Category Archives: Facebook

Today’s the Day!!!

It is an exciting day in Duranland!  Duran’s latest DVD, a concert performance entitled A Diamond in the Mind, is being premiered via Facebook at 2 pm EST.  For some of us, it will be the first chance to see most of the performance (I have seen a few clips like Planet Earth and Wild Boys).  Others have had the DVD in their hands.  Yet, for all of us, it will the first time to see the live question and answer session with the band.  Also, and perhaps more importantly, it will be the only time to watch something like this together.  Yes, obviously, all Duranies can’t be together today but we can via the internet!  It reminds me of those Live from London screenings that others mentioned earlier this week on this blog.  For those of you who weren’t able to attend one of those in late 2005, it was a great time!  I was lucky enough to be able to drive to Chicago and see the screening with friends.  There were 10 screenings around the country in which the Live from London DVD was shown in movie theaters.  The band had filmed some introduction that was also aired.  Now, some could argue that it seemed wasteful to watch a DVD in a movie theater, it was completely worth it.  The theater was full of Duranies and by the second song, we were all singing along.  It felt very similar to a regular concert atmosphere.  I suspect this will feel the same!!!  Of course, I think this might be a step better as it isn’t limited to people close to 10 screenings but is open to everyone!  Yes, the time doesn’t work well for everyone but it still allows for everyone (no matter where they live) to participate if they so choose.  Also, instead of filming a clip, the band will appear live to answer actual fan questions!  We didn’t have that opportunity for Live from London. 

I will be watching today’s premiere from a friend’s house.  It will be a little Duranie party!  I will also be in communication with Rhonda (duh) but I hope to be around various social networking sites so that I can participate with all the Duranies around the world!  See, to me, this truly is a win for the fans.  We get to watch Duran all together.  We get to ask questions of the band.  It has all of the best qualities of fandom, in my opinion!  So, how about the rest of you?  How are you going to watch today’s premiere?  Will you be watching by yourself?  With other Duranies?  What about questions to the band?  Did you ask any?  I confess that I asked one.  Obviously, I won’t hold my breath that my question gets asked as I’m sure there were TONS of great questions asked!  Will you be participating with other fans online?  Where?  Twitter?  Facebook?  Message boards?  Some other place? 

I’m sure you all won’t be surprised to know that Rhonda and I will be reviewing it all tomorrow.  I’m not sure how much detail we will go into about the actual DVD part as we might wait to do that when we actually get our copies.  Yet, I’m sure that we will talk about the question and answer session.  We will also be discussing what it was like for the fan community!  As you can tell, I’m excited!  I can’t wait to see the show!  I can’t wait to see my local Duranie friends!  I think today will be fun to be online and react to everything together!  It is a good day to be a Duranie!

-A

If you need more information about today’s digital premiere of ADITM, I refer to Rhonda’s posts earlier in the week, which you can read here.

Salt in the Rainbow

I’m having difficulty getting started today…and no, it’s not a hangover from fireworks, food and a few adult beverages over the course of our Fourth of July festivities yesterday.  In many ways, the holiday was really a rainbow of sorts, and today is the salt.  It feels very much like a Monday, which is a sick, cruel joke (Midweek holidays are just wrong.), and it’s also a sad six month anniversary for a friend of mine who lost her twelve year old daughter named Jessie to cancer (DIPG, you can google it) earlier this year.  I think of that family nearly every day, and whenever Jessie comes to mind, I give my kids an extra tight hug.  I’m a mom first and foremost, and I just can’t imagine what it must be like to lose a child – regardless of whether your child is four-legged and furry or human.  So to Stacey and Erik and your family, I hope you are all hugging one another tightly today.  This road seems impossible at times…but I know you’re navigating the best that you can. I hurt for all of you.

What I would like to do here though is put out a bit of an appeal with regard to our book and the chapter I am currently working on, which is conventions and meetups.  I myself have planned a convention for Duran Duran fans in 2004, but I would really like the insight of others to include in my research on the topic. Have you been to a convention (even if it was the one in New Orleans in 2004)?  Were you there as an attendee or a planner??  Have you ever attended other Duran fans meetups or other events?  What about Duranie sleepovers or parties?  If so – I want to hear from you!  I’d like to know about your experience, how you felt when you attended such events or planned them.  Did it help you participate more fully as a fan?  Did you learn to appreciate being part of a community?  Do you think you became a bigger or more loyal fan as a result?  Please note than when I ask if you became a bigger fan – I don’t mean in relation to others – I mean did you feel like you loved the band even more than you did prior?  If you have anything you’d like to share with regard to that topic, please email me (Rhonda) at dailyduranie@gmail.com.  Please put “Convention Chapter” in the subject line, thanks!

Have you bought your ticket to the Facebook Premiere of A Diamond in the Mind yet??  If so, I’ll see you on Sunday….look for me, I’ll in the front on Dom’s side!  

-R

I Take the Dice…or a Diamond…or just a piece of cake!

I love it when good things come together.  Some of my favorites?  Peanut Butter and jelly, ice cream and hot fudge, cheese and crackers….

Duran Duran, Qello (pronounced “kwellow”…like yellow) & Facebook….all rolled up in one yummy premier.

After getting myself thoroughly confused yesterday, I was pleasantly surprised to be contacted by Hagan Blount of Qello yesterday afternoon.  Hagan is the Director of Social Media for Qello, and he was kind enough to walk me through what Duran fans might hope to gain by grabbing a premiere ticket to see Diamond in the Mind on Sunday.

Ultimately, this premiere isn’t meant to draw from DVD or Blu-Ray sales, and that’s an  important point.  This show will be sort of like the frosting on a big cake, because while the show itself will be amazing – through the power of Qello, I’ll be able to squeal with delight over JoSi moments with Amanda, even though we live thousands of miles apart.  I’ll be able to chat with my dear friend Fabiana, who lives in the opposite hemisphere, about her painted face appearing above the band in Rio…and I hear that the band has even done an exclusive audio commentary for the premiere!  When the show is over, I might even have a chance to tell the band just how incredible it was to see them perform in their own country, since the band will be calling in from their tour stop in Istanbul to do a special Q&A session for the Facebook Premiere after the show.  It’s adding another dimension to our viewing experience, and while sure – it’s going to be great just to get the DVD or Blu-Ray, I think there’s something extra special in watching with other people who get Duran Duran just as much as I do.

It’s the sweetness of the extras that put me over the edge, and yeah…for less than $5.00 I’m willing to bet the cake is going to taste delectable. I can’t even get a large coffee at a local Starbucks with all the trimmings for that.  The number one comment I have read in the past 24 hours regarding the Facebook premiere is “Why should I pay for this when I’ve already paid to get the DVD?” While I would agree that on first glance it might seem to be the very same thing as watching the DVD once it’s delivered on the 10th of July, it’s really not for one simple reason: community.

One constant that Amanda and I come back to over and over during our research on fandom is the idea of community.  While the band and their music was/is the catalyst; it’s the community, the connections people have made with one another, that keep us returning through fantastic music, rough moments, and hopes for the future. I have to admit, I don’t even have the DVD or Blu-Ray on pre-order yet because watching it here alone doesn’t hold the same excitement that seeing a live show with friends would.  I’ll eventually order it (I promise!), but while I’m interested – I guess I wasn’t that excited.  Until today.

One of my biggest concerns with the premiere was my overall confusion as to where to get what and when.  The answer is embarrassingly easy.  One needs to buy the ticket through the Premier application on Facebook. (You can find this right here.)  I did have concerns about Facebook security, purely because like most of you – I’ve heard enough nightmares and had my own account hacked more than once.  I’ve been assured though, that since Facebook bought Zynga (who powers the Facebook “credit” application), those issues have been addressed.  While I can’t promise my readers the unthinkable will never happen, I can say that I did go back and buy the ticket and I refuse to live in fear.  Concern, maybe…fear?  Nevah!  Once I purchased the ticket, an email was delivered to me with instructions of how I can go over to Qello to experience my 30 day “All Access Pass”.  I took a quick peak, but I can promise – I’ll be going back over there during any spare time I can carve out of my day.  Did you know they have the Rio Classic Album video over there? They have videos from Culture Club, INXS and much, much more…and this is just in beta. On the day of the premiere, I understand that there will be a link that those of us who bought tickets will be able to access, and I’ll be there waiting for the show!  As I said yesterday, I really think Qello is worth checking out, and I can imagine that in the coming years, we’ll be buying tickets to experience more and more concerts “live” online.  Can you imagine the day when we never have to miss a single Duran show simply because we can’t travel to get there?  I can…and I think the day might have arrived.

So, after chatting with Hagan, he convinced me to run and buy my ticket, so I did.  I know many of you are yet to be convinced, and perhaps my blog does nothing to sway you. While I can understand that, I also have to say that it’s less than $5.00 to try this out.  Many of us spent over $60.00 to order the deluxe package sight unseen that we’ll watch in our own homes with no one around to be excited with (in most cases, anyway).  I paid less than five bucks to watch the presentation, hear an exclusive audio commentary, chat with friends during the show, and participate in an online Q&A after the show with the band.  Seems like a pretty fair deal.

Now to win one of those VIP tickets….(I have no idea what’s included with those, but I want one!)  See you on July 8th, make room for me in front of Dom!

-R

Want You More (Well, Duran Duran anyway!)

I’m still trying to figure out Qello…the Premier application on Facebook…VIP tickets…and all of the contests leading up to when the postman finally delivers my copy of Diamond in the Mind to my house. It’s Monday, and my head swims. Could be from a very long weekend, could be confusion, but could also very well be from the pitcher of sangria I made yesterday for the adult family members present at my sons thirteenth birthday party….

I don’t know about anyone else, but I’ve been hesitant to sign up and pay my $4.90 to see Diamond in the Mind “live” next Sunday (July 8th). It’s not that I don’t want to part with my money, it’s that I really just don’t get it…and I don’t mind saying so. Surely I can’t be the only one out there that is a little befuddled. I had a fairly good run of keeping up with the technological advances until now. I knew and understood the varying sources of social media and entertainment. I was a whiz at Facebook, and while I still don’t love Twitter, I use it. More and more often now though, I’m hearing of new apps and things that I not only have never heard of, but embarrassingly enough, I have no idea what they are for, how to use them, or why I’d even feel like I need them. Should I just go grab my rocking chair and be done? Probably not. So, like the good Duranie I am, I did some reading this morning and I was rewarded not with answers, but with more questions. This is troubling.

I guess part of my trouble is that of course, the concert isn’t really live. Not that it should be, but it’s more of a case where I’m wondering if it’s really worth paying to see it online as opposed to popping the disc into my Blu-Ray and watching it when it finally gets to my home a few days later. I see that they are promoting the event as something that will be broadcast worldwide, so of course that means that while I’m watching here at home in California, theoretically Amanda will be watching in Wisconsin, my friend Michelle will be watching on the east coast, and my other friend Michelle will be watching in the UK…and so forth. I see there is also to be a live Q & A with the band as they call in from Istanbul immediately following the broadcast on Facebook…or is it Qello?? I took some time this morning and checked out the Qello website. It would seem that for a music fan that likes an abundance of concerts and things, Qello is the sweet spot. It reminds me of a cable TV station that solely runs concert video, along with some extra yummy tidbits on the side. If I were sans children…I’d consider an ongoing membership, but for me, getting TV time is difficult, and my computer time seems to be spent writing and blogging with very little actual video viewing. After thoroughly reading up on Qello (and no I still don’t feel as though I’m an expert), I checked out the Duran Duran Facebook page. Apparently this premiere is being done through streaming on Facebook (Again I must ask – wasn’t this originally going to be streamed using the Qello app?  I’m confused!), and in order to “attend” this premiere, you’ve got to buy tickets, which appear to only be available through Facebook unless you really want to spend $4.99 a month to have “all access” through Qello.

I have no trouble with the money to see the premier. I want to make that clear. I know many fans who have a real axe to grind regarding that, but that isn’t where I’m headed. Those of you who do have a problem, I get it – and if you want to write a blog about that, feel free. My trouble is that I don’t like the idea of giving my credit card info to Facebook due to their continued security issues, and yet it’s not clear what is the best way to use Qello…or if I should just view the show through Facebook…if that’s even going to work. (I’ve got visions of the whole thing crashing due to site traffic, but that’s just me overthinking it all, I’m sure because that sort of thing never happens, right??) I just don’t quite get it.

I don’t necessarily think that this is a case of mixed messages or lies of omission…or impropriety on the part of the band (Just trying to cover all arguments I’ve seen, some of which I feel are ridiculous.), I think it’s mainly a case that I’m completely misunderstanding, and I’m sticking my neck out to say that perhaps I’m not the only one. If I am, well…it wouldn’t be the first time. I really can’t tell from looking at my “friends” or even Daily Duranie’s Facebook “friends” just how well “attended” this premier will be. However, I do believe that with a little more explanation as to how this will work, those like myself who might be on the fence will be happy to jump on over.

Here’s hoping someone will read, notice and be willing to help some confuzzled fans!

-R

Doesn’t Have to be…Anonymous!

The Daily Duranie has been in existence for over a year and a half.  During that time, we have posted daily with the few exceptions of times without internet over in the UK.  Thus, we have had quite a few posts.  Likewise, we have a number of followers here as well as on twitter.  We also have a number of friends on facebook.  Since the beginning, we have had a number of comments here, on twitter and on facebook.  I hope it is completely clear that we welcome comments and discussion.  That said, as a student of fandom, it fascinates me why we have the most “friends” on facebook and the least number of followers on twitter.  On most posts, facebook is the location with the most discussion.  Here, discussion, sometimes, does not happen, which is okay as not every topic might be worthy of discussion or create a reaction, one way or another.  Yet, it is fascinating to me how so many of the comments here that disagree with us or with our readers are done under “anonymous”.  Why is that? 

As I stated in the first paragraph, we have the most “friends” on facebook, then on twitter and a few followers here.  Now, I’m willing to bet that there might be crossover between two of those groups or even three groups.  I’m also willing to bet that not everyone reads the blog daily or even weekly.  Nonetheless, we have way more readers on a daily basis than what our blog followers would indicate.  Fascinating.  Why is that?  Why would more people friend us on facebook?  Maybe, it is because it seems to be easy to friend someone on facebook or follow someone on twitter.  It seems to be much easier to do either of those things than it is to be a follower on this blog, since the formatting of blogger requires a different account to connect to.  Okay.  Thus, I can sort of understand why people wouldn’t indicate that they are followers here.  Why are there less followers on twitter than friends on facebook?  It seems to me that twitter is just as easy as facebook.  In fact, I would go a step further and say that twitter is even easier than facebook!  After all, there is no need for confirmation when following someone.  So, what’s the difference?  Are there simply more Duran fans on facebook?  Do you think that is true?  I won’t lie.  Rhonda and I would love for us to have more followers everywhere, but especially here.  We would love for the number of followers to closer match the number of readers we have on a daily basis.  I suspect that we would get more commenters then as well.

Speaking of comments, out of the three areas, facebook often has the most lively discussions.  (Of course, it seems clear that not every person commenting has actually read the blog, which is a little frustrating since we take the time and effort to write).  It seems like people aren’t afraid to disagree with our points of view or with other people’s points of view regarding some topic in Duranland.  This fascinates me as many people (not all) use their personal facebook pages when commenting on the daily blog topic.  Thus, people don’t seem to be afraid to put themselves and their opinions out there for others to read and respond to.  As for twitter, it seems harder to have discussions on there due to the character limit but it does seem and has been possible.  Twitter may or may not be as personal as facebook can be.  People can show who they really are and can hide who they really are.  Perhaps, that changes what or what does not get said.  I don’t know.  This place, on the other hand, seems to be filled with anonymous comments.  Obviously, there are lots of people who post comments openly as themselves but there are plenty of people who don’t.  Is this simply a situation of the pain-in-the-butt blogger getting in the way?  Maybe.  Perhaps, that is the case for some.  It seems interesting to me that many of the anonymous comments are one that either disagree with us or with other readers.  It is rare to find a comment that disagrees with us, strongly, for example, in which the person commenting is open about who they are.  Something to ponder.  If people aren’t afraid to criticize us or each other on facebook, why won’t they do it here?  What makes this place so different?

I don’t have the answer for that.  I can only keep encouraging people to comment here (again, I recommend following us here first).  After all, we are totally cool with people disagreeing with us here (or on facebook or twitter).  Heck, Rhonda and I don’t always agree.  I would like to think that we show people that it is okay to disagree as long as we do it respectfully.  Perhaps, that is part of the problem, though.  Not everyone comments back with respect.  Duranland can and has gotten ugly at times, for some people.  Could that be why people worry about commenting here?  Again, I use the example of facebook and say that there is a lot of comments on there.  Could it be that this seems more permanent?  Could it be that it seems more open to the outside world since as a blog, it can be read by anyone?  I don’t know the answer to any of these questions.  I would love to know what the rest of you think.  What’s the deal with both the number of followers and what’s the deal with the comments?

-A

Promotion Clips and Excitement

Could my blogs get any later in the day?  Of course, the answer is yes.  I still have over 4 hours in this Saturday.  I don’t really have a good excuse to the tardiness of this blog.  Today was the first day that I didn’t go anywhere in months.  Months.  I know that I confused my poor cat, which couldn’t figure out why I wasn’t jumping out of bed to get ready to go.  While part of me thought it might be good to take this day to get a lot done, the other part of me preferred to do not much.  I did get a few things done, in between naps (I took two!), including a few Duran related items!  First, I hooked up my new blu-ray player in order to be ready for the upcoming release of A Diamond in the Mind.  (By the way, I’m sure that Rhonda will either be entertained or horrified that it took me since the end of April to do this task!)  The second thing I did was to try to catch up on the news front, the Duran news front, that is!  Some of what I found I will be sharing here!

Obviously, part of what I learned about what has been happening in Duranland has to do that upcoming DVD/Blu-Ray release.  Apparently, the band announced a digital premiere of it on facebook.  The news release can be read completely here.  I’ll summarize what I understand about it here by using those fantastic journalistic questions of who, what, when, where, why and how.

Who:  Obviously Duran Duran

What: “Duran Duran to stream their latest concert DVD, A Diamond In The Mind with EXCLUSIVE Audio Commentary and LIVE Q&A.”  As I understand it, this commentary and Q&A session will be special to this streaming, which I’m sure is done to encourage viewing.

When:  July 8th at 2 pm EST 
For some people, like me, this would be the first chance to see it and, for others, the DVD will already be available.  Again, though, I guess with the additional commentary and Q&A session, the date isn’t so important.  I do find it interesting that it is on a Sunday afternoon.

Where:  Facebook through some application called Qello.
Is this a case of Duran acknowledging the number of fans on Facebook or a case of them encouraging fans to join facebook?  Both?  No matter, I find it interesting that they are once again acknowledging social networking like they did with the youtube streaming of the show directed by David Lynch last spring. 

How:  This application, Qello, will cost $4.99 for a 30 day all access membership. 
I know nothing about this app, but it appears to be new based on this quote from the news release:  “The program launches June 18th with several weeks of festivities on the Duran Duran Facebook page, including Digital Premiere ticketing, and VIP Ticket and CD giveaways. To promote the Premiere, and make the experience more social, fans that post about the event via Facebook will gain access to a special sneak preview.”
Will this $4.99 be worth it?  Is it lame that they are charging money for this streaming?  Like many other things related to Duran, I find myself assuming that I will be purchasing this app in order to watch, assuming that I can figure out what to do when the time comes!  I’m such a sucker!

Now, if all of that didn’t get you excited for ADITM, my friend, Faby, found a lovely, lengthy preview on youtube, which I will now share with all of you after she shared with me:

Of course, beyond ADITM, there have been TV and radio appearances.  I am focusing here on the TV appearances because I haven’t been able to find many (most) of the radio interviews.  If you know where to find them, please post the link for me and everyone else!  Thanks!  As for the TV appearances, I know that Simon appeared on Loose Women in the UK.  I also read about appearances on Sky Sunrise, ITV Daybreak and CNN.  Again, I completely suck because the only one I could find was Loose Women, which I have included below.

My reaction to this clip was that it was enjoyable despite being like every other interview on TV with the list of successes in the beginning and the video montage, which, of course, included Rio!  I’m not sure what the deal was with the bananas but I like seeing the silly side of Simon!  On a more serious note, one comment I found interesting was when Simon stressed that the band only focused on the songs and not the videos, back in the day.  Of course, I think that they focused on the music more but following that statement up with the intelligence of the managers imply that the managers did everything with the video.  I always had the impression that the band gave input to the videos.  Am I wrong?  Also, on a serious note, I loved the statement about how ADITM was a celebration of being able to sing again.  On a personal level, the UK tour felt like a celebration for me, too!

Now that my blu-ray player is hooked up, I have seen that long preview, and had Simon describe ADITM as a celebration, I’m really ready to see it!!!  I can’t be the only one, right?  Right???? 

-A

New US date! Big anniversary dates!!!

First of all, did you see Duran Duran’s Facebook page this morning?  If you did, you probably already know that they are playing in Durham, North Carolina on August 21st at the Durham Performing Arts Center.  So to recap:

August 21 – Durham, North Carolina
August 29 – Chicago (Ravinia), IL

Did they give us the first and last dates of the US “superquicklikeabunnytryandcatchusifyoudrivesuperfast” tour?  Hard to say, but I look forward to filling in the rest of the dates.  That’s a serious HINT to Duran Duran’s HQ.  😉  I could continue to speculate, but instead I’m trying to figure out how I can drive to Wisconsin, pick up Amanda and then continue on to North Carolina.  Oh, and I’ve got to come up with a plan on how to convince my husband that this is all necessary and prudent.

Please be aware that if Duran Duran announces more dates throughout the day, this blog WILL be updated!

This date also marks two very special anniversaries in the lives of Duranies as well:

On this date in 1984, Duran Duran played Madison Square Garden in New York City.  I was not there on that fateful evening, but I was at home in Glendora, California.  The show was broadcast on KIQQ – which was a local radio station at the time (now defunct).  Somewhere, deep in my Duran Duran collection, lies a CD of this show.  What I love about the show, or at least the memory of it, was that on that night I was in my bedroom, observing the ridiculously obscene bedtime that my parents insisted upon.  I knew the concert was going to be on, so I went to bed on time, and snuck my Walkman into bed with me, slipped on the headphones and wrestled with finding just the right position for the Walkman so that it’d pick up the station without static.  All was fine and good until the band came on and I got excited.  I must have giggled at some point or something because it wasn’t long before my dad came in and busted me!  He took the Walkman away, I was grounded for a week, and never got to finish listening to the show until about 2004 when one of my friends happened to give me the CD.  True story!

If that all weren’t enough, the European release of the full All You Need is Now album happened just one year ago today.  What a year!!  There have been some major highs and serious lows to the year, with more to come on the horizon I’m sure.  There are days when it feels like I’ve barely blinked since the release, and then there are other days when it feels like last May and the UK-tour-that-wasn’t was a lifetime ago.  Makes me both wonder, and even kind of fear…what will come next!

If you haven’t checked Duran Duran’s Facebook page lately – you really should!  They announced that they’ve switched to Facebook’s “Timeline”, and they’re inviting all Duranies to come and share.  I’ll be curious to see what that timeline looks like in a week from now with all of the “sharing”!

-R

Boundaries are not evil (sounds like a good book title, John!)

I’ve written a few times about how I sometimes struggle for topics to write about here on the blog.  I would love to blame the band for moments of “non-activity”, but I just reminded myself that this blog is not supposed to BE about the band, so the band gets a pass for today.  Today was once again, one of those days.  In an earnest attempt to find something to spur my creativity, I checked out our email, and then our Blogger account. (Do you ever just think about looking into a very dark endless tunnel??  That’s our email box!)   Sometimes people will comment on something and it’ll get me thinking, and that’s what happened today.  There was a comment on a blog Amanda had written over the weekend (Searching for Reasons, found here), and a comment came in just last night.  Anonymous responded to something Amanda had said about boundaries and the way Simon tweets/blogs.  That person had actually referred to something I’ve said in the past about his style of tweeting and blogging. (mainly that it confuses the hell out of me, which is true.)  I responded and quickly shuffled out of our door to take the youngest to school.  On my way back home, I thought about what the person had written again and found myself composing a blog on the subject.  The challenge for me was to remember what I was thinking so that I could get home and get it written!

In my real, everyday life I’m a pretty private person.  I have a very short list of friends that I would share most things with, and to be really honest I am MUCH happier here by myself at home than I am out doing the whole “PTA” (Parent Teacher Association) fundraising or volunteering at the kids school thing.  It’s just not in my comfort zone, especially in this area where I live.  I volunteer plenty here at home by helping them do homework and being involved.  Generally speaking, I keep to myself, and while some might think I’m lonely, I am not.  Online however, I’m pretty open.  I am friendly with many different people, I’m active in many different areas (Duran and otherwise), and I’m content.  I do have my own set of boundaries though.  For example, I have tried to never use my children’s names here on the blog.  That doesn’t mean that many of you don’t know exactly who they are; it’s just that I have to be careful.  I would LOVE to share photos of my youngest because she’s super cute, show you how my son spends 90% of his time (on the computer…), or show videos of my oldest from her musicals because she is SO good. I’m extremely proud of all of them and want to share them with the world. (basically I want to brag!)  Unfortunately, that’s a part of my life that I need to keep private for their sake.  I do have them up on my Facebook page because I have lots of family on Facebook that demands that sort of thing.  (no really, they actually do demand it!)  If you’re a “Close Friend” of mine on Facebook, you can see them.  Most Duranies that I’ve never met in person are in a completely different category and list  because I don’t know them.  They can’t see everything, and that’s OK.   Those are some of my boundaries!   Another example is that I don’t talk too much about my relationship with my husband.  It’s complicated, and however “fun” that might be at times (That’s sarcasm of course), it’s a relationship that’s private.  It’s a part that I can’t share with the world if I wish to stay married.  That doesn’t mean I don’t fight the urge to tell you all about how much he drives me crazy sometimes, but it’s probably not fair to him to go telling the entire Duranieverse (yes it’s a word.  I invented it.) how he refuses to plan things in advance and waits until on the way home on Valentines Day (or my birthday, or Mothers Day and so on) to remember to buy a card, a gift, a dozen red roses….etc.

Oops.

My point is that we all have boundaries, whether it’s for safety, privacy or sanity, and for each of us, they differ.  Some are incredibly obvious.  Nick for instance, doesn’t use Twitter or Facebook.  While I’m sure it’s because he hates the idea, I think it’s also because it probably feels incredibly intrusive.  I can’t really argue with him there.  It takes getting used to, and you know, there are probably plenty of other ways he’d rather spend his time anyway.

Roger isn’t into Twitter but he uses Facebook on occasion.  Recently Roger posted a photo of himself in his hotel room when they were somewhere in Europe. (Well, I have to assume it was of him, he’d taken a photo in a mirror and the flash went off right in his face, and he called it a self-portrait.)  He posted a photo, and I was honestly surprised because he was in a bathrobe, and I was the first person who mentioned it!  I really didn’t mean for it to be a rude comment as much as I was surprised that the 40 or 50 other people before me didn’t say anything. (But I’ll bet they copied and pasted that thing so fast, and before anyone thinks otherwise, no I did not!)  Within moments after my posting the comment, the picture disappeared and in it’s place was much the same photo, this time with Roger clothed. (I am pretty sure I heard whining from all over the planet….)  I don’t know if Roger saw my post and thought twice about the picture, or if he took a good look at what he’d posted, thought about those infamous balcony photos that have circled the globe many times over by now, and retook the photo.  Regardless of the reasons those are boundaries.

John and Simon are Twitter people.  Simon uses it occasionally and posts things that sometimes I can decipher, and other times, well, I just shake my head and wonder.  The thing is, Simon tweets the way I would expect.  He also blogs as I’d expect, and when he’s in an interview and answers questions slyly, or not at all, it’s exactly how I’d expect from him.  Perhaps his reasoning behind answering things so coyly or by interacting with fans as he does, in half seriousness and half poetry, is one way to keep us all at arms length and guessing, but not coming off as though he’s completely uninterested.  John seems to have his own ideas of boundaries on Twitter.  To begin with, I think he is completely controlled how he interacts on Twitter.  He tends to use it in condensed “sessions”, and when he is ready to be finished, he’s finished.  Honestly, he’s very smart in that way.  I don’t find that he tends to only respond to certain people,  he seems to just respond to whatever tweets he sees first, and he doesn’t seem to mind answering any question he sees.  I have to give him props for that, because after about the third time I saw someone ask if he’d follow them or what type of wine he prefers, I was ready to take those Tweeters down myself.  He tends to keep himself to a firm time limit with it all though, and I have to applaud that.  I guess his “boundaries” have everything to do with how he regulates himself, not necessarily what information he sends forth.

When you really think about it, to imagine any one of them in their homes, going to their computers and “chatting” with us whether it’s by Facebook or Twitter, is relatively personal, and at times I wonder if it doesn’t feel almost too intimate of a connection for them to make with people they used to run from.  😀  Yes, there’s a big world and computer screen between us, but it’s not as though they’re in public on a concert stage.

Ultimately, I have to respect their boundaries because to be honest, I care.  I want them to feel comfortable in their space, and know that not every fan will knock them over in order to get close.  The trouble of course is that not everyone feels the same.  Many fans say, very openly I might add, that when you choose to be a celebrity, you choose a life in the public eye and that it’s their job.  While yes that is true, there is quite a bit that is being forgotten there.  To begin with, they are not “at work” 24/7, in the same way that you are not.  *I* on the other hand AM at work 24/7.  I’m a mom.  😀  (Wow I have an attitude and need a vacation!!!) Secondly, the only part of their lives that is “their job” is their music.  When they are on stage, doing photo shoots, publicity, etc; that is work.  The rest really should be their own, and so when they take time to chat, post an update, etc, I’m happy.  Respect is a two-way street, I suppose the bottom line is that if we wish to be respected, we probably need to afford them some of the same.  Boundaries are not evil.

-R

Be careful with that double edged sword!

I’m deep in the dark chasms of social media, at the moment.  The current chapter I’m working on has to do with the places we live: MySpace (Our starter homes), Facebook (what I would consider to be the single family home neighborhoods of social networking), and Twitter. (I think of these as the high rise apartment living in the city)  Funny thing: I thought writing this chapter would be easy, since I am online every day and deeply enjoying the sanctities that come along with social networking.  Well, as it turns out – its neither easy to write, nor is it easy to understand.  Perhaps that’s the real problem: I am trying to make what is/are truly a very complicated relationship(s) very simple.

To begin with, Facebook, Twitter…all of it really, IS very simple.  The UI (User Interface…and oh my god I’m starting to sound like my husband…*shivers uncontrollably*) is not difficult to follow, which is why all of us are here. (isn’t it?)  Anything that requires a manual, perhaps a tutorial, or god forbid a video series to explain…is far too much.  So, I think it’s safe to assume we’re all here because Facebook and Twitter (I’m sticking to those forms of media just because it’s what we all tend to use with regularity these days) is EASY.  The trouble comes when one starts actually using the media for which it was intended, and that is to make connections between people.  For our purposes here, I’m specifically talking about celebrities and other fans of those celebrities…and more specifically, the band members (past, present, future, backup band, etc) and us.  The Fans.  


On one hand, we’ve got the band.  People like John Taylor for instance.  I don’t think there’s any argument from anyone that he started using Twitter simply as an avenue to get the album promoted and sold.  In fact, I know he’s done interviews saying as much.  Simon was on Twitter well before John ever joined, but I don’t think he really used it much.  As we’ve heard since then, John is downright addicted to Twitter in a lot of ways, and it sounds to me as though he gets a certain amount of enjoyment (much to his surprise?) out of using Twitter.  He’s indicated that perhaps he’s getting more than just promotion out of Twitter, that maybe he’s even having fun communicating with fans to some extent.  I would imagine that this is far more than he would have expected.  Simon seems to enjoy Twitter to some extent as well.  Fans in turn probably read this to mean that the band loves talking to their fans…and thus we travel down the slippery slope to whatever fantasies we’ve got going on in our own heads, which we’ll come back to later.

In the other firm grip of the other hand, there are the fans.  You and I.  I don’t know about the rest of you, but I was on Twitter before the band. I had my own account way before Amanda and I started Daily Duranie, but I didn’t get it.  I wondered why anyone would care what I was doing during any part of my day.  It felt very voyeuristic to begin with, and so my Twitter visits were kept to a minimum.  I stuck to following the few friends I already had…which was truly bizarre since I already knew what those people were up to, and didn’t bother with much else. I just didn’t see the purpose.  I don’t read the gossip rags, I don’t watch those types of shows on TV, and to be blunt I don’t give a shit what Lindsay Lohan or Donald Trump is thinking in any given moment.  Unless one of the news stations was going to tweet that the world was ending…I just didn’t think Twitter had value.  I’d still check with Twitter from time to time when I thought of it though. (you can read this as: I would check Twitter when I’d remember – which meant every 3 months or so, and then pray I still remembered my password.)  Once we started blogging and I got the @DailyDuranie account started though, I checked it every day and started actually communicating – it was a great way to tell people when the next edition of the blog was up each day.  I liked that Twitter worked in real time, and after a while I noticed you could really have a conversation with people.  It wasn’t about just saying what I was up to – it was like a giant chat room, and that part was fun.  I would imagine that other fans had similar experiences.

Then one day, John and Simon actually started tweeting.  And answering FANS.  Suddenly Twitter wasn’t about just chatting with friends.  It was about seeing what the band was up to.  It was a lifeline while we were waiting for the new album.  John openly teased us with tour and album tidbits. (I still haven’t forgiven him for ruthlessly dropping Coachella hints before the announcement…then telling everyone that no, it wasn’t going to happen…and then disappearing right before the announcement was made.  If there was ever a good moment for spanking….Oh. Boy.)  Simon posted…well….Simon-types of tweets.  I scratched my head a lot.  It was good.

Are you wondering about that double edged sword yet?

Social Networking is complicated.  Why?  Here is the newsflash: no matter how much we want to believe otherwise – it is part of a celebrity’s JOB.   While yes, John and Simon (and Dom, although he really needs a bit of a tutorial. :D) probably enjoy tweeting and reading funny or nice things back from the fans, they are not our friends.  They have no idea who we are.  Sure, they might recognize our screen names.  They might even follow us.  (not a chance in hell when it comes to Daily Duranie and that’s OK.)  However difficult it is to understand, Twitter is not a pure unadulterated two way street of friendship between band member (celebrity) and fan.  It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to discern that interactions with fans probably equals sales of tickets, albums, etc.  Duran Duran would not be a band…or at least not a very lucrative one…without sales of some sort.   This one tiny kernel of truth – that it is at least a small part of the band’s JOB to interact, even if they enjoy it – is what makes social networking a double edged sword for both the band and the fans.

Yes, it’s very good to connect; it is also very good to establish boundaries.  It’s also very good for the fans to in turn respect those boundaries, however slippery, vague or hazy they may seem.  The trouble there is that some fans have a difficult time navigating the boundaries without crossing the line.  It’s not all that difficult for any of us (or at least it shouldn’t be) to understand how it happens.  We’ve all been there in that exciting moment when Simon is online.  He’s tweeting…you’re typing as fast as your little fingers can type so that you can hit “send”, hoping he sees your tweet and responds back, and bingo – that precious moment arrives.  You might have sent something so incredibly interesting that has absolutely nothing to do with Duran Duran (my guess is that this in turn is a very precious moment for them: when they can actually talk about something other than that blasted band of theirs…), and you get more than one reply….or even *gasp* a Direct Message.  *more gasping*  Let’s be honest here, we’ve been fans for 30 years.  We think we know these guys.  I get that.  My gosh, I KNOW that feeling.  It’s OK to admit that, you’re not anymore of a freak than I am, and so therefore we’re all in good company here.  The trouble is that connecting through Twitter and Facebook can be so much of a seduction that we forget where that line between fan and friend really lies, and it happens to everyone.  Even me.  Even you.

Saying the words that create the boundary for our relationship(s) with the band is simple.  Typing them makes it all even easier until we start getting real.  Interacting with the band online is very similar to being at a concert and being in about the 10th row.  You think you’ve caught an eye from one of them, they wink or smile and you are positive it must have been intended for you.  The reality is that that they could have smiled at your (*MY*) general direction and you’d have still thought it was for you, right?!?  Based on that, you’re sure that when you go to the show the following night, you’ll get another smile because my gosh – they’ll recognize you!  And that my friends…is my own personal story here.  I’m that girl that is insistent that the band (or a member thereof) has smiled or winked at her during a show. As if I was the only person IN the audience.  How incredibly narcissistic?!?!  Yes, I know.  It’s OK to admit it here.  Call it therapy, I do.

So as I go back to trying to write this social networking chapter, I need to admit that this is never going to be simple. I can’t completely untangle the complicated relationship we have with the band, no matter how one-sided it might actually be…

or is it?  Ah.  Another blog for another day.

-R

OK…enough quiet!!!

Last night, I finally had the opportunity to listen to some CD’s that Amanda has graciously made the two of us…that may or may not have included live performances of the concert(s) we went and saw in the UK, including Brighton.  I have to say, hearing these songs again brought back some good memories from that week spent traveling all over England and Scotland.  Yes, I’d still do it again.

When I first got home, as much as I tried to keep up with the Duran goings on, I had family schedules to contend with, and I swear the month of December went by as a blur.  I blinked and it is now over.  I guess it didn’t bother me so much when the band “signed off” for the holidays because I kind of needed a break too!  It’s tough to be a blogger sometimes!  (whine, whine, moan…wine! Yes, that kind of wine!)  So all went quiet.  Even our blog stats went way, way down. Scarily so, to be honest….but we forged on!

It’s now January 4th.  I have not heard hide, nor hair of that band for a couple weeks now – aside from a few facebook postings from the batcave, or “headquarters” as the rest of you might call it.  Oh, and one curious posting from Mr. LeBon on New Years Eve… We’re not fooled, the band is still on holiday, and I say – it’s time to get back to work!  Do you hear that whip cracking?  Of course I’m joking.  Mostly.

Fans are fickle.  We love the band to pieces because it’s what we do, but then the band goes quiet for a while, and we become uneasy.  Some move on to whatever other obsessions they have.  I actually do a lot of reading in my *laughs* spare time.  HA.  I have now read every e-book I had ready to go for my trip. (clearly didn’t do much reading in the UK…)  I’m finding myself googling each and every band members name simply to see if news pops up that I’m somehow missing elsewhere.  I have now read every single biographical essay that seems to exist for each band member, including Dom Brown.  (be afraid)  We’re bored now, and as such, we’re now in danger of chewing one another up just for the sheer sport.  Sometimes I wonder if the band sits and reads their Facebook and/or Twitter feeds for the fun of it….then I realize that only other fans could possibly find our drivel amusing.  It’s sad, but it’s reality.  I suppose I could be cleaning my house….but really what fun is there in doing that all day?? It’s a good thing that as of tomorrow all of my kids will be back in school, because I need to get out of this house, even if it is just to drive them all over the county!

Amanda and I were once called “impatient” by one of our most favorite readers.  That person was right.  I’m not really looking for new US dates (although hey if someone wants to clue me in to when those will be, I won’t turn you away!)…I’m just looking for activity.  The thrill of seeing some tweets from John Taylor, perhaps.  Some joyous postings from Roger Taylor.  How about some posts from Simon that need deciphering??  I am up for that challenge!  Yesterday while on Twitter, I came across a couple of comments that saddened me just a little and smacked me right back into reality mode.  I won’t quote, but it was intimated that perhaps the band only posts when they want to sell concert tickets.  I can’t argue that – because let’s be fair – does anyone aside from my husband go to work even when they aren’t being paid??  The band is their “job”, in the same way that my husband’s job is to sit at his desk and be on conference calls all day, go to trade shows, or fly to the Far East for meetings with clients.  The difference of course is that we’re the bands customers, and we’re far more demanding than any client my husband might have (Granted, I do not call John, Nick, Simon or Roger at 1:30am and expect them to answer their phone…then again, I don’t EVER call them….and yes, that really does happen in my house on a regular basis…).  Still, the reality can be sad (for lack of a better word) at times.  The band doesn’t necessarily chat us all up because they really want to know us.  They chat occasionally because we’re a big part of the machine that is their career.  Where you and I might very well wish to be on Twitter chatting with people, they might not.  While Facebook is how I keep in touch with my friends – Duran fans and otherwise – perhaps maybe the band doesn’t bother, and certainly not with us.  Once again I’m reminded, and fairly so, that the line between fan and friend is very defined, and I am squarely on the appropriate side of that line.

The one concern with the internet that I continuously see fans struggle over is that line.  We know the band.  We know the John Taylor that is up on the stage that he cares to share with us.  We know Simon, Nick and Roger in the same regard.  There has got to be a difference between those personas and their private lives – I just can’t see any of them surviving celebrity any other way.  I would imagine it’s a very compartmentalizing life at times.  That said, it is very, very easy to forget that fact as a fan – especially having been fans of the band for 30 years.  It is easy to assume we must know one another.  Well, we know them.  They, however, do not know us at all.  Sure, I’d love to think the band has checked out my personal Facebook, they read the blog, they read my Twitter – but none of that is true.  It’s just not reality.  I am one of a million faces they see (maybe) on tour from the stage.  With the interaction we’ve had from the band, however little it may seem at times, it’s difficult to remember that while we might be following them, they are not (for the overwhelming majority) following us.

Maybe they damn well should!   I am fascinating, aren’t you???  (that should be read with dripping sarcasm)

Time for another walk down memory lane for me…I have a few more CD’s to play!

-R