Newspaper circulation drop accelerates

It’s the largest drop recorded so far during the past decade’s steady decline in paid readership — a span that has coincided with an explosion of online news sources that don’t charge readers for access. Many newspapers also have been reducing delivery to far-flung locales and increasing prices to get more money out of their remaining sales. Source: Newspaper circulation drop accelerates April-Sept – Yahoo! News.

Newspapers are trying to recover from a steep drop in advertising revenue — traditionally their main source of money. The worst U.S. recession since World War II and the lure of the Internet have combined to make the industry’s annual ad revenue $20 billion less than it was three years ago.

This is another example of the growth of social media and the fall of traditional media. As more (young) people turn to the Internet for news and information, they are more involved, more engaged in the news; users are making the news. This is a sign of times to come – newspapers and news media are an endangered species – the Internet is the new news source and social media is the new printing press. Power to the people.

Ironically, I grabbed this article from an online news source (AP News & Yahoo News). What happens if these sources dry up? Why should they continue to pay people to report news when social media sources do it for free? Stay tuned. Those questions haven’t been answered yet.

Nurturing Communities with Social Networking

Kristofer Layon
Director of Web Design & Online Collaboration, University of Minnesota

October 5

Social media can create community:

  • Group of people having a religion, race, profession or other particular characteristic in common

  • Feeling of fellowship with others as a result of sharing common attitudes interests

  • Group of interdependent organisms of different species growing or living together in a specified habitat

Are you bringing people together that are similar or different?

Principles of good social media personae:

  • be factual most of the time

  • be sincere and polite all of the time

  • carefully weigh entering into politics…or otherwise straying off-topic (80/20 rule)

  • be consistent (singular voice)

  • be human


  • blogging, social networking:ning, photo sharing: youtube, micro-blog: twitter

  • integrated social media: minnewebcon

What was ROI for minnewebcon09:

  • twitter: 1400%

  • facebook: 285%

  • banner ad: -54%

Social media feels immediate, but you need to plan for the long term. It takes time. Use the plan. It may change some, but it guides you and should be used.


  • plan

  • humility

  • persistence

twitter: klayon

iPhones, Social Media and Higher Education

A possible friend/kindred spirit from the HighEdWeb conference posed the question on twitter today:

ColB: Not exactly a shock but — what does it mean for how/what we develop? Via Mashable: “iPhone Dominates Mobile WiFi Usage”

To which I responded:

teamsiems: @ColB We use @tamuwww on iPhone to see class schedules, contact info, maps, and more

But seriously, what are we (Higher Education) going to do with iPhones? What should we do at this point with an untested technology (small, wireless, social media)?

Face it, twitter is running wild. No one is controlling it, there is no advertising, and fewer teenagers (future students) using it. Do we migrate with the herd? We sure fell into the social media trap almost as quickly as the rest of the world. And why not, money is money, and public universities need it as much as commerical businesses.

Only time will tell – tell how soon we continue with the soon to be old technology or jump ship for the next best thing.

My interest in Special Interest Groups @HighEdWeb 2009

My interest in Special Interest Groups @HighEdWeb 2009 and why:

  • Marketing and Communications: I work for a group called Communications and Marketing; we need to market the dry topic of information technology. But seriously, I think it is a delicate subject in higher education. We don’t have the budget that Sapient has, and we have to be more tactful than corporate America.
  • Leveraging Social Media/Networking tools: using social media is the norm today. Students coming to college use (some forms) of social media without batting an eye. We need to be comfortable with it. We need to use it as a marketing tool just like we used older forms of communication.
  • Accessibility: I’ve heard it summarized best this way, “Making anything accessible to the disabled makes it more accessible to the abled.” We need to make our communications accessible to the challenged not just because it’s the law, but because it makes it more accessible to the masses.
  • Usability and Usability testing: Like accessibility, usable design is universal. If it is good for a few chances are it’s good for the many. We need to make the web usable the first time or it wont get used and other aspects of our business will suffer – marketing, accessibility, management, etc.
  • Content Management: When we manage content well it makes life a whole lot easier. A Content Management System (CMS) can take care of a lot of above e.g. accessible, usable blogs with links to twitter/facebook/myspace.

Reposted from

SXSW Day Two

The Seven Rules for Great Web Application Design

Robert Hoekman Jr

We want to make users feel great like a lion – king of the jungle
Good sites make users feel good, empowered, like the lion
“#1 goal of users is to get off your site”

#1 understand users, then ignore them
dont ask them what they think – they lie
watch them, test them – understand tem

apps do what users need them to do

#2 buid only what’s absolutely necessary
see – upload file, share with a url
simple is good, but clarity is better

#3 support the user’s mental model
Deleting a piece of paper is throwing it in trash not a series of commands like a dos widow use to do.

#4 turn beginners into intermediates immediately
e.g. the old page was not intuitive – someone called the builder to figure out how to sign up – the main purpose of the home page. people don’t like to feel dumb.

so the design needs to help them move up the learning curve quickly (painlessly)
try usability study to redesign – find out what they want to do and do it

#5 prevent errors. (and handle the rest gracefully.)
if we enable them to make mistakes – they will – you can’t really make an error on this site. you will feel smarter every time you use it.

#6 design for uniformity, consistency, and meaning – most people land there from a google search and they dont know why or what to do. add to that, the page design changes from one page to another

#7 reduce, reduce, reduce (and refine)
presentation zen
tells a story of a store that sold fish and they put a sign up that said
“We Sell Fresh Fish Sold Here”
The sign was reduce word by word until it disappeared.

The ultimate goal: communicate intentionally
every thing on a page communicates something, make sure it does something worth the space, customer time it uses
“if you make user feel like a lion, they will make us feel us feel like lions”

Opening Remarks

Tony Hsieh


<———– I lost network before this presentation started. There was 400+ people trying to connect.

Lunch at Moonshine Patio Grill was good enough. Had the tuna melt while sitting at the bar with a chap. When the food arrived all hell broke loose – about 100 people rushed the restaurant and it was standing room only from then on. I guess I got there just in time.

Opening Remarks
Tony Hsieh

Tony started by selling pizza in college with his roommate and alfred would buy several pizzas and sell them off by the slice.
Then he moved to start linkexchange and ended up sold it to microsoft in 1998.
He looks to Virgin alot
He spends marketing money on customer experience customer service instead of commercials.
He uses phone more than web because its a better branding device.
He chose to loose about 25% of revenue to focus on customer service.
they search competors sites and give up the sale if they find it
customer service isnt his number one focus, it is working culture. if you have happy workers, customer service will follow.
he trains everyone the same no matter what your final job is.
for this year: clothing , customer service, culture

culture: deliver wow through service, embrace and drive change, create fun and little weirdness, be adventurous, createive and open minded, …
it doesnt matter what your values are – can you commit to them

steps to success:
decide, figure out values and culture, commit to transparency, vision, build relationships, build your team, think long term

* transparency – now there is an extra 1000 pair of eyes helping maintain the brand
* vision – whatever you think, think bigger

happines: perceived control, perceived progress,
maslow hierachy

books: peak, tribal leadership, four house work week, happiness hypothesis

Future of Social Networks

Charlene Li
Altimeter Group

Think about ten years from now “we had to go to 10 sites to do what we want”
“Social networks will be like air”

Rethinking events – now who was attending, arrange seating
mobile apps are social
tv is getting social – they showed everyones tags with obama, but what if we wanted to know just our friends
networks mve into the enterprise – pulling profiles into apps

Three things needed to make social networks like air
1) identify – who you are
2) contacts – who you know
3) activities – what you do

Two sets of rules/standards exits
facebook connect – includes protocol for sharing identity contact and content
open stack – payers include google myspace plaxo yahoo are following standards

my identity, in context
one: professional
two: personal

friend management is tough today
filters on make friends and news feeds more management and valuable, but it still laborious

some social networks are getting rich – they know more about me – because we trust someone like Google
a social algorith will make privacy and permissions easier to manage
what is it going to take to get everyone to open – $$$
there is a mutually beneficial relationship between sites when they tap into their network
it also lays the ground work for activity data – passing profiles means there was a request
some identify your network neighboor – people closet to you (like students in chem 101)
how will things develop
biz models
1) evaluate where social makes sense – identify where socail data and content can be integrated; leverage existing
identity ad social grphs where the audience is facebook; get privacy in place; find trust agents
2) get your backend data in order – remove multi signons, registration ad profiles for people (SSO)
3) prepare to integratate social networks into your organization
where is the customer in the org chart – put customer at the top, ceo at the bottom
* social networks will be like air
* technologies are still being put int place
* open networks