• Twitter responds to #DMCA violations? It’s not news

    Twitter DMCA ViolationThere has been a lot of buzz recently about freelance author @RunOlgaRun who noticed her joke on Twitter being shared without credit. She asked Twitter to take it down as a violation of her copyright and they responded by replacing the tweet in violation with the text. “Tweet has been withheld in response to a report from the copyright holder.” . The tweet below was shared by user @PlagiarismBad.   It quickly went viral on Twitter and was picked up by a slew of news agencies, including Time magazine and many others as a new revelation of Twitter policy. There’s no question that Plagiarism IS bad and Twitter has been responding to DMCA violations for a long time. With a little research I found tweets back to 2012 and this post by Gigaom about this message from @Mikko in 2012. Mikko Hypponen is CRO and security firm F-Secure and was apparently testing out Twitter’s newly announced DMCA policy. So yes, Olga is getting a lot of press right now about a fairly lame joke that went viral and re-opened the discussion on intellectual property rights on Twitter and other social networks. But it’s not new to Twitter at all. Bottom line? Plagiarism is bad. Attribution is good. Be good.
  • Remove a business page from Facebook business manager

    facebook business pageFacebook business manager was created to make it easier for admins to manage more than one page from a single dashboard. It also made it easy to access your ads manager for multiple pages all in one place. It seemed like a good idea at the time but there are plenty of people who aren’t very happy with it, and once you add a page to the business manager there doesn’t seem to be an easy way to remove it! I’ve had several questions emailed to me about this and on the Facebook help site people are asking how to do this too. So here’s the skinny. If you want to remove the primary page you create a brand new page, make that one the primary page and then remove the page you really care about. Seems convoluted to me, but there it is. How do you remove one of several pages from your business manager? It’s actually easy. Go to Business.Facebook.com and select settings, then pages. For all of the pages except your primary page you’ll see a button to remove the page from your business account. Click it and you’ll see a pop-up asking if you’re sure. If you do this you won’t have access from your business manager anymore. Now go to the page you just removed and voila! You’re free of the dreaded business manager. You can change your settings on the page to always post as yourself or always post as the page. You can also use the drop down menu in the upper right corner to “use Facebook as page” just like you did before. Hope this was helpful to you!
  • Twitter adds a tool to deepen conversations

    Twitter commenting improved Twitter just added a feature that we Twitterholics have been dreaming of! No, its not the Twelfie Stick, though I’m sure lots of people actually wanted that one, it’s better. In the past responding to a tweet was a bit of a hassle. You’d either reply to the tweet knowing that anyone coming across that tweet later would see it entirely out of context, or you’d add a comment to a retweet and edit the heck out of the original tweet to get it all to fit. No more! Now when you hit the retweet icon you’ll see a new field with the option to add a comment to the original tweet, then simply click the tweet button and the message will be shared with your followers as a tweet. Followers will see both the original tweet and your comment together, making it much easier for them to add their own two cents. Nice huh? Improved twitter quotes Just like retweets you can delete your quote. Just find the more button on your tweet and you’ll see an option to delete. Easy peasy. Why should we care? This will allow a much richer conversation to happen on Twitter, and it holds the context of your message which will definitely lead to more discussion. And for those who simply hit retweet and forget about it, you’ll be prompted by the new field to maybe say something and add value to the conversation. It will be worth it, I promise.
  • 12 outstanding resources for free images for your blog

    Image via unsplash.com

    Image via unsplash.com

    You probably know better than to steal images from websites by now, and if you don’t you should read my post on copyright and images! If you already know to be cautious about copyright here are some great resources for free or close to free images for your social media accounts or blog. As you’ll see there is a growing trend away from traditional stock imagery towards artists providing copy free images to download as a way to give back and also to promote their own work. I for one applaud these artists for their generosity! StockSnap.io Displays Creative Commons CCO universal licensed images for download. You can submit your work here for use by others as well. They share the best of the best on Twitter too, and you can often find easily shareable unusual images there, click the link to go to the source. Unsplash goes against the stock repository concept by releasing just 10 high resolution images to the world each day as public domain. The images are fresh and almost always extraordinary. Splitshire also has lovely and unusual images free of copyright and downloadable. Images are sorted by category and browsing has been more fun than searching for specific topics. Let your eyes guide you to the right image instead of a preconceived idea. DeathtoStockPhotos was one of the first sites I found with this idea of a photographer generated subscription service. Sign up and get images delivered to your in box on a regular basis. Images are fresh and trendy and beautifully shot. Again, you have to get out of the stock photo mentality here. These photos are abstract and unique. They also have occasional odds and ends like handwritten fonts available through partnerships. All in the spirit of supporting creativity. Pond5 is a stock media site and includes images, video, music, 3-D, After effects templates and audio clips. Some are for sale and others are in the public domain. The site is really fun if you’re looking for something different than the usual stock clips and licensing is very clearly defined on each item complete with source and use guidelines. JayMantri is a photographer who posts 7 images once a week for download with a CCO license. Free to use for any purpose. LockAndStockPhotos are free images uploaded by AJ Montpetit as a way of giving back. He publishes his photos under the Creative Commons Sharealike license and requests a link back to his website. NewOldStock is a vintage photo collection thought to be free of copyright. Many are from recognized institutions including the National Library of Medicine and e3ach provides their copyrights for easy decision making. I’mFree supplies a curated collection of copy free images. They also provide unique editable website templates through their web app which are fully customizable. Pixabay is a searchable archive of photos, drawings and vector images that can be used without attribution through the Creative Commons Public Domain license. You may find sponsored images here that are licensed and for sale by stock agencies. Pixabay links to the stock agency for payment. PhotoPin. This site searches creative commons photos and allows you to download them in a variety of formats for use. This site also allows you to download the necessary text for attribution on the image to give proper credit to the creator. Be sure to do that. You can also buy images here starting at $1. Flickr is a photo repository and allows you to search by license, so you can find images that fit your needs. Read the copyright notices before you use the photo. Many are open source or attribution only. Some authors write their own rules here, including where you can and cannot use the image.
  • Is your blog or social account at risk of copyright violations?

    content pirate Image sharing is a huge part of social media isn’t it? And when was the last time you Googled to find just the right image to illustrate your point? Stop that. Stop it now! Why? Well simply put most of the images you find in a Google search may well have a copyright on them and if you don’t know the source and use it anyway you could be liable for violating copyright laws. Now before you laugh me off and move on, let me tell you a story. In 1997 one of the designers at our company searched for an image of an assembly plant and then downloaded it, modified it and used it in a project on our website. In 2005 I got a certified letter from Getty claiming ownership of the image and demanding $600 or a lawsuit would ensue. Even if we removed the image, they still demanded payment. It took a lot of digging through the archives to verify what had happened and even find the image. At that point the designer had left the company and we were left holding the bag. We paid the fine and made it policy to never use images without proper attribution again. What’s all this about copyright? Isn’t anything online covered by fair use? In short. NO. Here’s a link to the US Government PDF on copyright, you should read it. Basically any work be it writing, images, music or other forms of work can be copyrighted at the time of creation, and fair use is a limited term. Some feel that simply linking back to the creator’s website constitutes attribution and so “fair use” is indicated. That’s not always true. If the original creator has not give permission through licensing or sale fair use may or may not apply. What is fair use? Fair use is defined in section 107 of the copyright law. Specific uses like criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research may be considered fair use but it subjective, and not always easy to define. For example is blogging a form of news reporting? Let’s say you are reviewing a book and you grab the cover from the author’s website. The photo will not replace the original product (the book) or interfere with the author’s rights, so in essence this could be fair use. Your own photo of an art installment outside used to review that art piece may also be fair use. In general it’s simply better to get permission, use open source, purchase the rights or look for Creative Commons licenses in most cases. Where can I get images? If you’re looking for images check out some of these options. Open source Open source simply means the creator allows any and all use of the image without attribution or copyright. This often is the case with software where the original code is made publicly available so that other programmers can improve or build upon it. Public domain Public domain images can be marked as such by the creator, who then waives all rights to the image. They may also be particularly old images, those created by federal agencies etc and here’s a link to more detail on the public domain mark and it’s use. Creative Commons Another way to find images to use is to search for Creative Commons licensed images. There are several different licenses available for creators to choose from and you should familiarize yourself with each. Basically they range from images OK to use with attribution to the source for commercial and/or non commercial use to all rights granted images which you can use any way you like. Stock Stock images come in many forms and many price ranges. Some may be as little as a few cents each and others hundreds or thousands of dollars. It varies by the quality of the image and the perceived value. Clearly a newsworthy photo may have a higher price tag than a photo of a more traditional stock image. Some have limited time allotments and others allow you to purchase image rights indefinitely and use them in any way you choose. Check the rights on the image before you buy them to see what uses are allowed. Free options There are several places where you can get open source or creative commons images. Way to many to list here. Follow this link to my post 12 outstanding sites for free images.
  • Drop in Instagram followers? It’s a good thing. Really

    People are reporting some fairly significant drops in their Instagram followers over the last few weeks. Stop freaking out. It’s not just you, it’s across the board. I used the popular statistics program Iconosquare.com to check my own stats and here are the results. I gained 131 followers in the last 7 days and lost 111. Not so bad. Screenshot 2014-12-18 13.47.27 Are people upset?  Sure. Brands are upset and people who care about numbers over engagement are upset. Mase is really upset, he lost 1.5 million followers! In fact he got so upset he deleted his  account. Lots of people are worried that they’re suddenly boring and un-popular. That’s not it. (more…)
  • Buffer’s New Scheduler Tool

    Buffer SchedulingAs if Buffer wasn’t already an incredibly awesome tool in our social media management arsenal, it just made itself even more essential. Now when you open the Buffer app in your browser you’ll see two tabs at the top of the page. “Simple Composer” and “New Scheduler”. Simple Composer is the old version you’ve already been used to, you can quickly add a post to your buffer queue and it will go off at it’s scheduled time with the same text to any accounts you choose. The New Scheduler tab  allows you to share and re-share particular posts across your social networks at a time of your choosing. New Scheduler is going to be a game-changer. As you can see from the screenshot above, for each post I can choose which of my networks to share on at what time, and even re-share the post again at times I select. (more…)
  • Hello Ello! The Good, The Odd, The Ugly

    Hello Ello Every time a new social network pops up all of us early adopters have to check it out and Ello is not different. According to Vox, Ello is  seeing 31,000 new users per hour, so it’s the new hot property online. It’s my job to check out new networks for clients after all, or so I justify my obsession… What’s the deal with Ello? Ello was created as a bare-bones social network and since it’s in beta it’s a work in progress. Don’t expect you’re going to dive in and totally get it, and the network itself isn’t full of cues in how to use it, how to find your friends or even ways to engage once you do find them. Never the less, it’s interesting and worth poking around in. If you’re lucky enough to know someone with invites, check it out. Or go buy an invite on Fiverr or Ebay. I did a totally un-scientific poll of my friends and here’s what our initial feedback is. (more…)
  • No More Click-Bait on Facebook – 2 changes to newsfeeds

    be more interestingYou know those posts on Facebook that just gotta be clicked? They’re popularly known as click bait. You click them because you think you’re going to see something amaaazing, but when you get there it’s not what you thought at all and you leave. Facebook’s onto the fact that most of us hate click bait schemes. We’re tired of the shenanigans just to get a  click, and they’re putting their foot down. They’ve just announced two important changes to news feeds and Facebook page managers need to listen up. (more…)
  • You Can’t Make Us Like You Anymore

    be more interesting For quite a long time it’s been common for Facebook business pages to force users to “like” their fan page before gaining access to certain content, enter contests, etc. This was known as “likegating” and Facebook doesn’t like it anymore. The social network has announced they will no longer allow pages and apps to likegate or to force users to invite friends to like within an app, or tag their friends in a photo they aren’t actually in. Instead they encourage proper use. (more…)

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