Wednesday, December 31, 2008

You made it to 2009! Keep going!

Instead of a resolution, why not take a look back at what you accomplished? Change or adjust your definition of success and pat yourself on the back. Did you spend too much time obsessing over something--time that should have been spent, say, greening your lawn for the neighbor's sake? What did you do during that time? Maybe you got really good at Grand Theft Auto.

No matter how puerile the pursuit, you learned something, did something, got better at something. Stop whipping yourself with the New Year's cat-o'-nine-tails and put your chin up, soldier! Whether you are a starving artist or some Wall Street embarrassment hiding behind a back issue of Fortune, you need to give yourself some props.

You made it through a year of paranoia--market paranoia, security paranoia, genuine paranoia... You bit the bullet a number of times, sallying forth when the results weren't even guaranteed. Maybe your year was boring as hell, for all I know. But take a look at your lens. How do you measure success? It's an old question but it begs your attention.

This early New Year's Day (it's 1 a.m. Eastern where I am) is an opportunity not just to change your habits--eat better, spend more wisely--but to change your outlook. How does your attitude empower you to wake up earlier, walk more lightly, hit the job at hand harder than ever before? Do you feel good?

A friend of mine was recently extolling the virtue of passion. She said passion is crucial no matter what you are into. She said:

"If you sell vacuum cleaners, be passionate about it," she said. "Say: 'I love selling Hoovers and it is my LIFE, and if you got a problem with that, #@*% YOU!'"

There is much to be proud of, so why don't you enjoy it for once? What are you doing that you would like to enjoy more?

This is just another day. Our Gregorian calendar is just an arbitrary mark-time, a random beginning, middle and ending of our continuous revolution around the sun. Today is really not all that special, when you get right down to the science of it. Look around though. Your loved ones, your acquaintances and colleagues, even your hated ones: they think there is something special about all this. Do you? You are a pack animal, sir or madam! You cannot ignore the sentiments of those around you. Like it or not, you are affected by your peers and their attitudes, no matter how culturally arbitrary. New Year's matters.

Channel their influence on you in a positive way. Now is your moment to change your goggles, your viewpoint, your attitude. Take a look in the mirror, but this time I want you to smile.

May some of your most honest wishes come true this year!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008 Begins its Print Newspaper Bonanza

As predicted, Jason Sadler of fame is starting to get some attention in the print newspapers. Expect more ink spilled on bigger broadsheets over the next few weeks as Sadler's one-man marketing juggernaut continues to broach the digital divide.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas in Graffiti!

Photo by way of The Osterley Times, my favorite political blog of all time!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

How to Add Facebook Connect to Blogger in 12 Simple Steps

UPDATE for December 9, 2011: It's been almost three years since I posted this, and it's still getting hits. The instructions here are completely out of date and are absolutely useless at this point.

But! I'm guessing you came here searching for a way to integrate Facebook with your Blogger blog in some way.

Well, I have an answer for you. Or rather, a resource. It's not going to answer all of your questions, but trust me when I say, that as of today, December 9, 2011, your first and last stop when integrating Facebook functionality into your Blogger blog is to visit the Social Plugins page from Facebook itself.

Here it is:

Good luck.

UPDATE for APRIL 20, 2009: Ladies and gentlemen, Thank you for all your awesome participation. I learned a lot from your comments. Due to your comments I have had a change of heart. It appears the JS-Kit comment system is in fact the superior service, hands down. I recommend it. It comes pre-packaged with Facebook Connect functionality, along with oodles of other benefits Disqus does not have. Go to to install it on your blog right away.

This blog post is still 100% useful though, if you still want to install Disqus comments on your blog. It really is a great service - just not as good as JS-Kit.

To the people at Disqus: You guys have a beautiful product, and in some ways it is friendlier to use than JS-Kit. I wish you all the best in your quest to beat JS-Kit in the comment system wars. Good ol' competition makes us ALL better.

Will Conley
Man of Many Words

Do you have a blog on Blogger, WordPress, TypePad, Tumblr or Movable Type? Do you want to add Facebook Connect to your blog so that your readers can log in and comment using their Facebook accounts? Of course you do! There's just one problem: your mamma don't code and your daddy don't XML. That's right, I said it, and you ain't much hipper than they are. So what do you do?

Well kid, you've come to the right place. As of yesterday morning there is a quick-and-dirty way to integrate Facebook Connect into your Blogger comments section. The only specialized knowledge required is literacy. I did it myself in about 30 minutes. Try it out for yourself, right here on Man of Many Words. Scroll down and view the comments section for this post, select the option to log in with Facebook Connect, and then drop a holler. Cool, right?

So how did I do it? Just add Disqus and stir:

1. Open a new tab in your browser and keep this one open so you can refer to it.

2. Go to (pronounced "discuss"). Follow the simple instructions and install the Disqus comment system into your blog. Don't worry, you can keep all of your existing comments. (Are you worrying? Don't. No need.) Once you have set up Disqus for your blog, move on to Step 3.

3. Open another new tab and go to This will take you to the "Create App" page on Facebook.

Congratulations in advance, you are about to become a Facebook Developer! Wow! Unfortunately for your ego, it's really, really easy to do what you are about to do. It requires almost no coding skills whatsoever. Sorry. On the bright side, you won't have waste hours and hours of your holiday season trying to understand what all those tech sites are talking about when they blast a load of Javascript in your face and expect you to thank them for the hot tip. I mean, come on, add Facebook Connect in just 8 minutes? I sneeze in 8 minutes. Ain't no way anyone is adding Facebook Connect in 8 minutes. Not me, not Stephen Hawking, not anyone. They only say that to make you feel bad about yourself. Don't listen to them. You are smart. We shall now continue:

4. On the "Create App" page you navigated to in Step 3, fill in the field labeled "Application Name" with the name of your blog. Simple!

5. Agree to the Terms of Service and click "Save Changes". This will take you to the Edit page of your new app.

6. In the "Edit" page of your new app, fill in the field labeled "Callback URL" with

7. Scroll down to the bottom of the page and click "Save Changes". Don't close the tab.

8. Go back to the first tab, navigate to your Disqus Settings under "Admin".

9. Scroll down until you see the Facebook Connect logo. Tick the box at left.

10. Copy and paste the API Key from your Facebook App into its corresponding field on your Disqus settings.

11. Copy and paste the Secret from your Facebook App into its corresponding field on your Disqus settings.

12. Scroll down to the bottom of the Settings page on Disqus and click "Save".

Et voila! You have successfully added Facebook Connect to your blog. Season to taste. Serves millions. To try it out, you will need to log out of your Disqus account so that you will be able to see what your readers see.

Three things to consider:

  • This how-to guide applies for all platforms that use Disqus comments. I just targeted it at my Blogger friends who are still trying to hop upon the clue train.
  • Facebook Connect and Disqus aren't cooperating very well in Safari. As a workaround, set Safari to accept all cookies.
  • As Disqus and Facebook Connect are both new platforms, there are bound to be some bugs.

Please let me know how it goes, and Happy Festivus to all.

UPDATE: Looking for detailed instructions on how to install the Disqus comment system on other platforms? Well here you are:

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

To All 15 of My New RSS Subscribers

Two days ago I added Feedburner to my growing list of blog technologies to try out. Since then I have gained 15 readers, according to the stats at Feedburner. No, I cannot see who subscribes, I can only see the numbers and their basic clicking behavior. It is one of the better ways to see how people use your site and then adjust your approach accordingly.

So, moving on to my dedicated note for my new subscribers. I just want to make it clear that I welcome any and all communication from you. You can join this site via the Google Friend Connect widget in the sidebar, talk to me on any of my social networks, shoot me an email anytime you like, and of course, drop copious amounts of post comments (now with Facebook Connect!)

That said, here's a question for you. Why did you subscribe to my blog? I was going to create a poll at PollDaddy, but I decided we don't need to get fancy here. I will just list off a few guesses, and you can respond in the comments.

Your Reasons for Subscribing to Man of Many Words

  • My scowling face.
  • My happy face.
  • The oddly proportioned header.
  • My thoughts on social media.
  • My thoughts on life itself.
  • I blogged about a specific topic you are interested in.
  • Other

If I blogged about a topic that's near and dear to your heart, what was it?

A final word for now: If you blog or have a presence online somewhere and would like to share that information with me and/or my other readers, please do so!

Monday, December 22, 2008

What Santa Really Does

Merry Christmas, Happy Chanukah, Happy Kwanzaa, Happy Atheist Pagan Gift Giving Season, Happy Jesus Was Born in Late Summertime/Early Autumn...

Wait, what?

Luke 2:8-11 shows that shepherds were in the fields at night at the time of Jesus' birth. The book Daily Life in the Time of Jesus states: "The flocks . . . passed the winter under cover; and from this alone it may be seen that the traditional date for Christmas, in the winter, is unlikely to be right, since the Gospel says that the shepherds were in the fields." - WikiAnswers

No matter what your religious, political or factual predilections, I love this time of year. Melts my rusty heart right down to tears.

I am bodily sick right now, but spiritually feeling good.


Friday, December 19, 2008

Jason Sadler a.k.a. Goes Live

I just think this is fascinating. Jason Sadler wears your branded shirt for the price of whatever day in 2009 he wears it (e.g., January 1st is $1, December 31st is $365). The shirt can depict anything you want, as long as it's not too profane or inappropriate. He doesn't pimp your company out loud, necessarily, unless he feels like it. Buyers can request he salsa dance or do ten push-ups while wearing the shirt, but again the extras are up to his whim.

To get your brand seen, Jason:
And whatever else comes to mind.

The live stream he did today, which ran four hours in length, was an interactive bonanza. His viewership averaged a steady 150 throughout the live stream, many of whom chatted with each other and with him in real time. He showed us his closet with the 365 hangers. He shorted out his ceiling fan in his apartment. He got his girlfriend's family on the phone to do some promo shoutouts for

...and everybody just more-or-less had a goofy time of it.

People are excited about Jason's ploy. Yes, it's a transparent scheme to get money in a troubled economy, but that's what's so endearing about it. He's just a guy. He uses words like "sweet" and "awesome" to promote your brand. Not that this is all that new. For years people have been tattooing brand names on their skulls, selling their bodies as billboards to guerilla marketing firms, and so on. What's different about Jason's idea is the era in which it is taking place.

Twitter, Facebook, the proliferation of live personal video streaming--all this is relatively new, and even less understood as a marketing medium. The business colleges and universities of the world continue to hold onto traditional marketing for dear life, if only to safeguard their graying jobs. As print newspaper models (see the Tribune Company) plummet in profitability, social media is a wide open field. In these early stages of social media, little guys can profit. Give it a few years, and we'll all likely be shoved out of the way by the mega-conglomerates. The whole dream of an open Internet will become but a collective longing for a bygone era.

That bygone era is NOW. Jason Sadler is using it while he can, and so should you and I. As for Jason's project itself, I suspect it is going to command a lot of ink in the (dying) print media. As I said, this is not a new idea, but his execution is mesmerizing for its interactive capabilities. I myself plopped a few comments into the chat stream while he was running his live promo today, and he responded on camera immediately, laughing along with his viewers.

No day is safe from Jason's campaign. Christmas Day has already been sold. He'll even wear your shirt if he has a wedding or funeral to attend.

Jason doesn't mind making a fool of himself. He's already sold the shirtspace on his back to half a year's worth of companies. The Royal Botanical Gardens already bought a week's worth of shirt-wearing, and they're even flying him to London for a good time. All told he is poised to make about $66,000 in 2009. With the backing of his day job and a few hundred early followers/fans, he should be able to raise the price in 2010.

Now that's creative marketing. At this point he could spin this into anything he wants. So what if you call him a corporate whore. You and I both know it's brilliant.

Check Out NOW

Hey all, breaking news: go to right now and watch this guy's live stream. He's live, chatting with his viewers right now, 2pm Eastern, talking about his idea. He wears your branded shirt for a day at face value: January 1 is $1, December 31 is $365, and the first 160 days are sold out. The guy is hilarious and he is ubiquitous. Your brand will benefit, for sure. Bound to get maximum ink.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

A Parable of Useless Statistics

A mouse and a mastodon, whose average height is about equal to that of a man, walk into a bar.

The mastodon wrecked the place and who cares about the mouse?

The average man was nowhere to be seen.

The next time you try to use numbers to make your case, consider telling a story instead. It's more truthful. Right?

Monday, December 15, 2008

This Blog is BACKED UP by

Apparently even Google deleted their blog once. Guess we all need a safety net. is currently holding a contest RIGHT NOW whereby if you

  • back up your blog with them,
  • join them on a social network,
  • subscribe to their feed or,
  • yes, blog about Bloggled,
you get a chance to win a sweet prize, one of which is a 16GB iPod Touch. Prizes are given away every 2 hours today only (Dec. 15 2008). I myself signed up for the free version of Bloggled and backed up my blog--it was easy and fast. The free backup service works with all Blogger accounts, and they are working on getting up to speed for backing up Wordpress, Typepad, and other platforms.

Give it a shot, why doncha?

Thursday, December 11, 2008 Wins Blogger's Choice Open Web Award

One of my revenue sources,, won a Blogger's Choice Open Web Award in the category of How-to yesterday. For those of you who don't live and breathe the Internet, the Open Web Awards are a BIG DEAL. Mashable is the leading online magazine for all that's new and wonderful in the world of social media.

More likely, you have heard of, but here's the quick intro, and then I'll get back to our story: contains advice for "How To Do Just About Everything", as goes their slogan. In recent months, however, eHow has expanded its repertoire to include "About", "How Does" and other article formats. Although the website is designed to encourage its readers to submit and monetize their own articles, the majority of eHow's 250,000-article library are written professionally by a small army of paid-up-front contributers from around the United States.

I am one of those contributors. To date I have published 112 articles about, well, just about everything for, like:

What Is a Poem?
How Does the CIA Work?
About Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle
How to Live Homeless
How to Talk to a New Yorker
How to Avoid Getting into a Bar Fight
How to Position Lights for Photography
How to Print a Page From Google Books

Titles range from obscure to hilarious to downright indispensable. There are no limits. After all, eHow is run by Demand Studios, whose parent company is Demand Media, which is a creation of Richard Rosenblatt. He's the man who helped raise MySpace to superstardom and brokered the deal to sell it (along with its parent company Intermix) to Rupert Murdoch's News Corp.

"Attach a cable to Richard Rosenblatt and you could power a small town," said You're dealing with a major go-getter here, is the point. So far Demand Media has shelled out well over $10 million to its army of writers, copy editors, filmmakers, transcribers and title proofers. That's not including any of the administrative or infrastructure overhead.

In theory, eHow makes its money on ad revenue. I worry about this business model. I suspect eHow is not turning a profit, but Rosenblatt is crazy like a local car dealership commercial. With four night clubs, a multi-faceted partnership with Lance Armstrong, and dozens of other irons in the fire, who knows what kind of capitalization this man's got up his sleeves? There's something he knows that I don't.

Whatever the case, Rosenblatt should be proud of eHow and its production factory Demand Studios for coming this far. They really have been slogging through some massive technical problems on both the production and distribution ends of the operation. As a contributor I can attest to their overall improvement over the last few months. Kudos to Rosenblatt for hiring a such a committed and patient editorial and administrative team over at Demand Studios. What those people do--manage a thousand writers every day--is akin to herding cats.

I just hope Rosenblatt doesn't go selling Demand Studios to Fox News' sugar daddy like he did with MySpace.

UPDATE: Want to know more about Richard Rosenblatt? Check out the following links, courtesy of Demand Media SEO Manager Jeff Grant:

Demand Media Company Profile
Web 2.0 Summit Profile
Web 2.0 Summit Presentations
Follow Rosenblatt's Tweets

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Why I Won't Join a Six Degrees of Separation Group on Facebook

Public relations and marketing communications professionals can learn something from the following parable:

My friend Katie invited me to a six-degrees group, and I was going to join, because I think it's a worthy experiment: Can we, through six degrees of separation, connect with everyone on Facebook? Empirically, statistically, it would be interesting to join and find out first-hand.

But then I saw a discussion thread whose title contained a racial epithet. It was an obvious ploy to get attention, and the 800 comments in the thread are testimony to the ploy's success. I didn't bother to read the comments or post one myself, because I know that would just feed the beast, and I don't want to associate myself with the word in question.

Another six-degrees group had a discussion thread whose bear-baiting title posed the question, "Can someone give me one logical reason why gays should have rights?" I didn't try putting that fire out either.

Yet another of these groups had one discussion inviting people to "Stereotype The Person Above You" and one posing the thought-provoking query "tits,face, or ass, which one is better". You get the idea.

The comment counts for those discussion threads each number in the hundreds. The threads would not have appeared in the top three discussions had they not received all that attention. That's how things work around here: The more people are participating in something, the more likely that thing is to get seen.

The Internet is a great place to learn the following:

Sometimes the best way to make something go away is to ignore it.

PR and marcomm people take heed. If the company you represent gets some bad press or stumbles across some nasty feedback on some no-name blog, consider ignoring it. Let the negativity die in peace and quiet. Die of it too.

Social Media Follies

The thing about social networking is it takes the pants off your company. I'll just say that for now.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

The End of Snark...and other hopes

Death to snark. "Snide remark" is its etymology. A slyly disparaging remark. No, no one has been snarky towards me or anyone in my vicinity lately. It's just a thought. I don't want it around me. Death to snark. We clear?

I promised "other hopes" in the title of this post.

I hope to stay close to my center of energy.

I hope to make real that which I envision.

I hope to continue.

I hope to run into more people that I like.

What do you hope?

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

My Latest Freelance Consulting Work

I have begun doing freelance consulting work for the following three organizations: BestFriend NY, CardPartner, and Il Mio Vino.

BestFriend NY, Inc.
A website about living the New York Dream. Targeted mainly to "settlers" of NYC but also useful for those residents who may not know as much as they think they do! Articles, videos, and more.

I am working with BFNY President and CEO Douglas Davis and techie/entrepreneur Simone Tarantino to see that the new website design--yet to be released--is beautiful and functional and that the content is relevant.

An affinity credit card program for smaller non-profits. Until CardPartner came along, affinity credit card programs have been off-limits to all but the biggest players. Through CardPartner any organization can design five credit cards with their own logos/images and offer the card (it's a Visa Platinum, with plenty of additional perqs exclusive to the CardPartner program) to its supporters. Each activated card brings in $50 to the organization compliments of the bank known as UMB (a very secure bank in these trouble times), plus a continuing percentage of retail purchases. It's a fun, easy, FREE way for smaller, member-supported organizations to raise extra funds. Plus CardPartner makes it simple to market the card using their online marketing toolkit (just enter into the sign-in field for a test drive).

I am creating a robust social networking presence for the company.

Il Mio Vino
An online magazine for wine lovers! It looks and acts exactly like an offline magazine. You turn pages, you can't highlight text, and so on. The site works beautifully and looks it too.

I will likely be helping them with their viral marketing campaign soon.