GeoCities R.I.P.

Am I the only one who is discreetly wiping a tear from my eye to learn that Yahoo! is shutting down GeoCities?  Back in the day, GeoCities RULED! Honestly, GeoCities hasn’t crossed my mind in years, and I was surprised to read it was pulling this kind of traffic recently:

GeoCities’ traffic has been falling over the past year. According to ComScore, GeoCities unique visitors in the U.S. fell 24 percent in March to 11.5 million unique visitors from 15.1 million in March of 2008. Back in October, 2006, it had 18.9 million uniques.

If you remember the old GeoCities, you can really appreciate how far the web has come in a short period of time with free blogging sites, MySpace, Facebook, etc. It’s kind of sad that the cutting edge concept of allowing everyday people to build an attractive website pioneered by GeoCities has left it so far behind.

What’s next? Yahoo Games?

Time to Move This Island

Twitter has definitely changed a lot of things for lots of bloggers. To compound matters, Twitter changes things with Facebook too. I’ve been thinking about the best way to handle all three of these things for a while. There are few issues that come up which make it almost impossible to not annoy someone. Usually I wouldn’t care about that, but how to deal with these things has been bothering me as well:

  • I like Twitter updates fed into Facebook, but I’m finding that most people on Facebook don’t realize that I’m not actually on Facebook when they show up. So I end up getting replies on my status, an email about those replies (yes, I know I can suppress those), along with the replies I’m actually expecting on Twitter itself. Worlds collide! I don’t want to disable the emails because I still want to be notified when people are replying to my actual status updates.
  • I like Twitter to be updated when I write a new post here. I realize that’s annoying for a lot of people as a general concept, but my tweet/post ratio is probably close to 30/1, so it can’t be that annoying. And the stuff I write here matches up pretty well with the stuff I tweet.
  • I like hitting the “Post to Twitter”  button to tweet what I find interesting in my browser, but that seems like it may be annoying for my regular Twitter followers, and it may not match up with what I tweet.
  • I’d like to be able to make short blog posts out of these tweets from the browser, Instapundit style, but that format doesn’t really fit in here either. Most of what shows up here is what I’m thinking, usually a little longer than 140 characters, and is coming from me instead of just a one line comment on someone else’s post.
  • Online reputation management is becoming a bigger deal. Since I own www.scottadcox.com, I figured I should go ahead and use it.

Here’s what I’ve come up with…

  • Removed my ‘sadcox’ Twitter feed from my Facebook status updates. I figure I can still use Facebook’s built in status update, possibly for more personal type stuff. So…don’t expect too many updates there…heh. That move is more for me than for other people.
  • Set up a new ‘scottadcox’ Twitter account, mainly to handle tweets coming off the browser. So there shouldn’t be any more “Reading:” tweets on my sadcox account unless I make a mistake. I’ll be using the ‘sadcox’ account more for conversation, replies, etc. I still consider that my “real” Twitter account. No need to follow the new one unless you just want to see what I’m reading. In other words, no interaction on that account.
  • Set up a new blog, www.scottadcox.com. This will mostly be made up of the tweets from the browser, which will let me post Insty-style.  I even found a theme that works well for that type of posting. It will be very frequent with limited commentary, like Twitter for people who don’t use Twitter.

I don’t really have any plans for monetizing the new blog–it’s mostly just for linking out. There may be some VERY unobtrusive ads later, but that’s not really on the table at this point. The basic idea is to make something easy to read and pop lots of interesting stuff. I’ve felt pretty limited here in not being able to do that just because of the layout, and I’m not really interested in completely shifting gears here and changing what I’ve been doing.

Maybe I’ll change my mind later…dunno.  For now I’m going to put the feed from the new blog in the sidebar here. Hopefully these two will end up working together somehow, and I’ll figure out exactly how that will happen according to the bumps in the road I’m sure to encounter.

Twestival Knoxville

twestivalKnoxville Overground is promoting Twestival Knoxville this Thursday at Smoky Mountain Brewery at Turkey Creek from 6:00-9:00 pm. This is an international fund raising event for charity: water. Come out and join a bunch of cool people from Twitter (and me) for some fun.

You can RSVP on Facebook or Eventbrite. Or…just show up if you want to!

Even if you can’t make it out, you can help the cause by buying music at Testival.fm. Feel free to grab this little badge thingy and blog about it yourself!!!

Be there, or be at home. On Twitter.

A Car, A Washer/Dryer, and Air Conditioning

No, this isn’t a Johnny Carson Carnac skit.  And yes, I’m old enough to remember Carnac, even though I didn’t get it.

These are the first three items that are considered to be necessities by Pew Research Center.

You know what that means–it’s just a matter of time before everyone has a “right” to these things.

And once something is a right, of course, we can get it from the gov’ment.

For “free”.

HT Reason Hit & Run

Check Out This Cool School Project

Dan over at Backroads Newsroom is hosting a cool project for some high school seniors going to the Inauguration.  They’re updating details of their trip on Twitter, Flickr, Twitpic,etc. and he’s aggregating the updates.

Very cool use of technology and journalism going on as these students document their trip to DC for their community.  I’m also following the students who have sent updates so far on Twitter…@morganesmith, @SColgrove, @tkelliott, @jwrundle, or their hastag– #wcindc.  And here’s their Flickr pool.

Blog Commenters UNITE!

The announcement of this new left-leaning blog made me wonder something…

When left-leaning blogs and websites show advertising, what happens to the money?  I mean, a blog is nothing without its readers, just like a company is nothing without its workforce, right?

Is the money left over after operational costs are paid dispersed evenly amongst the people who comment and the site owners/publishers?  Do they only accept enough advertising revenue to pay the bills for hosting?

Does it seem right that the owner of such a site would profit off the work of the people who leave comments there and provide content and community? And really, it shouldn’t matter how good your comments are or how often you comment, right?

I guess the principle dictate that whoever has been commenting the longest (seniority) should get the most money, even if they don’t leave comments that often any more.

I think people who comment on blogs should unionize.

At least it would get me to stop blogging.  The only thing my commenters are ever going to get here is berated. 😀

A Quick Hi and Some Thanks!

The last few days have been pretty crazy.  Last Thursday Newscoma and I launched a little project, NewsTechZilla.  We thought it was a good idea and would be a fun way to document some stuff.  Little did we know it would explode.  We’ve seen an unbelievable amount of support (and traffic) so far, and I want to take second to thank some people from this side of the State for their help.  Without you guys, we would not have seen this kind of success.

Seriously, you guys helped us get the word out, give us feedback, encouragement, and even content.  We can’t thank you enough!

Michael Silence was unbelievably generous in writing our first feature article, and he went a step further by featuring us in his Sunday deadwood column.  Jack Lail wrote a very nice intro for us on his blog last Thursday too.  These guys got us noticed by Glenn Reynolds, who gave us an unbelievably successful first day “live” when he linked to us from Instapundit. All this within the first three days!!!

Guys, I know a link from me here is worth about 1/100 of what you did for us, but it’s all I can do for now.

Since then, we’re receiving more support from people like SVD at KTownLowDown, and some local guys from Copa Creative, Abunga.com, and TUAW who were generous with their time in answering some questions about the iPhone for an article we were doing.  I can’t even begin to thank all the people who’ve talked about us on Twitter and sent their followers our way.

I’m uber-busy with work (real job) right now, but I intend to (at some point) thank all the local people I’ve forgotten in this short post and all the other folks around the country who’ve been so supportive.

I’m also going to change that poll before the eight week period (I hope).

A Content Generating Machine

NewsTechZilla!!!
NewsTechZilla!!!

Obviously, I’m not talking about me.  I’m talking about Newscoma, who normally writes more before 9 am than I get to read all day.  How lucky am I to get to work on a new project with someone like that?

There’s a lot of buzz in the blogosphere right now about the demise of newspapers and changes in the media.  This “citizen journalism” thing seems to be a little more than just a fad.  It’s leaving a lot of journalists with some choices to make, and it’s a tough row to hoe for some to learn new technology.

So we’re developing a resource to help them along the way, answer questions, and discuss the changes that are occurring in media right before our eyes.  We were even able to persuade Michael Silence to write our first featured article.

NewsTechZilla is where tech (me) and journalism (Newscoma) collide, duke it out, shake hands, exchange barbs, and hug it out for the good of all.

Actually, there’s good stuff theree for everybody, not just journalists.

We just decided to do this a couple of weeks ago, and we’ve been working like mad over the holidays to generate content, work on our site layout, get our feeds up, fix the things I break, etc. and “officially” launch today.  Go over, check it out, SUBSCRIBE (it’s free) and jump into the fray.

I Made the Deadline This Year

But just barely. Last year’s “year-end” post didn’t get written until we were literally hours into 2008. I’m on the ball this year though.

Lots of changes for me this year!  One big event is that I changed jobs.  More accurately, I quit my job and got another one later.  It was basically a case of a one man union going on strike.  Negotiations didn’t go as well as I’d hoped, but I’m in a much better place now.  That seems to happen to me every time I change jobs.  Not a bad time at all to move out of the auto industry anyway.

I took advantage of my new situation to work on some really cool stuff in 2008, and I’ve met some great people who are thinking in the right direction.  Most of them are more Twitter-centric than blog centric, but I’ve also made some great connections in the blogosphere that have helped me become super-productive and inspired.  I’ve finished this year in a frenzy working on a new project that I’m very excited about–more on that tomorrow when it’s officially launched.

But enough about me.  Let’s talk about me.  Here are my top 5 posts from 2008, as determined by you the reader:

5.  Jitterbug Cell Phones for Old People
I saw this commercial and thought it was downright insulting to elderly people.  Then again, I like the idea of having a phone that just lets you talk to people and nothing else.  It’s very novel.

4.  Homeschooling Ruled Illegal in California
That may have been a little bit of an exaggeration, but not much.  It comes down to the State of California claiming to have more of a right to decide how a child is educated than a parent does.  Right.

3.  Died in a Blogging Accident
I saw this cartoon on XKCD and thought it was funny.  It turned out to be one of the most searched for terms on Google that day, and me being the SEO master that I am, I popped up second.  Weird that traffic is still tricking in on this.

2.  My Ideal News Thingy
One of the things I’d hoped for in 2008 was to get a link from Instapundit, and I got it pretty early on.  It’s interesting that almost one year later, I’m involved in a project that deals directly with some of the things I talked about in this post.

1.  Another Naked Idiot
Like everyone else with a blog, my most popular post is bound to be about a chick getting naked.  I’ve made a habit of writing about naked idiots because, well, because they make me laugh.  They get traffic if you are early to post.  LOL!  I try to keep it confined to naked idiots in Tennessee, but we seem to have exceeded our quota over the past couple of years.

So if you made it to the end, there’s actually a little bit of a payoff.  The biggest news of this year is that we are having another delivery from the stork in July 2009 and we’re super excited about it!  Aside from lots of work, I’ve been pretty busy lately taking care of The Missus, who gets morning sickness 24/7 for the first 20 weeks of pregnancy.  That further explains the sparse posting, but I plan to pick it up as she starts feeling better.