Monday, January 31, 2011

Where We Are Going, We Don't Need Roads

One of the best things regarding social media is how at times it can become a fragile time capsule of what was.  This is even more prevalent when you were once active on one site (Myspace) and stop using this media outlet only to revisit it years later.  Though you may have abandoned the network, the network did not abandon you and kept everything the same as when you left it.

Revisiting my Myspace profile was probably on some levels the same as when archaeologists explored the lost city of Pompeii decades later to see everything preserved as if nothing had changed when the reality was that everything had changed.  That is what Myspace overall has become to not only myself, but others, a forgotten city.

I spent several minutes re-reading what blogs I had posted throughout the span of 2-3 years (yes, I occasionally blogged before it became a classroom requirement) and just reflecting on the events of life that I covered during those years was both insightful and showed how much can change in life within 5-6 years (it had been around 2 1/2 years since the last time I even logged in to Myspace).  Its funny, the main topic that I was continuously discussing during my blogs was life after graduating from EKU and whether I would continue my studies at EKU, NKU, Ole Miss, or Florida State (though I really have no recollection on why I even considered FSU) while debating on pursuing a law career (which I'm glad I didn't, the last thing the world needs is another lawyer).  I found humor in those postings as life has a funny way of laying out a completely different path for you and while I was re-reading my past entries, I was doing so from my apartment in Lafayette, Indiana where I now attend Purdue in search of a Ph.D.

I finally decided enough time had been spent on my past and deleted Myspace account (which since they redid the site has become easier then previous attempts).  In doing so it left me to wonder this, will Facebook one day fall the way of Pompeii and Myspace and itself become a "forgotten city" where people will leave a piece of themselves and their past only to stumble upon later in life? I personally do not believe this to be the case as Facebook had/has a better business layout then Myspace, but I'm sure other social media networks will follow the same way as users are constantly shifting to the "NEXT BIG THING."

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Sweet Home!!!!

This fine evening, while I'm once again questioning the merits of whether Indiana actually has grass as it continues to snow (my belief is that Indiana's grass is like Sasquatch, I've heard about it, but yet to see it with my own eyes), I'm am counting down the hours (under 48) before I'm back home for a few days in the Bluegrass State, ala, my Old KY Home.  During the past month of adjusting from life as a native KY resident to that of being like an alien in a foreign world and wondering where even the smallest things are (note to fellow Kentuckians, Kroger's is called Pay Less up here) I have come to realize a few of the small pleasures that I enjoyed back in KY that I can no longer enjoy as an everyday Indiananan Boilermaker.

This is probably one of the biggest things I am looking forward to as soon as the engine stops when I enter Lexington Saturday evening.  As of this writing I am down to 1 Ale-8 and 3 Diet Ale-8's.  I have had to ration these off like my life depended on it along with sanctioning the amount of
KY highballs/speedballs that  I am able to make.  If they ever do make a "Hoarders: Pop Edition" there is a good chance I may appear on this episode with an apt full of cans/bottles/fountain boxes as I continue to live in Indiana and be separated from my one true love.

Got Bourbon?  Hope you do, because Indiana's selection if far inferior to that of KY.  In Indiana's defense 95% of all the world's Bourbon is produced in KY.  Because of this statistic, it makes it easier to find some of the finer small batch Bourbons in the KY area.  Though at the time I have no means to complain as I have 8 varying bottles of this wonderful elixir staring back at me as I write this blog, (including one bottle of  White Dog from Buffalo Trace) it could however become a problem as my time in Indiana will last longer then my current supply of Bourbon.  

The Legendary Cloud Splitter

Above is a picture from my own slice of heaven, Cloud Splitter.  It is an area that is off the topographic map of the Eden that is the Red River Gorge, only accessible through a rope or steep climb up a barely accessible side of hill.  This view is just one of the many views that the Gorge has to offer.  Unfortunately, the Gorge is in KY and not here.  Even in the Winter time, I enjoyed going hiking 
to see all the arches and sights, and more importantly to get away from civilization and collect my thoughts.  As far as I know Indiana has nothing that can be comparable or as close to my current location as what the Gorge provided back home.  Though during this time of going back home I still won't be able to give the Gorge its due, I plan on taking a week off in the Spring and camping, no laptop, no phone, no lights, no motorcars, not a single luxury, and the minnow would be lost...wait I mean I'm going to enjoy the wilderness and may even do a Survivorman experience again.

Lexington, KY, ahhh.....what can I say. The horsefarms, Keeneland, Rupp, Tolly Ho, Pazzo's, Centrepointe, Austin City, KY Ale, the list of what I love about Lexington could go on forever.  It's a big city that still has a small city feel to it.  I never thought I will be as happy to see the "Big Blue Building" as I will on Saturday night. 

Lastly, I am excited to get back to KY to see my friends.  Even though it's only been a month and in the scheme of things that's a small amount of time, its still long enough to make you miss the little things in life and those that you "jell" with the most.  In my case, it doesn't matter if it's the guys (and occasionally some girls) that flung me around at the  dojo, my friends I made from EKU, or the guys who are my best friends from back home, I miss them all.

The sad part of all this is a weekend in general goes by so fast, a weekend back home will go by that much faster.  Regardless, I will def enjoy this weekend like it was my last, though my time so far in Indiana hasn't been bad,  my friend Puddin Howell says it best by singing, "But Kentucky is my home!" 

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Don't Be A Habitual Line Stepper

One of the cool things about social media outlets such as Twitter and Facebook is the fact you can keep up with all your favorite celebrities and athletes among other notable famous people (if your into that kind of stuff).  It's one thing when you just follow your favorite person on Twitter or even get an accepted Friend Request on Facebook.  However, there are certain rules of etiquette of what you don't do to these people.  Let's face it there is a fine line between being "friends" and crossing the line into stalker or some other amount of ridiculous territory or as I call it, being a line stepper.

On Twitter it seems that since it is so easy to follow someone (unless they are paranoid of becoming too popular like me and only allow people to follow them through approval) that the interactions between fan and celebrity are happening on daily basis due to retweets, mentions, etc.  Sometimes this can be cool such as UFC President Dana White who is famous for interacting with fans, giving away tickets, and tweeting during fights.  Other times, people can cross into line stepping territory and seemingly blast athletes and celebrities esp. if its over something as stupid as not seeing a picture that Kim Kardashian posts on her account.

One of the main problems with Facebook and athletes has been in regards to college recruits or athletes.  Mention the name Mark Hamilton anywhere within the vicinity of Central KY and you hear a lot of groans along with some few curse words. Why? (in case you didn't click on the link) because Mark crossed the line in a major way and ended up as a major blemish in UK fan/player relations.  Another way fans are reaching out are by actually recruiting high school athletes through being accepted on their profile or even sending messages, to come to their favorite college.  The sad part is the ones doing this aren't even around the same age or even college kids, but grown adults in their 40's and 50's who have taken up the cause.

I'm not one to name drop, but I count Forrest Griffin, Ryan Bader, Erin Calipari as my friends on Facebook. I've talked to all 3 of them, the first two regarding UFC fight chats/comments they had going on at the time and Erin because she commented on this sweet picture of me and my snuggie.
                             Wearing a snuggie will make you raise the roof whether you want to or not

My conclusion for this rant is simple, if you want to become "friends" with your favorite athlete or celebrity on Facebook, or follow them on Twitter, that's one thing.  Do realize that when you have that connection however, that the person on the other side is someone too and having access to write to them directly does not give you the privilege of ripping into them and being an internet tough guy, or as I put it, being a habitual line stepper

Eeny, Meeny, Miny, Moe....

Last week for class (Tech 621, The Social Internet, the main reasoning behind this masterpiece of a blog) I, along with others had to find 20 social media sites that I was previously unaware of.  I did learn several things from this research project, such as if you can think of it, there is probably a social media site for that interest.  Two things I did find out specifically were as followed:

1. There is a dating site for men who have/ladies who love guys with mustaches  I can not begin to define the awesomeness of this.  If me and my fiance, Amanda, ever do come to an end then the first thing I will do is grow a Fumanchu and join this site if for no other purposes then to garner a good laugh.
                        A fumanchu gives you mystical powers, and a championship belt...automatically

2. Never, under any circumstance join the website Badoo.  During my research this was depicted as being the "European version of Facebook."  It even allowed me to sign up using my Facebook credentials which I thought was ok and piqued my interest.  However, once entering this site, it was on par of not wearing a costume to a Halloween party, you felt out of place.  Long story short, it's mainly a dating site and now I'm continuously getting updates about how many people in my area want to meet me (its like an older version of to Catch a Predator).  I am still figuring out how to discontinue these emails but at the same time I will admit I've been to busy to give this problem my full attention.

Now, as far as creating an umbrella to put these varying category of sites together, there seems to be a couple of categories you could go for.

For sites like Linkedin, it would be easy to classify sites like these for Professional use.  The main goal is to act grown up and use network connections for your company or to further your career.

Another group for me would be Personal, this could include your sites like Facebook and Eharmony.  These are the sites where you can "express yourself" or at least your online equivalent of yourself and post likes, dislikes, stay in touch with friends, meet new people, etc.

The "Common Thread" umbrella would consist of sites (mainly forums such as Topix, Ebaum's World, Youtube, and even my beloved KSR (Kentucky Sports Radio)) are the sites where you visit to discuss (or attempt to discuss) issues or topics with those that you have mutual interest in.

Lastly would be "Other" though I'm not currently for sure what would compromise this group, give me time and I will try to come up with something I forgot for the other groups.

Now you may be saying, "Hold on Scott, can these overlap" and the question of course is yes, yes they can.  For example on Facebook even though most people are on there for personal use, they can still join groups with others who they do not know to discuss "the common thread." That is one of the advantages/disadvantages of social media's continuous improvement, that it is constantly blurring the line between categories.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Tech 621 Blog Comments

KSR BTI Rants (Posted as Manbearpig)  which led to to this article later KSR Billy G Texas Tech Facebook Post

Halee's blog

Cincinnati cops don't play around (posted as Manbearpig)

Solar Power Growth up 70% (posted under Scott A. Abney)

Making Solar Power Cheaper (posted as Scott A. Abney)

Hydrogen-Powered, Solar-Inspired (posted as Scott)

Halee's blog (Posted as Scott)

The Guardian "Kentucky Coal" (Posted as Sabney318)

Research Area of Interest (posted as Scott Abney)

Power of Twitter (posted as Scott Abney)

Top `10 Twitter TRends (posted as Scott Abney)

All that is wrong with Social Media I learned from Charlie Sheen (posted as Scott Abney)

Who Needs Website When I have Facebook (posted as Scott Abney)

Tom Whitby Blog posted as Scott Abney

Adam's Blog

Brandon Blog

israa blog

Jack's blog

Rachel S. blog

Adam's Blog

Amanda Blog

Brandon Blog

Kenie Blog

Rachel Blog

Vanessa Blog

Bangelmore Mirror

Sunday, January 16, 2011

When Keeping It Real Goes Wrong

Internet Damage Control Gone Wrong

Posted above is a recent article from regarding company and other individuals attempts at doing damage control regarding social media and other various internet outlets.  Unfortunately/fortunately, the company and individuals involved fail miserably.

This article, through its humorous approach shows just how much power one individual can wield over a company through using social media as an outlet.  I'm sure everyone has heard of someone being fired due to posts regarding their facebook/twitter accounts.  Though people will argue that the lines between "Freedom of Speech" and censorship from their corporate life is becoming blurred, that is just a trend that will continue as technology continuously evolves as it has within the past 5-10 years.  If you are going to use a social media outlet then you have to be ready for the repercussions of what may happen in the future when others look upon your online personality.

Just think for a second when was the last time you went a day without looking at your cell phone to see if you have a missed call, text, facebook message, etc.  If your like me, then its only happened once in a blue moon and the main reason it probably happened was because you forgot your phone at your house and had no option but be thrust back into medieval times and use....phones....with...chords or possibly even smoke signals, though I hope for your benefit the latter option is not true.

Anyways, this is the first of what I'm sure will a semester full of rambling thoughts, some incoherent, others maybe bits of wisdom.