Posts tagged social media

theatlantic:

Is Facebook Making Us Lonely?

Yvette Vickers, a former Playboy playmate and B-movie star, best known for her role in Attack of the 50 Foot Woman, would have been 83 last August, but nobody knows exactly how old she was when she died. According to the Los Angeles coroner’s report, she lay dead for the better part of a year before a neighbor and fellow actress, a woman named Susan Savage, noticed cobwebs and yellowing letters in her mailbox, reached through a broken window to unlock the door, and pushed her way through the piles of junk mail and mounds of clothing that barricaded the house. Upstairs, she found Vickers’s body, mummified, near a heater that was still running. Her computer was on too, its glow permeating the empty space.
The Los Angeles Times posted a story headlined “Mummified Body of Former Playboy Playmate Yvette Vickers Found in Her Benedict Canyon Home,” which quickly went viral. Within two weeks, by Technorati’s count, Vickers’s lonesome death was already the subject of 16,057 Facebook posts and 881 tweets. She had long been a horror-movie icon, a symbol of Hollywood’s capacity to exploit our most basic fears in the silliest ways; now she was an icon of a new and different kind of horror: our growing fear of loneliness. Certainly she received much more attention in death than she did in the final years of her life. With no children, no religious group, and no immediate social circle of any kind, she had begun, as an elderly woman, to look elsewhere for companionship. Savage later told Los Angeles magazine that she had searched Vickers’s phone bills for clues about the life that led to such an end. In the months before her grotesque death, Vickers had made calls not to friends or family but to distant fans who had found her through fan conventions and Internet sites.
Vickers’s web of connections had grown broader but shallower, as has happened for many of us. We are living in an isolation that would have been unimaginable to our ancestors, and yet we have never been more accessible. Over the past three decades, technology has delivered to us a world in which we need not be out of contact for a fraction of a moment. In 2010, at a cost of $300 million, 800 miles of fiber-optic cable was laid between the Chicago Mercantile Exchange and the New York Stock Exchange to shave three milliseconds off trading times. Yet within this world of instant and absolute communication, unbounded by limits of time or space, we suffer from unprecedented alienation. We have never been more detached from one another, or lonelier. In a world consumed by ever more novel modes of socializing, we have less and less actual society. We live in an accelerating contradiction: the more connected we become, the lonelier we are. We were promised a global village; instead we inhabit the drab cul-de-sacs and endless freeways of a vast suburb of information.
Read more. [Image: Phillip Toledano]

theatlantic:

Is Facebook Making Us Lonely?

Yvette Vickers, a former Playboy playmate and B-movie star, best known for her role in Attack of the 50 Foot Woman, would have been 83 last August, but nobody knows exactly how old she was when she died. According to the Los Angeles coroner’s report, she lay dead for the better part of a year before a neighbor and fellow actress, a woman named Susan Savage, noticed cobwebs and yellowing letters in her mailbox, reached through a broken window to unlock the door, and pushed her way through the piles of junk mail and mounds of clothing that barricaded the house. Upstairs, she found Vickers’s body, mummified, near a heater that was still running. Her computer was on too, its glow permeating the empty space.

The Los Angeles Times posted a story headlined “Mummified Body of Former Playboy Playmate Yvette Vickers Found in Her Benedict Canyon Home,” which quickly went viral. Within two weeks, by Technorati’s count, Vickers’s lonesome death was already the subject of 16,057 Facebook posts and 881 tweets. She had long been a horror-movie icon, a symbol of Hollywood’s capacity to exploit our most basic fears in the silliest ways; now she was an icon of a new and different kind of horror: our growing fear of loneliness. Certainly she received much more attention in death than she did in the final years of her life. With no children, no religious group, and no immediate social circle of any kind, she had begun, as an elderly woman, to look elsewhere for companionship. Savage later told Los Angeles magazine that she had searched Vickers’s phone bills for clues about the life that led to such an end. In the months before her grotesque death, Vickers had made calls not to friends or family but to distant fans who had found her through fan conventions and Internet sites.

Vickers’s web of connections had grown broader but shallower, as has happened for many of us. We are living in an isolation that would have been unimaginable to our ancestors, and yet we have never been more accessible. Over the past three decades, technology has delivered to us a world in which we need not be out of contact for a fraction of a moment. In 2010, at a cost of $300 million, 800 miles of fiber-optic cable was laid between the Chicago Mercantile Exchange and the New York Stock Exchange to shave three milliseconds off trading times. Yet within this world of instant and absolute communication, unbounded by limits of time or space, we suffer from unprecedented alienation. We have never been more detached from one another, or lonelier. In a world consumed by ever more novel modes of socializing, we have less and less actual society. We live in an accelerating contradiction: the more connected we become, the lonelier we are. We were promised a global village; instead we inhabit the drab cul-de-sacs and endless freeways of a vast suburb of information.

Read more. [Image: Phillip Toledano]

Chorus puts tweets to music

In an effort to promote the city of Calgary, Tourism Calgary asked people on Twitter to suggest ways of staying warm this winter, then Calgary Philharmonic Chorus’s master set 20 of the tweeted replies to music.

The result? Tweets (including “gravy action on my cheese,” a.k.a. poutine) sung to the tune of Carl Orff’s dramatic “O Fortuna” from Carmina Burana.

(If you aren’t able to play the “Singing Tweets” embedded video, click here to view it.)

Is It Crazy For Parents To Choose A Unique Baby Name Just For The Twitter Handle?

utnereader:

When it comes to Twitter handles, @JohnSmith and @JaneSmith are obviously taken. So if you’re a brand new parent-to-be and you’re stuck with the common surname “Smith”, you’ve got to get pretty creative with your baby’s first name if you want him or her to grow up with a unique social footprint. But is that really something you should be thinking about between Lamaze classes? (via AllTwitter)

Customers, restaurants, and tweets

So this Twitter-fueled situation happened on Sunday night in Houston: 

Now it’s heartening to read about a different restaurant-related incident that took place, again thanks to Twitter, last night in the New York City area: 

How To Use Google Plus

For all current and future Google+ folks (which, I presume, will be many of us): This is a good how-to piece from ReadWriteWeb. 

Twitter is All About the Links

Via steverubel:

Fortune recaps statements from Twitter on engagement. And there’s no surprise here….

“80% of Twitter engagement consists of people clicking on a tweet, while the remaining 20% is a Retweet or a Tweet.”

This is why brands on Twitter need to view themselves as curators. Tweet 75% of the time with links that are relevant to your zone and 25% about yourself. There’s too much competition for people’s time these days. It’s not about you.

Via the20newyork:

Bronx Zoo Cobra Turns Up—On Twitter.  On Friday afternoon, zookeepers at the Bronx Zoo’s reptile house noticed a poisonous Egyptian cobra was missing.  By Monday the “snake” (or, rather, a clever person with a bit of time on their hands) joined Twitter to document their adventures in the big city.  Also signing up for the site?  The Bronx Zoo keeper, who is hot on the cobra’s tail trail.  Follow both funny accounts as they play a modern game of cat and mouse in the big city.  It’s sure to be a good laugh, at least until the snake does something dangerous in real life.
-KH
[BronxZoosCobra, BronxZookeeper, NBCNewYork]     

Awesome.

Via the20newyork:

Bronx Zoo Cobra Turns Up—On Twitter.  On Friday afternoon, zookeepers at the Bronx Zoo’s reptile house noticed a poisonous Egyptian cobra was missing.  By Monday the “snake” (or, rather, a clever person with a bit of time on their hands) joined Twitter to document their adventures in the big city.  Also signing up for the site?  The Bronx Zoo keeper, who is hot on the cobra’s tail trail.  Follow both funny accounts as they play a modern game of cat and mouse in the big city.  It’s sure to be a good laugh, at least until the snake does something dangerous in real life.

-KH

[BronxZoosCobra, BronxZookeeper, NBCNewYork]     

Awesome.

Opera House provides live streaming for mobile phones

Via emergentfutures:

USUALLY when patrons attend a performance at Sydney’s Opera House, they’re politely asked to switch off their mobile phones.

But this Sunday, when music lovers converge on the iconic Sydney venue for the 2011 YouTube Symphony Orchestra concert, audience members will be asked for the first time in the history of the Opera House to turn on their mobile phones and live stream the event worldwide.

Full Story: AustralianIT

The genius behind @MayorEmanuel is Dan Sinker, who has a heart made out of Chicago and balls of punk rock.

Alexis Madrigal reveals the man behind the the notorious, lovable, f-bomb spewing @MayorEmanuel. (via theatlantic)

A great story — and great coverage of it.

Today in “disaster recovery” news: American Red Cross admits mistake — human error in posting a “rogue tweet” from the @RedCross corporate account instead of posting it from someone’s personal Twitter account. Well done. Details here, on the Red Cross blog. [@KennethCole (story here) and others: take note!]

Today in “disaster recovery” news: American Red Cross admits mistake — human error in posting a “rogue tweet” from the @RedCross corporate account instead of posting it from someone’s personal Twitter account. Well done. Details here, on the Red Cross blog. [@KennethCole (story here) and others: take note!]