Lunchtime Links: On Employing an Online Celebrity

Your worker is famous for something he or she did on the internet. What do you do? Also: A quick tip for keeping your accounts slightly more secure.

Let’s face it: Anyone can be famous. Need proof? I have a story about this.

Earlier this year, a good friend of mine cocreated a popular meme that drew millions of hits, media attention, and a photo-op with the target of the meme’s humor. It was a sudden surge of attention for him and his cohort, and the meme played a direct role in him getting a better job.

With social media making it easier for anyone to become known online, your office might be housing an online celebrity.

Stories like this are becoming more and more common, and with social media making it easier for anyone to become known online, your office might be housing an online celebrity.

That and more in today’s Lunchtime Links:

Famous on the internet: If you employ an “online celebrity” with a self-built social media brand, you should embrace the situation, according to the Wall Street Journal,  but know the challenges it raises. “Co-branded employees can raise tough questions about how to contain their online activities—and how to compensate them,” the Journal‘s Alexandra Samuel explains. “It also isn’t easy for managers to balance responsibilities among the bloggers and nonbloggers within a team. And it takes an effort to make sure employees’ brands align with the company’s.” (ht Steve Drake)

A quick security tip: Need some help protecting the security of your personal accounts? Make stuff up! That’s the advice Roy Furchgott of The New York Times gives regarding the security questions you always get. Instead of putting in your mother’s maiden name, put in your favorite ice cream flavor. Why’s that? Furchgott explains: “With so much information out there online, people can pretty easily find things like your mother’s maiden name, your pet’s name, your high school mascot and so forth — all of which are common security questions.” While not a fail-safe — if someone figures out the method to your mayhem, it becomes ineffective — it might be a lot safer than information that’s freely available online.

The problem with mobile ads: Ever wonder why the leap from web to mobile hasn’t been particularly easy for publishers or companies like Facebook? Look at the advertising. Mashable’s Todd Wasserman breaks down some of the issues, from the great variations in connection quality to the limitations of behavioral targeting. Have an iPad edition for your association’s magazine? This bit will be relevant to you: “For magazines and newspapers, the advent of tablets has presented an opportunity to reboot themselves,” he writes. “However, readers often aren’t accessing their content the way they did on the web. In particular, many readers have gotten into the habit of downloading their magazine or newspaper and then reading it later, often on the train, where there’s no WiFi connection.” Have you been able to make sense of these differences?

Thoughts on transparency: According to Plexus Consulting Group’s Steven Worth, taking internal issues public can help simplify or defuse ethical concerns. “Transparency works in organizations that are dedicated, or which should be dedicated, to the public good because it appeals to all people’s fundamental sense of what is right,” he explains. Do you air difficult issues to your members?

See anything cool online today? Let us know in the comments.

(Photo by choreograph / 123RF)

Ernie Smith

By Ernie Smith

Ernie Smith is a former senior editor for Associations Now. MORE

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