Woven Together Differently

Adventures in social media enlightenment


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Review: Mobile for Good by Heather Mansfield

cover_mobileforgoodWhen I took up my current job role, doing communications for an NGO, I started looking around for useful social media resources for NGOs and charities. In my search I came across Nonprofit Tech for Good and immediately signed up for their newsletter. That was how I found out about Mobile for Good by Heather Mansfield. I can quite honestly say that I had difficulty putting Mobile for Good down once I started reading it (though perhaps that says more about me and my social media obsession). I bought the ebook version, but I’d recommend getting a paper copy and sticking it next to your computer at work! Continue reading

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What if Twitter were like a gently flowing river?

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I never wanted to be one of those people who says they don’t have time for social media. Not least because I have spent my professional life telling people – oh, but you do have time for social media! And it’s not so much that I don’t have time. I could make time, and I do where I can. I sometimes spend my commute catching up on Twitter or writing blog posts (case in point, I’m writing this post on the train). I also usually find myself checking Facebook in the evening, after dinner.

There is time and I make it where I can. But even where I make time, I don’t always have the head for it. After an early morning, a commute, a full day at work, cooking dinner and getting ready for work the next day – my brain can’t really handle any thing more complex than the thought of going to bed. I find myself of an evening, scrolling through my various news feeds, only to realise that my head is somewhere else and I haven’t actually read anything. At the end of the day, Twitter and Facebook are just a bit too overwhelming. When my brain has spent all day processing and juggling various bits of information, the last thing it wants is to be bombarded with more information.

I like to drink Yogi tea. Mainly because of the little zen sayings that they put on the teabag tags. These nuggets of wisdom are kind of like tweets – only more calming. As I was reading a tag the other day, the thought crossed my mind that maybe I’d get more out of Twitter if I just received the odd tweet here and there – on the teabag tags during my tea breaks, on a napkin when I eat my lunch, on a sign post as I take my afternoon walk, spray painted on a fence seen from the train window (my favourite piece of train ride graffiti is the ‘It was all a dream’ outside Rotterdam Centraal).

I think my brain could just about manage that.


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How visible should social media icons be?

Image by Patrick Denker. Used under a CC 2.0 license.

Image by Patrick Denker. Used under a CC 2.0 license.

Working in social media, I often find myself going to company websites in order to find out about their social media presence, so it can be very frustrating when companies and organisations hide the social media icons away or make them so minute that they’re impossible to see. It seems so counter intuitive to me – surely you want people to click through to your Facebook or Twitter profile and follow your company on social media. Why hide the icons away? They should be large and placed at the top of every web page.

At least, that’s what I thought. However, I came across an interesting argument the other week that had me thinking twice about my previous stance on social media icons. The argument goes that because your website is the central focus of your online presence and you want to drive traffic to your website, not away, social media icons shouldn’t be prominently displayed because people will simply click straight through to Facebook and before they’ve even looked at your Page they’ll be distracted by the pictures of cute cats that their friends are posting. Therefore, social media icons should be placed at the bottom of your company’s web pages, not the top. Continue reading


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Why are images for social media articles always so dull?

Image by Jason A. Howie. Used under a Creative Commons 2.0 license.

Image by Jason A. Howie. Used under a Creative Commons 2.0 license.

I spend quite a lot of time reading online articles about social media. Since starting this blog I’ve also spent a lot of time looking for images to accompany my posts and it struck me recently – images for social media articles are really boring. Most of the time it’s either the Facebook or Twitter logo or a picture of a mobile or laptop screen. I’ve tried to avoid this as much as possible with my own blog posts, but it’s not easy. Continue reading


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This much we know: people don’t like change

Small change. Image by Adam Bartlett. Used under a Creative Commons 2.0 license.

Small change. Image by Adam Bartlett. Used under a Creative Commons 2.0 license.

Twitter recently launched a new design. I must have been part of a group to receive the new design early, because I was already perfectly comfortable with the new look when everyone else started angrily tweeting about it. In fact, my boyfriend was on Twitter as it happened and let out a cry of dismay. From my vantage point I tried to offer comfort:

That’s not to say that I too wasn’t initially dismayed. But once I recognised this gut reaction in myself, I took a minute to step back and look at the new design objectively. Once I did that, I realised it actually wasn’t that bad. Okay, I thought, I can live with this. Continue reading


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What gets lost in the social museum?

Image by iwillbehomesoon. Used under a Creative Commons 2.0 license.

Image by iwillbehomesoon. Used under a Creative Commons 2.0 license.

One of the things that fascinates me about social media is the way in which people use it to present a version of themselves to the world. Your social media profile is an opportunity to curate and present a particular vision of who you are. You choose the most flattering photos and untag yourself from the unflattering ones. You share only those parts of your life that you feel portray you in the right light. Even sharing everything is a choice. Continue reading