Saturday, December 19, 2009

Woman tweets as young son dies from drowning

A woman has been condemned for posting tweets on Twitter as her young son died after falling in the family pool.

While I think it's a little unfair to be harshly critical - particularly since it's happened so recently - it is surprising that someone would have the inclination to do this in the middle of such a traumatic event.

Just goes to show how big a part these social networking sites play in people's lives nowadays.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Cries for help on Facebook

As Facebook continues to grow there are more and more stories in the media about how its members are using it to communicate their feelings of desperation. Sadly, sometimes these messages are not heeded, and tragedy results.

But often the message is very clear and the alerted friends take immediate action to help the user. A good example is the case of a Swedish woman who was being held at knifepoint in her apartment. She managed to describe her dire situation on Facebook, and friends who saw the message called the cops. And while she did manage to escape her assailant on her own, he was ultimately arrested. This probably wouldn't have happened had she not managed to alert her friends online.

This story illustrates yet again the centrality of the site in the lives of so many people. But it also reveals just how adept they are at using computers. The woman in question must have been nimble-fingered indeed to type the status update with the man right there in the apartment!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Are keywords in the domain name helpful for SEO?

Though I have been blogging for a while, I haven't given that much thought to domain names. But I have been looking into this subject a bit more in recent months.

One thing that you often read on forums and blogs is people asking whether having keywords in your domain name is good for SEO. As with so many questions related to the subject, there's a lot of difference of opinion.

But from what I can tell from promoting this site and others, using them in your domain definitely does help. Clearly, I haven't used keywords with this site. That's mainly because when I started it I wasn't quite sure of its direction, so I didn't have any particular keywords in mind. I just chose something meaningless but (hopefully) catchy.

While I am gradually pulling in more and more traffic from long tail keyword searches, it has been frustrating. I suspect that this is mainly to do with the fact that there are just so many SEO and marketing blogs out there. Still, I think the lack of keywords doesn't help.

I have two other sites that do have keywords in their domains. They are in competitive niches also, but they have crawled up the rankings more quickly. So I'm pretty sure that this must have something to do with it.

Another Facebook non-fan

When I wrote about how much I disliked Facebook, I thought I was one of only a few. But it seems more and more people are really getting annoyed with it.

Toady, I read an amusing article in the Daily Telegraph. The writer seems to have had a lot more to do with it than I have, but she is similarly unimpressed.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Social media burnout a growing phenomenon

I'm not into social media for various reasons. But the main one is that I just don't have the time and energy for it. Keeping up to date with online news, blog commentary and then writing my own blogs is already too much for me. So I just don't understand how people can do all that and participate enthusiastically in sites like Twiiter and Facebook as well.

Maybe it's a generation thing. Perhaps oldies like me (I'm 45) just don't have the mental flexibility that youngsters who grew up in the age of the internet have.

Whatever the reason, it does seem that people are starting to overdose on sites like these. The term "social media burnout" does get a lot of results with those exact keywords in page titles. So clearly more and more people are suffering from this.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Ezine Articles directory traffic

Just another thought on article directories: I logged into Ezine Articles and saw that my articles had now been viewed over 3000 times. This level of exposure is several times greater than any of the other major directories I submit to. The site just gets monster traffic.

Then there is the SEO benefit that I've observed. Of course it's hard to tell which directories work best for this, but there always seems to be improvement in the rankings some time after I've submitted to Ezine Articles.