Tag Archives: facebook

Life These Days: With Family And Friends Kindle Edition by Ronald McClure

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I picked this up on Kindle Unlimited because it hadn’t been reviewed before. Let’s take a look!

* First off, the concept seems…. well, only interesting to a VERY select group of people. Maybe the author and a few people around him, but let’s give it a fair shot.

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* Page 1: A photo of fixing a door. And all the comments from family/friends about said photo. It’s not transcribed mind you, it’s just screen captures of the Facebook posts glued into each page.

* Page 2: “We woke up WHITE! Just thought you’d like to know!” – yeah well, everyone in this book is pretty white, let me tell you.

* Page 3: Photo of an unidentified interior of a building. Can’t tell if it’s a bar or a house. Photos are all black and white and VERY small so even if this was interesting, it wouldn’t be.

* Page 4/5: Merry Christmas greetings, the author and wife in Christmas hats. Lots of one-liner Christmas greetings exchanged.

* A few pages on we get an album of apparent vacation photos. No indication of where they are though. Grand Canyon maybe? Seems like something better posted on Flickr or some sort of… oh, I dunno, photo service?

* Couple pages further… picture of a relative holding a cup of soda in some unidentified diner.

* A few more pages further we are treated to a sampling of a Facebook messenger chat with someone else who is unidentified and his importance is entirely unknown.

OK, enough of that. While I appreciate what a pain in the butt it must have been to put this together, I fail to see the need for this there is in the world. The only people who could be remotely interested in this are already Facebook friends with the author. So while by all means I applaud the desire to capture and document the past, I see absolutely no reason to try to sell copies of it online.

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Noticed I’m a bit Quiet Lately?

Well, as it turns out I’m not quiet at all; I’m just tired of cross-posting articles to 5 different sites. The Publicize to Facebook feature hasn’t seemed to work for quite some time so all my random blathering has been going over there directly. Lately I’ve been on a pretty feverish movie review kick (primarily on Amazon Instant Watch movies that you can watch free with Amazon prime) so if you want a free movie or 50 to watch (or want to know what to avoid) head on over to my Facebook page for The Tattered Thread!

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The Demise of Facebook – A Play in 1,000 Acts

A few months ago when Facebook went public there were a few people around me who perked up their ears, remembering the dot.com boom of the 90s, and said that they needed to buy in to the IPO. As a person who drove down the street and heard ads on the radio for eBay and Google before their IPOs and thought, “Really wish I had some money to buy some stock in that place” I could sympathize. Everybody wants in on the ground floor of some great stock but when Facebook IPO’d something in my soul screamed, “NO!” As it turns out, my soul was right. Facebook now trades below 50% of its initial offering price. Clearly this is because I’m some sort of stock market genius, right? Um. Fuck No. My portfolios are under water same as everyone else’s but I know a real stinker when I see it.

Until today I didn’t really have a good sense of why my instincts shouted at me this way. Everybody’s on Facebook nowadays. I’ve got more friends on there than I have in real life. I see more random crap content from Facebook than from any other source. Where else am I going to get my daily quota of funny cat pictures and meaningless personal status messages? Not to mention, I see more advertising from Facebook than from the television. What can possibly fail in that business model?

As it turns out, at least two things can fail. Firstly, I don’t remember ever having clicked on any of Facebook’s advertising. Ever. Ever ever. Right now on my Facebook feed I see an ad for American Express and I’m abundantly not tempted to click on it. I couldn’t care less. This is the rule for every paid ad I ever recall seeing. It’s a total targeting failure. What I do see is a story from Mental Floss. I’m seriously tempted to subscribe to the magazine and I’m tempted every time I see a posting. Only problem for Facebook? I ‘Liked’ this page because someone else did and Facebook didn’t make a single dime. I’ve run some advertising of my own so I know how their pricing structure works. The fact that Jen liked Mental Floss and shared something and thus caused me to like it didn’t net Facebook a solitary penny. If I actually do make a purchase then it’ll be through Amazon and Facebook will have missed out utterly. Facebook is a great conduit for commonality but they’ve failed to actually determine how to make money with that information.

Secondly, Facebook has tried to be the grand unifier of all information about everything. You can tell it about your reading preferences, your new tattoo or your bedroom conquests and it’ll happily accept all you have to give. The problem is that Facebook is not ultimately the repository of most of the information that will be of real financial use. Sure, I give Facebook my random photos or status updates but today when I was entering the last 10 years of my reading history, information that could be legitimately used to actually sell me something, I was on Goodreads, not Facebook. Facebook introduced me to this third party because someone else I know used them but again, Facebook’s not making a dime.

At its heart, the business model seems flawed and doomed. Facebook is giving up a ton of information and connecting a lot of people but they’re not really reaping as much as they could in return. There are 1,000 specialty websites that service specific needs so well that Facebook seems unable to compete. Want to write movie reviews? Try IMDB. Need to talk about books? Take your pick of websites. Want to just blog randomly? WordPress is your best option. Facebook is the nexus of scads of personal information connecting consumers to service providers but I can’t help but feel that the vast majority of it is going to waste. I like Facebook, but I feel its ultimate ruination closing in on it. A thousand swords of Damocles hang over its head.

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