Tuesday, October 6, 2009


At Bizdom U we have an expression called "Gumping". The term comes from the novel Forest Gump by Winston Groom--which, of course was adapted into the Academy Award winning movie. Forest Gump lived his life simply and truthully. "Gumping" is about making something so straight forward that even someone who is border-line mentally ill can understand it. It's about making life easy.

Here's an example of "Gumping" that applies to me. I have a Myspace account that I rarely look at any more. I moved to Facebook about a year ago and it's become my social networking preference. Why? The number of "clicks" it took for me to get information I could use from Myspace was ridiculous. While it's much improved these days, it's still too much work--for too many friends--that aren't-really-friends--for the limited amount of free time I have.

For example, if someone sends me a direct message in Myspace, I receive an email that only tells me who sent me a message--NOT the message. I then have to log into Myspace, click-click-click and then FINALLY I read some message that means nothing to me. In contrast, on Facebook I can read direct messages right in my Yahoo! email account. I can then decide if I want, or need, to open up Facebook and respond (or not). It's a simple thing. A little thing. But it makes using Facebook so much more enjoyable and easier for me.

Another "Gumping" example is how Facebook always looks the same every time you open it and it opens FAST! Myspace on the other hand allows users to "PIMP" their pages and "PIMP" they do. Some people put so much trash on their Myspace pages it takes ten minutes to open up. I don't necessarily want to hear your crappy band's music every time I look you up. That's why I punish you by making you listen to "Hot Rod Your Home" if you look at my page.

In the end, the neat and clean Facebook has won over users that would never dream of using Myspace—like the baby boomer generation. We like it. It doesn't offend us. There's no pimping. It's simple. We get it. We have control. Why? Because it's gumped.