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February 15, 2008

Social Media's 10 Commandments

Everyone pretty much remembers Charlton Heston's character, Moses, in the classic epic, "The Ten Commandments". It's funny how a Bible story can hold so much weight even thousands of years later, in a nation where prayer is no longer aloud in schools and even freedom of speech has its limitations.

So what exactly, then, are the rules when it comes to social media? Is it such a new concept, that for the time being, anything goes? Surely not, and Sonia, over at Remarkable Communication, does a fantastic job explaining the 10 Commandments of New Social Media that will give anyone involved with online marketing a fairly good idea of the boundaries and rules of social media. Here are a couple of my favorites:

"Commandment #1: Thou Shalt Participate in the Conversation
The conversation is going to take place with you or without you. The 21st century has no patience with cowards. Opting out is not an option, so get in there and participate.
Commandment #5: Remember Thy Community and Keep It Holy
It's not an audience of passive recipients of your message. It's a community made up of a complicated mix of personalities. The community has its own needs and its own imperatives. Take care of your community."

Even though we are in the early days of social media, it is best to keep in mind a healthy set of conversations and guidelines. Sonia recognizes that her list of commandments won't keep you out of every bit of trouble but will keep you on the right track for the most part. For example, Commandment #3 is all about keeping it real, no fake comments and don't engineer conversations. This applies directly to the post I wrote about buying votes and subscribers. Whether it be for money or or some form of Internet credits, according to Sonia's list, this form of "black hat" marketing would be considered social media sin.

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Aw, big old smooch to you for the nice write-up!

Another Pisces, no wonder you are so intelligent and discerning . . .

Those commandements are great and very useful if you do it right. As you said, buying subscribers and comments and stuff like that is a sin...

Thanks for the link to the 10 commandments. I sometimes feel it's like drinking a waterfall trying to learn everything about social media, but fortunately I'm not shy and I hope to contribute to the global learning process about it!

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