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Fame: the terrible, horrible, no good, very bad Twitter tool

With everyone looking for ways to grow their Twitter following, many will have fun playing the new Fame game without understanding that it is temporary and not at all intuitive to get out of.



Fame: a viral Twitter game invoking the name of Lady Gaga

Fame is designed by New Yorker Adam Ludwin as a side project to give random users a gigantic follower count once a day. Users to to the Fame site, give it permission to access their Twitter account which enters them into a raffle with everyone else who connect, and daily, a random winner is chosen. The winner is automatically followed for the day by everyone who has entered the raffle.

The San Francisco Chronicle reports that Ludwin has actually spoken with Twitter about the project and had their blessing, especially given that Twitter’s API allows developers to add or remove followers from a user’s account, making the temporary mass following possible.

The tool/game/service is free and the company says they have no plans to monetize the site and through the API, they simply follow and unfollow the daily winner on your behalf, and as the site grows in number, they seek to be as big as or bigger than Lady Gaga, giving each daily winner a taste of the glory, as daily winners have a Fame logo on their avatar for the day to set them apart from others.

The game is just like a good ol’ fashioned raffle where you get one entry, but in the case of Fame, you earn more entries by inviting friends to join Fame. Anyone can unfollow the current winner if they dislike them, or manually follow them after their 24 hours are up if the winner is interesting.

The good news

It is hard to criticize a free, fun game that is simply built as someone’s side project, so we’ll start off by noting that this looks fun. Honestly. Imagine potentially having millions of followers for a day – what would you say? My personal Twitter stream would either terrify or bore the average American as I tweet mostly about very specific economic indicators, Ben Bernanke speeches, kittens and unicorns.

Wouldn’t that be fun? And if someone liked my tweets and remembered to go back and follow me the next day after my temporary fame was stripped away, the ecosystem is stroked and new connections are made. Sounds like a win, no?

Why it is terrible, horrible, no good and very bad

First and foremost, unorganic connections no matter how temporary are bogus. In the early days of Twitter, before they knew what they were doing, a simple script would allow users to follow thousands of others based on simple parameters such as words in their profile like “follow back,” thus gaming the system. While Fame is not gaming the system in a permanent way, this really feels like a wet T-shirt contest… a girl gets on stage with a bunch of other girls, bounces around, then the next morning, no one remembers who she is or that she even had a name.

Secondly, any service of any kind that incentivizes people to flood my already overflowing direct message box on Twitter with invitations to join them, it makes me think of FarmVille and I want to hulk out. This part is not Fame’s fault, they’re just trying to spread the word, but trust me, it’s going to get very, very old, very quickly – I predict people will be annoyed before the system hits half a million people.

Thirdly, their FAQ is very clear in that “if the winner is a spammer or bot, we draw again. Only real humans can win FAME!” But what happens when the winner becomes a spammer as soon as they win? Check out the most recent winner below and tell me if you see spam:

While the person above is a radio DJ and is expected to be somewhat spammy, imagine giving the mic to most teenagers on Twitter (like this kid, found with only 5 seconds of searching for an example on Twitter). Fame says, “If you Tweet anything harmful or abusive we will revoke your win. Examples of harmful or abusive Tweets include links to malicious software, pornography, or hate sites. If you abuse or troll FAME players in any way, we will ban you from playing. We have sole discretion to determine what is harmful or abusive.” This should prove to be a challenge – have you ever given a drunk the mic at a bar? It’s never, ever, ever pretty – nor is an excited college kid with a loud Twitter mic.

Fourth, most people that sign up will not read the permissions, understand the game, or know that to stop playing, they have to contact the company by email. The system is beautifully designed to rope in the cattle, gate them and know that they won’t intuitively understand how to get out. Brilliant, yet kind of inadvertently evil genius (which is actually a compliment, not a real criticism).

Lastly, a daily winner is unlikely to stand out in anyone’s stream that is following more than 20 people. I often hear, “you didn’t see me tweet about my baby taking her first steps?” with that hurt puppy look in their eyes, to which I always say “I follow thousands of people and only log on intermittently throughout the day, I can’t possibly read everything everyone says, it’s not personal.” It sounds mean, but it’s true and I’m in the majority.

It’s all good fun

All of the criticism aside, it looks like a fun game, but for our readers that are professionals, business owners, entrepreneurs and c-suite level, skip the Fame and build your own, lest you join the ranks of the teen Twitterati. Ludwin’s concept is fun and we know that it will explode in the coming weeks, but for professionals looking to grow their Twitter following, this isn’t on the list of things to do.

Lani is the Chief Operating Officer at The American Genius - she has co-authored a book, co-founded BASHH and Austin Digital Jobs, and is a seasoned business writer and editorialist with a penchant for the irreverent.

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  1. Tinu

    March 28, 2012 at 10:27 am

    Like you, I get how the game could be fun. But this just makes me think: dear. Lord. NO. Well at least people now have a review discussing the ins and outs of the game. Of course they forgot to tell everyone that being Internet Famous is Exactly like not being famous at all, only with all the annoying disadvantages that come with it…

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Social Media

Social media is being used for hiring, and no, we’re not talking just LinkedIn

(SOCIAL MEDIA) Social media has evolved from being only community-oriented to career-oriented. See how users are getting jobs by being creative.



social media, like tiktok, is being used for hiring. here are some examples of tiktok resumes.

Gen Z and Millennials are no doubt the heaviest users of social media, and perhaps the internet in general. But it’s no longer just about catching up with friends and family, posting memes, and hailing yourself as hashtag king – they are using it to get jobs in creative ways.

Kahlil Greene was a student at Yale University hell-bent on educating others about African American social movements and culture. Known as “The Gen Z Historian” on Instagram, TikTok, and LinkedIn, he got to posting about the lesser-known facts and stories of history, amounting to 1.3 million views very quickly, catching the attention of employers. Now with over 500,000 followers across all major platforms, Greene is heading to work in consulting focusing on public education.

“I think that’s the thing that people don’t realize that social media is everywhere, and it’s congruent with every lifestyle you want,” says Greene.

Another TikToker, Emily Zugay, has over 2 million followers on the platform from hilariously redesigning brand logos. Her personality of shooting down brand choices with such a dry delivery is sure to make you giggle. She’s appeared on Ellen, and many brands changed their logos to her suggestions, including McDonald’s, the NFL, Tinder, Doritos, and Nascar. Just announced, Panera Bread is realizing limited holiday cups by Emily Zugay, taking a stab at Starbucks who typically creates the mad rush for holiday cups. Though she hasn’t publicly spoken about taking on a new role due to her wacky design endeavors, she has been approached for many partnership collaborations and markets herself as a content creator on the platform in order to rack in the dough.

Having the perfect one-page resume and perhaps, an inkling of personalization in the cover letter (which no one enjoys writing and barely anyone reads), is no longer the secret to landing jobs. 92% of companies use social media to hire.

“Creating a personal brand doesn’t have to be scary, hard, or time-consuming. You just have to be yourself. Consistent posts, a few follows and some direct messaging can go a long way to open doors.”

TikTok launched a pilot program of applying to the short-form video powerhouse by well, making a TikTok on the platform. Within 48 hours, 800 videos were submitted with #TikTokResumes in their captions. Expanding from internal hiring to external hiring, the program allowed job seekers to apply with their videos to Chipotle, Target, Shopify, and more.

Want to get in on the action but don’t know where to start? Unfortunately, the TikTok submissions have now closed, but you can always follow these tips to start getting creative for your next career move: Embrace the tools on the platform, do your research about the company you’re applying to, make connections on the platform and within the company, show off achievements as you would in a typical resume, and be yourself!

For more cool resume ideas, check out this article on the most creative techie resumes.

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Social Media

Reactions to Twitter Blue from real subscribers, p.s. its not worth it

(SOCIAL MEDIA) Twitter’s paid subscription service, Twitter Blue, gives more control over tweets and custom UI, but subscriber reception has been lukewarm.



Twitter Blue Sign Up Page

Twitter Blue, a paid subscription service that gives users increased control over their tweets and the appearance of their interfaces, launched this summer. Subscriber reception has been lukewarm, foreshadowing some resistance to shifts away from advertising-based revenue models for social media platforms.

The allure of Twitter Blue isn’t immediately apparent; beyond a relatively low price tag and increased exclusivity on a platform that emphasizes individuality, the service doesn’t offer much to alter the Twitter experience. Twitter Blue’s main selling point – the ability to preview and alter tweets before sending them – may not be enough to convince users to shell out the requisite three dollars per month.

Other features include the option to change the theme color and icon appearances. Twitter Blue subscribers can also read some ad-supported news articles without having to view ads courtesy of Twitter’s acquisition of Scroll, a company that provides ad-free news browsing.

But even with this variety of small customization options and the promise of more to come, users are skeptical. Android Central’s Shruti Shekar is one such user, beginning her review with, “Right off the bat, this feature isn’t worth the money you’d be spending on it every month.”

Shekar posits that the majority of the features are wasted on long-term users. “I think a lot of my opinions come from a place of using Twitter for so long in a certain way that I’ve gotten used to it, and now I find it challenging to adapt to something that would theoretically make my life easier,” she explains.

One of those adaptations centers on Twitter Blue’s “Undo Tweet” feature – something that belies the notion of proofreading and using common sense before sending thoughts into the nether.

“For me, 95% of the time, I really do pay attention to my tweets before I send them out,” says Shekar.

Twitter Blue checking Tweets before sending.

Shekar does praise Twitter Blue’s “Reader Mode” feature that allows users to view threads as uninterrupted columns but argues that the feature would probably end up being underutilized despite being a cool concept.

The aforementioned color and theme customization was of little interest to Shekar. “I actually found it a bit challenging to get used to the other colors, not because they’re ugly, but again because I am just so used to the classic blue,” she says.

One problem here is that the options to change link and theme colors and put threads in reader mode seem more like accessibility features than premium content. Twitter might do well to make these available to all users, if for no other reason than to avoid criticism about locking quality of life updates behind a subscription paywall.

Shekar’s criticism hits on a crucial point for any social media company looking to emulate Twitter Blue’s subscription model: Even if the subscription price is low, companies have to be prepared to make actual meaningful changes to the user experience if they want satisfied subscribers. That includes building in options that don’t fundamentally alter the basic aspects (or appearance) of the platform.

For more on Twitter Blue, check out their blog post on it here.

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Social Media

Instagram flaunts new features, including a decked out desktop experience  

(SOCIAL MEDIA) It’s been a time of exciting product and feature announcements for Instagram with additions of Collabs, fundraisers, and desktop posts on deck



Instagram displayed on a desktop

It’s been a time of exciting product and feature announcements for Instagram on both mobile and desktop.

Collabs Feature

“Collabs” allows up to 2 accounts to co-author a post or Reel, both sharing joint ownership of what is ultimately published. The post or Reel will show up equally on both users’ feeds with the same amount of engagement numbers, but combined, including comments, view numbers, and like counts. This is initiated through the tagging screen and the invited account will have to accept the offer before the collab can be complete.

Examples of adding a co-author in Instagram Collabs feature

Fundraiser & Reel Features

Instagram was quick to jump on the short-form content trends taking the social media world by storm. With the rise of TikTok, the Insta platform that was originally focused on static photos added Reels, along the same wavelength of short 15, 30, or 60-second videos, though the competitor has now expanded with the option of 3 minutes. Even so, Instagram is taking the time to improve music-related features within the Reels section of the app, adding “Superbeat” and “Dynamic.” The first adds effects to the video matching the beat of the chosen song, while the latter offers unique and interesting ways to display the song’s lyrics on screen. In addition, they are beginning to test the option to run fundraisers on a post by clicking the + button in the top right corner of the interface.

Examples of Dynamic for Reels feature

 Desktop Feature

FINALLY! Instagram is now realizing just how many users truly enjoy the desktop experience. If one were to compare the platform on the mobile app vs. desktop, they would see the slew of differences between the two with the desktop interface looking like the 1st year Instagram was even introduced. Functionality is no comparison; they only just added the ability to DM on desktop last year. As one can see, there is an extremely limited experience on desktop, but Instagram is now rolling out the ability for users to post from their browsers. Catch us enjoying posts on the big screen!

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