Socialnomics: About as Exciting as a Two Year Old Dog

ROI of Social MediaErik Qualman, the author of Socialnomics: How Social Media Transforms the Way We Live and Do Business (affiliate link), has uploaded the third version of his highly popular and viral Social Media Revolution video.

I have to admit that I was excited about this discovery… at first.

If you haven’t seen the video, check it out here, and then continue reading.

If you can’t see the video, click here or view on YouTube.

If you’re into social media marketing as much as I am, it’s easy to fall in love with a video that includes phrases like these:

  • Social Media is about Relationships
  • Social Media is about People
  • Social Media has overtaken pornography as the #1 activity on the web
  • If Facebook were a country, it’d be the world’s 3rd largest
  • The Ford Explorer launch on Facebook generated more traffic than a Super Bowl ad
  • The ROI of Social Media is Your Business Will Still Exist in 5 years

The one that bothers me, however, is this:

  • Socialnomics is here to stay

Socialnomics was first published in August of 2009, almost two years ago. Considering the rate of change in the social media world, that’s like having a two year old dog and comparing it to a two year old child. It might as well be a 14 year old book!

Although Qualman has cleverly incorporated many of the images in the video into an iPad screen, making the video feel relevant for 2011, it has actually become somewhat irrelevant, and the stats are becoming outdated.

I think it’s time to stop re-producing this video every year, and time for Erik to write a new book.

Do you agree, or do you think I’m crazy? I’d love to hear what you think.

It’s FREE! Why Are You Complaining?

The Domino ProjectI don’t get it. When offered something valuable for free, why do some people choose to complain?

Do the Work is FREE

On March 28, 2011, Seth Godin posted Changing the game: Do the Work is free for now on the website for The Domino Project. In that post, he announced that the Kindle version (affiliate link) of Steven Pressfield‘s manifesto Do the Work (affiliate link) was available for free thanks to the generous sponsorship of GE.

I loved the first book released by The Domino Project, Poke the Box (affiliate link), so naturally I ordered Do the Work at no charge. I’m sure there were thousands of others who took advantage of the free offer.

On March 30th, the following post appeared on the Amazon Kindle Facebook page:

A Kindle First: The generous folks at GE have sponsored bestselling author Steven Pressfield’s Do the Work (a powerful, memorable rant on what it means to do work that matters), making it free for you to pre-order the Kindle e-book.

Free stuff isn’t free if it’s from GE?

Exciting stuff! To my surprise, they got a lot of negative comments from their fans because of the sponsor for the book, General Electric. Only a few days earlier, GE made the news because of its $0 tax bill after posting a profit of $5.1 billion from its operations in the United States. Comments like the following were very common:

Love my Kindle, but I’m not interested in anything connected to GE right now. I’m guessing they sponsored this project in an effort to pull their reputation out of the ditch. Sorry. It’s going to take a LOT more than this.

Of course, there were others who chimed in on the conversation, noting that nobody was obligated to accept the offer of a free book sponsored by GE, which is exactly how I feel about it. Why did it need to turn political? Why couldn’t people see it for what it was – a generous sponsor stepping up to fund a great project, allowing all of us to get a great book at no cost?

How dare you hand me a free book!

It doesn’t end there. The book was released today, but not without more controversy. It seems that Amazon automatically sent the free book to some people’s Kindles! Here’s one of the early 1 star comments on the Amazon page for Do the Work:

Imagine my surprise to see this automatically on my Kindle. Not only did I NOT order it, I find it to be intrusive that Amazon would automatically upload a book to my Kindle. I don’t care if it is free, I don’t want anyone putting stuff on MY Kindle!!!

Sure, it’s a little disturbing that Amazon assumed people would want the book and forced the download on them, but c’mon people. It was free, and you can delete it! Nobody is holding a gun to your head and making you read the book.

How do you feel about these issues? Would you accept a free book that was funded by GE? Would you be upset if it appeared on your Kindle when you didn’t actually order it?

Kindle First: The generous folks at GE have sponsored bestselling author Steven Pressfield’s Do the Work (a powerful, memorable rant on what it means to do work that matters), making it free for you to pre-order the Kindle e-book.