Slow Content is slow

I’m having a break from blogging while I settle into a new home.

Hold tight for more. Promise.


The New Google Knowledge Graph

A nice overview of Knowledge Graph – a new Google search feature with potentially damaging consequences for champions of good, slow content. 

Crucially, as writer Lisa Clark notes: 

”[…] this new search feature makes Google prominent as a source of content, overshadowing other sources.”


Tinker, tailor, content strategist

”[…] There are different styles of content strategy—mainly an editorial/messaging focus and a technical/structural focus—but the master content strategist must work with content from all angles. Messaging architecture and messaging platforms. Content missions and content management.”


A beginning in the middle: opening a narrative

"If the goal of reading is understanding, then the beginning determines the structure of the explanation – and how effective that explanation is."


1 Notes

An intro to metadata and taxonomies

A nice item about the importance of metadata and taxonomies against the backdrop of the adaptive web.



Em dashes (this fella: —) serve a number of discrete grammatical purposes. They are not for decoration. Just saying.* 

* This post was written in the depths of a heavy cold. Normal service will resume shortly.



Words calculated to catch everyone may catch no one.
Adlai E. Stevenson Jr.



Today, I left Facebook. Yeah.

This isn’t some moral high ground post about evil Lord Zuck turning normal people into zombies who willingly surrender their personal details, listlessly follow the minutiae of strangers’ lives or relentlessly post photographs of their unborn children.

It isn’t about overzealous use of adjectives either. Sorry to disappoint.

No, this post is about the lifecycle of engagement with a user. Specifically, it is about how the content you send when that relationship is drawing to a close or being terminated, should be just as strong as that which you deliver when they’re a wide-eyed newbie.

Here’s the email I received from Facebook upon hitting the button:

Facebook's account deletion email

The first thing you’ll notice is that this email is in limbo between shouty HTML and plain text. Bizarre. 

The next thing to strike me was the lack of any familiar branding. Where is the logo? Where is that shuddersome shade of blue? And most of all: what’s with the tone of voice, Facebook? 

The message is so matter-of-fact, so achingly cold, that it might as well read: “Laters, loser! Thanks for nothing.”

Whilst an attempt to persuade me to resurrect my account would not have been appreciated, the email could do with a little less swagger. A hint of regret, perhaps, or an invite back should I ever change my mind. A fond farewell, even.

Lesson: I suppose what I’m trying to say is that the user who ends the relationship with your website or service doesn’t end up an unconnected, digital spinster. They simply go back into your pot of potential future customers. Your challenge is to win them back before you find them in bed with your competitors. It’s not them, it’s you.