20.2.07

Snap Preview Anywhere Snap Back









A choice of 8 colors









Snap Preview Anywhere Badge


Snap Preview Anywhere
are back with a new version of their controversial pop-up widget that had spawned a vitriolic backlash from those who said they found it annoying, indiscriminate and "just a gimmick" for the company.

This time around, SPA have informed users that they have enhanced the user interface. They have incorporated new features that would allow the site owner to customize a link, image, css, etc.

Here are the five main reasons why SPA are snapping back:

  • You can now pick your own color theme. There are 8 colors to choose from.
  • You can add a logo to the Preview Bubble. According to SPA, your site is your brand. Now your preview can show your own logo, too.
  • You can choose a Snap Link Icon. This is a tiny bubble icon that appears next to a link to show that it has a Preview and Trigger to prevent accidental previews.
  • You can place a Snap Preview Anywhere Badge on your site to give your users the option to turn on previews.
  • Advanced options for advanced websites. You can implement as many as you like or none at all in one convenient interface.

For full details on all of the upgrades that have come to Snap Preview Anywhere, you can visit their FAQ page.

Making Changes To Your Site?

In an email to users and former users, SPA are also inviting website owners to "lend" them their sites to test "new cutting edge technologies." Well, I don't know. Would you?

If you think you need to crank up your website, maybe you can email your URL and contact information to guineapig@snap.com.

This is what they say: "Don't worry, we're professionals and we generally know what we're doing."




Why I Went AWOL

Sometimes, there are just too many things to handle and there's a tendency to fall behind. You know, like not posting on this blog for several days.

Well, there's a valid reason for that. I was working on a new blog preparing all the stuff before launching it. Not to mention that I came down with a bout of flu and had to go AWOL!

The new site is up. You'll find out why I needed another one if you care to hop over there for a look-see. It's not exactly perfect yet, but then perfection is, in my mind, a fallacy. We can only do the best we can.

10.2.07

It Takes Two To Tango...


...But when it comes to linking, two is just not on. If you have been reading up on linking, you need to be like Oliver Twist: Ask for more. Try to get more. Reach out for more...

Yes, the more the merrier and I've noticed that this linking craze has reached a "ludicrous level" where some bloggers are just sort of like ready to give an arm or a leg to get on the bandwagon. In other words, they are dying to see that green thingy appearing on their Google Page Rank.

It's fascinating that sometimes the hunger for links can cloud a blogger's rationale or judgment on whether he or she is doing something that is considered the right etiquette or not.

Take for example, this recent "LinkRoll" fad that spreads from one blog to another and thus creating a "chain letter" kind of reaction that continues to grow. You can see this on a number of blogs as the owners proudly show the list in their posts.

Would you join this "chain letter" group so that you can game the Google PageRank system? Is this another form of "social networking" -- like you scratch my back and I scratch yours? Or is it more akin to a "link farm"?

Is it Google's fault because they are now stressing on the importance of inbound links? They think this approach will benefit the quality websites. But what is a quality website? To Google, to you and to me?

It's always different folks, different strokes when it comes to meat and potatoes. Has Google ever considered whether this "LinkRoll" method an organic behaviour of blogs? White hat technique or black hat?

Everyone knows that to get good search rankings in Google, there must be links pointing to your website from other websites. Of course, webmasters can cook up different methods to build links. There's always more than one way to skin a cat.
If Google's intention is to create an ideal "democratic" world of search, it's not happening. The "best links are earned and given by choice" rhetoric doesn't ring true. Everything is only abstract. Does Google know and understand the heart of a blogger? No, unless the blog's owner spells out his/her intent clearly.

Surely, there must be a better way than what we are experiencing now.

7.2.07

New Perks And A Timely Warning

Wanna Be A New Postie And Get Paid? PayPerPost have widen the scope for post reviews with a new twist to their controversial program.

Posties can now place a "Get Paid To Review My Post" badge at the end of their posts. This is an invitation to new prospects to review your blog post.

What's the deal?

The wannabe clicks on the badge, signs up with PPP, and will be given a $7.50 opportunity to review, for example, this blog's post in his or her own blog. And you can imagine how it will spread from one postie blog to another! Not to mention the generation of multiple links back to your site with money earned for each link.

Oh, before I forget, once the new postie gets paid for reviewing your blog, you'll also be paid $7.50. Do I see a stampede soon after?

Eyes Wide Open On Links: If you're thinking of improving your search ranking, be very wary about buying links.

From Marketing Pilgrim comes this warning: Don't do it. In his posting, Andy Beal points out that search engines reserve the right to penalize you for it.

And if you want to know Google's stand, go to http://www.mattcutts.com/blog/text-links-and-pagerank/
. Also, link authority Eric Ward has warned against buying links. Check all this at the Marketing Pilgrim blog.

And Now, Digg This: The Digg folks have come out with an update to their "Digg This" button.

This new Digg button now has the brain "to detect whether your link is a Digg permalink or a URL and whether or not the content exists on Digg already. If it exists, you'll get the familiar yellow Digg box with a real-time Digg count to suggest visitors Digg your story. If the story doesn't exist yet on Digg, the first person to click on the Digg It link will be walked through the submission process."

You can check out all the details with samples on
http://digg.com/tools/integrate.


If You Got The Money, Honey, I Got The Time!

For most of us blogging peasants, when do we have all the time in the world for doing whatever we want to do? Time scheduling has always been the bane of most folks. They say a good blog must have postings everyday. Fine, if that's your bread and butter stuff and you got nothing else to worry about except just to keep on blogging.

But we do have to attend to other demanding and necessary tasks. Even as a freelance writer, I must manage my time and that includes quality time. Time is precious. Time is money. In fact, time is the most valuable asset anyone can have.

Now, how do you take control of your time, your goals, and your life...and enjoy blogging at the same time? Perhaps, you may want to check out this time management software called Achieve Planner. The company says it's got the smarts to keep track of everything you're working on.

I've checked out the puffs on its website. One aspect about the program that caught my attention is its ability to plan your ideal week by allocating time for different activity zones like health and fitness, finances, and family time.

If that works out as claimed, then this software tool, which features a wide range of functionality, may well be just the ticket to help you do less and accomplish more in whatever project you're on.




5.2.07

Grab It! Or Snap Out Of It!


One Man's Meat Is Another Man's Poison: Some people are snapping up Snap Preview Anywhere because they think this pop-up widget is cool and helpful. For others, they are snapping back because they think this gimmick is downright annoying or even a pain in the you-know-where.

Love It Or Hate It: Since it was made available to users sometime last year, Snap Preview Anywhere has, like PayPerPost,
come under some heavy artillery fire. But not without some defensive manoeuvre by those who see some benefits coming from it.

What's The Intended User Benefit?: Erik Wingren, head of Snap UX Research says:

"In a nutshell, our product is intended to enable users to 'look before leaping', saving many people a wasted click. I will, however, be the first to admit that this is a product that some people don't like, and this is why we have made sure to include a simple method to opt-out for those who don't like it (click the 'options' menu in the upper right of the preview bubble)."

Here are some gathered views on the pros and cons. You come to your own conclusion.

Snap Pros:

  • You can hover over links to make sure you type the URLs correctly.

  • You can quickly test for link rot in your blogroll and other links.

  • User can get a glimpse of where the link is at.

  • Not a gimmick but a step forward to a new service dimension for blog readers.

Snap Cons:

  • Annoying because when it hovers over a link its view is blocked by the pop-up.

  • Previewing functionality is indiscriminate. Every single link on the page gets this preview.

  • The technology loads more javascripts onto a page, affecting loading times.

  • It draws the eye away from the task at hand, causes annoyance and loss of concentration.

  • It's bling, a silly little shiney thing designed specifically to increase awareness of Snap.com.

    Well, to each his own. So where do you stand, folks?



1.2.07

Right On, Let's Get Populated At MyBlogLog!


You never know whom you'll meet in Blogosphere until, by chance or stealth, you bump into someone and discover you've found a new online friend. If both are similarly inclined towards, say, internet marketing and SEO, that would be cool.

MyBlogLog has been working overtime since Yahoo! acquired it. There has been a flurry of activities on this social networking site with more and more sign-ups coming on board each day than you can shake a thumbdrive at!

I see there's a scramble to be "in" at MyBlogLog. Correct me if I'm wrong in my perception. The other observation is that there's a more matured crowd here than say, StumbleUpon. Do we need to mention MySpace? And don't say you haven't seen some notable blogs or familiar faces at MyBlogLog.

Sheesh, this place is getting populated!

There's a powerful current flowing through this neighbourhood. If you had read "The Long Tail" then you'll begin to see a good example here where "amateur blogs are sharing attention with mainstream media."




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