Category: I work

Last week, a friend invited me to be part of his marriage proposal.

The friend was Len Kendall (one of the founders of First, he mobilized hundreds of people by inviting them to a Facebook event. This was his venue to explain his plan to propose to Katie using an internet meme. The FB event also opened up a venue for discussion (and a little trash talk) among contributors.

This morning, Buzzfeed let Len take over their homepage for the day. (They loved the idea when he approached them with it two weeks ago.)

On Len’s proposal post, anybody could post their contributions through a meme generator embedded in the comment tool. Buzzfeed created this tool just for Len. With it, users simply uploaded a background, positioned the picture layer of Len proposing, and added their own message. Hundreds of us added to the “meme” and shared the posts to their social networks. Len even directed contributors to share with the hashtag #SayYesKatie.

At about noon CST, Len posted an update – Katie said yes!

Scott Lamb, BuzzFeed’s managing editor, says, “It’s been one of the biggest and fastest growing community reaction posts we’ve ever done.” Jack Shepherd at Buzzfeed even posted a Best-of #SayYesKatie post.

So the story traveled, as good stories often do.
#SayYesKatie appeared on MSNBCThe Chicago Tribune, and Mashable, among other outlets.

My contributions

(Buzzfeed post)
(Buzzfeed post)
(Buzzfeed post, based on Marquese Scott’s jaw-dropping dance video.) 

So, what does it mean, Double Rainbow?

Stop – I’m not even half as cool as a DR. But here’s what I think.

With the maturing and evolution of the social web, people now have the power to bend the internet. We’ve used the web billions of times to promote other media, but now we can do so much more to harness its own power. I know this is all very meta, but just think of it this way:
When television was first came along, people thought it was a great way to advertise radio.

If an individual like Len can “bend” the internet to tell his story, in what amazing ways could the social web tell yours?


If I seem like a shy writer, it’s because I’m in the midst of moving this week from Chicago to sunny Los Angeles. My work with Critical Mass leads me there, and I couldn’t be more grateful. LA holds a lot of opportunity for folks in the field of digital content. My head spins and my heart swells. But mostly the spinning.

I’ll post an update very soon after the move. Feel free to ask questions in the comments! I’ll be happy to answer.

Wow… Okay, first, I have to shout-out one of my favorite YA authors Jay Asher. See, Jay writes books you can’t put down. In fact, people might stop you on the street for reading Thirteen Reasons Why because they’re also HUGE fans (happened to me. Of course, that’s because I read while walking. Um, maybe I shouldn’t admit that.)

Not only that, Jay really gets social media. And when I say someone really gets it, I definitely DON’T mean they’re the loudest guy on the block or they’re only using it to talk to some elite, mysterious group of powerplayers. Nope, Jay coyly posted this on Facebook last night:

You should go check out the lastest issue of Entertainment Weekly. I haven’t seen it myself yet, but apparently it’s got some nice articles this week.

Right. So when I saw the post, only one friend of his had replied. She asked if it had something to do with a Kardashian. Jay had even “Liked” her comment, but didn’t leave any more clues. Now, I’ve never met Jay in person, but I had a feeling he was holding back. So I asked,

Does it include news about the TRW movie or TFOU?? C’mon, man!

[I was referring to Thirteen Reasons Why and Jay’s upcoming book, The Future of Us (which coincidentally follows a girl glimpsing her 2011 Facebook profile 15 years early, like a social media crystal ball), co-written with Carolyn Mackler.]

That’s when the details finally started spilling. This week’s Entertainment Weekly includes a story on Jay and his work! Facebook being Facebook, that same comment thread detoured to TV spots, donuts, and new mantras to “Own the Ridonculousness” before finally settling on a virtual group hug. See, we all love Jay’s work and we’re so excited for him. I, for one, don’t mind shouting out all his news – even if he doesn’t want to. :) And that might just be what social media’s all about.

In other news, my Pitchapalooza win at Printer’s Row Lit Fest was covered in Newcity Lit today!
(In case you missed it, here are all the gory details.)

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