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Life, In Digital

Digital Life IS Real Life

Tag Archives: Twitter

Last month I decided to take a break from social media. I bid my social world “adieu” on Facebook, Instagram, Foursquare, Pinterest, Twitter, and Vine and turned my focus to offline interactions.

As I thought about giving up social media for a while, I also thought about what I would be able to do with all of this new “thought space”:

  • journal
  • practice my handwriting
  • read (books & Bible)
  • think
  • call people to catch up
  • complete tasks on my to-do list
  • pray

I wanted to get away from always needing to hold my cell phone. I wanted to know what time it was without looking at my phone…maybe I’d use my watch as more than just an accessory. I wanted to walk from my desk to the bathroom without having to take my phone with me. I wanted to sit and think instead of mindlessly scroll, post, like, share, scroll, post, like, share… I wanted to need to call people to catch up on life instead of leaning on a Facebook relationship. I wanted to write three sentences without my hand cramping up. I wanted to read my handwriting. I wanted to serve God and serve Him in private instead of seeking likes and comments for my good works. I wanted to clearly communicate my thoughts instead of only speaking one “post” at a time. I wanted to stop thinking in 140 characters. I wanted to be more focused and deliberate. I wanted to create instead of just comment on life.

I don’t belive that social media is bad. There is a lot of good that comes from being constantly connected to your friends and loved ones. There is a lot of good in the collective thoughts of a community. There is a lot of good in the quick and efficient communication. However, I do believe that social media has made me weaker in other areas. The greatest impact has been on my imagination. I used to sit and entertain myself with my thoughts, but I am evermore preoccupied with scrolling, posting, updating, etc. My social media apps on my iPhone are my go-to entertainment and it is rarely high-quality time spent.

After a week and a half without Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Vine, Foursquare, or Pinterest...I'm back! Taking time away from social media has given me an opportunity to reevaluate the content I'm creating and the time I spend doing it. You'll be happy (I hope) to know that Pinterest made the cut. See ya around!

After a week and a half without Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Vine, Foursquare, or Pinterest…I’m back! Taking time away from social media has given me an opportunity to reevaluate the content I’m creating and the time I spend doing it. You’ll be happy (I hope) to know that Pinterest made the cut. See ya around!

I have since re-joined the social world, but I am more aware of how I spend my time, who I “follow”, and what I say. The key, I’ve found, is to be deliberate in how you use social media and to re-learn how to communicate outside of a status update.


Have you ever taken a break from social media? What did you learn from it? What did you miss about your social accounts?


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  • Attendees pay a significant amount of money to attend an event.
  • A speaker takes several hours to prepare for the event.
  • Attendees spend the entire event looking down at their phones and tablets.

Is there a disconnect here? Are attendees not paying attention, or worse, being disrespectful? Chances are that they are engaging in a new way – either Tweeting or following a Twitter stream for the event.

Attendees are already Tweeting. Make it easier for them.

Provide a hashtag for your event

If you offer an event hashtag from the beginning, users won’t have to go through the confusing and disjointed process of crowdsourcing their own hashtag. One common hashtag makes it easier for you to follow conversations about your event and for attendees to join the conversation.

Provide a unique hashtag for every panel/presentation

This is especially important if you have multiple presentations throughout your event. The hashtag is important for the same reasons mentioned above, but having a unique one for each presentation allows those conversations to stand out from the general event conversation.

Seed your crowd

People tweet more when there is more tweeting going on. Quote speakers, ask questions, and re-tweet attendees’ comments.

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These are the ten things I’m thinking about (in no particular order).

  1. SXSW
  2. First Impressions
  3. Lasting Impressions
  4. Digital Atlanta (Twitter and Facebook accounts)
  5. Archiving Social Media
  6. STS – 134
  7. Tagging
  8. Content Curation
  9. Online Privacy
  10. My New iPad

What’s on your mind? What are you trying to figure out?

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I wrote a book on Twitter. Well, to be more clear: I wrote a book using Twitter.

A year ago, using, I had all of my tweets printed into a book called, @lizzerb: a microbiography. It’s 160 pages of all of my tweets from the very first tweet:

“excited about birthday dinner! logan’s steakhouse…yummm” Thu Apr 02 22:29:26 2009

to one a year later:

“Birthday = family, Starbucks, pedicure, sushi, shopping, boyfriend, P.F. Changs, puppies & sleep. It was a great day!!” Sat Apr 03 03:39:22 2010

Now, why would I want to do this? For $18.99, why not? It’s pretty cool to have all of your tweets printed into a book. It’s definitely got that novelty factor and has sparked several conversations with friends and co-workers.

Recently, I’ve been looking for a Facebook equivalent. I wanted to be able to take all of my online conversations and preserve them in a tangible format. There’s something to be said for sitting down and flipping through a book. It’s like going back and reading your journal. It has all of your thoughts, frustrations, celebrations, and commentary on life. Especially when you tweet and update your Facebook status as often as I do about personal and professional experiences; this book would be my journal. It would show my life. If (Heaven forbid) Facebook were to close down overnight, all of my status would be lost. I’d have no record of those microjournaling updates.

At first all I found was this and this, but neither were really what I wanted. Then, I found Rachel Cunliffe at Social Archivist. She’s been working on the same concept and created the answer I’ve been searching for! Rachel, a blog and community site designer at cre8d design, created a “semi-automated service which creates a physical diary rich with photos, comments and memories” from Facebook. I still can’t believe how perfectly it matches what I’ve been wanting. Like This Book launched in January 2011 and can be professionally printed for $14.95. In the press release for Like This Book, here is what Rachel had to say was her inspiration:

Even if I have fool-proof back-ups of my status updates on my computer or online, that doesn’t leave me a user-friendly way to reminisce over my life or leave something for my kids to flip through one day. Life on the internet is geared for right now and often not for the distant future.

This is something I am definitely going to purchase. It is great for yourself or as a gift for those friends that are addicted to Facebook. Make your own book here and like it on Facebook here.

Like This Book, logo

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These are the ten things I’m thinking about (in no particular order).

  1. Gamestorming
  2. Printing Twitter and Facebook Posts
  3. SXSW
  4. WOM & WOMMA Ethics
  5. Tagging
  6. Content Curation
  7. Online Privacy
  8. Personalized Search Results vs. Serendipity
  9. Future of Education
  10. 9-5 Tweeting
  11. BONUS – My Birthday! (it’s tomorrow)

What’s on your mind? What are you trying to figure out?

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So, @KennethCole screwed up and almost instantly became another case study for those of us in social media.

At around 10 AM, Kenneth Cole (-KC) tweeted: “Millions are in uproar in #Cairo. Rumor is they heard our new spring collection is now available online at -KC”

Kenneth Cole Tweet

It took an hour for him to respond to that, tweeting: “Re Egypt tweet: we weren’t intending to make light of a serious situation. We understand the sensitivity of this historic moment – KC”

An hour after @KennethCole’s tweet, a new (and very @BPGlobalPR-esque) Twitter account was born: @KennethColePR, which already has over 2,000 followers at the time of this post and is rising every minute.

Kenneth Cole PR Tweet

Social media moves fast. Really, really fast. How many times do we have to learn this lesson: Think before you Tweet!

UPDATE: As I was writing this post, Kenneth Cole released a response on the Kenneth Cole Facebook page Discussion board. It currently has 76 comments.

I apologize to everyone who was offended by my insensitive tweet about the situation in Egypt. I’ve dedicated my life to raising awareness about serious social issues, and in hindsight my attempt at humor regarding a nation liberating themselves against oppression was poorly timed and absolutely inappropriate.

Kenneth Cole, Chairman and Chief Creative Officer

10 minutes ago · Report  



It’s clear what he did wrong, but what about the things he did right? He didn’t show up on Twitter overnight and start blasting nonsense. In fact he was anticipating their 1,000th tweet, which ended up as the apology for his insensitive, and now infamous, tweet.

  • The @KennethCole Twitter account is well branded.
  • The bio discloses who is tweeting from the account (Bio: Thoughts that end in -KC are from me personally; others are behind the seams insights from my inspiring associates.)
  • The account is regularly updated with relevant links & thoughts.
  • The “inspiring associates” are often the ones responding to feedback on his behalf, but there is a conversation taking place.

This is another opportunity for brands (and individuals) to take a step back and remember that every tweet matters. There’s always someone out there reading what you are saying, especially if you are a big brand. After putting in all the money, time and effort it takes to create a place for consumers to engage with you online, you have to be very careful with what you say and how you say it.

Tweet Responsibly.

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