What, No Shark?

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Tuesday, July 02, 2013
photo courtesy of Oxbow Water Ski Team

Perhaps it was the Fonz’ famous water-ski shark jump, perhaps not. But whatever’s in the water at the Oxbow, situated in the wilds between Easthampton and Northampton, the waterskiers of the Valley seem intent on making summer an impressive spectacle. The team, founded in 1980, makes a habit of forming pyramids and nailing jumps, and demonstrates swivel skiing, wakeboarding and barefoot skiing.

All that would be cool enough, but add to it that the team boasts a roster with members from 1 to 59 years old, and also boasts 11 first-place finishes in the Eastern Regional Show Ski Competition.

This year’s high water forced the team to get its practicing underway later than usual, but you can see all the waterborne fun starting this week.


July 5, 7 p.m., free, Oxbow Sports Center, 100 Old Springfield Road, Northampton.

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Easily and Economically Reaching Critical Mass on Twitter

Anyone who has sought to establish a strong, organic presence on the major social networks knows what a tough task it can be. Social network users are pretty capricious, flitting from one popular account to the next as the winds change, and are often especially skeptical of companies and established organizations that try to engage with them. Thanks to a number of services today, though, that allow businesses, on-demand, to buy twitter followers, can be far more easily amassed than in the past.

Network graphs of Twitter activity show a decidedly nexus-centered picture. Far from being a medium of strictly peer-to-peer communication, Twitter instead seems to enable a style of discourse where messages are passed through central nodes of popularity before being disseminated out to the many followers of those accounts. Businesses that want to establish their own strong Twitter presences often make the mistake of thinking that the way to go about it is to engage as consistently as possible with individual, low-level accounts. In fact, however, this is not the case.

Instead, the best way to get established on Twitter is to build up a critical mass of followers as soon as possible. Once these followers are in place, properly designed tweets can be used to much greater effect, as they will spread far and wide through the network with little effort. As such messages are passed along from one low-level account to the next, more and more who receive them will typically decide to become followers themselves. In this way, having a few thousand followers can quickly turn into having tens of thousands or more.

Posted by Doctorseo on 8.17.14 at 14:16



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