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Ira & Carol Serkes
Pacific Union RE
Berkeley, CA USA


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Saturday, August 22, 2009

"Social Networking" Sites - Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Blogs, Flickr, Google...

||||| "Social Networking" Sites - Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Blogs, Flickr, Google...

Here's what I've learned about Google Groups, and other online/"social networking" sites.

Most are free; I paid $25 or so for an annual Flickr Pro site, and $99 for an annual MobileMe (Mac) site

Many of these have privacy settings, but it's best to assume that whatever you post can be seen by others.

What goes on in twitter definitely does not stay in twitter... but that's the purpose of it - to disseminate information...though some information shouldn't be.

Let me know if you'd like more information.

Feel free to forward this post to others. It doesn't need to "Stay in Vegas"



Google Groups - http://groups.google.com/

I've set up several Google Groups - Our neighborhood group is a Google Group. Great for communicating with members within each group. If you set up a google group, I recommend making it opt-in and by invitation only.

If you collect, create, travel, write, eat, cook, read ... there's probably a group for you. It's easy to create one (or more) google groups.

Posts are generally private


Twitter - http://twitter.com/

Twitter is interesting. Just as light has both wave and particle properties, Twitter is both useless and useful.

Some people "tweet" about what they had for breakfast or where they are at the moment.


That said, I think that every one of us should set up a twitter account.


It's a redundant means of communications in case of emergency.

One person was arrested in Cairo - he sent out a "tweet" and was released from prison that day.

Mumbai Massacre? Twitter used to communicate what was going on.

Miracle on the Hudson. One Thursday I saw a tweet by Science Friday "Fire Trucks and Ambulances heading to the Hudson"

It was NOT the kind of thing you'd expect to receive from Science Friday on Thursday.

I immediately turned on the radio and heard about the plane landing on (in?) the Hudson River.

When you "tweet" it goes out to all your followers. If they feel it's important or interesting, they will "retweet" to all their followers.

In other words - geometric, viral distribution of information.

In case of an emergency/earthquake, one of the first things I'd do is to us Twitter to "tweet" about it, then immediately let anyone following me know we were OK.

Please set up a twitter.com account and take it for a test drive.


Facebook - http://www.facebook.com

Great for connecting with old friends.

I saw a 51 Chevy parked on Sonoma Avenue, took a picture on my iPhone, and emailed the photo to Facebook.

Within an hour my friend Arthur Pincus (still living in The Bronx) said "it looks like one of the cars my father used to sell"

I answered back "I remember his used car lot on Boston Post Road"

And we each brought back pleasant memories about growing up in Pelham Parkway (Bronx Park East and Bolton Street, to be specific)

I like Facebook.


LinkedIn - http://www.linkedin.com/

Business Related. If you're looking for a job, this is where you need to be.


Flickr - http://www.flickr.com/

I really like Flickr - it's a photo/video site

For $25 I upgraded to Flickr Pro which lets me upload unlimited photos ... and easily add the photos to a map to show where I took it.! Very cool - I mapped a Hindu Temple in Bangkok, and the Kowloon waterfront location where I took pictures/video of the Hong Kong Light show

I tried out Picasa (Google's picture site) after using Flikr for a few months. Flickr is vastly superior.

I batch resize and watermark ALL photos before uploading them.

http://stuntsoftware.com/Downsize/ is a super $19.95 mac program which does just what I want

Flickr lets you organize your photos into Collections and Sets

San Francisco Bay Area
Art Deco Architecture

and within each collection are sets

- Asia
-- Hong Kong

San Francisco Bay Area
- East Bay
-- Berkeley California
--- Thousand Oaks Neighborhood
--- Northbrae/Westbrae

I REALLY like Flickr

You can even join Flickr Photo Groups - I'm a member of "Art-Deco - London"

A law firm in Dowtown Oakland liked my photo of the Fox Theater Grand Opening so much, they asked for permission to use it in their newsletter.


YouTube - Part of Google - http://www.youtube.com/

I'm still playing with YouTube

I've created videos from HD video (the Panasonic Lumix Camera takes HD Video and fits in my vest pocket) and also from Still Shots using the Ken Burns "panning" effect.

If you have a newer Mac, iMovie is superb for movie making and uploading to YouTube


Blogs - Part of Google - http://www.blogger.com/

Talk about anything which interests you

I have one blog for Art Deco Architecture, another for Living In Berkeley


Tying it all together

A free membership with http://ping.fm lets you take photos with your smart phone (iPhone works great), email to a special email address, and have it post on several sites.

I'm a Macophile.

MobileMe is a $99/year mac service which synchronizes calendars, files, browser bookmarks, and hosts your photos and video

iMovie integrates with YouTube and MobileMe

iPhoto integrates with MobileMe, Facebook, Flickr & Email

Let me know if you'd like more information.

Ira Serkes


At 8:20 AM, Anonymous Dawn Thomas said...

Great post, Ira!

It provides the 1-2-3's of the sites you have discovered and like using. Most people don't think of Twitter as a redundant form of communication in an emergency. I think that idea is very intelligent!


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