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Preview: ALLIED by Jeneane Sessum

ALLIED by Jeneane Sessum

Aiming to serve since 2001.

Last Build Date: Tue, 06 Mar 2018 09:07:48 +0000


from warbloggers to trumpeteers

Thu, 01 Feb 2018 23:00:00 +0000

This blog has been the frying pan for my thoughts for a long time now, going on 17 years. That's through GW Bush's administration, Obama's cool 8 years, and now this nightmare: Trump and the alt-right. I look back on how irate we were at "W," at 911, at the warbloggers who took "the war on terror" as their rallying cry to hate anything peace loving. The warbloggers were the genesis of today's Trump base. Ask-no-questions, flag-waving, globe-hating war enthusiasts that suddenly had a platform for hating anyone outside of our  boarders.

Today the warbloggers have come home to roost. They have their President. He has his nukes. And it feels like all the passion and resisting we did back then made not a bit of difference. Maybe we got complacent during Obama, a President that tried to be on the side of the people, or most people. Maybe there is no winning for the good guys in a country with a legacy such as this.

The Alt-Rogue vs the Alt-Right

Thu, 26 Jan 2017 22:50:00 +0000

We certainly live in interesting times. For social media, the use and misuse of a single communications channel may have just changed the course of the free world. Which makes for even more interesting times. I don’t know about you, but I could use a little less excitement. In the recent 2016 U.S. election of Donald Trump, a concerted and strategic social media arsenal was unleashed, one that the Democrats seem to have been wholly unprepared for. How is that? While we (yes I’m one) were busy laughing at people who watch Fox News, a “network” whose news stories and celebrity-talking-heads have been debunked time and time again, the last laugh was on us. “Fake News” became facts, and fears became fuel, and fools became leaders. The new white house itself is proud of its reliance on “alternative facts,” which — although Twitter has had a ball with the notion — is scary as shit. Many of us original bloggers (Y2K here) remember when Ev Williams started Blogger and began self-publishing around that time. When Ev started Twitter, I don’t think any one of us ever saw the future: A POTUS spreading fallacies and threats and rumors, and then drawing dangerous lines in the sand with enemies and allies alike, all in 140 characters or less. How did a medium that once was, if anything, super honest and highly personal — with early bloggers and twitter users making themselves vulnerable and human in sharing from the gut — become a channel for hate, hyperbole and falsehoods? The medium isn’t the message, folks. The messengers are. In this case, the alt-right’s Bannon and company ran a brilliantly strategic social media campaign, complete with a literal paid island of young people manufacturing a digital arsenal of fake new stories that made them rich, along with paid trolls posted at every corner of every comment section that mattered. Bannon thought of that. We didn’t. Because at our core, liberals and progressives believe that no one would believe it, that people are intelligent enough to distinguish hyperbole and alternate facts from truth, and that in the end, we should believe the best about our fellow man, and that love should trump hate. Boy were we wrong. DEAD wrong. So, how should we take back social media? Can we? What would it take? Do we have to fight “fire with fire,” as Trump said last week about national security? While I’m glad we are building an army of comedians like Alec Baldwin and the SNL cast, who is building our army of truth-tellers that can deprogram and sway a public that has already been captured by an army of trolls? One sign of hope this week: the ALT-rogue twitter movement When the National Parks twitter users were silenced by federal order, some brave rangers went rogue and launched their own “AltUSNatParkService” handle. Scientists (@ScienceMarchDC) who have been directed to run all findings through the new administration before publishing them have followed suit with a planned march on Washington and bevy of rogue twitter handles of their own. Suddenly the Alt-ROGUE movement is rising up against the Alt-Right movement. This week – I see it as our best hope. But we’ll need more. A lot more. [...]

Teens, Drama, Dollars

Thu, 19 Jun 2014 22:35:00 +0000

Had my first try at a long-form linkedin post today. we waited 13 years and blogging came right back around.

In Social Media, Size Suddenly Matters (OR: I guess it's not the motion of the ocean)

Mon, 19 May 2014 14:25:00 +0000

LinkedIn's opening up it's Long-Form publishing -- described as posts of "three or more paragraphs" -- while digital publishing boy genius Ev Williams goes after the "medium" market. This, after Ev got us into the babbling mode of 140-character communication in the first place, but only after he trained a dozen years ago to be wordy and prolific on his pioneering platform.

It all leaves online publishers are wondering: what the heck do you want from us?

Short, medium, long? All of the above? And how are their best practices around length when performance is commonly measured through engagement? To engage, don't I have to connect? And if I'm all over the place spurting out 100-character tweets, medium-size mini book creations, 200-character status updates, and 5 paragraph missives, how can I actually have a conversation with you?

Answers will have to wait. Today, I have only questions. What do you think? Please respond with short, medium, and long-form tweets, posts, and updates if you feel so moved.

Georgia Goes High Tech with Email and Text Weather Alerts...

Thu, 06 Feb 2014 01:24:00 +0000

Apparently GEMA just realized such advanced technology was possible. Help. me. Jeneane Dimino Sessum Wow. they're going to send text alerts and emails now. what did they send previously - the stinkin pony express????? telegraphs???? "Don't worry yer purdy head; i'll fax the gubner in the morn." "Effective immediately, a storm warning will trigger a message to cell phones in targeted areas, as in the Amber Alert system, and advise against road travel," said Deal. "We will go one step further with school superintendents by emailing them weather condition updates, so that they have the most up-to-date information when determining whether to close schools."  11Alive It's time for solutions. If you could sit down with Kasim Reed and Gov.Nathan Deal and suggest one real way to put us in a better position for the next winter storm: What would it be? You can read about plans already in place: [...]

Facebook post-mortem, from Facebook comments

Thu, 06 Feb 2014 01:20:00 +0000

Tony Pierce Hey Mark Zuckerberg, maybe you should make it easier for relatives to have access to their fallen family members' FB accounts so they don't have to hope that their vids go viral to get your attention. People do die, you know. My appeal to Facebook We want to see my sons 1 min movie on fB Like ·  · Share · 3 hours ago ·  Mike Rodriquez and 8 others like this. Jeneane Dimino Sessum they collect every other kind of information - ought to be a couple of check boxes for "other(s) who may access" - or emergency contact or something. I mean the dentist asks for that. can't bookface? 44 minutes ago · Like · 1 Rob Lawrence Good idea. Some people might opt for "delete all my shit immediately upon (official) notice of my death". Others might specify " give access to this person and NOT that person." 38 minutes ago · Unlike · 1 Jeneane Dimino Sessum I like that! 31 minutes ago · Like Jeneane Dimino Sessum [ ] Deactivate my acct and donate my images, videos, and posts to a the Internet Memorial (business model forthcoming)[ ] pay $___ to immortalize my profile on facebook - keep my FB page alive foreva: __ allow __ disallow comments[ ] Turn my private profile public [ ] Turn my public profile private[ ] Send login information to my emergency contact at ______ 20 minutes ago · Like · 1 [...]

Smokescreen - my journey off cigarettes

Thu, 05 Dec 2013 15:10:00 +0000

In Smokescreen, I've combined blog posts from the four years during which I quit and started STAYING OFF cigarettes into a book for the Amazon Kindle! If you've ever chewed your nails off trying to NOT smoke, wish you never started smoking, hope one day you'll be able to smoke a magical cigarette made of nothing addictive and have a happily ever after, or know someone who needs to understand these things, GET the book!

My time

Fri, 24 May 2013 03:21:00 +0000

Air thick with algae and driftwood decaying, breeze light but crisp, the lapping of lake waves kept us company. 

The leather reins braided, playing loosely between my thumb and index finger. 

Into the water, hocks pumping, somehow we float, swim, snorting, then back to the beach. 

Down on two knees, a roll in the sand to scratch, wet mud in crevices cooling, the power of ages paws its way to standing. 

Back on, bareback gallop across familiar trails all the way home. 

Ya Down with OCD? (Ya you know me)

Fri, 17 May 2013 13:12:00 +0000

Mental Health Tip of the Day.  I remember when a well-meaning family member told me that if i didn't stop tearing the skin off my fingers boys wouldn't want to hold my hand.  I was 10. Maybe 11. Of all the worst things you could tell a tween with anxiety and panic issues, this would be right up near the top of the list.  Still. The advice was meant to be helpful. Probably motivating enough for the occasional picker.  BUT I was not casual. I started tearing at my feet at 5 years old. To make the skin even. Peel a layer, another layer to even things out. Do the surgery on myself that could not save my father's life. All without knowing why.  So If you have a 10 year old who is ripping their skin off in your own family, consider not saying this to them and instead suggesting some help for anxiety and OCD issues. They will do better with boys long term if they aren't living in a total hell of agonizing distress.  Ya you know me! [...]

Are you kidding me iPhone 5?

Sun, 12 May 2013 00:42:00 +0000

If anyone had told me that you would be able to speak a blog post into a phone I wouldn't have believed it. 

But that's exactly what I am doing. I am not sure how well this will work but if it does no one should have an excuse not to  blog. 

Dude, it works. 

This is a tired dumpster face

Sun, 12 May 2013 00:20:00 +0000


Day ? of dumpster cleanup, and I'm wondering why the bark collar on bando isn't working. Every time something goes kerbang into the dumpster he yowls his displeasure. 

We opted for the bark collar because at the apartment he suffers from both dementia and separation anxiety to go along with his OCD manifested in licking and scratching. All in all not bad for 93 and heart worm positive. 

ANYWAY that hundred dollar bark collar is going back to the store as soon as the 100 percent life sucking dumpster adventure is over. That was the point of this post. When you get a dumpster, the rest of your life must be put on hold to focus Utterly and completely on filling that dumpster. 

Today's dumpster fodder included an old litterbox that was hiding a black snake underneath. More boxes. Lids for things that no longer exist. Broken chair backs. LOTS of papers. Dust. Strapless purses moldy computer bags. Yum!

In a dumpster all things are equal. An accidental gold necklace is the same as a broken baby gate. Ashes to ashes. Dust to landfill. 

I took 150 pounds to goodwill today. The goodwill guy was happy to see me. He eyed my Disney tv and remote. I know who THATs going home with. 

George is calling me. Time to go haul another load. 

Travel light my friends. Travel light. 

the dumpster

Sat, 11 May 2013 15:11:00 +0000

We have, my husband and I, obtained a dumpster to try to get a handle on things. As you know, dumpsters are the Number 1 device for getting a handle on things.

We have the dumpster for 3 weeks, so that should allow quite a handle.

The last time we got a dumpster, the only thing that ended up going in was a king size bed - a bed I didn't really hate that much - and a bunch of empty boxes and wood to make it seem full. That wasn't much of a handle. It left me feeling depressed and incompetent of getting rid of stuff.

But this time we are ready to get rid of stuff.

stuff that is killing us.

so much stuff the house has expelled the people in it, mostly.

This time though, we are ready to get a handle on things, and we have spent hours so far trying, and together saying ONE TWO THREE, TOSS! hurling into the dumpster old desk drawers and bed frames and suit cases covered in cat hair and dust -- and I'm not so sure new species haven't evolved from the combination thereof.


you really shouldn't have to go through so much to get a handle on things.

last night I thought the anaphylactic reaction I had from the cat hair and dust was going to send me to the ER. I could post a picture of my oozing eyes, but it's on my phone and I'm not sure how to beam it onto my old blogspot blog here. Plus it's really gross. It may keep you from ordering a dumpster, and I wouldn't want to be responsible for that.

There's so much more to do. but for the next three weeks I will allow myself to fool myself that the presence of the dumpster means we are getting a handle on things.

And I'll enjoy the days and nights of feeling the fooling notion that things are being handled. And I don't want to talk about what comes next.

Dear Internet: The more I read, the crazier I get

Sat, 11 May 2013 15:02:00 +0000

of course, the more I write the crazier i get
the more i work the crazier i get
the more i cook the crazier i get
the more i rest the crazier i get
the more i drive the crazier i get
and kind of like so on and so forth.

Dog years

Wed, 08 May 2013 16:56:00 +0000

The years leave me. I don't move through them; they pass through me. I notice friction of days cutting, the slicing and surging of minutes moving in and out. As I slow they mock me by rushing past. 

I have never been good with time. Early grief and loss left me without a sense of how long a long time is. Time felt heavy and expansive. Some seconds pregnant with lifetimes of despair. Some years gone painlessly, instantly. 

Time is best measured through the lives of dogs. I have lived five sequential dog lives. King (4-11), Henry (11-17), Jazz (22-32), Diva (30-42), Bando (above - 37-present). 

There have been overlaps and other dogs. Still are. Sophie and Ava are playing outside; Bando measures his days in car rides. But these Big Five dogs are my timepiece, my agenda, and my scrapbook. They have witnessed my undoings and my reconnections, my commotion and paralysis, their panting counting off the seconds like a ticking clock. 

As Bando's days churn by, we have begun to mark time the same way, one carpool at a time, one medication, one walk, one rest at a time. I don't need a watch or an alarm clock. We live the freedom of his waning days without measure. 

Smart post

Tue, 07 May 2013 16:14:00 +0000

A dozen years ago when I started blogging I never believed I'd post from my phone. That was before smart anything, and before all-you-can-eat long distance existed. We blog friends accumulated $600/month phone bills because we wanted to talk that badly. No text. No twitter. Posts were texting. Posts were tweets. And they were sonnets and love songs, duets and improv.

So here I am. In the doctors office waiting room. On a phone. Blogging. Like its nothing. Which is, for us from then, kind of what it has become.

these boots were made for walking all over your blog

Mon, 22 Oct 2012 20:43:00 +0000

It's like I fell asleep and the internet went on without me. Blogger grew up. Blog advertising came of age. There's even a widget to add google affiliate ads to posts. did i grow a beard while i was asleep? maybe so. menopause. you know the drill.

for now, though, I'll be kickin it old school with some new school just for kicks.

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Losing our sense of urgency

Mon, 15 Oct 2012 21:24:00 +0000

We used to be more urgent than the Internet.

A dozen years ago, you would find many a netizen rushing home from work to get online so they could connect with friends, read the latest posts and comments, check their personal email for ezines, or jump on a discussion list. A few of us could sneak a peek at work, but not many. Corporate firewalls were sealed tight, and applications were sturdy and strict pieces of software, not fun three-letter words you can run on a phone.

That lacking begot urgency.

We were faster than the flow of information.

We rode data; data didn't ride us.

Because the enterprise and the personprise were still individuated -- no BYOD, rare instances of telecommuting, and certainly no blogging from work -- we had to expend a great deal of effort just to connect. We sought content; content didn't seek us.

And here we are now, streams and feeds 24/7, an enmeshment of who we are wherever we are, with information following us. Worries of Big Brother replaced by Big Data - what do we do with all of the digital stuff assaulting us, and how do we keep up with our friends.

What is the ratio between interesting things that would be cool to know more about vs. how my friends are feeling--are they hurting? Getting married? Have a new job?  Should I have to go to three different social networks to find out? Times how many friends? And what is the likelihood I'll give up before I find out, distracted instead with the guy who feel 24 miles from space.

We are fat with content now; we are lean with empathy.

But we can't turn back. I'm not sure anyone would really want to. And I don't have the answer yet. George Girton says I should try - something you pay a little bit for so you don't have to deal with ads and have control of your feed. Maybe. But gosh I don't need another place to go, or barrage of information to dodge.

The great enablers of technology are the ones who solve problems like this.  When we had all of the information and no way to find it, Google came. Now that we have all of this information and no way to parse it, I don't know what will come. But something will. Analytics is taking care of the dilemma for the enterprise.

But can analytics scale down? Can it draw meaning from micro-personal information as well as it handles big data?

Now that everything we need to know is out there, how do we visualize toward empathy? How do we make meaning?

down and up

Mon, 15 Oct 2012 01:22:00 +0000

a guy free-fell 24 miles from space today. More than 127,000 feet. He broke the speed of sound. michael o'connor clarke would have dug this. I hope he got a view of it. :-)

digital breadcrumbs for michael o'connor clarke

Mon, 15 Oct 2012 00:08:00 +0000

I've been thinking about you all day, Michael all day. I even went to mass because I felt, well, if it could add in any tiny way to the comfort being sent to Leona from all parts of the globe, then I should do it. Michael, I went for you too. You see, you would be one of the few who could get me in the doors. Can you see me? Standing outside, wondering, having never been to this church, hardly to any church in recent memory, would the side doors lead me awkwardly into the midst of communion lines? Then what would I do? Stick out my hand and say "Amen"? Michael sent me? It took me a minute to make my way in. Would I remember the responses? Did you know some of them have CHANGED? Yes, for real. They don't say "It is right to give Him thanks and praise" anymore - at least not at this church; they say something else, I think, "It is right and just"? Today I didn't feel like it was right or just. I felt like nothing made sense. But in that not-making-sense-ness, I felt you poking my shoulder, poke poke, as I stood in the back. You  tried to get me to laugh. I couldn't help it. I did smile. I didn't make it to the end, but I did stay through the part where all 200 of us prayed for those family and friends who had died. And so I prayed for you. And I stayed for the "peace be with you" part, and shook some people's hands for you and Leona. If only you would have stopped nudging me so I could have stopped giggling. me and my blog brother: guess who came to lunch billability global boiling in case you're wondering michael starts blogsprogs more on blogsprogs lilting kersplosions rauri's breakfast lol (in comments) Google is the new CNN remembering michael o'connor clarke goodbye for now, from me trafcom news missing michael - AKMA aerin guy connie crosby joey devilla david weinberger unsweetened Suw Charman-Anderson Doc Searls some of my favs from michael... Flackster on corante five things you don't know about me peaks of cluelessness professional testimonials  social media WTF?  more online media reflections first posts - 2001 poem - on the walk home Ruairi turns 1 I hope that Michael's  blogs are preserved - so many great ideas, so much he contributed. SUPPORT MICHAEL O'CONNOR CLARKE.  In that, goodness is like love. Not an exchange of market value for a fungible resource; not a path for earning something desired, and certainly not a way to avoid being punished by an icy-hearted magistrate. Goodness earns nothing. Goodness gives good. --AKMA [...]

Goodbye blog brother, for now.

Sun, 14 Oct 2012 15:26:00 +0000

I am thinking of my blog brother, Michael O'Connor Clarke, a best friend I only met once, but a friend I talked to by phone, flew in Second Life with, worked with on client accounts, celebrated the birth of a child with, and wrote with online for the last 11 years. I hugged his children and amazing wife Leona when they came to visit in 2006. Our friendship, interwoven lives painted in pixels and over wires. Every conversation was  ocean deep and jarringly funny. We snorted, guffawed, and plotted revenge against arch enemies together. We brain-jammed ideas together that could change our craft forever. We were PR superheroes, digital nobility, and tip-jar street musicians all at once, because blogging was like that. How is today any different? I see him - he's right there. He's on facebook, the same page, there in the photo, from just some months ago, or the other one, him in the crisp, white, button-down shirt, hand in hand with the kids, telling them some large tale or small instruction--we'll never know. We just know how much he loved them. So how, really, can he be gone? But he is. Can we stop Twitter, just for a moment of silence? Can the Internet slow down to grieve? The constant roll of newsfeeds and hashtags fail to notice. In the end, we have to mean more to one another than a final post, a last tweet. This is the place I came to heal from loss, not to compound it. But we surface into one another's lives within this digital world inevitably to be pulled apart in the real one. When Michael and I first met online, we told each other we were brother and sister separated at birth and given to different parents. Maybe not far off, born into an online family, to fight, tease, help, and sit with one another almost for real. All along, we were tapping out SOSes one post at a time. This much I know: We are in and out of each others lives here -- more out than in physically; more in than out in every other way. I miss him. Already. I don't want him to be gone. And I want his children to know that we are loosely-joined family. As Michael would do for me, I want to tell his children this. If ever Charlie, Lily, Ruairi, you want to know what I loved about your dad, you want a place to stay when you're older and decide to visit Atlanta, you want help with a term paper, you want a ride, you want me to beat up a bully, you want something I can offer, know that your father was my brother, and I am here for you. Leona, for you I weep today, and tomorrow I will smile remembering how he talked about you, how very much he loved you; you were and are and always will be his joy. And I will remember his wit, his humor, his rough voice over the phone walking through cold Toronto  mornings as we talked about clients, kids, and the next great idea. Good bye my brother. Too soon. photos: Some rights reserved by AKMA #supportmichaelocc [...]

Back to the Future - Things Old School Blogging Did Better Than New School Social Media

Sat, 08 Sep 2012 00:59:00 +0000

Back in 2003, my blog had a Google page rank of 9. I burst into the Technorati Top 1000 on a couple of occasions. Considering there were about 1000 of us blogging at that time, this accomplishment was not as "whoa!" as it sounds. Before I started blogging in 2001, a Google search on my name delivered just 3 search results. Four years after, that number would climb to 300,000 and more. That was before businesses barged in, before smartphones and BYOD meant everyone really was "always on," before becoming a 'social media' expert was a lucrative career option. The act of blogging was quite different then. But the idea that there was value in talking to each other across the web has stood the test of time There are things that early "social media" did right -- practices that have been lost amid the growing cacophony of participants. The following are some old school blogging tactics that can be revamped to make conversations more meaningful today THEN: We had "blogrolls," which we took great care to maintain, groom, and grow. These were sidebar lists of people we read, lists and links to friends, enemies, whoever we thought our friends should be reading. These were our pre-app apps for finding and sharing. We didn't do SEO. We did I LOVE YOU. NOW: Blogrolls have fallen out of favor. Most of us find what we read by following links tweeted by our Twitter folowees, or Facebook links to what family and friends are reading. Blogs tend to link more to mainstream articles today, hoping to glean credibility and SEO juice in return. The problem with that is, Google's analytics are smarter than any of us. And Google did, does, and always will reward authentic conversation. That is what has kept its search results useful over these many years. So don't try to out-SEO Google. Try instead to read, care, and talk about what matters to you, then tell other people why you care about it, and why they should care. THEN: Most of us were blogging to get AWAY from our jobs, not as part of our jobs. Some of us were getting fired for blogging, and some others of us even made blogging careers out of getting fired for blogging. NOW: Blogging pays. Whether you are blogging about your personal hobby or about your professional passion, everyone loves a blogger. You are more likely to get laid off for not blogging than for blogging. In the process, however, bloggers have lost their authenticity of voice. How excited can you be about PR, really? Or technology? Or social media? It's great that so many pundits have emerged from the ranks of blogging, and that so many have made careers out of it. But we really liked you best when you threw in the personal stuff, the parts about your kid's visit to the principal, you dad's final days in the hospital, the breakup with your longtime love. Don't forget that stuff. It's what makes this space special, me to you, the closest we get to flesh in pixels. THEN: Good conversations were the ones you couldn't even trace the genesis of. So many people had blogged and linked to so many others, that the discussion became a web, a mini network of intellect or fart jokes within the larger network of nodes.We read other bloggers voraciously. We would seldom post without reading what other bloggers were saying. Links within a post were the only context we had. Links were organic to discussion. Links were a social grace. Links were etiquette. Linking to someone drew them into a discussion by virtue of the fact that you thought the[...]

Pondering the Thumbnail Web

Sun, 15 Jan 2012 06:15:00 +0000

Did some thinking on how brands are best displayed in an integrated social media world at I know, I know, you can't believe I'm over HERE let alone over THERE! Yes yes yes, I'm here. Don't start frothing at the mouth. It's unbecoming.

We'll just see how this goes.

Happy 10th Birthday, Allied.

Sat, 12 Nov 2011 13:43:00 +0000

Dayum. It was a decade ago.

Dog years. Cat years. Blog years.

Still, the more things change the more they stay the same. ;-)

Tidings to my brothers and sisters in the blog class of 2001. And thank you RageBoy!!