Waitin’ All Day for a New Singer

Country artist Faith Hill, who sang NBC’s Sunday Night Football anthem for six years, announced via tweet that she would no longer be singing the anthem.  The anthem, which is entitled “Waitin’ All Day for Sunday Night,” is an altered version of Joan Jett’s “Hate Myself for Loving You.”  On her official Twitter account, Faith tweeted, “Amazing 2 have been part of SNF–an honor.  I’ve just let everyone know it’s time 2 let someone else rock the open. Difficult decision. Kinda emotional. Love all you guys at SNF–I’ll be watching!!!”

Personally, I am sad to see that this tradition won’t continue.  She did a terrific job, and she set the bar really high.  P!nk, who sang the anthem for the inaugural season of Sunday Night Football on NBC, offered a true tribute to Joan Jett.  But Faith made the song her own, bringing strong vocals and less scream.

I’m interested to see what direction NBC goes in with the next artist.  Do they go after someone young?  Will they continue the pattern of having a female singer, or will they change it up and pick a male vocalist?  I was never a big fan of Hank Williams Jr. and his role with Monday Night Football, but I would be open to having a male vocalist take over the role.  In the end football’s largest audience is males, and having an attractive female singer would make males happy.

Who would you like to see sing the next Sunday Night Football anthem? Respond in the comment section below!

It’s Here!

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Facebook Graph Search has arrived!  While some of my other friends were upgraded to the new Facebook.com layout and graph search earlier in April, the upgrade has finally arrived for my account.  I am very excited about the capabilities of the Graph Search.  Some critics have claimed that the Graph Search is a gimmick.  While it may appear that as a gimmick, it’s a vast improvement over the old search system that Facebook previously had in place.

I think it’s also worth noting the new Facebook website layout.  Just like in other things, people are usually against change.  Facebook users always cause a ruckus when the layout of the page is altered, but this time I think Facebook did something right.  The website looks remarkably similar to the Facebook smartphone applications, which is very peculiar.  Usually the mobile app developers are trying to emulate the feel of the full Facebook website on a mobile app.  However this time it appears that the simple and clean lines of the Facebook mobile app are being used for the new Facebook layout.  What could be the reasoning behind this change?

As more people gain access to the Internet with smartphones, tablets, and other computing devices, websites will need to become more flexible.  Websites will have to be compatible on a variety of devices, operating systems, and screen sizes.  Websites will also have to become touch-friendly, and the new Facebook layout absolutely reinforces this idea.  While it is extremely easy to use on a desktop or laptop computer, Facebook.com will also be easy to use on mobile devices as well now.

A Grrrrrreat Trip

It’s very difficult to ignore the temptation of adorable dogs, and our trip to the Nebraska Humane Society really tested me.  Yes, it was very tempting to adopt one of the many cute, furry dogs that licked my fingers and wagged their tails when I approached their kennels.  Showcasing these adorable creatures and sharing their stories are excellent ways to get them adopted, and after listening to Elizabeth speak I was very impressed with what the Nebraska Humane Society was doing to encourage this on social media websites.

I absolutely understand how social media would appear as a daunting and impossible task to non-profits organizations.  After hearing how Elizabeth developed a plan, tried things out, and listened to what the people wanted, I realized just how important Facebook analytics are.  I had no idea that the number of how many people shared or commented on a status affected the placement of future posts on a user’s news feed.  It was extremely clever to take advantage of what the moderator knows will be successful to boost the placement of other posts, comments, or pictures, that might not generate quite the same amount of buzz.  I think that is a priceless piece of advice that can be applied to not only Facebook, but Twitter as well.

I was also surprised at how many users shared or liked posts if Elizabeth included that as an instruction in her post.  It’s a genius way to engage users and build that strong online community that companies are looking for.  Sometimes people just want to be told what to do, and that is definitely a lesson that I learned.

What I learned at the Nebraska Humane Society will absolutely influence my social media plan for Baker’s.  While Baker’s has a solid Facebook page setup already, I think that a good way to improve interaction on the page would be to ask the users what they want to see.  For example, maybe the users would like more videos and less pictures of food.  Interestingly, Baker’s does ask followers on Twitter to retweet a Tweet fairly often, but so few people follow Baker’s that it doesn’t really matter.

Using the tools available (Google Statistics, Facebook analytics) will guide you when developing content for a company’s social media accounts.


My dog, Sunny. Sunny is a golden retriever.


What happened to the news?


Where’s Jim?

Jim Flowers, the longtime chief meteorologist at Omaha’s WOWT-TV, disappeared from the airwaves in December, 2012.  It wasn’t until December 26 that WOWT posted on its Facebook page that it decided not to renew Jim’s contract.  The post can be viewed here.  While there hasn’t been an official announcement, apparently there’s a good chance that Jim will be joining KMTV on June 1, 2013.  There is a profile page on KMTV’s web site that hints at Jim’s arrival.

While this is an example that has taken place on the local level, it is part of a national trend.  Tenured, experienced news anchors and reporters are being cut and replaced with younger, cheaper personnel.  Stations are looking to maximize profit and cut ties with reporters and anchors who are making a lot of money.  Because of this, no one’s job can be considered safe from being eliminated.  As a student, this is very troubling.

Within the last ten years, the field of journalism has changed tremendously with the explosion of social media and cell phones.  Because of this transition period, it is intimidating to know what to expect when I graduate from Creighton.  Because the economy is still struggling, there are a lot of unemployed people who are seeking jobs.  Upon graduation, I will need to make sure that I have a wide skill set to help me stand out from the other job applicants.  What was already a competitive process will become even more challenging!  Being familiar with web programming, social media tools and websites, and the Adobe Creative Suite will be immensely beneficial for me when I apply for my first job following graduation.

Inside Best Buy’s Social Media Policy


Best Buy‘s social media policy contains a small introduction explaining that whatever takes place online should be treated like face-to-face interactions.  The same values, ethics, and confidentiality policies still apply, and this policy applies whether it is Best Buy-sponsored events or personal use in relation to Best Buy.  There is a large emphasis on protecting the brand and protecting yourself.  The subheading under the policy reads, “Be smart. Be respectful. Be human.”

Best Buy’s policy implies using social media, but it isn’t explained explicitly in the policy.  The policy is broken down into two sections: what to do and what not to do.  What to-do includes disclosing your affiliation, state that it’s your opinion and not Best Buy’s, protect yourself, act responsibly and ethically, don’t discriminate, and what to do with offers and contests.  What not to-do includes releasing any financial information that isn’t already public, advertising internal promotions, or releasing personal, legal, copyrighted, or confidential information.  There are the same number of to-do’s as there there are to-don’ts.  This policy is an all-encompassing tool that applies to all social media websites.

Following the list of things to-do and not to-do, there is a very blunt paragraph that explains why it is important to follow the policy.  It reads, “Follow Best Buy’s policies and live the company’s values and philosophies. They’re there for a reason.”  Following the paragraph is the list of consequences that apply if the policy isn’t followed.  The consequences include getting fired, get into legal trouble with customers and Best Buy, and the ability to retain or attract customers.  In addition, the customer information policy, information security policy, code of business ethics, confidentiality policy, policy against all forms of harassment, inappropriate conduct policy, securities trading policy, and more contact information if there are other questions.

The policy is very readable, and the format of using bullet points makes it much easier to absorb and understand.  The web page also shows when the policy was created, which was March 24, 2009, and when it was last updated, which was August 3, 2012.  I think it’s very important that people know that this policy has been updated.  However there is no way to tell what has been edited within the policy, which is something that I wish I had access to.

Overall Best Buy really emphasizes living up to a high standard with values, ethics, and common sense. The policy isn’t specific to one type of social media website, but is a blanket policy that can be applied to any social media website.  I like using a bullet-style format versus a paragraph form.  What I would do differently is show what has been edited or changed since implementation in 2009 as well as encourage using social media.  From reading the policy Best Buy is overly cautious, which is completely fine, but doesn’t doesn’t demonstrate how to take advantage of using social media in an effective way.

The policy for Best Buy can be located here.

Changing of the Guard at 30 Rockefeller Center

Since 1986, General Electric has had a stake in media conglomerate NBC Universal.  On the skirts of selling its majority stake to Comcast in 2009, today General Electric announced its intention to sell its remaining stake (49%) to Comcast for $16.7 billion.  It’s a very sad day for television enthusiasts like myself, as this is the beginning of a new NBC Universal.

The National Broadcasting Company, first a radio network before experimenting with television, was founded by GE, Westinghouse Electric Company, and Radio Corporation of America in 1926.  For over 80 years, NBC Universal has been tied to its founding companies.  RCA owned NBC Universal until 1986, when GE acquired RCA and NBC Universal.

The news of GE selling its remaining minority stake in NBC Universal is significant because for the first time in its history, NBC Universal will not be owned in some shape or form by GE or RCA.  It is sad to witness, as the number of media companies decreases.  As companies try to save money, news sources are now controlled by fewer and fewer people or companies.  Small newspapers and television stations who at one time were locally owned are being acquired by national media conglomerates who care more about quantity rather than quality.

I hope Comcast doesn’t forget the tradition and history that NBC Universal has.  It deserves to be treated better than just another channel on the television lineup.






Elementary Gets Schooled by Delayed Start

When CBS announced that the prized post-Super Bowl time slot would be given to its freshman drama Elementary, the overall reaction by viewers on TVBytheNumbers.com website was lackluster to put it politely.  Elementary, which is supposed to be a modern interpretation of Sherlock Holmes and Watson, was having a decent first season, but was not one of CBS’ top dramas.  CBS’ top dramas include veterans NCIS and NCIS: Los Angeles, Criminal Minds, CSI:, Blue Bloods, The Good Wife, The Mentalist, and Person of Interest.  CBS obviously hoped that by putting Elementary in the post-Super Bowl time slot it would bring new viewers to the show and spark new interest.

Hurt greatly by the 34 minute blackout during the third quarter of the Super Bowl, Elementary didn’t start until after 11/10 CDT.  Despite averaging a 7.8 rating in the key 18-49 demographic and over 20 million viewers, it was a major drop-off from the Super Bowl lead-in, which averaged a 46.3 rating and over 108 million people.  According to TVBTN.com, this makes Elementary as one of the lowest-rated shows following a Super Bowl ever.  Only ABC’s debut of Alias had a worse result.

To put this into perspective, the Big Bang Theory and NCIS both average nearly 20 million viewers on a regular basis.  Maybe next time CBS should stick with a comedy, because it appears that viewers were not interested in watching another police cop drama.

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What’s the Score?




No, I’m not referring to a sporting event.  I’m talking about my social media impact score.  This measures how involved I am on my social media websites and how far my social media reach is.

On Klout, I connected my Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ accounts.  I received a preliminary score of 39, which is surprising to me.  I rarely post anything on Google+ and Facebook, which probably brought down my score.  I use Twitter frequently, and I think my score will be adjusted up as I improve my social media habits.

According to Twitalyzer, I am a casual user who has an impact of 0.1.  I currently have 405 followers.  My most-used hashtag is #domination, and my favorite topics include business and finance, Facebook, news and society, the NFL, social issues, and television.

Kred Story shows my true passion for Twitter in comparison to the other measuring services.  I have an influence of 735 and an outreach level of 8 out of 12.  It lists my top communities as students and sports with 13% and music at 7%.

According to Social Mention, I have a 1% strength, a 1:1 ratio of positive to negative sentiments, 36% passion, a 7% reach, an average of 17 hours between mentions, and my top user is huskervols11.  Huskervols11 is a best friend of mine from high school.

Overall I’m not shocked by the scores that I received.  However the competitive side of me is coming out, and I want to improve my scores.  One way I know I can improve my score is to retweet with comments more often instead of a native retweet.

Now, engage! Go discover your score!

Who Are You?

When the instructions were delivered for this blog assignment, the first thing that popped into my head was the familiar melody of “Who Are You” by The Who.

I absolutely love the television franchise of CSI:, including the original CSI:Crime Scene Investigation in Las Vegas, CSI:Miami, and CSI:NY.  The theme song for CSI:Crime Scene Investigation asks the important question: who are you?

For the television show, it is a relevant question as a team of crime scene investigators attempt to solve murder mysteries and bring closure to families of victims.  For a sophomore journalism major at Creighton University, this question is tricky to nail down.  I struggled for quite a while thinking of how to approach answering this question.  I don’t want to come across as sounding arrogant or self-centered, but I discovered that I wasn’t thinking of answering the question in the right context.

If I want to develop my own brand and identity, I need to differentiate myself.  If my brand is to accurately reflect who I am, then I need to be myself and communicate my special talents and background.  The field of journalism is continuously evolving, so I am unsure of what jobs will be available when I graduate in 2015.  However, I am confident that I will locate a job upon graduation.

Who am I?

I am a farm boy who grew up in a small Nebraska town that enjoys sharing my love of technology and computers with the world.


How I am Connected in the Digital Age

I was born in 1993, on the fringe of the World Wide Web boom.  For quite some time in our household, we had dial-up Internet service through the telephone line.  As a child, I spent most of my time outside or reading books, so I never really used the Internet.  By the time I signed up for a MySpace account in junior high, no one used MySpace anymore.

My first active social media account was on Facebook, which my sister set up for me in 2008.  I did not check it regularly, and I didn’t see a point to it.  The first social media website I actively participated in was Twitter, which I joined in 2009.  I used it often because my high school friends and I used it to communicate privately throughout the school day without getting into trouble.  Although Twitter has exploded in popularity and no longer is very private, my original group of friends and I still use it.  In fact, I would consider Twitter to be the social media website I use the most.  I love being able to be informed of breaking news and events as they happen via Twitter if I happen to be away from a computer or television.

As I have grown older and social media websites have increased in number, I have changed my habits.  I do have Facebook and Twitter mobile applications for my cell phone; however I don’t receive notifications from them.  As for my computer, I usually have Twitter and Facebook open as tabs in my web browser.  At one time I used Facebook to post updates; however now I use Facebook more to share pictures and keep in touch with old classmates.

I always wonder what the next big social media website fad will be, but for now I am content with Facebook and Twitter.