April 8, 2009

Social media and your personal brand

Shira Lazar on social media and building relationships from JD Lasica on Vimeo.

JD LasicaIf I could point all the 18- to 29-year-olds in the land to one video about how the social media revolution has fundamentally reshaped power relationships and entrepreneurial opportunities, it would be to this 13-minute video riff with Shira Lazar.

I’ve been following Shira’s online pursuits for a couple of years — she posts videos from her Nokia phone at shiralazar.com — but I didn’t meet her until last month’s South By Southwest Interactive conference in Austin, Texas, and came away enormously impressed.

Shira, who’s based in Los Angeles but can often be seen at tech events everywhere, describes herself as “a crossover personality/hyperjournalist” who develops content for the Web and TV. (Hyper in the sense of modern, multifaceted and multimedia, rather than overcaffeinated.) [OK, Shira claims she said “hybrid journalist.” Maybe so. But hyper seems more apropos somehow. Besides, what’s a hybrid journalist? Half reporter, half tomato?]

She offers advice to those just starting out in the workforce or with a Web enterprise who don’t necessarily want to work for a big company: “Find your voice. That’s the most important thing: What makes you stand out?” Start blogging and twittering to develop your personal brand.

She also talks about how traditional news and entertainment media are now embracing this strange new world of social media. “They want to be in our club now. It’s pretty cool.”

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February 19, 2009

Bloggersbase: Where readers have influence

Ayelet NoffWith so much information on the internet today and the content continuously growing, it can be very difficult to discover an online media site where your voice can be heard.  Uncovering a place where you can make a difference and have an influence is even more difficult. A new Israeli start-up, BloggersBase.com hopes to fill that void.  This unique blogging platform is an online citizen journalism magazine that is powered by its readers. Here, readers and bloggers alike can discover top quality content while simultaneously influencing the magazine.

1BloggersBase.com is a competition-based content discovery platform where bloggers submit content on a variety of topics, and based on readers’ ratings, the highest quality content is discovered and featured on the site. The magazine consists of multi-authored blogs, each on a different subject.  There are four main topics categories: Entertainment, Technology, Lifestyle and World Affairs, containing together ten different blogs. Based on reader ratings and responses, the highest quality content is discovered and featured on the site.  The rating system is not the standard vote “up or down/yes or no” as seen on other social networks such as Digg or Mixx, but rather is on a scale of 1-10 and is based on a variety of criteria from professionalism and relevance to writing style and creativity.

The more accurately you rate, the higher your influence becomes in deciding which content makes it to the main blog.  This reader influence is one of the things that make BloggersBase such a unique platform.
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September 28, 2008

Social media and citizen journalism now on your iPhone

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IBL News (Spain): Social media and citizen journalism now on your iPhone. Excerpt:

Mobile devices are clearly the platform for citizen newsgathering, and an iPhone application is a logical funnel. Soon people will be able to broadcast anything live from the street; in a way, individuals will become walking televisions.

Last week, CBS Mobile released its EyeMobile iPhone application, making CBS the first broadcast network to launch an application enabling users to become personal broadcasters as they upload, view and comment on photos and videos live, from anywhere.

The EyeMobile application is available, free of charge, at the iTunes App Store.

The EyeMobile application offers the full functionality of CBSEyeMobile.com which launched earlier this year. Using the iPhone camera, users can capture and upload photos to the CBS EyeMobile site where they can view and rate reports and interact with other EyeMobile on-the-go journalists. …

May 8, 2007

Justin Kan of JustinTV

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Last week at OnHollywood I caught up with Justin Kan, creator of Justin.tv. Justin’s been the talk of the social media world the past couple of months, especially at the Web 2.0 Expo and at OnHollywood. He wears a webcam 24/7, and Justin.tv will be rolling out live video streaming services for subscribing shortly.

Here’s the 3-minute video (in MPEG-4) I shot with my Nokia N93 cell phone. It’s also currently the lead video at Ourmedia.

April 30, 2007

Nokia N93: A step forward for citizens media

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I’ve been a member of the Nokia bloggers program for a few months now, and I’ve got to say it’s great fun to be part of this effort and working with former journalist Andy Abramson and the Communicano team. (Nokia sends me cell phones to use and blog about, no strings other than my agreeing to write about the devices.) Here are some of my earlier reviews:

A look at the Nokia N91

Nokia’s gotta-have-it phones: N90 and N70

And here is my still-evolving archive of Nokia mobile video clips, including this interview in Sweden I did with my Nokia N90 (because I wasn’t about to lug my camcorder along), plus some Flickr photos I shot with my Nokia N90 and N93.

I’m not the first with a review of the N93 — I like to give my phones a long test drive before making any recommendations. But I’ve become pretty attached to this sleek new gizmo.

A great phone for citizen journalists

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Here’s Nokia’s page about the N93, plus the bloggers page about the N93. (When Dan Gillmor eyed mine, he said, “Hot damn, I need one of those!”)

The most important thing I can say about Nokia’s N Series is this: The N93 is helping to usher in the citizen media movement in a major way. No one wants to watch grainy, out-of-focus, low-res pictures and videos. With the N93, you don’t have to. It captures video as MPEG-4 files in a big, fat, gorgeous 640×480 display.

People are still getting used to taking video with their mobiles, and Steve Garfield points out that even ABCNews.com can’t get it right.

Steve should know. He and Rocketboom’s Andrew Baron (who showed me how to move clips from my N93 to my Mac laptop using Bluetooth) have been my main go-to guys about these devices.

I bumped into Steve at the recent Video on the Net conference and we compared our N93s. Said Steve: “It’s a great device for capturing and sharing a fleeting moment. Who wants to lug a camcorder around all day? This lets you capture events that you would have otherwise missed out on in our always-on video culture.”

I still have the bad habit of wanting to edit my video clips in a dedicated video editor, like iMovie, but Steve showed me how to use the N93’s built-in video editor (under Options / Edit). It took him less than 15 minutes, riding the train in Boston, to master the technique.

Zack Rosen shot this video snippet of me and Dan Gillmor talking about the recently launched Principles of Citizen Journalism project. And here’s a video I shot of Britt Bravo on my loaner N93 at the Social Media Consensus gathering last month.

It’s a little bit bulky to be carrying around all the time, a drawback Nokia will no doubt fix as its N Series line matures. And it doesn’t handle low-light shooting situations very well for either photos or video. The interface also can be daunting — I still don’t know the easiest way to check my missed calls after it alerts me and the message goes away. (Nokia, take some words of widsom from Henry David Thoreau: Simplify, simplify.)

Having said that, the N93 has rescued me on numerous occasions. When someone says, "Too bad nobody brought a camcorder," I like to whip out this baby and reply, "Oh, yeah?"