Tag Archives: social media

Current Social Media Trends


Here are current trends and statistics in social media that businesses and organizations should be aware of when making their public relations decisions. Although having a Facebook page is often the first step for many, it is important to look at the other available platforms to determine what best connects with the key audiences a business or organization wishes to reach.

Here is a late 2015 snapshot of what is happening on the screen…

Facebook facts

  • Facebook is now the second largest site on the Internet according to Alexa, both in the US and around the globe. The average user spends an incredible 32 minutes a day on the Facebook.
  • Daily active users (DAUs) – DAUs were 1.04 billion on average for December 2015, an increase of 17% year-over-year.
  • Mobile DAUs – Mobile DAUs were 934 million on average for December 2015, an increase of 25% year-over-year.
  • Monthly active users (MAUs) – MAUs were 1.59 billion as of December 31, 2015, an increase of 14% year-over-year.
  • Mobile MAUs – Mobile MAUs were 1.44 billion as of December 31, 2015, an increase of 21% year-over-year.
  • Here are the amazing growth stats for Facebook from 2004 until today: 1 million —2004; 100 million — August 2008; 500 million — July 2010; 1.01 billion — September 2012; 1.393 billion – January 2015
  • Mobile advertising revenue – Mobile advertising revenue represented approximately 80% of advertising revenue for the fourth quarter of 2015, up from 69% of advertising revenue in the fourth quarter of 2014.
  • Revenue – Revenue for the full year 2015 was $17.93 billion, an increase of 44% year-over-year.
  • Income from operations – Income from operations for the full year 2015 was $6.23 billion.
  • Net income – Net income for the full year 2015 was $3.69 billion.
  • Free cash flow – Free cash flow for the full year 2015 was $6.08 billion.
  • Facebook owns Instagram (bought for $1billion), Occulus Rift (for $2 billion) and WhatsApp (purchase price of $19 billion).


Twitter facts

  • Twitter has a truckload of cash in reserves at $3.5 billion, and at the current burn rate will be around for another 412 years (according to USA Today).
  • 320 million monthly active users
  • 500 million tweet are sent per day
  • 1 billion unique visits monthly to sites embedded in tweets
  • 80% active users on mobile
  • 79% of accounts outside of US


Instagram facts

  • Instagram has now passed Twitter in the user count.
  • Instagram has 420 million users
  • Users share 70 million photos a day
  • Instagram is considered the most important social network by American teens than any other network at 32% vs 24% for Twitter and Facebook at 14%.
  • Facebook’s bought Instagram for $1 billion on April 9, 2012. At the start of 2015, it was valued at #35 billion.


WhatsApp facts

  • Just hit 1 billion users
  • 7oo million pictures get shared on the platform daily
  • 100 million new users are added daily
  • More than 100 million videos are shared daily
  • The average user send more than 1000 messages per month on WhatsApp
  • Average user checks the app 23 times per day
  • Founded in 2009 by Jan Koum and Brian Acton. It’s core philosophy is simplicity.
  • Facebook bought it for $19 billion on Valentine’s Day, 2014 after beating Google’s offer of $10 billion.



  • Snapchat launched in 2011 and today there are 100 million active daily users
  • 8,796 snapchats are sent every second
  • Snapchat is reputed to have 5% of the overall selfie market
  • 18% of all social media users in the USA use Snapchat
  • 30% of all US. millennials use the network
  • 41% of teens 13-17 use Snapchat
  • 11% of teens use snapchat more than any other platform


Google+ facts

  • There are 2.2 billion G+ profiles
  • Only 9% have any publicly posted content – that’s 198 million that published
  • 37% mentioned that those activities were comments on YouTube videos
  • Jeff Bullas observes that Google+ is attractive for its key features Hangouts.


Pinterest facts

  • Pinterest started in 2009
  • 100 million users
  • 80% are female


Blab facts

  • Blab started in 2015
  • Live streaming video app that allows up to 4 people to be the hosts
  • Viewers can comments while watching


Periscope facts

  • Periscope was launched in March, 2015
  • App that allows live video streaming from the app on your mobile phone
  • Periscope was acquired by Twitter for $86 million
  • People are watching 40 years worth of live video every day
  • (Live streaming video from the mobile took off in 2015 with the launch of Meerkat, Periscope and Blab.)


Flipboard facts

  • 72 million monthly users
  • 36 million use it every week
  • It is in more than 20 languages
  • Users flip through 8.2 billion stories a month
  • The app integrates news from media outlets from around the world and presents it in a magazine format.
    Flipboard does allow sharing, content publishing and comments.


To gain further insights on the social media trends of the day, read Jeff Bullas’ work. He compiles the facts and interpret the trends. Read his observations of these stats by clicking here: JeffBullas.com

Chris George, providing reliable PR counsel and effective advocacy. Need a trusted can-do EA or go-to writer? Call 613-983-0801 @ CG&A COMMUNICATIONS.

SM Content that Pops


Today there is just too much to read. Across the social media platforms, there is too much see.

That is why, when you get a set of eyeballs on your content, you had better ensure it leaps off the screen and pulls the reader in. It needs to offer a sensation. It needs to be very good writing. It needs to be memorable. Your content needs to pop!

Here are some suggestions to craft captivating your social media:

  • Write real good stories – interesting, topical; posts that capture the readers’ interests or make readers take a moment to think
  • Grab your readers’ attention – with punchy headlines and subheads, pull quotes and an interesting graphic; use all tactics to first capture their senses
  • Package and re-package – be consistent and persuasive in delivering your key messages; make your storyline compelling; and, re-package and re-post materials
  • Deliver multimedia – enrich your printed word with images, video and audio where possible; create graphics – perhaps an infographic or a stylized pull quote

An average reader might spend only seconds on your page to determine whether they will invest any more time in reading your content. Even then, in a few seconds, if the content is not engaging, they will click elsewhere. There must be a lot at play if you are to attract a reader through your piece.

For more tips on writing good social media content, By George Journal has many writing tips in their archives. Click: Tagged “writing”

2016 By George editorial mission

Through the years By George Journal has offered ideas and background on effective PR and GR tactics as well as the craft of writing. This body of work is an extension of our company’s forte – delivering reliable, strategic advocacy advice and exceptional writing services.

And to add some levity to the Journal we pepper each month with remarkable quotes and humourous pieces for use in our readers’ workplace and social settings.

Each year, we take up an issue to feature in this space – last year it was federal politics and the election campaign, and in years prior we have featured everything from “the cost of big government” to “what is the essence of quality writing?”

cyborgs_pics_01For 2016, the By George Journal has set as its editorial mission an exploration of the changing dynamics of effective communications for organizations and groups who wish to have their issues heard. How do you best convey something relevant and memorable in our daily maelstrom of media images and information? Consider:

  • For decision-makers, our world is spinning much faster with the accelerated flow of information 24/7.
  • Social media is evolving and content developers and IT managers are taking the place of wordsmiths and researchers.
  • The interplay between making a favourable first impression and making your case has become a key focus for everything communicated.

All of these discussions are up for inspection through this year. We hope our readers may gain insight into what it means to communicate effectively in our super-charged, wired world. (Given our bent for words and wordsmithing, you might expect to hear a lament or two through the year.)

By George will be carrying this discussion to our Twitter and Facebook feeds as well, so we hope followers will consider joining the dialogue.

All the best through 2016! We wish you a prosperous year!

Campaign Success and the Internet

Here is Google’s Colin McKay (head of GR for Google Canada) take on the role of the Internet in election campaigns these days:

“The Internet is outstripping what would traditionally be considered tactical media.”

McKay’s observations come from Google research data that shows both the public’s interest in political websites and the shared social experience is having a significant impact on the way Parties campaign and how Canadians engage in campaigns.

Here are the numbers:

  • 87% of Canadian households have Internet access.
  • Canadians spend 41.3 hours online per month.
  • Canadians now watch 28.9 hours of Internet video each week, surpassing television (which sits at 28.8 hours/week) for the first time.
  • Canadians are ranked second in the world for YouTube video viewing.
  • People look to the Internet for information on an election, candidate and issues 14.7 times leading up to election day.

It used to be that the Party and/or candidate’s website was an important element to inform voters within the last 72 hours of a campaign. However, McKay’s numbers suggest, a Party’s and candidate’s on-line presence is paramount to their success. An effective on-line strategy is a must-have and good, compelling content must be prepared from the start, and maintained throughout the campaign.

Bottom line: the Internet is the primary resource for voters’ information and has become the most important media weapon in any campaign’s strategy.

The Selfie – a mental disorder


The ‘selfie’ is now officially a mental disorder as confirmed by the American Psychiatric Association (APA).

Many people have already suspected ‘selfie’ as a serious mental disorder. Those theories are now confirmed by the APA. ‘Selfies’ are officially classified as a mental disorder!

The APA announced this vital information at its recent annual board of directors meeting in Chicago! The APA decided to named the disorder as “selfitis”.

The official definition of Selfitis is scientifically defined as an obsessive compulsive desire to snap several photos of one’s self and post the photos on social media as a way to make up for the lack of self-esteem and to fill a big gap in intimacy.

The APA classified the disorder into three levels

  • Borderline selfitis: snapping several photos of one’s self at least 3 times a day but not exactly posting them on social media
  • Acute selfitis: snapping several photos of one’s self at least 3 times a day and posting each of the photos taken on the camera on to social media
  • Chronic selfitis: uncontrollable desire and urge to snap many photos of one’s self round the clock and posting the photos on social media more than 6 times a day.

The APA has no current cure for the disorder. However, temporary treatment is available. Such temporary treatment includes Cognitive Behavioral Therapy also known as CBT. For those that are low on income, there is good news. CBT is currently coveted by Obamacare.

Here is an interesting aside. After the APA classifying ‘selfie’ as a mental disorder, large group of members of the medical community quickly began to criticize the APA’s use of the term ‘selfitis.’ They claimed and argues that the suffix ‘itis’ refers to a condition in which some form of inflammation of a body part or system occurs. Example: Bronchitis is and inflammation of the bronchial passages in the lungs. Tonsillitis is an inflammation of the tonsils, etc. The medical community argued and believed that the correct word, or term, for the ‘addiction’ should be “selfism’ just as alcoholism; the addiction to alcohol. The APA came back and was extremely quick to defend its choice for the term ‘selfitis’ claiming that the newly classified disorder was an ‘inflammation of one’s ego.’

So, believe it or not!! Our source is the website Soloreads – click here.

(ed. – Go ahead and forward this news… we expect there are likely many people who come to mind who would find this humourous.)

25 favourite quotes on the Internet

  • There’s a statistical theory that if you gave a million monkeys typewriters and set them to work, they’d eventually come up with the complete works of Shakespeare. — Anonymous
  • Thanks to the Internet, we now know this isn’t true. — Ian Hart
  • Getting information off the Internet is like taking a drink from a fire hydrant. — Mitchell Kapor
  • The Internet is becoming the town square for the global village of tomorrow. — Bill Gates
  • The Internet is the first thing that humanity has built that humanity doesn’t understand, the largest experiment in anarchy that we have ever had. — Eric Schmidt
  • It shouldn’t be too much of a surprise that the Internet has evolved into a force strong enough to reflect the greatest hopes and fears of those who use it. — Denise Caruso
  • Describing the Internet as the Network of Networks is like calling the Space Shuttle, a thing that flies. — John Lester.
  • Nowadays, anyone who cannot speak English and is incapable of using the Internet is regarded as backward. — Al-Waleed bin Talal
  • Looking at the proliferation of personal web pages on the Net, it looks like very soon everyone on Earth will have 15 megabytes of fame. — M.G. Sriram
  • Internet: absolute communication, absolute isolation. — Paul Carvel
  • Give a person a fish and you feed them for a day; teach that person to use the Internet and they won’t bother you for weeks. Internet is so big, so powerful and pointless that for some people it is a complete substitute for life. — Andrew Brown
  • [The Internet,] A Superhighway through the Wasteland? — Mitchell Kapor and Jerry Berman.
    The net’s a cross between an elephant and a white elephant sale: it never forgets, and it’s always crap. – Nemo
  • The Internet is the most powerful magnifier of slack ever invented. – author unknown
  • The Internet is the trailer park for the soul. — Marilyn Manson
  • A journey of a thousand sites begins with a single click. — author unknown
  • The Internet is the Viagra of big business. –Jack Welch
  • The Internet is like a gold-rush; the only people making money are those who sell the pans. — Will Hobbs
  • Spending an evening on the World Wide Web is much like sitting down to a dinner of Cheetos. Two hours later your fingers are yellow and you’re no longer hungry, but you haven’t been nourished.” — Cliff Stoll
  • The Internet is the world’s largest library. It’s just that all the books are on the floor. — John Allen Paulos
  • Usenet is like a herd of performing elephants with diarrhea — massive, difficult to redirect, awe-inspiring, entertaining, and a source of mind- boggling amounts of excrement when you least expect it. — Gene Spafford
  • Information on the Internet is subject to the same rules and regulations as conversation at a bar. — George Lundberg
  • Hooked on Internet? Help is a just a click away. — author unknown
  • During my service in the United States Congress, I took the initiative in creating the Internet. — Al Gore
  • If Al Gore invented the Internet, I invented spell check. — Dan Quayle

(ed. – This list of great quotes was compiled years ago and first appeared in the By George Journal is 2009.)

10 Facts on Mobile Marketing

With the dramatic increase in smartphone and tablet use, marketers are realizing that mobile is a key opportunity to engage with customers.  Consider these 10 statistics.


1. The open rate of SMS is 98 percent compared with 22 percent for emails. (Source: Venture Beat).

2. When compared to e-mails, text messages are proven to be 8 times more effective at engaging customers. (Source: Cellit)

3. Seven (7) in 10 mobile browser searches lead to action within an hour — 40 percent of those searches are on tablets and 60 percent on smartphones. (Source: iAcquire)

4. Nine (9) out of 10 smartphone shoppers used their devices to buy products while at a brick-and-mortar store. (Source: emarketer.com)

5. Mobile marketing ad spend grew more than 100 percent in 2013. (Source: Mobile Marketing Watch)

6. More than 4 in 10 – 43 percent – of customers are more likely to make a purchase when mobile offers are part of an orchestrated campaign that unfolds over time across multiple channels. (Source: Responsys)

7. Nearly two-thirds of consumers subscribed to mobile marketing indicate that they have made a purchase as a result of receiving a highly relevant mobile message. (Source: Responsys)

8. A solid majority 70 percent of consumers found all types of push notifications, including order updates and location-based messages, to be valuable. (Source: Responsys)

9. More than two-thirds – 68 percent of consumers – who have downloaded a brand’s app have enabled push notifications. (Source: Responsys)

10. Last year, an estimated 54 million consumers in the U.S. used smartphone coupons and in is noteworthy that these mobile offers are redeemed 10x more frequently than print offers. (Source: eMarketer)

With these compelling stats, the key message is “go mobile.””


Current social media trends

The websource Social Media Examiner released a compilation of study data that provides a picture of current social media trends all businesses and organizations should be aware of when making decisions on their sm strategy. For a quick 5-minute scan of the trends, here is the data provided by the SME’s post:

  • Total social commerce sales that could be tracked to social networks hit $3.30 billion through 2014, up 26% from 2013’s $2.62 billion, which is quite a leap. Overall traffic to retailer websites originating from social networks ticked up 7%.
  • Christmas 2014 and Internet sites are the number-one place consumers go to buy gifts in US. In 2015, Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest (and even Amazon.com) are busy developing buy-type buttons and promotions to help marketers track sales directly to the platform.
  • March 2015 US study reveals that mobile access to the Internet has quadrupled over the past four years, and desktop has risen 37%. The study also found that the predominant Internet activity on mobile was social networking. 31% of all traffic to the top 10 digital sites was mobile-only visitation (top three are Google, Yahoo and Facebook).
  • 44% of Americans now are listening to streaming audio. Monthly audio podcast consumption grew from approximately 39 million monthly users in 2014 to approximately 46 million in 2015, an increase of 18%.
  • 87% of podcast sponsors are mid-tier, dot.com companies selling web-based services (subscription) or ecommerce products (Dollar Shave Club). One-third of the podcasts had no sponsors at all, indicating that the host was most likely selling his or her own products or services.
  • Move to mobile – and Facebook still dominates the sm narrative. Facebook not only became the provider of 61% of all social logins, but also makes up 72% of all ecommerce social logins. Facebook’s 61% stretches far ahead of Google+’s second runner-up status at 22%.
  • 70% of Facebook’s users engage with the site daily. That number increased 7% from 2013, and beat Instagram’s daily user number of 49%.


For instructive commentary, we suggest reading the article in its entirety:
Social Media Marketing Trends Gaining Traction in 2015: New Research


It’s @ByGeorgeJournal for #quotes

Twitter-LogoOur Twitter feed – @ByGeorgeJournal – offers daily quotes to inspire and motivate followers in their workplaces and with their daily activities. However, we must state that we ourselves gain a great deal of thoughtful inspiration from some remarkable people who regularly share their favourite quotes. Here is a list of 50 + quotes from our feed in the past few weeks along with a list of people By George RT’ed.

Enjoy the quotes and, if you are looking for more positive influences in your life, consider following the people listed below.

Quotes On Motivation

  • “Become a possibilitarian. No matter how dark things seem to be or actually are, raise your sights and see possibilities.” – Norman Vincent Peale
  • “Perseverance is not a long race; it is many short races one after the other.” – Walter Elliot
  • “There is real magic in enthusiasm. It spells the difference between mediocrity and accomplishment.” – Norman Vincent Peale
  • “There is no passion to be found playing small, in settling for a life that is less than you are capable of living.” – Nelson Mendela
  • “We have to do the best we can. This is our sacred human responsibility.” – Albert Einstein
  • “I hated every minute of training, but I said, “Don’t quit. Suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion.”” – Muhammad Ali
  • “A hero is someone who understands the responsibility that comes with his freedom.” – Bob Dylan
  • “To avoid criticism say nothing, do nothing, be nothing.” – Aristotle
  • “Hope is the denial of reality.” – Margaret Weis
  • “I am not bound to win, but I am bound to be true. I am not bound to succeed, but I am bound to live up to what light I have.” – Abraham Lincoln
  • “The more I think of it, the more I realize there are no answers. Life is to be lived.” – Marilyn Monroe
  • “A man without a purpose is like a ship without a rudder.” – Thomas Carlyle
  • “What a man can be, he must be.” – Abraham Maslow
  • “Realize deeply that the present moment is all you ever have.” — Eckhart Tolle
  • “Go as far as you can see; when you get there, you’ll be able to see farther.” – J. P. Morgan
  • “It is our choices that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.” – J.K Rowling
  • “Always do more than is required of you.” – George S. Patton
  • “The shortest answer is doing the thing.” – Ernest Hemingway


Inspirational Quotes

  • “Anything less than everything is not enough.” – Prayer for Faith
  • “I shut my eyes in order to see.” – Paul Gauguin
  • “The quality of your thinking determines the quality of your life.” – A.R. Bernard
  • “Each of us has a fire in our hearts for something. It’s our goal in life to find it & keep it lit.” – Mary Lou Retton
  • “If you get, give. If you learn, teach.” – Maya Angelou
  • “Life is a gift, and it offers us the privilege, opportunity, and responsibility to give something back by becoming more.” – Anthony Robbins
  • “You can’t live a perfect day without doing something for someone who will never be able to repay you.” – John Wooden
  • “Treat people as if they were what they should be, and you help them become what they are capable of becoming.” – Goethe
  • “Unease, anxiety, tension, stress, worry – all forms of fear – are caused by too much future & not enough presence.” – Eckhart Tolle
  • “At the end of every hard day, people find some reason to believe.” – Bruce Springsteen
  • “Just let awareness have its way with you completely.” – Henry David Thoreau
  • “Life has its own hidden forces which you can only discover by living.” – Soren Kierkegaard
  • “Kindness is an everyday byproduct of all the great virtues.” – KristaTippett
  • “If you learn to appreciate more of what you already have, you will find yourself having more to appreciate.” – Michael Angier
  • “We either make ourselves miserable, or we make ourselves happy. The amount of work is the same.” – Carlos Castaneda
  • “Learn how to be happy with what you have while you pursue all that you want.” – Jim Rohn
  • “Most of us are just about as happy as we make up our minds to be.” – Abraham Lincoln
  • “There is no end. There is no beginning. There is only the infinite passion of life.” – Federico Fellini
  • “The quieter you become, the more you can hear.” – Ram Dass


Some Other Great Quotes

  • “The art of living is more like wrestling than dancing.” – Marcus Aurelius
  • “Because of your smile, you make life more beautiful.” – Thich Nhat Hanh
  • “In giving you are throwing a bridge across the chasm of your solitude.” – Saint-Exupéry, Antoine de
  • “Our chief want is someone who will inspire us to be what we know we could be.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
  • “There is something even more valuable to civilization than wisdom, and that is character.” – H. L. Mencken
  • “You cannot dream yourself into a character: you must hammer and forge yourself into one.” – Henry D. Thoreau
  • “Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.” – Martin Luther King Jr.
  • “When you want to help people, you tell them the truth. When you want to help yourself, you tell them what they want to hear.” – Thomas Sowell
  • “Treat a man as he is & he will remain as he is. Treat a man as he can & should be & he will become as he can & should be.” – Goethe
  • “Don’t tell people how to do things, tell them what do and let them surprise you with their results.” – George S. Patton
  • “Nothing strengthens the judgment and quickens the conscience like individual responsibility.” – Elizabeth Cady Stanton
  • “Consistency is the last refuge of the unimaginative.” – Oscar Wilde
  • “Get your facts first, and then you can distort them as much as you please.” – Mark Twain
  • “Art is the elimination of the unnecessary.” – Pablo Picasso
  • “All good writing is swimming under water and holding your breath.” – F. Scott Fitzgerald
  • “The easiest thing to do on earth is not write.” – William Goldman


Here are the wonderful people who shared many of these thoughts. We highly recommend you consider following these Twitter accounts:


Follow @ByGeorgeJournal for #quotes to #inspire & #motivate

Attention please (put the phone down)

A recently released study by Microsoft shows that digital lifestyles are decreasing Canadian attention spans. Microsoft asks: with news reduced to 140 characters and conversations whittled down to emojis, how is this affecting the way consumers see and interact with their worlds?

The most alarming finding in the study is that our minds are easily diverted – to the point that any sustained concentration for the average Canadian is becoming increasingly difficult. The study found that the average attention span of humans has decreased to eight seconds, which is one second shorter than that of a goldfish. This average attention span of humans in 2000 was 12 seconds – so in a little more than a decade, our ability to remain attentive has decreased 33%.

Microsoft’s study found that people (or Canadians at least) are more easily distracted in the presence of devices with screens. “Digital lifestyles affect the ability to remain focused for extended periods of time. Canadians with more digital lifestyles (those who consume more media, are multi-screeners, social-media enthusiasts or earlier adopters of technology) struggle to focus in environments where prolonged attention is needed,” the report said.

This is especially true for the younger generation. Here are shocking statistics for persons age 18 to 24:

  • 77 % reach for their phone when nothing is occupying their attention
  • 52% check their phones at least every 30 minutes
  • 73% check their phone as the last thing they do before going to bed
  • 79% use their phone or another device while watching TV
  • 74% watch TV programs via streamed video rather than live
  • 87% watch a number of program episodes back-to-back

There are a lot of interesting observations and data found in this Microsoft study, a lot to give you pause (before you next reach for your phone). Here are a few links to read more details – that is, if you can keep your attention any longer…

NDTV report


Yahoo News


Our Twitter and Facebook daily missives

The By George Journal delivers daily missives both on Twitter and Facebook. Our tweets and posts are forwarded to inspire and motivate our followers. They are positive urgings to remain determined and focus on your day’s objectives and to be aware of those things that make you complete and give you purpose.

Consider joining us on Facebook or follow our daily tweets. Herein we provide you an example of our most recent 25 favourite tweets and a selection of 5 FB posts from this past month.


  1. “Our chief want is someone who will inspire us to be what we know we could be.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
  2. “Go as far as you can see; when you get there, you’ll be able to see farther.” – J. P. Morgan
  3. “You cannot dream yourself into a character: you must hammer and forge yourself into one.” – Henry D. Thoreau
  4. “It is our choices that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.” – J.K Rowling
  5. “Always do more than is required of you.” – George S. Patton
  6. “Courage is being scared to death – but saddling up anyway.” – John Wayne
  7. “Discipline is the foundation upon which all success is built. Lack of discipline inevitably leads to failure.” – Jim Rohn
  8. “Consistency is the last refuge of the unimaginative.” – Oscar Wilde
  9. “Perseverance is not a long race; it is many short races one after the other.” – Walter Elliot
  10. “Treat a man as he is & he will remain as he is. Treat a man as he can & should be & he will become as he can & should be.” – Goethe
  11. “Nothing strengthens the judgment and quickens the conscience like individual responsibility.”- Elizabeth Cady Stanton
  12. “Learn how to be happy with what you have while you pursue all that you want.” Jim Rohn
  13. “Your only obligation in any lifetime is to be true to yourself.” – Richard Bach
  14. “The privilege of a lifetime is being who you are.” – Joseph Campbell
  15. “The quieter you become, the more you can hear.” – Ram Dass
  16. “The art of living is more like wrestling than dancing.” – Marcus Aurelius
  17. “There is no end. There is no beginning. There is only the infinite passion of life.” Federico Fellini
  18. To avoid criticism say nothing, do nothing, be nothing. – Aristotle
  19. “Don’t tell people how to do things, tell them what do and let them surprise you with their results.” – George S. Patton
  20. “Get your facts first, and then you can distort them as much as you please.” – Mark Twain
  21. “We either make ourselves miserable, or we make ourselves happy. The amount of work is the same.” – Carlos Castaneda
  22. Most of us are just about as happy as we make up our minds to be. – Abraham Lincoln
  23. What is most important is to find peace and share it with others. – Thich Nhat Hanh
  24. “At the end of every hard day, people find some reason to believe.” – Bruce Springsteen
  25. “You can’t live a perfect day without doing something for someone who will never be able to repay you.”- John Wooden

Here are a sampling of our Facebook posts.






Follow By George Journal on Twitter and on Facebook.



Facebook as an election tool

A recent presentation to politicos at an Ottawa conference reveals just how important Facebook will become in the fight for public support and your vote in the up-coming federal election campaign.

At the Manning Center Networking Conference Facebook session, politicos were instructed on how to best use the Facebook platform in the coming months. Many MPs already strategically use Facebook, but Canadians can likely expect all Parties and candidates to be using this platform to swing and/or re-enforce their support.

Facebook already is a strategy tool being wielded to win hearts and votes south of the border. In a recent Washington Post article, “How Facebook plans to become one of the most powerful tools in politics”, the power and attractiveness of this social media platform is identified.

     Political campaigns are obsessed with two things: Telling every possible voter exactly what they want to hear in order to get them to the polls and cast the “right” vote, and telling them that message for as close to zero dollars as possible.

     It’s not a surprise, then, that Facebook has focused its social-Sauron eye on the world of politics. Already a focal point of political activity (of varying quality), the site has shifted its toolset to let campaigns target extremely specific audiences with very specific messages, for prices somewhat north of zero dollars. The end goal for the company seems clear: Replace, as much as possible, expensive, blanketed television advertising with much more immediate, much more specific ads appearing in users’ feeds — and then cash a whole lot of checks.


Here are some key points from the Manning Center Network Conference session, “How Facebook can help power your campaigns” with Facebook strategists Kevin Chan and Kaite Harbath.

  • FB recommends candidates use pages rather than profiles.
  • Choose a lasting page name & URL (not campaign, office or year specific).
  • Use FB Pages as a source not a destination.
  • Understand how to use Page Insights and develop informed content and ads with information gleaned from it.
  • Creativity and authenticity are rewarded. Keep content succinct, timely and use visuals.
  • FB says “post engaging content.” Short, pithy, interesting. 15 seconds is the sweet spot.
  • Use video – but keep it short. Remember the videos are watched on mobile devices – so short, to the point – and no need for high end production. Raw footage is okay.
  • Behind the scenes videos do well, particularly from candidate POV.
  • Post updates from political and personal life. Bring people along on the campaign trail.
  • Drive event sign-ups. Highlight policy.
  • Make your content social. Tag people. (“It used to be location, location, location. Now it’s people, people, people.”)
  • Build a community. Host live Q&A sessions. Regular engagement creates new advocates on scale.
  • FB recommends regular Q&A sessions with candidates.
  • FB is becoming a platform for breaking news.
  • Most politician advertise in the FB news feed.
  • Build a Page fan base to connect with virtually 100% of voters through a friend (network of networks)

So, as you enjoy your news feed in the coming months, take note of the political messaging that is increasingly creeping into your FB experience.



Escaping Facebook’s Blackhole

Facebook is a tremendous social media tool – perhaps the best tool to be ever developed. People can spend hours on their Facebook each day – socializing. However, this on-line activity can also lead to an addiction, as people get lost in the FB’s black hole, clicking through both posts, sponsored pages and, ultimately, ads and commercial offerings.

Joseph Hindy recently wrote about this destructive FB obsession in a great article posted on @LifeHack. He listed 10 things that will happen once you stop checking Facebook all the time. Here is Hindy’s insightful list.

1. You’ll Become less Braindead.
The term “Braindead” is used in this context when you are staring at a screen ignoring everything and everyone around you. If you get off of Facebook, many new opportunities could arise when you are not catching up with all your “friends”.

2. You’ll Get more Work Done.
“Checking Facebook” really means you are going to scroll through posts for potentially a half an hour. If people could get as much time in working and learning as checking social-media websites, the entire human race would be geniuses!

3. You Can Focus on Other Things.
Being on Facebook takes a lot of time. If you start being more productive with your time… you could spend more time with real friends, walk, bike, or run. Without the addiction of updates, you could put your mind to better things.

4. You Can Find Out Who Your Real Friends Are.
Someone who spends a minute liking all your posts and commenting on all your updates looks as if they really care about you, which of course in most cases is wrong. Hanging out as well as doing physical activities with a legitimate friend is a lot better according to the true meaning of friend.

5. You Will Learn the Word “Like” Has No Meaning.
Liking things on Facebook is no longer a matter of actually liking the post. It’s an obligatory action to show that you have seen the post and acknowledge its existence. The “like” button basically states you have seen the post, therefore, making the button useless in real life.

6. You Will Feel More Accomplished.
Constantly dealing with the never ending posts can be somewhat emotionally draining. Doing things like gardening, running, or putting in a load of laundry can make you feel like you have actually accomplished something.

7. You’ll Get Rid of the Stalkers.
Practically everyone who uses Facebook has a stalker… It is all there to see, your home life as well as your social life. If you leave Facebook, you’ll be totally immune to those kind of creepy people.

8. You Will Actually Feel Better About Yourself.
Studies have shown that Facebook makes you feel bad about yourself. When you post a status nobody likes or you find rude comments on something you posted, it can be quite depressing. Getting off Facebook will release the weight of depression from a couple of pointless posts.

9. You Will Feel Better About the Things You Own.
Studies have shown that people are jealous about how popular their friend is in social media. There jealous about comments, posts, etc. Facebook is an excellent place to brag about what you have or what you have done, so getting off of it can release the pressure of “keeping up with the Jones’s”.

10. You Will Realize That All You Ever Were To Facebook Was a Piece of Data That Viewed Advertisements.
We have no doubt that there are people on Facebook who legitimately care about you. However, we also have no doubt that Facebook itself couldn’t care less about you. Your job on Facebook is to buy games, view advertisements, and make new friends so they can get caught up in Facebook too. All you are is a piece of data that is earning Facebook money.

To read the full article by Joseph Hindy, click here.

 (ed. – This article was first published in By George Journal in November 2014. After spending a weekend watching my older son lost in his FB stream, I was prompted to bring this excellent advice forward.)

The genesis and explosion of the Net

Alec Scott has written a great expose of Vint Cerf – the father of the Internet – in the recent ROB magazine. Here are some facts that you should know about the man and about the modern phenomenon known as the Internet.

What is most striking about reading this magazine piece is the realization that the genesis of the Net is but 40 years old – and the rise of this technology began only 30 years ago. (So, that means anyone under the age of 30 has no idea how man existed without the Internet!)


  • In 1975 Vint Cerf led a working group at Stanford University that developed a language to enable inter-network communication – the birth of Transmission Control Protocol (TCP/IP).
  • Earliest development of the TCP/IP language occurred with primitive wired network developed by scientists with U.S. military funds. Cerf once said of TCP/IP’s early success, “To borrow a phrase, now the Internet could go where no network had gone before.”
  • Not until ten years after the fact did a Boston tech company become the first to register a domain name on this new network of networks. Only five other organizations sought a home there in 1985. In other words, in 1985, there were a total of 6 domain names in the world.
  • Here are the numbers of domain names worldwide over the course of the last 30 years: 1985 there were 6; 1990 there were 1,402; 2000 there were 21 million; 2005 there were 46 million; 2010 there were 91 million and in 2012 there were 106 million domain names.
  • Cerf’s wonderment in the Internet persists: “Imagine, the phone can take an image of a menu written in another language and translate it into yours”—he also grasps common worries. “I’m interested in the Internet of Things, and we have lots of smart-home technology—a Nest Thermostat, a sensor that gathers information about heating, humidity and lighting in each room of our house. That said, the data collected about who’s at home, where they are…could be abused by bad guys.”
  • Cerf comments on current think about artificial intelligence: “Some fairly notable people have worried that artificial intelligence is becoming a hazard to humanity. But most AI is being used as a co-operative measure, not a coercive one. Isaac Asimov’s laws of robotics haven’t been codified, it is true, but they are generally being observed.”
  • One example of human-machine co-operation Cerf cites is the Google Glass: “The Glass brings computers into ordinary human discourse, with machines hearing and seeing what you are hearing and seeing, and becoming more of a party…participating in the conversation.”
  • Alec Scott asked Cerf “Did he ever think it would go this big, this quickly—this, well, boldly?” He replied: “No. So much about it has been surprising. The explosive adoption of the World Wide Web protocols. The growth of hacking, phishing and other hazards. The hypergolic confluence of the smartphone and the Internet. Some of it, we imagined, yes, but much of it—no.”
  • Cerf is now 71 years old and is Google’s Chief Internet Evangelist as well as consulting with politicians and policymakers around the world on laws affecting the Net.


Alec Scott’s full ROB article can be read here:
“Internet pioneer Vint Cerf on the future of technology”

Poignant quotes via Twitter

Here are some FAV “poignant” quotes from the last two weeks (as found on our Twitter feed).

  • “Your future depends on many things, but mostly on you.” – Frank Tyger
  • “Have a goal, make a plan, and take action! Stop allowing your day-to-day life to be clouded by busy nothings.” – Steve Maraboli
  • “I’d rather be an optimist and a fool than a pessimist and right.” – Albert Einstein
  • “The best way to dispel negative thoughts is to require that they have a purpose.” – Robert Brault
  • “Do whatever you do intensely.” – Robert Henri
  • “To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
  • “Write it on your heart that every day is the best day in the year.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
  • “You owe it to all of us to get on with what you’re good at ” – Auden
  • “It matters if you just don’t give up.” – Stephen Hawking
  • “We have to do the best we can. This is our sacred human responsibility.” – Albert Einstein
  • “Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value.” – Albert Einstein
  • “Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.” – Anais Nin
  • “Do you want to know who you are? Don’t ask. Act! Action will delineate and define you.” – Thomas Jefferson
  • “There must be more to life than having everything.” – Maurice Sendakb

By George provides a stream of inspirational and motivation tweets daily – along with our tweets and links on the Ottawa political scene. Join By George on Twitter – @ByGeorgeJournal


A social media manager can make a difference

Investment in social media is a necessity – not a luxury any longer. Businesses and interest groups today must integrate their social media efforts with an effective content strategy. Businesses must use their social media in terms of lead generation, referral traffic, and increasing their bottom line in sales. Organizations and interest groups must use their social media to raise awareness to their priorities and to profile and position ideas.

The benefits of an active social media outreach are many:

  • branding – both reputation management and positioning
  • raising awareness of brand(s) and issues
  • word-of-mouth advertising / promotion
  • increasing loyalty and trust with active engagement
  • improving audience reach and influence

To maximize on-line success, it might prove useful for businesses and organizations to employ someone to manage social media activities. Success with social media is all about good, engaging content. (Given this imperative for quality content, it may be startling to know that only 9% of American US companies employ a full-time blogger – even though 62% of marketers blog or plan to blog in 2013.)

A social media manager can make a difference in a number of tangible ways. A skilled communicator can be expected to:

  • craft and ensure your business will communicate in a unified voice — A social media manager meets with different stakeholders within and outside your company to create an effective social media message. The manager will ensure your message is consistent over your various social media platforms.
  • develop and track campaigns — A social media manager can create and deploy promotional campaigns – and be responsible to adjust your efforts depending on what works and what doesn’t.
  • manage your online dialogue — A social media manager can orchestrate your on-line activities; listening and responding to your customers and on-line audience. Managers can also be responsible to reach out to news outlets and bloggers who can help your business grow.
  • save time — Effective on-line activity and proper business strategy execution takes time. Having people contribute to a social media process without defined responsibilities and goals won’t help your marketing efforts. A dedicated social media management can ensure your on-line activity is done right.

Surf through the By George Journal articles tagged “social media” for an idea of how this activity might enhance your communications efforts.

As a last thought, consider that social media managers should not only execute social media activities, but they must also understand all facets of your business or organization. They should know what is integral to your success; the objectives and trends that are critical; and, how to best interact with your customers and targeted audiences. Think of social media managers as your ambassadors as they are often the first impression one has of your business or organization. They are more than Internet whizzes – social media managers are your front line communicators and issue managers.


FAV quotes to motivate & inspire

Twitter-LogoThrough each day, By George provides motivational and inspiration tweets for its followers. Here are 25 of our latest favourite quotes from the past month – found on @ByGeorgeJournal

  • “The poor, the unsuccessful, the unhappy, the unhealthy are the ones who use the word tomorrow the most.” – Robert Kiyosaki
  • “Perseverance is not a long race; it is many short races one after the other.” – Walter Elliot
  • “Gratitude turns what we have into enough.” – Melody Beattie
  • “A hero is someone who understands the responsibility that comes with his freedom.” – Bob Dylan
  • “There is nothing like a dream to create the future.”- Victor Hugo
  • “Life isn’t about getting and having, it’s about giving and being.” – Kevin Kruse
  • “We can throw stones, complain about them, stumble on them, climb over them, or build with them.” – William Arthur Ward
  • “Anything that is of value in life only multiplies when it is given.” – Deepak Chopra
  • “Find the good. It’s all around you. Find it, showcase it & you’ll start believing in it.” – Jesse Owens
  • “Do you want to know who you are? Don’t ask. Act! Action will delineate and define you.” – Thomas Jefferson #Quote
  • “If you want to be happy, be.” – Leo Tolstoy
  • “Some people drink from the fountain of knowledge, others just gargle.” – Robert Anthony
  • “Be a life long or short, its completeness depends on what it was lived for.” – David Starr Jordan
  • “Millions saw the apple fall, but Newton was the one who asked why.” – Bernard Baruch
  • “Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.” – Anais Nin
  • “The shortest answer is doing the thing.” – Ernest Hemingway
  • “Give up defining yourself to yourself or to others. You won’t die. You will come to life.” – Eckhart Tolle
  • “When you’ve got something to prove, there’s nothing greater than a challenge.” – Terry Bradshaw
  • “What matters in life is not what happens to you but what you remember and how you remember it.” – Gabriel Garcia Márquez
  • “We are not creatures of circumstance; we are creators of circumstance.” – Benjamin Disraeli
  • “Perseverance is the hard work you do after you get tired of doing the hard work you already did.” – Newt Gingrich
  • “Happiness depends on what you can give, not on what you can get.” – Swami Chinmayananda
  • “To accomplish great things, we must not only act, but also dream; not only plan, but also believe.” – Anatole France
  • “Life is shorter than you think. You’re capable of more than you believe. Live accordingly.” – Umair Haque
  • “Great things are not done by impulse, but by a series of small things brought together.” – Vincent Van Gogh

Join By George Journal for daily tweets on Twitter.


By George, join our dialogue!



  Do what you love. Know your own bone;

  gnaw at it, bury it, unearth it, and

  gnaw it still. – Henry David Thoreau


Our By George editorial mission is to share provocative thoughts on the pages of this journal, on our Facebook page, and with tweets of quotes and quirky political observations. We connect daily to project inspirational thought, motivation – and fun into our readers’ days.  Visit the pages of this By George Journal regularly and connect with us on Twitter and Facebook.


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Provoking Thought. Providing Thoughtfulness.



20 FAV tweets (#quotes)

Twitter-LogoHere are 20 of our favourite quotes from the last few weeks, taken from our By George Journal Twitter stream….


  • “The ultimate value of life depends upon awareness and the power of contemplation rather than upon mere survival.” – Aristotle
  • “Great things are not done by impulse, but by a series of small things brought together.” – Vincent Van Gogh
  • “It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.” – Aristotle
  • “We are terrorized and flattened by trivialities, we are eaten up by nothing.” – Bukowski
  • “The pursuit of normality is the ultimate sacrifice of potential.” – Faith Jegede
  • “Having a great intellect is no path to being happy.” – Stephen Fry
  • “When we remember we are all mad, the mysteries disappear and life stands explained.” – Mark Twain
  • “However bad life may seem, there is always something you can do, and succeed at. While there’s life, there is hope.” – Stephen Hawking
  • “Once you choose hope, anything’s possible.” – Christopher Reeve
  • “We meet no ordinary people in our lives.” – C.S. Lewis
  • “Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Wishing is not enough; we must do.” – Johann Von Goethe
  • “There is a difference between knowing the path & walking the path.” – Morpheus
  • “If the wind will not serve, take to the oars.” – Latin Proverb
  • “So long as you keep on trying, you’re a winner.” – Alex Kassan
  • “A pessimist is somebody who complains about the noise when opportunity knocks.” – Oscar Wilde
  • “Luck? I’ve never banked on it… Luck to me is something else: hard work and realizing what is opportunity and what isn’t.” – Lucille Ball
  • “Be happy in the moment, that’s enough. Each moment is all we need, not more.” – Mother Teresa
  • “Everything that has a beginning has an ending. Make your peace with that and all will be well.” – Buddha
  • “Before enlightenment, chop wood, carry water. After enlightenment, chop wood, carry water.” – Zen proverb
  • “If you are lucky enough to find a way of life you love, you have to find the courage to live it.” – John Irving

Join us on Twitter for daily provocation! Follow @ByGeorgeJournal

eCommerce Trends

eCommerce is growing exponentially, especially within the North American economy. Here are recent findings published by Gigya -Gigya’s Connected Consumer Management Suite, a company that provides strategic services to maximize profits with mobile and socially connected consumers.

  • 68% of consumers agree that shopping today is less about brands or products themselves and more about what they are feeling and needing.
  • A third of adult Internet users under 30 are getting their information from what their friends are posting on social networks rather than from traditional business homepages. (Pew Research)
  • Customer reviews are trusted 12x more than marketing descriptions.
  • 71% of consumers state that they are very concerned about online companies selling or sharing information about them without their permission.
  • 77% of online shoppers would trust businesses more if they explained how they use their personal information.
  • 40% of consumers buy more from retailers who personalize the shopping experience across channels.
  • 48% of consumers use or would like to use a smartphone to shop while in-store or on the go.
  • 45% of in-store consumers turn to social platforms on their mobile devices to influence their buying decisions.
  • Connected devices are projected to total 26 billion by 2020.

More can be read on Gigya -Gigya’s corporate blog.