t check the facts or seek quotes from other parties in the know on a subject to see if it is correct or not before we publish. Don’t get me wrong, Sarah Halzack’s article, “Marketing Moves to the Blogosphere” is actually filled with highly useful and well researched information about blog usage in companies big and small. I actually love the Washington Post for it’s linking to sources and its page numbers on the online article – these provide great context and are things other newspapers would be wise to learn (and implement) pronto. It is a newspaper that overall that “gets it”.

However, her assertion that Jason Calacanis has “retired from blogging” is utter complete nonsense that indicates a lack of research into the issue that distracts from an otherwise excellent article.

As you likely know, Jason Calacanis now has an email newsletter that seems to have a rather well organized “guest blogger” distribution network associated with it. Though Jason will likely never admit it publicly, it appears this was his plan all along. I have to tip my hat to him in as much as it actually increases his overall distribution network. Jason (and his “dogs”) also use Twitter which is called micro-blogging. Wikipedia defines it this way (as of this writing)

“Twitter is a free social networking and micro-blogging service that allows its users to send and read other users’ updates (otherwise known as tweets), which are text-based posts of up to 140 characters in length.”

So to say Jason has retired from blogging is, in reality at this time, factually inaccurate. But a simple reaching out to other bloggers and sources by the Washington Post could have easily revealed this issue. This is important as others may misinterpret “Jason’s retirement” and it could adversely affect someone’s blogging strategy due to such misinformation.

Sarah – could you please check out the situation a little deeper in the future so that thousands of people aren’t misinformed?

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Open Question for SES San Jose Day 1- Facebook Internal Search Optimization

For those in attendance at SES San Jose and SEOmoz PRO Training this week, does anyone know anyone who has done any detailed testing on optimizing Facebook for people doing internal searches on Facebook?

Please feel free to comment or reply if you have figured this arena out yet. As Facebook continues to grow in usage this is an area I’m seeking out information. Thanks.

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At SES San Jose / Silicon Valley 2008 Day 1

I had a flawless trip in from Chicago on Southwest Airlines (with a bunch of people with Dell computers with flaws – mostly dvd and hinge problems) and am here staying with my good friend David Temple during Search Engine Strategies San Jose.

It’s a kinda different show this year in both the crowd and some of the content type.

Already have had great meeting with Jim Hedger, Bryan Eisenberg and many others. Bryan has a new book, Always Be Testing, which just came out. I can’t wait to read it!

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My First Exposure To ifbyphone

Last week, Andy Abramson from Communicano invited me to an intimate breakfast that included developers from multiple countries, executives from ifbyphone,fonolo and venture capitalists. Wonderful food, content and people made for an outstanding conversation!

During Cluecon, I was able to drop in and catch Irv Shaprio’s speech, what follows are my live blogging notes of the session:

What does ifbyphone provide? Phone mashups – combine data from the world wide web with phone inputs and conversations.

ifbyphone goals:
– Technology Agnostic API – any language, host, data or location
– Dialog Support – Voice Forms (IVR), DTMF, Text to Speech, Automated Speech Recognition
– Call Management – outbound (termination), inbound (origination), Scheduling API, Broadcast API, Call Completion API
– Support Services – documentation, blog, user support forum, free development accounts and live support people

Lots of documentation is available, telephone scale

Phone mashup example – getting request from a form

Build a Voice Form Setup Form
Built in grammar allow branching of questions (Survo voice form setup)
ifbyphone uses forms instead of selectors for 100% reliability

Check out for more examples.

Marketing people are using this to put the telephone into the existing treatment processes.


Analysis: ifbyphone is enabling a bridge between web 2.0 and the phone. What I love about this is I think it’s part of a trend, removing silos to create effective solutions for companies and their customers. It’s small space with the potential to have large business impacts in terms of efficiency and customer satisfaction that will be fun to watch develop and watch who steps up to implement the solutions rapidly.

A recent interview of Irv can be found link now broken) here. I certainly look forward to seeing and learning more about how ifbyphone will be impacting business results shortly.

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Top Digg Users Show Wide Variance In Participation

Everyone knows that Digg users are highly social and many are familiar with the traditional ranking of popular posts and other data that is available on (data used in this post is as of 8/3/2008). Just for fun, I decided to toss this data into a spreadsheet and splice and dice it a bit to see what I might find.

After this exercise, I now think there are groups of Digg users with different tendencies. I’ll tentatively entitle these tendencies Super Socialites and Relevants – users who wait for can’t miss content. These users fall into two subcategories – High Submit Success and Infrequent Participation. Check out the wide variations in these new metrics sources, which are agnostic as to the tenure of the Digg  user:

Digg User   # Popular
MrBabyMan 2644
msaleem 1681
zaibatsu 1410
supernova17 1210
MakiMaki 1046
mklopez 913
skored 842
tomboy501 563
IvanB 485
pizzler 459

Digg User   High Submit Success Ratio
kevinrose 97.105%
FirstDigg 80.180%
haxr 63.095%
diggboss 61.184%
sepultura 60.773%
macbot 55.556%
openthink 52.301%
lazycat 50.314%
supernova17 49.187%

Digg User   Diggs per Popular  (lowest voting participation)
normalkid 7.373
tarkullu 15.327
macbot 19.133
lnfiniteLoop 20.118
mklopez 24.648
Vinvin 25.163
kevinrose 27.827
MrEMan 27.909
MrBabyMan 36.769

Digg User  Diggs per Popular (highest voting participation)
ShuTian 1025.769
numberneal 901.385
maxyRO 820.896
zoomtechtv 767.209
emberjohn 713.982
FamilyGuyFan 711.771
lekahe 679.068
vroom101 675.685
iching 563.242
Konstantino 554.347

While every change of the Digg algorithm, these rankings shift anew in unpredictable ways.  These new metrics show some clear differences in the tendencies of some Digg users. It would be be wise to pause and analyze these different types of Digg users and how their mixture of roles create value on Digg.