SIXTY-SECONDS BLOG: ... which is actually 60-Second Windows, or 60-Seconds.com ... Fred Showker blogs about the realms of publishing, graphics, computing, social networking, marketing, promotions, and media-- with an eye to entertaining, amazing information that will possibly make you think! Published since 1988 as syndicated articles for user group newsletters, these are vital tidbits for busy computer users that you can read in 60-seconds! Join me on DTG FACEBOOK FaceBook and follow along on DTG TWITTER Twitter. Or, you can meet up with Fred +FredShowker, @FredShowker RSS

Take Donald Trump's or Hillary Clinton's clothes off . . .

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You've talked about it all year! Now you can take action and express the moods and moves of your favorite candidate! Yes, pass the time this summer dressing and undressing Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders or Donald Trump -- or if you're a collector, get all three! Bet you've wondered how Bernie would look in some of her culottes! It's fun for kids and fun for political mavins of all ages! September 28, 2016

Creative Tidbits #214: overdue freebies and more

Fred Showker's Creative tidbits

I have a pile of freebies, and just haven't gotten around to including them -- but I'll start including some of them now. Also, an important item for web designers in this issue -- the typography thing between web sites and mobile sites is really a nightmare. Otherwise it's all fun and all good this issue so have a good time!

  • Free: Vector Florals, Avatars, Patterns, Shapes and Banners
  • Free: Fun Swirls, Doodles, Shapes, Balloons & Cakes
  • Free Stuff : Minimalist Sports Icons
  • Sally DaBronzo Free Printables
  • Typography is impossible
September 28, 2016

Publishing Update 1609 : Publishing, digital, content, print, and DTP

It's been some time since our last publishing update. Sorry! But seriously, Don't Print The Obituary For The Printing Industry Just Yet! The printing and print publishing industry has never really gone out of style, nor has it slacked off. Yes, it has changed, but the digital age has taken over -- there's a lot of graphic design, typography, photography and illustration still being printed with ink on paper! The graphic design community is still about 80% occupied by print. This is the Publishing Update of the Design & Publishing Center, so we'll consider all realms of publishing! Jump on board . . .

  • To Perfect Bind or Saddle Stitch — That is the Question
  • 3 kinds of content that are killing digital publishing
  • The Importance of Longform Content for Your Website
  • Why ‘Easy’ Publishing Solutions Hardly Ever Are
  • How digital publishers measure their influence
  • Think You'll Outsource Your Content Marketing?
  • A Script to Show Options for Placed Files
-- and more ... September 21, 2016

Creative Tidbits #213: the world's ugliest color, beyond CMYK, free photos, icons and more

Fred Showker's Creative tidbits

Here we are in the fall and you know what that means? The Typography department people are going to be working around the clock for this year's Fall Fonts Festival, and so I'm thinking I'll give'em a hand with the Creative Tidbits columns this month. . . Have fun and if YOU have a creative tidbit to report, please send it in!

  • Pantone launches new vibrant app for digital-savvy designers and colour enthusiasts
  • The World's Ugliest Color Examined By Graphic Design Experts
  • Free Stuff : Ioana Baltesiu's Stylish Icons
  • Beyond CMYK – New InfoTrends Study
  • Safe Haven for those who admire
  • Hefalo Script ~ fresh and fun!
  • Time Travel with Jenna
August 30, 2016

Marketing Update : ad strategies, food trends, direct mail, making money and more

We talk about marketing, pr and advertising and while they are closely related, they each serve a distinctive function. Both pr and advertising come under the marketing banner -- and if your marketing strategy is on point, then the other two will follow. But as Leo Burnet once said, advertising without a marketing plan is empty space. Maybe that's true, but as the world becomes more complicated, marketing is getting more and more difficult. This week's update hopes to shed some light on your marketing strategy :

  • Unblock Those Ads With These Five Compelling Advertising Strategies
  • 8 Food Marketing Trends You Need to Know About Right Now
  • How to increase customers and business via direct mail
  • Tomorrow's trends in leading edge creativity today
  • How Does Pinterest Make Money?

CAUTION Beware, all of these sites employ screen spam. Some have pop-up ad splash screens and stalker links. Be careful where you click August 22, 2016

Social Media Update : Celebrity Posts, Facebook Likes, Twitter Tactics, media failures and more

When you talk about media, of course you could be talking about TV, radio, newspapers or other traditional forms of mass communications -- but today, more and more of these conversations are built around social media. There's never been a media channel more widely available nor seductive than social media -- and this is the media we're focusing on in these Media Updates. Enjoy and get ready for September! Here are our topics this week:

  • Authorities To Crack Down On Paid Celebrity Social Media Posts
  • 6 Infallible Reasons to Take Your Business to Social Media
  • Are Facebook Likes Still Valuable in Social Media Marketing?
  • 5 Research-Backed Tactics to Get More Twitter Followers
  • Is Your Strategy Killing Your Multi-Media Efforts?
August 18, 2016

Ad Blockers : ad poison, skip button, pernicious Facebook, Adblock, WSJ, reader blocking

Isn't it funny that our profession is built so heavily on advertising yet I've become such a staunch advocate against it. There's a point at which advertising has become divisive and sinister. The advertising industry in their unquenchable thirst for revenue has given the store away and are making too much money to ever become honorable again.
      Advertising is a form of communication between two entities. When one side of the conversation becomes deceptive and fallacious, then it's time to end the conversation and part company. The problem is, the industry has become so good at hiding their malicious intent, few web surfers are aware of the dangers. As graphic designers, we take pride in the visual storytelling and persuasion on behalf of our clients -- but graphic design has very, very little to do with advertising on the web. Join me in the fight against malicious advertising ... hooray for ad blockers! August 16, 2016

Advertising Update : Native ads, Programatic ads, mobile woes, SERPS and more

The school start season is behind us, and soon we'll be rushing into the holiday buy season and most market / advertising plans are about to burst into full steam -- if they haven't already. Ad blockers have taught the rude ad hucksters a few lessons, so now everyone's talking native ads. Funny how things cycle around -- we're advocated native advertising from the very beginning! If it wasn't so miserable, it would be funny. Enjoy this week's advertising / marketing update . . .

  • Stand Out by Blending In: Making Native Advertising Work on Mobile
  • Small agencies have yet to embrace programmatic advertising
  • Top 4 Tips For Combining Native and Programmatic
  • All Hail the Rise of Native Advertising
  • Paid Advertising Dominates Local SERPs
August 15, 2016

Social Media Update : Fast Food, Medical Media, target children, the wild, wild west and more

The summer is almost over, and most areas have already begun concentrating on back to school, and maybe even the holidays! But social media like LinkedIN, Facebook, Tumblr and others are hooked on the U.S. Elections with a cesspool of vile interactions. We'll be fortunate when all that is over, so that's why I am avoiding it. I figure you're seeing enough of that garbage, the Design Center doesn't have to add more . . . please have a great time this week:

  • Yes, There Is a Place for Social Media Marketing in Your Medical Practice
  • Fast food companies use social networking sites to target children
  • Yes, Serious Academics Should Absolutely Use Social Media
  • How to Monitor Social Media in 20 Minutes Per Day
  • Social media's 'wild west'
August 11, 2016

60-Seconds #336 : You Are Annoying Your Customers? Do you know why?

Gavin Jocious has written an article that really struck a note with me. I remember back in 2004, O'Reilly Media came out with a series of books about things that annoy people about technology. They invited people to send in their annoyances for the next book. They had so many coming in they published a whole series of books. But in Gavin's article "You Are Annoying Your Customers... " he asks "Do you know why? August 10, 2016