How to clear music in iOS 7.1


You can clear or delete your iPhone’s music in a few steps.


This is a different kind of post for this blog. But when I find something frustrating & then find a fix, I like to share the information. The following is the result of a few different searches and explorations of the various interfaces. I hope I can save someone the frustration and “surprises” I had.

I hadn’t played music on my iPhone in a while, and it looks like somewhere in the 7.0/7.1 update they added some features that really bother me. One of them is suggesting music, “helpfully” pushing it with a little cloud icon. Another feature is that when I deleted all my music in iTunes, there was still some of the older stuff on the phone.

How to fix: It looks like the best way is to start clean. Here’s how to clear music from your iOS 7.1 device. I used iTunes here, so iTunes instructions may differ for you, YMMV.

  1. Delete music from your iPhone in iTunes. This is the standard, old step, which used to work all the time.
    1. Open iTunes with iPhone plugged in
    2. Navigate to your iPhone
    3. Click “Music” in the navigation on the right
    4. Select all your music
    5. Press the Delete key
  2. Stop the “Cloud” music from appearing
    1. On your iPhone, go to Settings
    2. Scroll down to “Music”
    3. On the “Show All Music” setting, turn it to Off (0)
  3. Remove all music from iPhone memory
    1. On your iPhone, go to Settings > General > Usage
    2. After the apps load under “Storage”, click the “Music” icon
    3. Click “Edit” on the Music screen
    4. Select “All Music”
    5. Press “Delete”

After this, you should have a clear Music app. iPhone should tell you that there’s no music. That’s how it worked for me, anyway, after several searches online. You should be able to add music as you like now.


Did this work for you? Did you have other frustrations? Let’s talk about it.


Oreo is the Measure of Online Content


Oreo cookie has many lessons for us as writers, as content strategists. Its branding teams work hard to find what is essential about their product and let everything else about it take shape according to the medium it is placed into.


Oreo cookies keep popping up in my content feeds. That includes news media, content strategy, content marketing, and conferences. The social marketing team behind them have been a tour de force in recent years. They “get it”. But they also up-end one of the long-standing rules of thumb in the marketplace, that of first mover advantage.

Oreo is an experience. NPR launched a story 2 years ago about Oreo’s foray into China. What was interesting here was that the iconic Twist, Lick, Dunk routine was completely foreign to the Chinese market. And since adults didn’t have the experience of doing it as kids, it was difficult to bring that set up to the culture. In other words, they had to bring the experience of Oreo to the culture. So they introduced a series of commercials where kids show adults how to do it. There’s a bonding moment and it’s too cute for words.

Impact moment: What is essential experience you need to describe in your work? Focus on that, and the rest will radiate out from there.

Oreo is a medium of expression. Where Oreo has found new traction lately has surrounded their social media team(s). They’ve shown a light-hearted, quirky branding to the cookie, which goes far beyond the Twist, Lick, Dunk routine. Their Daily Twist campaign keeps the cookie right up front and relevant. They’ve even shown a willingness to interact with other brands. This plays up to their underlying concept, that Oreo is always with something else: Oreo and milk; Oreo and family; Oreo and friends.

Impact moment: what are the underlying concepts of your products? Can you reference them across multiple bits of content?

Oreo is ready. But the reason Oreo is on my mind today is Kristina Halvorson’s SXSW 2014 talk, “Go home marketing, you are drunk.” There is both the audio and the slides available online. Both this talk, and Colleen Jones’ and Phillip Wisniewski’s talk on Content Strategy and Content Engineering from a recent conference, take as their focal point the Oreo tweet from the 2013 Superbowl, “You can still dunk in the dark.” Halvorson makes several compelling arguments, not the least of which is–ala Steve Jobs–understand the content. Content isn’t a pastry filling you squeeze into a form at the last minute. In order for content–and therefore your image of yourself–meaningful to the world, it must take its own shape piece strung together with piece.

One of the things I love is that Halvorson is the only other Content Strategist I’ve come across who will cop to the hard parts of strategy. She openly quoted my favorite author on it, Richard Rumelt (read his Good Strategy/Bad Strategy book if you can).

Impact moment: Know your principles and stick to them. They are as limiting as they are enabling, but that is what a good strategy does.

Oreo was second. The rule of thumb in media is that the one who moves first is set up to win. However, did you know that Oreo was the knock-off version of Sunshine’s Hydrox cookie?

Sorry if I lost a little focus there. All this talk of Oreo is making my head swim. In milk.


New Google Drive/Docs Sheets – 1 Feature from Amazing


Google’s New Sheets (spreadsheets) roll out with the Google Analytics add-on is a good start to mainstreaming Nick Mihailovski’s magic script, but until you can schedule queries to run, stick with Nick’s.


At the start of March 2014, Google rolled out a new version of their spreadsheets, which–through the Analytics add-on–tightly couples with Google Analytics. It’s pretty awesome, and allows you to begin a basic inquiry into your metrics. To get anything beyond basics, you still need to know how to write the dimensions and metrics, but we’ll get to that later.

They’ve actually solved for a problem Nick Mihailovski solved for 6 months back, in August 2013. In the Old Sheets, Nick introduced the “magic” script. This wonderful bit of programming allows you to write complex queries without coding them out. The problem, though, was that there was some tedium involved, tedium I had written about navigating in a pretty great blog post, shortly before the launch of New Sheets. Note to self: impact is measured by timing.

One of the brilliant upsides of Nick’s work is that you can schedule when your scripts run, so that you can have constantly up-to-date dashboards. (See the “triggers” under the “edit script” window.)

As of this writing, though, scheduling is incompatible with New Sheets and the Analytics add-on. This means that, though the tedious parts are now made smooth, you must manually run the script to get today’s information. That’s where it’s lacking, imho.

So I’d still recommend going with Nick’s tutorial and keeping with Old Sheets for as long as you can. It may also be easier for you to figure out which dimensions and metrics you need in order to get the information you want. You’ll need these in New Sheets, too, when you create in-depth charts.

Tip: New Sheets uses person friendly terms on its initial query builder window. You will the actual metrics names once this window goes away or you want to customize your query. It can be confusing, so I just skip them in the query builder. For instance, ga:pagePath (the unique path to a page, excluding your base URL) becomes “Page”. But if you write “Page” or forget the “ga:” for any dimension or metric, your query won’t run.

4/7/14 Update: You can no longer revert back to Old Sheets–at least I can’t–despite the google directions that explain how.


Nick’s tutorial, which shows you how to get the Google Analytics Magic script and create dashboards. Only works with Old Sheets. The steps have changed as the Sheets interface changed, but you can still get through it.

The Dimensions and Metrics you’ll need for crafting stunning queries, whether you use New Sheets or Old.

Steve Jobs: Content over Process

I used to have the first third of this quote from Steve Jobs in my sig file, and then my manager at the time reminded me of the 2nd part. So here’s a thought for the weekend:

The best people are the ones who really understand the content, and they’re a pain in the butt to manage, but you put up with it because they’re so great at the content. And that’s what makes great products, it’s not process.

Today’s tip for maximum impact: Understand the Content.


March Bonus Book: The Go-Getter


The Go-Getter feels a bit out of place in our 21st Century world, but has a tiny core that remains applicable to any age.


I first heard about The Go-Getter by Peter Kyne, an  old (published in 1921), small (62 pages) book, on the EntreLeadership podcast. Like QBQ!, which I wrote about previously, it is  required reading at the Dave Ramsey company, and also like that book, it can be summed up in a pithy aphorism: Never give up. And it tells the story of a person who won’t give up.

This may be the oldest instance of the modern day business book as fable, and so the likes of Ken Blanchard and Patrick Lencioni owe a great deal to Peter Kyne. But in being first, there is a clunkiness to finding its way. Some of the language is odd and purposefully convoluted for comic effect. There are political commentaries our contemporaries would wisely leave out. And there are wisps of schmaltziness, such as the hero’s unnamed hero who is most likely being the person to whom the author dedicated the book.

It’s difficult to find offensive a book that requires so little, so let’s give it the benefit of the doubt and abstract its lesson. In the words of Winston Churchill, Never never never give up. A phrase, to be fair, uttered some 20 years after this book saw its day. This may be the truest way to truly have an impact.

And yet there is something disagreeable about this book that leaves a bad taste in my mouth. I would be hard pressed to find someone else who admires the kind of on-the-job hazing that Cappy Ricks employs in to award his underlings his “Degree of the Blue Vase.” And it is in face of the impossibility that our hero becomes admirable. Our hero, by the way, is a 1-armed amputee war hero from The Great War who limps along with a surgically shortened leg. He’s seen some stuff, including pulling a diamond ring worth about $32k in today’s money off a dead woman he found in a building he had just bombed during the War.

It’s not just that our hero has to face impossible circumstances that only a person someone we would readily classify as a sociopath could overcome, but that he faced this situation because of his loyalty to his boss who put him there. That is, the boss to whom he pledged his fealty took advantage of him–and all his top-drawer directs–in order to see what they are made of. And when all is revealed to be “just part of the test,” our hero rightly wants to put the man who set it up in the hospital. (Imagine getting walloped by a one-armed man, and you can imagine the fury involved.)

Maybe it’s a cultural thing, an esprit de corps that I don’t share, something, I hope, that has been lost to the ages.

Perhaps we can sit back in our comfortable chairs and think, “Glad that’s not me”, or “I’ve never had to face something so horrible,” and that may be the point. Perhaps that is why this book has stayed somewhat current. We can see someone go through terrible times in a business setting and imagine ourselves doing the same. In that sense, our hero’s triumph is our triumph.

Books Referenced

The Go-Getter: A Story that Tells you How to Be One (also available for free via Project Gutenberg)


March Books: Accountability


Winning with Accountability, though not one of the big well known books in industry, has a lot to offer, while QBQ! had a lot of bluster.


This month’s discussion theme for my mentorship group is accountability. At the beginning of the month, I happened to hear the Entreleadership podcast episode where Chris Hogan and his guest kicked off their “Leaders are Readers” month with a discussion of QBQ! The Question Behind the Question. They could not have given it a more ringing endorsement, including noting that Dave Ramsey notes it as a favorite and requires people who work for him to read it. I have a lot of respect for Dave Ramsey and for Chris Hogan. I’ve been listening to the Entreleadership podcast for about a year now and they always have something to think about, something to chew on.

However, this book really fell flat for me. It touts itself as a path towards accountability, but it’s really a viewpoint of being pro-active in difficult situations. Rather than “whining”, John G. Miller suggests you ask questions like, “What can I do here?” Personally, I don’t think every bad situation can be cleared up by personal action–sometimes the universe is just messing you over and you don’t have control over it at the moment. You can try not to stress out, but you may need to be productive elsewhere until the storm blows over. I like the idea of trying to take control, but I didn’t need a book, even one as brief as 116 pages with lots of white space, to get me there.

Here are the takeaways: Begin questions with “what” or “how”, contain an “I”, and focus on an action. Don’t try to change people, and don’t waste energy worrying about things you can’t fix, or asking, “why”, “when”, or “who” questions. At its core, this is a book prompting the reader to be more empowered to take action and not freak out about when things aren’t going your way.

Unlike QBQ!, Winning with Accountability had no great pedigree of recommendation, but it is a fine, brief read (just 92 pages). If you are familiar with SMART goals, then you’ll find Henry J. Evans‘s model a slight expansion on a proven methodology. But in addition to SMART(ER) tasks, Evans posits this idea, which I think is sorely lacking in a lot of literature (and audio and video) about accountability: not only are the directs accountable to the leader, but the leader is accountable to her directs. Evans talks about building a culture of accountability, which begins with the individual and can be seeded by the individual. Contrast Miller’s QBQs, where one seems to be the lone agent in a big, weird world. I like Evans, because he discusses the network effect of accountability. It is within networks that one can have the biggest impact.

Evans has a 4-part model: Requests must be clear, time-specific, have a single owner, and are communicated to others. It’s within the clarity section that he discusses SMARTER goals: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Results-Oriented, Trackable, Ethical, and Recorded. The “ethical” part goes without saying for me, but Evans deals with a broad audience.

Two other bits I liked. Evans talks about “front-loading” goals with making sure the expectations and measures of success are communicated. He suggests having the listening reflect back in their own language what the request is. I know from my days in teaching that this is a strong method of checking understanding. The second thing I really liked is that Evans talks about timelines, not deadlines. Timelines connote progress, whereas deadline connote completion. While completion is important, you can build a relationship by following up on timelines as the work does or does not get down.


What are you favorite books on Accountability? Leave your tips in the comments.

Books in this post:

You Get What You Reward

Summary:  When you reward (or require) people to write information available elsewhere, they will almost always use the other other information as a crutch. If that means “adding” to the source, you will get lots of bad and repeated information, creating a bad experience for everyone.

Read: In January, I wrote about the bad results you get when you pay volunteers for content. I mentioned in that post that there were support techs paid by the post to populate a support community. The result was that they ended up using existing knowledge base posts in order to bolster their “productivity”.

I was at a conference last month talking with a writer from a very large software as a service company. Their support techs are required to create knowledge base articles based on their support calls. Theoretically, if they add to the support documentation, customers will search the docs first before they call. Over time, the net effect should be less calls. However, the result is that support techs end up cribbing the professionally written knowledge base articles, changing them just enough so that they are distinct. The actual net effect is more cruft in the knowledge base due to repeated information.

Some customers will always want to call. Some customers will always search first. Assuming these are the same people is a detriment to your support organization.

Combine Filters with Google Analytics Magic Script

Summary: Combine filters in the Google Analytics Magic Script with a semicolon (;).

Read: I’ve been meaning to do a post about using the wonderful “magic” script by Nick Mihailovski. the script is a way of using Google Docs to create much more powerful inquiries than the Analytics dashboard can give you. Nick has a good tutorial up (read it here, with video), but google has changed the steps slightly so that you can’t just blindly follow the instructions.

One helpful tip–and it’s something I always have to remember–is that when you search the script gallery, search for “Google Automation” (capital G, capital A) to find the script. Its formal name is “Google Analytics Report Automation (magic)”.

The script allows you to fill out a few fields to create very large sets of data. Someone asked me yesterday, though, for referrals from google for a particular set of page hits. That meant I needed to not only limit the ga:pagePath dimension (the URL), but also the ga:fullReferrer (where they came from). I fumbled through some searching, found some broken links in a message board–from Nick himself, no less!– but eventually came upon this tip:

You can combine filters with a semicolon. This takes the place of the boolean AND. You can employ the boolean OR by using a comma (,).


Book Club: January 2014

Summary: I read Sway and Get Lucky in January; I recommend both for different reasons.

Read: As 2013 came to a close, I wanted to reflect on what books I had read over the year to see how my thinking had been influenced and changed. I was really upset that I didn’t have a reading list. Here’s my first stab at a list for 2014.


As January opened, I wrapped up reading Sway by Ori and Rom Brafman. Its subtitle is, “The irresistible pull of irrational behavior.” I am constantly looking for connections in ideas–an effect of pairing my Ideation and Connection strenghts–and I found this book readily paired with Mistakes Were Made (But Not by Me) by Carol Tavris and Elliot Aronson. (That one’s subtitle is, “Why we justify foolish beliefs, bad decisions, and hurtful acts.”) I’d read Mistakes a year ago when it was the number one recommendation of a new manager.

But, where Mistakes discussion the institutionalized effects of making bad decisions and the inability to retreat or fix them, Sway takes a more anthropological view, seeing irrational behavior endemic to the species of humans.

The larger question, though, is do either offer solace or ways of overcoming this shortcoming, this glitch in the human machine? Sway offers the idea of looking at the long view, of recognizing that we may be biased and be open to the possibility that we are wrong. As Mistakes is more an institutional book, it’s salve is to own up when we realize that we have been biased or made a mistake. (Meh.)

I think part of the reason why I enjoyed Sway so much was not just that it was entertaining written, but that it broadened the ideas in Mistakes. But, if we are being honest, both are playing in the backlot of Robert Cialdini’s Influence. Not enough can be said about that book, which is the foundational book of writings on the folly of human “rationality”.

Get Lucky

I finished the month with Get Lucky: How to Put Planned Serendipity to Work for You and Your Business by Thor Muller and Lane Becker. Who wouldn’t like more happy chance accidents–or in the authors’ wording, serendipity–in their life? Muller and Becker claim that by following their eight steps, one can bring much more of it into one’s life. Actually, it’s more serendipity into one’s business’s life. I’ll start on the personal scale.

The eight steps or skills, as they call them, might be a bit terrifying for writers. We types tend to be more introverted, where Muller and Becker say that one much “get on out there” (as the little league coach used to say) and share our ideas. The nice ideas that underlay Get Lucky–and they back it up with biographical stories and a bit of scientific research–is that when we share our passions and ideas, there are other people who will (eventually) find them and say, “This is exactly what I was looking for!” And, too, we can find the exact things we are looking for.

The eight skills are 1) Motion, 2) Preparation, 3) Divergence, 4) Commitment, 5) Activation, 6) Connection, 7) Permeability, and 8) Attraction. The general theme being to find what is interesting to you, share your ideas about it, and be open to what comes from the crowd you share with. The groundbreaking idea here is the admonishment to do this on a business level. And, to be frank, there is a certain advertisement angle for their company Get Satisfaction, of which they are two founders.

If you’d like a preview of the ideas, check out Muller and Becker’s TEDxOxbridge talk from 2011, where they outline 4 of the skills that would eventually flush out Get Lucky. (The book would be published a year later.)

Don’t Pay Volunteers for Content (part 2)

Summary: Carrot and stick incentives actually disincentivize volunteers from doing their best, most creative work, no matter the reward. Carrots only reward the minimum effort it takes to get them,

Read: In part one, I talked about how Digital Ocean’s promise to pay $50 for tutorials ends up netting five to eight dollars an hour to the writer. Now, in part two, I talk about a separate, but related problem: Reward–even to those already internally motivated to do good work–is a corrupting influence that drives down quality and creativity. Even worse, it does not matter what the reward is; money, game-like status points, and even the empty chance of winning money all shut down our desires to do good work. Continue reading