Bully Behind The Keyboard

BullyBehindTheKeyboardBullies:  It is so easy to be brave when you are nameless, faceless, and hiding behind a keyboard.  Cyberbullying has become a real and frightening part of day-to-day life for kids.  Let me amend that, for EVERYONE.

I have been mulling over writing this piece for weeks but an article in the New York Times pushed me to my keyboard.  From the NYTimes Facebook:

Richie Incognito reportedly called his Miami Dolphins teammate, Jonathan Martin, the “Big Weirdo” and sent him threatening and racist text messages.  

So now a 300 lb guy is intimidating another 300 lb guy via text.  Think this is just “part of the game”?  Think again.  Jonathan Martin quit the team due to the harassment and Richie Incognito was suspended indefinitely.  So what is my point with this story?  Well it’s simple.  If a highly educated (Mr. Martin is a Stanford graduate) and hard working (playing for the NFL takes dedication, hard work, and perseverance) player can be forced out of his career by bullying then how do we expect children to handle the same situation?

Our children are plugged in 24/7.  Every event is Instagrammed.  Disagreements happen over text, not over the phone or in person.  Esteem-killing gossip is shared on Ask.fm.  Strangers can find them on Omegle. (The Omegle tagline?  “Talk to Strangers!”) NSFW photos are sent via Snapchat.  It’s overwhelming.

Children are exposed to inappropriate and even dangerous information online.  Let’s break down some of the well known issues.


  • Instagram:  Have you seen the fun game where kids post a picture of 9 or so girls and ask you to rate them?  The “ugliest” girl is x’d out and the picture is re-posted for the next round.
      • What you can do:  Be sure your child’s account is set to private.  Be sure they only accept friend requests from KIDS hey know in real life. Friend your child on Instagram to see what they are posting and be sure to talk to them about appropriate content.
  • Ask.fm:  This is a scary one.  Anyone can post anonymously to your profile and many children are being bullied by these posts.  A young girl in the UK was bullied so badly via Ask.fm that it was a factor in her suicide.  Her mother is now pushing to close down Ask.fm so other children will not be harassed.
    • What you can do:  DELETE this app.  I have never heard of a good experience on Ask.fm and I have many friends with children who have been bullied while using it.  Dump it.
  • Omegle:  Talk to strangers.  I think that sums up the issue here.
    • What you can do:  Delete this app if you find it on your child’s phone or iPad.
  • Snapchat:  This app flashes pictures to followers.  Some children mistakenly believe these photos are deleted immediately and cannot be shared.  Many users take a screen capture of the photos and share them later. So your child who just showed their junk on Snapchat?  Well it’s probably now over on Instagram too.
    • What you can do:  This is another bad one.  Delete this app if you find it on your child’s phone or iPad

Sitting behind a keyboard makes people artificially brave.  Why not?  There are no consequences.  Use an alias and make a comment – no matter how vile or hurtful – there is no recourse.    I am not talking about children by the way.  I am talking about the adults.  Bullies can be low or high income, highly educated or a high- school dropout.  This behavior of making comments without consequences is in every town and it’s disturbing.  Don’t believe me?  Take a quick look at your local Patch online newspaper and read the comments.  It’s ugly out there and this is the example our children are seeing (reading).

In general our children are more technologically savvy than their parents.  Working in social media I feel like I am a well informed 40+, but the reality of the situation is technology changes faster than I can keep up.  I have a 10 year old that manages the cloud better than his mother.  I have a Freshman who was harassed by text until I contacted the school.  I have a middle schooler who refuses to answer the home phone because she only texts with her friends.  I have work to do.

How can we protect our kids?

  • Check their phones.  I believe children deserve privacy but I pay for that phone and I am the mother.  Check their apps, YouTube history, and every now and again their texts.  YES their texts.  I had a long conversation with one of my children about the difference of being concise and being rude.  Etiquette and kindness are taught, so be their teacher.
  • Educate yourself.  Ask your kids to show you what apps they are using.  Read some articles about children and technology.  Don’t hide your head in the sand and think your child is too young or good to have issues in social media. Even the best kids are exposed to or using something that is not age appropriate.
  • Educate your kids.  Explain what is appropriate on text and on-line.  Encourage them to go phone free for a while.  Teach them what they can and cannot say.  I have a simple rule for myself and my children:
    • If you would not say it to someone’s face or want your mother to read it, don’t put in on social media or on text.
  • Own It. If another parent or the school contacts you about your child’s actions on social media or text don’t assume they are wrong.  Children make mistakes and deserve second chances so take these social media missteps as an opportunity to teach them. 

Children who are bullies probably have issues at home or in their life.  We can all appreciate the turmoil that adolescents face daily, but turning that turmoil into bullying behavior is never acceptable.   As parents we need to help protect our children from bullies and prevent them from becoming one.

We need to help kids navigate the social world.  We need to engage in a conversation with our children.  We must educate ourselves as to what is out there.  Parenting, when done correctly, is HARD.  By using education, communication, and a little luck hopefully we can keep our kids safe and ourselves sane.

A big THANK YOU to my dear friend (and amazing contributing editor at All About Darien) Jacquie Miller.  Jacquie edited this post and contributed some great ideas.
Posted in Coastal Chick Media, Social Media Tagged with: , ,

Facebook Timeline vs. Page

Like Out Page

We often meet with new clients who are confused between their personal Facebook Timeline and their Facebook Page.  In a nutshell, your personal Facebook Timeline is for posts about you, your family, friends and, maybe, pets.  Your Facebook Page is tailored specifically for business, organizations or brands.  And, as such, the Facebook Page is the perfect way to divide your personal life from your professional life on Facebook.

Like buttons are ONLY on Pages.  They are NOT on Timelines.

Like buttons are ONLY on Pages. They are NOT on Timelines.

The #1 reason why the distinction between your personal Timeline and your Page is important?  So people can LIKE you!  The option to “Like us on Facebook” cannot happen on your personal Timeline.  Their is no Like button on the Facebook Timeline.  Only Pages have Like buttons.

Once friends click "Like" they will receive your Page posts in their News feed.

Once friends click “Like” they will receive your Page posts in their News feed.

Once friends Like your page they will receive regular updates of your Page posts in their News feed.

Some other sticking points?  Your personal Timeline requires your birthday and your sex.  Now, that just gets strange if you are a Pizza joint (Aquarius, male).  Instead, the Page has an “About” section where you can define your business, provide location, phone numbers and hours of operation.

The "About" section lets you define your business, provide location, phone and hours of operation.

The “About” section lets you define your business, provide location, phone and hours of operation.

Friends can post on your Facebook Timeline.  On the Facebook Page, followers’ (people who have Liked your page) comments are condensed in the right hand column under “Recent Posts by Others”.  The benefit is twofold: comments are not front and center, and hopefully, you have time to address any comments before they are actually viewed by others.

Recent Posts by Others is condensed in the right hand column.

Recent Posts by Others is condensed in the right hand column.

A great feature of the Facebook Page is the Admin Panel.  Here you will see the reach of your posts (how many saw the post) and notifications of responses.

Post notifications, insights, friends to invite are listed here.

Post notifications, insights, friends to invite are listed here.

The lower right hand box, “Invite Friends” suggests friends that might enjoy your Page.  All you have to do is click on the suggested friend and they are sent an invite to Like your Page.

Now that we’ve described the differences between the Timeline and the Page, are you ready to create your own?  Here are the directions taken directly from Facebook:

How do I create a Page?

If you’re the official representative of an organization, business, celebrity or band, you can create a Page to represent your organization on Facebook.

To create a Page, log into a desktop computer and follow these directions:

  1. Click Create a Page from the More section at the bottom right of your homepage
  2. Choose a Page category
  3. Choose a subcategory and enter the required information
  4. Check the box next to I agree to Facebook Pages Termsand click Get Started

directions taken from Facebook®

Good luck with your new Facebook Page and let us know how it turns out.  We’d be honored to be one of your very first Likes!

Like Us on Facebook for more tips www.facebook.com/CoastalChickMedia


Posted in Coastal Chick Media Tagged with: , , , , ,

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Posted in Coastal Chick Media, Training

The Power of the Like

Anthony Weiner is a man who understands the power of social media.  Twitter brought him down two years ago http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anthony_Weiner_sexting_scandal .  Today, social media, Weiner’s former nemesis, could prove to be his most cherished ally.

Screen Shot 2013-05-22 at 2.35.56 PM

This morning, Weiner announced his candidacy for mayor via a video
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/05/23/nyregion/anthony-weiner-new-york-city-mayor.html?partner=rss&emc=rss&_r=0 posted on Facebook.  According to the New York Times, “The two-minute video was posted online overnight, apparently prematurely, and then announced by Mr. Weiner in a 5 a.m. e-mail. It makes an oblique and glancing reference to the scandal that prompted him to resign from Congress; Mr. Weiner asks voters for “a second chance,’’ but does not apologize for his conduct.”

Weiner had not posted on Facebook since May 30, 2011, days after the scandal broke two years ago.  This  morning his page had three new posts.  Posts prior to May 30, 2011 have been left intact.  Why wouldn’t he start fresh with a NEW Facebook page?  The simple answer – his Facebook page had 56, 655 Likes.

Screen Shot 2013-05-22 at 1.46.23 PM

56, 655 who were partial to him in 2011, can now be specifically targeted in the hopes of winning them back.  Will he successfully woo them and go on to become New York’s next mayor?  Although his chances are considered slim, there is no better place to start than the 56,655 who Liked him in the first place.  Weiner’s best chance at image repair is with the audience who favored him pre-scandal.  Of course, only time will answer the question: Can old Likes turn into yes votes?



Posted in Coastal Chick Media

Two New Social Media Stars

red & orange starfish

red & orange starfish

We love to see newcomers to the market doing an exceptional job in their social media campaigns.  Our latest favorites are a bridal couture boutique, A Little Something White and a real estate/decorating/trend blog, Real In Darien.  Social media harnesses two elements – the power of the consumer and what’s trending in the world around us — to create compelling content that keeps clients engaged, over and over again with the brand.  Both of our latest darlings, (see http://coastalchickmedia.com/?p=146  for last month’s picks) offer terrific visuals and expert information to engage their audience.

Screen Shot 2013-02-25 at 11.36.00 AM

A Little Something White, Ashley Krauss’ gorgeous bridal boutique has a social media campaign that is as exquisite as its gowns.  A clear communication mission of treating the brides with “respect and greeting her with positivity” is evident throughout.

The website is visually stunning, well organized and a breeze to use: http://alittlesomethingwhite.com

They maintain a beautifully updated Facebook page and post often, daily: https://www.facebook.com/ALittleSomethingWhiteBridalCouture

Their Twitter gives you insight into their impeccable taste in bridal couture and design: https://twitter.com/LittleSomeWhite

Oh, and A Little Something White’s Pinterest is a bevvy of bridal desires: http://pinterest.com/littlewhitewall/

Check out A Little Something White’s blog for the couture collections, join them on Facebook and admire the hand sewn lace, follow them on Twitter for the latest in bridal fashions (bridal couture juxtaposed with Oscar gowns) and Pin some scrumptious buttercream cakes or find the perfect posey from the chock full of all things bridal boards.  Whether you are a bride to be, hope to be or just want to reminisce, say, “I do” to A Little Something White.

Screen Shot 2013-02-25 at 11.38.02 AM

Real In Darien “The passion that Kim and Abigail share for architecture, interior design, the decorative arts and of course real estate, led them to develop Real In Darien.” ~Real In Darien

Kim Swift and Abigail Moore, two real estate agents in Darien, Connecticut met when they joined Kelly Associates (http://www.kellyrealestate.com/). While driving around to open houses, they gathered thoughts about houses, housing trends, decorating, and the details that make a house beautiful.  These conversations were the foundation of Real in Darien the blog.

You can check out beautiful homes and decorating ideas on their blog: http://www.realindarien.com/category/real-estate/

Like their Facebook page and you’ll see regular streams of housing trends from paint ideas to the perfect coffee table:  https://www.facebook.com/realindarien?fref=ts

Real In Darien’s passion for design is communicated throughout their blog and Facebook page.  Give them a visit and we’re sure you’ll feel at home (& more than just a little bit inspired).

Posted in bridal, Coastal Chick Media, real estate, Social Reputation, Twitter Tagged with: , , , , ,

10 Facebook Pages We Like!



Check out 10 of our favorite Facebook pages.  We commented on what we specifically LIKE about each page below (listed in alphabetical order).  Give the links a click, and you may find you Like them too.

lisa bonchek adamsLisa Bonchek Adams

Lisa writes about living with metastatic breast cancer with courage, candor and sometimes, a bit of snark.  She presents riveting blog posts and Monday Pleads not to forget your own health needs.  Her page is one of the most compelling on Facebook.





We love the logo and the store.  Bling’s Facebook page constantly updates us on specials, sales and store parties.  We feel confident we’ll never miss a thing thanks to the consistency and gorgeous product shots from Bling.




Darien Library

Darien Library

One of the top ten public libraries in the nation, the Darien Library prides itself on customer service in person – or on the web.  All this is evidenced on their Facebook page which lists book clubs, latest books to hit the shelves, details on little known collections and is constantly updated with new and interesting library information.



Darien Social

Darien Social

Darien Social does a superb job of promoting their restaurant through Facebook.  They do not let you forget a happy hour and happily tout bands and DJ entertainment.  Their pictures are always warm and inviting.  Menu items and specials are a cinch to find.




easton place designs

Easton Place Designs

This is a great example of using your Facebook page to promote your business – in this case, fine paper lovelies.  Beautiful photographs of gorgeous stationary, invitations, calendars etc…  are displayed and consistently updated.





The Itty Bitty Bag Company

The Itty Bitty Bag Company produces unique designer handbags and accessories all handmade by Jen St. Jean.  These adorable bags come in beautiful designs and colors.  The variety and creativity is staggering.  Jen updates her Facebook page as fast as she creates bags – no easy task!





Quintessence’s mission is to “Experience, inspire, inform – it’s all about living well with style and substance.”  She promotes her lifestyle blog of special discoveries that make life so much better.  Whatever catches this style maven’s eye is richly displayed in photos and commentary on her Facebook page.




Ridgely's Radar


Ridgely’s Radar

Fashion, Beauty, Books, Recipes and more can be found on Ridgely’s Radar.  Ridgely shares ideas, great finds, books, recipes and anything that speaks to her.  She’s a fashion insider sharing her passion with you – everything from antique baths to the perfect opaque black tights.





Seana Method

The Seana Method – Freedom Through Organization

This delightfully task oriented page gives daily organizational tips – GO! (Get Organized) in doable doses.  Seana encourages tackling the pantry one day and sorting out the linen closet another.  She gives step by step instructions that make these chaotic chores seem breezy.  She includes timely advice like, “Students, now that midterms are over, clear out your folders and store your first semester of work in a box file.”




venture mom


The VentureMom.com Facebook page promotes moms starting their own businesses.  Links to the Venture Mom shop where you can buy the mom’s merchandise are a simple click away.  Other cool offerings are tips on what a
“VentureMom Wears” and home decorating advice.


What all our favorites share is lovely layouts, excellent content and CONSISTENT updates.  Add them to your LIKES and you’ll see what we mean.  Look for future updates to our Fave Facebook Pages and feel free to add yours too!



Posted in Coastal Chick Media Tagged with: , , , ,

How to lose your job with one tweet.

Tweeting.  It’s a beautiful thing because when done right it can be edgy, timely and informative.  Twitter is the platform that forces you to be make an immediate impact with only 140 characters.  It’s not for the faint of heart.  It’s also not for the poorly organized.

Last night @kitchenaid sent out this tweet during the debate. (Did you follow the debate on twitter?  No?  It was the place to be, I recommend just reading your stream for the next one.  It’s great stuff.)

image via Mashable.com

So, it’s obvious that a member of the KitchenAid social media team forgot to switch to their personal account.  We all realize this was probably a young, first job out of college, type of kid. It was a simple mistake.  All will be forgiven don’t you think?

No… not exactly.

Working in social media I can handle up to five or more twitter accounts a day.  It gets confusing.  I have acquired a multiple personality twitter disorder.  And yes, I have tweeted from the wrong account. I was lucky,  I wasn’t trying to be an edgy hipster and it was harmless but this KitchenAid mis-step is a great reminder.

So remember, CHECK YOUR ACCOUNT before you hit send.  It seems simple enough, but in this fast paced media world it’s an easy mistake.  Unfortunately one bad tweet can send you to the unemployment line.  At least you will be in good company, it sounds like Big Bird is pounding the pavement too.


Posted in Coastal Chick Media, Twitter Tagged with: ,

Better than Botox!

I hate that I have to put my reading glasses on to read the directions on hair products – in the shower (I know, lather, rinse, repeat, but what if it’s changed?).  It also irks me that I must clutch my readers in restaurants.  When I forget to bring them, I’ve been forced to order the special or “what he’s having.”  I feel chained to my reading glasses and I resent it.  So I’ll be darned, if I have to whip those babies out just to read a text on my iPhone!

TXT L8R = I can’t find my reading glasses.

Luckily, my neighbor, Katie, shared a nifty little tip for the 40+ crowd on the iPhone.  No more reading glasses for iPhone activities.  It is better than Botox for taking years off your age.  Go to:




Large Text

Pick your point size from 20pt to 56 pt.

Voila!  No more reading glasses necessary.  Just keep in mind, the less vision impaired, say the stranger in the seat next to you, will be easily able to read your texts too.  A small price to pay for vision and the appearance of youth.

Posted in Coastal Chick Media Tagged with: , ,