SoMe infographics, Google’s Facebook killer, SlideShowPro goes HTML5, North reminds us that social media is not a channel

These are my links for June 29th through July 1st:

  • 10 Beautiful Social Media Infographics – I get pretty excited about pretty data. Good to see you, pretty data. Next stop for you guys? Keynote.
  • PayPal Launches Mobile Express Checkout To Enable One-Click Buying On Smartphones – Uh oh. Amazon is going to have something to say about this.
  • Cashmore: Google building a Facebook rival? Let’s hope so – – I’m looking forward to this for a couple reasons. First: competition is good for this industry. Second: I want to see how the “do no evil” Google mantra holds up in a social networking environment that is starting to push back on privacy. Watch for them to connect their search ad model. I smell new ad options in Google Adwords.
  • Introducing SlideShowPro Mobile – Video: The popular, robust slide show solution for Flash just released HTML5 support for non-Flash devices, eg iPad & iPhone.
  • The Social Media Problem for Companies – @daveatnorth from Portland agency North reminds us that social media shouldn’t be thought of as a fix for marketing your brand in this year’s web. Rather, it is a medium that makes it easier to act on our social nature. Let’s not forget that social media connects people and extends our ability to cultivate relationships. That’s the core purpose of participation in social media. Brands are guests at the party.

Digital ad spending overtakes print, Facebook ad spam, how to add YouTube video to your Facebook Fan page

These are my links for March 4th through March 8th:

Bookmarks for February 13th through February 20th

These are my links for February 13th through February 20th:

WordPress image uploader not working for version 2.6 with Flash 10

Some people have reported the “Choose files to upload” button being broken when trying to add an image to a WordPress post. The behavior I witnessed was that clicking the button simply did nothing. I have also heard that PC users see a blank white window. The quick fix is to use the Browser Uploader instead.

We’ve noticed the issue since upgrading to Flash 10. It seems the deadly combination to break the WordPress image uploader is WP 2.6 (and maybe lower) and Flash 10. Sites that have been upgraded to WordPress 2.7+ work just fine with Flash 10. See my previous post, What version of Flash Player do I have? to check yourself before you wreck yourself.

Big thanks to web guru @joeyyax for sussing this one out, and for pointing out this this thread at

How to track clicks and events in Flash with Google Analytics

Bookmark this Google page and keep it around for reference. Tracking click-throughs in Flash with Google Analytics turned out to be easier than I thought. Use the following ActionScript to make your visitors’ clicks in Flash register with Google Analytics.

on (release) {
_root.gotoAndPlay(3); //your action here

Of course, it’s the pageTracker._trackPageview() JavaScript function that’s really doing the work, so I assume you can call this function from within Flash wherever you can use the getURL() ActionScript function.

I am building a landing page for an online coupon campaign, and am using this code to track the number of downloads of the PDF coupon to compare to pageviews.

EDIT: Here’s another great post with a bunch of examples of tracking click throughs in Flash. Careful though, these examples are for use with the older Urchin Google Analytics JavaScript snippet.

5 basic rules to better accessibility in web design.

I’m kind of a podcast fiend.  So, as a web designer, it should be no surprise that I listen to the Boagworld podcast.  Recently, Paul and Marcus highlighted 5 key tips to designing accessible websites.  Here they are in my words.

  1. Utilize alt tags on images.
    The only way a screen reader (a device used to aid sight impaired internet users) will “see” your image is to describe exactly what the image is in words.  **Savvy designers will realize added benefit here, as search engines will pick up keywords in the alt tags.  Just make sure your alt tag copy is descriptive of the image, not loaded with keyword phrases that won’t aid the sight impaired.
  2. Utilize title tags on links.
    Imagine a web page being read aloud to you.  Now imagine the person reading the page to you encounters a link.  Instead of telling you where clicking that link will take you, they begin to read out the destination URL.  Yikes.  With a proper title tag, you can tell your sight impaired users exactly what clicking the link does.  ie “click here to login”, or “click to visit my portfolio.”
  3. Make sure you have fallback content for rich media.
    Most of us including rich media content will use Flash to do so.  If so, provide content that will be seen if the video or Flash cannot be loaded.  Usually, this can be taken care of with the SWFObject implementation method.  Don’t leave a hole where the media would be, fill it with a backup image or copy.  **Here’s another plus for you cheeky designers.  Continue reading

Battle of the clickTAGs for Flash ad click throughs.

First, a bit of background.  Flash banner ads are usually click-able.  Because the publishing site (ie network TV sites, online newspapers, etc) usually uses a third party ad system to serve and track banner ads, the destination URL for any click through is not hard coded into the SWF (Flash ad).  It is dynamically injected into the ad at runtime with the use of a “clickTAG” parameter in the object HTML.  The ad system handles the pairing of the ad and its accompanying clickTAG URL.

I make a fair amount of Flash banner ads for Grady Britton clients.  I’ve noticed a an annoyance that should be easily solved.  At some point since the invention of the clickTAG, there was a division on the correct case of “tag” in “clickTAG”.  Some publishers require that the variable name be “clickTag”, and others insist that it be named “clickTAG”.

Why does this matter?  It turns out that some of the third party ad systems are case sensitive when it comes to the use of clickTAG.  For me, that translates into creating 2 versions of every ad, one who’s code respects “clickTag”, and the other for “clickTAG”.

image of Adobe recommended clickTAG ActionScriptSure, I could write a simple switch to test which version exists and set accordingly, but the publishers employ QA folks armed with Flash decompilers. If the ActionScript that the decompiler reveals (which by the way, is rarely the actual ActionScript as written by the designer) does not exactly match the structure as required by QA, they won’t run the ad, regardless of whether or not it will work.

So, if the ad serving companies aren’t going to stick to “clickTAG” as recommended by Adobe, then let us designer/developers switch and validate the parameter without QA throwing up red flags because the ActionScript doesn’t look the same as the reference manual.  Creating one off versions of the ads to deal a basic case sensitivity issue is just silly, especially if it can be solved for all future projects with a few lines of ActionScript.

What version of Flash Player do I have?

Some sites will tell you that you need to upgrade your Flash player to see their content. Don’t always believe it. Check your Flash Player version, and compare it to the latest Flash Player version here: Sometimes, the developer makes an assumption about which browser or operating system you might be using. If you don’t match that assumption, they will toss you the “upgrade your Flash Player version” error. Don’t believe the hype!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...