As most of you would be aware, I now work for a small ISP. As part of the salary package, I get an uncapped broadband account. In this country, “uncapped” and “unlimited” broadband is frequently advertised, but almost never delivered, so this benefit is a pretty cool thing in my opinion.
Having moved house on the weekend, Monday I applied to get ADSL installed. In the last four years, my new housemate – Steve – had asked several times to get ADSL installed, and each time, the Evil Empire said “not yet”.
Then, on Monday, the very day I submitted the order, Steve got a call from Bigpond saying “Hey, we can now give you broadband!”. Obviously, me applying sent the signal to the evil empire, so they tried to hijack the application and steal a potential customer.
In any other industry, this kind of abuse of information would be illegal. In our industry, it’s par for the course.
I don’t remember what prompted me to sign up to it. But I did, about a month ago. And for a while, I thought it was cool. Reminded me a bit of the old SixDegrees site. But like SixDegrees, it wore out its welcome, and now, I’m not all that keen, and I only go on there occasionally.
All those ‘applications’ on it just shit me really. And even though I’m on there as my blog-name, my cyber-name, I still think it’s a little too invasive. I guess I just don’t need it. Don’t need to play the game so many people there play – to treat it as a competition to see how many friends I have. On principle, I only add (or accept addition from) people I either know outside Cyberia or would actually have a drink with. So it’s not doing a lot for me.
Having said that though, I did renew contact with some people because of it. My old friend Princesss (who once found me via a previous incarnation of my blog too) and I have swapped messages because of Facebook. It’s not grabbing me though. God knows how some people get addicted to it. Seems there isn’t enough there to grab me.
Cyberia is a land where normal rules apply, but in fast-forward. A great example is how quickly the latest fad can take hold, can supernova into the greatest thing ever, and then die off almost as quickly. Sometimes though, the fad can swing the other way and create a lot of haters. I read recently about this kind of thing at Darren’s blog. He writes about marketing online but in this post, he wrote about how a viral marketing campaign can backfire and create a lot of hatred amongst the former promoters of the scheme. I suppose that happens in the real world with pyramid schemes and whatever. But in Cyberia, it all just moves so much faster.
Because I am about a fortnight behind in reading many of my subscriptions (but catching up today on a lot of the backlog), the whole BlogRush thing Darren talks about has emerged, peaked and swung back all in that time. So I only read about their huge push and viral marketing campaign earlier this morning. And now, I’m reading of their demise. It’s interesting to see just how fast the rollercoaster has gripped them.
The day after I moved into the house with Adam & Keiran, Adam blew the data download limit. We have been “shaped” therefore for the last 3 weeks. Today though, we’re back to normality. So I can return to my usual web habits, of reading a whole shiteload of blogs once more. It also means I can return to my addiction of TV Links. Let the happiness return! 🙂
A little while ago, a blogger I once linked to made me a suggestion. As well as his blog that I read, he had several others. One of them is all about web marketing, and something called “Search Engine Optimisation” – in other words, he writes a blog about how to boost your ratings with major search engines. Apparently there’s bunches of different tactics and strategies to maximise it. Presumably for ad revenue. In exchange for helping him research and write such articles, he’d give me a percentage of his ad revenue. I thought about it, but in the end, because I was focussed more on my hunting for a proper job, I declined. But it got me thinking, and reading a whole bunch of different blogs on blogs, writing, productivity tips and online marketing. Some of the marketing stuff especially strikes me as the kind of things I wish I’d known when I was managing bands and promoting them online. But ultimately, something like Search Engine Optimisation strikes me as a bit like futures traders – spending all your time dealing with ideas and concepts that aren’t “real”. I’m mildly interested in the ideas of who comes here and why, but to spend vast amounts of time fine-tuning a blog for marketing purposes would drive me insane I think.
I know some of you have done the whole “monetising” your blogs, or otherwise trying to make money online. And I’d like to hear more about your experiences with it. Feel free to share?
I would like my own domain name. I would like to get some web-space hosted and run WordPress locally, rather than running through WordPress.com. It will allow me more control over my content and the overall look and direction of my blog.
I’ve looked into it and two issues stand out.
One is a potential problem – I am not sure I know enough about what I am doing to do the management of setting up and operating WordPress on my own site.
The second issue is that the kind of web-hosting I want would supply me with *heaps* more space and data-transfer capacity than I would possibly use.
I figured therefore I’d solve the problem by utilising the second issue. Translation: I will share my additional capacity with some friends so they can help with the technical side of things.
So here’s the deal.
If you would prefer your blog be raised up from working in WordPress.com or Blogger, you can share my space. In exchange for assistance with setting up and operating the set-up. Fair call?
(All friends and colleagues I have invited to be part of this arrangement – you’re still in. This is just an exercise in expanding the small team)
Those of you who know the story of the May Massacre of last year might be surprised to read where I am. I’m in the AFK cafe in Jerusalem. Just down the street from the ‘Gabba. I had two and a half hours to kill between work and a talk I’m attending tonight. And to go home would have been a waste, so I decided to go looking for somewhere to fill in a couple of hours, and my net connection at home hasn’t been ideal lately, so this place seemed the logical choice.
Willett and Ozbhoy have done a good job with this place. The food is quite good, the pasta I had could have been a bit spicier, but Jewish cuisine is tamer than I am used to in Rome. The layout, the computers, the atmosphere, the decor, are all quite nice, and relaxing. As I type, about 4 of the dozen PCs are occupied. And a couple of the cafe tables are occupied by guys playing board games. Willett describes the place as a ‘computer cafe’ rather than a net-cafe, and I think the distinction is a good one.
I think it was a good decision to come here this afternoon. By being the one to walk thru their door, I am declaring an absence of hostility toward Willett & Ozbhoy, which I think is the best atttiude to have. I’m not going to re-hash the events of last year, but the guys were more caught up in it, rather than being active participants. So by coming here, I’m expelling those demons which have haunted the last year. Although this sounds much like an advertorial, I am here more because of me than because of them.
Disclaimer: Rather than telling people about this for payment, I’ve done the opposite. I paid for my dinner and my time at the cafe.
In more than a decade online, I have never seen a website that rivals this.
It is, by far, the greatest website I have ever found.
If you don’t have broadband, and a metric shiteload of data quota, it’s not much good to you.
My net connection is now so bad, I cannot even use things like MSN. I began to suspect Jim was screwing with the household network to make it worse than it need be. But it seems that it’s the fault of our ISP, the Evil Empire.
And they’re sending a tech out Saturday to fix it. So we might get something *close* to decent after the weekend.
It’ll be slow until the end of the month, but at least it might stay connected for more than 30 seconds.