Introducing The Three Things

Like my buddy, Gini Dietrich, I’ve always been a fan of Mitch Joel’s Six Links Worthy of Your Attention series. The links he shares along with Hugh McGuire and Alistair Croll often turn me on to things that fall slightly beyond my focus, but that help expand my interests.

When Gini suggested that, along with Howie Goldfarb, we pay homage to Mitch’s concept (read: when she insisted that we totally rip it off), I jumped at the opportunity. They’re both really, really smart and care deeply about things like PR, communication, branding, social media and aliens (I won’t lie, Howie’s into some weird stuff as well). With the exception of aliens, these are all areas I’m interested in, but don’t quite pay enough attention to, so the idea of Howie and Gini offering up interesting things for me to read appealed. While I know they will often fall outside what I talk about here on the site, I hope you’ll find them interesting as well.

So in other words, welcome to the first edition of The Three Things, a weekly series where Gini, Howie and I share the one thing each that we think you’ll find interesting. Without further ado…

The Generational Podcast: Preparing for the Worst-Case Scenario

Michael on Technology: As more of our lives exist on hard drives instead of photo albums and filing cabinets, there’s a lot that needs to be considered. Hard drives fail, personal information gets stolen, and essential information for loved ones live behind a myriad of passwords. Two of the smartest (and geekiest) guys I know, Eddie Smith of Practically Efficient and Gabe Weatherhead of Macdrifter, help you understand why you should care about digital planning and how to better manage it. This gets geeky (and a bit paranoid), but it’s too important to ignore.

Do Not Track is Worse than a Miserable Failure

Howie on Privacy: I am a huge proponent of privacy, or at least having proper controls online to manage your presence. It has been one of the bigger beefs I have with Facebook and I champion opt-in versus opt-out in the advertising, marketing, and technology industries. When asked if people care, they do. In a 2009 study by the SSRN, not only do a majority of people reject tailored advertising and being tracked across websites without their knowledge, more than 50 percent felt managers at companies that do this should go to jail.

So it didn’t shock me the Do Not Track voluntary industry initiative has been a failure. What did shock me is companies such as Google who claim, “Do no evil” and Apple allow mobile app developers to watch not only where you go and what you do on your phone, but even see the numbers you dial.

Bearded Sihk Woman Teaches Reddit a Lesson in Tolerance

Gini on Decency: We’ve all done this and now I feel badly (I just posted a photo of the back of some guy’s head because he was cutting me in line). Someone took a photo of a bearded woman standing in line at the airport and posted it to his Reddit page, where hundreds of people ridiculed her. When the woman found out, she acted with grace and charm, while teaching the users a lesson or six about her religion and beliefs.

There you have it. The very first edition of The Three Things. If there is anything you’d like to see us include or do differently, let me know in the comments below and be sure to subscribe for free by RSS or email to get future editions and more from A Better Mess.

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