Start an Investment Account – Level IV to Financial Freedom

After you’ve eliminated your bad debt, you’ve started a retirement account, and you’ve saved an emergency fund. It’s now time to start the intermediate levels to Financial Freedom and on to Level IV – Investing!

There are few things you need to think about determining how you are going to achieve this level. First, do you have the time and inclination to learn about investing? If yes, then you can consider the complex option to this level. If not, then you need to proceed straight to the simple option.

For you to be able to take on the complex level, you’re going to need to read a few books, understand how to value an investment, and start to understand broad markets like the stock market and the commodities markets. You need to start understanding how inflation (or disinflation), commodity prices, interest rates and their direction, the growth in the economy and public policy affect the markets. So which option is best for you?

Investing Options

Simple Option

A first possibility is a simple option and it is to use the robo-advisor. A robo-advisor is a platform like Betterment, Wealthfront or Personal Capital that manages a portfolio for you of index funds based on an investment plan and a managed asset allocation. Using a platform like Betterment, in particular, allows you to set up goals with time horizons and an investment profile for each goal. You can set the duration of how long to reach the goal based on your risk profile and it will help create an investment plan for you. This makes the whole process automated, simple and manageable. The investment plan will outline your asset allocation for your portfolio and how much per month you need to contribute. This is a very good approach towards solid systematic goal-based investing.

For example, you want to have a goal of buying a house in 3 years. You think you need $60,000 for a down payment and you have a moderate risk profile. How much do you need to contribute every month and what do you need to invest in to reach your goal? Betterment’s platform handles the entire process. Based on these assumptions and configurations, the platform recommends you save $1,500 per month towards this goal. As time goes on and you start generating returns, the estimate contribution to stay on the target may change, but you get the idea how this will help you manage to your goal.

Complex Option

A more complex approach requires you to set up a brokerage account and learn much more about investing.

If you’re going to pursue the complex option to investing, then you’re going to have to learn a some of the basics. One of the basics is about how to value an investment. Let’s start with stocks. Some of the basic fundamental indicators for how to value a stock includes PE ratio (Price / Earnings), PEG ratio (PE to Growth) Ratio, dividend yield and ROE (Return on Equity).

Valuation Criteria for Stocks

Let’s take each of those ones by one. The PE ratio is the price to earnings ratio. This is generally how much you’re willing to pay per dollar of earnings. The average PE for a large cap company in the S&P 500 is 15. This means that most investors are willing to pay $15 in stock price for a dollar of earnings. The standard valuation model will change depending on the company sector and industry. For example. the high-growth tech sector may have an average PE of 25 while the low-growth utility sector may average a PE of 8. But, the general criteria to learn here is what is a good PE ratio that represents value and what PE ratio represents over-valuation.

The next indicator is the PEG ratio, that is the price to earnings to growth ratio. This indicator measures price earnings to the company’s growth. In other words, this indicator is measuring how much an investor is willing to pay for growth. If a stock has a PE 15 and an average 15% per year of growth then the PEG ratio is 1.0. If the company has a PE ratio 30 and company has 15% annual growth, then the PEG ratio is 2.0. Generally speaking, a PEG ratio of 1.0 indicates a good investment opportunity, and a PEG ratio of 2.0 or higher indicates a time to sell a company’s stock. An investor wants to be mindful of how much they are willing to spend on a company relative to its growth. If you’re investing for growth, this is a key indicator to follow.

The next indicator an investor wants to consider is the dividend yield of the company. This is the main indicator for the value sector of your portfolio; if you’re investing for value, this is an important indicator to follow. An investor would like to see a company have a dividend yield that is higher than the 10-year Treasury interest rate. So, for example, right now the 10-year Treasury is 2.3%. An investor would like to find companies that have a dividend yield higher than 2.3%. This will obviously adjust over time as inflation and interest rates change. This is indicator does not work well for evaluating growth-based in assets or investments held. But, it is something that should be considered within your overall investment strategy.

When evaluating stock investment options, the final base indicator that should be considered when evaluating a stock investment is the ROE or a return on equity. The return on equity indicator demonstrates a companies’ ability to generate a return per invested dollar. Generally, companies with good brands that don’t need large capital expenditures can generate a good ROE. Companies with lower ROEs have less defensible business models. ROE is important because it shows a business’ efficiency in generating a return for shareholders.


The next important factor to learn to become a good investor is diversification. I think it was Jim Cramer who said diversification is the only free lunch. Diversification allows an investor to manage and mitigate against various market changes. As an investor, you want different asset classes in your portfolio, which will all be affected differently against interest rate changes, inflation, economic growth and commodity price changes. One of the basic diversification calculation is a percentage of stocks and bonds in your portfolio. Generally, I would break it into owning most of the following 9 asset classes – US Stocks, Developed Market Stocks, Developing Market Stocks, Real Estate (REITs), Natural Resources (Timber & Oil), Gold, Corporate Bonds, US Govt Bonds and International Govt Bonds. Many go into other diversification like sector diversification or company size (large cap or small cap), but I think it’s more important to think about these larger asset classes. Based on your goal(s), time horizon and risk profile, you should think about diversifying your investment portfolio over these general asset classes. My favorite book on the subject is David Swensen’s, “Pioneering Portfolio Management”.


There’s no way to cover all the details that are required in handling personal investment in one article, but I hope I’ve given you some ways to approach winning at Level IV. The goal is to set up a system of investment. All investment dollars should be tied to a goal and all goals should have a time horizon, risk profile which leads to an asset allocation. You can use a platform like Betterment to help manage to your goals, you can hire a professional, or if you have the time and inclination, you can start learning about investing.

Most people start investing by learning how to invest in the public stock market. I agree with that, so I’ve outlined a few points to think about on how to value whether you’re getting a good deal on an investment and how you should broadly diversify your investments. Once you’ve built a system and reach one financial goal, you’ve won at Level IV – Winning at Financial Freedom.

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Start an Investment Account – Level IV to Financial Freedom

QQTOO 88 Slot Togel: Situs Judi Togel Online Terpercaya di Indonesia


Ketika mencari situs judi online, terutama untuk permainan togel, keamanan dan kepercayaan adalah dua faktor utama yang harus dipertimbangkan. Namun, tidak semua situs judi online dapat diandalkan dan terpercaya. Oleh karena itu, penting untuk memilih situs togel terpercaya yang bisa memberikan pengalaman bermain yang aman dan menyenangkan.

Salah satu situs qq toto togel terpercaya yang direkomendasikan adalah situs resmi qqtoto 88 slot togel. qqtoto 88 slot togel adalah situs bandar judi online aman dan terpercaya yang menyediakan layanan togel resmi.

Keamanan dan kepercayaan adalah faktor utama dalam memilih situs togel terpercaya. qqtoto 88 slot togel menyediakan sistem keamanan dan privasi yang sangat baik untuk melindungi data dan transaksi pengguna. Selain itu, qqtoto 88 slot togel juga memiliki lisensi resmi dari PAGCOR, BMM Testlab, dan WLA, yang menunjukkan bahwa situs ini telah memenuhi standar keamanan dan kepercayaan yang ditetapkan oleh badan pengawas industri perjudian.

Selain faktor keamanan dan kepercayaan, situs togel terpercaya seperti qqtoto 88 slot togel juga menyediakan layanan dan pengalaman bermain yang berkualitas. qqtoto 88 slot togel menawarkan pasaran togel resmi seperti pasaran Sydney, pasaran Toto Macau, pasaran Hongkong, pasaran Singapore, dan pasaran Negara lain yang merupakan beberapa pasaran terbaik di dunia.

Selain itu, qqtoto 88 slot togel juga menyediakan layanan pelanggan yang baik dan responsif melalui live chat, telepon, dan email, sehingga setiap kendala atau masalah bisa segera diatasi. Proses transaksi seperti deposit dan penarikan dana juga sangat mudah dan cepat, karena qqtoto 88 slot togel menerima pembayaran melalui berbagai macam metode seperti rekening bank lokal BCA, Mandiri, CIMB, Danamon, BRI, BNI, dan juga deposit pulsa dari provider Simpati, IM3, dan XL.

Untuk memasang taruhan pada situs togel terpercaya seperti qqtoto 88 slot togel, langkah-langkahnya sangat mudah. Pertama, pilih pasaran togel yang ingin dimainkan. Kemudian, pilih jenis taruhan yang ingin dipasang. Setelah itu, masukkan angka tebakan dan nominal taruhan yang diinginkan. Terakhir, tekan tombol konfirmasi untuk menyelesaikan proses pemasangan taruhan.

qqtoto 88 slot togel juga menyediakan layanan customer service yang responsif dan profesional, yang siap membantu para pemain dalam mengatasi kendala atau masalah yang timbul.

Jika Anda mengalami kendala saat bermain atau melakukan transaksi, jangan khawatir karena qqtoto 88 slot togel memiliki customer service yang bertugas selama 24 jam sehari dan siap membantu Anda. Anda dapat menghubungi customer service melalui live chat, whatsapp, atau email.

Yang terakhir, para pemain togel online harus bermain dengan bijak dan bertanggung jawab. Mereka harus membatasi jumlah taruhan mereka sesuai dengan kemampuan finansial mereka. Jangan sampai terjebak dalam permainan yang berlebihan sehingga mengakibatkan kerugian yang besar.

Kesimpulan tentang Situs Judi Togel Online Resmi QQTOO 88 Slot Togel

Permainan 4D toto togel online adalah salah satu jenis permainan togel yang menarik dengan total hadiah sebesar 10 juta rupiah. Namun, sebelum memasang taruhan pada permainan ini, para pemain harus memperhatikan hal-hal penting seperti keamanan situs togel online, pemahaman aturan permainan, promo dan bonus, dan bermain dengan bijak dan bertanggung jawab. Jangan sampai menyesal, buruan daftar di situs togel resmi 4D qqtoto 88 slot togel untuk mencoba peruntungan anda.

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on QQTOO 88 Slot Togel: Situs Judi Togel Online Terpercaya di Indonesia

Advertise, Promote, and Market Your Business Online – How to Use the Internet


To retain a competitive edge and marketing advantage in today’s business environment you must incorporate Internet Marketing. Web Presence is a must, email advertising, and any other form of e commerce driven marketing and sales campaigns. The internet is a great tool to use if you either have a brick and mortar business or an online business, and a Web site for your business is almost a requirement. The internet allows you to promote, advertise, and market your business in a cost effective manner. As a matter of fact a lot of what you can use to market on the internet is free! Free helps because it will allow you to focus more of your efforts on other parts of your business. Think about it… what other tool do you have available to you that allows billions of people to reach out directly to your business or organization from anywhere in the world and you have the capability of advertising to all of the potential clients for practically no cost to you. You don’t need to be a technical guru or webmaster or even possess a great deal of Web design knowledge or online experience to use the internet in an effective manner that is going to push your business and products to a new global customer base.

To be competitive though you need to develop a good sense of how to promote your business online and get it to the top of the search engines list so searchers will see your site immediately and click on your link. That’s all it takes to get someone to view your business online “is a click”. The concept is simple however in the beginning there is a learning curve, but a good way to ease that curve is to have a good system in place that will give you all the secret time tested methodology, and tricks of the trade to ensure that your site outranks the competition.

No matter what type of business you have, or are looking to get into I am going to offer you some free advice. I don’t want to scare you but a good percentage of new online businesses fail within the first year, not because of the product or service but because of the inexperience of the person behind it. So I would suggest partnering up in a program that helps you successfully run your campaign so you are successful.

Here is a short list of internet marketing concepts to look for in a good program:

  • · The importance of using the internet to advertise your business.
  • · How to create a good marketing campaign.
  • · How to develop a website that will increase your profits.
  • · How to attract more visitors and traffic to your website.
  • · Training on Video marketing.
  • · How to use Auto responders.
  • · How to launch an email campaign.
  • · Techniques on search engine optimization.
  • · If product base how to use eBay and craigslist.

Getting online is easy but creating an attractive website, and marketing campaign is what will make you money. If you are in need of help I can arm you with the tools you need to get online, and meet the potential onslaught of search engines, site visitors, and expanding customer base out there. As I said earlier it’s not hard to get online but having some help from an expert by investing in their knowledge, and experience you’re success rate will much greater, and you will reap the rewards of the internet.

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Advertise, Promote, and Market Your Business Online – How to Use the Internet

Business Online Backup – A Necessity

When your business involves a huge turnover of data both incoming and outgoing, it becomes very essential that you find a reliable source in order to have a backup of all the data so that you are not at a loss of the significant details of your clients or your own for that matter. Business online backup services offered by specialist companies will help you to have secure data storage that would help you wade through a difficult situation without any difficulty.

In fact business online backup is a cost effective solution and a safest one too, that helps maintain and monitor your business on the right track. You could get a backup for all your documents in an absolutely secure location. Having a second copy or rather a twin copy in a remote location is always a better proposition in the event of something unforeseen happens to the original.

Offsite secure data storage hence becomes very crucial for, without it, one would have to start from scratch and this would definitely spell a tedious process ahead. With the help of a reliable business online backup service provider you could get your offsite secure data storage done at regular schedules and you could also access them from anywhere and anytime too.

Thanks to the advancement in technology, we can have it assured that we still have access to our important details even in face of a calamity or a malfunctioning with the computers or the servers. Getting apt business online backup solutions for your business means, you are equipping yourself against any kind of a disaster and are making your business disaster proof.

There are different options available on the online platform as to how you could go about your secure data storage and how frequently you could do the backups. Automated file backups as per the schedule predetermined and supporting various operating systems has been found to be a sought after service by many businesses.

As a business would definitely be progressing year after year, it becomes all the more necessary that they look in for secure data storage options. And hence, one has to concentrate on finding out an adaptable, scalable and flexible secure data storage option through which they can always access their important files and also have a backup of the same.

Without business online backup you could definitely lose out on a lot of peace of mind, revenue and business. Protect your business against such losses by opting for a secure data storage system.

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Business Online Backup – A Necessity

Small Business Online Marketing – Attract Visitors With A User Friendly Website Design

Do you have a website for your small business? If you do have a website you are ahead of many other small businesses in your area.

How much control do you have over your website? What type of website is it? A static e-commerce website, one on which the content rarely changes? Do you have the ability to make changes and updates regularly, or do you have to wait for your webmaster? The answers to these questions determine if you will attract visitors with a user-friendly website design.

Your Website is an Extension of Your Business Online

Regardless of the type of business you’re in, if your business is at a physical location, you know the value of creating an atmosphere that makes your customers and clients, as well as potential customers and clients, feel welcome. It may the actual setting of your establishment, or it may simply be the warm, welcoming smile that they are greeted with.

The same is true for your online portal – the door that opens to your business online. Your small business online marketing strategy requires that your online portal or website attracts visitors and encourages them to stay on your site, and later return.

Create a User-Friendly Website that Attracts Visitors

Your website must be designed to attract visitors and make it easy for them to navigate from one page to the next so that they will enjoy the experience and want to return time and again. Furthermore, your website should reflect your brand, the brand you want people to remember after they’ve moved away from your site.

Here are some basic points to attract visitors with a user-friendly website design:

1) If you have a logo for your offline business, it would be wise to have that logo on your website for continuity. Your visitors will more readily make the connection between your offline and online businesses.

2) Your brand may be just reflected in a photograph with a warm smile or perhaps the lettering of your website’s name, which would likely be the same or very similar to the name of your business.

3) Your concern should be about your customer’s or visitor’s experience when they visit your online portal. It should be a pleasant one, and one of the things that will help is to organize your tabs in a clear and consistent manner so that your visitor needs only the minimum number of clicks to get to a page or retrieve the information they’re looking for.

4) Keep your overall design simple and uncomplicated.

5) Make it easy for your visitors to contact you. This may mean the difference between a one-stop visitor and one who becomes one of your best clients or customers in your local business. Although you are marketing online, your business is offline, therefore make sure that the physical location of your business is also listed on your website.

Domain Name – The Importance of a Keyword Rich Domain Name

1) Every website must have a domain name, and by selecting a domain name that reflects, to some extent, what you do or what you offer to your target market, you will be setting the stage to attract visitors to your website.

2) Another point to note is that your keyword-rich domain name may not necessarily be the same as the name of your business. For example, the name of your business may be “Tim, Your Friendly Handyman.”

Your prospect will be searching in Google or one of the other search engines using keywords, and in order for your business to be found your domain name will need to reflect that. Also, because your business should be found in local searches, the name of your town or closest city should be included. In this case if you were in my town your domain could be simply handymanservicesportstlucie dot com or handymanportstlucie dot com. It’s always better to use a dot com. For one thing dot coms reportedly rank higher in the search engines, and secondly, that’s the most commonly used extension. You could lose business if yours ends and people are typing

More and more local small businesses are recognizing the importance of having an online marketing strategy to increase their visibility and attract customers and clients. The first place to start is with a website, which will be the door to your online activities. There are many other aspects of online marketing that can have a positive effect on your local business.

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Small Business Online Marketing – Attract Visitors With A User Friendly Website Design

How to Build a Business Online More Successfully

If you have your mind set on creating your own online business, you will need to spend a lot of time building your business. The process needed to build a business online is fairly similar to building a brick and mortar business. However, when you are choosing to start your business online, you will also have more competitors because of the wider reach of the Internet. This is why you need help to build your business.

Some people have been successful at building their own businesses without anyone’s help. However, if you were to talk to one of these successful business owners, you would find they spent years struggling to make their business a success. If you don’t take advantage of the experience of people who have already been through creating a successful business, you will spend years as well. You can save yourself time by seeking experience from professionals.

One of the most important things you can do when you build a business online is to get the support you need. When you are creating and trying to grow your business, you may end up working on your business all hours of the day, seven days a week. If you end up stuck on something and need help, having someone who is always available to help can be a useful asset. As you have probably heard, time is money.

Before you launch your website to the world, it can be important to make sure it is the best it can possibly be. You don’t want to release a website that will leave your customers looking for someone else to use. If you can get an honest critique of your website before you launch, you stand a greater chance of being successful with your online business. You could always launch your website and see how it does, but if it doesn’t succeed, you have set yourself back.

As you work to build a business online, you need to look for help wherever you can so you can grow your business more quickly. It can take years to get your business to the point you want it to be. With the help of experienced entrepreneurs, you can get the help and support you need so your business doesn’t take that long. Being able to work closely with someone who has already grown his own business can be a valuable asset to your business.

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on How to Build a Business Online More Successfully

Latest Approaches in the Ever-Evolving World of SEO Experts

The world of search engine optimisation is unbelievably dynamic. Thus, strategies and approaches here keep changing almost every now and then. Just including the popular search phrases in your blogs will not will not rank your business on Google SERPs any more. On the other hand, it is now even more important for corporate brands to secure places on Google because if they are not there, then they practically do not exist.

The latest approach to SEO

Thus, the demand for more meaningful content with high-quality blogs and well-planned social media campaign are rising steadily among search engine optimisers. At the same time, it is also important to have mobile-friendly websites for businesses to reach out to a wider customer base. Interestingly, other than providing the updates on its search algorithm from time to time, Google does not provide any other guideline or information for SEO experts. Thus, much of the job of any search engine marketer is based on speculation and hunches.

Ethics and transparency

To make their job even more difficult, Google is becoming smarter with the passage of time. It is now increasingly difficult to avail the shorter ways to success. You just cannot pull the wool over Google’s eyes and get away scot-free with your unethical approaches. Ethical approach and transparency are the keys that Google look for while ranking a business higher up on its Search Engine Result Page. Considering all these complexities, it is obvious that securing desired results from SEO campaigns now take longer time. As such, it has been seen, a campaign may take months at stretch to show the expected outcome. Unfortunately, most clients want to have their desired results as fast as possible. Holding on to patience is another important criterion today to achieve success from investing in SEO and a very few people actually realise this.

The evolved strategies

In this situation, seasoned search engine marketers are relying on the following strategies to drive their campaigns to success.

Create great content, because Google is solely focused on providing users with authentic information. Make sure, your content engages readers and is fresh and original.
Build links with reputed websites through your content. This will help you gaining some quality followers.
Include great title tags to your content that are rich in relevant keywords.
Create and maintain social media profiles, like Twitter and Facebook. Optimising websites for search engines is no more possible without taking help from social media networks.
Last but never the least, business websites need to be optimised for handheld mobile devices as well. Google is now promoting mobile-optimised websites more through its SERP listings than websites that are not optimised.
The internet users are rapidly evolving and their expectations are also rising steadily. They depend on their handheld smartphones to conduct an online search and they are also in shortage of time. Thus, it is high time to modify the strategies to optimise websites for search engines. Otherwise, sustaining will really be difficult for even the most powerful brand in the world.

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Latest Approaches in the Ever-Evolving World of SEO Experts

Situs Judi Slot Online di Situs Nagamenslot


Bukan menjadi rahasia lagi apabila judi slot online telah menjadi salah satu game yang paling direkomendasikan untuk dimainkan. Bagi kalian yang sebelumnya sudah sering datang ke arena casino, tentu anda sudah tidak asing dengan permainan judi slot. Seperti yang telah diketahui, permainan judi slot adalah jenis permainan yang dimainkan menggunakan mesin slot.

Apabila dibandingkan dengan game judi casino yang lainnya, judi slot memiliki karakteristik permainan yang mudah dimainkan. Aturan main yang sederhana membuat banyak pemain tertarik untuk memainkan game ini. Untuk bisa memenangkan game judi slot, permainan tidak membutuhkan rumus penghitungan yang rumit. Bisa dikatakan, cukup dengan menggunakan sedikit strategi dan trik, anda bisa menjadi seorang pemenang.

Untuk bisa mulai memainkan game judi slot online, pemain dapat langsung mengakses situs agen judi di internet. Sebelum bertaruh, pastikan situs agen yang anda gunakan adalah situs penyedia judi slot resmi. Hindari untuk memilih situs agen judi palsu karena dapat merugikan diri anda. Jika anda binggung bagaimana cara memilih situs agen judi asli, ada di Nagamenslot.

Informasi Lengkap Seputar Judi Slot Online di Situs Nagamenslot.

Melalui situs nagamenslot, anda bisa mengakses permainan judi sloting. Seperti yang telah diketahui, situs agen nagamenslot  adalah salah satu situs penyedia judi online asli yang terbukti menawarkan keuntungan hadiah cukup besar. Tidak tanggung-tanggung, keuntungan yang bisa pemain dapatkan dari permainan judi slot dapat mencapai puluhan juta.

Walau di atas telah disebutkan aturan main dari permainan judi slot sangat mudah dimainkan, namun perlu diingat apabila anda tidak boleh asal bertaruh. Bertaruh tanpa mengetahui aturan main dari permainan judi slot merupakan hal ceroboh. Oleh sebab itu, pastikan anda telah mengetahui aturan main dari permainan judi slot sebelum mulai bertaruh.

Dalam game slot online, perlu diingat apabila untuk mendapatkan keuntungan yang besar, permain sebaiknya memilih mesin slot yang tidur terlalu ramai digunakan permain. Pasalnya, mesin slot yang sudah digunakan banyak permain biasanya memiliki peluang kemenangan yang sedikit. Kuncinya, jangan memaksakan untuk bersaing dengan para pemain judi yang lainnya.

Bonus Untuk Pemain Judi Slot Online di Situs Nagamenslot

Hingga saat ini, taruhan judi slot memang dikenal sebagai game casino yang dapat menghasilkan keuntungan hadiah yang besar. Keuntungan tersebut berasal dari penawaran hadiah maupun penawaran bonus di Situs Judi Online Terpercaya. Tidak tanggung-tunggung, jumlah keuntungan yang bisa pemain dapatkan dari game dapat mencapai total nominal puluan juta rupiah.

Untuk bisa mendapatkan hadiah maupun bonus penawaran judi slot, tentu ada beberapa yang harus di patuhi oleh setiap pemain. Salah satu contohnya yaitu ketika anda mengincar bonus new memebr, bonus next deposit, dan bonus cashback. Pamain harus melakukan register ID judi. Bisa dikatakan, bonus tersebut hanya akan didapatkan oleh para pemain yang baru bertaruh.


Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Situs Judi Slot Online di Situs Nagamenslot

Social Networking – A Brief Overview

When and How Did it Start?

Early social networking websites started in the form of generalized online communities such as Geocities and Tripod (1995). These early communities focused on users interacting with each other through chat rooms, and sharing information and ideas around any topics via personal homepage publishing tools which was a precursor to the modern day blog.

One of the first social networking Web sites that started what would become the most common format of the Social Network launched in 1997, that was On this site user profiles could be created, messages sent to users held on a “friends list” and other members could be sought out who had similar interests to yours in their profiles.

Why Did It Start?

Social Networks were created by those who wanted to form an online community that shared interests and/or activities and were looking for a way to share that interest with others at large. Most social network services are web-based and provide a variety of ways for users to interact, such as email and IM services. In general, social networking allows the individual to create a profile for themselves in the form of a personal page, and can be broken down into two categories: internal and external social networking sites. An Internal Networking Site is one that is closed-circuit including only those of a particular workplace, educational institution or organization, allowing users to connect and share information for a very specific purpose. An External Networking Site is one that is open to the public at large and allows users to post and connect with a large audience on a variety of subjects.

Who Started It?

Although Six Degrees would come to be known as the first main stream social networking site, it was largely ahead of its time. It was early in the new millennium when the major players of the Social Networking scene began to surface. 2004 saw the launch of Friendster, followed quickly by MySpace and Bebo. By early 2005 MySpace had already established itself as the powerhouse of the Social Networking field and was reportedly receiving more hits per day than Google. 2006 saw the then almost unknown site Facebook open itself to the population at large. Up to that time Facebook had been a limited network only available to US College Students. With its already core base of loyal users and the ability for user-generated add-on content it quickly became the fastest growing site in the world. According to comScore Media Metrix, the top three social networking sites MySpace, Facebook and Bebo had logged a total of 184.4 million visitors in June 2007 alone. Also in 2007 the online world saw the emergence of Twitter, the site that allowed users to “tweet” short updates about themselves giving all of their “followers” a real-time look at their world and quickly became a favorite for mobile on-line users. With this power trio of sites, MySpace, Facebook and Twitter, social networking went from a passing trend to a mainstream staple.

What is the Media Saying?

According to an article written by CNN reporter Lisa Respers France “In an era when even the president of the United States has a Facebook page and spectators texted and tweeted about Inauguration Day, the power of online and digital social networking is clear.” For the majority of media outlets, the phenomena of social networking is touted as allowing the whole world to become part of the same conversation.


The upside for the users of the various social networking sites is fairly straight-forward. It allows them to connect, locate, rediscover and otherwise enjoy friends and topics regardless of geographical location. It seems that online there is a place for everyone. Businesses especially can gain a boon from the social networking revolution. They are able to reach out to a much larger audience via the emergence of custom social networking websites and this allows them to stay on top or current trends and events and allows them to better understand their customers and tailor their approaches accordingly.


While it is a positive way to connect with the online world, social networking also has its down side. The availability of information makes identity theft a risk, as well as unscrupulous users that leverage the sites to spread malware and viruses. For those choosing to avoid those pitfalls by avoiding the sites altogether, also run the risk of falling behind events in their social circle and appearing unfriendly or stand-offish. For corporations the greatest damage that a social network can do is to it’s reputation. One bad experience by a customer or client can spread like wildfire through the networks leaving the business scrambling to do damage control which carries with it both social and monetary penalties.

Where is it Going?

Michael Rogers, columnist for MSNBC, wrote “The Internet world is relentlessly enthusiastic in its embrace of the latest and greatest, and this year’s new flavor has been social networking. Between MySpace, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Bebo and scores of lesser start-ups, social networking seems poised to take over the Internet. Indeed, some digerati have suggested that Facebook, by allowing developers to write mini-applications called widgets, might become the new Internet.”

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Social Networking – A Brief Overview

Why You Should Delete Your Social Networking Accounts

Everyone has at least one. A Facebook account. A Twitter feed. Maybe a lingering MySpace page. Probably in conjunction with these you are running a LinkedIn page for connecting to work contacts; posting location information through 4Square; or have a personalized iGoogle homepage. Let’s face it social networking has become the hottest way to keep in contact with your friends, co-workers, lost acquaintances, even family. Social networking has allowed individuals to maintain vast social networks that span across the globe. Individuals, groups, and organizations are utilizing social network sites to reach out to their communities. They have become the preferred means to spread interest in specific topics and advertise upcoming local events. Staying connected with the people that influence our lives has never been easier. But with all the advantages these sites offer, it comes with a profound price: our privacy.

We hand over most of our personal information to these sites: where we work, our telephone numbers, home addresses, email addresses, personal history, and much more. All of this information is accessible by not only the system administrators for these companies but also the people we accept as our friends; not to mention whatever information left unprotected that can be accessed by individuals or law enforcement surfing social network sites. Through our posts we provide information on our spending habits, where we are, our personal thoughts on popular culture, where we shop most, even the events of our mundane lives. We upload photos, create blogs, post comments, and comment on other people posts. Through all of this, we are creating mass information databases that can teach enterprising parties a lot about the kind of people we are. As we increasingly put more of our private lives into these vast social information databases growing concern is mounting about the amount of privacy a person has online and the possible profits that can be generated from data collected about you and your friends through social media posts.

Revenue is being invested and generated from information gleaned on social network sites. Companies like Gnip are making money as social media aggregators by designing tools that search user posts for information on specific products and events. This information they collect is then being sold to other organizations to use however they wish. Information can be collected on our political views, our distaste for one store over another, what products we bought, what products we are using, how we are using products, our taste in food, the music we like, the places where we live, etc. Companies can learn a lot about the people who are making posts about them (i.e. who that person is, where they live, where they work, who their friends are, a person’s age, even what that person looks like). Imagine if a government like China wanted to start aggregating some of this information.

The point is that the information people are posting in private to be shared with friends and acquaintances they have made on the internet is not in fact private. Even though the average Facebook surfer cannot access a private account without friending that person does not mean a company cannot obtain information about what you are posting when doing a mass search of “News Feed” comments. Now not all information a company collects from an individual’s posts seems malicious. So what if an internet service provider (ISP) does a search on twitter to see when people are doing most of their online gaming? When coupled with the rising issue of net neutrality ( ) said ISP could be doing this so they can charge more for internet use at these peak gaming times or determine which areas of the world are doing the most online gaming and then raise internet service rates in these areas. This does not include all of the other information companies can gather to use in expanding their profit margins.

Bug companies aggregating comments for personal gain is not the only issue to be concerned with when posting personal information on the internet. Hackers have always been an issue on the internet. Social networks are huge information databases that can provide a hacker with a vast volume of content to use. Hackers break into these websites with ease and STEAL data on millions of people. They can use information taken from your account to learn where you shop online, stalk you, access your email, or obtain specifics about your friends. Each year dozens of Fortune 500 companies get hacked. Everything from account login information to personal data is stolen in these security breaches. Hackers have been know to use hacked social network accounts to steal personal data for setting up fake shopping accounts, spam user contacts, impersonate users, discover information about online shopping habits of users, and more. Hackers can use information stolen from your account to change login information to sites like Amazon or PayPal by studying your posts and reviewing your user comments.

These websites offer users a false sense of security promising that storing your personal private information is safe from malicious use. The problem is that hackers target these sites for the information they contain. But once your information has been leaked onto the internet, there is no telling where it ends up. Most hacker breaches, as with the recently exposed online payment services and the Gawker media hacks, show private secured networks are breached quite often and sometimes these breaches last for months as the hackers syphon off huge amounts of data about users. Even worse the long term affects of such hacks are hard to quantify and discover. But once the data is exposed on the internet there is no way of securing that information again.

Social media sites provide many beneficial conveniences to interact with the world and friends. But those benefits come with a cost. We expose ourselves and contacts to the chance of having personal information stolen. It can take years, even a lifetime, to counter the ill affects of a possible identity theft caused by a social network hack. The ONLY way to keep your information safe is to stop using these sites. To protect your identity and personal information delete all of your social network accounts and do not sign up for any new social network services. Not providing social networks your personal information is the only 100% safe means from having your personal information stolen.

Your computer’s security is always at risk of external invasion. If any of your social network passwords are stored on your computer, it is only a matter of time before they are stolen through an invasion of your personal computer. From there it is only a matter of time before this information is used to obtain your personal information stored in your social network accounts. From there it is only a matter of time before hackers are stealing the information from your social network contacts. Learn how to protect yourself from the invasion of your personal information and how to delete your social network accounts at

Act now before you become the next victim of identity theft.

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Why You Should Delete Your Social Networking Accounts