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An Interview on New Media (Part Three)

I was recently interviewed by Alexa Lee of The Daily Universe, Brigham Young University’s student newspaper, for an article she was writing about twentysomethings who are successful at using new media as business ventures. I have provided a sneak peak of the article below. (Please note: This is the last of a three part series –  Read part one and part two.)

What do you recommend for those trying to break into and incorporate web 2.0 and other technologies?

I have three tips that can help both individuals and organizations be successful in adopting these new tools:

First and foremost, don’t try to do everything and be everywhere right away. Start off small, perhaps by setting up a Facebook profile. Once you’ve really mastered one platform add something to your “regime” and then once you have a handle on the two, add another component, and so on.

Be consistent across all platforms. For example, pick one picture to represent you online and use that anywhere you are asked for a picture. Choose one form of your name – don’t go by Billy in one place and William in another. In essence, you are building an online identity. (This is easier for organizations – they should already have a brand identity established.)

Be aware that everything you put on the web can be found, so be on your best behavior at all times. That may seem like common sense, but when we’re typing on a computer and not talking to a person, we forget how much of our online activity is public. There was a recent case where a Ketchum VP insulted his Fedex Client through a Tweet and consequently tarnished his personal reputation as well as that of his firm. (A summary of the incident can be found here.)

Why does new media matter?

We used to have a physical water cooler around which we shared news, caught up on the latest gossip, and provided recommendations. With today’s distributed workforce and the resulting dispersed personal and professional networks, that activity has shifted online and the conversations we have are being facilitated by new media. In order to participate in the conversation, in order to provide your input, in order to raise awareness about you as a person, the organization you represent, or the cause you fight for, you have no choice but to use these new tools.

An Interview on New Media (Part One)

I was recently interviewed by Alexa Lee of The Daily Universe, Brigham Young University’s student newspaper, for an article she was writing about twentysomethings who are successful at using new media as business ventures. I have provided a sneak peak of the article below.

(Please note: This is the first in a three part series – for the next two weeks I’ll post an additional questions that I was asked along with my answers.)

What got you started in new media?

I’ve always been an early adopter of technology and have found the internet to be a powerful place to connect with people in my offline social circle as well as to expand my network by finding people around the world who share the same interests – both personally and professionally. That being said, for me, exploring new media was a natural progression of trying online tools as they emerge. First it was instant messaging, then blogs, RSS feeds, social networks, etc.

Why do you think people use new media, why do you use new media, how do you use new media?

I think that people use new media for all the same reasons people use traditional media. These reasons include staying up-to-date on current events, connecting with friends, all sorts of research, etc. The fundamental concepts are all the same, it’s just that the tools have changed.

I use a variety of online tools to strengthen and to expand my network. Using Facebook and LinkedIn, I stay in touch with classmates, colleagues and other contacts I’ve made along the way. Through Twitter, I discover people with similar interests in my area and around the world and have immediate access to world changing events as they happen. Each site, in its own unique way, enables me to connect with thought leaders to create a community of professionals sharing resources and ideas, and that is truly empowering. Finally, my website serves as my online epicenter where all my online interactions come together. The blog I have there allows me to document my life and share my views.

Hidden Secrets of the iPhone Revealed

David**The following is a guest post by David, a good friend and former colleague, who loves finding hidden features of the technology he uses. Below, he reveals a few iPhone features you may have missed. (The original post can be found here.)**

Okay, that’s a bit too Penn & Telller perhaps, but there are some fun little nuggets somewhat buried in the iPhone that I’ve slowly been discovering.  I feel like in the past month especially I’ve dug up some good stuff.  I’ll start off with the stuff that most folks know.  If you didn’t, great.  If you did, I never said I was the great Houdini 🙂

Special Characters
We all know that you can find some add’l characters by tapping the 123 then the #+= button on the keyboard.  This provides us with some European currency characters, as well as the important hash tag for twitter.  But what about the eñe in spanish?  Or the upside down exclamation point for spanish?  If you simply tap and hold the “n” on the keyboard, the ñ will appear.  Same with the accented letter “e” or the exclamation point.  If you play around, you’ll find other fun hidden characters lurking above the letters (ooh, m-dash!).

Keyboard Settings: Periods & Caps Lock
I’ll admit it.  I never really got into the whole text speak.  Sure I LOL and might wonder WTF occasionally.  I am also a fan of FML – makes me laugh when I see it.   But I don’t write “Wr U @? C U L8r.”  With full keyboards, the inner English Major in me just can’t stomach it.  I write things out.  I tend to still use proper sentence structure.  Call me fusty, but I can’t help it.

So I like that if I double-space after a word, I get a period.  That makes it nice and easy.  And while I’m not a big YELLER when it comes to texting, there are times when you want to write a bit in Caps.  And hitting the shift key each time is tedious.  There are settings for both these features.

Go to Settings>General>Keyboard.  Toggle “Enable Caps Lock” and “‘.’ Shortcut” to On.  Now when you double-space after a word, the period pops in.  And if you quickly double-tap the shift key, it’ll turn blue and Caps Lock is on.  Pretty nifty.

Contacts View
I mentioned I’m a little old-fashioned.  I can also be a little OCD too.  I have set up my iPhone Contacts to sync with my Google Contacts.  I like having a back-up and over-air syncing is still pretty cool to me.  But the other day I realized I had 6 more contacts in my iPhone than I did in my Google Contacts.  Quite frankly, I’m still confused how this happened.  But to make matters worse, Google Contacts are sorted by first name.  My iPhone Contacts were sorted by last name.  Trying to eyeball over 400 contacts is tough enough, but when the lists aren’t apples to apples, it’s even harder.  Enter Settings.  Settings>Mail, Contacts, Calendar.  If you scroll to the Contacts section (near the bottom), you’ll see that you can change both the Sort Order and Display Order.  While I prefer to sort by last name, it’s nice to be able to toggle this when comparing to Google.  I’m sure there are other benefits to this toggle as well.

I’d seen plenty of people showing their Weather app image on Facebook to indicate a crappy/fantastic week of weather ahead.  I just presumed they had purchased some app that enabled this.  Nope.  The iPhone has a built-in screenshot feature.  Which I think is pretty cool. When you have what you want on your screen, simply push the top button and the bottom home button on your iPhone quickly at the same time.  The screen will quickly fade and come back.  That image is now saved in your Photos.  Pretty nifty.  It is great when you happen to be in 1st place in foursquare or something and you might want to share that with your friends 🙂


I heard at&t will finally be supporting the updated MMS features on September 25th.  I’m looking forward to that.  I’ll be happy if I never see the following screen againg – scribbling down those ridiculous message ids and passwords – only to open a picture of someone’s dog.


Any hidden secrets that you’d like to share?