Happy Social Media Day 2011! How YOU Can Participate!

In case you didn’t know, it’s the 2nd annual social media day — or #SMDay to all you socially savvy multimedia peeps out there. Let’s take a step back and jump off the grid for a moment to take it all in — after all, if you’re reading this you’re probably over-programmed and need to take a quick walk to ponder what social media is and the power of what it can do for you personally and professionally.

First, what is social media? If you don’t know the answer to that question, you must be: a) living in a rural village (still no excuse — people from remote villages in South Africa have corresponded with me through a Facebook friend); or b) you know that it has to do with Facebook, Twitter, multimedia, etc. but you may not know exactly how to define it; or c) you’re my immigrant Asian mother who has never touched email, thinks Facebook is a cosmetic procedure, and doesn’t know that “Google” is more than baby talk.

If you’re at a loss for words and need a definition — Google it! Here’s the online Merriam-Webster Dictionary’s definition:

social media

noun pl but singular or pl in constr

Definition of SOCIAL MEDIA: forms of electronic communication (as Web sites for social networking and microblogging) through which users create online communities to share information, ideas, personal messages, and other content (as videos)

So the next logical question is — what is social media day? Isn’t that every day?!

A quick Google search (no, Google is not paying me, by the way) led me to Mashable’s definition of the true essence of #SMDay to celebrate “the technological advancements that enable everyone to connect with real-time information, communicate from miles apart, and have their voices be heard.”

I’m feeling immensely inspired because I attended a Social Media for Nonprofits event where Social Media Mavens like Beth Kanter (who inspired us nonprofiters to network and find those free agents), Guy Kawasaki (who taught us how to be enchanting), and J.D. Lasica (who challenged us to streamline our tagline and boil down our cause to a strong, single sentence) shared their Social Media Swag for nonprofit ninjas like me.

I invite you to participate with my Go Inspire Go (GIG) team and I today on this #SMDay 2011 by:

– Facebook/Tweet a message acknowledging that it’s Social Media Day and encourage people to make plans and meet up with at least one of their online friends. Make sure to use this hashtag: #smday2011 and include us in the conversation using our handle: @GoInspireGo.

And for those of you who are always tethered to your telephones, slaves to your SMS, or fanatically Facebook obsessed, perhaps you can do this:

– Facebook/Tweet us a message acknowledging that it’s Social Media Day and ask people to post a comment about how social media helped them reconnect with someone — and then meet up with them in person. We still do need that personal connection, after all.

Then again, sometimes, I think being like my mom would keep me more calm and centered. Someone recently asked me, “Wow, you’ve done so much in your 30+ years of your life. You accomplished your goals to report in a large TV market and for PBS. You teach Multimedia and write curriculum for the University of San Francisco and the Academy of Art. You created GIG, share your blogs on the Huffington Post, Intent.com and have been invited to blog for Yahoo! What does your Mom think?”

The answer is simple: My Mom doesn’t know what multimedia is. Mom recently asked me (in the cutest broken Chinglish), “I don’t understand, how do the word get on com-putah for email?”

Happy SMDay2011 everyone! Looking forward to your comments, Tweets, FB messages — and I promise you if you “like” me, I will “like” you back!

And as for Mom, I’ll get off the grid right now and call her to say hi!

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