From a marketing and advertising perspective, Facebook is a game. It may not be very fun for businesses, but just because you don’t like something doesn’t mean that you don’t have to play along to be successful. On the other hand, some businesses have plenty of fun on Facebook. Whether you do or not makes absolutely no difference, though some will say that if you’re having fun with it that you’ll be more successful. I contend that fun or no fun, you still play the same way if you’re doing it right.
The statement could be pushed over to just about any true Web 2.0 site where voting and popularity determine the success of a piece of content. Facebook, Twitter, and MySpace – overrun by spam. Mixx, Propeller, Yahoobuzz – spam havens.
For social news powerhouses Digg, Reddit, and StumbleUpon to be so changed by the presence of gobs and gobs of spam hits a little harder. They are the sites where I started my journey in Web 2.0. They are the shiny beacons of user-controlled, traffic-generating goodness that made mainstream media look to the people for their opinions and discoveries.
They are, for all intents and purposes, shells of what they should be, and spam is to blame. Perhaps more importantly, how they handled spam over the years has caused them to close their networks in one way or another through a series of witchhuntesque spam countermeasures.
The shout system has been a roller coaster ride of emotion for me.
- First impressions: “WAY Cool. Now I can talk to friends and if I have something that I really want to get out to the peeps, I can!”
- Second impression: “Oh s**t, here come the spammers.”
- Third impression: “Hey, the spam seems to work! A ton of them are hitting the front page. I better give it a try.”
- Fourth impression: “Damn. It’s not as effective anymore. People are ignoring their shouts.”
- Current impression: “The system is a broken one, but by golly it can be fixed…”
And here’s how: