6 Word Casualties Of Digital Culture That Need To Go Away NOW

This post originally appeared at Digital Pivot, the New Media E-Zine.

hqdefaultThis post, which will indict popular slang phrases currently permeating the American lexicon, is probably going to make me sound old. For the record, I’m in my early 30s, which is young, thank you very much. But depending on your vantage point, that might sound pretty ancient. I know when I was 18, imagining life at the age I am now felt like being in some Jetsonian futuristic 3D movie. And now I’m here, psyched about the 3D, yet bummed about the lack of flying vehicles.

Alas, I can’t hold back any longer. There’s an urgency tugging at my soul to address these blunt-force traumas to the English language in hopes that others will join me in resolving to never, EVER utter the phrases I’m about to eviscerate, save to completely ridicule them.

These phrases, I believe, are just some of the side effects of our highly digitized culture: When you’ve only got so many characters with which to say something, you’ve got to improvise. The result? Nails-on-chalkboard annoying words people say with seriousness.

Observe:

“Totes.” In my world, these are bags which you use to carry things. “Totes” also describes the action of carrying something along with you (“She totes her dog in a designer carrying case.”). To seemingly everyone else, “totes” is short for “totally.” Rest in peace, “-ally,” because apparently I can’t find one in the fight to end the practice of saying this ridiculous “word.”  Full disclosure: I used to say it jokingly, but have since stopped. Further, “totes” is funny, but only when James Earl Jones and Malcom McDowell say it.

“Cray.” This is the informal term for a crayfish in Australia and New Zealand. In America, it means “crazy,” which is exactly how I feel about the apparent inability to just exert a little more effort and make the stupid zigzag between the “a” and the “y,” you morons.

“Adorbs.” Nothing about this abbreviation is cute. Let me spill a little champagne for “-able,” which is not how I’d describe anyone OK with swapping four perfectly splendid little letters with an “s” in this instance. And might I point out, an “s” is basically a “z” backwards, yet we still have “cray.”

“Brills.” This describes multiple European flatfish. And anyone who’s actually “brilliant” and uses this term to describe anything other than European flatfish should take another IQ test.

“All the feels.” I first saw this on Imgur, in comments made on a particularly moving post. “Oh, the feels. All the feels.” What the f—? Now even “feelings” are abbreviated? Isn’t that the kind of thing that gets you into a lot of relationship trouble? Please, believe enough in your own feelings to actually use the entire word.

Gorg.” Beautiful people, let me clear this one up for you: A “gorg” is a mythical creature that hates fraggles because fraggles steal all of the radishes in their gardens. You’re welcome.

Probably one of the worst parts about this ridiculous trend in slang is that thanks to Twitter and texting and Snapchat, I could create a million more annoying words simply by lobbing off a letter or two—or worse, adding a “z” at the end. Call me cray—er, crazy—but suddenly I’m longing for the days when cool stuff was “rad” and “tubular” and pretty people were, well, just “fine.”

That’s just my opinion. Don’t wear it out.

The Real Social Media Magic Doesn’t Come From Brands

This post was originally published at Digital Pivot, the New Media E-Zine.

Pratik Dholakiva, co-founder & VP of marketing at E2M Solutions & OnlyDesign, wrote a piece for Jay Baer’s Convince & Convert blog that outlined some fascinating recent social media research. No doubt many more conclusions beyond those found by the researchers will be drawn from this information. The following is just one.

 When all is said and done, “social media” is a term that represents a collection of tools through which to communicate. The research outlined in the link above makes it pretty clear that real social media magic happens not within the compelling post from a brand itself, but within the conversation that ensues as a result.
It seems more people behind a brand will need to not only know those conversations are taking place, but also become a driving force behind them.
We’re evolving to a point where a branded social media presence must become only a small part of a larger digital conversation strategy. I wonder if people who engage with others on behalf of a brand (not to sell, but to inform) using their personal social media presences might not achieve a greater (and quicker!) impact than anything the branded accounts could ever hope to conjur.
This is especially relevant on Facebook, where business presences must pay for halfway decent exposure, and are penalized for using third-party content schedulers. Indeed, Facebook’s algorithms innately prefer a personal piece of content over one that comes from a business page.
Perhaps a day will come where more businesses might expect their employees to use their personal social media accounts for engaging people in conversations that lead to more business. Let’s just hope those people practice full disclosure.

Paying To Play On Facebook? Promoted Posts Are The Best Bet

I recently ended a more than two-year run as a lead blogger for TalentZoo.com’s Digital Pivot blog, where I wrote about social media, digital marketing and all things tech. Now I’d like to share some of my favorite posts originally published on the DP blog with you here.  Recently, the science video blog Veritasium diverted […]

Preach, Sigourney

You go, Sigourney. I love this quote. So much, in fact, that I had to dress it up and put it on my blog. You can read the entire interview actress Sigourney Weaver gave NPR here. 

Time for a reboot

I’ve been neglecting this blog, and it’s not right.

I could list the multitude of reasons why. But there’s one reason that trumps all others: This blog doesn’t inspire me anymore.

I am publicly resolving to change that.

Originally, I created this blog for professional reasons. I wanted a place where I could house my resume, provide links to my writing, and then blog about my professional passions, such as social media, in order to contribute thoughts to an online community that has taught me so much. Not to mention, I wanted to show I could regularly string multiple sentences together in a cohesive, helpful and hopefully entertaining manner.

I was fortunate enough to be named the lead blogger for Digital Pivot back in October of 2011. It’s a gig I thoroughly enjoy and would like to continue with for the foreseeable future. I’ve been re-blogging those posts here for a while.

And I think that’s been my mistake.

I’ve been thinking for a very long time now that I need a creative outlet. It’s time to stop thinking and start doing.

So, I’ll be revamping this blog in the coming weeks. I’ll still find a way to provide links to the Digital Pivot work, but those posts will stay exclusively on that blog, where they belong.

I’m pretty excited for the reboot. The hope is to pull an “Amazing Spider-man” and be unexpectedly better than the previous versions!

5 quick iPhone 4S secrets you might not know about

Just when you think you’ve learned all there is to know about that little rectangular device in your pocket… The iPhone 4S with the iOS5 operating system has quite a few little time and battery-saving tricks up its sleeve that I was rather happy to learn about. Observe: REALLY kill your apps. Turns out I […]

6 ways Facebook is like Bob Dylan

This post was originally published at http://www.digitalpivot.com. Yeah, I said it. Facebook is, in some ways, a lot like Bob Dylan.   Right now, some of you are probably saying…”huh?” Others are likely cursing me to an eternity of “500 miles” by The Proclaimers on infinite repeat.   Hear me out, curse-casters: First off, I’m […]

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