Articles about Social Web

YouTube's automatic subtitling 'makes absolutely no sense'

YouTube's automatic subtitling 'makes absolutely no sense'

For the deaf and hard-of-hearing, subtitles are essential. Blu-rays, DVDs and TV shows usually feature subtitling as an option, and it's also something that crops up on streaming media such as YouTube videos. The Google-owned video site attempts to automatically add subtitles to videos, but the feature leaves a great deal to be desired.

You may have noticed this for yourself but if not, vlogger Rikki Poynter would like to bring it to your attention. Rikki, who is hard-of-hearing, complains that YouTube's subtitling is often "completely nonsensical". YouTube acknowledges that it has a long way to go.

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Facebook will urge UK users to register to vote

Facebook will urge UK users to register to vote

If you're in the UK, your Facebook feed might look slightly different tomorrow (Thursday). In addition to the usual bitching and moaning, cat videos, and lists of eight things you didn’t know about your friends, you may well also see a reminder to register to vote in May's General Election.

Why? Well Thursday 5 February is the excitingly named National Voter Registration Day, and the Electoral Commission has teamed up with Facebook to try to up voter numbers. The idea is riding the wave of interest in politics that swelled around the Scottish referendum on independence, and it is hoped that more young people will be encouraged to register in time to cast their vote at the ballot box.

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British army's 77th Brigade to wage psychological war on Facebook

British army's 77th Brigade to wage psychological war on Facebook

The British army is creating a new battalion of online soldiers in the form of the 77th Brigade. Hundreds of recruits will make up the division and will engage in "non-lethal warfare" on Mark Zuckerberg's social network from April.

The 77th Brigade will engage in psyops (psychological operations) to try to influence the opinions of civilians in certain parts of the world, as well looking to change the behavior of those engaged in various forms of warfare. The activities of groups such as ISIS (Islamic State) have shown the importance of the internet in general, but social networks in particular, to spreading ideas, messages and propaganda, and this is what the army is looking to manage.

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Google faces a Sisyphean task to remove terrorist content from YouTube

Google faces a Sisyphean task to remove terrorist content from YouTube

Too much content is uploaded to YouTube for Google to be able to effectively police users' videos. This is what the search giant said in response to calls for more to be done to counter terrorism-related content on the video network.

Online censorship versus the right to freedom of speech is a battle that has waged online for some time now. Some parts of the world are more prone to censorship than others, and it's an argument that bubbles up from time to time. The debate usually centers around the moral rights and wrongs of censoring content, but the issue of practicality occasionally rears its head as well.

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Stop jumping to conclusions! Lizard Squad didn't take down Facebook

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Despite many reports to the contrary, there is nothing to suggest that downtime experienced by Facebook, Instagram and Tinder was anything to do with Lizard Squad. Earlier today, the three services were inaccessible for a short while and Lizard Squad took to Twitter to announce the outages.

The tweet, which read "Facebook, Instagram, Tinder, AIM, Hipchat #offline #LizardSquad" was taken as an admission of guilt and reported as such by many, many websites. Even when Facebook announced that the downtime came as a result of a system change by Facebook, site after site continued to report that Lizard Squad was to blame.

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Facebook is weak and utterly wrong to censor 'offensive' pages in Turkey

Facebook is weak and utterly wrong to censor 'offensive' pages in Turkey

Mark Zuckerberg is a hypocrite. For all of his spiel about being a proponent of free speech, ultimately he is a man all too willing to bow to the demands of a country. Turkey took umbrage at the existence of pages that insulted or offended the Prophet Mohammad and threatened to completely ban Facebook in the country if they were not blocked.

Facebook has now decided to comply with the Turkish demands. Zuckerberg would have us believe that "we never let one country or group of people dictate what people can share across the world", but this is clearly not the case when it comes to upsetting the Islamic faith. This latest move is a political one and shows a lack of strength and conviction.

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Facebook Lite officially available for low-end Android devices

Facebook Lite Android

Facebook is not exactly the lightest mobile app around. In fact, it is one of the worst offenders, no matter if we are talking about Android or iOS. It uses plenty of resources, both in terms of data and processing power. We may have gotten used to it by now, but these are major pain points in developing and emerging markets, where more and more potential users are going online for the first time.

There, lots of consumers are rocking low-spec Android devices and small cellular data plans, and the standard Facebook flavor is not a great match for them. So, the social network has finally released a lighter version of its Android app, called Facebook Lite, which promises to address those shortcomings. Let's take a look at it.

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Turkey to Facebook: ban pages that insult the Prophet Mohammad or we'll block you

Turkey to Facebook: ban pages that insult the Prophet Mohammad or we'll block you

Over the weekend a court in Turkey told Facebook to block several pages that had been deemed to insult the Prophet Mohammad. A court order was delivered to the social network with the threat that if Facebook failed to comply, the site would be completely blocked in Turkey.

Turkey's banging of the religious insults drum comes just weeks after satirical French magazine Charlie Hebdo was targeted for featuring a cartoon that mocked the prophet. At the time Mark Zuckerberg spoke out in support of the #JeSuisCharlie campaign that followed the tragedy, saying that Facebook had previously refused to ban content about the prophet, but it's not clear whether Turkey's threat could make things different this time.

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Tweet translations come (back) to Twitter thanks to Microsoft Bing

Tweet translations come (back) to Twitter thanks to Microsoft Bing

After introducing the "while you were away" feature to help ensure you don’t miss out on tweets because of, you know, getting away from Twitter from time to time, there's now another feature that will help you to get more from the microblogging site. By teaming up with Bing, Twitter is now able to provide on-the-fly translations for tweets in foreign languages.

This is not an entirely new feature; Twitter has brought a translation to the web and mobile version of its service before, but it disappeared. Now the feature is back. It works in the iOS and Android apps as well as in Tweetdeck and on the Twitter website.

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The social media threats to watch for in 2015

Social media threats

The increased popularity of social media, for business as well as personal use, has opened up a new avenue of attack for cyber criminals.

Risk management company ZeroFOX has produced a list of the top social media attacks to look out for this year.

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Facebook aims to wipe fake news stories from your newsfeed

Facebook aims to wipe fake news stories from your newsfeed

The queen is dead, boys! President Obama has announced he's going to step down! You can rewrite Facebook's privacy policy to your liking! Sick of seeing fake news stories cluttering up your Facebook newsfeed, getting in the way of content you actually want to see? Facebook feels your pain and is taking steps to cut back on the hoaxes.

Stop me if you think that you've heard this one before, but not everything that appears online is one hundred percent true. In fact, there's a huge amount of content that is twaddle, pish, balderdash -- and lots of people fall for it. Facebook is introducing a new feature that lets you report a story as being fake, and if enough other people do the same, the power of crowd sourcing means the story will be culled.

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Facebook at Work unleashed to cater for the office

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For many employers, Facebook is the scourge of the work place -- but this could be set to change with the launch of Facebook at Work. Designed with enterprise users in mind, Facebook at Work is initially going to be made available to a handful of companies and will allow them to create their own social networks.

Sysadmins may have spent endless hours putting blockades in place to prevent workers from wiling away endless hours on Mark Zuckerberg's social network but now the goalposts have been moved. Getting off to a good start, Facebook at Work is not subject to the user tracking associated with regular Facebook, and ads simply do not exist (for now, at least). So what's it all about?

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Facebook should be applauded for not blocking violent videos

Facebook should be applauded for not blocking violent videos

There's a lot of crazy content out there. Social networks fill up with funny footage, music videos, informative clips, and the downright stupid. As with movies, there's also a good deal of graphic content out there too, and some of it finds its way onto Facebook.

In fact, this is one of the complaints that Facebook constantly has to deal with. When people aren’t taking issue with the social network's privacy policy (and trying to make their own amendments to it) there are frequent objections to violent, gory or otherwise offensive videos. Rather than issuing an outright ban and censoring such content, Facebook has adopted a far more sensible, measured approach.

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More elders embrace Facebook, adult usage remains consistent

Facebook apologizes for miserable, automated Year In Review posts

The latest research indicates that Facebook is maintaining strong membership figures despite the rise of rival social networks such as Twitter and LinkedIn.

A study of 1,597 adult Internet users by the Pew Research Centre found that 71 percent were using Facebook, the same amount as in 2013.

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Can an 'anonymous' social network using Facebook login ever be trusted?

Can an 'anonymous' social network using Facebook login ever be trusted?

Despite its unwavering popularity, Facebook continually finds itself under fire for one thing or another. We've had debate about the social network's real names policy, a raft of people thinking they can rewrite the rules, advertising woes, and constant complaints when changes are made to how timelines operate. But one thing crops up time and time again -- people's desire for privacy.

This may seem rather at odds with use of a social network (there's a clue in the name there), but a new contender thinks it has the answer. Social X describes itself as a social platform where users can set up numerous identities, including an anonymous one. There's one problem -- Facebook credentials are used to sign into Social X, and this is undeniably going to be a massive stumbling block.

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