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Incredible IncrediMail Email

IncrediMail is an email program you can download and use on your computer. The thing that's different with IncrediMail is that IncrediMail lets you create and sent beautiful, colourful emails. Some of the things that IncrediMail include are:

  • backgrounds you can use in your emails
  • emoticons (smileys) you can add to your emails
  • 3D effects
  • animated graphics
  • sounds and sound effects
  • animated email notifiers
IncrediMail


IncrediMail notifier

Email has never been more fun then when you send your emails with IncrediMail. The first thing you should do when you start up IncrediMail for the first time is to select your IncrediMail notifier. This is the thing that will tell you that you have mail when new email comes in for you. These are really cute and talk to you to tell you that you have a new email. There are many IncrediMail notifiers to choose from. Here are just a few examples:
  • a duck that waddles up and quacks at you (my son got a kick out of this one)
  • a puppy that barks at you
  • a butler that says "You have mail madam" (probably says "sir" if you are a man
  • a cursor that spells out "message waiting"
  • a big happy face that says "you have an email"
  • a mail box that says "new mail arrived" while it opens up and puts a letter inside
  • random so you get a different notifier each time

The notifier can have the sound turned off if you prefer. You can also choose to have it show up on top of all your other screens or in the background. There are many more IncrediMail notifiers to choose from too. If you don't like any of the ones in the program, you can download more online.

Sending a New IncrediMail Message

When you are ready to send a new message just click on the icon that says "New Mail". When the message box pops up you will notice a style box open up along side it. The style box is where you find all the cool things you are going to use to make your new emails look the way you want them to. Some of the things you will find on your IncrediMail style box are:
  • backgrounds (so many to choose from, how do I choose)
  • animations (cute little characters and other things you can add to your emails)
  • sounds (make your emails make sounds, say things or play songs)
  • e-cards (send a Happy Birthday or other type of card right in your IncrediMail emails)
Writing Your New Email

Start typing your new email, but first check out a few of the other things you can do with IncrediMail:

  • change fonts - This means that you can change the way your letters look. Try it out and see what I mean.
  • font size and color - Make your words bigger or smaller if you want to and change the colors too.
  • emoticons - These are those cute little smiley faces you see lurking around chat boards and forums. You can add them to your emails now. No matter what you're feeling you will find an emoticon to match.
  • insert picture - You can put a picture right in your email. It doesn't get inserted just as an attachment either, but is instead embedded in your email.
  • recorder - Record a voice message instead of typing. This is great for sending messages to small children or people who can's see or read email.

Just Another Email Program

IncrediMail is more than just another email program. With all these cool features you'll feel like a high tech Web designer. Sending cool graphical email is simple using IncrediMail.

IncrediMail still offers all the normal things that email programs have traditionally offered too. You can still send attachments, add a signature and keep an address book. If you like using a desktop email program, and you want to add graphics to your emails, then IncrediMail is definitely the email program for you.  

Rojo : Feeds Social Networking

With the advent of Web 2.0, websites have sprung to a new level. The look and feel along with the types of functions a website could perform is exceeding our expectations everyday. Webpages that started as a static page with text and images is turning into a multi-million dollar industry which could perform functions that were done using softwares on specific platforms. The advancement is plenty and a lot of us might feel that it is hard to keep with with the new technologies revealing everyday.

feeds social networking

Rojo.com is a website that has been impressive. It uses the state of the art technology to gather feeds and along with it provide social networking. So, you don't have to venture to a different website like shoutwire to find the latest news. It is a great place to meet other people who are like minded.

There are many websites than required to grab the feeds onto one place. Some examples are bloglines, google reader, feed lounge, yahoo etc. All these websites use Web 2.0. They differ on performance and the number of features they offer. I find Rojo rich in features and performance being excellent as well. Rojo uses tags to segregate the feeds which is much effective and superior than categories. Tags are an easy way to find the feed that we are looking in case we have hundreds of feeds.

The scene of Rojo as a social networking website is still in the beginning stages. It is yet to gain popularity and it would strictly be a matter of time before Rojo displaces websites like netscape and digg off the block.

Earn Cash From Your Site

Yes, it's true. You can make money from your Web site. How much depends on how big your site is, how your site is organized and most importantly, what your site's about. Some subjects just make more money than others. It's true.

earn cash

There are a couple different ways you can make money from your Web site. The obvious way being that you sell something that people will buy. But that's not what this is about. I'm not talking about selling items that you have to supply and ship. This is much simpler.

The first step is signing up for an affiliate program and the next step is adding affiliate ads to your Web pages. That's pretty much it. Strategically placing your ads is important too.1

Here are a few of the affiliate programs that you can sign up with to help you make money:
  • Google Adsense - You may or may not be admitted into this program. Google has a lot of rules about who can and can't use their program. If you do get in remember, never click on your own ads. This is a pay per click program and if you get caught clicking on your own ads, and you will, you will be dropped from the program fast.  
  • These ads are mostly text ads but are very eye catching and are self ading. By this I mean that you place the code on your page for an ad and Google figures out which ads to put on which pages for you. This is really easy and is a big money maker for a lot of people
  • Amazon.com - This program is a pay per sale program. You place a link to a specific product on your Web page. If someone clicks through to Amazon.com and buys something you make money. A lot of people buy from Amazon so if you place the right ads on the right pages you just may make money from this.
  • Commission Junction - Use with caution. This is probably one of the biggest affiliat programs on the Net. Because of this there are some rules you need to know. If you don't make money in six months they will charge you a fee and close your account. I'm not sure of the exact rule but I had this happen to me once. This is a pay per sale program and they have a lot of companies to choose from.
  • LinkShare - This is also a pay per sale program. They have a lot of companies you can choose to use. Place ads to companies that are similar to your site and don't choose too many. It's tempting to choose a lot of different companies to place ads to but don't do it. Using the same ads on many different page is actually better for getting your readers to click on them.
  • Affiliate Fuel - Some of these ads are pay per sale and some are pay per lead. The companies advertising here are different than the kinds of companies and ads you will find on other affiliate programs.
  • BeFree - Very similar in structure to LinkShare and Commission Junction. This is a pay per sale program.

Getting Web Site Traffic

website traffic
Getting people to visit your Web site can often be a difficult task, especially if your Web site is small. There are several main things you need to consider, and things you need to do, if you are hoping to get some traffic to your Web site. These are not the only things you can do to get traffic to your Web site, but they are a good start.
  • Keywords - Every page needs a keyword or keyword phrase. It's best to choose that keyword or keyword phrase before you start writing the page. Decide what your page is going to be about and write the page around that keyword or keyword phrase. If your page is going to be about cat collars, then make sure you use the phrase "cat collars" several times while writing the page, especially in the first couple paragraphs.
  • Title & Meta Tags - When considering a title for your page make sure to use the keyword or key phrase of your page in the title. If you are using HTML, then you need to be concerned with meta tags. Make sure to use your keywords in the meta description several times, and the title tags at the top of your HTML at least twice, and put the keyword in the meta keyword area too. Meta tags for a page that is about cat collars would look something like this:

    <title>Cat Collars - Cat Collars for your Precious Kitty</title>

    <head>

    <meta name="keywords" content="cat collars, collars, cats">

    <meta name="description" content="Cat collars for your cat. Your cat will really love these cat collars. My cat tried these cat collars and really loved them.">

    </head>
  • Good Content - If your page is about something important, is written well, and includes the right keywords it will probably do well in the search engines. On top of search engines, other sites will also link to your page if it is well written.
  • Search Engines - Submit your pages to the most popular search engines. Go to each of the search engines and submit your pages to them individually.
  • Similar Web Sites - Find Web sites that are similar to yours and offer to link to their site in exchange for a link back to your site. If they have a page for links they will probably do it.
  • Forums & Message Boards - Go to forums and message boards that are about your site and answer questions or offer advice or even ask questions. Create a signature under your name for your message posts that links back to your site. If people like what you wrote on the forum, they may click on your link and visit your site.
  • Update Regularly - If you don't add content to your site, then why should someone keep coming back. Update your site regularly with new content and watch your traffic grow.

Add Newsgroups Outlook Express

When you sign up for an email address with your local ISP (internet service provider) you usually also get access to newsgroups. Many of you may have access to newsgroups and not even know it. Some of you may know you have newsgroups but not know how to use them. Set up your newsgroups with Outlook Express and find some that interest you. Then you can join in discussions about your favorite topics and even give advice or ask questions of your own.



Set Up Newsgroups With Outlook Express

  1. Open Outlook Express.
  2. In the menu at the top of Outlook Express click on "Tools". Then scroll down to "Accounts" and click on that also.
  3. A box will pop up. On the right side of the box you will see a button that says "Add", click on it. A short menu will pop up when you click on it. From this menu click on "News".
  4. Another box will pop up. In this box you will see that it wants you to enter your name. You don't have to use your real name if you don't want to. Enter the name you want people to know you by in the newsgroups. Then click "Next".
  5. The next window will want you to enter your email address. If you want people to be able to reply to you by email from the newsgroups then enter your email address here. If you don't want people in the newsgroups to know your email address then enter something else here. Then click "Next".
  6. In the next window enter the newsgroup address that your internet service provider gave to you so that you can access the newsgroups. It will probably look something like news.isp.com. If you don't know what this is then look through the paperwork your ISP gave you when you signed up. It's probably listed next to or with the information you needed to use to set up your email. If you still can't find it you will need to call your ISP and ask them for it.
  7. Click the button that says "My news server requires me to log on". After you enter your news server information click "Next".
  8. Now you will need your username and password. You should have also received these from your ISP. They are most likely the same username and password you use to get your email. Enter your username and password in their respective places. If you want your computer to always remember your username and password click the button that says "Remember Password". Then click on "Next".
  9. At the next window click "Finished".
  10. When that pop up window goes away you will be brought back to the original pop up window. Click "Close" on this window.

Add Newsgroups To Your Account

  1. After you have finished setting up your Outlook Express newsgroup account you will be asked if you want to add newsgroups. Click "Yes". If you don't see this box pop up then click on the name of your newsgroups in the left hand column. If the box still doesn't pop up then click on the button at the top of the screen that says "Newsgroups".
  2. You may be asked to verify your username and password or it may just log in for you. Log in if you need to.
  3. All the newsgroups available will start to download. This may take awhile depending on your connection speed.
  4. When the newsgroups are finished downloading you can start searching for newsgroups that you want to join. Lets say you are a cat lover and want to join a newsgroup about cats. Type in the word cats. Look through the newsgroups about cats and see if there are any you want to join, you can always unsubscribe from newsgroups later if you don't like them.
  5. When you find a newsgroup you want to join click on the name of the newsgroup and then click on the button that says "Subscribe".
  6. Search for and subscribe to more newsgroups.
  7. When you are finished subscribing to newsgroups click the "OK" button at the bottom of the window.
  8. All your newsgroups will now be showing in the left hand column.

Add News To Your Newsgroups

  1. Click on the newsgroup you want to read first.
  2. News for that newsgroup will now download.
  3. When all the news is finished downloading just click on the title you want to read and you can read it in the right hand column.

Unsubscribe From Newsgroups

  1. Click on the button at the top of the screen that says "Newsgroups".
  2. There are three tabs in this window. Click on the one that says "Subscribed". This will show you all the newsgroups you are subscribed to.
  3. Click on the title of the newsgroup you want to unsubscribe from.
  4. Click on the "Unsubscribe" button.
  5. When you are finished unsubscribing you can click on the "OK" button.
  6. The newsgroups you unsubscribed from will be gone from your left column now. 

PayPal.com Buy and Sell Online

PayPal.com is one of the main ways people pay for Ebay items and items bought at other online retailers. If you sell something from your own Web site you can even use PayPal to let your customers buy your items. By using PayPal to accept orders from your Web site you also have the ability to accept credit cards. By paying with PayPal you also have the ability to pay with a PayPal credit card.

paypal logo


Let's say you want to buy something from Ebay or another site that uses PayPal. You browse for the item you want and buy it. When you go to pay you plug in your PayPal username and password and follow the directions to pay for your item. If you have enough money in your PayPal account to pay for the item in full then the money will move from your PayPal account to the account of the person doing the selling. If you don't have enough in your PayPal account to pay for the item then PayPal will use whatever money is in your PayPal account and then take the rest from the alternate account you tell PayPal to take the money from, be it your checking account or a credit card.

You set up alternate accounts with PayPal ahead of time so you can do this quickly when buying something. Setting up an alternate account is easy too. Go to PayPal and enter the bank account number of your checking account of the number on your credit card. There is a verification process to make sure no one uses an account that doesn't belong to them. When you are finished with the verification process you are ready to go buying online.

If you buy from Web site's that don't take PayPal you can use the PayPal debit card. PayPal offers a debit card for free. Sign up for this debit card and you can use your PayPal account to purchase anything anywhere that takes credit cards. Best of all, when you make a purchase with this PayPal debit card PayPal pays you. You receive cash back every time you make a purchase. It may only be a few cents or it could be a few dollars but it all ads up.

PayPal also pays interest on the money you keep in your PayPal account. Every month you will earn interest for the money you keep in this account. Use your PayPal account as a savings account if you want to. Or, since you have the PayPal debit card you can use your PayPal account as a vacation or holiday fund. Let it earn interest all year and have more to spend when you're ready to use it.

OutlookExpress Signature

Adding a signature to your emails says something about who you are. Whenever someone receives and email from you they will look at the signature to see who the email is from. They will notice if you have more there than just your name. 

outlook

If you have a Web site, and you don't mind sharing it with other people, link to it in your signature. If you have a favorite short poem or catchy phrase that you like, add it. This is how it's done.


  1. Open Outlook Express.
  2. Click on "Tools" in the menu at the top of the page and then on "Options".
  3. Click on the "Signatures" tab in the box that pops up.
  4. Click on the button that says "New".
  5. Type your signature into the "Text" box. You can put your name, your Web page address, your email address, a favorite poem or saying, something else, or all if these things.
  6. Click on the "Rename" button and give your signature a name. This can be anything you want, like "Linda's Signature".
  7. At the top of the window is a checkbox that says "Add signature to outgoing emails". If you want your signature on all your emails, click this. If you want to choose which emails you want your signature on, don't click this. If you do click this you will also have the option to choose if you want your signature on emails you reply to or forward to other people.
  8. If you have more than one email address on Outlook Express click on the "Advanced" button. Choose which emails you want to use this signature with.
  9. Click "OK" and you're finished. Now when you click on "Create Mail" at the top of Outlook Express you will see your signature show up. You can then add your message to your email and send emails with your signature on them.

Set Up Gmail Notifier

Gmail notifier will let you know when you have email on your Gmail account. When ever you get a new email to your Gmail account Gmail notifier will give you a small little pop up on your computer down in the bottom right hand corner so it doesn't interrupt your work or what you're doing. The pop up tells you who sent the email and also gives you a little preview of the email itself.

gmail


When the Gmail notifier pops up you can see what the email is so you can decide whether it's important enough to read now or not. If it is you can click on Gmail notifier and you will be taken to the email you want to read.

You can't delete emails from Gmail notifier but you can go to your Gmail and delete them from there. With Gmail notifier you can also set Gmail as your default email program so when you click on email links in a Web page a Gmail window will pop up for you to send mail with.

Setting Up Gmail Notifier

First thing you need to do if you want to set up Gmail notifier is to sign up for a Gmail email account. Once you have a Gmail email account you can move on to this lesson. Open Gmail in your browser and we can get started.
  1. From your Gmail page click on the link at the top of the page that says "Settings".
  2. Scroll down the page until you see "Get the Gmail Notifier" and click on it.
  3. A new window will pop up or a new tab will open with the download information. Choose either Windows or Mac depending on what operating system you are using. Then click the button that says "Download Gmail Notifier".
  4. Choose "Save To Disk" and click "OK". If you are given a choice where to save the program then save it to your desktop so you can find it easier.
  5. Find the icon on your desktop that says "GmailInstaller". Double click on the icon to start downloading.
  6. Read the license agreement. Click "I agree".
  7. Choose "Standard" install and then decide if you want Gmail notifier to run on startup and also if you want to use Gmail notifier for outgoing email. Then click "Next".
  8. The next screen asks where to download Gmail notifier to. Leave this alone unless you really want to download it to a particular place. Click "Next".
  9. On the next window click "Install".
  10. When it Gmail notifier is finished installing click the "Close" button.
  11. You will now see a little envelope in the bottom right hand corner of your page. Gmail notifier is now installed and running.

Google Emoticons

google emoticons

An emoticon is a smiley face that you can make using the keys on your keyboard. They don't all smile and they're not all faces but they are cute and they add emotion and character to your messages and email. People on the Internet use them in emails, on message board and in chat rooms.

Google Gmail lets you use certain emoticons in your emails. They don't have emoticons added to their "Rich Formatting" yet but they still let you use emoticons in your email. As long as you know how to create the emoticons, and you are sending the email to someone who has an email program that lets them see emoticons, they will look great.

When you type these emoticons into Gmail and mail the email the emoticons will not just look like keyboard characters, they will take on a much better look. Try them out and see how they look in Gmail. Here are the emoticons you can use in Gmail:

< 3 This one looks like a heart. Turn your head to the right and use your imagination. It'll look better in Gmail.
: ( | ) It's a monkey. This one takes a little more imagination, even when used in Gmail.
\ m / Rock out. OK, I don't get it.
*The rest of these are faces:
: - o
: D
: (
X - (
B - )
: ' (
= D
; )
: - |
= )
: - D
; ^ )
; - )
: - )
: - /: P

Torrents: Free Downloads

torrents

Download music, pictures, videos and games for free. Do this at your own risk though. Some songs and other things may have a copyright, and that means you can't download or allow people to download them from you for free. You can find movies, music, software, games, pictures and more. Some are of an adult nature, but there's stuff for kids too if you look for it.

  • FileList.org
  • FileMP3.org
  • The Pirate Bay
  • Seedler.org
  • TorrentReactor.to
  • Torrent Portal
  • Torrents
  • Torrentz
  • Yotoshi Bittorrent Search Engine

Use Yahoo! Mail to Get Email

Yahoo! Mail has been around a very long time. The main difference between Yahoo! Mail and many of the other online email programs is that you are able to retrieve email from other email addresses using it on top of your Yahoo! Mail email.

yahoo

This is what I mean; When you sign up for your Internet connection with your local Internet service provider (ISP) you often get some email addresses to go along with it. Using Outlook Express or another desktop type email program you can't get your email when you are on vacation or at a friends house. Using Yahoo! Mail you can. Sign up for Yahoo! Mail and enter the email information from your ISP. Then you can retrieve your email from any computer with an Internet connection just by going to Yahoo! Mail and signing in.

Setting Up ISP Email With Yahoo! Mail

  1. Sign up for and sign into Yahoo! Mail.
  2. Click "Options" listed at the top, right hand side of the page.
  3. Click the link that says "Mail Addresses".
  4. Click the "Add" button to start adding your email address to Yahoo! Mail.
  5. Name your account. This is whatever you want to call it. Call it "My email" if you want to. Then click "Continue listed at the bottom of the bottom of the page.
  6. In the box where it asks for "Mail Server" put the server name your ISP gave to you. It will look something like mail.server.com or pop3.server.com .
  7. In the box labeled "Username" put the username you use to get your email from your ISP. This may have been something you chose or it could have been given to you.
  8. Next put in your password. This was given to you at the same time as your username by your ISP. It's usually something personal that you chose yourself.
  9. If you want emails received from this email address to show up in Yahoo! Mail in a different color then choose the color here. Then click the button that says "Setup Mail Server".

Edit Yahoo! Mail Options

  1. When you get back to the page that has all your email addressees accounts listed click on the name of the one you want to edit. Click the "Edit" button. Editing the email address may be very important.
  2. Look down to the "Deliver To" box. You can put your emails from this email address in another folder other than the Inbox if you want to.
  3. See where it says "Leave mail on POP server". This means that if you want to read your emails on Yahoo! Mail but you still want to be able to retrieve them on your other email program later you want to check this box. If you are always going to read your emails on Yahoo! Mail and you are never going to download them to another email program then uncheck this box.
  4. "Retrieve new messages only" is useful when you have the "Leave mail on POP server" box checked. You've already read yesterdays email but you still have it stored on the server so you can download it to Outlook Express when you get home from vacation. You only want to retrieve messages you haven't already downloaded and read.
  5. "Use filters" allows you to set up filters for certain messages. Say you want all the messages from your mom to go to it's own folder. You can set that up using the filter option that Yahoo! Mail also offers.
  6. Click "Save changes" when finished.

Checking Your New Email

  1. When you're finished setting up your ISP email address on Yahoo! Mail you can start retrieving it. Click on "Mail" in the menu at the top of the page.
  2. You'll see a box in the left hand column called "Check Other Mail". In this box is the names of the ISP email addresses you set up. Click on the one you want to check.
  3. You will now be taken to your new emails. Click on the one you want to read and you are reading your ISP email on Yahoo! Mail. 

Firefox, Better Way To Browse

Tabbed Browsing

Tabbed browsing is my favorite thing about using the Firefox browser. Tabs are like having more than one window open, but they are all in one window. There are tabs at the top of your browsing window, each with the name of the Web site they have on them listed in the tabs. You can have as many tabs open at a time as you want, I'm not sure what the maximum amount of tabs you can have open at once, but it's a lot.

firefox


When using the Firefox browser you can use tabbed browsing for many things. One common thing you can use tabbed browsing for is when you are reading the news or your favorite forum. You see a link you want to read but you don't want to loose the page you are already reading. You right click on the link and choose the menu link that says "Open Link in New Tab". The new Web page now opens in a new tab while the Web page you were reading remains open. Now you can finish reading the Web page you are reading and read the other one when you are finished.

Pop-Up Blocking

Pop-up blocking is built right into this browser. No longer will you have to put up with obtrusive ads popping up all over the place while you are trying to surf the Web. This pop-up blocker works really well. I never see pop-up ads while browsing. Windows I want to pop-up work fine though.

Integrated Search

Search the Web right from your browser with Firefox. There is a search bar right on the top of the browser so you can search the Web without having to go to your favorites search engine's Web page first. You can search Google, Yahoo, Amazon, Answers, Ebay and Creative Commons.

If you want to add a different favorite search engine to your Firefox browser's search bar you can. When you click on the "Add Engines" link you can choose from a large list of sites you can add to the search bar. Some of the sites you can choose from are The Weather Channel, Food Network Recipes, Wikipedia, Webster's Dictionary and many more.

Customize Firefox

customize

Change the way your Firefox toolbar looks and works. Install extensions and themes to make your Firefox browser look different and do more. There are all sorts of themes, so you can customize the way your Firefox browser looks. There are also extensions you can add to your Firefox browser. Some of these extensions make your tabbed browsing better, some make Firefox's accessibility better for the disabled, and some are just fun.

Overall

I highly recommend Firefox over Internet Explorer as a browser. In my opinion, Firefox is a much better browser than Internet Explorer, and has a lot more features and extensions you can get for it. Firefox also doesn't crash as much as Internet Explorer for me. That may be just me, but I think it's significant to mention it in this review. I find Firefox to be the best browser I have tried. I haven't tried all of them, but I have tried several and this is my favorite.  

Google Page Creator

Creating a Web site has never been easier. Google has again outdone itself with Google Page Creator. There is a waiting list for Google Page Creator right now and you must have a Google account to even sign up to sign up for Google Page Creator. To get a Google account you either have to know someone who already has one and have them send you an invite or you can get a Google invite by cell phone if you have a cell phone with text messaging.
google

After you sign up for an account with Google you will need to request a Google Page Creator account. To get a Google Page Creator account you need to go to the Google Page Creator page. Enter your Google email address, that's the one you received when you signed up for a Google account, into the box and click on "Add to Wait List". Then you wait until you receive an email from Google Page Creator telling you that your Google Page Creator account has been enabled.

Once your account has been enabled, this could take weeks or even months, you will be able to create your first Web page in minutes. The simple to use point and click design will have you creating great looking Web pages and and an entire Web site without really thinking too much about how to do it. Google hosts the pages you create with Google Page Creator too so you know your Web pages will be safe.

There are 4 different layouts and 41 different styles you can choose for the look of your Web pages. You can change the way your text looks too. Choose different colors, styles and size for your words. Make them bold, italic or change the font style. When you want to add text just click on the page right in your browser and start typing. When you are ready to publish your page just click "Publish" and your done.

This is great for those of us who have very little time, energy or patience to create a Web site and yet want one or need one. It took me only a couple minutes to create my first page and you can do it too.  

Greeting Cards Online for Free

123 Greetings has all kinds of e-cards you can send to your friends and family for special occasions. There are e-cards for just about anything. Send e-cards for birthdays, Christmas, Hanukah, Mother's Day, Father's Day, graduations, just for fun and whatever else you might want to send a greeting e-card for.

christmas

 Send cute e-cards or serious e-cards. You can just look through the site and send e-cards to your friends for fun. Some of the e-cards are really funny or cute and sometimes people just send them to each other so their friends can see them too.


If you're looking for a special kind of e-card to send to your mother for Mother's Day or to your wife for Valentine's Day you are going to have some tough choices. There are so many e-cards to choose from for each holiday or special occasions. There are animated hearts, flowers, cats and anything else.

If you want to celebrate other special days they even have e-cards for Hug Your Cat Day, Plant Something Day, Lilac Festival, International Pickle Week, Circus Day and many others.


hugging cats

You could just send e-card for friendship too. There are many friendship e-cards as well as thank you e-cards that you can send to your friends too. There are also good luck e-cards and get well e-cards you can send to your friends when you need to.

Happy birthday is probably one of the most popular and they have e-cards for that too. There is an animated bear hugging a heart, hearts full of surprises, pat-a-cake cake and much more. These e-cards are interactive, that means they do special things when you click on them.

birthday

All you have to do to send an e-card is find the one you want to send. Then you enter your email address and name and the name and email address of the person you are sending the e-card to. Enter a personalized message for that person and send it. Your friend may be so happy that you sent them an e-card that they will send you one back.  

Download Movies For Free

movie night


Download and watch videos from around the Web for free. Some are movies and TV shows, and others are videos that other people have created themselves. Some are humorous, and some are not safe for children to watch. These are free and legal.

  • AltaVista's Video Search - Search for videos online with this video search engine from AltaVista. You can choose to search for short clips or something longer. Videos you can search for are in several different formats.

  • Atom Films - Funny, short videos. Some, many, are not safe for viewing by children. Some are funny and silly, others are just plain weird.

  • eBaum's World Humor Portal - Another site full of humorous videos. Whenever you have humor you may find that some are not suitable for children.

  • Free Movies by Entertainment Magazine - Classic films for you to watch, free. Cartoons, comedy, adventure, horror, romance and much more. These are the classics. You can watch them for free from here. There's The Three Stooges, Charlie Chaplin and many others.

  • Google Video - Music videos, TV shows, movie trailers and more. Some are free, others you have to pay a small fee.

  • MilkandCookies - Movie clips, parody and more.

  • National Lampoon Videos - Videos by National Lampoon.

  • Singing Fish - Search for videos online.

  • Truveo - Another video search engine.

  • vMix - Parody and other funny videos. Advertisements, animation, celebrities and more.

  • Yahoo! Video Search - Search for videos online with Yahoo!.

  • You Tube - People upload videos they make and you can watch them. You can upload your own too. 

Browsers for Dummies


browsers
As the search for a common platform between computers which run on different operating systems started, the internet was the answer. Internet was invented in 1991 and around the same time, text only browsers were also programmed. So, in theory, browsers have existed since 1991 but they didn't support images until 1993 through Mosaic 1.

As the internet advanced, so did the browsers. This article talks about the 'behind the scenes' of a browser, layman comparison of browsers and an insight into the future of browsers.

A browser is a simple computer program that can detect the code and execute it not on the user's computer but on the host server. Hence, a website that is loaded from a server works on all the operating systems as the actual code is being executed on the server and not on the user's computer. A browser just shows you the result of the code. Hence the name browser.

Presently we have a big choice of browsers to choose from. Some popular browsers are Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Opera, Flock etc. We have different browsers written by different companies. Some browsers like firefox and flock are open source i.e different people contribute code to the program with a view of developing the program and not for financial gain. Internet Explorer is from Microsoft and it comes pre-loaded on all Windows machines. Hence Internet Explorer has become a generic name for a web browser. Mac has its own set of browsers like Safari and Camino along with Firefox.

Just listing the available browsers is no fun. The truth remains in the backend as to the main differences between the browsers.

There is an organization called W3C which makes the coding rules for all the browsers. In the sense, W3C specifies how a particular code should be executed and the general set of code that it recognizes. Internet Explorer is a browser which does not adhere to the W3C rules and they made their own set of rules and their own functions. This has caused a big controversy in the browser industry. Many geeks like myself have not supported Internet Explorer's stand on code deciphering. Firefox is the browser that is most popular with people who are knowledgeable about computers and internet. It follows the rules very closely and web designers often do not have problems with firefox but on the contrary Internet Explorer is a nightmare. I wrote an article on why Internet Explorer shouldn't be used a while back. Opera and Flock are popular but not as much Firefox. Read an article by me on browser wars. It talks more about different browsers and there are some interesting comments as well.

Modern browsers are developing many features that make our browsing experience a wonderful one. All the latest browsers have tabs. If more than one website needs to be browsed, a new window need not be opened but a tab would accomplish the job just as good or maybe better. Firefox uses extensions which can extend the functionality of a browser from just browsing to a lot of different functions. There are rumors that 3D browsers are going to be a reality in the very near future.

These are some of the basic things that one needs to know about a web browser. If you feel that there needs to be more information covered under this topic, do let me know. I will be eager to hear your opinions.

MySpace for Your Space

my space logo


MySpace is a place where you can create your own space online. Maybe you want to put up a page on the Internet that says a little bit about who you are. You want to add pictures of you and your family. Maybe you even want to create a blog so you can keep track of the things that are going on in your life.

MySpace will let you do all of that. Creating a space with MySpace will give you a place on the Net to call your own. You can list your hobbies and favorite things to do. You can talk about your life and your family. You can show off pictures you have taken. This is your place to talk about you. It's kind of like a personal business card of yourself, online.

Go go MySpace.com and set up an account. Add a photo of yourself if you have one. Fill out the profile and start adding friends to your profile. MySpace is a community so find your friend's MySpace account and add them. If your friends don't have MySpace accounts yet you can send them an invite right from your profile.

Don't, however, add information like your address and telephone number to your MySpace account. You don't want strangers showing up at your house or calling you on the phone. Also don't talk about where you work or go to school, for the same reason. Also be careful what you write about online. You never know if your employer, teacher, parent or someone else important in your life will be reading your MySpace profile.

There is a way to make your profile private or password protected if you don't want other people seeing it. This would be your best bet for privacy but not very good if you're on there to make friends and meet people. Use some common sense when posting things on your MySpace account and you will be fine.

Web Site Hosting


web hosting

There are many places online where you can have a Web site. Some are free, some are not. If you only want to build a small personal Web site then free is good enough. If you want an online photo album then you will want to use a photo hosting service. If you want to create a blog then you will want to use a blogging service. If you are building a bigger personal Web site or you want to create a Web site for your business then you will want to use a pay hosting service.

Free Hosting - Here is a small list of a few free hosting services.

Photo Album - This is a small list of a few photo album services.

Blogging - These are a couple good blogging sites.

Pay Hosting - Here are a couple hosting sites you can use for your business site of a larger personal site.

Join Ebay Auctions

ebay

If you can buy things at Ebay auctions then you can also sell things at Ebay auctions. Use Ebay auctions to make some money selling things you don't need or use anymore.

For many years people have been going to Ebay auctions to buy and sell things. Sometimes they buy and sell things at Ebay auctions for more than it's worth, sometimes less. Ebay auctions are a great place to go to buy and to sell things. Over the years I have used Ebay auctions to buy many, many things. You can often find just about anything on Ebay auctions even if you can't find it anywhere else.

Even things that are no longer made can often be found on Ebay auctions. Once I found a Limoges plate from a collection I have on an Ebay auction. The collection came out in the 70's and one of the plates became broken and I needed to replace it. I found it and bought it from an Ebay auction.

Finding What You're Looking For on Ebay Auctions

Finding what you are looking for on Ebay auctions is easy. Just go to Ebay.com and type something into the Ebay auctions's search box. Make your search specific, but not too much. If you don't want to use search to find what you're looking for on Ebay auctions then you can click on an Ebay auctions category and then a sub-category and look for your item from there.

Let's say you are looking for a Dell laptop on Ebay auctions. You can either type "dell laptop" into the Ebay auction's search bar or you can click on the category "Computers & Networking" and then under the sub-category "Laptops, Notebooks" click on "Dell". Over on the left sidebar of the Ebay auctions site will be a menu to help you further filter down your search.

Bidding on Ebay Auctions

Click on the link of something you want to buy from Ebay auctions. At the top of the Ebay auctions page is a button that says "Bid Now", click on this button. Type in the maximum you would bid on this item and follow the directions Ebay auctions has. If this is the first time you are bidding on something at Ebay auctions you will be asked to sign up with Ebay auctions first.

Warnings About Ebay Auctions

Be careful before bidding on something at Ebay auctions. Read the item's description carefully. Sometimes items for sale on Ebay auctions are not what the title says they are. Many times the items are not new. Sometimes the items are even broken. People do sell broken items on Ebay auctions because some people will buy them and fix them up.

Check prices for the item you want to buy at other sites before you make a bid on Ebay auctions. If you can get an item for $10 on Amazon.com then don't bid $20 on an Ebay auction. Also check to see what the shipping price is on the Ebay auction you are thinking of bidding on. Sometimes shipping is significant on an Ebay auction, occasionally shipping costs more than the item itself.

Check the seller's feedback scores. Ebay auctions keeps track of all this for you. If all the people who have bought things from this person at Ebay auctions in the past have listed negative comments, don't make a bid on an item from this person on Ebay auctions.

If you get an email from what looks like Ebay auctions telling you to click on a link and change your Ebay auctions account information, don't click on it. It may be spam and a way for people to steal your credit card information. Instead, go to your Ebay auctions account using Ebay.com and check your Ebay auctions account information and messages on MyEbay to make sure everything is right.

Paying for Ebay Auctions

Most people take PayPal for payment on Ebay auctions. Many Ebay auctions take credit cards, often only through PayPal though. Before bidding on an Ebay auction check to see what kinds of payment the person takes. Most Ebay auctions do not take personal checks. Some Ebay auctions will take personal checks and money orders but will not ship the item bought at the Ebay auction until the check clears.

Selling on Ebay Auctions

You must sign up with Ebay auctions first before you can sell anything. At the top of the Ebay auctions page is a link that says "Sell", click on it. Then click the button that says "Sell Your Item". Just follow the Ebay auction directions and soon you will be selling your item in an Ebay auction.

Make sure the amount you are asking for in your Ebay auction is reasonable. I know you want to make a lot of money when you sell things at an Ebay auction but if you place your starting amount too high nobody will bid on your Ebay auction and you will make nothing.

Internet Search Engines

Internet search engines are a place online where you can go to find out what else is online. When you need to know something or want to look something up, the best way to do it online is by going to an Internet search engine. There are many search engines to choose from on the Internet, and they all work in different ways.

search

Some Internet search engines are updated manually, that is pages are added by people who decide what belongs on that particular search engine. Others are updated automatically, someone programs the search engine to find pages on the Internet and add them to the search engine. Some Internet search engines, like Netscape's, are powered by other Internet search engines.

Say you have need to find out what you should feed your new Siamese cat. Go to a search engine and type in "siamese cat food" (without the quotes) and you will get results telling you what your new Siamese cat needs to eat to be healthy. Maybe you know someone with Cancer and you want to know about the different remedies out there for Cancer. Go to the search engine and type in something like "cancer cures" or "cancer symptom remedy".

All Internet search engines have their own way of deciding which Web pages show up in a search when someone types a keyword into their search engine. Be careful when searching on a search engine that you are fairly specific. If you type in the word "cat" you may get results on the animal, the play, cat grooming, cat food or a number of other things with the word "cat" in it.

Here are a few of the most popular Internet search engines:

Set Up Outlook Express

mail

Before you get started setting up your email you will need some information from your Internet service provider (ISP). When you signed up for your email account your ISP probably gave you a username and password. You will need these to set up your email account. You also need a couple other things. There is

Setting Up Your Email

Open Outlook Express. In the menu at the top of the screen click on "Tools" then on "Accounts". In the top of the window that pops up there are tabs, click on the tab thats says "Mail". On the right side of this window are some buttons, click on the one that says "Add" and then on "Mail" in the menu that pops out.

Here are the things you will be entering into the Add Mail boxes:

  • Display Name: Put your name here. Enter it the way you want people to see it when you are sending them emails.
  • E-Mail Address: Enter your full email address the way someone would type it in to send you an email. Should look something like; myname@ispname.com .
  • My Incoming Server Is a: This should be POP3.
  • Incoming Mail Server: You should have received this information from your ISP. Check the paperwork you received when you signed up or call and ask them what it is. It should probably look something like this; mail.ispname.com .
  • Outgoing Mail Server: You also should have received this from your ISP when you signed up along with the incoming mail server. It should look something like this; mail.ispname.com or smtp.ispname.com .
  • Account Name: This is also known as "user name". It's a name you gave to your ISP when you signed up so you can access your email. It's probably the same as the first part of your email address, the part before the @ sign.
  • Password: You should have either picked a password when you signed up for your email account or been given a password, could be anything.
  • Remember Password: If you are the only one using your computer or you don't care if other people read your email then check this box. If you don't want other people being able to access your email then uncheck this box.
  • Log On Using Secure Password Authentication: If your ISP's instructions tell you to check this then check it, otherwise leave it unchecked.


Properties

After you have finished entering all your information and clicked the "Finish" button you will see your email listed in the "Mail" tab of the "Internet Accounts" box. Click on your email address to highlight it and then click on the properties button. Make sure you are in the "General" tab.

The very first thing you will see at the top of this box is the name of your email account. It probably has your ISP's incoming mail server name in here. You can change this to whatever you want. Call it "My email" if you want to. This is here to help you distinguish different email accounts from each other if you have more than one.

Next is you name. If you don't like the way it looks you can change it here. The next line says "Organization". If this is your personal email address you can just leave this blank. If this is a work or organization email address you can enter the name of the organization here.

Your email address is listed next followed by something called "Reply address". The reply address can be left blank if this is your only email address or you want replies to your email sent to this email address. If you have other email addresses and you receive your email at one but want replies sent somewhere else then enter the alternate email address here.

At the bottom it says "Include this account when receiving mail or synchronizing". This should be checked if you want your email to be checked automatically when you open Outlook Express or when you click the "Send/Recv" button. If you only want to check this email when you want and not automatically then make sure this is unchecked.

Click "OK" and then "Close" on the Internet Accounts" box and you are finished setting up your email. If you want to see if you have mail, click on the "Send/Recv" button at the top of Outlook Express".  

McAfee Antivirus

For many years McAfee has been keeping computer virus' off computers. McAfee offers computer virus protection for your computer for a yearly fee. Their virus scanner will check your computer for computer virus' and some other things that plague your computer. McAfee's computer virus protection also comes with a program that will catch computer virus' as they come in to your computer so your computer never gets infected by the computer virus.
mcafee

If you've ever received an email from a stranger with an attachment there's a possibility that your computer may have come in contact with a computer virus. Opening a strange email attachment can be potentially very dangerous for your computer. That's not the only way your computer can be infected with a computer virus though.

Computer virus' can come in your email as a self opening attachment too. As soon as you open the email you become infected with a computer virus. Computer virus' can sometimes be coded into a Web page. You're browsing along, looking at personal Web pages and Zap!, you're infected with a computer virus. Almost as common as computer virus' that come in your email are computer virus' that you can get from file sharing programs. These are programs you use to download music, video and other files over the Internet using a program that you download. These programs are not secure and can, occasionally, contain a computer virus.

When you use an antivirus program such as McAfee to protect your computer from a computer virus you will be less likely to get a computer virus on your computer. If you get a lot of junk email, known as spam, if you like downloading music or you often browse uncharted territory on the Net then you definitely need an anti-virus program like McAfee.

McAfee offers antivirus help for individuals and businesses. It's also offered in many different countries. McAfee also offers more than just anti-virus help. McAfee also has other programs to help protect your computer from spam, spyware and many other things.  

ICQ - Instant Messaging

icq
ICQ stands for "I Seek You". That's one of the things it does. There's a way for you to search for other people that are also on ICQ. I have found friends this way. But ICQ offers more than an instant messaging and chat program, it's a community.

IM and Chat

When you and your friends download ICQ they will get an instant messaging program that lets you keep track of your friends and if they are online. You can send them messages and if they are not online at the time ICQ will save the message until they are online and then send it to them. You can choose to view only friends that are online or you can view your entire friends list. You can also create categories of friends to keep them organized. The chat program allows 4 people to all chat at the same time in real time. While chatting you can add smileys and sounds to make chatting more fun.

ICQ Site

On the ICQ site you can participate in chats and message boards. Just choose the group that's right for you and join in. If you click on "Web Tools" in the top menu you can build your own ICQ page. On this you can tell a little about yourself so other users can find you better.

Gmail - Google's Email

gmail

Gmail Conversations

Let's say that someone emails you, you email them back, they email you again all using the reply field in your email. All of these emails will be saved together as one conversation. When you click on one of the emails you will see all three. On the left side of the screen is a link that says "Expand All".

Click on this to open all the emails in a conversation. Click on "Collapse All" to close all the emails in a conversation except the one you want to read. When a new email is received that is part of the conversation the whole conversation is moved to the top of the Inbox.

Gmail Labels

Labels are kind of like folders in other email programs, but not quite. With other email programs you can create folders to move your email messages to so you can organize them a little better. Labels can be used the same way but there is a big difference. You can label something and still keep it in your Inbox.

When you label something you can then archive it. When something is archived it is no longer seen from the Inbox. If you want to view all emails with that label then you click on the link for the label found on the left hand column of the page. All emails with that label can be seen from this link, even those that are also in the Inbox. An email can have more than one label if you want it to.

To create a label click on the "Settings" link on the top, right of the page. On the Settings page click on "Labels". You'll see a box called "Create a new label". Put in the name of your label here and click "Create".

To add a label to an email go back to your inbox and check the box next to the email you want to add the label to. You'll see a drop down box above where your email are listed. The box currently says "More Actions" in it. Pull down the menu and click on the label name that you want to use. You'll see the name of the label show up right before the Subject title of your email.

To archive this email and remove it from your Inbox make sure the check box next to the email is checked and click on the "Archive" box.

Gmail Filters

A filter is a way to have a label automatically added to an email when it comes in or to have the email be archived before it ever hits your Inbox. This is great if you belong to an email group and you don't want it overstuffing your Inbox with emails or if you just like to have your emails stay organized and out of your Inbox.

At the top of the page is a small link that says "Create a filter", click on this. The other way to get to this same page is to click on "Settings" and then on "Create a filter", they both take you to the same page. Fill out your search criteria and click on "Next Step". On the next page you can choose which filter, if any, you want to add to these emails. You can also choose whether or not you want the email to show up in your Inbox or not. You can also have the email deleted before you even see it. Then click "Create Filter".

Sign Up For Gmail

Gmail has a lot more to offer but these are the main features. To sign up for Gmail go to the Gmail Homepage. If you can't sign up for Gmail from there send me your email address and I will send you a Gmail invite.

What Is A Weblog

weblog

In the Beginning

Back when the Web was new and Web pages were just being thought of people started writing online diaries. That's what they were known as back then. They were written on simple HTML Web pages. No special effects, except for the occasional Javascript or dHTML fun. They had a guestbook so people could leave messages. That was pretty much it.

The writers of these online diaries wrote in them just as if it were a real diary. Most didn't think that anyone would really read them, after all the Web is a big place, who would read their dinky little Web site. Then it happed that people actually started reading online diaries.  Online diaries became popular and online diarists were becoming famous in the online world. They started making their Web sites fancier and more compelling. They all had fancy names like Living In The Bonus Round and Diary of an Average Australian.

For a long time people on the Net questioned why anyone would want to post their diary online. They couldn't figure out what would possess someone to put the most private, intimate details of their lives on the Net for all to see and read. They questioned the sanity of some of these online diary writers.

Here and Now

Here we are 10 years later and for the past few years there have been online and software programs that will let you automatically create an online diary. You don't need any HTML knowledge or any coding at all. Just sign up start writing. They're not called online diaries anymore, now they're called Weblogs or blogs.

Millions of people have blogs. People from all over the world blog. They are of all ages all races and lots of different countries. Even kids can have blogs, although legally you need to be 13, kids of all ages are doing it. It's so easy to write a blog now that anyone can do it, even generation X'ers and baby boomers can handle having a blog, and they do.

Today's blog lets you add photos with the simplest of ease. With some all you have to do is upload the photo with a photo upload tool that's right in the blog and add the photo where you want it. Couldn't be simpler. A lot of blogs also let your readers reply to your posts. This is a great feature if you like conversing with others on the Web about your life.

Signing up to have your own blog is simple too. Just go to a blogging site like Blogger or Live Journal and follow the directions. Then you just have to remember to go back to your blog and update it once in a while.

Popular Cartoon Characters Used As Facebook Profile Pictures

Facebook users are changing their profile pictures to cartoon characters. Take a step back in time and relive your childhood by changing your Facebook profile picture to your favorite cartoon character. From Smurfette to Ren and Stimpy, some of the most beloved and popular cartoon characters can currently be seen all over Facebook.
cartoon characters

The Facebook social networking site is always changing things up and the users of Facebook love to participate in various games and support social causes. This year people have been quick to change their usual Facebook profile picture to that of a cartoon character. If you log into Facebook you will see a sea of cartoon faces staring back at you!

If you haven't gotten into the game yet or can't decide on a cartoon character then have a look at the list below.

Popular Cartoon Characters for Your Facebook Profile

  1. Rainbow Brite
  2. Smurfs
  3. Smurfette
  4. Ren and Stimpy
  5. Rugrats
  6. Care Bears
  7. Winnie the Pooh
  8. Piglet
  9. Mickey Mouse
  10. Minnie Mouse
  11. SpongeBob Squarepants
  12. Dora the Explorer
  13. Pink Panther
  14. Charlie Brown
  15. Aladain
  16. Nemo
  17. Cinderella
  18. Snow White
  19. Seven Dwarves
  20. Dumbo
  21. The Grinch
  22. Betty Boop
  23. Mr. Magoo
  24. Little Mermaid
  25. The Powerpuff Girls
  26. Underdog
  27. Tweetie Bird
  28. Sylvester the Cat
  29. Bugs Bunny
  30. Scooby Doo
  31. Road Runner
  32. Wile E. Coyete
  33. The Flinstones
  34. Mighty Mouse
  35. Popeye
  36. Curious George
  37. Rocky and Bullwinkle
  38. The Simpsons
  39. Beavis and Butt-head
  40. Stewie Griffen
The changing of profile photos on Facebook has brought a flood of childhood memories back to many users. Most people have changed their profile to their most beloved cartoon character as a child.
facebook page

Some people have even found ways to change their own profile photo into a cartoon image. So, people that do not have a favorite or beloved cartoon character can join in the game and put up their own customized cartoon image.

Self-portrait type cartoon images are gaining in popularity on the Facebook social networking site. As a result, there are numerous cartoon websites offering to change real life photos into cartoon images.
self-portrait types

There are two theories as to the profile photos on Facebook are changing at such a rapid pace. The first one is that it is simply a Facebook game to get everyone on the site to change their profile picture to a cartoon character so that whenever anyone logs on to the social networking site there will be no human profile pictures only cartoon profile pictures.

self-portrait cartoon

The other theory is that it is a drive to bring attention the ongoing global issue of child abuse. Either way, it has brought lots of attention to Facebook and has many people wondering why so many profile pictures have been changed to favorite childhood cartoon characters.

Proper Behavior for Online Employers and Virtual Workers

virtual workers behavior

One area where offline and online environments intersect is human behavior. Though most Internet users enjoy, if not value, anonymity, this does not negate the essence of showing good behavior when socializing online.

Technical glitches excepted, it is perceived rude to ignore an email sent by someone you already know, or to leave a chat mate waiting for your reply without saying "Bye" or without informing her/him that you have to do something else.

It is also not nice to join a site forum or a chat room and attack fellow chatters with racist, insensitive, and hurtful comments. In the work context, proper behavior for online employers and telecommuting workers requires professionalism, open communication, and respect.

What does it mean to be professional?

Being professional can help an online applicant secure a job offer. It can also lead to more work and other potential opportunities. Professionalism is observed when an online worker does and finishes a task at a given time. Ideally, such judicious competence underlines the need for submitting quality work.

There are those, however, who forgo quality in exchange for meeting a deadline. A worker then needs to be careful in doing her/his online job to avoid tarnishing not just the kind of product s/he delivers, but her/his name as well. If completing it conflicts with a personal errand, s/he knows what to prioritize. Otherwise, it is better that s/he inform or negotiate with the employer to give her/him a modified deadline.

A professional online employer, on the other hand, does not post fraudulent ads on job sites. S/He has a legitimate business identity and offers a potential employee a good reward and benefits scheme. Exploiting workers is not part of her/his value system and business ethics. For instance, many online ads for freelance writers offer a measly payment.

This shows that people who paid for these posts think that writing articles is easy. But serious writers often do research and spend time rewriting and editing their work before submitting the final one. Thus, offering less than a dollar to $10 per article is deemed unfair, if not exploitative.

Why open communication is necessary

Being able to talk to one's boss while doing a job makes communication an integral element in maintaining a good online work relationship. The lines should always be open for the good of both parties.

This aids transparency and helps build trust. Emails, phone calls, chats, and every other medium that can facilitate the communication process are important. Questions, suggestions, and anything else related to work that needs to be resolved can only be addressed through open and honest communication.

Importance of respect

Being a professional and able to communicate involves respect. Respect entails valuing the time and resources that both employer and worker can offer each other. This also plays a crucial role most particularly in handling differences. Both parties should use words that they would not regret expressing.

Online communication does have its own nuances. Consequently, misunderstandings can happen. Both parties then should be mindful of the words they use. In cases of serious disagreements, it is still vital to settle issues before either party decides to terminate the relationship.

Good behavior knows no boundaries

Professionalism, open communication, and respect are all important in creating and maintaining good online work relationships. These not only ensure trust and a good name for both employers and workers, but they also preserve human dignity even in the virtual realm.

Advantages and Issues of Having Home-based Online Jobs

Similar to the real world, finding the right online work and doing it are not easy feats. Unlike offline, however, many online jobs could be done at home. Employers across the globe provide these opportunities. Several companies, as well as universities with distance learning programs, have been outsourcing jobs to and contracting workers from local communities and developing countries.

home based job

Call centers, computer firms, and small enterprises, among others, employ online workers. Positions range from customer care agents, website builders, transcribers, and content writers to curriculum developers, tutors, researchers, and virtual assistants. Doing online work from home then could mean telecommuting or marketing and supervising a business.

Advantages of telecommuting

Working from home allows parents to have an income while taking care of their children. It allows professionals to be their own boss. For full-time employees and students, the Internet can also provide them part-time jobs that they can do at night and during weekends, such as online writing, data encoding, and answering customer calls.

Certainly, online jobs help struggling workers to earn extra cash. These also provide them some control over when and where they like to work. Of course, how to do the job depends on what it is about and its requirements.

Issues of doing online jobs at home

In spite of its advantages, doing online work at home also has its risks and drawbacks:
  • Low compensation and zero benefits
Though they provide money and occasional promotion, online jobs rarely offer a high salary. They also do not have a benefits package that is typically given to office or company employees. Such package may include health insurance, subsidized tuition, paid vacation leaves, and other non-cash rewards.
  • Erratic work time and inadequate rest
The time allotted for work is influenced by other concerns. Stay-at-home parents still have to do house chores. Others run errands for loved ones. Unless one prefers doing his/her job beyond regular work hours or is more productive at night, not a few online workers stay awake until midnight or until early morning. Some even sacrifice their weekends to complete a task or to meet a deadline. The lack of sleep takes a toll on their health, even among insomniacs, as it can lead to poor concentration, depression, and weight problems.
  • Absence of or minimal legal protection for online workers (and online employers too)
Unless both employer and worker value their relationship that is mostly based on trust, the lack of a regulating and monitoring body to set online work standards makes either party vulnerable to cheating and exploitation. No institutional mechanism is set up to receive and process complaints about online work arrangements.
This is especially true at the national level even if the country is a member of the International Labor Organization (ILO). Nonetheless, there are a few sites that have policies on settling employer-worker disputes which may result in the termination of either party's subscription or membership privileges depending on the nature of the offense.

Weighing options

Certainly, the virtual world is as imperfect as the people who created it. It is also as imperfect as the real world. It is best then that online employers, telecommuting employees, and virtual job applicants be aware of the pros and cons of engaging in a web-based work relationship.