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I recently found myself enjoying a rather long walk around town. So long in fact, that it lasted about three hours. I live in San Francisco and if you know anything about “The City,” then you know a walk around town that lasts three hours rivals any decent hike in the wilderness.

Anyway, on my way home, I stopped in at a local bakery/deli around the corner from where I live and picked up a sandwich. As I always do, I snapped a photo of the final product, posted it on Instagram with the caption “A three-hour hike deserves a $10 sandwich – and this one was damn good.” It was about 15 or 20 minutes later when one of my followers posted a question asking where this sandwich was from. I not only replied with the name of the establishment, but its location, too.

Wait a minute – did I just provide uncompensated advertising through my Instagram account?

Yes. Yes, I had, and it wasn’t the first time, either. It seems most merchants, both national chains and mom & pop store alike, have stumbled upon an accidental way to receive free advertising, via their customers Instagram, Facebook, Pintrest, Twitter, and Tumblr pages, as well as from other social media outlets. However, in the ever-evolving world of social media, it seems someone has come up with the next great internet idea that seeks to level the playing field for people like me, who take pictures of the clothes we buy and the restaurant food we order then hash-tag and post it online for the world to see.

Orange County-based (pronounced “Squeaky”), is looking to position itself as the hot new social media destination. So what’s “Sqeeqee” you ask? Basically, has come up with a platform that creates the possibility for people to monetize those online picture posts and social interactions. In an interview posted on, CEO and Sqeeqee founder Jenny Ta explained

“The top social networking sites are making billions of dollars in advertising revenues while users typically make little or nothing. We have created our own market niche by putting our users into the driver’s seat. We believe higher payouts to users will eventually result in even higher revenues. By adding truly attractive opportunities to convert our users’ social medial time into income, we are developing a marketing concept other social media websites have yet to fully explore.”

Wow, I like it. In fact, I like it a lot.




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