Posts tagged Making

Twitter Is Making Direct Messaging More Private And User Friendly by @mattsouthern

Twitter announced on Friday that changes are coming to their direct messages are sent and stored across the network. Twitter’s support account made the announcement via a Tweet that emphasized the upgrade would make deleting DMs more consistent: Over the next few weeks, we’re rolling out an update that makes deleting DMs more consistent across web and mobile. — Twitter Support (@Support) July 18, 2014 This may not sound like a major updates, but it actually solves a huge problem with Twitter’s mobile app. Previously, when users deleted a direct message on the iOS or Android app, the messages would […]

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Google Making Maps App More Competitive With Yelp

Google Maps has updated its app for iPhone and iPad. The new version adds features and content and even makes the app more visually appealing. The new version includes the following improvements: Search results appear with descriptions on the map Easy switching between map and list view of results…

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“Making Conversion Happen” by Benj Arriola: A #SEOSummit Recap by @AkiLiboon

SEJ’s Philippines team was privileged to attend last Saturday’s SEO Summit and meet the speakers. Among those speaking was the vice president for SEO at Internet Marketing Inc., Benj Arriola. He has been in the SEO field since 2004, and is also the man behind Here’s a few key takeaways from his presentation. User Intent and Your SEO Strategy Benj originally talked about his journey from doing Black Hat to White Hat SEO during the event, but he started his session by giving an overview of Search Engine Optimization and its importance. He states: “SEO is making sure that conversion […]

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The EU’s Right To Be Forgotten Is A Mess & How Google’s Making It Worse

“The road to hell is paved with good intentions,” the saying goes. There are plenty of good intentions with the EU’s Right To Be Forgotten mandate, as well as Google’s attempt to meet new obligations under it. Things are still going to hell regardless. Thanks to the new…

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SEO Mistakes You Could Probably be Making – Business 2 Community

SEO Mistakes You Could Probably be Making
Business 2 Community
We have dealt with in the past blogs too about the kind of SEO mistakes that you may be committing. Even if we were to shout ourselves hoarse, you could still be making many follies, even though unintentionally. You need to understand that SEO is …

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How An Early Mistake Shaped Pinterest’s Plans For Making Money

Pinterest has never been in a hurry to convert investor dollars into financial gains—and given that it’s raised close to three-quarters of a billion dollars over the past five years, it hasn’t needed to be. 

But the visual social pinboard is finally getting serious about making money. Last winter, it hired former San Francisco Chronicle president Joanne Bradford, who today serves as head of commercial and content partnerships at Pinterest.

Joanne Bradford, photo courtesy of Pinterest.

Joanne Bradford, photo courtesy of Pinterest.

Now that Bradford’s been at Pinterest for six months, the site’s commercial strategy is becoming clearer. This month, her team unveiled the latest stage of “promoted pins,” which are essentially advertiser-sponsored versions of the image-based bookmarks—known as “pins”—that Pinterest users put up and share on the site.

“The Pinterest mission is to help people discover things,” Bradford told me in a recent interview. “Promoted pins help people discover, and help brands be discovered.”

Second Time’s A Charm

Pinterest’s promoted-pins strategy has been extremely cautious. When the company first announced promoted pins last September, shortly before hiring Bradford, the sponsored pins blended right into the woodwork of the site. A promoted pin for a camping lantern would be almost indistinguishable from the regular rustic images that come up on a search for “hiking.” 

The origin of that incrementalist approach to advertising traces back to an early Pinterest misstep in February 2012. Back then, the site was so small it didn’t have a PR department. So when Pinterest did some quiet experimentation with automatic affiliate linking—that is, by adding tracking code to pins that linked to e-commerce sites, a technique that could be used to generate revenue—it didn’t disclose what it was up to.

Then pinners such as technology blogger Josh Davis discovered the automatic affiliate links and criticized the site for allegedly profiting off of user’s pins without telling anyone. The whole affair blew up into a mini-scandal, prompting Pinterest co-founder and CEO Ben Silbermann to call Davis and explain the testing process.

Ever since, Pinterest has been extremely wary about maintaining the trust of its pinners. You can see how that’s played out with promoted pins, which Bradford described as an idea shaped by surveying lots of users. It’s not just about making sure users are aware of how Pinterest makes money, but that it’s making money in a way that won’t squick out users the way affiliate links did.

“Promoted pins [are] the result of much testing,” she said. “You can only find the pins in searches and category feeds right now, where they’re most relevant and [least intrusive.] It’s the result of a lot of pinner and marketer feedback.” 

Slow And Steady

In September, promoted pins highlighted images for testing purposes. Beginning this May, promoted pins from an initial set of 12 advertisers will begin appearing in Pinterest categories and search results. 

From ABC Family to Walt Disney, they’re brands you’ve already heard of, which is probably why Pinterest selected them. Bradford noted that 93 out of the world’s top 100 brands have accounts on Pinterest, and there’s lots of advertiser demand for promoted pins. 

“Brands find Pinterest to be a rich canvas to tell their stories,” she said. “We’re very flexible. Search and display ads are a little bit confined in how you can tell your story to consumers.”

Even though promoted pins will only show up in particular parts of the site, opening the floodgates to all brands without alienating users might be tricky. Even Facebook and Twitter haven’t find a way to promote companies that doesn’t jar users out of their browsing experiences. So, as usual, Pinterest is currently opting for transparency and testing.

Bradford’s current plan is to help those advertisers learn how to best use Pinterest. Ideally, brands will then providing the kind of pins users like to see, making their promoted pins look less like ads and more like everyday shared images.

“Partnerships [with brands] aren’t just, ‘Go get ad dollars.’ That’s not how we think about it here,” Bradford says. “We’re really about teaching partners how to be their best on Pinterest and connect consumers in a very authentic way.”

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Seo In Guk lives a double life in teasers and making film for ‘High School King’ – allkpop

Seo In Guk lives a double life in teasers and making film for 'High School King'
Seo In Guk is seen trying to juggle his double life as a high school student and company director at just 18 years of age. Not only is there comedy, but romance as well as the teasers hint towards his love triangle with co-workers Lee Ha Na and Lee Soo

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Microsoft Offers Skype Promotion For Making Bing Your Default Search Engine

WinBeta reports that Microsoft is offering a promotion to Brazilian searchers to make Bing their default search engine and in exchange, they will get $2 of Skype credit to be applied to your Skype account. When you go to Bing Brazil (clicking this will set your Bing home page to the Brazilian…

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At Last, Women In Technology Are Making Themselves Heard

If you talk with women who work in technology long enough, the stories eventually come out. A familiar thread of discrimination or gender bias connects their tales—whether they realize it or not.

It’s hard to weave those stories together into a compelling picture of the challenges women in technology face, though, unless they’re told out loud and in public.

At Tuesday evening’s “Real Talk With Women in Tech,” event in San Francisco, concerned women (and a handful of men) came together to discuss how both women and men can work together to empower female voices, and help balance the gender ratio in the technological workforce. 

Developer and designer Julie Ann Horvath joined the event on Tuesday via videoconference to speak publicly about her own experiences.

Horvath’s story is notable. As one of the most prominent female figures at GitHub, a company that operates shared online workspaces and communities for coders, she spearheaded the Passion Projects campaign to get more women involved both at GitHub and the tech community at large. In March, she quit GitHub, saying she’d been harassed for months without repercussions. The company launched an investigation into Horvath’s charges and the environment for women at the company, and amid the controversy, GitHub’s founder and CEO Tom Preston-Werner resigned. GitHub’s internal investigation did “find evidence of mistakes and errors of judgment”—just not gender-based harassment.

Horvath’s story isn’t unique, but it is one that resonates with women because she has chosen to speak out.

“[GitHub] really pushed me to sign a nondisparagement agreement,” Horvath said at the event. “I refused to give up my truth, because there’s no amount of money that’s worth that to me, or at least my ability to talk about my experience.”

She said GitHub knew that if her story became public, it would impact the way people perceived the company. Horvath declined to sign the nondisparagement agreement in part because she knew an employee who had signed one and believed that woman may have come to regret her decision. 

In Horvath’s experience, the startup workplace can be like Lord Of the Flies: The people who come into power are the friends of the founders, and when someone different comes in, there’s a greater chance that they will get pushed out. 

According to Horvath, personal relationships played a large part in what she called a “toxic” GitHub work environment—she was punished both for dating one coworker, and refusing the advances of another. 

While Horvath was working at GitHub, many women in the tech community spoke out against GitHub’s culture. (A quick peek at GitHub’s team page shows how imbalanced the gender ratio is, especially among engineers.) She said that it was hard for her to defend GitHub’s culture while experiencing poor treatment. She started Passion Projects while at the organization to create a ripple effect in the industry. 

“Companies were basing their company culture around what GitHub did,” she said. “[Passion Projects] was an opportunity to throw that weight and influence behind an important cause.” 

When Horvath quit, she took Passion Projects with her, and the events are no longer associated with GitHub. She hopes that these events continue to empower both women and men in technology, and amplify the voices that are so often muffled. 

Talk About The Truth

In the technology industry, women are an underrepresented minority. 

To help close this gap and achieve professional success, women are told to “Lean In,” and put on a brave (and smiling) face. They’re told they should change how they speak and ban words like “bossy,” because they have a negative connotation, even though many women embrace the term, and are proud to be strong leaders.

Banning words is not a solution. That’s at best a linguistic Band-Aid over a problem that, when left untreated, can infect the workplace and result in women leaving their companies after suffering harassment, or continuously hitting a glass ceiling that doesn’t seem to crack. 

Women represent just 30 percent of the entire workforce in the technology industry, and only 15 percent of software engineering roles are held by women, according to recent data from professional networking site LinkedIn.

Of course, it’s not just a problem in technology. Women have trouble achieving and maintaining leadership positions in business, sports, or media, too—all businesses that are increasingly infused by technology and whose (mostly male) leaders look to Silicon Valley for inspiration.

At the New York Times, Jill Abramson, the executive editor, the newspaper’s highest-ranking editorial position, was fired from her position due to what publisher Arthur Sulzberger Jr. called “an issue with management in the newsroom.”

Many have debated how much gender played a role in her dismissal, as they did when Horvath quit GitHub. The common thread between Abramson and Horvath is that they refused to go quietly. Abramson refused to participate in the usual ruse about “retiring” to “spend more time with her family,” forcing the Times to admit what really happened. Her departure, as with Horvath’s, sparked a necessary debate—one that could only be held in an environment of transparency.

What Can We Do?

The first software programmers were almost entirely women—a historical reality that’s erased by the present-day reality that technology is a boy’s club, and has been for decades.

People are working to change that. Programs like Girls Who Code are trying to close the gender gap in technology; publications like Model View Culture highlight diverse voices and stories in the industry; and events like Passion Projects feature talks from prominent women in technology that inspire others to help change the ratio of women in tech.

And documentarian Kathy Kleinman is highlighting the historical contributions of women to the birth of the computer industry. Her documentary, The Computers, premieres Saturday at the Seattle International Film Festival. 

GitHub, too, is working to detoxify its work environment, but in order for the tech community at large to significantly change, there needs to be a perception shift—one driven by vocal supporters working to make the workplace equal. 

When asked how women can be supportive about challenges in the industry, Horvath said, “My best advice would be to talk to each other.” 

It begins there, but it doesn’t stop there. 

After Horvath’s discussion, another group took the stage to talk about how they’ve become successful women in technology—though the panel participants were quick to point out that they don’t like to be labeled as such. 

“The only label I’ve ever given myself is my first name and last name,” said Sepideh Nasri, a startup advisor and former vice president of Women 2.0. “Today I’m a ‘woman in tech’ because I’m on this panel. Labels are just temporary.”

It’s important to build relationships with advocates for gender equality in technology, and create a support system that insists all voices are heard. 

In the spirit of supporting one another, event attendees were eager to share their own experiences with the group, ranging from their incidences of harassment, to the challenges of picking out the clothes they wear to work functions. The recurring theme I heard over and over was, “Speak up.”

Sometimes it’s just not that easy. 

“Many times I wish there was someone looking out for me to make sure my voice was heard,” said Lauren Rosenthal, a product manager and UX designer in San Francisco. “If you’re in a meeting and people aren’t speaking out, as women, or men even, we need to make sure that we stop the conversation to make sure that person who might be hesitant to speak up, is speaking up.”

Change won’t come over night. And it’s not just the ratio of women that needs to change, but the ratio of other underrepresented minorities in tech, too. 

It starts with a community that’s educated and willing to be open to new ideas, and leaders that don’t just talk about Making A Difference, but enact real change. Leading technology companies have an opportunity to leverage their platforms to push for initiatives like Passion Projects that was started at GitHub. 

“There are actually women in tech,” Horvath said. “You just don’t hear their voices.” 

Lead image by Selena Larson; photo of Julie Ann Horvath via Twitter

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How YouTube Remarketing Is Making The World A Better Place by @alan_smith80

YouTube is a video sharing platform which allows users to find, share, and watch a wide variety of videos. These factors make it a unique sharing forum for video creators and marketers to advertise their products or services and reach out to a large audience. Users enjoy watching well made videos more reading text because videos are visually appealing and present information in an interesting format. A survey revealed nearly 60% of US Internet users visit YouTube at least once a week. YouTube is dominating the social media scene – and its video sharing ability continues to grow in popularity, taking marketing to the next level. […]

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