Posts Tagged ‘drsyb’

Belmont Opening Convocation

Posted in Uncategorized on August 22nd, 2012 by admin – Be the first to comment

Excited to share another year with students.


Jeremy Lin: A Player in the International Game

Posted in Uncategorized on February 20th, 2012 by admin – Be the first to comment

Credit: Rob Carr/Getty Images from

Much is being written about NBA New York Knicks player Jeremy Lin. Some good, some bad, some controversial as an ESPN headline “Chink in the Armor” demonstrates.  But the bigger story may be missed.  In 2005, New York Times columnist Thomas L. Friedman shared very relevant information in his book “The World is Flat.”  Friedman warned the NBA like many American industries was becoming “vanilla.”  Meaning, the players all look the same, similar to many boardrooms. This is very dangerous in a world where design and originality dominate.  Superiority was being replaced by mediocrity allowing more motivated people with different skills, dynamics and and dogmas to take center stage. Jeremy Lin is a US native and an amazing person bringing excitement and diversity to the game with an international flair. He’s unique like Spud Webb dunking back in the day. Webb was only 5’7″.

Friedman used the Olympics to make his case and point.  As international basketball players worked harder because they were motivated, they would bring diversity to the NBA.  Don’t miss what Harvard Professor, Dr. Clayton Christensen and his fellow researchers have to say about the motivation of American students in the book “Disrupting Class.”  Friedman talked about how some US NBA players didn’t listen to their coaches because the “player” became a celebrity.  Many are depending on showmanship and not skill. The players who are trying to succeed to help their families tend to practice more.  And as Friedman notes, more players will come from China, Latin America and Eastern Europe in the years to come. Jeremy Lin is of Taiwanese descent and a graduate of Harvard University.

Friedman goes on to say after World War II, America’s economy remained intact and for forty years thereafter. There weren’t any real competitors. It was an advantage with crippling effects now.  ”The members of the first generation are nose to the grind innovators; the second generation holds it all together; then their kids come along and get fat, dumb, and lazy and slowly squander it all. I know that is both overly harsh and a gross generalization, but there is, nevertheless,. some truth in it.” Those are Friedman’s words not mine.

Hopefully, Jeremy Lin will inspire all players in all games to improve their practical skills and not just their player cards.  Americans are now being forced to compete and to collaborate. With every article about race, an international message is being sent about our lack of respect for and understanding of various cultures. The need for collective intelligence is critical.  That’s a fancy word for diversity. In biology, species die for lack of diversity. The same will come of American companies and institutions without diverse contributors in all positions in the game.  The World is Flat shows how the World is now connected digitally, virtually and instantaneously.  America’s issues are on display for the entire world to see. Bottom line, it’s time to stop focusing on race (it doesn’t exist anyway) or we’ll lose the race (place as a Super Power). Americans, are you game?


Make People Think You’re Crazy

Posted in Change on October 6th, 2011 by admin – Be the first to comment

It’s one thing to act crazy, it’s another to go crazy. When Civil Rights Freedom Fighter Fred Shuttlesworth told the late Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. history wouldn’t be kind to him if he didn’t take chances, I’m sure they looked at Shuttlesworth sideways. When he returned to his home after the Klan tried to bomb it, people were sure he had lost his mind.

Each time Apple pioneer Steve Jobs told an engineer, the product wasn’t good enough, create the impossible, some surely wanted him fit for a straight jacket. And one can only imagine how uncomfortable some people were when he introduced the Mac, iPod, Nano, iPhone and the iPad.

Legal Scholar Derrick Bell quit more jobs to protest unfair practices than some people have in a lifetime. He was the first tenured Black Law School Professor at Harvard.

All three men were considered crazy by some of their peers. They didn’t color in the lines. They didn’t let naysayers, negativity or neglect affect their agendas. They did what they were put on Earth to do. Approval wasn’t necessary. They did not conform.

Difference, diversity and divergent thinking are integral parts of greatness. All three men walked different paths yet they clearly cross in the fight for freedom and access.

Their deaths are three legs on a stool. By fate, one wouldn’t have gone without the other. Don’t cut any of their legacies short or the stool won’t have a leg upon which to stand.

Make people think you’re crazy and history may remember you more fondly. Heck, you’ll get noted for standing out quicker than you will for fitting in.

Search and 1984

Posted in Uncategorized on October 4th, 2011 by admin – Be the first to comment

Recently, I read the book 1984 by the late George Orwell. It was written in 1949. The main character is Winston Smith, a cog in a mighty big wheel of political power and dominance. Winston isn’t allowed to think for himself. His job is to rewrite history to make sure it is in line with what the “Party” says. People are not allowed to write. Winston attempted to secretly write in his journal. He learned to write when he was young. (Today, some schools no longer teach cursive writing, if a flip is switched and the digital world goes dark, who will still know how to read, write and do arithmetic?) There is a telescreen used to watch citizens and to share brainwashing messages. To some it is fanatical fantasy. To others, the book is frighteningly close to reality.

One of my Belmont University Mass Media students shared this TED video with me dealing with search results. The speaker demonstrates how each individual receives different search results while searching the same topic. This level of gatekeeping is dangerous. If I only care about travel and I google Egypt, I may only receive travel information and little if any information about the revolution. Please watch this video and share your comments.

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Belmont J-Students Learning via Skype

Posted in Uncategorized on April 12th, 2011 by admin – Be the first to comment


Conference Communication Tools

Posted in New Media, Uncategorized on April 6th, 2011 by admin – Be the first to comment

Conference Communication in the Virtual Age

I cannot believe it’s been almost a month since SXSW. It was my first time attending what has become a mega conference. It happens in three parts: interactive, film and music. I attended the interactive session March 11-15. More than 15-thousand people descended upon Austin, TX for a week of raucous fun and fellowship. The key to SXSW is relationship building. As we prepare for the National Association of Black Journalist’s annual convention in Philadelphia, August 3-7. I wanted to share some of the tools I used or at least heard about at SXSW. And of course, a few I’ve known about and haven’t had a chance to try.

Moo Cards-Moo cards are mini-business cards. They’re like Twitter. Twitter is micro-blogging, a shorter version of blogging. Moo cards are a smaller version of business cards. Be aware the print is tiny. Therefore, be considerate of the audience to which you plan to distribute. Don’t laugh, if you’re not 40 yet, as my Daddy often said, just keep livin.’

Hashable- post and share the people you meet via Twitter and get their contact information seamlessly. It will also show an accurate network of who you connect with the most. It’s a dynamic ‘relationship book’ updated with everyone you meet on the spot. You can also discover new people by seeing who your friends are meeting. You can create an inner circle to highlight members in your network. I tried to use this one a little. Still need to experiment. Oh yeah, this is a mobile app.

Beluga-is a mobile app allowing groups to communicate. One person creates the group. Consider it a room. Then he/she sends out an email invitation for others to join. Once you are a member, you can invite others as well. Then, you can share messages. You must have the app and be a member of the group. It’s a group IM moment. For example, you can let people know you’re hungry and at a certain restaurant or that you’re attending a really great session.

GroupMe-is a mobile app allowing groups to communicate with each other privately. It is based on your mobile number. This is why some opt to use Beluga. Many don’t want third parties to get access to their number. We used Beluga as our back channel to connect the Blacks in Tech group at SXSW. But GroupMe functions the same way.

QR Codes- can be used to embed your website address, contact information and phone number. It’s easy to do. Follow the link and try it. You will need to down load a QR reader for your phone. I have QR Reader, Microsoft Tag Reader, 2D Sense and LiveReader on my mobile device.

Bump –Unlike the fist bump making the President and First Lady news for cultural reasons, bumping iPhones or Androids can transfer your contact information virtually.

Google Goggles-allows you to take a picture of various things including landmarks, books and even business cards. When you take a picture of a business card, the information can then be stored in your contact information.

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Color-is hot off the press and surrounded by controversy. However, when used strategically especially by journalists in breaking news situations, it can be useful. In addition, it may be fun at a professional conference. I experimented with it with my students. We learned that indeed you have to be in the same proximity with the other people uploading pictures. A stream of pictures is created and shareable and embeddable. I can see this being interesting for example at NABJ’s Salute to Excellence gala. Think about everybody with the app, taking pictures and stream is created. Then, we can share that stream to promote the organization. In addition, for breaking news, it will be helpful to news organizations to be able to show an event been covered from multiple angles, weather comes to mind. Privacy issues abound and the crowd has to self-censor. Of course, who wants their boss to see them in a compromising position? Well, come to think of it, cheaters and creepers beware. Watch this video of serial entrepreneur Bill Nguyen’s take on his latest invention.

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This list is not exhaustive. This is just a snapshot of what’s in my brain at the moment. Please feel free to comment and share your wisdom. Collective intelligence should always be leveraged.

Society of Professional Journalists Regional Conference, Nashville, TN

Posted in Uncategorized on March 27th, 2011 by admin – Be the first to comment

Meet the Press 2.0

Posted in Uncategorized on March 1st, 2011 by admin – Be the first to comment

Amazing panel with Chris “Ferf” McIntyre, CarlSays, Scott McIntosh, Musikpitch & Neely Burks, SourceYourCity moderated by Kia Jarmon. Great information for PR people. We used #meetthepress.

Marquette J-School Marks 100 Years

Posted in Uncategorized on February 24th, 2011 by admin – Be the first to comment

Preparing for Centennial Lecture Series at Marquette, I am beyond excited. Panelists include fellow Marquette alums, former Scripps Howard Pres. & CEO, Bill Burleigh; CBS News Correspondent Ben Tracy and Kimberly Schwandt, White House Producer for Fox News Channel.

Other panelists include web editor, comedian and founder of, Baratunde Thurston, Emmy Award winner Quiana Burns producer for Robin Roberts on GMA, Pamela Hill Nettleton, Asst. Prof Jrn at Marquette and Gideon Yago, writer and former correspondent for MTV News and CBS News.

I’m hyped! Follow me on twitter for updates. @drsyb

Google Goggles

Posted in Dr. Syb, Web 3.0 on February 13th, 2011 by admin – Be the first to comment

I knew about Google Goggles but life was happening so fast, I really didn’t have a chance to explore the mode of visual search. On the iPhone 3G and higher, just hit your Google app. The search option appears and their will be a camera and microphone icon. Hit the mic and say what you want to find. Google is capturing your voice pattern and your search.

Hit the camera icon and take a picture of a book, DVD, product, landmarks, famous pictures and even a sudoku
puzzle and the results will shock many. Once facial recognition improves, I keep educating people about privacy, ethical and possible legal issues.

When people can be recognized with the wave of a phone, whether the person realizes it or not, how will this impact democracy? Will I one still attend a rally perceived to be politically incorrect by some? Will those in witness protection programs remain anonymous? Oh, I have more questions but I’m sure the reality is getting clearer as facial recognition software improves as well.

Don’t fear, be informed.

Remember, online sins may be forgiven, but they won’t be forgotten.