Blast from the past: 30 TV theme songs

Here’s a list of 30 TV shows I watched growing up and their memorable opening credits and theme songs.

I’m amazed how many of these brought instant recall, residing somewhere deep inside the memory bank.

How many of these do you remember?

The quickcuts and synching were way ahead of its time.

1. Hawaii Five-0
2. Mission Impossible
3. The Professionals
4. Little House on the Prairie
5. The Waltons
6. Baretta
7. The Six Million Dollar Man
8. Fantasy Island
9. Dallas
10. Happy Days
11. S.W.A.T
12.The Streets of San Francisco
13. The High Chaparral
14. Bonanza
15. CHiPs
16. Hart to Hart
17. Cheers
18. Greatest American Hero
19. L.A. Law
20. The Equalizer
21. The Incredible Hulk

Celebrates its 50th anniversary today

22. Twilight Zone
23. WKRP in Cincinnati
24. All in the Family
25. Mork and Mindy
26. How the West Was Won
27. The Cosby Show
28. Home Improvement
29. The Brady Bunch
30. Gomer Pyle

Online journalism: Why MSM still doesn’t get it

Alfred Hermida suggests that editors and journalists in the mainstream media still see themselves as the gatekeepers and the people “formerly known as the audience” is still the audience to them:

“The space for the audience to participate in journalism is, by and large, clearly delineated. The public can send in their news tips, photos and videos, but the journalist retains a traditional gatekeeper role, deciding what is newsworthy and what isn’t. There is little room for the public to be involved in the actual making of the news — in deciding whom to interview, how to frame the story and how to produce it. Once the story is complete and published, the audience can freely comment on the final product.”

Some valid points:

1. No change in old media: “A growing body of research suggests that the advent of participatory journalism, or user-generated content (UGC), has done little to change the way the media works.”
2. Journalists still too controlling: “Journalists are seeking to maintain their position of authority and power, rather than create a more open, transparent and accountable journalistic process that seeks to work with readers.”
3. UGC seen as just as a tool for newsgathering not collaboration: “BBC staff see UGC as a part of newsgathering operations; basically, it’s a way of obtaining photos and videos, eyewitness accounts or story tips. Researchers did find some examples of BBC journalists that view it as a way to collaborate on stories, or as a shift towards networked journalism. But these views existed at the edges.”
4. Comments are seen as more work: “Comments were seen as a way to attract more visitors and increase loyalty, but these benefits were counterbalanced by problems with abusive comments, a lack of contributions, and the cost of moderation.”
5. Audience free to comment but not take part in creating: “There are very few signs that news organizations are reinventing their relationship with the audience and tapping into the participatory potential of the web to re-imagine journalism.”

Hermida’s commentary contrasts with former chairman of Dow Jones & Co Peter Kann’s piece in WSJ recently lamenting the “decline of democracy” and that “Quality Reporting Doesn’t Come Cheap”

Kann’s assertions are typical of old media titans still wanting to suckle on the cash cow of old media even while it heads to the abattoir.

Kann’s Martian analogy makes his case even more ridiculous. He says: “Indeed, a business analyst landing here from Mars logically might question why an unwieldy newsprint product, stale as soon as it rolls off the press and not updated till another sun rises, should not be free whereas the new Internet product, offering all the same news plus more and evolving as does the news around the clock, should not be worth a pretty price? An even wiser Martian might conclude that customers should be given a choice, or offered a combination, but that they should be expected to pay for both.”

Hah. I am sure any alien of superior intelligence arriving here would wonder why it took us so long to figure out that printing ink on flattened trees was far more destructive to our planet, regardless of the business considerations of setting up paywalls to supposedly save “the future of news.”

Mr Kann’s belief that the public is “the loser” from the rise of the Internet and blogs – which, in his narrow view, is all about “comment” – must be reading a different Internet. The net has brought more diversity to news as content than any other single news organisation or indeed collectives of news publishers.

And the public, Mr Kann, is now the winner on many counts – more access, interactivity, better viewpoints, clearer visuals, richer content, and the immense capacity to add, share, mould and re-distribute the news as they see fit.

The net is empowering us as a whole new generation of citizens of the world. News should be what we make of it, not what a few people want to dictate it to be behind their walled gardens and ivory towers. And this is why your empire will continue to crumble, with false prophets like Mr Kann preaching about “saving democracy”, when in truth, they only want to marginalize the many to enrich the few.

Note: Alfred Hermida blogs at

The rise of Twitter

A Burson-Marsteller July 2009 study of Fortune 100 companies surprisingly found that more companies had a presence on Twitter (54%) than on Facebook (29%).

Comparing the use of Twitter vs. Facebook vs. corporate blogs, the study states about one-fifth of Fortune 100 firms only used one of the three channels and those companies were overwhelmingly likely to choose Twitter (76%) over Facebook (14%) or blogging (10%).

Companies that used two of the three channels were most likely to have a blog plus a Twitter account (64%).

Many of the companies surveyed do not even have a blog (68 percent) but instead have embraced Twitter.

So what are these companies using Twitter for?
1. Company news updates
2. Customer service
3. Direct marketing responses
4. Promotions, deals and contests
5. Employee recruitment

Examples of companies on Twitter: @SearsDeals, @WalmartSpecials, @Lowes, @BestBuy, and @VerizonNewsroom. Many have multiple accounts eg: ATT has accounts for Small Biz, Mobile Music, News, and Job Recruitment among others.

Earlier, Compete reported that Twitter and Facebook had pretty flat months in July and August 2009.

Twitter chalked a sliver of rise in uniques of 1.27% with 23.58m visitors but a -2.99% drop in visits, down to 148.65m. Facebook had 122.22m unique visitors in August; a -0.37% drop compared to July, but it grew to 2.2b visits in the same period, rising 4.69%. MySpace, Bebo and hi5 dropped unique visitors by -6.73%, -7.68% and -15.36%, respectively.

An earlier report from comScore, states that Twitter passed a fairly big milestone in July of 50 million unique visitors worldwide, reaching 51.6 million unique visitors at the end of the month. In US visitors, Twitter grew to 21.2 million uniques from 20m in June, representing 41 percent of traffic. International visits now represents 59 percent of traffic.

Note that estimates only count traffic to whereas many users may not even go to the site and update via various popular Twitter clients ie. Tweetdeck, Twitterfeed, Twhirl, Twitterberry, Twitterrific, Twitterfon, Hootsuite and Seesmic.

Mashable: Flat month for social media
Burson-Marsteller and Fortune 100 social media study
Burston-Marsteller report on Slideshare
eMarketer: Marketers embrace Twitter over Facebook

Taking the twit out of Twitter

My recent presentation:

Top 15 Malaysian websites: comScore

In June 2009, 9.3 million people in Malaysia above age 15, spent an average of nearly 14 hours online and accessed 1,066 pages of content, according to comScore.

Top Malaysian Internet Properties in Malaysia Based on Unique Visitors

June 2009

Total Malaysia Internet Audience*, Age 15+ – Home & Work Locations
Source: comScore World Metrix

Total Unique Visitors (000) % Reach Average Minutes per Visitor
Total Internet : Total Audience 9,320 100.0 826.8
MAYBANK2U.COM 1,081 11.6 28.6
MUDAH.MY 1,068 11.5 45.9
AIRASIA.COM 834 9.0 33.2
Star Publications (M) Bhd 768 8.2 17.2
UTUSAN.COM.MY 562 6.0 22.0
BHARIAN.COM.MY 555 6.0 25.2
JOBSTREET.COM 546 5.9 20.0
701PANDUAN.COM 507 5.4 3.5
HMETRO.COM.MY 495 5.3 36.8
LOWYAT.NET 484 5.2 48.8
Digital Five 476 5.1 63.1
CIMBCLICKS.COM.MY 398 4.3 22.6
MAXIS.COM.MY 364 3.9 23.0

The figures are obviously limited and extrapolated, considering they have excluded those under 15 and “visitation from public computers such as Internet cafes or access from mobile phones or PDAs,” leaving a chunk of numbers out. The media websites claim much higher numbers of uniques than comScore. Unfortunately, comScore’s numbers are the only published monthly metrics we have in Malaysia.

comScore also ranked the most visited Internet properties in Malaysia:
1. Google: 7.1 million visitors, reaching nearly 76 percent of the online population.
2. Yahoo!: 6.4 million visitors (69 percent reach)
3. Microsoft Sites: 4.7 million visitors (50 percent reach).
4. Friendster: 3.2 million visitors
5. Facebook: 3.1 million visitors.


20 ways to measure social media ROI

Justifying your ROI for social media can be done quantitatively or qualitatively.

1. Blogs: Number of posts, visitors, comments, repeat posts of your posts.
2. Twitter: Number of followers, tweets, re-tweets, clicks to short links (use
3. YouTube: Number of views, number of embeds
4. Facebook: Number of fans, number of repost of status messages, number of views of videos, photos
5. Campaigns: Sales revs, new leads, new subscribers, traffic on landing page, conversions, number of people who filled up follow-up form, used coupon, took up offer, bought stuff, number who visited or viewed campaign, or downloaded app or widget.

6. Blog/Twitter/Facebook Comments: Positive/negative/neutral
7. Google: Do a search comparison on keywords with your competitor
8. Interaction and conversations: What are people blogging/tweeting about the campaign, product, service or company – for or against, did you learn something, solve a customer complaint, avert a crisis, find new ways to save costs or discover useful feedback for management?

Free tools to track and monitor:
09.Google Analytics
10. Google Alerts
11. Tweetbeep
12. Social Mention
13. Xinu
14. Feedburner
15. Social Too
16. BoardTracker
17. BackType
18. KeoTag
19. Compete
20. Trackur

Jeff Bezos on Amazon and Zappos

In eight minutes, Jeff Bezos sums up everything he knows in running Amazon and plugs latest buy Zappos:

1. Obsess over customers.
2. Invent.
3. Think long term.
4. It’s Always Day One.

He might have added 5. Buy companies that trumps you on their culture.

8 lessons from Best Job In The World campaign

Rohit Bhargava posted his view on the viral social media campaign by Tourism Queensland for an AUD$150,000 dream job as an island caretaker that was eventually won by Ben Southall:

6 Lessons From the Best Marketing Campaign Ever (edited the sub-heads)

1. MAKE IT BELIEVABLE. Many marketing groups would never make a claim if they can’t provide substantial evidence. How might Tourism Queensland prove that their job is the best in the world? They can’t. But it is believable because it is a beautiful place and fits what many people’s definition of a dream job might be.

2. TELL A GOOD STORY: It’s not about how much you spend. One of the major benefits of smart public relations and social media is that it scales in a way that advertising typically doesn’t. In other words, you don’t have to pay more to get more. The real trick is to have something worthwhile to say that people can’t help talking about. You need a good story.

3. USE YOUTUBE, IT’S FREE: Focus on content, not traffic. The typical marketing campaign focuses on traffic to some kind of site. For Tourism Queensland, the biggest payoff of this campaign was having over 34,000 videos on YouTube from people around the world talking about how much they love Queensland. Aggregate the views of all those videos, and multiply them over the long term and you’ll start to understand the true impact of their campaign.

4. EMPOWER USERS TO SHARE AND VOTE: Create an inherent reason for people to share. Another element of this campaign that worked extremely well was the fact that there was voting enabled on the videos. What this meant was that after someone submitted their video, they had an incentive to share it with everyone in their social network online to try and get more votes.

5. USE THE INFLUENCERS: Don’t underestimate the power of content creators. Most recent statistics point to some number between 1% and 10% of the user base of any social network are the active content creators. Though these percentages may seem small, the potential impact of some of these individuals are vast online. It could easily become the secret weapon for your next marketing campaign.

6. LEAVE IT ONLINE, RIDE THE WAVE: Give your promotion a shelf life. The best thing about this campaign may just be the content yet to come. Ben, the winner, just started blogging and sharing videos and photos, but the content is already engaging, high quality and inspires you to dream of making it to Queensland yourself. Over the next six months, his itinerary will take him across the state of Queensland and unlock many other unique opportunities. Best of all, this content will live on far beyond the time span of the campaign.

I added two more of my own:
7. DON’T FAKE IT: Tourism Queensland almost derailed its own campaign when it posted a fake video resume of a woman named “Tegan” getting a reef tattoo in order to win the job. The woman was a staff of the advertising agency linked to the authority, and even the tattoo was a transfer.

8. MAKE SURE SERVER IS UP TO MARK: The overwhelming number of applications slowed down the server leaving many left out in the cold.

CumminsNitro Brisbane won the Grand Prix at the International Cannes Advertising Festival for the campaign.

10 step guide to social networks

This is an oldie but goodie from Cynthia Medina at Amadeus University:

The top 10 things we recommend to do before implementing a social network.

1. MANAGEMENT TRAINING: Have your management staff attend a Web 2.0 awareness training that describes social networks, blog, wikis, discussion boards, and social bookmarking. If management understands the differences between these technologies, it will be easier to determine whether you really need a social network.

2. STAFF TRAINING: After you determine you want to implement a social network, have the entire staff attend the same training your management staff attended. It’s only fair they understand this as well since they will be the ones using it, right?

3.SPOT CHAMPIONS: Observe which of your staff members really get excited about these changes. You will need some ambassadors to drive the change in your organization, and these are usually the ones that like change or technology.

4. FORMULATE POLICY: Come up with a Social Network policy. Everyone should know exactly what can and cannot be posted. Also, include employee contributions in their annual objectives to help ensure they’ll contribute content.

5. START WITH FACEBOOK: Before investing in software, start with one of the top social networks. The best one to start with is Facebook, which allows businesses to create a business page that is available to all Facebook users as well as non-users.

6. START POSTING: After you create the business page, have your ambassadors post notes (”blog post” in Facebook terms), discussions, videos, pictures, etc., that are related to your business. They can also create groups of special interest that promote certain travel destinations or types of travelers. Get some more tips on what to post from our article “What’s all that Web 2.0 stuff?“

7. GROW THE TEAM: Allow your staff to also create their own personal Facebook page. This way they can network with your existing customers and get new ones. They can also become fans of your business page and help you promote your business.

8. APPOINT MODERATORS: Assign some of the staff to moderate your business page. You need to make sure that everything that gets posted on your page is in good taste and doesn’t harm your business. Having someone moderate the page and delete distasteful comments will keep your page clean.

9. SPREAD THE WORD: Include your Facebook business page URL in all communications sent to customers. The more people see it, the more they will remember it. Tell everyone you are on Facebook…this is seen as a positive thing.

10. QUALITY MATTERS: Use your business page to communicate your business news and promote your specials. The quantity and the quality of the content posted on your business page is very important. The more you post, the more people will come back. Again, quality is very important.

Do this for a year while using and analyzing the “Insight” reports that Facebook offers. You can track stats on page views, discussions, video plays and more, plus you can export the data. Use it to assess changes or enhancements you need to make on your business page or to help you in your decision making later on.

When the year is up, you’ll be a social network expert and will be able to make a better decision on whether to buy software or develop your own social network. You might even decide to continue with Facebook. There is nothing wrong with using a free service.


So, don’t jump on the band wagon just because others are. You need to know if it’s going to work for your business. To help you in your research, check out this list of Business & Travel Social Networks. Download it, sign up and test them. It’s what I do (well, as long as they’re free). This is the only way you will know what others are really doing and what you can do for your business.

Corporate guide to social media

(Credit: Venn diagram based on DespairWear T-shirt)

Joshua-Michele Ross has outlined a simple guide for employers and employees on use of social media tools:


1. LEAD BY EXAMPLE. Leaders should model the behavior they would like to see their employees take. A corollary to this rule: don’t delegate social media to interns or people who can’t possibly represent your culture and brand.

2. PERFORMANCE MATTERS, NOT PRODUCTIVITY. Build your policies around job performance, not fuzzy concerns about productivity. If your employees are using Facebook at work, they are also likely checking work email after dinner or at odd hours of the day. Don’t ask them to give up the former if you expect them to continue the latter. If you have good performance measurements, playing the “lost productivity” card is a canard.

3. ENCOURAGE USE. Encourage employees to engage and interact with one another and with customers eg: Zappos

4. DON’T BLOCK SITE. Don’t block your employees from any site that is already talking about your products or that you would like to see talking up your products (YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, blogs and so on.). I have had many experiences sending instructional material to clients and having them tell me that they can’t view the video or site at work. Enough said.

5. PROVIDE TRAINING. The social web is a cultural phenomenon; don’t go there without a guide. Consider providing some form of education for your employees. You can use one of your own power-user employees or bring someone in – but get educated.

6. BEGIN FROM A POSITION OF TRUST. Most employees have common sense. Begin with a set of possibilities first (increasing awareness, improving customer service, gaining customer insight and so on) then draw up a list of worst-case scenarios (bad mouthing the company, inappropriate language, leaking IP, to name a few). Modify the guiding principles to help mitigate the risks you’ve identified.

Once you embrace having your employees participate in the social Web, give them a few basic guiding principles in how they conduct themselves. You can start with these:


1. LISTEN BEFORE YOU TALK. Before entering any conversation, understand the context. Who are you speaking to? Is this a forum for “trolls and griefers?” Is there a good reason for you to join the conversation? If your answer is yes, then follow these rules of engagement:

2. SAY WHO YOU ARE. In responding to any work-related social media activities always disclose your work relationship.

3. SHOW YOUR PERSONALITY. You weren’t hired to be an automaton. Be conversational while remaining professional. If your personal life is one that you (or your employer) don’t want to mix up with your work, then consider establishing both private and public profiles, with appropriate sharing settings.

4. RESPOND TO IDEAS NOT TO PEOPLE. In the context of business, always argue over ideas not personalities. Don’t question motives but stay focused on the merit of ideas.

5. KNOW YOUR FACTS AND CITE SOURCES. When making claims, always refer to your sources, using hyperlinks when possible. Always give proper attribution (by linkbacks, public mentions, re-tweets and so on).

6. STAY ON RECORD. Everything you say can (and likely will) be used in the court of public opinion — forever. So assume you’re “on the record.” Never say anything you wouldn’t say to someone’s face and in the presence of others. Never use profanity or demeaning language.

7. IF YOU RESPOND TO A PROBLEM, YOU OWN IT. If you become the point of contact for a customer or employee complaint, stay with it until it is resolved.


7 Golden Rules of Social Media
10 Golden Rules of Social Media
5 (then 17) Rules of Social Media Optimization
5 Pillars of Social Media Marketing
6 Social Media Myths

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