I am Famous, Therefore I Blog

Ego blogging seems to be the big thing. If the egos aren’t blogging, they are telling other bloggers how bad their ego is. Trust me, I represent – both the ego, and the telling egos off.

So I’m offering a new Technosailor tee-shirt for sale that states very simply, “I am famous, therefore I blog”.

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The shirt is a high quality American Apparel tee-shirt (if you’ve never had one, they are super comfortable) and that should be enough to pay the premium price. I admit, these shirts cost more than some chinsey Cafépress tee shirt but it won’t fade, shrink or get stretched out like those ones do. Nor will it make you sweat unnaturally with some iron on crap.

No, this is high quality and comfortable and will last. You’ll be supporting me, plus staking your claim to internet fame. Now, people will know you’re famous. Because you have to make sure they know!

I will have a ladies tee available shortly as well and open to suggestions on other preferred colors. Enjoy!

Update: Ladies tees are available as are different colors and sizes. Buy one now.

Be Confident

There’s a bit of a meme going around that started with Mitch Joel. He is asking what the best social media practices are and why. Chris Brogan picked it up and it’s finally trickled to me via Micah.

Confidence is sexy. Confidence oozes through and greatness is often catapulted to new levels because of confidence. Of course, confidence is also a double edged sword. Although it will ensure that you will eventually be noticed (at a minimum), it is also the thing that will get you into trouble.

Confidence is not cherished by everyone. In fact, inevitably a confident blogger will be called arrogant or egotistical. Others, who don’t understand the confidence, will try to turn it into something else. They will tell you to stop putting on a front and be yourself. They will try to convey their own best practices, which are successful for them, on you and criticize your approaches.

Confidence says you ignore naysayers. You’re not there for them anyway. You’re there for yourself. Unless you’re Brogan, then you’re there for everyone.

Regardless, when you’re confident, you’ll have complete faith in your position. Confidence does not mean you don’t listen to others or objectively weigh their opinions or feedback. That would be silly. Iron sharpens iron. But confidence knows when to listen and when to ignore.

At the end of the day, confidence is about knowing where you are going and maintaining that mission as your singular focus. Techniques can change and feedback can adjust the techniques and practices. But nothing takes your vision away from your goals and if an idea or topic does not enhance that vision, then throw it away.

Last night on Twitter, I came into the tail end of a conversation where someone was insulting right-wing conservatives. They were labeling conservatives as pitiful and shameful and that they would not debate with anyone who was a conservative.

Now, I’m a conservative in the pure sense of the word. I am not a conservative in the mold of the modern day Republican party, and in fact true conservatism is more reflective of modern day liberalism than modern day conservative. It values individuals above all else. It values individual dollars, individual choices, individual consequences, individual governance. These are mantras synonymous with modern day liberalism and not modern day conservatism which wants to nation build, empire build and take away individual opportunities and invade individual lives.

I don’t talk about politics much on this blog. Occasionally if it serves a larger point that is in the mission of “Technology, business and new media”. I was asked to blog about the definition of true conservatism, and I declined. It’s not in my genre. It doesn’t further my goals. I’m confident in my goals. Yes, I could get lots of traffic and a nice dialogue going on political issues, but I’m confident in my own focus that I won’t dedicate a post to a political discussion at this time.

There are various stripes of social media person. Some people do it for themselves. Micah is a good example of this. Some do it professionally. Darren is like this. Others use it to create positive energy for the brand they work for. Scott Monty does this for Ford, but doesn’t use his blog as much as he uses Twitter and other mediums. Still others do it for community. Liz Strauss is this way.

Whatever your goal, be confident in it and stay on course. It doesn’t really matter who does or says what. Just do it regardless. This confidence level could be the difference between a long-tail blogger and the proverbial “A lister”.

I’d love to hear this concept expounded on, or other social media techniques, by Scott Ellis, Mark Jaquith and Karoli – each notable in their own area of expertise and outside of the proverbial social media echo chamber.

Issues don't go away when Congress goes home…

…is something a certain site editor said to me as I complained about lack of substantiative things to write about.

This complaining also took place during a break in one of my classes on property. Today we’re talking about the right to exclude someone from using your property, which in some cases is absolute, and some cases not (I guess I should remember this for the exam).

Anyway, one of the cases that we’re looking at today is Loretto v. Teleprompter Manhattan CATV Corp (458 U.S. 419). It has to do with a cable company maintaining cables on a reluctant landlord’s property for the use of a tenant.

Which brings me to something I’ve been thinking about recently, having talked about it on a few of Leslie Poston‘s Topics On Fire podcasts, specifically regarding the Digital Divide. Did you know, for instance, that public housing residents cannot get subsidized cable modem service, because broadband is considered “entertainment?”

I bet you didn’t.

Is broadband really “entertainment” these days? I know I certainly was entertained by watching two of my college rowing teammates win Olympic Bronze medals in the Mens’ Eight last weekend, but working from home using that same broadband pipe is far less entertaining.

And even less entertaining is having to apply for unemployment benefits. If you’ve been in that situation, some states require (or suggest, very strongly) that you do it online. But what if you can’t get online?

Shireen Mitchell (aka DigitalSista) has made this a major issue, and something that I’ve tried to investigate, with little success, because of the patchwork of state and federal regulations governing access to government services. There are acts requring the use of more online resources and less paper, but those people still have a right to the services. Sometimes, Mitchell says, this means an office functionary downloading and printing a paper form.

This is obviously not entertaining for anyone involved.

Meanwhile, one of the major problems facing this Congress is what to do with the massive Universal Service  Fund (USF), which was originally meant to keep the copper phone network working in rural areas. Those areas are pretty well served now. But there is still lots of cash flowing into USF. You pay for it on your mobile phone bill. On your landline bill. On your VOIP bill. Look. It’s there.

Some of that goes to schools and libraries, allowing them to get subsidized broadband service under a program called E-Rate.

Should that extend to public housing?

Some Members of Congress simply want to gut the fund. Is that a good idea?

Ultimately, this will be a question between Congress and the FCC. But here’s another problem. The FCC needs 3 votes to get anything done. as soon as the Senate adjourns, one Commissioner (Deborah Tate) will no longer be a Commissioner, becuase her term will have expired. That means we’ll have a 2-2 FCC. Gridlock.

Congress wants to get done by mid September so they can campaign. Will they get something done? Or will there be gridlock?

Where should that money go? Is broadband service “entertainment,” or your cable as important as your phone now?