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Featured on Friday

February 17, 2011

Finally A New Squibbleworld Twitter Background for the ‘New Twitter’!
Better late than never, I have finally upgraded my Twitter background so that it works with Twitter’s new(ish) layout. Do you need to upgrade your Twitter background as well? Here is an article from Mashable which includes psd templates and tips on how to design for the new Twitter layout.

Today’s useful Link – Tweet Nest – Archive Your Tweets
‘A browsable, searchable and easily customizable archive and backup for your tweets’

Explicitweb Podcast Season 2 Episode 3 – Sensible Social Networking

This is a topic that I feel strongly about, and I recommend this particular episode [direct link] of the Explicitweb Podcast to designers and users alike.

Privacy is important, and it seems that more and more recently, we have been conditioned to feel the opposite. This may be partly due to the ever-changing nature of Facebooks’s granular privacy controls, and also Mark Zuckerberg’s more recent statement that public is the new ‘social norm’.

It is disturbing to think that we now have a generation of children growing up in a time when it is considered normal to document all parts of their lives online.

Along with the immediate gratification of social media comes perceived freedom and anonymity. You may think that on a site like Facebook with over five hundred million users that you will just blend in with the crowd. This unfortunately is not always true. There are many ways in which the use of social media can have a negative impact on your life if you fail to moderate your activity online. Furthermore, in 2009 one quarter of admissions offices in America admitted that they used information gathered from both search engine and social media sites in order to ascertain whether a potential scholarship applicant was a suitable candidate for the grant.

It is now a lot easier to find personal information about people online and you need to know that most employers are aware of the usefulness of social media for the purposes of researching prospective employees. The best way to be safe on the internet while using social media? Don’t post embarrassing photos in places like Facebook. They are not always guaranteed to be private, as is shown in this article from February 2009.

Above all, be professional when you are online. Think about your brand: you always represent your brand when you are online. Try to keep your personal and private life separate. As a business owner if you must have a personal presence on social media, make sure the profile is as secure as you can possibly make it.

We can be fooled into thinking that the internet is a place where we can ‘let it all hang out’, but in reality this is not the case. The way which we use the internet has changed dramatically. As we now use various free services and web applications on the internet as a tool to enhance our personal lives, the border between the net and IRL is becoming increasingly blurred.

Furthermore, although social media services cost nothing, you may be giving away more than you think. The BBC documentary The Virtual Revolution explains how in the episode ‘The Cost of Free’:

For more information on internet safety and resources, please visit

Being professional on the web extends to other areas, including good behaviour on public communities and forums. Show other people courtesy, and be polite when commenting and critiquing work. Otherwise what was once a welcoming and creative community can quickly become a place to avoid. Take for instance John O’Nolan’s recent post on the Dribbble community – ‘Dear Dribbble, I Quit’.

More than ever now, the web is what we make it.