Category Archives: Social Issues

Blog Action Day 2013 – Human Rights

Today is Blog Action Day, an event that I’ve participated in a few times over the years and one that I’m having a say on once again this year. The only thing I won’t be doing this year is helping to promote the event on Twitter because by the time this posts I’ll be in a board meeting at a convention in New Orleans, hoping there will be something for me to eat.


Courtesy of
www.blogactionday.org

In previous years, the topics I participated on were poverty, food and the power of “we” on this blog, and also addressing poverty and food on my business blog. This year I’m only writing on this blog, and the subject is human rights.

This is a much different topic to address than in previous years because anything that personally touches me is more through anecdotal items than personal history. Even though I was born in the south in 1959, when Jim Crow laws were still in effect and outside of the military base my parents had to look for “colored” whenever they wanted water or a bathroom or places to eat but being young I don’t remember that. I don’t remember when my parents had to drive through some states or pull over to the side of the road to catch some sleep because there were hotels where black people weren’t allowed to stay. Sure, I had some incidences when I was a little younger of being pulled over without knowing why, but could I prove that my human rights had been violated? Nope, and I was never arrested and always allowed to move on.

Is there still racism? Absolutely, to the extent that even now in the 2010’s there have to be resolutions in Congress to extend the Voting Rights Act; are you kidding me? Also, there’s never been any movement in passing a rights bill for women and, oh, the commotion in passing one for gender rights. At least the government finally saw fit to pay for past discrimination against Asian Americans, black and Latino farmers, and some native American communities, but there’s still so far to go.

And yet, this isn’t an issue that only involves America. This past week we had the story of Malala, a Pakistani girl who only wanted to get an education and was shot by the Taliban for it because she’s female. We’ve heard stories of rapes and acid being thrown in the faces of young women for trying to learn; can you imagine?

We hear of stories of rape in countries like India and South Africa, and legal punishments against women in places like Saudi Arabia and many other countries too numerous too mention because men decide that women aren’t really people, per se, less than human, thus they get raped and then go to jail for enticing men; wow…

We hear of countries like Syria unleashing poisonous gas on its own citizens and are reminded that Slobodan Milošević did the same thing against his own people back in the 90’s and that Saddam Hussein also engaged in the practice. These days we know all the bad things the Taliban and Al Qaeda do against anyone who’s not them and doesn’t believe as they do, all in the name of “religion”; phooey! For that matter we might as well group the people in this country who hide behind religion to abuse and disavow rights to those who aren’t like them; just because they’re not carrying bombs around doesn’t give them a free pass.

Where I linked above when I mentioned human rights is what’s called the Universal Declaration Of Human Rights, which has 30 points of view that they’re calling articles that they believe should be incorporated by the United Nations to protect the human rights of people around the world. All of them are equally good, but for me #3 stands out, and it’s the one I’m closing this article on, and hope all of you believe as I do:

Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person.
 

Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2013 Mitch Mitchell

Don’t Be Bullied About Your Blog Or Web Space

Well, I’m on a two-day “mad” if you will, and it’s something that really has nothing to do with me. A couple of days ago I was alerted to the fact that one of my local blogging friends was bullied by this guy who owns a gym. In my opinion he’s been bullying her since the first day she showed up but I think she missed it.

bullyingDM2810_468x720
Pimkie
via Compfight

Anyway, the main thing he bullied her about was writing about his place in her blog. He told her if she wrote about the gym he’d ban her from coming. The reason she went in the first place was because the gym misrepresented what it did and, in my mind, the guy was worried that if she wrote about it he’d be discovered.

After awhile he went too far, she got upset, and she both wrote about it and did a video. Her name is Reneè and her post is titled The Wrong Way; I hope you visit it, read it, and offer her some support because this could have been you.

Anyway, I’m obviously writing about it here, I wrote about it in this week’s Hot Blog Tips Newsletter, and I did the video below, which I’m going to share in multiple spaces. No one has the right to bully people for what they do in their own space as long as they’re not intentionally hurting someone. You’ll see how she was bullied and insulted in her blog post so I’m not going to repeat what he said, but I’m thinking that he probably wouldn’t have dared say it to another man. Obviously homeboy has no idea what the power of social media can do; he’s going to find out real soon, as I’ve done my part. As I said, I hate bullies.

I hope you watch the video below and I hope you like it, share it, comment on it and this post, and help spread awareness about bullies trying to stop people from doing what they want to do on their blogs and in social media.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vT25XC9SHMQ

 

Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2013 Mitch Mitchell

Hesitating In Donating To & Participating In Causes

More than 4 years ago I wrote an article on my business blog titled Why I Usually Donate Anonymously. That trend has continued for me, but there are now more reasons I hate giving money, even though I still pick and choose when I do & to whom I give.

Giving is Good at Windsor
Len Matthews via Compfight

A secondary issue is when there’s a petition going around for or against something that you possibly believe in. I’m not a big protester in this regard, but sometimes I’ve been moved enough to put my name on something. I’ve found that now that doesn’t seem to be the wisest thing to do all that often either, for more reasons than one.

In the video I talk about this more, but I do want to ask some questions that I didn’t get to in the video. One, when did deciding to be a part of causes become internet marketing? I ask that question because I’ve yet to hear one internet marketer say “just because someone gives you their email address or buys something from you doesn’t mean they want you to contact them again with your next product.” As a matter of fact, often there’s this grab for email addresses so you can pound people into submission with products and the like; oh my goodness!

Two, does the money increase or decrease when people keep hammering the public with marketing material? Are there people who actually give money to a cause, or multiple causes, once a month because of the marketing? I know people who tithe to their church, and I guess passing around the plate every week could be like this. My mother donates something monthly to a local ambulance service but they never asked her for any money, and another friend of mine donates money to KlanWatch monthly; I don’t know if they asked her. But are there really people who buy from someone every month or week because of all those emails?

I’m thinking and betting that more people are like me. Unless you’re getting information as well that you love I can’t imagine you like getting blasted all the time. If I’m wrong then let me know. In the meantime here’s my video rant on the subject; I hope you check it out and of course give me some likes or shares if you agree. I always forget to ask for that. lol



http://youtu.be/_qcet8fxxOA

 

Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2013 Mitch Mitchell

Facebook Edgerank, Et Al

Facebook pages; how much fun are they? Truth be told, obviously some people aren’t having much fun at all because they don’t put much new content on it, if they put content on it at all. Two weeks ago I spent some time going through some of the pages I liked to see if they were doing anything, and those that weren’t I “unliked”; you know, when I was a kid that wasn’t even a word. lol

Facebook pages are an odd duck, if you will. We create them because everywhere we’ve gone to talking about them says they can help us with our business. I’m not all that sure, but I do believe that if done right they can at least help give you a presence. But who’s seeing that presence, and what can you do to increase your presence?

There was this article on Jeff Bullas’ blog titled 6 Ways to Increase the Marketing Effectiveness of your Facebook Page, which includes this very cool infographic. It talks a little bit about Edgerank, which is the name of the algorithm Facebook uses to decide just how many people who have liked your page will have the opportunity to see whatever you put on your page. It’s based on a few things; how often those people have come to your site, so they participate in any way, do they ever share, etc. Actually, they use the same algorithm in determining how many of your friends and which friends see your general posts If you’re connected with 1,000 people on Facebook, you can bet that if 100 people ever see any of it you can count yourself lucky, unless you’ve made yourself popular.

Why do they do that? They do it because people share way more long form information on Facebook than they do on Twitter. On Twitter, every person I’m following has the ability to have me see everything they post via a general column. I have the ability to select certain people and put them in segregated columns so I definitely see what certain people post as opposed to everyone, but if I decide to check the general column the skies the limit.

On Facebook people share pictures, blog posts, etc. Some folks write long form prose of some type. If Facebook showed you every single thing that everyone posted, you’d be overwhelmed. Yes, you do have the ability to segregate your audience on Facebook at all, something I’ll cover at another time, but it’s still a lot of stuff.

So now you know why you don’t see everything from all your friends and why everyone doesn’t see everything you put on your Facebook page. How can you improve the odds of getting more people to see your stuff? The link I provided above gives you 6 ways. The idea is that, at least for your business page, you want to add more content to it so people have more to see, and you want to add more images because it’s been proven that people react better to them, but what if you’re not a bit time photographer, or the images you have don’t quite fit what your business is about?

Now, you might want to know how it’s going for me, since I adopted the process I talk about in my link about 3 weeks ago. I mainly post links from my business site since, well, it’s my Facebook business page. lol I do post a link here and there from this blog, the motivational stuff, but not all that often.

For the full month period before the last 3 weeks Facebook was my 5th best source of traffic, and I only had 21 visits. In the last 3 weeks Facebook has moved up to #3 and I had 55 visits in that time. Not only that but I went from a page duration time of 1 minute and 4 seconds to a whopping 14 minutes and 39 seconds. Why anyone would stay on a page for that long I couldn’t tell you, but what could be happening is that people could be sticking around and looking at other pages. And one more thing; from Facebook it’s a lot of repeat visitors, as the rate of new visitors is only 29%, as opposed to 95% from Google and 79% from Twitter.

Not so shabby I’d say. Anyway, I’ve told you about Edgerank, shared a link to an infographic, and a link to my post about ways of finding things you can add to your Facebook business page to help raise the number of people who come by. What else would you like to know? 🙂 By the way, if you’d like to see my page look to the left and click on the link that will take you there; always happy to have more likes for that page.
 

Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2012 Mitch Mitchell

Blog Action Day – The Power Of “We”

Every year this group that calls itself Blog Action Day comes up with a topic that they hope bloggers around the world will write on. I’ve only participated twice as far as I know, and I did the same date on this blog and my business blog. This time around I’m only doing it on this blog, and this is that article. The previous articles were on the topic of poverty and food.

This year’s topic is on the power of “we“, which I find fascinating because not only was this a calendar year where the collective “we” changed history, but this is a presidential election year, and the “we” have a another chance to select either the current leader or a new leader. I’m going to touch upon the former then talk more about the latter.

In the last calendar year we saw the governments of Egypt and Libya overcome decades of dictatorship, and we almost saw the overthrow of Syria, not by military means but by the people joining together and deciding they wanted another way. To the credit of the military in the first two, they didn’t just do their “duty” and start slaughtering the populace, which they could have easily done. Syria showed that when one just “has” to stay in power, it will be by any means necessary.

We have seen the power of “we” used in other countries in the same fashion, sometimes to the detriment of the rest of the world in my opinion, but sometimes change has to happen before things can move forward, no matter what kind of change it is. And it’s hard to ignore the power of “we” in these instances.

So, what about our presidential election? Voting is a right that people in many countries would love to have. There’s almost no corruption and, when it concerns presidential politics, millions of people go to the polls to vote. This is the best way of using the power of “we” in our country.

Except it doesn’t quite work that way. Some of you might remember my post titled I’m Black where I talked about having people question my vote for current President Obama because of my skin color rather than using reasoned decision making. Truth be told, what really happened is that leaders in black communities across the country worked hard on getting the vote out, and it was a success.

But it wasn’t the first time there was such a push. Every year since Gore decided to run for president the same thing happened, and black voter registration has increased every year, thus more black people voted. The power of “we” was in evidence.

Was that what put President Obama over the top though? Not even close. What pushed him over the top was the other side of the power of “we”, that being white voters that decided they weren’t going to vote at all. There was a decrease on the other side of around 35% that decided not to even show up, even though they were registered. See, the power of “we” can be apathetic, and in their own way participate in the process by not participating.

In 2008, just over 57% of registered voters decided to exercise their constitutional rights to vote. It was the highest turnout since 1968 when just under 61% of the population voted. Compare this to the years from 1848 to 1900 when only once did the voting populace come under 70%, and it was still 69.6% in 1852. Three times in history we couldn’t even get 50% of registered voters to the polls; apathy are “we”.

Still, it all shows that the power of “we” is strong, both for positive and negative reasons. If people decide to band together for a cause, “we” is a powerful statement. When all is said and done, if we all want positive things to happen in society, it’s up to “we” to get it done. And we can do it.
 

Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2012 Mitch Mitchell