Another One Bites The Dust

(was called:  The First Lesson You Need To Know About Social Media)

Today I note the passing of Forumlists.    I’m honestly not sure if this particular Twitter tool was ever recommended by Mr. Everything  (You may note that I’m now just using a fictitious name and not linking…to anyone.  See the explanatory page.)  In a very professional blog post  the company explains that they have run out of money and have to take the site down.   They also graciously point to some other resources for Twitter lists.     I have written before that web sites come and go.   I have come to believe that real relationships with other human beings are the only thing that is truly enduring.

I got into a discussion on Facebook today with a couple of users, one of whom is moving a blog from WordPress.com  to self-hosted,  and another who is contemplating starting a blog and is not sure which way to go.  Full disclosure:  I sell web hosting.   I explained that if you’ve never blogged before and are not 100% sure that a blog needs to be a part of your #socialnetworking strategy it is perfectly reasonable to start off using a free host like blogger.com  or WordPress.com.   I do however strongly advise buying your own domain name before you publish your first post.   If you later decide to do a self-hosted WordPress (or switch to WordPress.com from self-hosted or any other blogging platform),  you would still be able to simply and easily import all of your posts and all of your comments.   And if you already own your own domain name,  and don’t change the structure in the import,  all of the links you’ve gotten for those posts and all of the shares and Likes etc.  carry right over.

I don’t ever want to become a “social media rock star” who bleats boringly about the “latest and greatest” tools.   I want to be the guy who explains that many tools have their uses and if you have a busy schedule,  deciding which tools to focus your time on is one of the most important decisions you have to make.   Unless you’re Mr. Everything the fact is you don’t have time to be everywhere.  So picking and choosing where and how to spend your time is the first #socialmedia lesson you really need to learn.

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24 comments on “Another One Bites The Dust

  1. Hi Alan, this is a great read. I don’t want to be a social media rockstar either. Just to make good connections. Thank for sharing these thoughts.. now I’m off to read Mr Everything. 🙂

  2. ” I have written before that web sites come and go. I have come to believe that real relationships with other human beings are the only thing that is truly enduring.”

    So true. I was very active on a site called Propeller 5 years ago and when it went kaput, I’ve kept in touch with some good friends I met there. When I joined EAv 3 weeks ago, it was a pleasant surprise to see some familiar faces like Louie Baur with whom I got acquainted with on Propeller and Digg years ago. “Sites come and go, relationships endure.” Fully agree, Alan.

    • I still have friends that I made twenty years ago in a forum on Compu$erve, where we all paid 8 bucks an hour for the only way most folks could get online, apart from local bbs’s and early .edu users. I’m actually quite certain about it. Websites and online communites come and go. People you’ve grown to care about tend to stay in your life, even if sometimes you lose touch in the shuffling of sites.

    • Liz,

      I don’t sell _cheap_ hosting and I never really do a hard sell. If you have the technical skills to use a hosting service that charges 4 bucks a month and you are satisfied with what you get for that, I certainly can not give you a better price. If you are dis-satisfied with cheap hosting, where your site shares a server with hundreds, perhaps even thousands of other sites, running all kinds of different back ends, some of which may not be compatible with your back end software….let’s just say that all hosting plans are not created equal. I will have your site hosted in the Amazon cloud on a server that only hosts sites using your CMS (for example if you use WordPress your site is hosted on a server that is specifically optimized to host nothing but WordPress). You get 99.99% real uptime, and you can contact someone you know (eg me and my friend at a small hosting company you’ll probably never find on your own.) I only sell one year contracts and it costs a Lot more per month than the cheapest plans out there. But smart consumers realize….you get what you pay for 🙂

    • I probably shouldn’t say this. But for me it is somewhat….well….political. There are definitely some social groups that I participate in because I genuinely enjoy most of the people I interact with. And choose to be Facebook friends with other people whom it would just be too awkward to snub, while participating in those communities. I am constantly trying to expand my circles, but have learned that to do so requires that I….errr….uhhh….sometimes edit some of my least attractive feelings and thoughts. Go along to get along. (I can’t make a moral high road case for it, but it is my choice 🙂

    • If you own a domain you can use it on any web site you ever decide to publish. Blogging is definitely not for everyone and if you’ve never blogged before I definitely think you should dip a toe in the free pool before you commit a lot of money to it.

  3. So very true! Even someone who works full time in Social Media does not have time to check out every tool or every new piece of technology that comes on the market. So thank you for sharing with us and letting us know they are out there for those who need them and your experience with them as the Internet grows and evolves.

  4. I think your advice to buy your domain name first regardless of where you’re going to blog is very sound. Even if you don’t know for sure that you’ll ever use it – get the name now because you may not be able to later.

  5. I never used the tool so it is not a big issue for me. There are new tools coming out at an alarming rate and unless they improve on the ones I am using now, I am not going to give them a lot of my attention.

  6. Lindy, Felissa,

    Thank you both so much for stopping by and for validating my truth. While in addition to writing and (hopefully) publishing books I also advise #indie writers about social media. I have a lot to offer and am very excited about this new blog. Hope life is treating you well these days.

    a

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