RAQ: How can I update both Twitter and Facebook?

Here’s a question from yesterday (I’m paraphrasing):

I don’t do a very good job of keeping either Twitter or my Facebook status updated. Is there a way I can do both at the same time, or use Twitter to update Facebook?


Twitter 110, which was developed more than a year ago, lists some options for this. One limitation though, and the reason I quit having Twitter automatically update my Facebook status, is that I tend to tweet a lot and often have replies, for example, that would not make sense to Facebook users who haven’t been part of the conversation. So my kids used to tell me, “Dad, your Facebook status is always really boring.” Or weird.

If you spend more time in Facebook, you can use the Twitter application within Facebook to send your tweets.

But here’s the way I currently prefer to work, using Tweetdeck. In Tweetdeck I can incorporate both of the Twitter accounts with which I work (@LeeAase and @mayoclinic) as well as my Facebook profile. That way I don’t have to be in Facebook or on the Twitter Web interface, but can update both simultaneously.

So I can select just to have updates sent to my personal Twitter account:

Picture 1

…or I can select to go both to Twitter and Facebook:

Picture 2

If I choose the latter, the Tweetdeck dashboard shows this:

Picture 5

And here’s what shows up on Facebook:

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and on Twitter:

Picture 6

The nice part about having an application like Tweetdeck is that you can decide which messages are appropriate for which platform. And of course, as I say in Twitter 106 and in Twitter 152: Tweetcamp III, Tweetdeck or an application like it greatly increases your Twitter productivity.

I still don’t update my Facebook status as frequently as I should, but Tweetdeck makes it easier to keep the status updated without having to go to the Facebook Web interface.

How do you keep Twitter and Facebook statuses updated? Or do you even try to do both?

An Experiment with uStream.tv

On Monday I’m going to be presenting Tweetcamp III, and instead of a phone conference call or using our Mayo Clinic AV department resources am planning to do a video Webcast using uStream.tv.

So I’m doing a little experiment tonight, and embedding the code from my uStream program, which I’ve dubbed ChancellorCast, here on the SMUG site.

At 9:30 p.m. EDT/8:30 CDT/6:30 PDT tonight, I’m going to do a brief test of uStream, for about 10 or 15 minutes. If you’re able to see and hear me, I would appreciate it if you would leave a comment below.

I want to test this with a smaller group, so that for #tweetcamp3 we can have the kinks worked out.

Appreciate your feedback and help.

Update 9:15 CDT: Thanks to all who participated. I think you helped me prepare so we can have a good experience Monday. I’ve embedded a video below that I recorded with uStream, which gives a bit of an overview of Tweetcamp III.

Meet George Jetson!

The Jetsons was one of my favorite non-Looney Tunes cartoons from my youth. Flying cars and the 15-hour workweek were highlights for me of the Hanna-Barbera vision of the world of 2062.

Obviously those predictions haven’t come to fruition yet (at least for me), but one that has become reality in a big way is the video phone. Remember how George used to talk to Jane face-to-face from his office through a video screen? And how Mr. Spacely would always seem to appear on the video screen at inopportune times?

My wife Lisa and I played Jetsons a couple of nights ago with our daughter, Rachel, and granddaughter, Evelyn. They live about 500 miles away from us, in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Here was their first experience with Skype:


In the 1960s — when many long-distance phone calls were operator assisted and the per-minute charges for a simple voice call were exorbitant and only the big three television networks and their affiliates had video cameras — the idea of being able to talk by video across the miles was as outlandish as levitating cars seem to us today.

Which brings me back to the subject of my post about whether Facebook, YouTube and Twitter are free. If you had told anyone in 1962 (when The Jetsons ran in prime time), that they would be able to do what Lisa, Rachel, Evie and I did Tuesday night (along with our cat, Zeke), they would have shaken their heads in disbelief. 

Most probably would have doubted it even in 1992, or would have thought the cost of such a service would be exorbitant. Remember AOL, Prodigy and similar services that set time limits on Web access?

But like YouTube, Facebook and Twitter, Skype is FREE! Yes, you need a computer with a webcam to take advantage of it (and a MacBook with built-in iSight is a great choice), but for computer-to-computer voice calls or videoconferencing, there are no charges with Skype. 

If you’re reading this, you already have access to a computer. You may even have a webcam, but if not you can get one for about the cost of a cheap DVD player (another technology that’s becoming ridiculously inexpensive.)

Here is the key question to ask yourself (and doubters in your organization): If our competitors are paying nothing to communicate more effectively with their customers (and ours) by using this technology with the staff they already have, wouldn’t our failure to take advantage of these tools be a significant competitive disadvantage for us?

For some great reading on why all these tools are being made available for FREE, check out this article in Wired by Chris Anderson. It’s also the subject of his new book, to be released next month. I’ll be reviewing it here soon after it comes out.

Meanwhile, if you want to give Skype a try, download it and I would be happy to be your first videoconference conversation partner. Just tweet me (@LeeAase) and be sure you’re following me on Twitter, and we can connect via direct message to set a time for a face-to-face talk on Skype.

The $4-a-week Online Newsroom (and other MacGyver Tips)

Here’s the presentation I’m giving this morning at the Ragan Communications Corporate Communicators Conference in Chicago. I’m part of the Social Media track, from 9:45 to 10:45 CDT.

I welcome any questions or comments below. And if you want to follow or participate in the Twitter stream, please use the #ccc09 and #smug hashtags.

Twitter 105: Tweeting by Text Message


While I love using my iPhone for Twitter interactions, the old-school mobile way to post updates to Twitter is via SMS text messages.

The steps are simple:

  1. Connect your cell phone to your Twitter account through the Devices settings. (You do have a Twitter account, right?) You will enter your cell phone number, and Twitter will send you a validation code. Once you receive that on your cell phone, enter it on the Twitter Devices page to show that you got the message.
  2. Create a new entry in your cell phone contacts list, and call it Twitter. Give it the number 40404.
  3. From then on, all you need to do to send an update to Twitter is choose it in your cell phone contacts and send a text message. You can send a message of up to 140 characters.

That’s all there is to it. If you have a mobile device that includes email you also can use that function to send your tweets via Twittermail, instead of using SMS.

The smart clients for iPhone (and I assume for Android or Blackberry, though I haven’t used them) enable you to have much more interactivity with Twitter than you can with an old-school wireless phone.

But if old-school is what you have, SMS or Twittermail are good options for mobile tweeting.