Happy New Year and welcome to the next decade - "the teenies,"
as some in the UK are calling it. Today is great day to take inventory
and think about what you want to accomplish in the new year - or even
the new decade. Over the next three days I will cover a few ideas that
anyone can ride to new heights in 2010 and beyond. These can help you
no matter what line of work you're in. Of course, given my world view,
they apply most to those interested in social media, marketing and
communications. Here's the first...
2010 to succeed as individuals and businesses we need to embrace
connecting with people globally on three levels: one-to-one, one-to-few
and one-to-many. As dancer Twyla Tharp describes in her new book The Collaborative Habit, great work comes through collaboration. Success requires thinking and acting on all three levels. And it means listening too.
Twitter, Facebook, Google Wave and the next big things in connecting
socially will allow us to innovate in how we connect with stakeholders,
colleagues and friends - and on all three levels. But some things never
go out of style. I get more email than ever - and I love it. Businesses
should too. Connecting offline remains important. Rosabeth Moss Kanter
calls this Management by Flying Around. So my advice is in 2010 vow to correspond to connect as much as you realistically can.
inspiration? How about Thomas Jefferson. Sure he connected with and
inspired millions with the Declaration of Independence's "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness." But he also answered his mail thousands of letters - connecting with countless others. He even devised a clever polygraph machine to keep copies of all correspondence.
"From sun-rise to one or two o'clock," he noted, "I am drudging at the
writing table." Jefferson wrote almost 20,000 letters in his lifetime,
among them, scholarly musings to colleagues, affectionate notes to his
family, and civil responses to admirers. He wrote John Adams
that he suffered "under the persecution of letters," calculating that
he received 1,267 letters in the year 1820, "many of them requiring
answers of elaborate research, and all to be answered with due
attention and consideration."
year, vow not to lose sight of the art and importance of daily
correspondence. Reach out to new people - even those you don't agree
with or those in other countries. Solicit and share new ideas.
for me, I try to answer any correspondence that deserves a response.
Sometimes it takes me time but I do so on three levels: my one-to-one
communications (email and Twitter direct messages), one-to-few
(Facebook comments, Twitter replies, etc.) and one-to-many (blog
comments, interview requests, etc.) I also reach out to new people as
well who I want to get to know better. Don't begrudge the volume of
communications, focus on it - but the right messages.
Wouldn't it be great if organizations and the people who work for them all aspired to live the same, just as Jefferson did.
I have always been an optimist -- and in recent years accomplished quite a bit of serenity -- but happiness is different, no? The idea of "happiness" as a project seems epicurean and intriguing. See if you like her blog as much as I do.
I will be doing this weekly for InfoWorld, giving VCs and IT folks the heads up on what to follow this week in the news.
Let me know what you think. For someone who hasn't saw me on TV since Good Morning America, get ready for a shock. You may not recognize me and my waist-length hair. No more bubble bop TV hair for me.
Thanks InfoWorld.com for the opportunity, the foresight and the platform! And don't forget to tune in early (perhaps as early as the weekend) to get an idea of what's coming up in tech before the rest of the world finds out..
And if you have a tip (confidential, if you like), please send them to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
and emailed me or posted publicly on this blog about it:
I just counted, and I have received more than 150 emails telling their stories.
So I have an idea. If 10 people email me and agree to participate as co-writers (with edit rights) of a new blog, Brush with Death, I will start it. We will then try actively to collect as many stories as possible. The end? Not sure. Might make a good book, certainly makes good reading.
So if you'd participate by publishing your story (as a co-writer with rights to post on this blog), email me. If I get 10, I'll start it on my dime.
If there is no interest, we'll leave it at that. An idea that remains just that. Happy Saturday!
My friend, Guy Kawasaki, FINALLY has a blog. He's going to have a lot to say, I bet. I wish he would link to this page, but I'm not holding my breath. He is a busy guy. He once told me that if I ever have to cancel an appointment with him, please do! He needs the breathing time.
But I will link to his us.
p.s. That Film Loop product he is talking about is AMAZING.
One of my favorite bloggers at Swamplog has some interesting news. If you are in the Texas area, know that you know somebody who knows somebody who's going to be singing the national anthem at a big game in Texas. It is so important to celebrate successes, much more so than to bemoan failures. I really believe this is a secret to serentity, if not mental health. But enough preaching from me, here is an excerpt from Swamplog with the big news. Congratulations from IGS!
I got the call today that the Texas Rangers want me to sing the National Anthem.
They must have liked my audition, because I'm doing it during the first homestand in Arlington. It'll be on Monday, April 18, before the first game against the Oakland Athletics.
Honestly, between the feedback I got from Woody and other people, and the feeling I had after I finished, I thought I had a pretty good shot at making the cut. That said, I still was really pleasantly surprised that I made the grade.
The truth hurts, and now that Dubya is maxed out on terms, he doesn't care who knows about his past. Yet people are still trying to protect his "integrity." Funny, no one was that thin-skinned with Clinton's blow job penchant.
We're getting to the point in America where free speech isn't just a lofty ideal, but a bona fide endangered concept. The FCC is getting Congressional approval to raise single-offense indecency fines to $500,000. Think about that for a moment -- if a broadcaster has a "questionable" show in the FCC's view, they could issue two million dollars in fines for four incidents over a period of time. Rather than try to defend the air talent, the person gets fired and gets blacklisted in the industry. The broadcaster appeals the decision, and risks bankruptcy if the appeal fails.
The trick is... there's no solution in sight. The FCC are all appointed by the sitting President and confirmed by Congress, so the public has no say in who becomes the "gatekeepers of decency."
It will be interesting to see how Bill Gates' blog turns out. I've included an excerpt from his welcome message, below.
Do you think Bill will reveal anything down and dirty?
I can tell you that I've met Bill on several occasions -- he's a good interview -- but he rarely gives you the inside glimpse. I am sure reporters everywhere will be watching this on the long shot he does. (Not being a reporter anymore, I'll be following on the hopes that he includes his reading list. He reads lots of biotech and physics, like I do. Or so I hear. So maybe I'll get some good reading suggestions.)
Then again, there is the very real likelihood that someone at Waggener-Edstrom (his agency) will take over authorship. And then it becomes just a PR channel.
At any rate, it is interesting. And we'll see!
Longhorn Clock Developement
First of all, I must say that I am happy to join you in using this interesting brand new technique called Blog (Soon to be called MDD - Microsoft Digital Diary). Here i want to keep you up to date with the new and interesting things that keep happening here at Microsoft.
In the past days, we had overwhelming success with our Windows XP Service Pack 2 and Windows Server 2003 marketing strategy by compromising old IIS Systems to infiltrate even fully patched Clients running Internet Explorer.
Last week i spent my time reprogramming the Clock for Microsoft's upcoming operating system, code-named Longhorn. Though I still have to cope with some errors, i put up a screenshot here. Maybe someone can help me with this?
This morning's "blog check" alerted me to the fact that someone reached my weblog by googling the phrase "satan toaster." Hee! Aisle 666, between the Lucifer Fruit Dehydrator and the El Diablo Quesadilla Press. Thank you for shopping at Home Despot.
If "everybody" did it, why would I be doing it? Sheesh.
NEW YORK - Despite the potential of turning every Internet user into a publisher, relatively few have created Web journals called blogs and even fewer do so with regularly, a new study finds.
Some bloggers indeed update their journals often, in some cases several times a day. But it's clearly a minority who are taking advantage of the blog and its potential to steer the online discourse with personal musings about news events and daily life.
The Pew Internet and American Life Project, in a study released Sunday, found that somewhere between 2 percent and 7 percent of adult Internet users in the United States actually keep their own blogs.
Of those, only about 10 percent update them daily, the majority doing so only once a week or less often.
This trend is solid. A look at Columbia Journalism Review's recent listing of traditional-media blogs shows everyone getting into the act: ABC News, FOX, National Review, The New Republic, The Christian Science Monitor, The Boston Globe, The Wall Street Journal, and so on. The blogging boosters, meanwhile, are rooting like high-school cheerleaders over this development. To them, it's some sort of affirmation. In fact, it's a death sentence. The onerous Big Media incursion marks the beginning of the end for blogging. Can you spell co-opted?
I'm reminded of the early days of personal computing, which began as a mini-revolution with all sorts of idealism. Power to the people, dude. IBM was epitomized as the antithesis of this revolution. But when IBM jumped on board in 1981 and co-opted the entire PC scene, it was cheered. Welcome, brother! Apple even took out a semiflippant full-page national newspaper ad welcoming IBM. Actually, the ad reflected Apple's neediness and low self-esteem. IBM represented affirmation about as much as Big Media is affirmation for the hopeless bloggers.
Another so-called revolution bites the dust. Big surprise.
Thanks to the excellent blog outerlife, I found this: The Washington Post's recent article on blogging.
Blogging, argues author Jennifer Howard, once seemed fresh. It was the "ultimate outsider activity." Now it's an "insider" activity with bloggers being over-impressed with their own opinions and that of other bloggers.
What began as the ultimate outsider activity -- a way to break the newspaper and TV stranglehold on the gathering and dissemination of information -- is turning into the same insider's game played by the old establishment media the bloggerati love to critique. The more blogs you read and the more often you read them, the more obvious it is: They've fallen in love with themselves, each other and the beauty of what they're creating. The cult of media celebrity hasn't been broken by the Internet's democratic tendencies; it's just found new enabling technology.
Seeing his blog through his mother's eyes, Widmar said he knows there's no way the site can remain unchanged.
"I know Mom will instantly become the site's most avid reader and most vocal fan," Widmar said. "As I write it, I'll think, 'How would Mom feel about this?' Even worse, I'm sure she'll give the address to all our relatives."
All of the tactics Widmar has considered to divert his mother seem unworkable.
"I could take it down for a few weeks, but I know she wouldn't just forget about it," Widmar said. "I could edit the site and send my other readers through a back door, to another blog just for them. But, I mean, that's just ridiculous."
If Widmar starts a blog at a new address, without his full name this time, he said he risks losing "close to 100" regular readers.
As of press time, Widmar had not decided whether to shut PlanetKevin down.
"The clock is ticking," Widmar said. "I've gotta act fast. At this very minute, she might be reading about the time I did Ecstasy last summer. If Mom finds that entry, I can pretty much count on our conversations for the next year being centered on the dangers of drug use."