If you're a Twitter user, you undoubtedly love it. If you're not, you probably either hate it, or find it confusing. Today Twitter launches Moments in a bid to make itself more appealing to beginners by helping to provide a gentle step up into the crazy world of tweets, and by bringing context to timelines.
Times they are a-changing at Twitter with Jack Dorsey now the fulltime CEO, and the prospect of curated content from reputable sources could be what is needed to take things to the next level. Part of the problem with Twitter is the sheer volume of content that is out there -- and it is generated very quickly; for newbies, it can be completely overwhelming. Moments is an attempt to cut through the crap and present news and stories in a meaningful and accessible way.
Facebook has come under heavy criticism for its real names (or 'authentic identities' as they are known to the social network) policy. Over the last year, all manner of rights groups and advocates have tried to convince Facebook to allow users to drop their real name in favor of a pseudonym if they want.
Now the Electronic Frontier Foundation is part of the 74-member strong Nameless Coalition and has written to Facebook demanding a rethink on the ground of safety, privacy, and equality. This is far from being the first time Facebook has been called on to allow the use of 'fake names', and the latest letter is signed by LGBT groups, freedom advocates, privacy supporters, and feminist organizations.
He has been interim CEO for some time now, but today Jack Dorsey has been officially appointed as CEO of Twitter. Three months after Dick Costolo stepped down from the role, Dorsey is now the head of not only Square, but also Twitter, bringing to an end months of rumor and speculation.
As one of the founders of the company, Dorsey has an unrivalled knowledge of where Twitter comes from, what is at its heart, and where it should be heading. The board of Twitter is due for an overhaul, and one of the first announcements is the appointment of Adam Bain as COO, but there are almost certainly more exciting announcements on the horizon.
Facebook today announced a series of updates to user profiles on mobile devices, and one of the first candidates for a revamp is the humble profile picture. There are a couple of interesting options to play with, including temporary profile pictures that change after a certain number of days.
This is an idea that was born from the popularity of banners which Facebook users added to their profile pictures to show support for a particular cause. Also in the pipeline are profile videos, which Facebook says will "add a new dimension to your profile". Forget static images, a looping video clip is now an option. But the profile updates don’t end there -- and, oddly, iPhone users are first in line to try out the new goodies.
Driven as it is by users, it is perhaps little surprise that Facebook is home to a lot of nonsense. Nothing wrong with this, but it becomes more of an issue when nonsense is disguised as something meaningful and is shared by people left, right, and center. Hoax copyright warnings spreading via statuses is a perennial problem, and there are a couple of prime examples doing the rounds at the moment.
You've probably seen at least one of them before, but the pair seem to be cropping up a great deal this time around. Should you see your friends posting 'helpful' advice about paying to make your Facebook profile private, or how to assert your copyright so Facebook can’t use your images, just remember that they are rubbish. Facebook seems to find it funny, though, and has responded in a slightly humorous fashion.
The Internet.org project from Facebook has not been without controversy. Created with the aim of getting everyone in the world online, the program has been widely criticized and many partners pulled out. Now a rebranding has been unveiled for the mobile app and website.
With the launch of the Internet.org Platform, Facebook has taken the opportunity to rename the portal through which people can access a range of free services. Changing the name to Free Basics by Facebook is described as a way "to better distinguish the Internet.org initiative from the programs and services we’re providing", but it's hard not to think that it is also an attempt to move away from the controversy of Internet.org, and it comes ahead of serious push into India.
Heard of Facebook Notes? No? It's something that has been around for a while, and provides away to write longer posts, but for some reason it has been largely ignored by Facebook users. The latest update could mean that's about to change.
Seemingly looking to take on the likes of Medium and Blogger, Facebook Notes has been treated to a facelift that makes posts more attractive and introduces new customization options. While Notes used to be (understandably, to some extent) all about the text, now graphics and formatting are given greater prominence.
Photo sharing app Instagram has reached another milestone earlier this week, 400 million active monthly users.
That is 100 million more since the last update a few months ago, when Instagram surpassed Twitter. In the same time, Twitter has managed to add 25 million new users. The photo sharing app is growing at a faster rate than Facebook, but slower than Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp.
Visit just about any website and you’re pretty much guaranteed to see a Twitter button of some sort. Just as here at BetaNews, you’ll be offered the chance to follow the author of the article you’re reading (or the site’s Twitter feed), as well as being given the opportunity to tweet about the page you’re looking at.
Now this familiar page furniture is about to get a new look. From next month, a new set of buttons is rolling out with a fresh, flat, modern look. It’s a redesign that will please minimalists, but there are important API changes coming that will annoy some developers.
Belgian Privacy Commission (BPC) said during a court hearing earlier this week that Facebook is spying on its users in Europe. The American social media company is allegedly violating privacy laws, monitors information of non-users and logged-out users, all for the purpose of placing ads, IB Times just wrote in a report.
Government snooping into online activity is something that has long appalled privacy groups around the world. In something of a victory for those concerned about privacy and government meddling, the US Senate has killed plans that would have required social networks to tell the government about any users talking about terrorism-related topics.
The change of heart is a win not only for social network users, but also the social networks themselves who will no longer be required to police content more than they already do. The policy had been criticized for being vague, placing undue pressure on companies, and limiting freedom of speech.
Professional social networking site LinkedIn has proven to be a valuable business tool, bringing together professionals from all over the world.
But few corporations grasp the security risk injudicious use of LinkedIn represents. The main problem is not with the LinkedIn website’s own digital security but with a widespread corporate ignorance of the way the organized criminal gangs (OCGs) who make billions, sometimes tens of billions, of dollars from cyber crime.
You've probably heard talk recently of Facebook adding a Dislike button or an 'empathize' button. While this is certainly something that has been in the news, it is not yet a reality -- and it has created a great opportunity for scammers to cash in on people's impatience.
We don’t get know exactly what form the Dislike button will take, or when it will appear, but there are now several scams in operation that lure in victims with the promise of instant access to the yet-to-be-released feature. A variety of techniques are employed by scammers to encourage victim to "Download the official DISLIKE button now". It is, of course, a fake, and there are a number of things to look out for.
We all know that Facebook has a lot of information about us, but what exactly can it learn from all that data?
Aside from the most obvious -- the things you give it, such as gender, date of birth, place of living, education, work, your favorite sports clubs, music and movies -- it can also conclude a lot of things on its own.
There is no connection between levels of education and whether or not someone uses social media because, as it turns out, everyone uses social media.
However, there is a correlation between a person’s education, income and gender and which social media it uses. According to a fairly extensive research paper by the Business Insider, women are more likely to use Pinterest, while men are more likely to use Twitter.