Archive for the 'Digital' Category

19
Mar
14

“For quality control, this phone call is being recorded”…


“Good morning, you have reached Terranet, for sales dial 1, for support dial 2, for a psychiatrist dial 3. (The last one is my recommendation, strongly)
“For quality control, this phone call is being recorded”…

– Hello, this Rami, how can I help you?
– Um, hi, I purchased a new Cisco modem, and I would like you to guide me through the configuration please.
– It’s very easy. Just set the VCI and VPI…
– Woooa! Hold on. Set the what?

– (With an audible yawn) Set the VCI and VPI. Did you configure the modem?
– Huh? I’m calling you for that!
– Is it hooked?
– (No it’s not! It’s in the microwave getting defrosted, I would have loved to say) Yes it is. Hooked and I logged in to it via my browser. Shall I tell you the options I have and you tell what to do?
– (With the end of another long audible yawn) What do you have?
I start enumerating the options for every setting. I only heard his voice twice:
– VCI 0, VPI 35
– Is that it?
– Yes
– So now all I should do is connect to the Internet.
– Yeh
– Thank you

I hang up, reboot the modem and try connecting to the Internet. Nothing.

I call again:
“For quality control, this phone call is being recorded”…
– Hello, this Hussein, how can I help you?
– Excuse me, I was talking to Rami regard..
– Rami is busy on another line, how can I help you?
– Ok. So I got this Cisco modem and I configur…
– Hold on!
– Yes? This is Rami
– Oh hi! I spoke to you a while ago regarding a Cisco modem…
– Cisco modem? Regarding what?
– Configuration?
– Oh yeh. So…
– Well, it’s not working…
– Why did you get a Cisco?
– WHAT?… Because YOU guys told me, get a Cisco or a D-Link… So I got the Cisco…
– Yeh, but the THOMSON you have now is better….
– Ok. But I got the Cisco now, and it’s not connecting. The “Internet” light is off.
– Do you have phones at home?
– Yes. Why?
– Disconnect them all and retry?
– Excuse me?
– Yeh, you might have a “loop”
– A loop? Uumm, Uhun, yep. Cool. Ok.
A loop? I thought I was installing a modem, not knitting a pullover!
I disconnect all the phones at home, reboot the modem and try to connect again. Nothing.
I call again:
“For quality control, this phone call is being recorded”…
– Hello, this Samer, how can I help you?
– Can I speak to Rami?
– Moment…
– This is Rami, how can…
– Rami, it’s me again (I just mastered the cut-you-in-the-middle-of-a-sentence technique!) I disconnected all the phones, it’s still not working.
– Well, I don’t know (with such a lazy voice)… Get a technician… Or the modem is defective.
– Defective? It’s a brand new Cisco! All is working perfectly, but it stops at “Internet”
– Yeh, it might be defective. It happens…
– Oh. It does? I did not know that… Thank you anyway for your precious assistance Rami!
I hang up.
Welcome to the world of Lebanese ISP customer support!
If “For quality control, this phone call is being recorded”, all ISPs would be out of business by now…
25
May
11

NEWS IN THE DIGITAL AGE


THE CHEESY FACTS
Wassim Tabbarah, God rest his soul, in one of his plays back in the eighties’ performed an act where he owned a fresh produce shop. One day he was standing in front of his shop shouting for people to come and purchase his fresh vegetables. One passer-by stops and tells him “But there’s nothing on display! Your shelves are empty”, and Wassim answers him “I’m selling tomorrow’s vegetables!”

Why wait for a newspaper or TV news when I can have it as it happens?! If the conventional media needs to know something, ask me!

24 hours news channels have also contributed to making print and news casts obsolete. What’s left for those? Analysis, that’s what’s left. But that’s a different story.

Now, don’t get over excited. Not every new website is a news website! If a newspaper starts its own digital delivery, that does not make it an immediate success. How many new websites do you read everyday, all the time? Really.

Most of us are stuck with one or two sites that we visit all the time to quench our thirst for news. ANd all we do is read the news. Who cares for useless gimmicks and hoopla? Yes, being able to share, print or email and article is great, but that does not make you a pioneer! And it does not either give you the right to invade my screen with annoying animations, buttons, links and stupid stuff I will never use.

THE INSIGHTS
Now, let’s look at what makes us read news at the first place. I think that there are 3 important drivers:

1- Immediacy
News as it happens. I have many times tweeted and read tweets about news way before it was published on leading news sites. You see, we the tweeters, are not after scoops. We do not sort material according to priority to yield more readership. For us, immediacy is the word. We are attracted to news when it happens. The digital age is about living the event, not reading about it later.

2- Relevance
We want to read news that are relevant to us, in any way. And relevance is also child of immediacy, because when it gets old, it might simply become irrelevant. Relevance is subjective, and the winners are those who manage to cater for all tastes. The meaning of “news” varies drastically from one individual to the other. Take me for instance, local news are the least of my worries, which means I skim through the titles. For others, they are the heart of the matter.

3- Discovery
We do not know everything. We never will. But that does not mean that unknown news are not relevant. Discovery happens on well structured digital delivery systems. They guide you through to find out about matters you ignored.

So as you see, immediacy generates relevance, and relevance generates discovery.
What makes what?
It is undeniable that a perfect symbiosis has started to exist between the event and the news. We hear a lot about news that magnify events to the extent of blowing it out of proportions. OJ Simpson was a great example. And mind you, the digital age had not really dawned by then.

Celebrities scandals have become prime news now, sometimes over-shadowing political apocalypse. Why is that? The digital age caters to the widest target audience possible. In doing so, it reaches ages otherwise inaccessible via traditional media unless heavy investments are made. The younger generation has at reach a plethora of digital access points that constantly deliver news of celebrities and the fringe. Previously, traditional media had all these news packed in five minutes at the end of their newscast.

The result, a total blurring of the border between “serious” and fringe news. This blurring has created that ultimate symbiosis, the result of which was a similar blurring of news delivery and audience. Portals like The Huffington Post, AllTop, even CNN epitomize such a trend.

Events do not always make the news. Today, it is about the potential news portals see in specific stories that “internationalize” such stories, blowing them out of proportions, or even sometimes triggering a chain of events that change political landscapes.

Tunisia, Egypt, Lybia, Syria, Iraq; are perfect examples. In such totalitarian regimes, “things” used to happen decades ago… Very bad things… And all we used to hear were bits and pieces of “rumors” that used to reach us days, weeks or even months later, and then quickly fade away in the archive of history, without even having proved they ever occurred.

Rallying the masses is what the digital age managed to do. What’s more, it can now do it in a blink. Like a plague, text messages, tweets and Facebook messaging act as catalysts, bringing millions locally to act, and more millions globally to react. YouTube triggers a chain of reaction that gets engraved in our minds, souls and the Internet archives forever.

Here’s the perfect example: How many emails with attachments do you get with warnings about a poisonous food additive, or “immediate” world occurrences, only to find out that they actually date to years back. The sender saw it on the Internet and simply thought it was happening now, without bothering checking the date of the news?

No one ever cared about Sudan or the Ivory Coast! Millions were, and still are, dying from hunger in Africa, and no one ever moved a finger. Today, thanks to the Internet news delivery, rallies are organized at the four corners of the Earth in support of these “causes”. People around the world demand the departure of dictators they never heard of! Or have they? Today it’s about what the digital news tell and show us. Conspiracy theories about media manipulation by super (and not so super) powers is starting to make sense, to me at least.

THE SECRET FORMULA
You want to topple a ruling monster? Here’s the formula: Start a Facebook group, a Twitter account and a YouTube channel. If you can afford it, start a news portal. Start spreading the news by registering hundreds of fake accounts who end up “commenting” and voicing their opinions in support to “your” cause, then sit and watch the snowball effect. Depending on your means, reach, and magnitude of the cause, you can achieve your goals in a few weeks. You can even create your own heroes as a bonus!

SO…
Bottom line, and the one million dollar question (That’s 710,000 Euros and 2,802,600 Polish zlotys), is it good or bad?

Don’t ask me!

Ask the idiots who believe websites that claim the end of the world was supposed to occur on May 21, or constantly visit websites that claim to turn you from Gargantua to Brad Pitt in four days.

Or ask the politicians who hire web geeks, writers and journalists to help them build a social media universe in compensation to their lack of meaningful social life.

Or, you could ask those who justly use the Internet to spread the news of oppression, voice the words of the muted minorities, educate, entice to explore, encourage knowledge and turn the global mess into a true global village, one where we don’t only meet to gossip, but one where we gather in empathy and support, and share knowledge instead of rumors.

The true purpose of news in the digital age is this: When your fellow human is in trouble, wherever he or she might be, you are in trouble too. If not today, then soon, pretty soon.

© 2011 Ibrahim Lahoud

Creative Commons License
News in the Digital Age by Ibrahim N. Lahoud is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
Based on a work at ilahoud.wordpress.com.

10
May
11

SIT DOWN BILL. STAND UP STEVE!


Apple is crowned Number one on the BrandZ top 100 of 2011.

Am I jubilant, well daaah! Am I bias? Hell yeah!

Let me straighten things up, I’m brand-bias. We live in a cheesy world by definition.

We live in a world were source codes are more highly regarded than sweet icons.

We live in a world where command prompts are more intellectual than a “genie-effect”.

We live in a world where Mac wannabes think that getting there is about aluminum-colored covers, lit-up logos on the lid, or epilepsy-inducing transparency and shadow effects.

Well people, it’s what goes under that lid. The world woke up only to find out that Apple did NOT do it again. It simply kept doing it. They invented the personal computer, they launched the first digital camera, the established the USB, FireWire, music and movies. They did not make phones, they made iPhones, they did not make tablet-PCs, they made iPads.

They did not make computers, they made history.

And you wonder why I am bias?!

You want to be a programming geek? Sure, why not? But at least be it on a personal computer that gives you a choice. Besides, I mean really, why do you want to be a programming geek at the first place?

I love my Mac… And my Mac loves me.

No, I am not blinded. Relationships that last for 24 years cannot be blind. And no, I am not a designer (for heavens’ sake!) Microsoft created Excel and Word for the Mac first! Did you know that? When PCs were still struggling with Lotus 123 and WordPerfect, Microsoft, yes Bill himself saw the potential in Macs.

If Apple opened its architecture, Bill would be doing windows now… literarily!!

And why didn’t they? You might ask. Well because its windows were clean! Sorry I had to crack the joke. No, seriously, Apple did not open its architecture to avoid inaugurating an Insults hall of fame!

Those of you who have to struggle with PCs’ and hardware and software incompatibilities, fans syncs, sound cards, video cards, know what I’m talking about.

Oh! Oh! And the best: Plug and Play!!

Plug, and then play at trying to make them work together!! What the hell?! When was the last time you plugged a piece of hardware without being intimidated by pop-up screens, drivers installation crap, and the best, confirmation of “your hardware is ready to use” without anything showing on your desktop?! Plug and play my a**!

Macs are beautiful machines! Raymond Loewy said “beauty sells”. And boy! Was he right!

When Steve Jobs returned to Apple, he created the iMac… in 6 flavors! Not hardware flavors, but sweet tasty colorful and fruity flavors. In less than a couple of months, the iMac was in the Guinness book of World Records. Every year, Apple tops the industrial design awards. Apple is about beauty because we want to live and work in a beautiful world. YES, you can build a beautiful computer, load it with an amazing system and Graphical User Interface, and still make it work miracles.

Although the signature is not used anymore, Macs are still and will always be “The computer for the rest of us”!

Ok debunkers, give it to me! Speed? Price? Flexibility? What? Name it!

Not anymore, Steve knew how to pack all of those benefits in one amazingly looking piece of art.

That’s why Apple is a top brand. That’s why Microsoft is down to Number 5 and Apple up to Number 1 in the top 100 brands. Numbers and the people have spoken.

Apple never talked Megabytes and resolution. Apple talked about more time to create and less time to execute. Apple never talks about RAM and ports. It talks about enjoying the experience. Apple never talked about plug and play… It simply applied it… for real.

Why? Because you never brag about a car having tires! You never brag about a house having a door! Plug and play IS what computers are all about… At least in the 21st century. It’s like still claiming today that you have a color TV!!

Apple is a top brand not because people mention it most, or buy it most. It is a top brand because people love it most.

This was published on Mashable: “Not only did Apple surpass Microsoft in market capitalization to become the second most valuable U.S. company in 2010, it also superseded Google to become the most valuable consumer-facing brand in the world, according to a study published by global research agency Millward Brown.” Its brand value jumped up by 84%. That must be worth something! It’s simple. The ratio of Mac users who shift to PCs versus PC users to swing to Mac is infinitesimal.

For those of you using PCs and are happy doing so, good for you. For those using a Mac, I say, please, be nice and stop picking at PC users 😉

P.S. No hard feelings. I told you I’m bias. 🙂

© 2011 Ibrahim Lahoud

 

 
Creative Commons License
Sit down Bill. Stand up Steve by Ibrahim N. Lahoud is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
Based on a work at ilahoud.wordpress.com.

22
Dec
10

Do you believe Social Media can drive business in the Arab World?


20
Dec
10

Social Media; “Share and Dare” versus “Trial and Error”


What’s so social about digital media?

How did those two words come together?

Why has suddenly the Internet become the most (virtual) convivial tool?

And how did it manage to turn conviviality into a business asset?

Simple. Our crave to make contact knows no boundaries. What’s more, we are more inclined to establish contact with remote nodes rather than close ones. Remember the days when you used to write letters to your cousins in Brazil? Before they left motherland, you used to see each other on holidays only. Once they were miles away, you found yourself communicating with them more than ever, getting to know them even more than when they were closer.

This is what made Facebook so successful; not that it was its original intention.

Businesses discovered an amazing insight: Don’t get your brand closer to customers; get customers craving for your brand. The farther you keep your brand in the virtual realm, the closer you get your market to it. Paradoxical fact. No wonder Starbucks is the most Social Media savvy brand.

But don’t get me wrong! I am not encouraging brands to push away from their markets.

Here’s another metaphor: Live with someone for a year under the same roof for every single day without ever going out, and you’ll end up having nothing to talk about. Come to think about it, you’ll end up killing each other! Move away from each other for periods of time, and you’ll come back with loads of topics to chat about. The secret of solid relationships is measured by the power of people to manage contact.

The power of social media resides in its ability to offer and exchange information in an interactive and dynamic way. It is there when you need or want it only.

Social media is the “anti-advertising” communication.

Social Media does not advertise, it communicates. It does not claim, it states. It does not patronize, it educates.

We, the Digital People, hate advertising, claims and patronizing. We love communication, clear statements and education.

Social Media is the “Make-A-Friend” DIY kit of brands.

Why?

Because we choose what to browse, read and interact with. We define our digital universe, acquire the tools we feel are right for us, and most of all, we do so by learning, watching what others do and using smart synthesis. It is not anymore trial and error, but rather sharing and daring.

Think about it, trial and error are the two most scary words in business, let alone personal. Trial induces delving into unknown grounds, so unknown that it never spells “trial and success” but “trial and error”. I mean really, how encouraging and engaging is it?

Sharing puts you at par with others. So if you’re a brand you’re not condescending. You’re not “telling”, you’re simply sharing, making the receiver part of the process, a partner, a peer. Daring is exactly what you expect as a reaction. Daring is nothing like trial. Where trial sound like a jump in a dark abyss, daring is more about courage, more about knowing “where” or “what” to try. This is what make “Facebookers” and “tweeps” exchange massive amounts of information.

Look at your Facebook friends. Most of them are shy in real life, yet share so much information on their profiles. Observe your fellow tweeps and see how you can easily profile them just by monitoring their tweets.

Social Media takes advantage of a very well-known syndrome; the virtual relationship, where establishing and sustaining a contact is by far easier than in real life. This is because we feel more secure and more in control of the information we receive and interact with. The more comfortable we are, the more we dare, and the more we dare, the more we share. Simple equation.

Brands in the 21st century are striving to make friends rather than customers, advocates rather than buyers. Before, brands used media only, pushing information down our throats and expecting us to believe and purchase. It did not work, at least not as much as they expected it would. The missing ingredient to make friends and advocates was to get social.

The advent of the digital age, and the way it helped people build their comfort zones, made it ideal for brands to bring together their two ultimate dream-tools: Media to communicate and Social to interact.

Social Media, Interactive communication!

 

©2010 Ibrahim Lahoud

21
Sep
10

Lebanon, the Internet and literacy


The slow bandwidth, lack of broadband, free wi-fi spots and a proper and affordable pricing structure are dramatically contributing to the drop of literacy in Lebanon.

Yes, even Facebook and illegal torrents are tools of education. Not that I encourage illegal activities… but really, where else will you learn “things” in Lebanon? Certainly not the media! Surely not expensive books! And absolutely not from your entourage.

Before the advent of Internet, TV used to teach us a lot. English was perfected by many through TV series and movies. Documentaries were our hungry minds window to the world. Hell! Even news were good to watch back then. Books were cheap, magazines were about fashion instead of sick outfits, about innovations instead of cheesy gadgets, and about world human happenings instead of modern days copycats.

And one day, we woke up and all was gone. TVs started beaming brain-damaging endless soap operas, sci-fi movies where the only fiction is the director. And whenever there’s a worthy channel, you have to pay loads of cash to see it or… hack it.

Books became for the wealthy (as if they needed education to buy an outrageously huge and hideous pinky gold ring), and if you manage to land on an affordable one, it’s always about Lebanese politics, and the only way to rationalize this one is through a sarcastic joke about the origins of the word politics: ‘Poly’ meaning many and ‘ticks’ meaning blood-sucking parasites. Magazines? Don’t even ask! They contain more Botox than Zaza Gabor’s lips and more slimy-dripping silicone than Silicone Valley, and if they don’t, well… they’re simply “flat”!

So, today we have the Internet! Some will argue that the internet contains the same crap mentioned above. Well yes, true, but the good stuff is a URL away. Your call!

When one school somewhere in Lebanon gets connected and furnishes its classes with laptops instead of books, it’s national news, a scoop. Well, on one side it’s a relief from the usual “I shot the sheriff but did not shoot the deputy” headlines, but on the other… Come on! We’re now bragging about how late we were??!

Before connecting schools and finding enough bandwidth to make it run, how about we start with getting homes connected? It’s sickening to find ministers and politicians throwing the blame at each other in a weird ping-pong, over who’s responsible! Hello! Read the blogs, follow Twitter, look at Facebook. WE DON’T CARE WHO’S TO BLAME! Denial is far from being just a river in Egypt you know… Don’t know who said that, but I’ll marry her if it’s a “she”!

Bandwidth is available, the infrastructure is available, everything is ready but it takes a little bit of, Ahem!… brain… and… balls! Here I said it. Another sarcastic joke is due: God gave men enough blood to make only one of two function at the same time… so that’s probably why, broadband will take some time….

Most of what I know today, most of the information I had and that developed into knowledge was acquired from the Internet. My children (and yours) acquired their knowledge from the internet. And all that was achieved with the slowest of connections you could have anywhere in the world!

If we were to count on parents, society, schools and the whole educational system over here to provide knowledge to our children, they’ll end up talking politics, weather, coffee cups fortune-telling and some weird and totally misleading history material.

We want people to know about Facebook, but also about Zuckerberg, Apple, but also Steve Jobs, Obama, but also Kevorkian. We want them to know about big movies, but also about YouTube amateurs. We want them to know about Twitter but also Foursquare. We want people to harness the power of the internet to the maximum. We want them to bleed it dry. It is amazing that in some North European countries, Internet access became a citizen’s right, just like electricity and water, while here, it is still a luxury… like electricity and water!!!

The rich get richer, and the poor poorer… This needs no elaboration in Lebanon, but the danger that lurks inside does. The rich is motivated by money, while the poor is motivated by knowledge. Underprivileged people “know” that to make money, they need knowledge, not education; knowledge. They can’t afford education, because the country leaders simply won’t avail it, but knowledge should be accessible to everyone. It costs less to avail bandwidth than to build schools, and over here… It even educates better!

Ok, it’s true,  I love being sarcastic. I love criticizing the leaders, not “our”, “the”; they’re surely not my leaders, and you know why? I refuse to be led by someone who’s knowledge-meter is below freezing! I always wondered what do they do with their Internet at home besides playing online poker or watch… Ahem! (again) indecent and decadent material? Oh come on! Don’t tell me politicians read the news on the Internet! They made the news and trust me, even they don’t want to read their own crap.

So, do you want to create a nation? Do you want to build a country with its feet on the ground but a soul in the stars? Do you want to see yourselves and your children become beacons of knowledge? Ask your government to open up the bandwidth pipe and lower the Internet prices. Ask your politicians to avail free wi-fi spots all over the urban areas. Tell them that politics don’t make countries… Countries make politics

Only then will you “really” discover the difference between orange, yellow, green and blue. You’ll find out they are just colors… Nothing more… Nothing less.

04
Sep
10

Facebook, the good, the bad and the ugly profile pic!


I’ve had my Facebook page for a while now. The original purpose was genuine. Hooking up with family abroad, my students and long-lost friends was like the Holy Grail to me. But what you are not aware of is that when you drink too much from that cup things turn pretty bad.

I was pondering upon a very serious thought lately. I never had so many friends or family. How come I’m hitting records on Facebook? And mind you, I am humbled and dwarfed compared to others who end up with thousands of friends. Which pushes me to reflect on the true meaning of friendship…

After a while, I noticed that Facebook actually fulfills one paramount role, and one only: Giving you that ego boost which real friends never managed to provide. Facebook finally is our way to “ask” for attention where none is given. Our eternal quest to make valuable or meaningful statements is undermined by the number of those people willing to listen to us. Facebook is the perfect platform to accumulate “friends”, shout those statements and “make” them listen.

Honestly, why would anyone care if you’re having Cajun chicken for lunch or your “eyes are smiling but heart is crying”, or “if you have a sister and love her, post this on your profile”? And the worst of all is how we found in Facebook the ultimate podium to express how politically stupid we are by displaying our sheepish attitude.

But then again, people love it, use it and… abuse it. Millions of users, including yours truly, have turned Facebook into the largest cyber-city ever created. That’s good, until it turns ugly.

I recently witnessed a “wall” row over some stupid political topic between two “friends”. The ping-pong went on for days. Suddenly, email, telephone, face to face and decency were lost on the “wall”!

One more thing I noticed is how people want to become your friend for one reason, spying! Thank God you can put them on that limited profile thing. But why do you have to do that? Why can’t you simply ignore their friend request? I mean, in real life you would simply ignore them and make them fade away. Why can’t we do the same on Facebook?

The psychology of Facebook is an amazing web of intricacies that has been weaved by our insecurities, crave for fame and lack of self-confidence. What’s worse is the fact that even organizations and businesses are suffering from those symptoms. If a business can’t get its Facebook page right…..

And what’s with the groups thing? It started in the form of small and cute “alumni” and ended up having a group for every saint, politician, geek, nerd, jerk and sick topic you could ever imagine. You join the group because you’re too shy to say no, and that’s it! You never visit or interact. It’s like being a junk collector. Your profile ends looking more like a junkyard.

Oh, and applications and games! Amazing, if your monitor your friends, you’ll find out that most of them play games during work hours! Go ahead, check it! Productivity at its best.

I can tell now that Facebook has lost its raison-d’être. And for me, this is the first sign of decline. How interesting can it keep getting? Every hype reaches a ceiling ultimately. If I were to foretell the future, that’s what I would see:

  1. Facebook will migrate to become a big tunnel, a corridor, through which people come and people go. This will defeat the purpose of long-term online friendships. Your friends will get bored and sign-off, eventually you will too. If you don’t, you will start seeing your wall slowly degenerate into an empty space populated by random boring posts.
  2. You and your friends would have depleted all your stock of tricks, jokes, gimmicks, and bragging. You will all lose interest and Facebook will become a cemetery of wishes.
  3. more older adults, businesses and senior citizens will be the dominant users. In the U.S. currently users above 25 years old, all the way to 65 and above constitute 65% of all users. Those between 35 and 44 are 17%, and those between 45 and 54 are 12.5%.

  1. Other formats of social networking are taking over the worldwide web by storm. Twitter is becoming a favorite of interaction which is more intellectually rewarding, less cluttered, and definitely less full of junk. The concept of “following” people is by itself a different concept than accumulating friends. You actually choose who you follow based on their positive input on your intellect and positive impact on your life.
  2. You will be less interested in when your friend burps and more interested in where they are now or what they are doing instantly. Augmented reality, geotagging, locational networking such as Foursquare will become dominant because they provide instant reward and help hook you up with your friends based on both your behavior pattern.
  3. Facebook still lacks the bridge between what you’re doing right now and what you publish. Most of the time, you either publish what you intend to do or what you have already done. This time-gap will be felt as a handicap compared to other tools that publish your immediate happenings.
  4. Your iPhone (or any other smart phone) are becoming sophisticated gaming devices with in-app purchases and online scoring, etc. Facebook apps and games will slowly become redundant. Their aim to mainly generate income through advertising will be the cause of their demise. Advertisers are becoming more interested in pushing ads based on where you are and what you are doing now, and how you do it. Advertising through mobile apps eventually will be more effective.
  5. With higher bandwidth and better online-desktop integration, photo, video and music sharing, some of the core tools of Facebook will migrate to those websites that are more dedicated and can provide more effective management means (Flickr, YouTube, Ping, etc.)
  6. If you notice, Facebook is becoming more and more a business tool. I, for example publish to Facebook most of my business tweets. Many of my friends have suddenly started doing the same. This leads to many if your friends deciding to open Twitter accounts and start following you and vice versa.

Facebook will surely be here for a while. Undeniably, it has reshuffled all our pre-conceptions of social networking and has paved the way for the new era of connecting people online. The way it has impacted our cyber-lives will be the foundation for all new ways and means to interact. It took the internet years to reach 500 million users; it took Facebook just 2!

For now, please, for the sake of the collective sanity, refrain from publishing when you undergo colonoscopies, have fever or simply have been dumped by your lover. If you insist on publishing pics of you that hardly look like you, remember that most of your so-called “friends” are actually mere acquaintances.

Last but not least, recruiters are using more and more Facebook to analyze the psychology and social behavior of their potential new staff. So, if you badly need that job, don’t put on your status what you think of your current job or what how drunk you were the night before…

©2010 – Ibrahim Lahoud




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Creative Commons License
Reason To Believe by Ibrahim N. Lahoud is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
Based on a work at ilahoud.wordpress.com.
Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available at htt://ilahoud.wordpress.com.

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