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Archive | June, 2012

Facebook Offers New Options for Businesses

Facebook’s listing on the NYSE has made it the biggest IPO for a technology company in history. While there have already been bumps along the road, Facebook is furthering its efforts to secure its future by becoming the go-to social media platform for small businesses to interact with their customers.

The dizzying pace that technology has undertaken has left many small business owners overwhelmed and confused about what is required to be successful online. As a result, many companies have sprung up to provide consulting services for small businesses to gain traction in the Internet marketplace. But this in itself can be overwhelming for business-owners who aren’t familiar with online marketing and the different services offered by different marketing companies.

Facebook is making an attempt to change this. They have opened up its functionality to small business owners, attempting to cut out the contractors by providing marketing to companies for free. While these functionalities are not what these third parties provide, they allow the individual business owner greater freedom regarding their visibility and interaction with a larger customer base.

Some of the new features are as follows:

  1. Administrator Roles. Now, Facebook has provided new roles to assist the small business owner with their business page. These include management, which entails full control in post creation, ads, editing page functionality and apps, comment management, messaging, and Facebook insights. The owner can also review and analyze data regarding one’s traffic to their page.
  2. Scheduling Functionality. This involves putting up posts at given times on your page as if it were posted manually, but with the ability to automate these posts. This is a means to target the highest-traffic times on Facebook to reach the largest number of individuals with product and service offerings.

These two basic functionalities will help maximize visibility on Facebook. Even with all the issues besetting this company, it is still the biggest captured market online, thus one of the best ways to reach out to a captive audience for your goods and services.

 

Control of the Internet to be Granted to United Nations?

This December 2012, the United Nations will meet in Dubai UAE concerning matters that can carry long term effects for all users of the Internet. The question in mind is, should the United Nations be granted more control over the Internet?

This meeting is precipitated with members of the US government together with private sector firms meeting with lawmakers to find ways to shoot down this proposal, as it would be considered as a serious breach of existing norms.

The current set-up is regulated through a multi-stakeholder system, wherein many private and public organizations have specific roles to keep the Internet online and
under control. Modifying, altering or even changing the status quo, according to these stakeholders, can result in grave consequences to the operation and structure of the
Internet.

According to Robert McDowell, FCC Commissioner, “A top-down centralized international regulatory overlay is antithetical to the architecture of the Net, which is a global network of networks without borders. No government, let alone an intergovernmental body, can make engineering and economic decisions in lightning-fast Internet time.”

Countries that support the plan have argued that organizations currently overseeing the Internet, such as the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers or ICANN, are too closely related to the United States. Should this feature be moved to the United Nations, then this process, such as naming conventions, would become more democratic in nature and control.

Another major issue highlighted by Internet privacy experts would be the increased role of censorship heavy nations such as China on Internet regulation would effectively
have consequences for free speech on the Internet. One such expert, Larry Seltzer for Byte Magazine said, “Maybe it bothers you that the US controls these major keys to
the Internet, but I think it’s a good thing. Without control of these critical facilities, no international group of dictators can really exert much control outside of their own
boundaries.”