Monthly Archives: October 2013

You’re Not Just The Product, You’re The Ads (And Your Friends Should Thank You)

Description:  Word of mouth, sponsored. Trusted recommendations, promoted. Reviews from friends, endorsed. This is the new lexicon of advertising.


Date: Oct 10, 2013


Facebook pioneered this social advertising model in 2011 with its “Sponsored Stories” ad units. Facebook’s filtered News Feed only shows you the most important posts about your friends. But if you Like a brand’s Page or post, check in at a business, download or use an app, or share a link, advertisers can pay to boost that action’s visibility in the feed or have it appear in sidebar ads.

Twitter has social ads too. Its “Promoted Tweets” show posts from businesses you don’t follow. To show these businesses are reputable and relevant the ads show the names of people you follow who follow that business. A Promoted Tweet from HP in my stream mentions three accounts I follow that follow it. Twitter doesn’t use your face, words, or content in its ads, though, and the social context is much less prominent than on Google and Facebook.

Combing social signals with advertising makes marketing seem less generic, which is important considering how many ads we see on a daily basis.  READ REST OF STORY 


Questions for discussion:

1. “Without ads, services like Google, Facebook, and Twitter might have to charge.”  Do you agree with this statement?  Why or Why not?

2.  What are the downsides of “you: becoming the ads?


Online dating company eHarmony thinks it can help you fall in love and get job

Description: After watching his online dating company struggle against increased competition, Neil Warren came out of retirement with an IDEA to revive eHarmony.


Date: Sept 22, 2013

Questions for discussion:

1. How much confidence do you have that companies can find you true love or the perfect job?  Explain

2.  What other types of decisions do you feel this type of software could help you make?  List and explain.

Give Yourself 5 Stars? Online, It Might Cost You

Description:  New York regulators will announce on Monday the most comprehensive crackdown to date on deceptive reviews on the Internet.


Date: Sept. 22, 2013

The yearlong investigation encompassed companies that create fake reviews as well as the clients that buy them. Among those signing the agreements are a charter bus operator, a teeth-whitening service, a laser hair-removal chain and an adult entertainment club. Also signing are several reputation-enhancement firms that place fraudulent reviews on sites like Google, Yelp, Citysearch and Yahoo.

A phony review of a restaurant may lead to a bad meal, which is disappointing. But the investigation uncovered a wide range of services buying fake reviews that could do more permanent damage: dentists, lawyers, even an ultrasound clinic.  READ REST OF STORY 

Questions for discussion:

1. What do you feel is the best way to discern authentic reviews on the web ? Why?

2.  Do you feel that this problem could be the end of a service like Yelp Why or  Why Not?