The Facebook Effect

by Ed Lau on July 23, 2007

As you’ll recall, I was debating whether or not to join Facebook last week. Not only do I not really want to be on this so-called social networking utility but I’ve heard of how this site is like crack and can suck you into a time-wasting downward spiral. However, Michael told me that it can also be used as an effective blog promotion technique so as I’m constantly trying to improve this site in whatever way possible, I gave it a shot.


I’m managed to prevent the Facebook addiction and after only a few days, I have seen some significant increases in terms of RSS and traffic. In general, Facebook currently contributes about 10-15 RSS subscriptions a day by importing all your blog posts as Notes. You can find out how to do this on Michael’s site. I’m sure time and the number of friends on Facebook (I’m currently sitting at 128) will increase Facebook’s piece of the pie. As a result, I’ve been able to eclipse the century mark on Feedburner for the first time (the two days I was on Digg’s front page notwithstanding), hitting all time highs this weekend with 98-108-108-105 subscribers before dropping back to 98 today. However, I’m almost sure Facebook isn’t entirely responsible. This may also have something to do with being on the front page of StumbleUpon, which has sent over 10,000 readers here to check out my post on Japanese hot dogs at Japadog. Numbers might have been higher if it were during the week.

Speaking of Facebook, upon joining, I used a picture of myself from a recent get-together which Stephen described as looking “like a horn dog with a set of breasts by your head.” Now, personally, I wasn’t aware that having boobs in your face was necessarily a bad thing (certainly better than sweaty men) but I did get the idea. I’m usually behind the camera rather than in front of it so there aren’t too many pictures of me. Seriously, I looked through most of the photos on my hard drive and there are very few of me.

So, I enlisted the help of a friend of mine who’s also a photographer to take a picture of me. I’ve been wanting a new one for my About Ed page since the one of me taking one of myself in a mirror was getting rather dusty. I didn’t really know how to take a good picture but I distinctly remember asking for “a picture that doesn’t make me look like an ass.” She told me to grab a white shirt and a black tie and well, this is the result. Heck, I’m amazed she managed to take a decent picture of me. I think my hand is a little distracting since if I were straightening my tie it would be higher but hey, it looks like me and in a boob-free environment.

in Tech and the Net

{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

derek July 23, 2007 at 3:44 pm

Now the only boob in the picture is you! ;)

Sorry, I couldn’t resist that one. You’ve almost tempted me into giving Facebook a try given the increase in RSS subscribers.

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Saman Sadeghi July 25, 2007 at 11:05 am

That is a pretty GQ picture!

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Stephen July 23, 2007 at 4:26 pm

Don’t hate me because I’m beautiful to both men and women =)

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Michael Kwan July 23, 2007 at 7:14 pm

The new photo looks like you’re trying to get your sexy back.

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Ed Lau July 23, 2007 at 8:23 pm

I brought sexy at least 78% back. JT just finished it and got all the publicity. That bastard.

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ms danielle July 24, 2007 at 6:24 pm

hahaha! great post! when you mentioned facebook to me earlier i thought you were referring to last week’s post. i didn’t know you gave an update. yes this pic is much better, the other one looked like you were at a college party…and it was probably really late. guess i’ll have to join now and see what all the buzz is about. that pic of the sweaty dude was pretty funny too. stephen, you must be irresistible. what cologne do you wear? :)

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Leo July 25, 2007 at 11:27 pm

Nice photo, Ed.
You look like you just played chicken with a metrosexual and won ;)

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Ed Lau July 26, 2007 at 2:05 am

It was one of my many victories whilst bringing sexy 78% back.

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Saman Sadeghi July 26, 2007 at 9:23 pm

You’ve totally inspired me to join up!

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