BBC: Old Scams Made New

This is a column for a BBC World Service piece. It’s not Reuters content.  Of all the scams you’d have thought the old ‘I’m a general’s widow and am sitting on a whole pile of cash I want to share with you” one would have gone away by now. But it hasn’t. The scammers are […]

Using LinkedIn to Research Spies Like Us

Several of the 11 alleged Russian spies leave interesting imprints on LinkedIn, suggesting rewarding pickings for journalists. Donald Heathfield, for example, had 74 connections. His specialities sound like they could equally applied to espionage: Comprehensive management of Risks and Uncertainties, Anticipatory Leadership, Building of Future Scenarios, Development and Execution of Future Strategies, Capture of Strategic […]

Skype’s New Dawn?

We talk about Facebook, twitter, MySpace and Friendster as the big social networks but we keep forgetting one that is far bigger than that: Skype. This from a Bloomberg piece on Skype’s vacillating fortunes: Skype has soared in popularity since it started in 2003 and has about 548 million users worldwide—more than Facebook, MySpace and […]

The Hazards of Recommending

Think twice before you agree to recommend someone on LinkedIn. They may be a logic bomber. You may have already read about the fired Fannie Mae sysadmin who allegedly placed a virus in the mortgage giant’s software. The virus was a bad one: it was set to execute at 9 a.m. Jan. 31, first disabling […]

Think Hard Before You Get Linked In

I’ve been trying to remove a contact on LinkedIn who proudly claims to be one of the best linked people on the planet. Why that’s a good thing I’m not sure, but I noticed I was getting LinkedIn spam—spam to my own email address, but coming via LinkedIn–from this person, so I tried to remove […]

Automating Your Relationships

It’s not for me, but there’s a certain unerring logic about SocialMinder: instead of leaving your social and business relationships to be tended by natural forces, why not automate them? SocialMinder offers just that, by mining your LinkedIn and Gmail address books and notifying you when you last contacted that person. (This is called monitoring […]

Social Networks Aren’t Social

Social networks are not really social—they’re informational. While they may appear to be social, and perhaps we flock to them and participate in them because we feel a need to socially connect, the real currency is information. Whereas we might go to a bar, a cocktail party or a dinner and spend 90% of our […]

Why Social Network Sites May Fail

Look at a social networking site lie Yaari and you can see where the social networking phenomenon may fail, simply by abusing the trust of its users. Sites like LinkedIn, Plaxo etc rely on expanding quickly by offering a useful service: trawling your address book to find friends and contacts who use the same service. […]

My First LinkedIn Spam

  Got my first LinkedIn spam today: Hi Jeremy, [name deleted], here… we are linked on LinkedIn I know you’re interested in earning an in~come on the internet. I also know you probably wouldn’t mind if ‘understanding it’ was made easier for you. Well, I’ve been notified about a new F.REE report by internet marketers, […]

This week’s column – What Price Privacy?

This week’s Loose Wire column is about Gmail, Plaxo and privacy: PRIVACY IS ONE OF those things you either obsess over, or don’t see what all the fuss is about. You’re either someone who gets indignant when a shop assistant asks you for your home address at the checkout, or you’re not. You either hate […]