Meeting of the Minds A Lunch Community <![CDATA[Yelp Quick Tip by BaronSamedi3]]> Mon, 5 Aug 2013 12:17:20 +0000 <![CDATA[ Quick Tip by BaronSamedi3]]> Sat, 10 Nov 2012 01:21:16 +0000 <![CDATA[Facebook Quick Tip by Sharrie]]>
I wrote a review of it (I know a bubble when I see one!) on the weekend after its listing looking for a price range of $25-28! It recorded a low of $26.83 yesterday (May 31) before a technical rebound at the close! 

So, what's next?!

]]> Fri, 1 Jun 2012 05:09:42 +0000
<![CDATA[ I know a bubble when I see one!]]>
Facebook had its IPO listed on Nasdaq last friday (May 18) making Mark Zuckerberg a $20 billion man! He rang in the bell for Nasdaq opening & his own wedding the next day (May 19). That makes Mark Zuckerberg not just the richest 28 year old on the planet but also the luckiest guy in the world!!!

So much about Mark Zuckerberg. He's a highly intelligent guy & I suspect that the ones who make the most out of this IPO is him since he got to choose to set a price that's now deemed to be too high by the market. At $38, Mark Zuckerberg managed to raise some $16 billion for the company and his dream and ambition. Morgan Stanley made some 1% underwriting fee out of this although they have probably lost a lot more by trying to support the share above its issuing price last friday, its 1st day of trading.

Never mind about Morgan Stanley. The heydays of investment banking are over with, we hope!!! Still, JPMorgan Chase has its fair share of limelight last week and probably upcoming weeks too. Not to mention one of Goldman Sachs' top men is being investigated for insider trading!

Back to Facebook. At $38, it's a PE of over 100! That's crazy if you compare it to those of Apple and LinkedIn. Does everyone has to own Facebook shares? As if Facebook hasn't owned enough of your time!!! It doesn't make sense to me. This is a case of hope and greed in the stock market, just like it used to be with tulips! Ok, may be Facebook has potential ... ways to monetize its 800 million users! That's in the "distant" future, is it not? If you think no, then you will be sorry today as it is now trading at $5 less than issue price and $10 off its high (a loss of some 14% from its closing last friday)! Who knows how low it will get? Probably around $25-$28?!

The stock market ... well, if you still believe in it, remember that scarcity rules! And, hopes and greed dominate. Sometimes, fear takes flight too! In this case, it's good to see it's not all in a frenzy!!! 

Greed is good, but only for Mark Zuckerberg!!!
As for Greece, God help them!!!

]]> Mon, 21 May 2012 14:52:29 +0000
<![CDATA[Facebook Quick Tip by Sharrie]]>
PE of over 100?! Forget it!!! Are you sure you're that good a friend with Mark? ;-)

]]> Mon, 21 May 2012 14:18:34 +0000
<![CDATA[Facebook Quick Tip by BaronSamedi3]]> Thu, 1 Dec 2011 23:47:42 +0000 <![CDATA[Wikipedia Quick Tip by BaronSamedi3]]> Sat, 29 Oct 2011 20:53:18 +0000 <![CDATA[ When sharing can get out of hand!]]>
So, I'll keep this short and simple. My take on Facebook.
I had an account on it for many years but I hardly logged in. The main reason being I don't really know a great many who are on it and I was residing in China for the last 4 years, I was logged out of it. It's banned!

Now that we got over that, let's talk about Facebook, from my perspective:
  1. More than 1.3 billions Chinese are technically not on it,  unless one bypass the great firewall.
  2. It's too time-consuming and not much real/decent work can be done when you're on it!
  3. My few friends whom I got to know from are on it, hence, I'm on it just to keep in touch with them :)
  4. 2 great features - sharing of photos and videos (easier than any other sites! I was surprised I could just add Youtube links without having to copy the embed codes!). Not mine though, but I snooped around others' quite a bit, hehe...
  5. It's Facebook, one of the major social media sites. No one can afford not to be on it or at least have a working knowledge of it!

That's it... stay connected but stay out of it when you've got work to do!

]]> Mon, 11 Jul 2011 13:22:12 +0000
<![CDATA[ Biting the Hand that Feeds Me Lunch]]>
As you can probably tell from my rating, I generally like One of the site owners found my work on and asked me to drop in and give a quick whirl, even offering a little bit of payment as an incentive. With swirling ominously around the suckage drain at the moment, I shrugged and said "Well, why not?" And did I mention paid me to do so? (Really, I felt very honored by the fact that, out of thousands of reviewers on Epinions, someone noticed my work and asked me to come over.)

I am not the most popular reviewer on Epinions, but my work was strong enough for me to be offered a reviewer spot on the independent video game website Netjak, and when Netjak went south, The Examiner came calling. I was very proud to place my work among the pantheon of talented reviewers with Netjak, but The Examiner proved to be a real hellhole. So when it came time for new exposure, my setting up shop on Lunch proved to be a good move when I saw that my reviews were getting over 100 hits within hours on bad days. On Epinions, for me to get 100 hits took months. I was especially impressed when my review of the movie Dark City reeled in 14,000 in about 12 hours. It even gets tweeted a lot these days. Even Netjak didn't expose me that much!

I'm very fond of the quick tips section because it lets me write a quick blurb about any subject that I can't review in depth. It also allows me a lot of extra exposure. The profile on Lunch is awesome because I'm allowed to link up other websites to it. Lunch doesn't have a big problem with me creating links to other websites in my reviews either, so if I need to prove something, hey, just link it right up! Or use a photograph, which is also allowed!

The REALLY great thing about Lunch is that I'm allowed to review literally anything. I've written reviews about walking, bicycling, community gardening, and a couple of musical artists. Not just their work, but the artists themselves, which really allows me to open up with my criticism whenever I believe it truly necessary. On Epinions, you're given the impression that you can review anything, but typing it into the search bar gives you about a 50/50 chance of finding it. Even if Epinions does have what I'm looking for, I'm frequently forced to visit Google and type "(blank) reviews Epinions" in order to find it, and even then, they might provide links to the products on Amazon or Ebay but not allow you to review it themselves. Even worse, if you ARE able to review it, they might not actually have it sectioned, which means no one will be able to ever find it. I wrote a review of Phantasy Star IV on Epinions which sat unread for close to a week because it wasn't placed anywhere!

I should note that on the downside, the search feature on Lunch can sometimes turn up more than one result for a very specific product you're looking to review. I searched for The Simpsons recently, and got three results all for the single, lone TV show that exists! This is called overkill, but I will acknowledge that I would rather have way too many results than too few.

While I do appreciate the automatic importer from Epinions, this is where I think Lunch seriously faulters. I've taken to simple copying and pasting from Epinions to Lunch in the traditional way because Lunch will import anything even if you've already got it posted! There's no limiting what can be imported or what can't - when you import from Epinions, everything Lunch is capable of taking gets taken.

It's entirely possible that I'm missing something here, but it seems like I'm always looking for substitute communities to place reviews in if one of the communities I belong to doesn't quite fit the mold. I've written a lot about actors, but always placed them in the movies section. Well, Nathan Fillion is TECHNICALLY a movie actor, but I don't think that guy from Waiting is the first character people think of when they think of Nathan Fillion. Even his best-known movie character, Malcolm Reynolds from Serenity, was a TV character first. Here's my point: If there's a way to get a product into a community or section that fits it better than any of my communities, I haven't found it.

Otherwise, I've been with Lunch for about six or seven months now, and I'm loving it.]]> Wed, 22 Jun 2011 15:32:23 +0000
<![CDATA[ Quick Tip by Sharrie]]> Fri, 6 May 2011 04:06:45 +0000 <![CDATA[ Ragequit! I'm outta here!]]> Global phenomenon? Yes. A scourge of every day life? Absolutely. Here's why you should follow my example and pull the plug on Zuckerberg's narcissistic ego-porn site.

So today I took the leap and unfriended myself from Facebook, which is ironic considering that I spend a major part of my time helping clients buy social media advertising - it's like being the drug dealer who won't touch the stuff. And it does strangely feel like I've disconnected myself and entered a social networking wilderness, but actually it's a step that I think more people should consider.

1. Zero privacy

Apart from Facebook's own checkered history with privacy, the truth is that you're providing endless amounts of personal detail for very little reason -- just take a look at Facebook Advertising to see how this works. While they do have privacy controls, Facebook just doesn't work as intended if you use them: it's like going to a cocktail party with duct tape over your mouth and a bag over your head. And with the proliferation of Like, Share and Connect buttons everywhere, there's never been a better time to create a permanent public record of your surfing habits.

2. Look at me! LOOK AT ME!

My opinion of certain friends has been on the downward slope as they've basically spammed my news feed with utter crap. 400 pictures of flowers in Thailand. 300 pictures of hugging strangers while getting drunk. A photo of the entree I ordered last night. It's so unbelievably pointless but more importantly it's annoying. It appears that some of the people I know have dangerously narcissistic tendencies (which is ok now since it's technically not a psychological disorder anymore).

3. One Platform To Rule Them All

I'm all Open Source-y and have a major suspicion of any technology that attempts to implant itself as part of the core Internet eco-system. If email only ever had one provider, like AOL, we'd still be using dial-up - it's healthy that there were thousands of competing email systems, yet the system worked just fine - and evolved quickly too.

Facebook aims to be a required part of your Internet experience, which is counter to way it should work. There need to be a range of competing systems that interrelate with the effectiveness of email. Although there are other Facebook-type sites, these are clones and you have to choose one to use rather than any. 

4. Shallow relationships

In many ways, sites like do a much better job than Facebook. It takes hard work to write reviews, read others' reviews, and develop opinions. It doesn't take hard work to take a picture of my cat. I often feel I have a better insight into the personalities of the many excellent Lunchers here than people I've known for years who post inane Twitter-length comments about having a cold.

It also has a chilling effect (I love that phrase) on seeing people who haven't physically met in a long time, since you casually know what's been going on in their lives through Facebook. It's a shallow replacement for the real thing.

5. Goldman Sachs is here

The world's favorite vampire squid is now involved, which surely must be a sign to move on. One of the big proponents of Internet Bubble stocks a decade ago, the investment banks are readying themselves for Round Two of the great Web "Pump & Dump". We're talking trillions of dollars again for a company that doesn't actually produce anything, so I'd rather not be part of the calamity when it gets IPO'd to death and then crashes and burns. If that seems unlikely now, it also seemed unlikely last time too.

In shutting down my Facebook account, I'm putting the social back into social media - visiting friends for dinner, seeing family in the flesh, and spending time talking to people. I don't need virtual gifts, Mafia Wars or 50 updates an hour on my Droid to be part of my network. And while I think there are many websites that help develop friendships and your knowledge of things you like - and it's one of the great benefits of the web - Facebook isn't one of them.

I hope you like this review by sharing it on Facebook. :-)]]> Thu, 20 Jan 2011 21:15:50 +0000
<![CDATA[ Unity in diversity]]> Wikipedia is not merely a virtual encyclopedia, nor is it merely a free website for all. It is a dream, a human effort (by thousands if not millions of people) and a "temple for the mind" (as written by its founder Jimmy Wales). Wikipedia is "a dream, a humanitarian project" and a way to greatness for many of the people in the under-developed to the developed world.

While in many online sites, the gather of the minds have been capitalized by the few, Wikipedia has (up to today) been a concerted effort by many "nameless" and "faceless" contributors. Contributors don't gain much (at least from what I can see) and yet the complexities and diversities of entries have made it into the most useful site I've come across. If there is to be peace on earth, the most effective way of demonstrating that peace probably can be seen nowhere else but on Wikipedia! It is on this site that humans cooperate to make it a better world, is it not? And for that reason alone, Wikipedia is definitely worth keeping!

Personally, I cannot envisage how someone would want to take on that difficult task of keeping it commercial free and to do it voluntarily! It is not just a one month or one year project. It takes a lifetime and more than one lifetime of effort to keep it going on. Yet, in the history of mankind, we see people who have a belief and who live their lives fulfilling that belief, sometimes (against all odds) successfully! In this case, Jimmy Wales has done the impossible!

Hence, if even for a moment you believe in this project, I think it is only right that we contribute in our own ways, be it in terms of our knowledge, time or, more specifically, in this case, monetarily. The site is aiming for a US$16 million donations for the year 2010 and has had up to US$12 million. US$4 millions more to go. Can you pledge your contribution? $1, $10 or $100? All are welcome. No amount is little when it comes to one's belief, isn't it? 

As far as I'm concerned, I've done my part and will do more whenever I can. I hope those of you who have had benefited from the site will try to do your part in keeping it alive! Automatic monthly donation or/& one-time donation are equally welcome!

Long live Wikipedia!!! Long live the spirit of giving!!!]]> Wed, 22 Dec 2010 10:36:02 +0000
<![CDATA[Flickr Quick Tip by KristiSauer]]> Sat, 4 Dec 2010 21:22:28 +0000 <![CDATA[ Old Friends, New Friends, And A Few People You'd LIke To Forget]]>
I believed that those few select people (six friends total), would be my entire world on Facebook. Soon enough, however, I started getting friend requests from people I hadn't seen since high school or college. Knowing them, I decided to approve their friendship and quickly found myself chatting with them about their new families, their new homes, and their new careers.

In a very short amount of time I accumulated around seventy or so friends. All of them (excepting the original six) were people that I knew from my real, blood and bones life.

It was after these seventy people that things started getting weird. I began "liking" pages on Facebook that pertained to my interests such as science fiction, movies, and the New Orleans Saints. All of a sudden, complete strangers started wanting to be my friend supposedly due to sharing my interests. A few of them were obviously spammers hoping to attract me to their website because they all had similar canned friendship messages attached to their request. They also usually included a profile photo of a scantily clad girl who looked to be somewhere in her late teens (Why don't they ever use a photo of a scantily clad late 20's/early 30's woman? That's more interesting to a guy my age. Oh well, I guess that belongs in another review!).

Anyway, after sifting through and denying all of the nineteen year old hotties wanting to be my friend, I was usually left with a bunch of people who I knew absolutely nothing about. Some of them had public profiles with access to tons of personal information about them. It scared me to be quite honest with you. Needless to say, I denied all of them as well.

As time progressed, friendship requests started to slow down. I picked up a few new friends here and their after befriending them in real life, and thanks to Facebook's security features, I can actually block a few of the friends that I don't know that well from seeing certain parts of my profile, especially pictures of me and my family.

Ironically, many people who wouldn't say two words to me in high school or college seem to want to be my friend now. This is a very strange phenomena to me. One of my old bullies tried to friend me as well, but I simply denied his request. Sure, he might have changed and matured with time, but one thing I've learned is that the more things change, the more they stay the same. In other words, once a meathead, always a meathead!

I've also found that I tend to talk more with the friends I've made in the past five years and rarely talk to old friends from high school. I can only guess that the reason this is is due to the fact that I have more in common with them than my old high school pals.

As a rule, I only accept friend requests and do not usually send them to anyone. Maybe that's strange, but I look at it this way: If a person wants to be my friend or reunite from days gone by, they'll get in touch with me. Perhaps it is due to the fact that I'm not a big fan of being turned down for friendship requests, but have no problem denying others!

Overall, Facebook can be a very useful tool to get back in touch with people you've lost contact with. It can also help you keep up with your current friends and plan times to get together. And if you're into science fiction conventions like I am, Facebook can help you get in touch with people in the know in that community.

I like Facebook. I use it almost everyday. I never thought that I would, but it has become a key part of my life. Besides, Facebooking someone sounds a lot cooler than "tweeting" them!]]> Sun, 7 Nov 2010 02:27:14 +0000
<![CDATA[Wikipedia Quick Tip by TheJohn]]> Sat, 25 Sep 2010 18:20:54 +0000 <![CDATA[ Quick Tip by TheJohn]]> Sat, 25 Sep 2010 18:06:43 +0000 <![CDATA[Wikipedia Quick Tip by TheJohn]]> Wed, 22 Sep 2010 05:57:46 +0000 <![CDATA[Facebook Quick Tip by tracybb]]> Fri, 17 Sep 2010 16:34:16 +0000 <![CDATA[Facebook Quick Tip by Sean_Rhodes]]> Mon, 19 Jul 2010 21:07:30 +0000 <![CDATA[Twitter Quick Tip by theKENnection]]> & even makes for quite the effortlessly enjoyable tweeting experience.]]> Mon, 5 Jul 2010 11:56:43 +0000 <![CDATA[Facebook Quick Tip by sama89]]> Sat, 3 Jul 2010 14:52:21 +0000 <![CDATA[Twitter Quick Tip by artjipson]]> Fri, 25 Jun 2010 03:30:31 +0000 <![CDATA[ Remember Me]]>
In 2005, a guy in a college dorm named Mark Zuckerberg created a website he called Facebook.  This was shortly after a place like Myspace was already incredibly popular and snatching headlines.  At first when Facebook was established it was a way for the student body of his college to keep tabs on everyone.  To figure out what was going on around campus.  Shortly after that the site expanded to being open to primarily college students.  Upon first joining Facebook in 2005 my first thought was more along the lines of, "What's the big deal?"  It seemed exactly the same as Myspace back then.  Albeit it was a little neater and I didn't have to worry about someone putting so much crap on their page that it would freeze my computer.  At first it was easy to dismiss Facebook.  After all, in 2005 it didn't have all the same features it has now.  Now Facebook is a huge global phenomenon.  With over 500 million members, Facebook is easily one of the fastest ways to connect to the world outside of your core friends that you'd see in real life.

In 2006, Facebook's first big expansion was that it started allowing High School students to join.  This move, like so many others Facebook would make in the future, caused controversy.  For example, there were college students whining that it was their hangout spot (oddly enough THAT seems like a whining high school student's complaint) and that they had no business being there.  Looking back on it now, that just seems silly that there were ever any complaints at all.  Other complaints surfaced when the site opened up to allow everyone to join.  Facebook was suddenly more public than it had ever been.  And in his early 20's Mark Zuckerberg became a billionaire.  He went from someone making a website in a dorm, to being CEO of a giant social networking corporation.  Facebook is now one of the most visited and busiest websites on the internet.  Most of you here have a Facebook profile.  And I bet if given the time and energy, I could find most of you.  And ALL of you could probably find me without problems.

The process of signing up has changed from when I first joined in 2005, but I have an idea.  When you first join, Facebook waste no time in getting you connected with other friends.  When you register an email you can go right into things and figure out who else actually has a facebook page.  Because it goes into your email and suggests people based on this.  Those who already have a Facebook will come up instantly.  Afterwards you can invite other people in your box and then you can actually start browsing the site looking for people.

Of course, looking for people is no fun if you don't fill your profile with such things as maybe your hometown... perhaps even some of your favorite books, movies and musicians.  Facebook can go a little far in asking you what you want to place on your profile, however.  Listing off your favorite books and even your hometown is fine... but the site also has an option for you to display your phone number, your AIM ID or MSN Messenger ID (along with any other messengers)... and even your home address.  The last of this all seems like it's asking for a bit much.  Facebook has always been running into criticisms involving privacy.  When you register, for example, your account is public by default.  This wouldn't be such a problem if Facebook didn't insist on making the navigation through your privacy settings so tedious and annoying.  It's not horrible, but considering how easy it is to do everything else on Facebook, it's strange that the privacy settings, of all things, actually requires work on your part.  And much of what you find in them are pretty vague.  You can, at least, preview your profile from an outside view.  That doesn't make it any less annoying when trying to go about your privacy settings.

According to Zuckerberg, the point of Facebook is to be more open anyway.  And Facebook has always been pushing for that.  In 2007 Facebook introduced the News Feed option.  At first it got a lot of people protesting.  At the time, however, Facebook only had ten million members and a good portion of them were upset that now just about every action they did was broadcast to their friends.  In spite of everything, not seeing your friends status updates now seems like something you couldn't live without.  The News Feed, in spite of a lukewarm reception, became something many users appreciated because they now no longer had to go to each friend's profile individually.  Likewise, users are able to choose which updates show up on their newsfeed... and if you do something that you don't want people to see, you can remove it.  The News Feed actually didn't turn out to be so bad at all.  "What people want isn't complete privacy," Zuckerberg told TIME Magazine, "It's that they want control over what they share and what they don't."  And Zuckerberg is right.  There are some people who will hold nothing back on Facebook.  They'll post as many pictures as they can find.  Put anything in their status update.

When people post on their wall or something on the news feed comes up, you're able to "Like" that person's status activity.  This is really awesome to give your friends some recognition, but for the most part it can be annoying if it's someone who has a lot of friends.  The moment you comment on someone's status or "Like" it, you will get a notification any time someone else comments on said status or likes it.  This is fine when there aren't that many people.  But when someone has say... 1,000 friends it can be annoying that you simply "Liked" someone's status but then you have to hear what 200 other people are saying about it.

There are also many many MANY different pages on Facebook for anything.  There are standard likes such as liking "Video Games" or liking a specific movie or celebrity.  To the strange pages such as, "I Bet This Pickle Can Get More Fans Than Nickelback" (oh it's a real page) to the downright bizarre.  Groups that are, more or less, simple statements such as, "People Who Sleep Because They Go to Bed Late for No Reason."  This is all crazy stuff.  And there are literally millions of these pages with anywhere from hundreds to millions of people liking them.  And they all operate as your own profile does, only someone has to monitor them and update them regularly.

There are also plenty of applications on Facebook that will get your profile information to work.  Things such as figuring out which crazy author you are, or what color your soul is.  Usually little stupid quizzes that are there for the sake of fun.  There are other more daring applications as well.  Not to mention games... such as Mafia Wars or (ugh...) Farmville.  And people take these games quite seriously.

And everything you do on ALL of these things can be displayed on your own profile page.

It begs the question just whether or not we've ever truly experienced privacy before Facebook.  What I mean by that is before it's not like you had the option to tell the world anything and everything.  Privacy was... well... a default thing.  It wasn't that your life was private... it was actually that you just couldn't get it out there.  Facebook has definitely changed that the line between what's appropriate to share and what isn't becomes blurred to some users.  And yes, businesses and such will now take time to look at your Facebook profile to see what it is you've done.  So will the police.  Underage and you're caught in a photo with a beer in your hand?  That's enough for the police to charge you with underage drinking.  Likewise, you could probably lose your job or lose consideration for a job thanks to things you put on Facebook (or the internet as a whole... if they find it).  It's not that people don't like their privacy, it's that those of us who were prone to being open in the first place, just never had that expressive outlet without, you know, being famous.  And yes, people can post a little too much on Facebook now, and things are a little too open for certain people.

The expansion of Facebook has made it's way into changing the internet as a whole.  Go to just about any webpage now and you have the option of connecting to Facebook or sharing certain things on Facebook.  Many websites let you connect with Facebook and log in that way as opposed to logging in with a different username at so many different sites.  You can connect with your Facebook profile and do it that way.  This means on some websites you don't even have to go through the hassle of registering.  Not when you can just use Facebook Connect.  You should all know what Facebook Connect is. uses it too. 

It goes even further, though.  Everyone, of course, knows about "liking" something.  This has also expanded to several different websites.  Go to a website like the IMDB and go to any movie and you can choose to "Like" said movie and it'll show up on your page telling all your friends you like it.  You can "Like" a whole website, if you so choose.  And, of course, you can share what you find.  Almost every website, every youtube video gives you the option to share what you've found with others and it somehow pops up on your page.  You no longer have to go through the hassle of embedding videos from youtube.  You can simply choose to share it now.  The same is also true of certain news stories from websites and even when you leave comments on a webpage.  Some of you have no doubt noticed that when you leave a comment or review on Lunch you're given to option to put it on your Facebook page as well (assuming you're connected).  

How well does this work for Facebook?  Very well.  Thanks to this word about many things can travel fast.  Let's take a simple example.  Many of you have probably seen people post status updates like, "Facebook will start charging," or joining groups that say something like "Facebook will start charging you ten dollars beginning in ___________"  The blank is left for you to insert a month or a date.  It should be pretty obvious it's a hoax, but people believe it constantly.  Facebook doesn't have to charge members in order to generate revenue.  Because even their ads are designed to cater toward... well... you.  Facebook does what's called "suggestions."  It uses your profile information, your likes and your friends (yes, your friends) to decipher just what it should advertise to you.  I, for example am a big gamer, a big Stephen King fan and a big movie fan.  I decided to like Video Games.  Suddenly my page was flooded with advertisements for video games.  I decided to like Stephen King and now I get ads for his books, or group suggestions for his books.  Oh, but it goes deeper.  If a certain number of friends "like" somethig the website just might suggest that YOU like it too.  Because if you and your friends share similar interests... then perhaps you just might like what they like too.  In short, Facebook charging you would be a bit risky for their revenue if suddenly people stopped coming to the site because they started charging.  The same rumor pops up on Myspace all the time (and I'm guessing Twitter, but I don't tweet).  Facebook works out because it happens to go beyond just Facebook.  When you can go to different websites and log in with what is essentially a universal ID (your Facebook profile) and when you can put ANYTHING on your Facebook page from ANY website, then it's easy to see just how Facebook became such a huge juggernaut.  Very few websites can do it.  And when they do, they can't do it the way Facebook does. 

This is another reason why it's so easy to be interconnected.  For some Facebook is a shortcut.  Not to get to knowing friends, but in terms of connecting with the rest of the interweb without having to explore it extensively.  Why search for a specific Youtube video your friend told you about when you can easily find it posted on their profile?  It's easily one of the best things about Facebook.  Just that there's so much you can do with it. 

This does cause some controversy, however because it brings about the question just what exactly your profile information is being used for.  Creating personalized ads isn't really so new.  Google does the same thing, creating ads that cater toward what you might've searched for in the past.  With Facebook, however, it means that what you've posted on your page is being used... but not exactly with your permission.  As I've said before, Facebook has had a lot of controversy concerning privacy.  Not just because you run into people who post a little too much about themselves, but because there have been times when Facebook has gone too far in using your profile information for the sake of getting advertisements catered toward you.  Sometimes the applications you use will also pass along some of the info in your profile to advertisers. 

If there's anything about Facebook that might urk me, it would be that there's no really definitive blogging feature on the site.  You can post "notes" that will be hidden in the corner of your profile page.  And unless you decided to tag a billion people (who aren't even in it) no one will read it.  Your friends can't really subscribe to your notes like they would a blog either.  You simply have to hope that they pick it up from your news feed or something.  It's just not as user-friendly as the blog feature on sites such as Blogger, Livejournal or even Myspace.  With all the incredible things Facebook can do... giving you an easy to use blog is surprisingly, not one of them.  It seems to be making steps in that direction, at least.

Likewise, Facebook isn't free from Spam or Viruses or anything like that.  It's not uncommon to get friend requests from fake profiles or for a friend's account to start sending you bizarre Spam such as an invite to receive a free iPad (or Macbook, Wii, Laptop--whatever!).  It happens.  Facebook is not immune to the horrors of the internet.  You're gonna get the good and the bad. 

The last thing about Facebook that's interesting is the chat mechanism.  Thanks to this little thing you can chat with friends who happen to be logged onto Facebook at the same time as you.  The problem is that it's as basic as it gets.  There are also some issues with it.  Sometimes your friends will get an IM from you but won't be online (because they didn't log out but perhaps closed the webpage and are browsing around elsewhere... or YOUR Facebook account doesn't realize they've logged out).  It's a great way to connect and talk to people who may not be directly around you... but unfortunately IM programs such as AIM, MSN Messenger, Yahoo, Google Chat are far far better about this than Facebook ever will be.  And with programs such as Trillian able to connect to your Facebook account, it's just a lot easier to use one of these applications than it is to use the Facebook chat directly on Facebook itself. 

In the end Facebook is actually not so bad because of how it can be utilized.  It's much more expansive than most social networking sites.  Yes, you'll find people who have an absurd number of friends (and if you join you're apt to get many a friend request by people you either don't know or had one conversation with a long time ago) and you can sit there saying, "No one REALLY has THAT many friends," but at the very least it is nice to connect with other people.  Of course, you still have to be careful with people who do things like create false profiles, post pictures of people that aren't them, etc, but it comes with the territory of any social networking site.  At least Facebook goes beyond simply Facebook.  Even if you don't enjoy connecting with people, you can still get something out of it thanks to the things they share.  There's something for just about everyone.  You just have to be careful about what you put up there.  It's your profile, your privacy and you're in control.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm going to check on my own Facebook status. ]]> Wed, 26 May 2010 22:14:15 +0000
<![CDATA[ How Do You Use Twitter?]]>
Everybody is welcome to chime in if I missed anything! 

Two Things I've Learned About How Twitter is Different

1. Twitter is not your status update. Before recently, I used to think of Twitter as a platform similar to the Facebook status feature. I was wrong. While some people still use it to talk about what they're eating, what they're thinking and what they're seeing happen live - other folks are using Twitter to share links to articles, videos and websites that they feel their networks would find useful. 

For example, while Facebook may be the best place for you to say how mad you are about the new immigration law that was passed in Arizona, Twitter is a great place to share links to articles regarding reactions and protests. 

2. Twitter is not just for your friends.
You may not know everybody you interact with on Twitter. Unlike facebook, where everybody is your friend that you've accepted - Twitter interactions happen amongst strangers and people outside of your network. Use this to your advantage. The culture on Twitter is open and engaging, giving people the chance to potentially get into conversation with industry professionals, topic experts and fellow enthusiasts of whatever topic you're into. While Facebook may be for your friends in college, you can use Twitter to connect with CEO's of companies, bloggers on cancer research or folks who are training for the same upcoming 5k you are. 

Three Ways I Use Twitter Today

1. News Sources - It might sound crazy that a social network platform is now my source for news. But with the various news networks you can follow, the industry experts and the use of hastags that create trending topics - it's very easy to get a sense of what's happening in the world when glancing at what's being talked about on Twitter. Sometimes news gets updated and shared with faster on Twitter rather than watching on TV or searching on Google. 

2. Sharing Articles - The articles I share are pieces of information that show what I'm into. On facebook, your friends may not be into the work and causes that you're so deeply involved with. But on Twitter, the more you share about your personal interests, the more meaningful your following will be. Share things about advertising news, Los Angeles events and hip hop songs, and you can expect to attract and engage with agency professionals, city locals and hip hop fans that are just as interested as you are.

3. Asking for Advice - Putting a question out there that appeals to your following can really help give you some insight as to what information you're seeking. If many of your followers are gym goers, you can expect to find out what best time to go to your local gym is. I've gone out on a limb asking my Twitter network for simple questions, and for the most part they've always come through. 

These are just some of the ways I've used Twitter to interact with folks on the internet. It's worked out pretty well for me. But I know I'm missing some. What are some ways you use Twitter? I

 ]]> Fri, 14 May 2010 19:47:53 +0000
<![CDATA[ I'm on Facebook, I Tweet and I Digg 'em; therefore I am....]]> For years MySpace had taken the world by storm as the social networking giant, then came Facebook, Twitter, Digg and all those who came running in after them to cash in on the social media craze.  Myself, I joined Facebook almost two years ago, followed by Twitter and Digg last year.  I joined Facebook for family and friends as well as to reconnect with old friends and classmates.  I have even made some interesting networking contacts. 

:It seems that just about everyone and their mother has a Facebook account whether they keep it active and up-to-date is another thing.  I found it, as well as Twitter and Digg useful for publicizing causes that I support and circulating my written work once it's been published on the blogs that I write for, including  
A lot of celebriities seem to tweet on Twitter, you can catch their status updates regularly on cable's
E! Entertainment network as a ticker at the bottom of the screen.  If celebrities are breaking up, making up, making a film , etc.  you can catch it on Twitter.  Twitter has a limit of how much can be written on each tweet.  Ahhh, the social networking/social media craze-people don't even make phone calls or write letters anymore. They just text each other or post it on their Facebook or Twitter accounts.  Whatever you do, just don't post it that you're going on vacation in the Bahamas or out for the night with friends-you may come home to find your place robbed.  There is such as thing as TMI, folks. ( For those who don't know what TMI is, it's short for TOO MUCH INFORMATION!!!)


]]> Sat, 1 May 2010 18:58:08 +0000
<![CDATA[ Awesome Site]]> Love it.

]]> Thu, 29 Apr 2010 16:57:44 +0000
<![CDATA[Facebook Quick Tip by RecycleEverything]]> Wed, 28 Apr 2010 22:52:31 +0000 <![CDATA[ From Personal To Promotion Use]]>
I didn't get Twitter when I first got an account. It's got a learning curve that's curiously harder to grasp than I thought. I'm an avid Twitter user and for a number of reasons.

I refused to join this site until I discovered Alexz Johnson was on it. Most of the world doesn't know who she is yet, but to me she's one of the most talented musicians to come around in the last 10 years. That's for another post though and I have plenty of Reviews on here about her. The point is getting updates about her was incredibly difficult and hard to find without Twitter. Her manager also has a Twitter account that not only made finding information, news, and updates about her and her career very easy, but also created a simple and safe connection between myself and my favorite musician.

Now, people use Twitter for lots of different reasons. We're aware of the stereotypical way: "Watching paint dry", "picking my nose", that kind of update. Spammers have even programmed bots to find tweets with certain keywords in them and tweet those people with their ads. Some people use it as a sort of pseudochat. Finally, there's the business minded people who want to harness the power of this hugely populated service to promote themselves and make some money using the service.

I suspect the prospect of cash through Twitter is a popular topic so I'm going to directly cover that.

First, Twitter is not like other services and confusing it for something else will only cause you to be not Followed or blocked. No one wants to read a post from you where every one is an ad, a teaser to click a link to an affiliate product, or where you're simply not interesting. All of those will cause you to be unfollowed. It is a very social network, probably the most social of them all.

So I'm going to let all of you money chasers and future internet marketers trying to get a grip on this new media in on a secret. Interact with your followers, show them your personality, take an interest in them. John Reese has been preaching this mantra for years and it's completely true. If they like YOU and they grow to know YOU they'll trust you. You'll get followers who stick around. You'll definitely make a lot more new friends. You will be MUCH more successful.

That's not why you read this is it? Well, I'll let you in on another secret. Whatever you're promoting make sure it's something you're passionate about. They can SEE that. They'll know it by your enthusiasm for it. You can't replace passion, there is no substitute for really loving what you're promoting. If you believe in whatever market you're in and really want to get it out there for people to know about it they'll pick up on it.


I don't care if you're selling snow to eskimos. If you have passion for it and really love and believe in what you're selling, promoting, or just talking about, your followers will know it too. They'll know it by how you talk about it, how while not every tweet is a link or a product, it shows you really know this area well and love it. This quality is irreplacable and cannot be switched with anything else. People follow people who love what they do, what they're promoting, and really want to show their followers something of quality.

I'll get the general basics out of the way, but they're all secondary to the above. Can you still make money without the above? I'm sure you can, but you will have a fickle following and eventually find you need to move markets due to declining interest and low click through rates. So, here's the Twitter 101 crash course on using it for general internet marketing:

#1. Mix your posts with the current Trending  Topics for max exposure.
#2. Get lots of followers so you get a lot of click-throughs per post.
#3. Retweet.
#4. Make accounts based on niche.
#5. Follow celebrities.
$6. Use searches to find people talking about your niche.

That oughtta do it.

You'll get a lot more mileage if you take my previous advice though. You'll make more money with 500 followers who relate and like you than 100,000 followers who have little to nothing in common with you. How's that for a numbers game?

I've got a few accounts on Twitter and my favorite and most successful is the one I created as a mix of my personal account and one for a site I created for Alexz Johnson. I don't have a huge amount of followers, but I'm a hardcore fan of Alexz, I search for people who love her as well, and I watch that account like a hawk. I note and look at each follower I get. Aspiring marketers would surely love to have the account I have because I'm friends and connect with the vast majority of my followers. I post what I'm passionate about and promote when I think it's necessary.

Twitter puts you closer to the people than anything else. If you're not a good people person or at customer relations it's not for you. Twitter proves direct marketing principles still work to perfection and only those who really care about their customers and products will survive.

It may not be what you wanted to hear, but I'm sure I already covered that in my list. At the very least you'll get good at writing headlines.]]> Tue, 20 Apr 2010 06:52:05 +0000
<![CDATA[Facebook Quick Tip by devora]]> Thu, 15 Apr 2010 18:24:38 +0000 <![CDATA[Facebook Quick Tip by EcoMama]]> Wed, 14 Apr 2010 22:47:22 +0000 <![CDATA[Twitter Quick Tip by EcoMama]]> Wed, 14 Apr 2010 20:12:36 +0000 <![CDATA[Oh No They Didn't (ONTD) Quick Tip by ariajuliet]]> Wed, 14 Apr 2010 18:38:52 +0000 <![CDATA[Wikipedia Quick Tip by ariajuliet]]> Wed, 14 Apr 2010 18:37:46 +0000 <![CDATA[Mashable Quick Tip by mweber82]]> Tue, 13 Apr 2010 02:40:36 +0000 <![CDATA[Flickr Quick Tip by mweber82]]> Tue, 13 Apr 2010 02:38:52 +0000 <![CDATA[Yelp Quick Tip by mweber82]]> Tue, 13 Apr 2010 02:37:32 +0000 <![CDATA[Twitter Quick Tip by charlierobinson]]> > #socadl good resource :)]]> Sat, 10 Apr 2010 08:41:47 +0000 <![CDATA[Facebook Quick Tip by charlierobinson]]> Sat, 10 Apr 2010 08:41:04 +0000 <![CDATA[ How to deal with the Over Tweeters (you know who you are)]]> After reading Kitty_Salinas' micro review I though it would be helpful to share how I deal with the over tweeters or TMI'ers. Below is my six step program that I have been using for a few weeks and it seems to help.
  1. Stop sending them to your device via SMS (in my case the iPhone), they talk way too much to be constantly notified of their updates... (See step 5)
  2. Create and use Twitter lists to segment the people you follow into smaller more relevant groups of people. I recommend adding each person you follow to at least one list to get rid of the generic 'All' view, which with TMI'ers is pretty useless. 
  3. Create separate Lists for the over sharers you follow (I created 2 lists, 1 for people i think i should clip 'OntheBubble' and the other for people that i know over share but on occasion have some useful information 'TMICity'
  4. On your compute use TweetDeck and display each group in a separate column, no need to ever look at the raw 'all' feed.
  5. On your device, get an app that supports lists (still looking for one that will support alerts and notifications for specific groups) 
  6. Most importantly... every new person you follow drop them in an 'evaluation group' before you put them in any of your high quality groups. This will give you the ability to quickly see what the 'newbies' are saying and how often they pipe up. If it's TMI clip 'em
Overall this segmentation should help eliminate and isolate the TMI'ers. Plus it can be fun to threaten your friends with making your 'TMI' list.

Try it out and let me know if it helps or what you would do differently.
]]> Fri, 12 Feb 2010 17:58:50 +0000
<![CDATA[ One Stop Celeb Gossip with Some Pretty Snarky & Entertaining Commentary]]> Google search or just snooping around LiveJournal (LJ).  I used to be a really active LJ user, so I understood the format and got into it straight away.  Plus, their having awesome content and commentary didn't hurt either.

What I love about ONTD is that most of their approximately 150 a day posts are worth reading.  They're all generated from the community's 50,000 members (no, that's not an exaggeration in number).  Sometimes the content is from first hand experience, but most of the time, they're from other celebrity gossip blogs (posts from Perez Hilton are, however, not allowed.  Hmmm, I wonder why!) and various pop culture sites, and are only posted after being approved by a moderator for quality control measures.  They've even broken some news stories, such as Peengate 2006 and Jaime Lynn Spear's pregnancy.

You know what's even more awesome than the blog itself though?  The community within it.  Five years ago, it was mostly really active LJ users commenting on the posts, but as the blog started gaining more popularity, it pretty much became a free for all with many people seemingly creating LJ accounts just to comment on ONTD.  The latter fact doesn't really promote much user accountability, yet oddly, most of the people who comment aren't trolls, and when there are actual trolls, they stick out like a sore thumb.  But I digress.  Here's more of why I think ONTD is awesome:

  • The Comments --  Each post gets at least 100 comments.  Others, thousands.  Most of the comments are hilariously snarky and witty.  How people can come up with that stuff, I'll never know, but I love it.  Sometimes instead of words, an image such as a lolcat, a gif such as the one of Michael Jackson eating popcorn in the Thriller video, or a Youtube video will be used.
  • How T.I. Can Do Anything and "Remains Sexy While Doing So" -- The running joke is that no matter what T.I. does in any post, whether he appears in court, films a new video, or goes the gas station, he still manages to remain sexy while doing so.
  • The Fan Signs -- When ONTD folks run into celebrities, they always try to get the celeb to pose for a picture while holding a sign that says, "I <3 ONTD".  Believe it or not, ONTD has a whole album of these pictures.  Good job, ONTDers!
  • The Twilight Fans -- I, for one, have never watched Twilight before and don't really care to, but it's amusing to watch these ONTD peeps go all fangirl and fanboy over it.  Knowing them though, something tells me that most of them are in on the joke over the hype.  Still hilarious though.  A lot of comments with sparkley text get posted.
  • FFAF -- Free For All Friday (hey, that's today!), where users can go crazy and post whatever they want in the comment section of that FFAF post.  Well, except for porn or spam, and no fighting.  Sometimes they're themed.  Usually pretty entertaining though.

With all that said, I leave you with the most amazing ONTD post.  Ever.  I present you with... Kermit Bale.  Warning: it's pretty epic.

...You're welcome.]]> Fri, 11 Sep 2009 20:53:48 +0000
<![CDATA[ Whatcha Wanna Know?]]> sixth most visited website in the world, and with good reason.  Whenever you have to write a paper for a class, or know a quick fact, Wikipedia is probably one of the first places you go.  Here on, there are Wikis for each topic, but most of us probably just head off to Wikipedia for a quick fill in.  Some of you, I know, use Wikipedia when writing some of your reviews (or, for movie goers you probably use IMDB... maybe both).  Of course, wikipedia has had its share of problems, and we'll get to that.  First, let's talk about the website as a whole. 

Wikipedia has millions of articles in several different languages.  As I write this review there are over 3,000,000 articles in English.  And when you go into the sites main page you are thrust into a world of vast knowledge.  On the main page there's an article of the day, learn about what is in the news, and a little factoids of what happened "On this day..."  Then there's a section called "Did You Know..."  The site is organized with all this stuff, but chances are most of you are going to head on over to the search section and look up whatever it is you want.  

You can find almost anything on wikipedia.  You can even look up wikipedia on wikipedia.  And each article consists of a small wiki at the start and then several subsections.  For celebrities you can look up things like their education and how they grew up, up to their career (and downfall if they had one).  For movies you can always look up a plot synopsis, reception and little trivia tidbits (but Wikipedia won't replace IMDB any time soon).  Most of the time it's quick information, but some articles have a lot of detail to them.  If you actually looked up Alexander Hamilton you'll see that his profile is HUGE.  And going through it there are several links to many other articles within it (highlighted words similar to how I linked you to Alexander Hamilton's profile).  But then the question and the common Wikipedia criticism comes up... is it right?

It's very true that Wikipedia allows just about anyone to come in and edit any article.  On the other hand, it seems to slip people's mind that Wikipedia also has a staff that goes around and cleans up as well.  On the other hand, that isn't to say that Wikipedia is never wrong.  Sometimes it is but this comes from the fact that a lot of people who go to the website don't appear to know just how to use the site in the first place.  Wikipedia themselves states their site shouldn't be used for serious research, but again, this comes from people not knowing how to use it.  As you read through articles you might notice superscript numbers.  These are citations, and at the bottom of every article you can find all the references.  So if you click on superscript 1 you'll be taken down to reference 1.  This means you can actually go to the place where the information came from in the first place (if it came from another website).  If it comes from books, they're cited accordingly as well.  If you're ever skeptical to what you're reading on wikipedia... go to the source it came from.  On the other hand, some claims don't have a citation.  That doesn't mean it isn't true, but it means you've got little options on double checking what it is your reading. 

Other criticisms of Wikipedia, aside from the fact that you could read something that isn't true, has a lot to do with who is actually editing some articles.  Wikipedia now has a wikiscanner that allows them to track IP addresses and figure out who is editing what.  On profiles related to certain public and political figures Wikipedia discovered that biased sources were coming in and either deleting critical information or actually changing up information to slam certain people (Fox News and MSNBC anchors immediately come to mind...).  This is seen by some as a potential danger in the editing of pages.  Wikipedia tries to maintain neutrality, but some have alleged that it has a political liberal bias.  For those who believe that there's always Conservapedia (which is apparently some kind of joke--there's a portion in the article on Earth which suggests that the earth is flat).  In terms of Bias, that's a little hard to state about Wikipedia.  For every issue you look up, they do go into both sides (sometimes they have their own articles for the opposition), so it's not like you can't find the other side of any particular issue if you decide you're curious and want to look into it. 

Yet for what it's worth most of the time the information is quite useful.  Especially when you can go to the sources.  And while people complain that "Anyone can edit it..." (which includes idiots, apparently) they never seem to realize Wikipedia has a staff that will get rid of A LOT of misinformation.  There's a huge community and staff that runs Wikipedia.  So while "idiots" can edit the site, chances are what they edit in won't actually be there for very long in the first place.  Or it'll be changed later.  There are certain contributors to wikipedia who spend a lot of time verifying information.

This brings about the only real problem with Wikipedia in terms of information... it's often changing.  One moment you might read something, but go back to the article a few days later and you'll find that the section you got your information from--references and all--is gone.  This is part of the reason why some don't recommend wikipedia itself as a source.  But again, the whole point of using wikipedia is to check the sources on any particular article.  The sources aren't there just to show that people researched, they're there so that you can go and check them out and verify them for yourself.  In short a lot of the criticism of Wikipedia's "Anyone can edit the articles," seems to be laziness on the part of people who don't want to check the sources. 

Then, of course, there's the criticism I throw out to almost any online community.  The anonymity of wikipedia can make the community a pain in the ass to deal with.  The good news is that those going to Wikipedia are not nearly as interseted in the community.  You can discuss any and every article with other members of the site, but Wikipedia isn't exactly immune from... well... assholes.  On the other hand Wikipedia is quite tame when compared to the atmosphere on websites like Politico,, Gaming Websites or the baords on the IMDB.  The community can be harsh but at least they're a bit more tolerable.  As with most places, it really depends on the discussion and where it's going.  

Wikipeida is also a VERY global site.  It's the sixth most visited website in the WORLD.  As a result, you're apt to see a lot of different views expressed in discussions and learn quite a bit about other cultures (countries also have their own articles--go figure). 

The best part about Wikipedia, however, is that it's an open access online encyclopedia.  Anyone can hop on it and look up something.  Several other online Encyclopedias require you to pay, and don't give nearly as much information.  Wikipedia is free. 

The last thing to note is that Wikipedia has several sister websites.  On the page I've provided you can go and check out all these places for yourself, and I'd recommend it. 

It's nice to be able to have a place that provides people with a lot of information and knowledge and gives them the chance to check up on these things.  While Wikipedia can be edited by anyone, those who use it the way it's intended to be used will find it is a great tool for quick information and easy access.]]> Wed, 2 Sep 2009 22:53:46 +0000
<![CDATA[ OH MY GOD WE CAN REVIEW LUNCH TOO!]]>  It was in late December, and when I first got here, I must admit, I was not nearly as impressed.  But they were gracious enough to send me an invite and so I accepted.  Because I was curious.  The site was, for the most part nice, and they just kept improving.  Are there any immediate problems I have with the site now?  Well, not that haven't already been addressed before I could write this review.  And the best part is that they continue to improve the site in numerous ways but so far have yet to go overboard like say... Facebook did with all their applicatioins and newsfeed.  Rather Lunch is a bit simple.  

As many of you probably did, I used to just post reviews on  Believe it or not I do very little shopping online.  I was interested in Amazon because I liked reviewing.  However, if truth be told, while Amazon is a great place to shop, it's a nightmare of a place to have discussion and to comment on what other people think of certain things.  While I still love going there to review, I've pretty much reserved myself to refrain from commenting on message boards or other peoples reviews (though sometimes I can't help it).  For the most part Amazon is a great online shopping mall, but a terrible place to talk to people.  There was something issing from was it... oh my god, yes!  Respect!  

But to go over  The first couple of reviews I posted I actually had fun.  I had even more fun when I realized I could insert video and pictures.  Although this isn't always necessary (most people have a pretty good idea of what they're reading about before reading) it's still something that's very useful that you can't do on  Amazon has video reviews, sure, but you don't need that.  With Lunch... if I'm say... reviewing a movie, I can pull the trailer from youtube and post it.  That way those interested in reading my review but don't exactly know what the movie is can watch the trailer.  If I review a video game, a quick google search can help me find screenshots or even youtube videos and trailers of just what it is.  It may not seem like much, but when reviewing video games and movies those visual aids can help tremendously.

I left for a time.  I can't put my finger on why.  But then one day I decied to come back (because my movie reviews get no acclaim on amazon and seemed more open to soeone saying, "You know I just didn't like it that much..." thus I reviewed Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen).  I've always had this view of being analytical.  I've not really been big on giving a straight out opinion.  I've always been about the big questions: Who, What, When, Where, Why and How.  I don't have to answer all those questions but I should answer most of them.  Who, for example, was Michael Jackson?  What did he do?  When was he around?  Where was he popular?  And how was he popular?  Beyond that, I believe it's important to let someone know about something.  Not just what it is, but why it might appeal to them.  Or why it might even appeal to others.  In short, my opinion isn't the only thing that matters.  It is why in most of the comments I leave I like to question things. was a bit more open to people actually doing that sort of thing.  Where people came to discuss, but actually did it in a respectful way.  The community as a whole gets a +5 for simply being open to what just about anyone has to say about anything.

Yet what struck me the most about Lunch, and why I've suddenly been addicted... is that you really can review just about anything.  And if what you want to review isn't here?  You can create a data point for it and review it yourself (I was so proud of myself when I created my first data point--I had Ice Cream... Mini Chocolate Chip Ice Cream... can I review that here too?  What?  I can?  ARE YOU SERIOUS!?).  Yes, I'm advertising to my reviews... but it's not because I want you to read them... it's because I want to know what you think.  It's because I love discussion.  And because linking to other locations is easy.  Also I have a strange sense of humor.

It's just a place to express opinions and give analysis.  And yet in doing so most people go well beyond the lengths needed to make sure their opinions are backed up.  When you read a review of Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen notice how every single review (postive and negative alike) goes into great detail about where they come from, and even compliment other reviewers.  And they do it without insulting each other, and with class.  You can find this sort of thing for most any data point. 

That's not to say there is no room for improvement.  Certainly there is.  I can't think of any immediate thing.  Sometimes inserting pictures and video can still be problematic, but it isn't nearly as problematic as it once was.  It's easy to connect and comment on other people.  Basically the community is a lot easier to get along with.  Which is more than I can say for several internet forums.  
Part of the reason why I came back was just because of the community in and of itself.  The first time I got a comment on Amazon it was some guy telling me to kill myself or something like that.  I don't remember, but it was a guy who didn't like that I'd given his favorite video game less than five years (I gave it four) and I guess he just really really really hated that.  He had an angry face.  Uhh... like this one:

So I smiled and gave a reply.  It was a happy reply with a happy face.  Like this one:

Note how my face is so much bigger.

But the guy just kept insulting.  After getting so many nasty comments, I'd had enough of the Amazon community and came here to lunch.  Where I have a bit more freedom and the community is nicer.  Maybe because here I'm actually discussing with adults?  I don't know. 

Anyway, so far the place is pretty good.  It's easy to get a review posted, and there are updates to tell you when people comment, reply to your comments, when they tell you your review was helpful or not... it's just a lot of fun overall.

The last thing I'd like to compliment is the voting system.  On several websites, the voting system is... well... horrible.  Lunch isn't perfect, but at least it makes sure that you can't partake in campaign voting (or at least it's harder to do so).  The voting system here is a little better. 

This marks perhaps the shortest review I've written since I've returned.  This was meant to be a bit more fun.  As I believe that fun is something we can all afford to have every once and a while.  So far so good.  I'm hoping that the improvements keep coming in the future, but that the staff doesn't get too carried away the way places such as Myspace or Facebook have.]]> Fri, 3 Jul 2009 08:42:59 +0000
<![CDATA[ A Quick Lunch]]> I blogged about on my personal blog (Sharrie.TV) 2 days ago.
Here it is:
As some of you might have know, I was into travelogues many years ago. Spent majority of my waking hours on VirtualTourist. Made some great friends along the way too & got to see many parts of the world which I otherwise wouldn't have step into!

Well, the boss JR Johnson sold it off (I believe he did unless I got my facts wrong!) and is beginning to launch another site. So, he has invited me over to Lunch! Sorry about the delay of posting of this post. I've been otherwise engaged & have been investigating about the potential of Lunch. The verdict?

Lunch is still in its infancy. A beta version as it is appropriately labelled. There are some fine tunings (as with our selection on the menu when we go lunch) that need to be ironed out. And imho, narrowed its selection into groups (remember about going to a restaurant that offers too many selections to the extent that we are at a loss as to what to order? yep, i got that feeling after 2 days navigating the site & trying to write some reviews. It's a little big (even at this initial stage!) and in disarray. It definitely has potential. It'd be great if I get a map when I enter the compound though. At times, I feel lost! It's like going to WDW without a map! 
What exactly is Lunch? It's central theme is quite similar to VirtualTourist. A platform for interested party to voice themselves (in VT case, about travel & the travel relatede) on anything (literally under the sun) they are interested in. In other words, blogging & rating about whatever that caught your attention, be it good or bad. If Lunch is able to draw crowds & tons of audience who turn into writers, then it can be great site. The most crucial issue, imho, is how to manage the site when it gets real big & messy. Trust me, from my many years of experience on VT, it can be real messy (without even getting too big)! All in all, best of luck to JR Johnson! I hope you can make Lunch into our main meal of the day!
An update:
I'm still having problems accessing Lunch from work. Darn! But I'm upgrading the rating to 4 due to a cool feature which I like very much here. It's the play ExhilaRATE games which I only discovered after putting up this review earlier last week. ExhilaRATE makes rating stuff you are interested in FUN! Instead of searching for the items you'd like to rate, grouping similar stuff into a game entices one to rate. I love rating things out there in the world. But not if I've to go searching for every single data point & have problems finding the exact one I'm looking for! So, kudos to the guy/lady who comes up with this game! Love it! In fact, I'm looking forward to making more games now... made 3 alone yesterday! 
Cirque du Soleil 25th Anniversary
Last Vegas Entertainment at its best!
What's for breakfast?
Check them out & start rating to your heart's content! :-) 
]]> Thu, 23 Apr 2009 15:54:36 +0000
<![CDATA[ Be Afraid... Be very Afraid...Bwahahaha!!!!!]]>

Please consider that this is a fictionalized account of how came to be.

Once upon a time, there was an empty space in the information super-highway…

Two exciting creative women met in the world of flashing lights..

One was called Healthy Rache.

Another was called LingEatsCake.

Healthy Rache insists that this empty spot in the cyberspace be made into her own image that it be made "Healthy" and full of energy and life.

LingEatsCake insists that it be filled by all the sweetness of life--love and all the good stuff.

There raged a war between the two Queens that lasted many years.

One day, LingEatsCake and HealthyRache had a meeting and thought of reaching a compromise. A being called DesignDude came along to aid the two lovely ladies.

Many hours pass and the trio became hungry and were found by ARichards…since it was lunch time, all they thought of was having lunch. Now the foursome couldn't decide on what to have for lunch…HealthyRache wanted a salad, Ling wants cake and DD wanted a burger.

Then, along came JRJ who says why not everything and listen to everyone's opinion.

Thus, Lunch was born.

Once it was built, many people came…sharing, sharing, making friends and having fun.

Lunch was ever improving--ever growing--more and more people came and Lunch improved more and more…always accommodating to other folks, always grabbing videos off the alternate universe of youtube. MySpace is in peril now that Twitter has become a friendly neighboring universe…

With Count Orlok always giving suggestions which made DesignDude work harder…

with trashcanman always overloading the space in the internet.

However, Horror Masters Mike-B and Dave79 threatens to overrun the Lunch universe.

With Scotman appearing out of nowhere to wreak more Havoc…

Along came the mighty Woopak--who is now making a fool out of himself and QueenBFlix whom we still don't know how she looks like…

Methinks woopak is just high on TheraFlu.

Congrats to the Lunch team--staff, ambassadors…ALL!!

Sorry, I'd like to mention everyone else but the comedy is ruining my mysterious image.

Lunch-thank you for FEEDING OUR CURIOUSITY and inspiring friendship.

Some of the Coolest folks I've had the privilege to know but haven't even met in person yet!!

(I'm so corny)

]]> Fri, 20 Mar 2009 06:42:19 +0000
<![CDATA[ Yelp Demystified]]>
For really active Yelpers who contribute positively to Yelp, they may be in the running to join the Yelp Elite Squad (must be 21 and over!).  Though nobody (except probably HQ) is 100% sure how Elite members are chosen, it's definitely a perk to be one!  For one, you get invited to Elite events (to be discussed later).  Oh, and you get a shiny Elite badge on your profile.  Plus you get to tell everyone that you're Elite :D

Besides reading and writing reviews, Yelp has a great community:  "Compliments" can be sent to one another.  Yelpers can FUC (vote each other's reviews Funny, Useful, and/or Cool, and yes, the sexual innuendo is intentional) each other.  A message board is available to vent, post news articles or ask for advice (though people can get snarky and start drama, I suggest getting a bowl of popcorn because sometimes, it can be REALLY good >:D)

And my favorite part of Yelp?  The events!  Living in an area full of Yelpers has its perks because there are enough of them to create events!  There are Elite (Yelp-sponsered) and non-Elite events (non-Yelp-sponsered).  Whether it's an Elite event or not, I just love getting to mingle with Yelpers!  I've actually met quite a number of friends off of Yelp and would highly recommend it to people who are new to the area and want to get out and meet people.
Elite events are organized by lovely and gracious community managers and held at a wide variety of venues, from bars and restaurants, to spas and even museums.  There are always free munchies and an open bar.  Sometimes, you get to bring home goody bags with Yelp schwag, such as Yelp clothing, Yelpstick (Yelp chapstick), Yelp shot glass... and the list goes on.  Occasionally, these events are themed, like masquerade, pirate, ugly sweater or 80's.  Whatever it is, I love dressing up!

Non-Elite events, better known as UYEs (unofficial Yelp event) are more across-the-board.  On the events page, anyone can post an event and anyone say that they're "In" or that the event "Sounds Cool".  UYEs have consisted of everything from mac 'n cheese tours to sake tasting, and even strip club hopping, though my favorite UYE would have to be the good ole DYL.  DYL stands for "Destroy Your Liver" and it happens every Friday during happy hour.  Gracious Yelpers organize these at a different bar every week and people can just come and go as they please.  All bars posted are always off of a BART or MUNI stop so that no one has an excuse to drink and drive.  Gotta love those socially responsible Yelpers!

So... Anymore questions as to why I *heart* Yelp?]]> Sat, 14 Feb 2009 09:33:41 +0000
<![CDATA[ The Best Photosharing Site Out There]]>
  • The community: I can share pictures with others with common interests, get comments and feedback on my pictures and vice versa.
  • Great user interface.
  • Easy to upload.
  • High resolution photos.
  • I can view and retrieve my photos in several different sizes, including the original.
  • I can edit my pictures on Picnik through their site if necessary.
  • The organizing feature is SUPER handy.
  • It's easy to create sets and collections and to organize them.
  • I can do batch edits.
  • I can do all sorts of cool things through their partner sites, such as make books and stickers with my photos.
  • Tags make it super handy to look for my photos.
  • I like being able to give titles and descriptions to photos, not to mention geotag them.
  • Most important of all, I love how easy it is for me to sort through my photos, and how easy it is to share them with others.

Flickr has free accounts, but I love having a Pro account, which costs $25 a year or $48 for two years.  Why?  Because with the Pro account, I can upload an unlimited amount of photos, plus I get all those features mentioned above, several of which the free account does not have.  The Pro account is totally worth it!]]> Fri, 19 Dec 2008 09:00:20 +0000
<![CDATA[ I can blog from my cellphone!]]>
-It's fun to update!  Currently, it can be updated through the web, certain instant messenger services, and through SMS.  Great for alleviating boredom!
-Great for lazy writers as each tweet must be 120 characters or less, this also makes for succinctness!
-Conversations between twitter-ers can be had.

-It seems to always be down.
-Sometimes tweets can't be erased
-Accounts can't be erased (at least for now) because of a glitch.]]> Thu, 11 Dec 2008 06:01:33 +0000