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Facebook Mentions – Lighting cigars with wads of brand Benjamins.

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Facebook MentionsWell, hai Faceook.. nice shiny news toys.. Facebook Messenger, Slingshot, Paper, Native Video being optimized and now Facebook Mentions… 

In case you haven’t heard of it, Facebook Creative Labs recently dropped their latest tool, the Facebook Mentions app “makes it easy for public figures to talk with their fans and each other on the go.” Hang on, I hear you say.. that’s what Twitter and Reddit are for.. yes, this is the latest in moves designed to keep social media users within the Facebook family.. buy Instagram, Facebook Paper for news, Slingshot to combat Snapchat, optimizing Native Video to draw advertising $$$ away from YouTube. It all makes sense right? I’m not convinced.

Celebrities, market need and the need for Facebook to have their fingers in every pie.

Now I’m not a celebrity (yet 😉 ), but I’ve been around the music industry for years and for me there’s two types of celebrities.. those who like to be seen schmoozing with other celebrities and sharing it with the world and those that like to be left alone or if connecting with other celebs, are not trapped up in making a big deal about it, so to me Facebook Mentions in it’s current format doesn’t make sense.

And what about Facebook’s perceived need for “world-domination” of all social media tools in the broader social media market?

We live in an ever-evolving technological age where consumers are spoilt for choice and each of us have our own little suite of social platforms that we use in varying frequencies depending on what drives and inspires us as an individual. Like my food and travel destinations I crave choice and variety in my social media; I enjoy Twitter for one-on-one connections with influencers, meeting every-day people I come across in the digital world whom I’ve never met who love similar things to me, friends and making new business contacts, Instagram as a photographer for daily inspiration/sharing and yes, even Pinterest has it’s place to occasionally inspire me and make me laugh when I’m struggling to get the day started and coffee just isn’t cutting the mustard. Like most of us. I want to at least “feel” like I have this choice and while Facebook Creative Labs is a cool initiative in theory, some of those smarts would surely be better utilised in improving Facebook’s user experience, as what Mark Zuckerberg & Co seem to fail to realise is you don’t need to own own every single human connection on social media. Sure, it’d be nice ($$$) and social innovation is certainly key, but you can’t be everything to everyone and when spread yourself thin over a 100 different opportunities invariably you open yourself up to falling flat on your face.

Last year I spoke with one of our top guys in Singapore about his philosophy on innovation and for his own personal development he endeavours to focus on 3 big projects a year and to do them well, nay, absolutely nail them. I come from a similar school of thought. In 2010, I burnt myself out working 12-14 hours a day 6 – 7 days a week managing 3 bands/singer-songwriters, working on a snowboard show on TV, building a business and flying around the country running various events, whilst trying to make ends meet. Now translate this to Facebook. For them it’s burning resource. It’s all very well to want to build creations designed to combat competitors and blow them out of the water with innovation, but creation’s just the first step. Once you’ve spent millions of dollars building a viable platform, to stay current and to continue to evolve, it’s necessary to continue pouring money into projects just to keep them relevant and competitive, which leaves two considerations – (a) The aforementioned market need and (b) Where’s this money coming from for development?

So my Advertising Dollars are funding this?

Yes, now comes the “fun” part. “Where’s the money coming from for your shiny new toys Facebook?” – mutter agencies, brand and marketing teams around the world. And yes, pure and simple. Brands are paying for it.

Working in social media I accept that part of my role is explaining to clients that the natural evolution of successful digital technologies into paid channels is nothing new (e.g. Google) and another reason why each brand’s social strategy should remain platform neutral and be tied to business objectives, rather than specific social platforms. But this? Uh uh.. in it’s current format and in an already saturated social media market I fail to see the necessity of Facebook Mentions and sure if it took off there may well be financial benefits in influencer/brand cross-promotions in the future, but they will be affordable for the few and when life’s already been made more challenging with the “death of Facebook Organic Reach” conversations, this is not helping.

I’ve been sitting here thinking you’ve been making some shrewd moves of late, Facebook, with your finger on the pulse and as always I’m happy to be proved wrong, but I’m concerned that this just smacks of an itchy trigger finger and you’re shooting blanks.

DW

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Dan Wilkinson works as a Manager, Marketing Strategy & Analysis – Social Media at SapientNitro Australia and is founder of music industry biz, Hot & Delicious Group.
Dan Wilkinson works as a Manager, Marketing Strategy & Analysis – Social Media at SapientNitro Australia and is founder of music industry biz, Hot & Delicious Group.

 

The Aussie trek to Gallipoli – ANZAC Day 85th Anniversary Gallipoli trip & podcast.

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ANZAC Cove

DOWNLOAD the PODCAST – #127 ANZAC Day – A trip to Gallipoli (Turkey) SOLOCAST. 

It’s 1am and I’m struggling for sleep, so I put the pen to page to release thoughts that have been burning a hole in my brain.. my journey to Turkey to experience ANZAC Day’s 85th anniversary on the Gelibolu (Gallipoli) Peninsula. This week I recorded a Bondi Beach Radio show and Hot & Delicious Rocks The Planet! podcast that I created around ANZAC Day, my trip to Turkey for the 85th anniversary of the dawn landing in Gallipoli and what April 25th means to me. Download it here.

On April 23rd my flight touched down in the beautiful city of Istanbul and we hit the road in the station wagon that was to be our home for the next few days. After a brief encounter with a Turkish policeman (clip-on koalas are great for avoiding speeding fines ;)), we arrived in Eceabat on the Gallipoli Peninsula, parked our “hotel” on a grassy lot across the road from Vegemite Bar and immersed ourselves in the local culture… ah, I mean drank copious amounts of 500ml Efes beer cans with other Aussies/Kiwis who’d made the trek to Turkey for ANZAC Day.

The next morning with dusty heads we headed off to the nearby ANZAC Cove and surrounding battlegrounds to learn about Australia’s first foray into war as a country in it’s own right. For the uninitiated, during World War 1 Allied forces were sent ashore at ANZAC Cove to capture the high-ground overlooking the Dardanelles, the strait of water connecting the Aegean and Black Seas. Securing the Gallipoli Peninsula would mean being able to protect Allied ships being sent to re-supply and support the Russians who were under heavy threat by advancing Turkish forces.

Map of Gallipoli

In the cold dark dawn of April 25th 1915, our Aussie diggers hit the beach below sheer cliffs which meant initially that less than a few hundred Turkish soldiers were required to hold their ground against thousands of ANZACs whilst the commander of the Ottoman forces, Mustafa Kemal, (later known as Atatürk, the founder of Turkey) mustered the Turkish 19th Division to contain the ANZAC troops.

If you’ve not had the privilege, the Gallipoli experience is one that is almost impossible to describe. After spending the day traveling around the various battle-zones, our crew headed down to ANZAC Cove at midnight along with thousands of other Australians, Turkish nationals and New Zealanders. Sitting there in the freezing cold night at the base of the cliffs at ANZAC Cove, I tried to imagine what it would have been like for the young Australian and New Zealand soldiers (many of them younger than 18) half a world away from their loved ones and home. Soaking up a mixture of emotions I recounted tales of World War 1 horror, acts of selfless bravery and thousands upon thousands of casualties on both sides. I was also struck by the tribute later made by Atatürk to those ANZACs who died in Gallipoli that is now inscribed on the Atatürk Memorial in Turakena Bay, Gallipoli:

“Heroes who shed their blood and lost their lives! You are now lying in the soil of a friendly country. Therefore rest in peace. There is no difference between the Johnnies and Mehmets to us where they lie side by side here in this country of ours. You, the mothers, who sent their sons from far away countries wipe away your tears; your sons are now lying in our bosom and are in peace. After having lost their lives on this land they have become our sons as well.”

All these emotions and a moving pre-dawn service on the crowded foreshore left a lump in my throat and tear in my eye. It is for this reason that every ANZAC Day no matter where in the world I am, rain, hail or shine, I rise in the early hours to attend the ANZAC Day Dawn Service.

Melbourne’s Shrine of Remembrance has been my port of call in recent years and to this day whenever I stand in silence for the Ode of Remembrance and the bugle call of The Last Post, the memories, goosebumps, lump and chills return.

It’s just impossible to fathom the sacrifice of our ANZACs both past & present.. but this is what ANZAC Day means to me… This is what it means to be Australian..

“At the going down of the sun and in the morning.. We will remember them.. Lest We Forget”

DOWNLOAD the PODCAST – #127 ANZAC Day – A trip to Gallipoli (Turkey) SOLOCAST. 

ANZAC Day 2013

DOWNLOAD the PODCAST – #127 ANZAC Day – A trip to Gallipoli (Turkey) SOLOCAST. 

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2 weeks ago I saw a request on @theright.fit influencer app to create content for @DefenceCare, their 2017 ANZAC Appeal and I immediately jumped right on the opportunity. The funds raised by donations to the ANZAC Appeal go directly to Australian service men and women with physical injuries and mental illnesses.
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Ever since my Turkey trip in 2001, I attend the ANZAC Day Dawn Service every year as I feel, regardless of your perspective on military service and war, that those past and present who have sacrificed their time and lives in the service of our country and way of life are to be championed, supported and adored.
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I’m wearing my ANZAC Appeal badge all weekend and if you too would like to make a small, but positive impact on the life of another person today, then head on over to http://www.anzacappeal.com.au to buy a pin or make a one-off donation.
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I’m also wearing my grandfather’s medals at the Melbourne Shrine of Remembrance ANZAC Day Dawn Service on Tuesday. I never knew him as he was tragically killed in an accident just 6 months after my parents got married in an accident 1968, but my dad tells me that I am a lot like my grandfather in appearance and personality, so finding his photo albums of his military service in the Middle East and Kokoda in World War II, seeing his service records and wearing his medals for the first time this year brings me closer to him and makes me happy.
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Be selfless and make someone else’s day today. Head on over to http://www.anzacappeal.com.au.

With thanks to:
Images by Victoria Bryce, Letisha Dall and Dan Wilkinson
http://www.anzacsite.gov.au/
http://chattours.com.au/
http://www.ataturktoday.com/

DOWNLOAD the PODCAST – #127 ANZAC Day – A trip to Gallipoli (Turkey) SOLOCAST. 

Jack Carty Exclusive Release recorded live at SXSW – “What Does Your Heart Say?”

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Jack Carty – Official SXSW Showcase
Stephen F’s Bar on Congress
Austin, Texas

“…shouldn’t you have that stirred?”

Stephen F’s Bar was dead silent, the crowd captivated by Australian singer/songwriter Jack Carty.
His song had reached it’s climax, when the silence was broken from behind the bar with one of the punters ordering a cheeky martini and subsequent vodka-shaken racket.

The rattle of the martini shaker was swiftly followed by  “…shouldn’t you have that stirred?”… Jack’s quick retort and easy, off-the-cuff banter what I’ve come to expect from the Sydney-based artist, both on stage and in person. Jack wowed his Austin audience with the light & colour of beautiful, ranging vocals and delicate guitars, which also featured a guest appearance from Hannah Shepherd (Emma Louise‘s talented keys player, vocalist and close family friend).

Having seen a number of performances live in LA and SXSW, I’ve fallen in love with Jack Carty’s music and so upon arriving back at the hotel room earlier in the evening to find him warming up for the show, my automatic 1st response was to capture the moment.

Jack Carty’s latest single with Casual Psychotic “What Does Your Heart Say” is the song we recorded and this moving impromptu rendition from a Texas hotel room is the first release from Jack’s latest ‘The Predictable Crisis of Modern Life’ – EP.

Jack recently completed a run of North American dates, released the new single in the USA and has just been on an Australian national tour, so I suggest if you haven’t seen him live already, that you get down to one of his shows stat. Immediately it will become clear why this lovely, talented and amiable guy has played alongside the likes of Josh Pyke, Matt Corby, Katie Noonan, Husky & more and featured at a bunch of Australian and international festivals including SXSW, Canadian Music Week, Woodford Festival, Peats Ridge and Playground Weekender.

Success could not come to a more deserving artist.

Enjoy..

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Jack Carty & Casual Psychotic‘s new track ‘What Does Your Heart Say?”

Jack Carty exclusive live acoustic performance from South-By-South-West (SXSW)

More images from Jack Carty’s Official SXSW Showcase here

Hot & Delicious: SXSW & LA. Roadtrip USA proudly supported by Panasonic Lumix G-series Cameras
LUMIX G-SERIES CAMERAS
Featured images shot with Lumix GH2 with 12-35mm / F2.8 lens, Lumix DMC-G5 with 20mm / F1.7 lens

Want to know more? jackcarty.com

Buy ‘The Predictable Crisis of Modern Life’ – EP

Jack Carty - SXSW