Saturday, September 04, 2010
Friday, September 03, 2010
Every once in awhile I realize that there are things my kids take for granted that I don't.
Like cell phones.
Central Air Conditioning.
Okay, I've always had indoor plumbing as did my parents.
What about my future grandkids. Will Facebook and You Tube be around?
I guess we better take a look at You Tube's history while we still know what it is!
From the Basic Marketing Blog:
The Rise of YouTube
Many people simply can’t imagine a time without YouTube, but the fact is that this video-sharing site has only been in existence since early 2005. In just a few short years, YouTube has gone from newcomer to dominator. In the realm of video-sharing, few sites can even come close to matching YouTube. Like its parent company Google, YouTube dominates on the web.
YouTube was designed to be a place where people are free to upload content. Much of the content that is loaded onto YouTube’s website is material from copyrighted television and movie programs. This aspect of the site has received a great deal of attention. However, copyrighted material is far from being the only type of content on YouTube. In fact, the scope and variety of content that is showcased on this website is nothing short of staggering. This is due, in part, to the fact that YouTube is available in fourteen different languages.
People are using YouTube for everything from promoting their own products and video blogging to showcasing their independent films and animations. YouTube is even used by major media outlets and news organizations to promote their content. By 2008, YouTube had agreements with companies such as CBS and Lions Gate Entertainment where television shows and films could legally be posted to the site. As of 2010, YouTube has formed over 10,000 content partners in total from around the world.
YouTube was developed and launched by former PayPal employees Steve Chen, Chad Hurley and Jawed Karim. Chen and Karim were both from a computer science background and developed the site in response to problems they had experienced involving sharing videos over the web. Interestingly, Steve Chen was also one of the first employees at Facebook, but left the company to pursue his YouTube plans. Chad Hurley was instrumental in the creation of the company’s logo.
The real breakthrough for YouTube and its young founders came in late 2005, when they were able to secure over $11 million in funding from Sequoia Capital. Sequoia Capital is the same venture capital fund that has played a role in numerous Internet start-ups, including PayPal and LinkedIn.
After several months of work, YouTube officially launched a beta site in May of 2005. The rate of growth for the site was nothing short of phenomenal. Within just one year, YouTube was experiencing an impressive 100 million videos being viewed each day. Even while it was still a new website, the potential of YouTube was clear to many people. Mashable.com wrote an article in 2005 entitled, “YouTube-The King of Video Sharing?” Quoting Nathan Weinberg of Inside Google, Mashable stated, “YouTube has moved ahead of Google Video in terms of popularity…But its not just Google-these guys have moved ahead of everybody!” Even in 2005, industry insiders realized that Google was going to be the dominant player in video searches and video downloads.
Part of what makes the YouTube story such a fascinating one is how website grew with such unprecedented speed. By 2006, it was a dominant player in the video download game. In October 2006, Internet giant Google acquired YouTube for a whopping $1.65 billion dollars, which was paid in Google stock.
With the help of Google, YouTube has found yet more growth. By 2010, a remarkable two billion videos are served each and every day. In fact, the amount of content that YouTube has at its disposal is likely to play a significant role in the development of Google TV.
There are many video-sharing sites on the web, but YouTube quickly managed to distinguish itself. Part of what makes YouTube somewhat unique is this wide spectrum of diversity. Today, YouTube is used for just about every reason imaginable. You can quickly find videos from media giants like CBS or children’s piano recitals for grandparents and relatives to watch worldwide.
YouTube also began providing a method through which users could profit from their videos. As of 2007, YouTube has allowed users to place advertisements in and around the videos they upload. The money from these ads is then split between YouTube and the user. In 2008, Brian Stelter at The New York Times wrote an article entitled, “YouTube Videos Pull in Real Money.” This article explains how people are able to make a living through adding advertising to the YouTube videos they produce. Buckey writes, “One year after YouTube, the online video powerhouse, invited members to become ‘partners’ and added advertising to their videos, the most successful users are earning six-figure incomes from the website.”
Of course, the site has not been without its controversy. On one level, the site has been attacked for not doing enough to combat copyright infringement on the site. The issue of copyright on YouTube, of course, reached a fevered pitch when Viacom sued YouTube. Not surprisingly, this resulted in a very messy legal battle.
Google, the parent company of YouTube, even went so far as to state that Viacom had uploaded large volumes of its own content on purpose. Wired Magazine covered this issue in a March 18th, 2010 article called “Accusations Fly in Viacom, YouTube Copyright Flight.” The article includes a quote from Google stating, “’Viacom alone has uploaded thousands of videos to YouTube to market hundreds of its programs and movies, including many that are works in suite,’ Google wrote. ‘Given the broad scope of marketing, YouTube could not be charged with knowledge of infringement merely because it came across a video that was clearly from a professionally produced television show or movie.”
Yet this is only one aspect of the legal problems that YouTube has faced. Several countries, including China and Pakistan, have shut down the site for a variety of political reasons. However despite its problems, YouTube has grown seemingly unabated.
YouTube realized the high-definition would be an important aspect of the site, and with this fact in mind has slowly moved the site in this direction. In November 2008, 720p HD was added as an option for videos and full 1080p quality was added about one year later. By 2009, some 3D content was made available as well.
YouTube Becomes Dominant
As of 2010, YouTube held an Alexa ranking of 3rd of all sites on the Internet. Part of this success stems from the sites incredible 23 page views per visitor. YouTube visitors average about twenty minutes on the site per visit. These incredible numbers are further amplified when one considers that YouTube’s parent company is Google, whose Alexa ranking is number one. Thus, with the acquisition of YouTube, Google effectively gained the spot of both number one and number three of all Internet web destinations.
Few sites have ever experienced the rate of growth that YouTube has experienced and continues to experience to this day. Today, billions of videos are watched daily on the site, and there seems to be no stopping YouTube’s growth. The simple fact is that YouTube has become a vital part of many people’s lives. The site is truly nothing short of a global phenomenon. In recent years, YouTube has been taking serious steps towards monetizing the site, and there is little doubt that parent company Google will likely earn back far more than it initially invested.
Thursday, September 02, 2010
Wednesday, September 01, 2010
How to Firmly Say No Without Coming Off Like a Jerk
We’ve talked a lot about the Nice Guy Syndrome here on AoM. You know the guy. Big time people pleaser, always puts others before himself, lets people walk all over him. Heck, maybe you’re that guy. These so-called Nice Guys might appear happy on the outside, but on the inside they’re feeling burnout, resentful, and depressed.
One trap that a lot of “Nice Guys” fall into is always saying “Yes!” to every request that comes their way. These “yes men” are afraid that people will stop liking them if they say no. By saying yes to everything, the Nice Guy piles on the obligations and deadlines to his already busy schedule. He ends up spreading himself so thin that he can’t even fulfill the obligations he said yes to in the first place, which in a sadly funny, yet totally predictable turn of events causes people to resent Mr. Nice Guy- the very result Mr. Nice Guy was trying to avoid by saying yes in the first place!
A man firmly sets his core values, goals, and priorities, makes time to tend to them, and says no to things that conflict with what’s important. He doesn’t lose sight of the best, by pursuing the endless opportunities for the merely good.
What Nice Guys don’t realize is that it’s possible to have this kind of backbone and be able to say no while maintaining positive relationships with others. In fact, it’s even possible to say no to people and leave them thinking you’re a pretty swell guy.
If you’ve been having trouble saying no to people, we’ve provided some pointers on how to do it without coming off as a cad.
Don’t make the no personal. Instead of making it seem like you’re saying no because you don’t like the person, think their cause is crazy, or their parties are boring, just let them know you’re simply “following the rules.” By this I mean that your pre-set personal rules prohibit you from saying yes.
- “I can’t come to the Polka Festival on Monday night because Monday night is always family night for us.”
- “I can’t donate to your charity. We’ve made a decision to set aside our charitable dollars for our church and the Red Cross.”
- “I appreciate the invite, but I don’t date women with more than eleven cats.”
Let them know you wish you could say yes. Letting someone know you sympathize with their request, but still can’t grant it, will soften the blow of the no.
- “I would have loved to hire you-you’ve got just the right personality for the position. But HR has an internal candidate who’ve they’ve already pegged for the job.”
- “It would have been a great honor to speak at your convention. I’ve enjoyed attending it every year and have always been impressed with the presentations. But I’ve just got too much on my plate at this time.”
Show them that you thought it over before saying no. Feeling like you’re getting the brush off can be just as hurtful as hearing “no.” Show the person that you took the time to understand their request before turning it down.
- “This was a very entertaining screenplay. I really like how in the third scene the man-eating robot and the platypus become friends. But the studio is really concentrating on romantic comedies at this time.”
Offer a “consolation prize.” If you can’t fully grant someone’s request, think of a way you can still do something to help out.
- “I can’t referee at the game, but I will donate a keg for the after celebration.”
- “I can’t come on the Scout trip, but I can volunteer at the Pinewood Derby this year.”
Show them that your “no” is really in their best interest. You can take some of the sting out of your no by showing the person that having you on board wouldn’t have worked out anyway.
- Your newsletter is always so topnotch. Even if I could have found time to crank out some articles for you, they wouldn’t have met the standard of quality you are known for.”
- Even if I had chaperoned the all-night lock-in, I probably would have fallen asleep, leaving some kid to shoot his eye out with an airsoft gun.”
Say no by helping the person say no to himself. Web designers, barbers, and other creatives understand the frustration of having clients request something they know will simply not look good or turn out well. But if you say no outright, the client may become angry and defensive. Instead, ask them about their goals and then kindly show them why their suggestion wouldn’t help them achieve it.
- “If you’re going for a simple, modern look on your webpage, then all these rainbows and unicorns in the background would distract from that. Let me show you some examples that may be more of what you’re looking for.”
- “You’ve got a chin that makes Jay Leno look like Paul Giamatti. That haircut would only make it look even bigger.”
Let them know what it would take to get a “yes.” Don’t make the situation seem hopeless if it’s not.
- “I can’t give you an A on this paper. But you’re almost there. Next time, include a stronger thesis statement and more supporting evidence and your grade will definitely improve.”
Expose holes in their request. If someone comes to you with an idea that’s never going to go anywhere no matter who they talk to or how they tweak it, it does him no good to sugarcoat your no. But a “Get out of here, nutso!” isn’t the way to go either. Instead, ask them some questions that gently expose the holes in their plan. Help them see for themselves how untenable their idea is; you’re doing them a service.
- “Okay, and who would be the target market for a chest hair toupee?”
Just say no. It turns out that DARE was right-sometimes you just need to “say no.” If someone is wasting your time and doesn’t respect you, there’s no need soften your denial. Tell them no and walk away.
A final note. While these pointers will help you soften the blow of a no, they should not be said with any equivocation or hemming and hawing. While remaining polite and warm, you must also be firm and confident. Say your piece and let that be that. Don’t let someone guilt you into doing something by making you feel bad about your decision. There’s no pride to be had in saying yes, even to good causes, simply because you’re too afraid to say no. But you will find self-respect in making decisions that are in line with core values and priorities, regardless of what others think of you.
What are your tips for saying no politely but firmly? Share your advice with us in the comments!
- How to Break in a Baseball Glove
- 30 Days to a Better Man Day 30: Get a Straight Razor Shave
- The Art Of Manliness Weekly Roundup: There Will Be Blood Edition
- Check out The Manival #6 At Building Camelot
- Check out The Manival #7 at The Simple Marriage Project
Tuesday, August 31, 2010
Tech tips for the non-technical folks:
Think yours is foolproof?
Try this site: http://howsecureismypassword.net/
It estimates how long it would take to break or crack your password.
I tested a few old passwords that I used to use.
1. 30 seconds
2. 13 minutes
3. 3 days
And one of my current favs:
4. 38 days
Now 38 days is pretty darn good.
One of the keys to having a good password is that it is one that you will remember, but others won't be able to guess.
So I came up with a new one, which looks like it would be perfect:
Monday, August 30, 2010
Here's some tips from DLM to get out of it:
Posted: 10 Aug 2009 06:42 AM PDTMotivation is a tough thing, especially if you're in the midst of some difficult circumstances. If you're at all like me, and things aren't going the way you planned, you might have a tendency to fall into a funk. Instead of conquering the world, you might just want to put on some pajama pants, crack open some Ben and Jerry's, and watch TV.
This is a poor solution to your problems.
Seriously, sitting around isn't going to solve anything. You'll end up feeling worse about your situation the less you do about it. And, if you keep up with the B & J, you'll end up with a weight problem, too.
So, how do you motivate yourself if you're not feeling motivated? I think the feelings are key to understanding the root challenge. You're not always going to feel like doing something. You have to lead your emotions, not let your emotions lead you. Take one or more of these 8 eight concrete steps to inject some purpose into your situation.
- Let Fear Take Hold
Fear is one of the strongest motivators we have. The "fight or flight" response is dependent on feeling fear as its source. So, let fear work for you. If you're genuinely concerned about what's going to happen now that you've lost your job, and you don't know where the money is coming from to pay the rent, you're going to do whatever needs to be done. Issues that seemed to be obstacles before are going to fade to the background.
- Keep the Finish Line In Sight
A lot of folks have a tendency to look at the next step, rather than the big picture. While this technique has its merits, it's important to look up at the finish line occasionally. If you don't, and you're constantly focused on the day-to-day minutiae, you'll eventually wonder why it is that you're doing what you're doing. It's important to remember the payoff, because that's what got you excited in the first place.
- Make It a Game
This one works wonders with little kids! If your goal is to clean up toys before bedtime, you parents know that it's often beneficial to race your kids to see who can pick up the most toys in the shortest amount of time. The same thing works with yourself. If you're training for a marathon, you can continually try to improve on your overall time, or your split times, or whatever. Find ways to measure yourself, and constantly try to set personal bests.
- Remove All Other Options
Hernán Cortés landed in Mexico in 1519 in order to secure lands for the Spanish crown. One of his first orders to his men was to burn the ships that they had arrived on. This was to remove any thoughts of retreat from their minds. When things were going poorly, the men didn't have the option of thinking, "well, we can always go home". This is a scary step, but sometimes it's the only one that will work. For a person who wants to work for themselves, even if they have developed a substantial business on the side of their full-time employment, quitting that secure day job is a "burn the ships" moment. There isn't anything to fall back on, and they have to succeed.
- Tell Someone Else
If you have a goal you want to reach, don't keep it to yourself. Be sure to share it with people you respect. Once you've publicly acknowledged it, it becomes harder to give it up. You've made a verbal contract in a sense with people whose opinion you care about. If you were to give up on your dream, you would lose face with them. Most folks don't want this to happen, but because they're scared of failure, they keep their dream to themselves. However, if you want to succeed, you'll tell as many people as you can.
- Tell Yourself Daily
Make an affirmation to yourself about your goal. For those of you who aren't familiar with the concept of daily affirmations, it goes a little something like this. You write down a sentence or two that specifically details what it is you're going to achieve. You need to make it specific, and you need to keep it short. Then, just before going to bed, first thing when you wake up, and at various set points during the day, you read your affirmation aloud to yourself.
This sounds a bit hokey to some, but it serves to keep your mind focused on what it is you're working toward. It keeps your mind on the task at hand, even when there are many other things that are demanding your attention.
- Recruit a Group
In the course of telling people around you about your goal, you may run into a few of them that are excited about what you're doing. They may be so excited that they want to do something like it. If you talk to enough people, you'll find some that have goals just like you. You can take the initiative to lead these folks into a group that supports each other in reaching each of your destinations.
By having an accountability group, you put yourself in a situation where you're not only afraid of losing face with the other members, but you also have people available to provide ideas and brainstorm ways to keep going when you get stuck. It's amazing the things that members of an accountability group can accomplish together.
- Break It Up
While I said that you need to keep your eye on the prize back up in step #2, there's nothing wrong with breaking up your big, huge, audacious goal into smaller goals along the way. If your goal is so big that it scares you, or you worry about not being able to achieve it no matter how hard you try or how many people you tell about it, this may be a good tip for you. Just break it up into chunks. The sub-goals you set for yourself should still be something you can be proud of on their own, but they should also advance you toward the main objective. By taking things in smaller doses, you won't get easily frustrated.
|Written on 8/10/2009 by Jason Barr. Jason writes at the personal development blog Start Being Your Best. Follow him on Twitter here, or grab a subscription to his blog.||Photo Credit: Leeni!|
Sunday, August 29, 2010
This post from the DLM Blog tackles one aspect:
Posted: 22 Aug 2010 08:32 AM PDT
I used to live my whole life without a clear sense of direction.
Everything was being paid for by my parents. The threat of getting murdered or ending up homeless couldn't put a dent in the confidence that my mother and father would always be there to protect me. I was happy and carefree.
I assumed that in the end we'd all remain together as one happy family.
Then in a blink of an eye, everything changed. My parents separated and divorce proceedings were underway. It shattered the rosy image of my future.
Questions swirled around in my head like a hundred angry piranhas dining on a rapidly shrinking carcass:
"With a broken family, where would we go? Were we going to be okay anymore? Without a father, where could I hope to end up?"
It seemed that although the fighting in my home had ceased, a war within my brain had just begun. I didn't know how much more I could handle.
But through all that uncertainty and pain, I realized the one thing that I was missing. The one thing that separated me from the people who were more confident in their futures:
They had more than just a destination. They had a direction.
Did you notice that as soon as my parents split apart, that the vision of my destination was destroyed? That never would have happened if I already had a direction for my life. When you only have a destination, you leave yourself to be unfocused. If something goes wrong in your life, you're destination is instantly derailed because of one unlucky occurrence.
Most people will say that as long as you know where you're going, you'll be more likely to get there. They'd be wrong.
The number one reason people are insecure is not that they don't know where they're going, but they just don't know how to get there.
You feel good when you make New Year's resolutions and set goals, but you end up feeling bad when you never follow through. What do you expect? Did you think saying, "I want to make more money this year", at the beginning of some random year was going to magically insert cash into your pockets?
Focus less on your destination and more on the direction. Less on the "where" and more on the "how do I get there?"
This advice alone will get rid of your insecurity and have you achieve more of your goals, but I'd to help you out a bit more. Here are three tips to get your direction right:
- Don't get direction and destination mixed up
When you make goals, you designate their value by what result it will bring. For example:
I want to be a famous doctor; the best in the world.
I want to go to Brazil, and learn Spanish and Portuguese to better communicate with the locals.
While these goals sound great on paper, they're not very practical. If you look closely, you'll see that these statements are just destinations. Instead of merely stating a destination to be achieved, you'll be better off using changing these goals into action steps, like so:
"I'm applying for medical school, where I intend to learn and network with some of the greatest medical professionals in the world."
"I'm practicing to be semi-fluent in Spanish so I can at least have some sort of foothold when I go to Brazil. I'm going to practice three times a week and have already starting saving up for the trip."
Practical application brings actual results.
- Choose the right incentives
Even if you have a direction in addition your destination, are you aligned with them? Is this where you want to go? What's your incentive for going this way?
You set the goal to make more money, but why do you actually want to make money? To buy the next overpriced Apple product or to travel to a new vacation spot? Whatever your answers, understand that you will never prevail if you do what you do for the sake of a cause you don't resonate with.
My parents wanted me to be a doctor (another one of my many destinations). I agreed because I wanted to make them happy. Unfortunately for them, I discovered that I just didn't find that career to be appealing. I chose instead to be an entrepreneur.
I chose my own direction.
- Don't be afraid to blaze a new trail
The time will come when you're fed up following paths you don't resonate with or doing work that doesn't matter. When this time does come, whether you're ready for it or not, be prepared to blaze a new direction all your own. Yes, I know—you'll hesitate because you'll either be:
- so scared to strike out on you're on that you'll remain where you are, or
- eventually screw up and feel miserable
Let's get this out of the way before you come to my blog complaining about it later... you will screw up if you go in a new direction. You're going to mess up a lot and it's going to feel really bad for a long time. You'll feel like giving up every chance you get.
But what makes those who choose their own path successful is they have the courage to stick it out, even when their situation starts to feel really dire. As long as your passion holds up and your confidence in your future remains sky high, nothing can actually stop you.
|Written on 8/22/2010 by John Anyasor. John is the author of HiLife2B, where he inspires you to do what you love and go beyond perspective. Download his free e-book, 101 Maxims to Break the Mold and Conquer Your World||Photo Credit: Juliana Coutinho|