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528px-Punishment_sisyph

So here’s the deal.  A psychology professor at the University of New Mexico sent out the following fat-shaming tweet: Dear obese PhD applicants: if you didn’t have the willpower to stop eating carbs, you won’t have the willpower to do a dissertation #truth. This statement is absurd as it is obnoxious. Even if you buy into the idea that obesity represents a character flaw, that anyone who is obese must have become so out of a lack of “willpower,” there are too many successful obese people in the world for this to be remotely true. Plenty of fat people have written dissertations. #truth. So this guy is a jerk, stipulated. Still, I’m not sure that even I would be ready to lay on him the battery of punishments he is being subjected. He is being required to: Not serve on any committee involving the admission of graduate students to the…

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peter-thiel

Peter Thiel is no big fan of Twitter. He started an investment fund with the motto, “We were promised flying cars, and instead what we got was 140 characters,” indicating his dissatisfaction at the level of innovation that a company like Twitter represents. Even so, he believes that the company’s $10 billion current evaluation is “about right.” And he has more confidence in its future than he does some other organizations: Peter Thiel: Twitter will outlast the New York Times In a debate with Andreessen at the Milken Institute Global Conference Monday, Thiel, a co-founder of PayPal, said he expects that Twitter’s roughly 1,000 employees will have jobs a decade from now. The business case for Twitter is solid, Thiel said. He contrasted the future of Twitter with that of The New York Times, a print media vanguard that he says is not guaranteed a future in the digital age….

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new_twitter_logo

We knew this would happen eventually. A company is hiring a 6-figure management position, and they’re not taking resumes — paper or online. And no, they’re not looking at LinkedIn profiles, either. (Not even Jobster profiles.) It’s all about the tweets: “The paper résumé is dead,” Vala Afshar, chief marketing officer at Enterasys,” told Bruce Horovitz at USA Today. “The Web is your résumé. Social networks are your mass references.” For the next month, Enterasys — a wireless network provider — will be considering applicants for a six-figure senior social media position, but no paper résumés will be accepted. Instead, the company has decided to recruit solely via Twitter. Jennifer Grabowski, a spokesperson for the company, tells us that candidates need to have a minimum Klout score above 60, a minimum Kred influence score of 725, a Kred outreach of at least eight, and more than 1,000 active Twitter followers in order to be considered. Enterasys is hoping to…

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stretch

This week I attended a lecture at the American Academy of Arts and Sciences about the The Evolution of the Internet: Emerging Challenges and Opportunities. Speakers Tim Berners-Lee and David D. Clark spoke about how the Internet has evolved in ways far beyond the original vision for enabling the sharing of packets of information into a tool that virtually all of us use and depend on every day for all sorts of different things. They continued with a discussion about open data and visibility across the web and how there are immense amounts of data available and if this could be accessible to everybody, so much more could be achieved. Much like open communication and collaboration within an organization, often all the information needed to make the “right” decision exists, but it has been broken up and used in different places, rather than all pulled together into one project. Berners-Lee…

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facebook_logo

Alexander Haislip writing at TechCrunch says that Silicon Valley Can Do Better Than Facebook. He makes some interesting points, including an analysis of who is enriched by TV advertising vs. Facebook advertising — leading to the perhaps unexpected conclusion that we should all be watching more TV and spending less time on Facebook! He also compares how much time is spent generating content on Facebook versus Wikipedia, crunches that against a hypothetical Wikipedia valuation of $7 billion, and concludes that Facebook users could be generating content worth more than  $6 billion every day if they would just stop “liking” Starbucks and get serious. But so what? Even if they could generate that kind of value, why should they? With both Wikipedia and Facebook, the same principle applies where the monetary value of the content generated by the user base is concerned: they never see a penny of it. Wikipedia users…

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susannahbreslin_136

Forbes career blogger Susannah Breslin (sort of) explains why people get bad advice. Actually, she explains why some people get no advice…from her. Basically, they write meandering requests, they don’t offer anything in return, and they refuse to comply with her terms. All of which is fair enough, of course. Still, she must get a lot of these requests, and they must be very irritating to her, to elicit this level of prickly condescension: If you’re asking someone you don’t know for advice in an email, that person is probably more successful than you are. Or, at the very least, they know more about something than you. Because they’re at least moderately successful, you could assume they’re also busy. Yeah. If you ask somebody for advice, you’re acknowledging that they’re smarter and more important than you are. Dumb, unimportant people shouldn’t expect anything from smart, important ones. (The nerve.) Where…

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drawsomething

Doing no more research than reading a random Tweet on the subject (so disclaimers apply to the following numbers) we see this interesting progression: Time it took AOL to get to a million users: nine years Time it took Facebook to get to a million users: nine months Time it took Draw Something to get to a million users: nine days Now they’ve been bought. And they’re up to more than 20 million users. (Pinterest starts to look kind of anemic by comparison.) Will we be surprised in the near future when some new entity signs up a million new users in nine hours? Probably not. Nine minutes? Wow, could that happen? Nine Seconds? I wouldn’t bet against it.Read More…

thelist2

Most important subjects are best represented in list form. The items presented here are no exception to that. 1. Sasquatch He’s elusive, mysterious, intensely private. Does that remind you of anyone? I think you see where I’m going with this. 2. Network It’s probably the most important thing you can do. And if you don’t know how to network…well, then that’s all the more reason to network. It’s the best way to learn how to network. 3. That Embarrassing Thing That Happens All too often. And always at exactly the wrong moment. Or, when you think about it — the right moment. 4. Cut the Stress Sure, it’s easier said than done. But you need to stop stressing out so much. Now. And don’t tell me you’re not stressed. Listen, denial is not a river in Egypt, okay? So knock it off with the stress already. 5. Duct Tape You…

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Source: Wikimedia Commons

The Problem They are exploiting us! Why we all work for Facebook for free On this understanding we can certainly position the users of Facebook as laborers. If labor is understood as ‘value producing activity’, then updating your status, liking a website, or ‘friending’ someone, creates Facebook’s basic commodity. It produces marketing data about you, which they can leverage for market research purposes and to better target advertising you might be interested in. It also produces an audience, as your ‘friends’ receive updates, follow your links, or log on to Facebook to join a conversation. This is why Facebook adds ever new functions; Zuckerberg wants us to spend as much time on his platform as possible, as time is literally money. A  Solution Facebook needs to start paying us. Well, why not? According to the analysis provided here, we’re each worth about $3.79 a year to Facebook. Facebook should keep about half…

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mrclean

This headline says a lot: P&G To Lay Off 1,600 After Discovering It’s Free To Advertise On Facebook First off, anyone who’s been paying for advertising and who has just “discovered” that creating a Facebook presence doesn’t cost anything maybe ought to be among those being let go. In fact, maybe he should be first. But of course, the headline is just a provocative take on the matter, and is probably unfair to P&G’s CEO, Robert McDonald. What is certain is that the company has been spending a lot on advertising — around $10 billion a year — and has had very little to show for it. The linked article cites a 4% increase in sales over the past two years. By way of reference, that $10 billion reflected a 24% increase in advertising spend over previous years. McDonald claims to have learned his lesson from the famous Old Spice…

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