– Kara Deniz
The holidays are right around the corner and that can only mean one thing… those dreaded shopping trips are closer than we realize. Then again, maybe not. For those who abhor the thought of crowded malls and endless lines, flooz.com provides a unique alternative to department store shopping. In the age of technological advances, gift giving over the Internet has become more popular than ever.
Flooz.com provides online gift currency. The gift sender signs up with the web site and can send online currency to anyone with an e-mail address.
At the site, one can spend as little as a dollar. A selection can be made from one of many online greeting cards featured on the site. The card is personalized and then sent to friend, co-worker or relative of choice. In fact, flooz.com will send this online gift on whatever day the sender chooses it to be mailed. When the recipient opens this e-mail greeting card, they will discover that they have received online money to spend at over sixty Web stores that are affiliated with flooz.com. Recipients can spend their online gift money at big name web sites such as J. Crew, Tower Records, Sketchers, Barnes and Noble, Steve Madden and many more.
The mission of flooz.com is to give people an instantaneous and thoughtful way to express themselves through gift giving. The site can be viewed as helpful and time saving, in addition to being a thoughtful gesture during the holiday season. However, spending time in long lines and picking out an actual gift is what holiday gift giving is all about. The Web site makes it possible for recipients to easily use the “currency” and get what they really want for the holidays. Yet, at the same time, flooz’s money can be seen as colder than handing someone cash in an envelope. Ultimately, some thought needs to be expended into gift giving.
Flooz.com is the perfect site for corporation heads who want to give gifts to employees, or for college students who want to give gifts to techno-savvy friends. For that special present for a significant other or close relative, it may be a better idea to stick to waiting in the long lines of disgruntled.
– Mickey Minnick
Blackvoices.com is the site “Where African Americans live online.” In a sense this statement is true. The site offers options and outlets for every aspect of life from careers to entertainment, with a cultural spin or viewpoint on every subject. Blackvoices is full of cool stuff for anyone college-aged and up to play.
In general, the Web site seems to cater more to the established middle-aged community rather than students.
Blackvoices asserts they have more than 500,000 registered members. Of these members, the average age of registered females is thirty-four, while the average age for males is thirty-six, with a combined average income of $48,000 to $64,000 a year. Content placement can be excused because Blackvoices does an excellent job of meeting its member’s needs.
Membership to the site is free. One can begin using their account after they register by following the instructions in an email from Blackvoices. To utilize the majority of the resources you must register first. This is great, but the email isn’t instantaneous and you have to wait about a day for confirmation unlike other sites where you receive confirmation in less than a minute.
Required options for registering are minimal, but there are a lot of optional questions that help other users find out who you are, such as orientation and ethnicity. You can even write a biography of up to a thousand words. There is a member photos section, which serves as an interactive personal page with the member’s information, including contact guidelines and a picture. The photo page contains a plethora member pics. (Ladies, the number of male picks and info is largely disproportionate to female postings).
The most comprehensive section of Blackvoices is the career section. Viewers can search for jobs in their area and field of work, and view company profiles. One can post their resume and contact information right on the site, answer a few questions and only companies who pay for access to the resumes see your information. Blackvoices covered all the bases in this section, first from finding job availability, to researching a particular company and applying for a position. Plus all these resources are free.
Some of the other goodies on the Web site include: news (updated hourly), the Boondocks cartoon section, message boards (to post and respond you must have BV email), which include topics like politics, relationships, sports and religion. The section “Voices on the Street” is a weekly updated TV style section that asks people on the street for their views on a particular subject or question. Questions range from views on the legalization of the abortion pill RU-486 to “What will happen to black America if the GOP wins the election?”