Tag Archive | New York Times

Mobile plan brings free Facebook access to US mobile devices


Good news for Facebook’s 1.2 billion users!

For the first time, Americans will be able to access Facebook on their mobile devices without a mobile data plan. On Monday  T-Mobile, a mobile communications conglomerate, announced that GoSmart, (a T-Mobile subsidiary), would allow users to have free access to Facebook (and Facebook Messenger). The service is predominantly targeted to smartphones but it will also work on more basic devices known as “feature phones.”

For some time now, Facebook has been hoping to boost usage of their site for those who are unable to afford data plans.

Facebook has entered agreements with carriers in India, the Philippines and other developing countries for years. Such deals aim at increasing global internet access and providing widespread accessibility to websites such as Facebook and Wikipedia in low-income countries. However, the exact terms of the agreements with the companies remain unclear.

Chris Daniels, vice president of partnerships at Facebook, said

“Facebook’s mission is to give people the power to share and make the world more open and connected, and we’re delighted that GoSmart subscribers, many who don’t have data access, will be able to use Facebook for free.”

Increased Facebook availability could mean access to previously untappedby-social-media markets. For some time now Facebook has been an ideal platform to engage and reach your audiences. As the pool of Facbook users rapidly rises, one must closely examine if they are using the platform to its fullest; No better time than the present to confirm…

Sound Off: Does Facebook’s new partnerships effect how you look at the social media outlet?

“It’s not who you know, but who could you know.”

With political scandal on Twitter and cultural revolution on Facebook,  familiar concepts are redefined in “The Digital Age.” The resounding influence of social media is testament to the endless possibilities at our fingertips, substantive exemplars of an expansive and burgeoning array of new media.

Earlier this year Clay Shirkyinternet expert and author of Here Comes Everybody: The Power of Organizing Without Organizations , was featured on an episode of The Freakonomics Podcast called “Who Runs the Internet?

In this podcast, Shirky says, “60 percent of adults around the world are now connected to the same communications grid.” That’s roughly 3 billion connections around the world. The potential network of connections is astonishing and daunting. With some helpful guidance, even the most resisting Luddite can reap the benefits of expanding your contacts. 

So next time you are at a networking event, look around and think, “Who could I know?” Your next best professional connection could be standing by, ready to link up.

Link: NYTimes on print vs. eBook


English: A Picture of a eBook Español: Foto de...

English: A Picture of a eBook Español: Foto de eBook Беларуская: Фотаздымак электроннай кнігі Русский: Фотография электронной книги (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


This week the New York Times takes a look at print vs. eBook behaviors.

People are ditching eBooks for print, citing the “feeling of a print book…absorbing and pleasurable.” Researchers even proved that students who use print score higher on exams because of print’s “immersive experience” (as explained in The Allure of the Print Book)

On the flip side, technology companies are trying to develop apps that mimic the print experience while adding value. As outlined in Out of Print, Maybe, but Not out of Mind, the physical design of print books are limited. eBooks can include additional features, like built-in dictionaries.

These two articles bring up interesting points about the “experience” of reading.

  • What are the pros and cons of reading a eBook vs. a print version?
  • Is there really a difference between carrying a devise vs. a bounded bunch of paper?
  • What does the “immersive experience” really mean?

Read an interview with Gary Vaynerchuk and learn how to engage “5-minutes-more”

In this week’s technology section, NY Times profiled Gary Vaynerchuk.  Gary Vaynerchuk, of VaynerMedia, is a social media marketer and “self-promoter.”

He frequently uses Twitter to connect with current and prospective clients.  According to the interview, he challenged himself to publish 70 Tweets per day and accomplishes this by combining both response tweets and original musings.  Vaynerchuk also planned to interview 365 people in 365 days and post 3 essays per week on Medium.

These types of activities expose Vaynerchuk’s brand and company to a wide variety of ears.

Click here to view a slideshow that goes along with the profile.  Within these pictures, you can follow Vaynerchuk through his 16-hour day. constantly engaging with employees, clients, and others.

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With the workload of one’s university, research institution, or employer, it may seem impossible to follow Vaynerchuk’s lead.  But there may be a few small things you can do.

For example, try to spend a few minutes doing a little bit more.

Spend a few more minutes engaging with your Twitter followers.  Compose some tweets that mention colleagues.

Spend a few more minutes browsing through Hashtags: Vaynerchuk often uses Hashtags to find his audience so you can do the same.  Search for popular hashtags related to your Tweets and add them in.  Become familiar with how Hashtags are formatted.  This will help in the long run.

Spend a few more minutes talking to others.  Vaynerchuk decided to interview “anyone who asked.” Participate in a 5-minute conversation with someone new. Whether this person is a social media/technology-minded individual, a colleague from another department, or just a familiar person you see during your daily commute, you can always learn something new from those around you.  Every person enters a conversation with a different set of experiences and social constructs.  Talking to these unfamiliar individuals may expose you to a novel idea for self-promotion that you were unaware of.

Link: NYT on Twitter for the Twitter Illiterate

Image representing Twitter as depicted in Crun...

New York Times has some very informative tech articles for all levels of expertise.

This week, read an article entitled “Twitter Illiterate? Mastering the @BC’s.” Tech writer Hanna Ingber (@HannaIngber) shares some tips to follow when you start a Twitter account.

The article is broken into 7 sections:

  1. Set up an account
  2. Build a community
  3. Learn the language
  4. Understand the symbols
  5. Tweet like a person
  6. Organize your feed
  7. Tell others

It is very easy to understand and Ingber offers explanations and examples along the way.

Be sure to read the full article, linked above.  There are many helpful tips and some links to prominent feeds like  @CoryBooker, the New Jersey Senator and Newark Mayor who is well-known for connecting with constituents via social media.

Using your Twitter bio smartly


Image representing Twitter as depicted in Crun...

Image via CrunchBase


This week’s New York Times Cultural Studies is quite relevant for authors.

The Twitter bio is a postmodern art form, an opportunity in 160 characters or fewer to cleverly synopsize one’s professional and personal accomplishments, along with a carefully edited non sequitur or two. It lets the famous and the anonymous, athletes and accountants, surreal Dadaists and suburban dads alike demonstrate that they are special snowflakes with Wes Anderson-worthy quirks.

– From Twitter Bios and What They Really Say

The article points out the Twitter bio behaviors of famous people (“The more famous one is, the less the need for straightforwardness,” as the article bluntly states).  One must strike a delicate balance between self-promotion and sincerity.  

Example:See Lady Gaga’s capitalized imperative: “Buy my new single ‘Applause’ and pre-order my album ‘Artpop’ here now!”

Of course, this bio feeds into Lady Gaga’s public persona.  But if you are not the type to aggressively self promote, migrate these types of announcements to your individual Tweets.

Keep it simple.  If you try to say too much, the bio will probably just come out as confusing.  If you use a few key words (example: “author. scholar. father. boating enthusiast” for example) you will get your point across coherently.

Remember, bios can be updated whenever you desire.  So if you would like to a promote something, make sure the information is up to date.  No one likes to see old news from their Twitter friends.

Like the profile picture, the bio is another one of the “small details” of Twitter.  With the right wording, you can make this 160 character bio shine.

Link: New York Times special section on maths & science education

Image representing New York Times as depicted ...

Image via CrunchBase

During our survey, we found out that many of you are teachers in some capacity.  Whether it be at a college or university or other educational institution, there is a lot of interest in reading about the state of STEM education.

This past week, New York Times published a special section entitled Learning What Works.  It features a variety of articles rooted in maths and sciences education.

Here are some of the articles that may be of interest to you as authors and educators:

  • Young Students Against Bad Science:  Profiles of students who took a stand against teaching “bad science” like creationism and climate-change denial.
  • Standard-Barer in Evolution Fight: A profile of Eugenie C. Scott, who fights teaching creationism in schools.
  • Field-testing the Maths Apps: Software developers are trying to create educational apps that teach pre-schoolers Math and other important subjects.  This article outlines some of the apps being developed and tested.
  • Guesses and Hype Give Way to Data in Study of Education:  The Institute of Education Sciences, a little-known group at the Department of Education, is now collecting rigorous data from experimental curriculum and other pilot programs. The expanding research from a variety of sources and angles may lead to more definitive conclusions about what education techniques work and which ones do not.
  • Milestones in Science Education: A timeline of various developments in science education, all the way back to the 1800s.

Do you have any thoughts about the state of STEM education?  If so, reply in our comments section.