Saturday, December 5, 2009

Bravo David Taylor - Chicago Symphony Orchestra

The other day I shared a story of how people driving in Ohio weather handle a rough slippery road. It was a pretty funny story, especially if you are from Ohio and like our family and friends -- you would get it. It was because of that very story, when I shared with my cousin Cindy Taylor that I had blogged about her, one thing led to another ... and to this blog post today!

Thinking back to family reunions, Holidays with Grandma, it usually meant seeing all our cousins! We had the cousins Nagy and the brilliant, musically-not-challenged cousins Taylor! Wow, that Taylor family. No sibling rivalry there, but just a huge case of AH and AWESOME. You've kind of already heard of one of the cousins, Cindy. Oh, she was quite remarkable on that piano -- I'll have to ask her if she is still performing as I don't know this bit of information and it is a shame. It is a shame that you can move to another part of the country and lose valuable contact with your cousins.

david taylor violinist with sister cindy taylorSo, here I am today telling you about a Bravo moment with my cousin David Taylor! Oh, how I so remember the holidays when we would all get together. We liked going to visit the Taylors because David would play his violin for us. Wow! I am smiling now with the moment of nostalgia. Fast forward to yesterday. I opted to do a SquidWho lens on Who is David Taylor! Yeah. I don't think as of this writing that he or Cindy have reviewed it, but I am hoping to spice and spruce the lens up with some valuable insight and cool content as only Cindy and David can share after all those years of playing that violin -- probably a Stradivarius or two too!

This is my moment of pause and consternation for David! You must, simply must, visit Who is David Taylor and check out the YouTube video of him in performance as the violin soloist with Ho Chung Yeh, Conductor of the National Taiwan Symphony Orchestra at the International String Music Festival. The performance is of the Beethoven Violin Concerto.

Please set aside not quite ten minutes to enjoy David's performance. And, please pay close attention to ALL the action in the first three minutes and twenty seconds. This is my question! Have you seen similar performances of the Beethoven Violin Concerto with a violin solo? Is this NORMAL? That the violin soloist would -- have to do what David does? Stand in front of that orchestra awaiting his moment? Why is there not a chair in which he can sit comfortably until it is his time to play? I don't know, it didn't quite seem right to me. Please tell me what YOU think! And, thank you for dropping in to check out David Taylor -- he is brilliant and I do hope if you are in the Chicago, Illinois area that you do get a chance to see him perform.

David Taylor not only plays the violin quite brilliantly, but he is also the Assistant Concertmaster of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.

Monday, November 30, 2009

The Power of Squidoo - Check THIS Traffic

If you Squidoo, you are very familiar with lensrank and people talking about all the traffic to their Squidoo lenses. But, do you really know who the top traffic lensmasters are? Or which lenses actually GET the MOST traffic? Yes, there is the Top 100, but that is really not a list of the top traffic lenses. The Top 100 is a topic for another discussion or two.

Today I want to take a moment to recognize that we have just passed the Thanksgiving holiday and survived Black Friday ... only to be hit with Cyber Monday. I had a fellow lensmaster share with me an article about the myth of Cyber Monday. It is a myth to me because I am not the typical shopper. Yes I shop like crazy online and have been doing so for some ten years. But, I don't save my shopping for Black Friday or Cyber Monday -- I shop every day of the year if I want or need something.

So, thinking of Cyber Monday, I decided to check a particular lens on Squidaholic.com. Wow, I am blown away by the huge traffic that fellow lensmaster flowski is getting for a 7-day period on his lens, Top 10 Best Christmas Gift Ideas 2009. I thought that traffic was pretty huge the other day when it was showing over 92,000 unique visitors for a 7-day period. But, today, it is sporting over 117,800 unique visitors. Now folks, that is traffic!!! Congratulations to Brandon on this wonderful success with the huge traffic. "Brandon "flowski" has been a member since August 18 2006, has rated 2,586 lenses, favorited 443, and has created 120 lenses from scratch."

Top 10 Best Christmas Gift Ideas 2009
I have a similar lens Best Christmas Presents for Gifting that was created on November 29, 2007 -- a two year old lens. But, I would wager a guess that my lens has probably NOT had 117,800 unique visitors in its two-year life span!

You know, when you have had a number 1 lens on Squidoo, it is a blessed experience. I've been there just once with Stuffed Cabbage -- this is the ONE lens out of my more than 593 lenses which means the world to me. In it I celebrate my grandmother Julia Nagy and the fond memories of Holidays with Grandma. So, having had a number 1 lens, I get lots and lots of emails which have questions about getting to that number 1 spot. A recent question from a lensmaster asked if 10,000 was a lot of traffic or normal for that number 1 spot. My answer was something like, "well a number 1 lens should surely have that amount of traffic." What about Brandon's lens? Oh, it is ONLY at number 14. Gosh, doesn't quite seem right does it? I would think traffic over 117,800 would guarantee that number 1 lensrank!

Doing my research for this blog post about traffic, I check many lenses in the Top 100. I could find no other lens approaching flowski's high traffic lens. In fact, I found many a lens well under 1,000 in 7-day unique visitors. There was a lens that passed 50,000 in 7-day unique visitors for traffic, yet that lens appeared to get no higher than maybe 40 or so in lensrank! I've seen another lens with over 15,000 traffic in one-day, and that lens was near the bottom of the Top 100. Yet, there are two additional lenses that come to mind with high one-day traffic on topicable topics -- the Presidential Vote Poll and Kevin Skinner -- those lensmasters achieved a Number 1 lensrank for their lenses.

So, how do lenses with high traffic get to the top spot? How do we as regular lensmasters even know when theses lenses have such wonderful successes with the traffic and the Google love? Recently, thefluffanutta got my attention with a Twitter tweet about the top lensmasters list that he provides us through SquidUtils.com. That made me ask, what about a list of the top traffic lenses? Wouldn't that be an interesting list to see? I know I'd love to see it.

Happy Cyber Monday to all my loyal readers, friends, buddies, chums! Have a great day.

About Me:
JaguarJulie has been a member since March 21 2006, has rated 6,298 lenses, favorited 488, and has created 593 lenses from scratch.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Travels of The Journal of The Traveling Squid

The Travels of The Journal of The Traveling Squid - New Trip! Thanks to all the wonderful lensmasters who have participated in the goodwill, charity project connecting lensmasters and giant squids worldwide. The Journal of the Traveling Squid. Who could have predicted what a remarkable journey the traveling squid would enjoy. It has been nearly 10 months since the traveling squid kicked off its journey -- starting in the U.K. After 6 months touring there, volume II was kicked off to U.S.A. lensmasters. The U.S.A. edition is currently touring California.

The topic of today's blog post is the "travels" of The Journal of the Traveling Squid. As you might know, the traveling squid is currently in Ireland in the trusty and capable hands of lensmaster Spook aka Kevin Moor. Kevin has shared with me his idea to take the traveling squid on the road with him when he starts his travels in December 2009.

Kevin has planned his travels to include Bangkok, Thailand; Canberra, Australia; Auckland, New Zealand; and Blenheim, South Island.

Sign Up: We are looking for lensmasters in these locations who would like to participate in The Journal of the Traveling Squid project. Kevin has been gracious enough to volunteer to meet with lensmasters in these locations. Sign up if your would like to be included by location:
  • Bangkok, Thailand
  • Canberra, Australia
  • Auckland, New Zealand
If you are interested and live in those locations, we will arrange details with you personally. We know that there are some lensmasters located in Thailand, Australia, and New Zealand and think this would be a great chance to meet another lensmaster and participate in the traveling squid project. We hope that you will consider this opportunity -- please let us know that you are interested! Thank you.

About me: JaguarJulie is a Squidoo lensmaster who has been a member since March 21 2006, has rated 6,243 lenses, favorited 496, and has created 586 lenses from scratch. GIANT Squid 100, Squid Angel, Lens of the Day Lenses, Jaguar Julie Lensography, and of course I Love Stuffed Cabbage.

Are you a writer, an expert or an authority? Join JaguarJulie on Squidoo and write about your passions, hobbies, and interests. P.S. I am now on HubPages - Julie Ann Brady!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Protocol and Promotion Personal Commentary

Pardon me as I do a definition search for the word "protocol." Let's see, I'm checking out Merriam-Webster:
a detailed plan of a scientific or medical experiment, treatment, or procedure
Nope, not that definition.
a code prescribing strict adherence to correct etiquette and precedence
OK, I'll go with this one.

I was a Squidoo Squid Angel for the first time, well over a year ago, for a term of six months. Thankfully, I was granted my "wings" so to speak for my second term just recently. It is because I am a Squid Angel that I am talking about my take on "protocol and promotion." This is my take, my personal commentary.

I, along with my fellow angels -- 32 of us! -- are tasked with certain daily responsibilities, which I take seriously and conscientiously. On any given day, I am busy reviewing and visiting hundreds of lenses. As of this writing, I have rated nearly 6,200 lensmasters' lenses. That sounds like a lot; but you know there are some lensmasters with much more than that under their belts! It takes a lot of time and thought to do that many ratings/visits. Oh, I'm not even taking into account those lenses that I've visited that are not ready for ratings -- don't know if I would be up to 9,000 lenses or more, but I suspect so.

Well, the personal commentary part is this. Since I am a Squid Angel, as in my previous term, I find myself less and less wanting to send a Squidcast or post in the forum to encourage visits to my lenses. I don't know why, call me funny [yes I know I need more humor in my lenses]; but I've scaled back on that kind of 'self-promotion.' I've scaled way way back on my twitter tweets too. I've got some new followers and don't want to flood them out.

So, what about YOU? Are you a Squid Angel too and have a take on this? Are you doing the same amount of promotion nowadays as previously? Or, have you too scaled back in certain areas.

Because I am Squid Angeling, much of my extra time [if there was such an animal] is now occupied with those duties and leaving me with not enough time for my blogging. When I'm blogging, I love this form of expression. Note to self, "make more time for blogging."

Did I say angel? What it means to be a Squidoo Squid Angel -- Blessings to you, my dear!

Monday, November 2, 2009

A quiet angel - silence is golden

A quiet angel - silence is golden sometimes. To most Squidoo lensmasters, the mention of the word angel conjures up squid angels. There are many a lens written by squid angels usually, and sometimes about squid angels who have come a calling to a lensmaster's lens and blessed it. But what about ALL those squid angels out there who are not trumpeting their blessings to lensmasters' deserving lenses?

I've held off on this discussion as there have been plenty of SquidU Forum posts about angels dropping by to bless numbers of lenses. And, there have been many a lensmaster asking for angels' blessings. I personally have taken the stand to NOT announce each and every one of my blessings.

Blessings to You My Dear has been my signature blessing from when I first earned my wings -- and I was more inclined in the early days to state that I had blessed a lens. But, in my new capacity, I've become a quiet angel. For the most part, I will definitely leave a comment on a lens along with my rating. But, I am blessing lenses in silence -- not trumpeting in the lensmasters' guestbooks that I have been there.

Oh, did I mention that sometimes I come upon a lens without a guestbook? Oh dear me. Please lensmasters, be sure to include a guestbook on your lenses. ;)

Back when there were only a few squid angels on the job, it seemed more worthy to make mention that a blessing had been left. However, today, on any given day, you can come across lenses with multiple angels blessings being apparent from the guestbook comments and many lensmasters who have been Touched by an Angel -- a plug for a related lens of mine.

Squid Angel -- Blessings to YOU! is my signature Squid Angel lens that talks about what I look for in a blessing-worthy lens ... in case you wanted to know this. ;)

I believe in angels, both earthly and heavenly. I've written a number of angel-themed articles and lenses. I believe that I am guided each day by my guardian angels, my two grandmothers who art in heaven. Not to worry that I've gone off the deep end ... just yet.

The Art of Angels -- celebrates the beauty of art and the beauty of angels in art. The Art of Cupid -- there is beauty in love and in cupid that is quite angelic. CloudWorks Angels -- are one of my favorite line of angels which make great gifts that bring a little heaven in each angel. Christmas Angel Globes -- looking for great Christmas gifts; think angels in snowglobes and waterglobes. William-Adolphe Bouguereau -- Angel Art -- some of the most incredible angel art prints.

P.S. Blessings to YOU, My Dear! See you around.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

An integral element to every lens - guestbook

An integral element to every lens should be the guestbook. When selecting the building blocks or modules that I like to have for my Squidoo lenses, there are a number of modules that are signature to the lenses I create. The guestbook is perhaps one of the most integral elements to every lens. That is my opinion that I know I share with many lensmasters. I have many a time contacted a lensmaster to suggest that they might want to consider adding that guestbook.

I used to think that there was nothing lonelier than an empty guestbook with no reader comments. You know, after over 3.5 years authoring lenses, I have stumbled upon some of my lenses whose guestbooks stand empty! Gosh, that is so unfortunate that not one visitor took time to say hello. So, what is lonelier than an empty guestbook? Why, it would be a lens with NO guestbook included. I can't tell you how important that guestbook is to invite in your reader to share their thoughts.

Think about this: when was the last time you attended say a wedding? Remember that guestbook that the bride and groom had to capture the memories of their blessed day?

jaguarjulie empty squidoo guestbook

That's a picture of a lonely guestbook, but it is from a new lens and has yet to experience its first visitor -- hopefully the reader likes to leave comments in guestbooks. New lenses awaiting guestbook comments: Bodum Glassware -- Award-Winning Design and Luigi Bormioli Glassware -- Designed in Italy.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

One of the rock stars of Squidoo

One of the rock stars of Squidoo -- a tribute by another lensmaster! I am surely not the first to blog about the Topicability of Squid Angels at Squidoo. But I do want to mention something you probably already know, a new group of Squid Angels were given their wings recently. Many a new lensmaster got outfitted for those feathery wings. It was a good thing to see so many of the male persuasion joining us of the female persuasion. I'm someone who likes a little balance to my daily life, and I will turn to a man to get his take. Oh oh, don't throw tomatoes anyone! It's just a matter of Yin and Yang or a bit of "He Said, She Said" to even it all out. Men sometimes can sum up the situation in an objective manner for us women.

Oh my -- I must apologize for going off on that tangent. It happens, tangents, when you don't blog every day, but some young hound dog has gotten me thinking. There is value in blogging daily. Think of it as mental therapy -- a chance to get a load off your er chest and perhaps connect with a new reader. Or, delight your existing readers.

So, where was I? Oh, yeah! One of the rock stars of Squidoo -- a tribute by another lensmaster! I was just getting into my second official day of Squid Angel duties -- to visit new lenses -- when I spotted this lens by Heather426, Holley RocketMom. It was time to stop and do a blog post!

Holley Adams is a Georgia peach and a rock star on Squidoo. I've blogged about Holley previously, Friends, Buddies, Chums and Then Someone Quite Special and am including that blog link as you can't get enough goodness in one blog post. Holley aka 24websurf joined Squidoo on July 18, 2008. That's a bit over a year. I'm not sure when I first met Holley, but it is thanks to Squidoo. Holley is a Giant Squid and a Squid Angel.

So, are you already a lensmaster at Squidoo? If yes, be sure to take a moment to check out Holley and the beautiful tribute lens by Heather. What's that? You are NOT a Squidoo lensmaster yet? Well, what are you waiting for -- hey, come and join me on Squidoo and start writing about your passions and interests. Need some help? I've mentored and helped many a lensmaster and Giant Squid at Squidoo. Check out my profile for a list of my interests. I'm JaguarJulie in case you didn't know.

Hey, we can use more rock stars ya know!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Twitter Twitter Everywhere - love Twitter

Twitter Twitter Twitter! Twitter Twitter Everywhere! Don't you just love Twitter? Wow, what did we do before this social media phenomenal platform became available to us? Coincidentally and topicably, I was just getting ready to pen a short positive blog post this morning for Topicability and what do I hear? I hear Hoda and Kathie Lee chatting in my ear about Twitter and what if you Twitter something you don't want to Twitter?

Oh, yes! I've seen Twitter members think they are sending a DM and then announce something that shouldn't have been sent to the general public, to their followers! Oh dear what to do about that? Once you've sent a public tweet and you really shouldn't have tweeted a private personal message? Gosh, you sure could lose a couple of followers that way -- it could be viewed as a 'betrayal of trust' after all -- a simple mistake and it mushrooms.

So, looking at what I receive from Twitter when I earn a new follower [oh brave soul thy are!] I have chosen the name of newloyalfollower as an anonymous name to protect the innocent -- at this time, there is NO twitter user by this name.
newloyalfollower (newloyalfollower) is now following your tweets on Twitter.

A little information about newloyalfollower:
1234 followers
654 tweets
following 1678 people

You may follow newloyalfollower as well by clicking on the "follow" button on their profile. You may also block newloyalfollower if you don't want them to follow you.

newloyalfollower may not appear in your follower list. newloyalfollower may have decided to stop following you, or the account may have been suspended for a Terms of Service violation.
I think it is great that Twitter sends me email notifications of my followers. What's funny though is that I have had several spam and porn followers that I see following me from time to time, but I don't get emailed notifications about them -- they just seem to pop up in my followers list -- Why is that? Perhaps if these type of twitter users would focus on the positive, they would be more successful online?

What seems like it might stand some improvement is the wording, "You may also block newloyalfollower if you don't want them to follow you. newloyalfollower may not appear in your follower list. newloyalfollower may have decided to stop following you, or the account may have been suspended for a Terms of Service violation." I can block my newloyalfollower; my newloyalfollower though might have decided to stop following me already! Or, my newloyalfollower might already be suspended.

I don't know, my head is full of my day job at the moment and I'm taking a break to pen this thought. That wording in that email sounds wrong to me -- it sounds like a Twitter Etiquette treatment is needed. Do you agree? Maybe you don't!

I write a lot about Twitter, both here on the Topicability Blog and also on Squidoo. How Often Should You Send a Twitter Update debates the frequency of your twitter updates. Twitter vs. Tattoo -- Which is MORE Popular? further debates the popularity of these two topics as traffic-getting lenses on Squidoo.

Exploring the best of tweets on Twitter, I have a number of TwitterList lenses:
  • Best of Guy Kawasaki on Twitter
  • Best of JaguarJulie on Twitter
  • Stuffed Cabbage * on Twitter
  • Brands in Public on Twitter
Bringing it full circle, alas on those days that Twitter Twitter Twitter Everywhere is NOT everywhere -- Life Interrupted -- Yours, Mine and Ours! It's a day without Twitter you all.

P.S. Got some time on your hands and feel the need to write and express yourself? Hey, join me on Squidoo! Get busy and express yourself.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Hey let your hair down

Hey let your hair down once in a while! Sometimes it is good to let your hair down once in a while -- that is an expression meant that sometimes you should express yourself in the vernacular to let your fellow writers, friends, buddies, chums and pals know a little more about you in an appropriate setting. What the heck am I talking about?

Ah, it would be a new forum thread that was recently opened up called Squids Gone Wild on the SquidU Forum. Normally, I am quite a serious lensmaster -- at least that's what my hubby is always saying. He is always encouraging me to laugh more! Yes indeed, I kid you not. Growing up and attending Catholic school put the fear of God and the nuns into me way back in my formative years. You know you had to be careful or the nun would bring you up to the front of the class to whack your knuckles with a ruler. The really 'bad' ones got the paddle in the back room. Oh, and sometimes you got to stay after class and help dear sister clean the blackboards!

Whew, thanks for stimulating that moment of deja vu and nostalgia. So, nothing terribly profound today -- no new etiquette post -- I'll leave that to the experts as I think I've scared away my readers with my take on etiquette. ;)

Let's think of something fun today. So, when was the last time you let your hair down? Care to tell me about it? Something topicable -- Trick or Treat? Hey, Halloween is around the corner -- what say you? What is your stance on Trick or Treat?

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

A book report on the topic of lensrank

Lensrank has long been a topic that has hit the Topicability Index. Much has been discussed on the SquidU Forum with regards to lensrank:
  • how to get a lens into the top tier
  • how to keep it there
  • squid angels' blessings and lensrank
  • purple stars effect on lensrank
  • falling lensrank
  • bottom-feeders of lensrank -- those lenses that seem to fall even out of the last tier which has a 85,000 lensrank cut-off currently
Well, today a lens came into the Topicability radar in that the lens is another lensmaster's take on an existing lens that I happened to author. They are both SquidLit book review lenses! How appropriate for us to discuss this book report on the topic of lensrank don't you think? It also compares something old vs. something new. And, might also show the impact of Squid Angel blessings too!

First of all, back in January 2009, I purchased Julie & Julia at our local Borders store. Hubby and I were in the store looking for some other books, but when I spotted the cover and title of Julie and Julia, I was hooked. You see I am Julie and my grandmother is Julia! Get it? I always wanted to cook just like my grandma Julia Nagy. So, it was my hook!

Lens #1 -- Julie and Julia -- The Book by lensmaster JaguarJulie.
Created: January 2, 2009
Ranked: #277 in Books
Lensrank: #27,800 overall
Lens Rating: by 26 people
Favorites: 9
Total Traffic: 15 visits this week
Angels Blessings:
Guestbook: 9 comments
Poll #1: 18 votes
Poll #2: 9 votes
Duel: 8
Plexo #1: 34 votes

Lens #2 -- A Julie And Julia Book Review by Treasures-By-Brenda.
Created: September 20, 2009
Ranked: #826 in Arts
Lensrank: #15,791 overall
Lens Rating: by 9 people
Favorites: 3
Total Traffic: 8 visits this week
Angels Blessings: 5 visits by Squid Angels
Guestbook: 8 comments
Poll #1: 7 votes
Poll #2: 0 votes
Duel: 0

Saturday, September 19, 2009

A Twitter Etiquette Interview with GypsyOwl

A Twitter Etiquette Interview with Squidoo Lensmaster GypsyOwl. Topicability readers, today we continue on our discussions about Twitter and Twitter Etiquette with a very special interview with GypsyOwl aka Deborah Bryan. Topicability is providing this interview today to help those of us who might need a little help with our Twitter updates -- how to not flood Twitter; how to send meaningful Twitter updates; bottom line: what are some of the do's and don'ts of Twitter Etiquette?

GypsyOwl was selected after a rather extensive analysis of the Twitter Score for a number of Squidoo lensmasters using Twitter. According to the Twitter Score Report, GypsyOwl ranks at a 7.8 out of 10. Of all Squidoo lensmasters analyzed, GypsyOwl had the highest Twitter score! JaguarJulie ranked at a 7.3 out of 10. Quite a few though could be found with a Twitter score of under 3.0!

Deborah, thank you for taking time today to agree to this interview for Topicability. So, let's begin, shall we?

Q. How do you use Twitter in your daily life?
A. Twitter has several applications in my daily life.
  • It is a great way to stay connected with family, friends, and associates.
  • I use it to touch base with Team members during project development & deployment,
  • My clients use it to alert me to emails (since I use an email management strategy) so I will retrieve timely updates at un-scheduled times.
Q. How do you promote your Squidoo lenses through Twitter?
A. I have a variety of processes in place to promote my Squidoo lenses through Twitter. A couple of these include:
  • Posterous account - Auto Tweets to my SquidGypsyOwl Twitter profile. My Posterous account showcases many lensmaster's lenses. I submit a lens sighting (by email) to the account and have an auto post installed so it will post to my SquidGypsyOwl Twitter profile.
  • Direct Tweets - Through my GypsyOwl Twitter profile. Direct tweets are about 'sections' of a lens (the updated portion or the most popular section). For this I will create a tweet or click on the "twitter" icon near the section I want to promote on the lens and then revise the tweet.
Q. Do you promote your Squidoo referral link through Twitter?
A. Yes. When I have a promotion which requires registration on Squidoo to participate, I will incorporate the Squidoo Referral Link into the tweet. This is a convenience measure so people will not have to search around to find access to leave comments on the Squidoo site.
Q. Do you have some thoughts on best practices of Twitter?
A. Personally, I believe Twitter use can be best compared to a dinner party at a highly honored and respected friend’s house. You will want to engage, roam around the room, meet people, help people when you can, introduce people to each other, and build relationships. You will always be thinking about your friend and the general rules of conduct she embraces.
Q. What does Twitter Etiquette mean to you?
A. Twitter Etiquette is defined in many ways and interpreted in over 82 thousand different ways. Each user of the service has an opinion and realistically it would be impossible to align with all of these perspectives. Embracing the diversity is the most important aspect of the Twitterverse, which in essence is the reason Twitter, has become a central portal for International communications.
Q. Do you recommend using automated tweets?
A. Automated tweeting services can provide a variety of benefits and they can also be the failing force for users who do not moderate the usage. The following are my personal do’s and don’ts for automated tweets.

Do:
  • Set up an automated welcome message (DM). Ask your new follower to send you an @ message. Personally check each new follower (to limit spammers and “follow me - I’ll follow you” scams) and select to follow each one after you have reviewed their profile.
  • Send announcements (not about your blog, Squidoo, etc) that will be of interest to your followers. Use this to send 2-3 tweets during different times of a day (one day – two at the most) to ensure your announcement has been seen by a great deal of your followers.
  • Set up your #followfriday stream (if you participate) which will introduce your followers to a few people you recommend and include “why” you recommend them. Spread these out, hourly for example, over the day (Friday only).
  • Set up Tips about your niche and spread them out (once a day or twice a day).

Don’t
  • Self promote or include any links in the automated welcome message. Do not auto follow new followers (see “Do” section).
  • Automate self promotional messages, repetitive “read my stuff,” or what could be called “re-tweeting yourself.”
  • No need to include a links in your Tips, because if your followers want to find your website or blog they simply click on your Twitter name and find the link on your Twitter profile.
Q. What about what they say -- you are what you Tweet?
A. The most important thing to remember about Twitter is everyone is listening. It is easy to believe at times that there are only a handful of people seeing your tweets. But, the truth is they are being seen over and over again through various applications around the world. Each message finds its way into a time capsule which can be opened at any time by anyone anywhere in the world.
Q. Can you sum up how you think of Twitter?
A. Bottom line, it is really about building relationships. Are the majority of your followers developing respect for you and trust in your recommendations? Are you beginning to remember the names of the people behind the avatar? When you meet new people on Twitter and start to get to know them, do you think of someone else who would be a great recommendation for them?
Thank you GypsyOwl aka Deborah Bryan for your insight on Twitter Etiquette.
GypsyOwl on Twitter | SquidGypsyOwl on Twitter | GypsyOwl on Posterous | GypsyOwl is a Squidoo Lensmaster and Giant Squid 100 Club member. Deborah Bryan has been a member since February 19, 2007, has rated 767 lenses, favorited 792, and has created 163 lenses from scratch. Deborah Bryan donates their royalties to Covenant House.

More about the Author of Topicability, JaguarJulie:
JaguarJulie on Twitter | JaguarJulie Blog On and On | JaguarJulie on Posterous | JaguarJulie was a Squidoo Lensmaster and Giant Squid 100 Club member. JaguarJulie has been a member since March 21, 2006, has rated 5,305 lenses, favorited 510, and has created 489 lenses from scratch.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Thou shalt not flame - Forum Etiquette

Thou shalt not flame, harass, denigrate, spam, or malign -- Forum Etiquette! Have you been following along with the latest Topicability blog posts -- and then being sure to read ALL the comments.

When I was tackling the broad and worthy subject of Twitter Etiquette, I eluded to the fact that I would soon be tackling Forum Etiquette. Well, here I am sitting here working on this blog post a bit early. Why? Well, it is thanks to a fellow lensmaster Deb aka flowergardener. We got to know each other quite a while ago, but as life is -- we each have been very busy with the daily stresses and many sequence of events which take us away from the daily civility of conversations. But, that is not meant to indicate that we do NOT care what the other individual might be up to -- or what challenges they face -- we know that we all have to come to grip with life!

So, what was I saying about etiquette? Oh, I wanted to next talk about the rules of forum etiquette. At the moment, I will contain this etiquette lesson strictly to the Squidoo, Squidu Forum, as I am not yet active, on a daily basis, in other forums like maybe that Zazzle Forum. But, I'm sure I will be making my way there soon. So, as etiquette goes, forum etiquette should be universal in concept.

Today's topic gets a kick-start from flowergardener Deb in that she took time away from her busy morning to post quite a meaningful post in the Squidu Forum.

"I just looked up the stuff that was in our TOS: flame, harass, denigrate, spam, and malign. Here they are, pulled from google definition searches."
flame:
An Internet user typically generates a flame response to other posts or users posting on a site, and such a response is usually not constructive, does not clarify a discussion, and does not persuade others. Sometimes, flamers attempt to assert their authority, or establish a position of superiority over other users. Other times, a flamer is simply an individual who believes he or she carries the only valid opinion. This leads him or her to personally attack those who disagree. In some cases, flamers wish to upset and offend other members of the forum, in which case they can be called "trolls". Most often however, flamers are angry or insulting messages transmitted by people who have strong feelings about a subject.

harass:
To irritate or torment persistently. To wear out; exhaust. To impede and exhaust (an enemy) by repeated attacks or raids.

denigrate:
To speak damagingly of; criticize in a derogatory manner; sully; defame.
To denigrate someone's character.
To treat or represent as lacking in value or importance; belittle; disparage: to denigrate someone's contributions to a project.
To make black; blacken: rain clouds denigrating the sky.

spam:
we all should know what this is

malign:
To say unpleasant things about (someone or something), especially without reason.
To speak unfavorably about, traduce; drag through the mud.
Thank you flowergardener for taking time to look all these up. Yes, forum posters! Do you understand that thou shalt not flame, harass, denigrate, spam, or malign other forum posters? Heck, this is something that is a principle of social interactions. It applies elsewhere online AND in life.

So, let's think about this for a moment shall we? In our recent dealings online, can you say that you have observed these "not to do" principles? Can YOU?


Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Another Day of Business as Usual in the Twitter Flooding

Another Day of Business as Usual in the Twitter Flooding! Gosh, I would hate to go so far as to say clueless, but it surely seems some people are clueless with their incessant drowning of Twitter with the same tweets over and over and over again!

I am hoping to get past this topic and on to the positive examples of excellent Twitter users -- there are some fine examples amongst Squidoo lensmasters. Not to worry, we will be coming out of the darkness soon to showcase the shining examples.

But to return to that multiple twitter user/Squidoo lensmaster who also does multiple, duplicate posting on the forums. Do you know WHAT it 'sounds' like or 'looks' like with those machine guy, rapid fire tweets on the same links?

Here is session #1 converted into what they are saying:
Follow me on Squidoo, Read my Squidoo lens, Follow me on Squidoo, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Check out my store, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Follow me on Squidoo, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Follow me on Squidoo, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Follow me on Squidoo, Follow me on Squidoo, Read my Squidoo lens, Follow me on Squidoo, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Check out my store, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens!
And, here is their second session, through their second Twitter ID, for the same links, converted into what they are saying:
Follow me on Squidoo, Read my Squidoo lens, Follow me on Squidoo, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Follow me on Squidoo, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Follow me on Squidoo, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Follow me on Squidoo, Follow me on Squidoo, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens, Read my Squidoo lens
Do you get that? Does converting the repetitive tweets not zero in on the craziness of all that promotion? I don't know about you, but I might need to schedule me a lobotomy!

Saturday, September 5, 2009

A Case Study - The Flooding of Twitter

Today I am following up my previous Topicability blog post, A Lensmaster, Giant Squid and Twitter Etiquette, with a bit of a case study on using Twitter to make meaningful and engaging Twitter updates or tweets. For this case study, I have selected two Twitter users who will remain anonymous to protect their identities! It is an intentional coincidence that I have selected two Twitter IDs which happen to be multiple IDs for the same user.

The objective of any case study should be to show how to do something right; however, you sometimes have to point out the wrongs to make a point on how to do something right. Or, to show what not to do.

I've used an Excel spreadsheet to perform my Twitter tweet density analyses. I have used a "session" to analyze -- a session meaning a consecutive series of tweets at one sitting.

In the single session use of the one Twitter user, there were some 43 tweets. These tweets comprised 79.1% promoting Squidoo lenses, 16.3% with a Squidoo referral link, and the remainder for an online store. In the single session of the other Twitter user, there were some 35 tweets. These tweets comprised 82.9% promoting Squidoo lenses, 17.1% with a Squidoo referral link, and I don't believe any for an online store. The averages for these two users' sessions are 80.8% promoting Squidoo lenses, 16.7% with a Squidoo referral link, and 2.6% for an online store. The margin of error is probably less than 2%.

Do you remember what I blogged about yesterday; i.e. Chris Brogan's Twitter Etiquette? Let me repeat two of those points here:
  • Promoting others and talking with others is a great way to show your participation to the community.

  • Only blurting out your information and links doesn’t usually come off as friendly or community-minded.
Go ahead and revisit those numbers I've included: The averages for these two users' sessions are 80.8% promoting Squidoo lenses, 16.7% with a Squidoo referral link, and 2.6% for an online store. The margin of error is probably less than 2%. Ladies and gentlemen, neither Twitter user engaged any other member in these quick succession of tweets! Not only does this do a disservice to the Twitter followers following these two Twitter users, but it seriously floods Twitter with what is blatant self-promotion. And, it's virtually all Squidoo related! What in the world is this saying to other Twitter users when they see all this Squidoo Squidoo Squidoo stuff tweet after tweet after tweet.

Well, further analyses on the actual combination tweets showed some slight variation on some of the tweets -- nothing terribly major -- but some attempt was made to disquise the duplicate content. However, analyzing the tweets showed 16.7% for the same referral link. The density numbers for the other tweets were 3-4 minimum and higher. What that density number means is that the same lens is being promoted more than once in a single session -- and piggybacking off the second user for multiple tweets of a minimum 3-4 times. Some links exceeded the 3-4 times tweeted when combining the two sessions.

Has any of this analyses made sense? Do you get the point that I am making today? Twitter asks you "what are you doing" which is meant to encourage you to share and interact with your followers. I really don't think Twitter was intended to be a flooding marketing machine with machine gun, rapid fire tweets that clog people's in boxes. I seriously can't imagine any Twitter Power how-to book telling you to configure several dozen automatic tweets to promote the same content over and over again with multiple IDs. Do I dare say that this is not SPAM?

Friday, September 4, 2009

A Lensmaster, Giant Squid and Twitter Etiquette

This morning finds me reading a number of helpful blogs on proper Twitter Etiquette. It was a fellow, respected lensmaster and giant squid who suggested to me the other day that I write a lens:
... on how to spread out Tweets, use Tweeting services to spread them out, and write effective Tweets to get attention, rather than clog inboxes for only a few minutes once a day!
So, I happened upon A Brief and Informal Twitter Etiquette Guide by Chris Brogan. I have extracted a few of the tips that Chris offers us that I think are so worthy of pointing out today:
  • Promoting others and talking with others is a great way to show your participation to the community.
  • Only blurting out your information and links doesn’t usually come off as friendly or community-minded.
  • However, the more you can respond, the more people tend to stay with you and build relationships.
  • People might unfollow you if you tweet excessively.
  • It’s not polite to direct message people you don’t know well with your automated quiz results or similar.
Perhaps you have read my Squidoo lens, How Often Should You Send a Twitter Update? "Do you do one a day, one an hour, or one every few minutes? What is the acceptable number of updates -- is there such a thing?" What kind of twitter updates do you send? As a lensmaster, and more importantly, a Giant Squid, it is imperative that we observe a certain protocol with Twitter Etiquette.

Personally, I employ a balance to my Twitter updates. If I opt to update my 484 Squidoo lenses, it is in extreme moderation that I simply click the Twitter button that tells everyone that I updated my Squidoo lens. I've seen Twitter users who have sent only those tweets. Twitter isn't about Squidoo promotion you know -- moderation is key! Now that we have the special, interactive module pages for our reader content on lenses, it is a cool feature that you can send a Twitter update on that content. Again, in moderation!

If you are tweeting, "I just updated by Squidoo lens" over and over and over again, what is that going to say about Squidoo? If you noticed a Twitter "user" who doesn't engage their followers or friends through Twitter, but only opts to send Squidoo lenses over and over again, this blatant self-promotion will surely cast a unkind light on that lensmaster -- hopefully this lensmaster is not a Giant Squid!

Do you realize that there was a Google slap for spam a couple of years ago? Do you realize that Squidoo is filtering through lenses that are spammy to lock those? Do you realize that certain topics are now considered taboo on the Squidoo platform? For some lensmasters, as beauty is in the eye of the beholder, what is junk to one lensmaster may be considered a beautiful thing to another lensmaster. We are dealing with cultures worldwide, with different perceptions on what is right and wrong. I don't know that there has been an ISO Standard written on spam and junk -- sometimes there appears to be gray areas of interpretation.

Are you tweeting Squidoo, Squidoo, Squidoo over and over and over again? Like perhaps you are all excited about the opportunity to write about your passions and interests and make some royalties for your work, so you are shouting about that on Twitter -- over and over and over again? I've noticed lately, some Twitter users who are Squidoo lensmasters tweeting their Squidoo referral link a number of times. Sending your Squidoo referral link over and over again is really not a good thing. All good things are done in moderation.

Giant Squids have higher standards than lensmasters who are striving to achieve that honor. Sure, you've heard that you can create 50 QUALITY lenses and then apply to become a Giant Squid. However, there are certain responsibilities that come with that title of Giant Squid. Giant Squids are respectful not only of their fellow lensmasters, Squid Angels, Giant Squids, and Squidoo HQ, but they conduct themselves in a manner that would make others proud to know them. Giant Squids are a beacon of light for what is good at Squidoo. A beacon of light for what is good at Squidoo.

You may want to follow @chrisbrogan on Twitter because he offers sage advice for proper Twitter Etiquette as well as other valuable social media tips.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Everything is coming up just Tickety Boo

Ah yes, to us Squidoo lensmasters we probably FIRST got to know the expression about the Squidoo servers running tickety boo. But, for the majority of us lensmasters, do you really KNOW about that expression? It has been quite a while ago that I researched tickety boo through a Google search and to my delight, discovered The Old Wizard Tickety Boo, a book by Scott Morton. I was so enthralled by this magical book, that I blogged about it in JaguarJulie Blog On in March 2009. Then, after my blog post, I 'met' the author online and was delighted to see that he joined me on Squidoo on March 22, 2009.

Old Wizard Tickety BooThe internet can be a magical place, bringing people together worldwide. Scott opted to join The Journal of the Traveling Squid, the goodwill project connecting lensmasters and giant squids worldwide. On August 26, 2009, Scott and the Wizard Tickety Boo made their appearance in the traveling squid. Have you seen the photo journey of the traveling squid? It is pretty amazing to see where the traveling squid has been; to see all the wonderful lensmasters who have participated; to read their awesome journal entries. You will find the Wizard Tickety Boo not only in the journal, but also on the Giant Squid t-shirt. Thanks Scott, for sharing the wizard with us!

You can find Wizard and Author Scott Morton on Facebook, Zazzle, and on Squidoo as a lensmaster with some very cool lenses! Want that book? Get The Old Wizard Tickety Boo from Scott!

Friday, August 7, 2009

With All the Changes In Our Daily Life

With All the Changes In Our Daily Life, Oh My, If We Could Just OPT OUT! Hello my fellow lensmasters, friends, family, and countrymen. I've been rather lax, I know, on being topicable and frequent with my Topicability blog posts. You see, there has been SO much going on, that it has been a challenge to pick just one topic to write about. I don't want you to think that there has been nothing important for me to write about -- I've been seeing plenty of my friends and comrades doing a remarkable job of manning and womaning their blogs, so I was taking a back seat and waiting for my turn.

Well, today I would like to share something a little different. This is a true communication recently received. The names have been kept anonymous to protect those who want to opt out. Yes, I am big enough to admit that I too have wanted to opt out of some of those things that aren't much fun or that seem to put a drain on your energy and creativity. But that this would be that easy, eh? So, as you read this heartfelt plea, let me know if it touches a chord or if you echo much of the same sentiment.

I'd love to get your comments -- show this blog a little love. It surely could use YOUR love today! Peace!!!
Dear Friend,

Hoping you are well amidst all these unbelievable happenings in our beautiful country. However, due to my now sharing my email address, I am requesting all my relatives and friends to no longer forward any political messages ... I will only be accepting normal and funny and good stuff that doesn't reflect any political party ... one way or another. As a matter of fact, none in our huge family, want to discuss politics any longer, because of too much division ... and as a family we want to remain united and not have disagreements over matters that look like we won't have any say.

So, I hope you understand because I know you are a true patriot and an active person in your party, but we have decided not to email our political preferences, even tho I know you and I are on the same track. Also, life is just too short to spend getting upset as I find myself doing lately. Every time I turn on the news, my blood pressure goes up and at our age, we can't let anything happen because we are being told our health doesn't matter if we are not a contributing young member of society. So let us just live love and laugh and hope miracles will soon happen.

Love you dear beautiful people ... did I tell you you look fabulous dahling?

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Happy One Year Anniversary to Triiibes

A tribe, is a social group of humans connected by a shared system of values and organized for mutual care, defense, and survival beyond that which could be attained by a lone individual or family. -- Wikipedia
July 29, 2008 -- just one year ago today that something incredible was set into motion. Something of a first in that Seth Godin would be launching his next book, Tribes. Before that book would go live, a limited number of us were offered the opportunity to reserve a copy of that book and to then register for an additional opportunity to get in the Triiibes a community on Ning. Looking back on this experience, I am honored to have been a part of it all. There are some of the most remarkable people with whom I got to interact and help to do something I normally wouldn't do in my daily life.

I got the opportunity to think outside the box -- I have been changed -- I am not the same. And it is a good thing. Thank you all my co-Triiibes friends. Thank you Seth Godin.
Tribes, Godin says, can be within or outside a corporation, and almost everyone can be a leader; most are kept from realizing their potential by fear of criticism and fear of being wrong. Change isn't made by asking permission, Godin says. Change is made by asking forgiveness, later.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Google Trends would suggest a seasonality for Stuffed Cabbage

Google Trends would suggest a seasonality for Stuffed Cabbage? Have you checked out Google Trends to learn more about the topics about which you write? For me, one of my favorite topics is food and cooking. I think it is because of my Hungarian and Eastern European heritage that I love to cook with old world inspired recipes and to experiment with my own. You can always find me tweaking this or that recipe and coming up with my own secret ingredients to make that recipe special. Well, one of my all time favorite comfort foods, Stuffed Cabbage, is one of the foods that I write about lots! As they say, "you are what you eat," and I surely must be stuffed cabbage or a stuffed cabbage patch kid at heart. And, I do have a pretty good sense of humor.

Google Trends is a public web facility of Google Inc., about Google Search, that shows how often a particular search-term is entered relative to the total search-volume across various regions of the world, and in various languages. --According to Wikipedia.
Google offers some pretty amazing tools for us to help us in understanding the popularity of our topics -- you see Google is so much more than just a search engine. But, you probably already knew that if you are into that which is topicable or on the topicability index. So, stuffed cabbage is the topic for me and anytime I can find more scientific data to demonstrate the popularity of this comfort food, I am on it. I've been studying the Google Trends for the past several years, and what I find particularly interesting, is how the charted data is seemingly 'identical' for the years of 2006, 2007, and 2008. It would suggest a seasonality and consistency in the searching trends and popularity for stuffed cabbage.

Well, I decided to conduct some of my own scientific research through the employment of a reader poll, is stuffed cabbage a seasonal comfort food? Do you eat it during specific seasons of the year -- or do you eat it year around? Help support this scientific research and take some time to answer that poll. Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter, or year around -- when do you eat stuffed cabbage?

Oh, and why not check out Google Trends for your topic of interest? You might learn something new -- and if you do, please take a moment to tell me about it!


google trends for stuffed cabbage

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Traffic is Both Down and Up

The topicability index for today has stopped on traffic. Many lensmasters have spotted an anomaly with the traffic to their lenses reportedly not registering correctly. I've noticed that as well ... enough to stop and do this blog post.

It's not just one or two lenses that are off, but quite a few which raises a bit of a red flag. While it is difficult to analyze each and every lens when you have over 445 lenses; I have looked at some of my more popular lenses which have always gotten good traffic. It's odd to see so many different types of lenses being 'off' ... can this be attributed to the time of the year? For the most part, school is out for the Summer. Are less people on their computers? Are people going to other sites?

Many are saying that their lenses aren't getting the traffic to which they've grown accustomed.

On the other hand, I've noticed other traffic that is way up! For example, my inbox is flooded these days with the good [thank you my friends], the bad [bummer!], and the ugly -- those spammy emails! Traffic might be reporting as down to lenses, but traffic is up with the number of emails.

Looking through some of my stats, it was quite interesting to see that 96% of my visitors are new and unique! That's up considerably from the 77% or so of previous months. It's great to see that new readers are discovering the benefits of Squidoo. Now, we just need to sort out what's happening with those numbers!

P.S. I'd like to see some seasonality studies -- I'll report back when I find some. Meanwhile, I'm off to find the traffic. May the force be with you! And, if you haven't yet discovered the benefits of Squidoo, why not join me as a lensmaster and we can discover that traffic together!

Monday, June 8, 2009

Should I be a Squidoo lensmaster

Should I or shouldn't I be a Squidoo lensmaster? Today in his blog post, Seth Godin asks the question, "Why am I here?" Indeed! I'm not waxing philosophical when I say that I've recently been asking myself that question a lot! It's been a time of examining how my time is spent; whether it is making sense that I participate in some form or fashion online at certain social media sites. After all, a person can spread themselves a little thin by trying to keep active everywhere -- unless you are a Wonder Woman or a Superman or perhaps Guy Kawasaki who is one amazing guy -- especially on Twitter!

Just as Seth's blog post was quite topicable for me today, so was the blog post from the SAMBA blog. The latest post asked another resonating topicable question of What do you hear? That topicable question was also picked up on by ChefKeem when he asked, "Do You Know Who Is Talking About You On The Web?" The SAMBA blog suggested that we check out Social Mention which is an aggregator that collects information from a number of different social media sites.
In addition to listening to what people are saying about your brand, also listen what they are saying about your competition. It is not sneaky, but smart!
So what does that have to do with whether I should or shouldn't be a Squidoo lensmaster? Here, hear! When I was taking a hard look at my presence online, I was evaluating my presence at a number of social media sites. I took a particularly close look at two different activities: blogging and Squidooing. I've been blogging since December 2004 and on Squidoo since March 2006. There is a ratio of 2 to 1 when you compare the number of lenses I have authored to the number of blog posts I have penned. Squidoo has had me in its hold for over 3 years.

It is interesting to compare worldwide readership of blogs to Squidoo lenses. Here is a snapshot of readership -- the worldwide visitors -- from my Jaguar Julie :: Blog On and On ... blog:

jaguarjulie blog worlwide readership
For comparison purposes, here is a snapshot of the worldwide readership -- the worldwide visitors -- to my >445 Squidoo lenses:

jaguarjulie squidoo lensmaster worldwide readership
It's pretty obvious from the second snapshot that there is more cultural diversity in the readership for Squidoo lenses. The worldwide reach of Squidoo is quite phenomenal! When you author a quality Squidoo lens that has been optimized with rich, meaningful content and relevant keywords, your lens has an excellent opportunity of being indexed by a variety of search engines so that you can have a strong worldwide readership base. The icing on the cake is when you additionally promote your lens judiciously to social media platforms.

worldwide readership of jaguarjulie squidoo lenses vs her google blogLet's take a closer look at the top twenty countries for the worldwide readership comparing Squidoo lenses vs. a Google blog. Looking at the snapshot above, and comparing the list on the left with the list on the right, you see many of the same countries. In this example, the top three countries for both are the same -- the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom! Together, for lenses they account for 77% of the readership base; for the blog, 72%. For the most part, this would be what I expected to see without looking at the tangible evidence.

You know it would be interesting to have a snapshot of the membership base of Squidoo lensmasters to see how their percentages stack up against the readership base. Much has been said that more Squidoo lensmasters are of the female persuasion; many of which are work-at-home moms. I'm thinking that the greatest percentage of Squidoo lensmasters DO come from the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom!

OK, so back to the question, "Should I or shouldn't I be a Squidoo lensmaster?" If you are interested in having a worldwide reach that is quite phenomenal, I would say that the answer is a compelling YES! Do you have something that you are passionate about? Why not create a phenomenal lens to shout out to the world? Why not join me! I've invested many an hour writing about a number of things that I find interesting; looking to engage my readers -- my worldwide readership base.

And, now I'm looking to judiciously monitor my time by asking, "Why am I here?" and What do you hear? Can you hear me now?

Friday, May 15, 2009

The Topicability of the Top 100

It is the middle of May and the halfway of the month for determining average lensrank for May 2009. That helps to determine if lensmasters will have lenses in the top tier that might pay $10-$12 for that coveted spot. The second tier pays much less at $1.30. The third tier earns about what a simple click might earn $0.08. One year ago, there were not nearly as many Giant Squids as there are today clammering for a top spot. Also, one year ago, to be a Giant Squid 100 Club member, well you could probably count those members.

Today, there are so many Giant Squids that occasionally when I am making visits to lenses I encounter a Giant Squid that I have met for the first time! I find that so interesting as I thought I knew all the Giant Squids. For me, it is a little tougher to guess who exactly might be a Giant Squid 100 member -- but I'm thinking WE Giant Squid 100 Club members might be earning our own badge to sport on our profiles.

I'd vote for an orange badge as the giant badge is purple to match the purple star. Giant Squids earn a yellow star for their lenses once they achieve that distinction because of 50+ quality content lenses -- you can see that yellow star on the profile. The purple star is for a special lens that was 'judged' to be a Giant Squids' stellar lens. I've only got one of those so far for my Stuffed Cabbage lens -- now HUB!

jaguarjulie squidoo lensmaster profile
FYI, yesterday was a payday for Squidoo lensmasters. Some lensmasters have shared with other lensmasters how much they have earned in royalties for the month of March. I haven't shared my stats online but have kept them private. I've run a debate about how much of our stats should be public. It is my opinion that some things should be private. If I publicize that I have made $2,000 in one month on my The Journal of the Traveling Squid lens, I'm afraid that might encourage more journals to be traveling around the world ... or maybe not. ;) Or, it might encourage other lensmaster in the U.K., Europe, and the U.S.A. to jump on board the project! Yeah!!!

So, what about that topicability of the Top 100? Well, I am super thankful that I have ONE of those lenses in the Top 100 -- Yep, only one. But it is my most important lens because it celebrates my grandmother Julia Nagy, my Hungarian heritage, and pretty importantly what grandma taught me to make -- Stuffed Cabbage -- thank you grandma!

This morning, I took a look at the Top 100 and am thrilled to report that some of our fine lensmasters who are also GSOs, Giant Squids, Giant Squid 100 Club members, and Squid Angels have MORE than one lens in that coveted Top 100 spot! Wow -- isn't that amazing? I've added the number after the dear lensmasters' names to indicate how many Top 100 lenses they have today -- the middle of May. I'm not sure if any of these are a second ID for a Giant Squid which would skew the numbers for those with more than one lens in the Top 100.
  • a_willow
  • airabongco
  • aj2008 - 2
  • awelldressedbullet
  • bdkz - 3
  • boredofeducation
  • bruceeisner
  • Chadrew
  • chefkeem
  • Christene
  • Cinetech - 2
  • ClassyGals
  • Color_Expert
  • Comfortdoc
  • CoolFoto
  • Crystal_Booth
  • dagsmith
  • debnet
  • ekurit
  • Ener-G
  • enslavedbyfaeries - 2
  • Evelyn_Saenz
  • EverythingMouse
  • flowski
  • Frankster
  • Greekgeek - 4
  • GypsyPirate - 2
  • hmsweaver
  • JaguarJulie
  • Janet21
  • Janiece
  • Janusz
  • JimH
  • Jimmie
  • JJNW
  • Joan4
  • kab
  • KathrynDarden
  • katiyana
  • KimberlyDawnWells - 2
  • KimGiancaterino
  • KinHK
  • kiwisoutback
  • Kylyssa
  • LindaJM
  • luckycharms
  • Mac33
  • Marc_Sandford
  • MiaBellezza
  • MobyD
  • MrLewisSmile
  • mynameiskate
  • N376
  • Noadi - 2
  • OhMe
  • Pastiche - 2
  • Pixelrage
  • relache
  • rmoore
  • rms - 4
  • SemperFidelis
  • sewjr24
  • spirituality
  • Squidster - 2
  • Susan52
  • susannaduffy
  • SusanVillasLewis
  • tandemonimom
  • tdove
  • The_Health_Lady
  • thefluffanutta - 3
  • TheGreenerMe - 2
  • ThomasC - 2
  • Tipi
  • Treasures-By-Brenda
  • Victoria_Neely
  • x3xsolxdierx3x
  • xrayspecs
  • zuzanna
P.S. So, what are YOU waiting for? Are you a Squidoo member yet? Join me on Squidoo and start having as much FUN as I am having! Who knows, if you keep at it, you might just become a Giant Squid or a Giant Squid 100 Club members or even someday a Squid Angel. At the moment, I am a Squid Angel OTL -- out to lunch or retired, but hoping to earn those wings back so that I can bless lenses.

In closing, Blessings to YOU! That has been my tagline when I was a working Squid Angel. ;) Peace you all.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

The Topicability of the Purple Star

The topicability of the purple star ... in the titles of lenses. Well it was just another Wednesday morning for me until I ventured into the SquidU Forum to find that yikes, my Stuffed Cabbage lens was a hot topic of discussion in that a star symbol had been inserted into the title of the lens after the title of "Stuffed Cabbage."

stuffed cabbage google search


stuffed cabbage lens title with former star symbol
To help you determine how you would like to weigh in on the debate about showing special characters in lens titles, I have included a snapshot of the Stuffed Cabbage lens with the open shadowed star design that I currently employ on my twitter profile. Thus far, I have heard no comments one way or the other on the appearance of the stars on my twitter profile. So, I can't weigh in with the scientific evidence about that.

However, a few lensmasters have mentioned that browsers other than FireFox do not recognize this special shadowed open star! Hmmm -- must fix that!

stuffed cabbage lens title with an asterisk
OK -- so this snapshot above of my Stuffed Cabbage lens uses a special character star that I believe should image correctly in browsers other than FireFox. It doesn't quite have the impact of the other star and it is definitely not purple -- haven't figured that one out.

Well, the purple stars are being handed out now at a rate of 21 per week -- we will be close to one hundred lenses I think by the end of this week. I've got ONLY one purple star while there are lensmasters with 2 purple stars and quite possibly some of these lensmasters may earn a third purple star in the near future. I'm holding my breathe for a second one although I did NOT nominate any of my lenses this week.

So, what do you think? Like any of these stars in the titles? Actually, thinking about it ... I know I did happen to see a registration mark or a copyright mark on a lens title for a trademarked product. I think those special characters should be allowed to be used!

Friday, April 17, 2009

Rewarding Content - Unveiling the Purple Star

Rewarding Content - The Unveiling of the Purple Star. The PURPLE ONE has made its appearance at Squidoo! By 'purple one,' I am referring to the purple star that is now being rewarded to Giant Squids for their quality content lenses. These purple stars made their debut on April 16, 2009 -- oh, they had been around for quite some time, but officially just hit a handful of Giant Squid 100 Club lenses.

Jaguar Julie lens on Stuffed Cabbage earned a Squidoo Purple Star

Above is a screenshot of what that beautiful purple star looks like on a lens -- you can find the purple star next to the gold star under the lensmaster photo in the upper-right hand corner of the page. I love that my Stuffed Cabbage lens was tapped for my first purple star !

Jaguar Julie lensmaster profile sporting a Squidoo Purple Star

For those Giant Squid 100 Club members who have just earned their first purple star you can also see a purple star on their lensmaster profile. Check out mine!

The purple star program has now kicked into high gear! To find out more about what it takes to earn a purple star, be sure to visit this official Purple Star Program Lens lens which explains the program. At the moment it is only available to Giant Squids! So, I'd say that is an incentive to qualify as a Giant Squid!

Update: After my Stuffed Cabbage lens earned the purple star on April 16, 2009, it made it to the #1 spot overall on Squidoo on April 19th. As of May 18, 2009, it spent 24 days in the #1 spot; 6 days in the #2 spot. As of May 18th, it was one of 3 different lenses, each recently earning purple stars, to make it to the #1 spot. The Stuffed Cabbage lens, now HUB, had been experiencing excellent traffic for about 1-1/2 years, before it earned the purple star. It is open to debate whether any lens now occupying the #1 spot could achieve that lensrank without the benefit of the purple star !

Say, you're not yet on Squidoo? Hey, what are you waiting for -- here is your invitation!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

New Look to Squidoo Home Page - Like Alltop

I simply must go on vacation more often -- why you ask? Well, lots of things happen when I go away! It's rather like Murphy's Law.

Squidoo welcome page of Top 5
The first thing worth mentioning is that a whole new group of Squid Angels were chosen -- I missed out on the call as I had no internet access in Southern Spain; dog-gone it! The 'new' Squid Angels were chosen by invitation from Kimberly. I've asked that she put me on her list for the next go-around! Now, we have many returning Squid Angels doing second and third tours of duty; I'm thinking there are probably some doing a fourth tour of duty -- those lucky guys and gals!

The next really big thing that I noticed that was new was the super cool view of the Squidoo welcome page -- the home page. It gives an overall look at all the topics or categories within Squidoo by spotlighting the Top 5. I love this! Especially if I can make it into the Top 5 in any of the topics -- not an easy feat to do. Luckily, I seem to have hit on two of my lenses being spotlighted: Stuffed Cabbage and Meniscus Tear -- Not just a jock's injury! I think some lensmasters have several of their lenses showcased on this welcome page -- a hearty congrats to them!

P.S. Here is another view of Top Lenses from Squidoo -- it's Squidoorati @ Alltop.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Any Squidoo Lensmasters Living in the UK

The Journal of the Traveling Squid is a goodwill project of sisterhood and brotherhood, connecting Squidoo lensmasters worldwide. Through this project, we are looking to connect lensmasters worldwide. It is our mission that The Journal of the Traveling Squid will travel far and wide; that it will cover all continents. And, in our effort to pay it forward, it is our goal to raise money for charity at each step of the journey.

The Journal of the Traveling Squid
The Journal of the Traveling Squid departed from Jacksonville, FL on March 19, 2009 jetting to the U.K. JaguarJulie posted the package to Squidoo lensmaster and Giant Squid, Gordon Hamilton in the U.K.
  • Are you a Squidoo lensmaster living the U.K who would like to participate in this project?
  • Do you live outside the U.K and want to participate?
Learn much more about this project : The Journal of the Traveling Squid.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Celebrating 3 Years on a Social Platform

Celebrating 3 Years on a Social Platform - Not a Flash in the Pan! March 21, 2009 marks my third anniversary as a lensmaster on Squidoo. That is a pretty long time to be able to stay active on one social platform and not be a flash in the pan! Squidoo has been a remarkable place to BE -- I absolutely LOVE Squidoo. I originally came to Squidoo from a personal BzzAgent invitation. At BzzAgent, we learned to be word-of-mouth evangelists [not religious fanatics]; and we learned to spread the word or buzz about worthy topics.

Squidoo Love
During the past 3 years, I've authored over 404 lenses along with 6 groups. I became a Giant Squid and achieved the honors of Giant Squid 100 Club, rather a daunting achievement at the time as I experienced a crushing hard drive crash in the midst of qualification. HQ blessed me with the wonderful experience of being a Squid Angel -- putting me more in touch with my spiritual side. ;) Hard work and luck gave me 3 different lenses of the day or LOTD! Each of these LOTDs were very special lenses to me: To Catch a Thief in under 40 Days!, Jaguar Julie Lensography, and Julia Nagy -- My Grandmother, Namesake and Superhero.

So, are you celebrating a special anniversary on Squidoo, or have one coming up? I'd love to hear from you! Please take a moment to visit my signature lens, Jaguar Julie Lensography, and be sure to sign my guestbook to let me know you dropped by! Thank you and may the force be with you.

P.S. Want to join me on this wonderful platform? Hey, what are YOU waiting for! Get started now. Do you have a favorite food like stuffed cabbage or maybe basa? Have something to debate; e.g., blondes are sexier and have more fun? Experienced a sports injury like a meniscus tear and want to write about your personal experiences? Or, maybe you just want to remember your mom!

Friday, March 20, 2009

Do You Live in California - It Can Be Quite Taxing

Yesterday I received an email from Commission Junction with a very topical subject!
As you may already know, there are proposed California bills that could require the collection of sales tax for online purchases similar to bills proposed in other states and that could resemble the law that recently passed in New York State. At this time, a hearing date for AB 178 has been set for April 13, 2009. As with all laws, if passed, these laws may or may not apply to you and your business.

Commission Junction is headquartered in California and impacted by the current California budget crisis. Nevertheless, we are opposed to the recently proposed legislation and are working with a lobbyist and other groups in hopes that we can influence the rejection of the bills' passage. Rest assured, we recognize that our industry and many of our clients may be impacted by these bills.

The application of the bills is dependent on particular business and factual circumstances, and Commission Junction is not in a position to provide legal and tax advice regarding the bills. However, we encourage you to perform the appropriate due diligence as it relates to your business. You may be contacted by advertisers in the Commission Junction network as they perform their due diligence.

Additionally, following are two sources of information on the proposed California bills that you may find helpful:

http://democrats.assembly.ca.gov/members/a14/News_Room/Press/20090202AD14PR01.aspx

http://www.leginfo.ca.gov/bilinfo.html

If you feel that you need more counsel on the bills, we recommend you seek independent tax and legal advice.

Sincerely,
Commission Junction

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Search for Seth Godin and Squidoo on Searchme

This morning I got sidetracked a bit when I started checking out the Searchme.com search site. It's looking pretty cool -- I searched on Seth Godin and then Squidoo. The cascading stacks, like an open book pages, of results were very topical and spot-on for Seth Godin.

Searchme search for Seth Godin
The Squidoo search results were a little more well, eclectic -- and could seemingly use some type of organization. That's the cool part -- that you can control what search results, or mini stacks, you want to be in your saved search results.

Searchme stacks information

Check out Searchme.com and do your own search. Check out Jaguar Julie's Blog for a bit more information on Searchme.com.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Getting With the Green - Happy St. Patrick's Day

Are you Irish or feeling a little Irish today and feel like getting with the green -- have some green beer, green eggs, or corned beef and cabbage? Me? Well, "I'm Irish! I only look sweet and innocent!" Well, anyways just for today!

Another St. Patrick's Day has come and will soon be history -- at least in about another 6 hours Eastern Standard Time. Today, MobyD's cool lens, Celtic Music: Lenses was the Lens of the Day. For all previous LOTDs, be sure to check out the Lens of the Day Blog. The Today Show has been featuring Celtic music the past couple of days with Meredith and Al in Ireland. We've been a fan of this type of music and were recently able to see Riverdance locally.

Checking the topicability index for "green" today on Squidoo produced some 969 lenses! Wow, that's quite a few. A search on St. Patrick's Day produced some 313 lenses. A search for Blarney Stone produced only 8 lenses. And, I only found one lens specifically about the Blarney Stone!