Category: Work

a short bio for a conference…

Amber Nettles is a Facebook enthusiast and overall social media geek who works with radio stations and their clients in order to maximize their efforts on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Instagram and blogs. Prior to working in radio and digital advertising, she was employed for a Chicago Tribune-owned newspaper for six years. Starting out as a copyeditor and page designer, she later managed mobile and social media training and operating protocol for the editorial staff. She’s worked with small, medium and big businesses, as well as editorial staff in news and radio. When she’s not working, she collects vintage typewriters, chases her unruly pets, crochets scarves and tries to catch as many live music shows as possible at outside venues in her hometown in southeast Virginia.

Nablopomo Day 29: Crazycakes

What i wrote today, to my coworkers, who hopefully understand that i am just occasionally flat-out crazycakes and strange and weirdly nitpicky:

Random for the day, and very, very few people know this; Over and under really should apply to spatial reasoning only – numbers don’t have real “height,” they have value instead. 61 is not over 30, for example, because they don’t actually exist in any realm of space.

And this is so random but yeah, it’s something that only sticklers pick up on. And we don’t absolutely have to change it from the colloquial use, but … I’m randomly crazy about it.

Same reasoning that numbers don’t actually “rise” or “fall,” they increase or decrease.

Thus endeth my crazycakes commentary for the day.

Haters gonna hate … Why your fans like to talk $*&^ on Facebook



Have you seen this meme? 

Haters gonna hate.

The reason this image turned into a meme* is simple: Haters ARE gonna hate. If you’re doing well, someone is going to try to cut you down. If you make a mistake, the loonybin gets an early release and the inmates all descend on you.
Your Facebook is a top target for the haters. Your first instinct might be to delete complaints posted on your wall, or ban users altogether. Here’s some advice about that: 

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Edgerank: Why Facebook says you suck

My first official blog post at entercomsocial:

photo from thenewxtweb

Photo via thenextweb

You know what sucks? When you spend time, energy and your super-awesome brain power to create a post for Facebook, but only 15% of your Facebook fans see the post. Bummer, right?

So what went wrong? Your post is the ultimate post, and the subject matter is engaging and laugh-out-loud funny. Your Edgerank is low, and Facebook is straight-up saying “Yeah, no one wants to see this post. Where’s the post about kittens hugging stuffed animals? That was good s**t.”*

Whether you are working a station, perks, client or personal page, this applies to you. Click the jump to learn how to win friends and influence people, or just increase the likelihood fans are going to see your posts (If you don’t click the jump, those kittens will die. Just sayin’).

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How you should use QR codes: A manifesto

(Usually, I’d write this up for Press Forward. I may cross post later, I just feel like banging this out real quick. And possibly being insulting. Disclaimer: This is my personal blog. Any and all opinions here do not reflect the opinions of my employer. Also, sometimes I get cranky.)

Android QR code

A QR code should point to something the end user needs to access via their phone.

The publication medium is as important as the target. This comes into play in a moment, I promise. 

Read after the jump if you want to see me call someone an idiot.

If your end user is seeing the code via their computer, a QR code to an app is great. Read the review of the app, then pull out your phone, scan the code and download. AWESOME.

If you’re on a computer, a QR code to another website is pointless. Why not just give your end user the link? You’re asking your end user to take an extra step where none is needed. That’s silly. 

Think about your end user. 

And don’t get me started on idiots who post QR codes on mobile sites. Seriously, guys? How is the user supposed to use it? Borrow another phone to scan the QR code off the screen? 

Examples of QR codes:


QR code to an app in an ad for Macy’s. Code points to the (mobile friendly) product page. 

QR code on Facebook pointing to an app. (Only useful if the user is reading Facebook from their computer)

QR code in newspaper pointing to a YouTube video or photo gallery 

QR code on a business card pointing to a mobile-friendly resume or website

QR code on a poster at a bar/venue pointing to a mobile-friendly list of upcoming shows

QR code on a flyer/poster pointing to a coupon or promotion code 


QR code posted to Twitter. Really guys? Computer users just need the link, and mobile readers can’t scan it FROM THEIR SCREEN. Silly, silly.

QR code pointing to another website posted on a website. Period. Your homepage, your Facebook, etc. If you want to have a “graphic element,” get a logo. QR codes do not make you look cool. Your end-user is going to be all “WTF?” if you post a code with no explanation, they take the time to pull out their phone and scan the code, and it takes them to a web site they could have easily accessed ON THEIR COMPUTER. 

Not rocket science. I promise. 

Here’s the QR codes to our apps. These will work if you’re reading from your computer. If you’re reading on a mobile device, click the links and download our app. (SEE HOW EASY THAT IS??)

Daily Press for Android (Click the link!)

Android QR code

Daily Press for iPhone (Click the link!)

Daily Press for iPhone

just wrote this to a colleague

She wrote:

Would it be “If only college was this hard” or “If only college were this hard.”

OK, this is hard. I BELIEVE it’s “were,” considering you’re speaking in what’s called a ‘past subjunctive mood,’ (past tense possibility, basically). In past subjunctive, singular nouns use a past plural verb (past plural of “to be” is were)


Was: past  “College was hard.”

Were: past plural. “Colleges were hard.”

“ It is called the past subjunctive when referring counterfactually to the present, and is called the pluperfect subjunctive when referring counterfactually to the past. It occurs in that clauses following the main-clause verb “wish” (“I wish that she were here now”; I wish that she had been here yesterday”) and in if clauses expressing a condition that does not or did not hold (“If she were here right now, …”; “If she had been here yesterday, …”).

Um, was I right on this?

I write when I’m flying. In planes. You know what I mean.

(I went here)

 My hair was BORN for a non-humid climate. Seriously, I think if my hair could make the decision, it would be all like “Bitch, please. We’re staying here til I’m grey and falling out. For real.”

Specialist < analyst < strategist, in the grand scheme of things. Recognize.

Shanahan used to own the Broncos and now he owns the Redskins. I don’t know if I care about that, but I do know he has an awesome steak and some kick-ass truffle mac’n’cheese.

I managed to make my mom cry. I know,  I know. She was all freaking out about me traveling by myself, right? And I’m like, “Dude. I went to Seattle by myself when I was 22 and it was the first time I ever flew, and you didn’t bat an eye.” I think her husband was worried about me (bless his heart) and that made HER worried and they just worked each other up so much that it ended up escalating to the point that she burst into tears. She definitely pulled the whole “I can’t believe you’re surprised that I care. OF COURSE I care.”  This was on the phone about thirty minutes after I got to my hotel, mind you. So I had to calm her down and THAT turned into a discussion of the things that are broken in our respective homes; her sink is leaking and my fence fell down. That distracted her enough, I think.

Denver is GREEN. They just had a bunch of storms, so everything was lush and pretty. I really wanted to take of my shoes and walk barefoot in the grass, but I didn’t want anyone to think I was that crazy girl from Virginia.

As I’m writing this, I’m also listening to “Jane Eyre.” I wonder how the in-flight movies are chosen? Because seriously, I can’t imagine this is high on the list for this particular demographic. Strangely enough, I was just talking about the book yesterday, when I explained why I ended my short-lived English major and switched to Political Science; you can only deconstruct “Jane Eyre” so many times before the analysis overshadows the work itself. I believe in enjoying literature, not picking it apart until it’s meaningless and reduced to representative hyperbole.

I accidentally took someone’s seat. He’s now in 39D and I’m in 39C. I wonder if I changed some small course in the universe. We’re across the aisle from each other right now and I wonder if I’m supposed to be sitting there. Maybe the young man in 39E (who’s reading what looks like the memoir of a chef) would have been reading my computer screen at this exact moment (in this now-alternate universe) and would have asked me what I meant by “representative hyperbole,” and I would have had to tell him I wasn’t quite sure – I can’t think of the right phrase right now. It would have turned into some pseudo meet-cute, in which we develop an absolute distaste for each other after we argue the merits of analyzing literature and feminist theory. We then would have been stuck in D.C. overnight and would keep running into each other over and over until, exhausted and at our wits’ end, we finally end up at the airport bar. After drowning our sorrows, bemoaning our fates and finally admitting we find each other attractive, we end up in a hotel room together.

This is the “Jane Eyre” with Mia Wasikowski, who’s supposed to be “a revelation,” according to the reviews I read. Wow, I really forgot how awful the boarding school/orphanage/whatever is.

Oh hey, the chick that played Henry’s super-young bride in the Tudors is totally in this.

(Two hours later) HOLY DAMN I forgot how hot Rochester is. Wasikowski did a good job (I wouldn’t call her “a revelation,” but she was a’ight). But whew, Rochester is a hot chunk o’Victorian man.

*EDIT*  How did I somehow foreshadow the ridiculous delays that were about to happen? I didn’t get in to Norfolk until 2:30 a.m. Ugh.

This isn’t REALLY goodbye… (my last e-mail)

Hello all,


I’m going to excerpt a bit from what I wrote last week on my personal blog, so bear with me;

My grandparents and parents read the Daily Press every day when I was growing up. When I was about 10, I wrote to Tony Gabriele to tell him I read his column every week and I wanted to be a writer just like him. I think one of the proudest moments of my grandfather’s life was when I told him the Daily Press had hired me as a full-time copyeditor. He was so excited he called every New Jersey aunt, uncle and cousin, and told them exactly how much I was going to be paid at “THE PAPER.” Seriously. He hadn’t been working in 20 years, so my hiring salary made him think I was a much bigger deal than I really was.

I started here as a copyeditor (intern) in 2006. I knew NOTHING. It was embarrassing, actually. Luckily, I read fast and there were great people on the desk willing to teach me. Later I bounced around doing one thing after the next: page layout, local front and A1, inside sports, community news, features and even some writing. I’ve had the opportunity to do really fun things, like prom projects, national novel writing month, two poetry contests, blogs and, obviously, mobile and social media.


It has been an honor and a privilege to work with so many kind, talented and hard-working people. I actually have no idea what my life is going to be if I’m not coming here every weekday, and it’s terrifying. Thank you so much for teaching me and guiding me, and allowing me to make mistakes (and boy, there have been mistakes). I’m really, really thankful I was allowed to be here.


I said this last week, and I’ll say it again:

I’m not nearly as talented as anyone in this newsroom. I’m not the best writer, designer, editor or manager. I don’t know how or why I’ve been lucky enough to be allowed to stay so long. There have been a few times I expected someone to say “What are you doing here? You don’t belong here!”


You guys are doing great work, and you’re providing an invaluable service to the community. Even if you get tired or discouraged, you still get the news out. I admire that, and I’m going to miss being part of something so important.


This isn’t REALLY goodbye. I’m available online, obviously, and I’ll also expect to see many of you in downtown Hampton, or at Nawab, Jason’s Deli or Anna’s. I’ll be available for lunch (and dinner! And drinks!) very often, so drop me a line:


My goodbye

It is with mixed emotions I announce I am leaving the Daily Press. I have accepted a position with Entercom Communications, which owns radio stations across the United States. Entercom owns 94.9, z104, 101.3 and 95.7 in Hampton Roads.

This is a brand-new position created by Entercom. I’ll be one of three social media specialists the company is hiring. I don’t know which  locations are included in my “branch,” but I do know I’ll be traveling often. I am so, so excited about this opportunity, but am also terrified of the change I’m making.

This is in no way a reflection on the Daily Press or the Chicago Tribune. I have been remarkably fortunate during my time here.  I can’t begin to express how difficult this decision was for me, or how I feel each time someone says “Congratulations!”

I started as an intern at the Daily Press in 2005.  Originally, I was lucky to be a fast reader, and later I was lucky to be an efficient multi-tasker. After that, I was just geeky enough to first work with social media, and then with mobile. I’ve apparently had good timing, but I’ve had even better colleagues and supervisors who encouraged and guided me.

During the past six years I have had the privilege of interacting with some of the smartest, most talented and hard-working people I’ll ever meet. It has been a privilege that I probably don’t deserve.

My big secret is this: I’m not nearly as talented as the majority of the people in that building. Most of the time, I have decent intuition when it comes to branding and technology. But I could never write, photograph, design, edit or manage nearly as well as the other people in the room.

I grew up reading the Daily Press. My parents and grandparents read the Daily Press. When I was a child, I wrote to Tony Gabriele, telling him I read his humor column every week and I wanted to be a writer just like him. I think one of the proudest moments of my grandfather’s life was when I told him the Daily Press had hired me as a full-time copyeditor. He was so excited he called every New Jersey aunt, uncle and cousin, and proceeded to tell them exactly how much I was going to be paid. Seriously. He hadn’t been working in 20 years so my hiring salary made him think I was a much bigger deal than I really was.

I’ve been on the edge of tears the past two days because I can’t imagine not coming into the newsroom every weekday. So if you’re reading this, guys, ignore me if you see my face getting red while I’m typing at my desk.

The good thing about all of this? I’ll still be around. I’m available by phone, e-mail, Twitter, Facebook and carrier pigeon. I’m also a big fan of food (and beer, let’s not lie) and I’ll be coming out to lunch and dinner with my favorite people for, I expect, years to come.

Thanks for having me, everyone.