dave berlind

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Yesterday, for a friend at Reputation Management, I wrote about brands and reputation management. Today, I’m going to take a crack at “malicious comments and trolls.”  I was director of marketing at Zude back in 2006-08, a web start-up in the social computing space. We were a drag-and-drop web authoring tool — that the brand brief referred to as “the fastest easiest way to build a website.”  Zude earned Robert Scoble’s demo of the year and we had lots of big stories on Tech Crunch, Read Write Web, Giga Om, ZDNet and more. When you get that type of pub it brings out the trolls.

Dave Berlind a key blogger and confidant at the time, told us “Correct false information immediately, but don’t get dragged in to long harangues.”  Some people just love to type and argue. Don’t give them a forum. Another time, when director of marketing at an education company – and trust me educators like to type and argue – I was careful to allow different points of view, but never attempted to tit-for-tat them. Trolls bore easily and will find new people to pester.

In Social Media Guard Rails, is a key caution that applies to trolls and malicious comments, “Don’t anger the angry.”  It’s good advice.






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Retro Geek

I’m on a plane to San Jose, sitting next to a rather geeky young lady and she’s typing in a foreign word processing application.  I squint and squint and finally figure out it’s Notepad, or Wordpad.  Bare bones typing.  Then I show up at Dave Berlind’s Mashup Camp the next day and happen to sit next to another nerd — a consultant of some sort — and he, too, is typing in Notepad. Weird.

I’m in the heart of the tech country (Stanford, Google, etc.) and people are typing in a foreign, retro and presumably hard-to-use word processing app.  I gotta know why.  A few days later I mention it around the office, and the geeks think I’ve been smoking something, so I remain quiet.  I know what I saw.

Today, many weeks later, I decide to go to Wikipedia and look up Notepad.  You know what it said?  Notepad is a non-formatted text application that removes all tags and format from copy cut and pasted from a website. And vice versa.

Clearly, the people I espied were heavy web users/publishers and found it to be a much more facile approach.

Ergo, I am writing this document in Notepad and will paste it right into LiveJournal.  I’m betting that instead of my normal formatting problems — cutting and pasting and taking extra steps — copy will slide right in.

Of course, as the world’s worst typist, speller and editor, this excercise might be a major mistake.  Let’s see.


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