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Stray Thoughts


Archive for the ‘Social Web’ Category

Twitter Hash Tags for Irish Lost and Found Pets

Thursday, January 13th, 2011

Update

Having had positive feedback on both Twitter and Facebook to this idea I have since started adding these tags to the listing tweets.  I hope others will do the same.

Undoubtedly one of the big problems for people trying to locate their lost pet or trying to find the owner of a pet they have found in Ireland is the scattered nature of listings online. A listing may appear on one site but not another and so it is easy for one to be overlooked or missed.

One of the ways I had hoped to get around this scattering problem was by sharing the listings from Lost and Found Pets Ireland but for various reasons which I won’t linger on here, this is proving challenging.  On Twitter we now could be facing into a similar problem, unless you are following the right account, listing tweets can slip through the cracks.

This is where hashtags come in. For those of you who don’t tweet, a hashtag is a simple label you can include with a tweet to associate it with a particular subject, event etc. They take the form of a pound sign followed by a short combination of characters. These hash tags are searchable so if there was a hash tag associated with a particular event for example, I could locate all tweets relating to that event by searching on the hash tag and would see tweets regardless of whether I was following any of  the people who tweeted about that event or not.  To see the idea in action, here is a link to a search using the found Irish pet listing tag #fpie and a search for the lost Irish pet listing tag #lfpie.

Today, I’m proposing that we do the same thing with Irish lost and found pet listings as they now seem to be coming from several different accounts. My suggested hash tags are as follows:

#fpie for found pets
#lpie for lost pets

The thinking behind these is to let people get a complete overview of the listing tweets with the ability to filter them by lost or found status (thanks to @tehkittehkat for that suggestion) while keeping the hash tags short so to reserve the maximum characters for listing details.

If this idea makes sense to you or you have any further thoughts or ideas on this I would love to hear them either in the comments area below or on Twitter – @lostfoundpets.

I hope all parties posting listings can reach some agreement on this to make the lives of those dealing with lost and found pets a little easier.

Irish Web Awards Finalists 2010

Saturday, October 9th, 2010

So the little site that could has been shortlisted for the Best Facebook Page for a Business or Organisation category of the Irish Web Awards 2010 sponsored by Realex.  I am thrilled with this though the competition is certainly stiff.

No doubt it will be a fun night and I wish all who are up for awards the best of luck – except the others in our category, well damnit, I want to win!!!

Irish Web Awards 2010 Nominations are Out!

Thursday, September 9th, 2010

Irish Web Awards 2010 Nominated SiteNominations for the Realex supported Irish Web Awards 2010 have been announced and I’m delighted to see that Lost and Found Pets Ireland have been nominated in three categories no less, two of them big surprises to me, ‘Best Facebook Page for a Business or Organisation’, ‘Best SME/Small Business Website’ and ‘Most Useful Website in Ireland’.  Given that they had about 700 unique websites nominated by over 600 people and a few 1000 sites in total nominated, to make it into the nominations already feels like an achievement for ‘the little site that could’ and we wear our ‘nominated’ badge with pride.

A big thanks to all who took the time to go nominate us.  Its also great to see some of my own pet nominations on the list.  Best of luck to all of you as judging commences!

Share and Follow Lost & Found Pets Ireland on Google Buzz

Monday, August 23rd, 2010

Once again the title says it all folks.  I have just added easy sharing to Buzz on the lost and found pet listings pages and you now can follow Lost and Found Pets Ireland via Buzz.

Its unclear at this point what the eventual fate of Buzz will be with the much rumoured ‘Google Me’ social network apparently not to far off but it seems a reasonable guess that Buzz will be incorporated somehow into whatever new framework emerges.  Particualrly in light of Facebook’s bold move with their use of the Open Graph protocol, it is hard to believe that Google will not now make some form of aggressive move in the social networking space so I felt it was worth taking our place there.

Geotagged Lost and Found Pet Listings Go Live

Tuesday, April 20th, 2010

Pets with Latitude!

Well the title says it all.  Today we started providing the facility to geotag the lost and found pet listings posted to the site via a simple map interface in our listing submission wizard.

Location Location Location

Geotagged lost and found pet listings in IrelandWhile we are not the first Irish site to do this (though it could be a first that we’re not the first doing something :)), I think we push this technology significantly beyond what others are doing with it as we are adding the geolocation information to each listing page in machine readable micro format which should help with rankings for location based searches via Google and the other search engines.  In addition we  are geotagging our listing tweets on Twitter and our pet photo posts to Flickr where they will automagically appear on our map.  We are also including the geolocation information in our lost and found pets listings RSS feeds.

With Facebook (where we recently welcomed our 1,000th fan) rumoured to be on the verge of allowing users and developers to leverage geolocation information in apps and posts, and with the latest version of Firefox and those with GPS equipped phones now able to share their location with websites, we see a great opportunity to provide more relevant information to our users.

The site now features an map view of all current lost and found pet  listings in Ireland on our site for a bird’s eye view and each geotagged listing comes complete with its own map.

As with all new features, your feedback is more than welcome.