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17 posts from March 2007

March 31, 2007

Stop Cyberbullying Links To Know

I went for a visit to my cyber-friend Mir's blog to see if she is over with her flu, when I saw her post mentioning cyberbullying day (March 30). That was yesterday, but the subject is important enough to keep spreading the word. So here is a list of the links I could find; please read it, spread the word and show support for Kathy Sierra:

UPDATED 4/2/01:

Cross posted at the Silicon Valley Moms Blog

March 30, 2007

Virtual Vacation with The Silent "I"

March07 I met Glennia originally because she is one of the contributors of the Silicon Valley Moms Blog. Then I started reading her personal blog: The Silent "I", Glennia's adventures: foreign and domestic. Being a mom of three boys, including twin preschoolers has made it tough for me to travel. So visiting her blog is a virtual vacation for me.  Her travel index offers a taste of many places across the world: Greenland, Oahu, Mammoth Cave National Park, Galapagos Islands and the list goes on... Her writing is so rich it takes you along for the journey.

Best of all, she talks about traveling as a family with her husband and son - which is giving me the courage to start thinking about traveling with my sons (and I need lots). Glennia is honest about the excitement and the challenges. I choose her post on "Kauai: The Garden Island" for the March Perfect Post awards at Suburban Turmoil  and Petroville even though it was in February because I am still thinking about it. The post starts out giving a taste of the area's beauty:

"What we didn't expect was that we would both fall ass-over-tea kettle in love with the place, with Kalapaki Beach, the view from our balcony, the giant swimming pool with its dizzying array of spitting fountains, the tropical garden and the ginormous koi pond--all of it."

And then the challenges of taking her son to the beach while her husband is taking a nap. I felt the same way she did when I just took my older son to the beach, fearful but also wanting to support his independence (after proper swim lessons):

"I'm not sure when I became such a buzz-kill, but I believe it was at the moment that I gave birth and was bestowed the title "mother."  All I could think of was, "thank God you did not drown" and had to put aside my somewhat irrational fear to say, "Please don't go out so far."

Everyone learned a good lesson and went on to have a great night together. And I had alittle taste-o-Kauai. I really enjoyed the pictures of her son running by the beach, I could almost hear those waves crashing and smell the sea air. If they had the perfect vlog awards, I may add in my favorite virtual vacation vlog: Beach Walks with Rox.

Put the Silent "I" and Beach Walks with Rox together, and you have the perfect virtual vacation....

A Son Who Cried, Concerned Parents With a YouTube Dilemna

"Why won't you let me watch videos on YouTube!" sniffle, sniffle, cry, cry, said oldest (8 year old) son.

"Because some of the videos are not appropriate for children, so we need to go on that site together" said concerned parents (my husband and I). They wondered what similar things they cried about as a child, but could not think of anything.

"You can watch a few videos before school tomorrow morning if you go to bed now" said concerned dad feeling relieved that he found a good bargaining tool to use with his son.

Concerned dad searched YouTube that night and found funny Diet Coke + Mentos video (by the way, credos to Diet Coke and Mentos for creative marketing and a new spin on the standard vinegar & baking soda volcano experiment even if they had nothing to do with the video ).

The next morning.....

Concerned dad used watching YouTube videos as a bargaining tool to have son get dressed, eat breakfast, brush his teeth, be nice to his brothers, and promise to listen for the rest of his life. Concerned mom was very proud of concerned dad for his advanced negotiation skills, but was somewhat worried that she would be cleaning Diet Coke off of every surface in the backyard very soon.

Oldest son and twin preschool brothers watched the Diet Coke + Mentos video, but asked to watch Pokemon next. All the boys enjoyed the Pokemon video the best, an innocent video with still pictures of characters with the theme song running in the background.


Concerned parents took out oldest son's wireless card on his laptop and only allow him use internet use on family computer with parents in the room. The family computer has K9 Web Protection parental control software installed, which initially restricted access to YouTube. They allowed access to YouTube (using administrator level access that oldest son does not have the password to) because they really like the funny videos.

March 28, 2007

Do you Twitter with your friends?

Twitter The web 2.0 world has brought many new and exciting ways to communicate with your friends online - without speaking a word. Twitter is the new social networking buzz; it allows users to send a sentence or two about what they are doing at that moment, using their moble phone, instant message or by entering it into an online form on the Twitter site. Here is the help and lingo page that has more info on how Twitter works. You can also learn juicy tidbits at the Twitter blog. The privacy features allow you to either add your twitter to the public timeline or to the friends that you invite. If you wonder "Why everyone's talking about Twitter"check out the Time magazine article. The article brings up the lingo "microblogging or moblogging" for what users are doing with Twitter; it is a quick way to do a micro-micro blog post (two sentences) for those who do not have time to blog.

I first heard about Twitter at BlogHer Business 07 last week. I knew I had to try it, so I set up a profile but then was shy to start. I wondered what I should talk about. Then blogger celeb GraceD invited me to be her friend (which I was honored), so I decided to do my first twitter to her. What do you know, I am blogging about microblogging.

This may be a fun way for moms to commuincate with a group of friends, local or anywhere in the world. If your teens mention being interesting in using Twitter, I would suggest that they only allow their group of friends to read their twitters. Twitter's terms of use state that users must be 13 years of age or older.

March 27, 2007

Mama needs a Job?, go Online

There are many ways for moms to get back in the working world. I did that through setting up a blog and joining BlogHer. Finding the right network is very important for finding a job. Many of my friends use LinkedIn to start setting up an online network. Jobs are posted on the main sites like Monster.com and also on company sites, but some moms need part time work because they are the main caregivers of their children. And working part time provides the flexility to help with work life balance issues. Here are two of the sites that I know of that are relevant for part-time work. Please comment if there are others out there....

1. Charlene Li passed on this site to me: MyPartTimePro.com. This site was set up by Philadelphia area "mom-preneur" Ilyse Shapiro.

2. If you are a techie and want to get work, join organizations like ProNet, that are professional networks for a specific software platform. ProNet is a network of professionals that consult on Movable Type, TypePad, and TypeKey platforms. I am sure there are other professional networks out there for those interested.

3. WAHM.com is a site listing jobs for working at home moms.

March 25, 2007

Blogging Software, so Many Choices...

So you want to enter the blogosphere? For a personal hobby, business, or for family communication? Here is a listing of the blog software (that I know about). I am a big Typepad fan, quick to implement and easy to use. Movable Type is better for more sophisticated sites. I have friends that use WordPress and Blogger and are also happy. Vox is great for people that want more privacy; you can control which posts are for the public or private to your groups of friends/family (whom you invite). Did I miss any???

March 20, 2007

BlogHer Business Live-blogging: How to Keep Out of Real Trouble

Blogherbus2_2 I am at New York for the BlogHer Business conference. The conference will answer the question: How can Businesses Succeed in a Social Media World?

The Day Two track "How Do I Get It Right the First Time? " has three sessions that will be live-blogged. The first, "Should I blog?", is listed on the Silicon Valley Moms Blog. Session two is here, listed below is session three.The full list of live-blog posts  and Speaker bios are listed on the BlogHer site. 

How to Keep Out of Real Trouble

A closer look at those top legal and P.R. questions every business owner or exec has before kicking off a social media program. Cautionary tales and how to avoid becoming one.

Marianne Richmond, the moderator, writes the Resonance Partnership Blog, Conversational Media Group Blog and is the Technology and Web Contributing Editor for BlogHer. She interviewed:


Marianne Richmond: How many people blog? How many people blog for a corporation? How many own their own businesses? People that run their own business (blog) have different needs then a corporate blog. There are legal and ethic issues, and crossing the line is a big issue. Best practices are important. How to stay out of trouble means that you plan to stay out of trouble. 

Audience member: I know I can get sued for anything, but what can I be sued for?

Karen Wickre: Context is everything. 

Nina Kaufman: Two categories that independent bloggers need to be concerned about:

  • Defamation. Be careful that you are not libeling people, be truthful. If you say “In my opinion George Bush’s policies in Iraq are just a front for business deals”, then you may be in trouble. You want to temper it for a business context.
  • Copyright: You need to be judicious on what you use from other people. You need to be original. Copyright laws want to encourage debate, but not taking someone’s work in whole. 

Continue reading "BlogHer Business Live-blogging: How to Keep Out of Real Trouble" »

BlogHer Business Live-blogging: How to Embrace the Social Media Culture

Blogherbus2 I am visiting New York for the BlogHer Business conference. The conference will  answer the question: How can Businesses Succeed in a Social Media World?

 The Day Two track: "How Do I Get It Right the First Time?" has three sessions that will be live blogged. Listed below is information for session two. Speaker bios and the full list of live-blog links are listed on the BlogHer site. The other two sessions of this track are listed here and here (Silicon Valley Moms Blog).

How to Embrace the Social Media Culture

They will take a closer look at these questions:

  • Who should blog for your company?
  • How do you enact €œ"authenticity"€?
  • How much "€I"€™ is "€˜TMI"€™?

Maria Niles moderates this discussion between Yahoo! Corporate blog editor Nicki Dugan, FastCompany.com editor Lynne D. Johnson and Weblogs Inc editor Karen Walrond (her blog is Chookooloonks).

Here are my apologies in advance (thanks Jen Lemen for the idea): for misspelling, missed names and other tragedies of being in a rush. Everything is a serious approximation of what was said.


How to Embrace the Social Media Culture

Maria Niles: Welcome everyone, we will going to get started.

(Speaker Introductions)

Nicki Dugan. I run the corporate blog Yodel Anecdotal. The corporate blog is the umbrella and the product blogs are vertical. 55 employees contribute to the blogs. 

Lynne Johnson: I have a personal blog for 6 years, I am Senior Editor of the FastCompany website but I also manage the staff blog (news related). We also have FC expert blogs where we recruit technology, leadership, and so on. It is my job to put our guidelines and help the blog sound like FastCompany. 

Karen Walrond: I am with Weblogs Inc, My blog chookooloonks chronicles how my daughter came into my life. Weblogs inc’s products are our blogs (including Engadget, Styledash, Blogging Baby, Slashfood). We make money on advertising. 

Nina Belcher: I am a lawyer that represents clients that are afraid to blog. They ask “How could that not blow up on us?”. How can blogging help larger companies? 

Nicki Dugan: It was hard to talk our legal team into doing a blog, because there is so little control you have about what comes back to you. I told them that people are already talking about us, blogs give us a chance to join in on the conversation. We have guidelines and a review process. We worked in partnership with the legal team, and tried to be edgy. The more reverent we are the more well received it will be. It took a couple of weeks to click for them that it was not such a scary place.  We had an innocent blog posting about a new feature, Digg fashion thumbs up and thumbs down on new features. Digg fans felt that we stole something from them. The comments started to turn the tide: “Isn’t it a good idea that Yahoo gave users a voice in product features”. It turned into a positive experience. 

Karen: I was also a lawyer, and I keep hearing people say “those darn lawyers”. But I am also a blogger so I see both sides. The authenticity of voice is very powerful. You should not just get anyone off the street to blog for your company. You need someone that has a good understanding of what the goals of the corporations are (even if they are not writing about the goals). So they know what is risky, then the corporation needs to let the writer go – you need to offer them a certain amount of trust. There are SEC guidelines that require training, but trust is important. 

Continue reading "BlogHer Business Live-blogging: How to Embrace the Social Media Culture " »

March 19, 2007

What is a Wiki and Should it be Banned at School?

Tube Have you been hearing the word "wiki" and wonder what it is? Here is part of the answer: "it is a website that allows visitors to add, remove, edit and change content, typically without the need for registration". I found this information in none other then "Wikipedia", which is the best example of a wiki.  A recent post in a Computerworld blog claimed Wikipedia as a victim:

"Here's the newest from Sen. Ted Stevens, the man who described the Internet as a series of tubes: It's time for the federal government to ban access to Wikipedia, MySpace, and social networking sites from schools and libraries."

Now now, looks like someone does not understand Wikipedia (Senator Stevens). This site is an amazing resource for information and should be shared with children. By your logic, we should also ban encyclopedias from libraries.... Oh Mr. Stevens, one more thing - here is your link in Wikipedia. I went there to find out more information about you. I found it very helpful.

I have also seen wiki's used for event sign-ups. A friend of mine wants to create a wiki to list good local summer camps.  Here is the list of the wiki software avaliable (I have used social text before).  And just in case you have not had enough, here is a list of wikis.

Having a conversation about limiting access using some sort of parental controls at the school library computer is one thing, Throwing all social networking sites (like Wikipedia) in one bucket is another, and wrong.

Crossposted at the Silicon Valley Moms Blog

March 18, 2007

Sunday Morning BuzzFeed

Originally posted at the Silicon Valley Moms Blog

One of the fun sites we follow is BuzzFeed. The site crawls 50,000  web sites, blogs, and news sources and lists top buzz topics. They listed Tekla from the Silicon Valley Moms Blog when she commented on the Baby Einstein creater being honored by Bush. Here is a taste of some of the fun buzz I saw this morning that touched on our own Silicon Valley:



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