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Sunday Social Roundup

  1. Snapchat is starting to offer brands advertising opportunities. I think it’s worth an exploration but Snapchat’s primary focus should be on acquiring new users. Facebook and Twitter didn’t introduce ads until a few years in. However, given that 500 million snaps are sent per day I’m sure the server costs are still to eat away at Snapchat’s investor dollars.

  2. SoundCloud finally caved in to record label demands to license the tracks on its platform. But I think this could be a boon for SoundCloud. The revenue generated through advertising will be shared amongst SoundCloud’s community of creators. SoundCloud is my music platform of choice. Not iTunes, Rdio, Beats, nor Spotify. SoundCloud just has better music and it works like Twitter, which wanted to buy it a couple months ago.

  3. Atlantic Media is building a social media platform that restricts users to share only once per day. Sharing once per day is probably enough anyway, as it’ll force users to focus on quality rather than quantity. Despite the constriction, most people still won’t have to the courage to share.

  4. Elan Morgan quit liking posts on Facebook for 2 weeks and now gets more diverse content in his newsfeed, like Twitter. When I liked the Buzzfeed page a couple weeks ago Facebook basically inundated my feed with Buzzfeed articles forcing me to like. Needless to say, I unfollowed Buzzfeed after a few days. Facebook’s algorithm doesn’t need to show every post like Twitter.

  5. Millennials are the last generation to understand what the old analog world is like. Meanwhile, Generation Z will have no context whatsoever having grown up with the Internet and touch screens. Are pens and paper still useful?

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Sunday Social Roundup

  1.  YouTube stars are the new Hollywood.  They’ve got millions of subscribers and crying fans.  All because these YouTubers decided to record themselves having fun or teaching what they love.  It’s a DIY world.  

  2.  All social networks seem to be unbundling their apps to do niche things. Foursquare spun off check-ins in its new Swarm app.  LinkedIn has an app dedicated to job search.  Facebook just forced all it’s users this week to download the Messenger app.  I’m not so sure this is a winning strategy.  

  3.  Posit: Getting replaced by ‘Facebook Places’ in Instagram’s geo-tag was the beginning of the end for Foursquare.  There’s just no way Foursquare can last, unless it sells all that valuable check-in data to another company.  

  4. Pinterest launched a direct messenger tool in its platform.  It’s less about chat than it is about speaking through aspirational images.  It’s already much better than Twitter’s DM service.

    + Here’s a graph showing that Internet users prefer to share privately much more than publicly. Vehicles for sharing real life outperform our publicly edited shared lives. Dark social wins.

  5.  Social media is not about shopping just yet. Would you like to buy something while socializing in a bar?  Nonetheless, Twitter seems to think it can make social shopping happen.

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Sunday Social Roundup

  1. As Tweets create more noise than value, a curated Twitter feed a la Facebook might not be that bad of an idea after all. It also enables Twitter to build in ads in between tweets which of course is good for profits but bad for the user experience.

  2. With the tablet market shrinking, more developers are building apps for the computer desktop to ensure their apps run across platforms seamlessly. Some of my favorite apps (e.g. Day One, Evernote) are platform agnostic which is hugely convenient for syncing your notes and keeping everything organized when you’re format shifting.

  3. Social media has made people write more and voice an opinion, whereas before these habits lay inactive in the layers of one’s own mind. For starters, my Facebook feed is floating with friends’ opinions about Israel/Palestine.

  4. Remember when acquiring new fans on Facebook was the priority? Now it’s all about delivering ads at the right time.

  5. It turns out that being ‘verified’ on social platforms gets you nothing more than maybe an enhanced search result. The CEO of Twitter doesn’t even have a verified account. What’s celebrity status mean in the first place?

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FaceTime and the Perils of Public Discourse

The theme of mobile open dialogue and Internet browsing is trending. I partly blame FaceTime and mobile video conversation for this emergence.

As a daily train commuter, I see a lot of the ways people deal with technology. And by far the most invasive development of them all is FaceTime.

FaceTime allows iPhone users to chat face to face on their mobile devices. While this is fantastic for home and work conversations, bringing family and colleagues into your space, it’s typically a nuisance for everyone else if used in public.

FaceTime is training users that it’s ok to broadcast live video out loud, including YouTube. Yesterday, one man on my train was blasting a movie preview on YouTube. The guy behind him was talking to his wife on FaceTime about dinner plans. Thankfully someone had the courage tell them both to quiet down.

If you’re going to chat, watch online videos and movies or listen to music, the proper etiquette is to use headphones. We already overhear enough banter as it is; we certainly don’t need to know what you’re doing tonight or what movie you’ll illegally BitTorrent next.

Unfortunately, I think technology continues to evolve like a Google Hangout where everyone gets included on the conversation by default. Before, we were just spying on each other. Now we can’t figure out a away to get away from each other.

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Sunday Social Roundup

Below are some of the more interesting and innovative social media developments from this week.

  1. Facebook released a new app for approved celebrities/influencers. The best part about it is that it doesn’t have ads. Why can’t Facebook offer its regular users an as-free option? I’d pay $1/year for a clean feed.

  2. Another week, another tech story on how to go on a digital diet and escape social networks. Here’s a little post I wrote in 2013 about the fallacy of escaping social networks.

  3. The statistics show that social networkers are actually consuming long-form content despite scanning short-form snacks. In other words, nothing has really changed. You engage longer with content you actually like.

  4. Private, ephemeral sharing is the new public. Even analog photobooths are getting in on the new obsession with disappearing content.  The Eraser does just that. It takes your pic and quickly erases it.

  5. Customers are staying longer in restaurants because they’re wasting time on their Smartphones. That’s good news for restaurants that need the crowds but bad news for restaurants that need you to get in and out.

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Should Facebook Manipulate Users?

The manipulation of emotion is no small thing. An estimated 60 percent of suicides are preceded by a mood disorder. Even mild depression has been shown to increase the risk of heart failure by 5 percent; moderate to severe depression increases it by 40 percent.

Facebook is playing with our emotions. First, it turned us into ads. Then, it turned us into its lab rats.