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  • Gerrit Eicker 18:12 on 16. December 2011 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , Sharing, , , , , , , , , ,   

    SOPA Nightmare 

    Petri on Judiciary Committee’s SOPA hearings: I just want the nightmare to be over; http://eicker.at/SOPAnightmare

     
    • Gerrit Eicker 18:12 on 16. December 2011 Permalink | Reply

      WP, Petri: “Last night I had a horrifying dream that a group of well-intentioned middle-aged people who could not distinguish between a domain name and an IP address were trying to regulate the Internet. Then I woke up and the Judiciary Committee’s SOPA hearings were on. … [T]his is like a group of well-intentioned amateurs getting together to perform heart surgery on a patient incapable of moving. … This is terrifying to watch. It would be amusing – there’s nothing like people who did not grow up with the Internet attempting to ask questions about technology very slowly and stumbling over words like ‘server’ and ‘service’ when you want an easy laugh. Except that this time, the joke’s on us. … This afternoon, the hearings continue, with even more amendments. But at the rate it’s going, it looks likely that SOPA will make it to the floor. – I just want the nightmare to be over.

      VB: “A group of influential and iconic tech entrepreneurs have written an open letter of opposition to the recently proposed Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA), which has been published as a paid advertisement in several major U.S. newspapers today. … The opposition letter warns of the dangers that SOPA would bring to business and innovation. It’s signed by Google co-founder Sergey Brin, Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey, Netscape co-founder and prominent investor Marc Andreessen, PayPal and Tesla founder Elon Musk and several others. … In addition to those top tech executives, several companies and organizations have publicly come out against SOPA. Open-source online encyclopedia Wikipedia is even toying with the idea of staging a blackout in protest of the proposed law.

      An Open Letter to Washington: “We’ve all had the good fortune to found Internet companies and nonprofits in a regulatory climate that promotes entrepreneurship, innovation, the creation of content and free expression online. – However we’re worried that the Protect IP Act and the Stop Online Piracy Act – which started out as well-meaning efforts to control piracy online – will undermine that framework. – These two pieces of legislation threaten to: Require web services, like the ones we helped found, to monitor what users link to, or upload. This would have a chilling effect on innovation; – Deny website owners the right to due process of law; – Give the U.S. Government the power to censor the web using techniques similar to those used by China, Malaysia and Iran; and – Undermine security online by changing the basic structure of the Internet. – We urge Congress to think hard before changing the regulation that underpins the Internet. Let’s not deny the next generation of entrepreneurs and founders the same opportunities that we all had.” … [Signed by] Marc Andreessen (Netscape and Andreessen Horowitz), Sergey Brin (Google), Jack Dorsey (Twitter and Square), Caterina Fake (Flickr and Hunch), David Filo (Yahoo!), Reid Hoffman (LinkedIn), Arianna Huffington (The Huffington Post), Chad Hurley (YouTube), Brewster Kahle (Internet Archive and Alexa Internet), Elon Musk (PayPal), Craig Newmark (craigslist), Pierre Omidyar (eBay), Biz Stone (Obvious and Twitter), Jimmy Wales (Wikipedia and Wikimedia Foundation), Evan Williams (Blogger and Twitter), Jerry Yang (Yahoo!)

      NYT: “For years, pirated movies, television shows and music have been on the Internet. … Now, however, two bills, broadly supported on both sides of the political aisle, aim to cut off the oxygen for foreign pirate sites by taking aim at American search engines like Google and Yahoo, payment processors like PayPal and ad servers that allow the pirates to function. – Naturally the howls of protest have been loud and lavishly financed, not only from Silicon Valley companies but also from public-interest groups, free-speech advocates and even venture capital investors. They argue – in TV and newspaper ads – that the bills are so broad and heavy-handed that they threaten to close Web sites and broadband service providers and stifle free speech, while setting a bad example of American censorship. – Google itself has hired at least 15 lobbying firms to fight the bills; Mozilla has included on its Firefox browser home page a link to a petition with the warning, ‘Congress is trying to censor the Internet.’ A House committee plans to take up one of the bills, the Stop Online Piracy Act, on Thursday. … Many in the Internet world, however, see ominous aspects even in the revision. ‘There are some provisions that have improved,’ said Markham Erickson, executive director of NetCoalition, a group of technology companies that includes Facebook, LinkedIn and eBay. – ‘Unfortunately,’ Mr. Erickson said, ‘the amendment also creates new problems in other places and fails to correct some of the original concerns we have raised since the start of the debate.’ … A third alternative emerged last week, as Representative Darrell Issa, a California Republican, and Senator Ron Wyden, an Oregon Democrat who has been blocking the Senate bill from getting to the floor, introduced a new proposal that would make the United States International Trade Commission the arbiter for Internet disputes over copyrighted material. ‘Butchering the Internet,’ Mr. Issa said, ‘is not a way forward for Americirca.’

      TLF: “On Thursday, the House Judiciary Committee is slated to take up the misleadingly named Stop Online Piracy Act, an Internet censorship bill that will do little to actually stop piracy. In response to an outpouring of opposition from cybersecurity professionals, First Amendment scholars, technology entrepreneurs, and ordinary Internet users, the bill’s sponsors have cooked up an amended version that trims or softens a few of the most egregious provisions of the original proposal, bringing it closer to its Senate counterpart, Protect-IP. But the fundamental problem with SOPA has never been these details; it’s the core idea. The core idea is still to create an Internet blacklist, which means everything I say in this video still holds true. Let’s review the main changes. … These changes are somewhat heartening insofar as they evince some legislative interest in addressing the legitimate concerns that have been raised thus far. But the problem with SOPA and Protect IP isn’t that they need to be tweaked in order to get the details of an Internet censorship system right. There is no ‘right’ way to do Internet censorship, and the best version of a bad idea remains a bad idea.

      WMF: “How SOPA will hurt the free web and Wikipedia – Wikipedia arguably falls under the definition of an ‘Internet search engine,’ and, for that reason, a federal prosecutor could obtain a court order mandating that the Wikimedia Foundation remove links to specified ‘foreign infringing sites’ or face at least contempt of court sanctions. The definition of “foreign infringing sites” is broad and could well include legitimate sites that host mostly legal content, yet have other purported infringing content on their sites. Again, many international sites may decide not to defend because of the heavy price tag, allowing an unchallenged block by the government. The result is that, under court order, Wikimedia would be tasked to review millions upon millions of sourced links, locate the links of the so-called ‘foreign infringing sites,’ and block them from our articles or other projects. It costs donors’ money and staff resources to undertake such a tremendous task, and it must be repeated every time a prosecutor delivers a court order from any federal judge in the United States on any new ‘foreign infringing site.’ Blocking links runs against our culture of open knowledge, especially when surgical solutions to fighting infringing material are available. … In short, though there have been some improvements with the new version, SOPA remains far from acceptable. Its definitions remain too loose, and its structural approach is flawed to the core. It hurts the Internet, taking a wholesale approach to block entire international sites, and this is most troubling for sites in the open knowledge movement who probably have the least ability to defend themselves overseas. The measured and focused approach of the DMCA has been jettisoned. Wikimedia will need to endure significant burdens and expend its resources to comply with conceivably multiple orders, and the bill will deprive our readers of international content, information, and sources.

      Forbes, Tassi: “How SOPA Could Ruin My Life – Hi, my name is Paul, and I’m a small business owner. But my storefront isn’t quite of the traditional variety. Rather, it’s a virtual one, a website I built from scratch, and currently own and operate. … But that might not be the case if the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) passes. My virtual small business, along with many others like it, might be history. – Why is this? Am I a pirate, who feeds my users stolen content every day and deserves to be slain by a new law like this? Not at all, and this is the fundamental problem with SOPA and other prospective laws like it (Protect IP most recently). … The fine print of the law says sites that distribute copyrighted content could be subject to summary censorship, ie Torrent sites and the like. But it also encompasses any sites that LINK to copyrighted content, which is the bomb that blows up any semblance of sense this bill might have had. … So how many of these reports would it take before I lose my advertisers? Get my site on a government blacklist? Twenty? A dozen? Five? As an owner of a YouTube channel and Facebook page, I’ve had content falsely reported for copyright many times. … Stop SOPA, stop Protect IP, stop letting congressmen who don’t even understand the internet to dictate its future. Go here to voice your concerns, and pray that even if you’re not handing them tens of thousands of dollars in campaign cash, that your representatives might actually listen to you.”

    • Gerrit Eicker 09:41 on 17. December 2011 Permalink | Reply

      TC: “What was expected in this contingency was for the committee to resume work whenever the House reconvenes in January. After all, with such controversial and far-reaching legislation, it is better to take one’s time. But no: the committee has announced it will continue markup this coming Wednesday, the 21st of December. … It’s telling how badly the bill’s supporters want this thing to go through that they’re willing to come in right in the middle of the holidays to do work that could easily be done a few weeks from now. We’ll follow up on Wednesday, when the bill is likely to be approved and sent on to the House.”

      SEL: “The delay is to allow more experts to weigh in with opinions and recommendations addressing technical, legal and first amendment issues. – If you’re involved with any type of online marketing, you should learn as much as you can about this proposed legislation, as the implications (mostly negative, unless you’re a large content provider or trademark holder) are huge.”

  • Gerrit Eicker 09:41 on 10. December 2011 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , Contact Management, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , Sharing, , , , , ,   

    Google Plus + Gmail 

    Google adds Plus sharing, circling, contacts to Gmail: late after Search, Apps, Reader, News; http://eicker.at/GooglePlusGmail

    (More …)

     
    • Gerrit Eicker 09:42 on 10. December 2011 Permalink | Reply

      Google: “We want to bring you a great experience across all Google products which, for Gmail and Contacts, means understanding what you care about and delivering it instantly. With that in mind, we’re introducing some new integrations with Google+ that we think will make Gmail and Contacts even better.Now when you open an email from someone on Google+, you can see the most recent post they’ve shared with you on the right-hand side of the conversation. If they’re not in your circles yet, it’s easy to add them straight from Gmail. … If you’ve spent time building your Google+ circles, you can now quickly use them to filter your mail, saving yourself from having to sift through that pile of daily deal emails and newsletters. … If your contacts have a Google profile, their contact entry in Gmail will be updated with the profile information they’ve shared with you, including phone numbers, email addresses and more. … Share effortlessly without leaving your inbox… Now you can share photo attachments with one quick click. The image[s] will be uploaded to your Google+ photos and be viewable only to the circles that you choose to share with.”

      TC: “With an automatically updated address book, Google is leveraging one of its key strengths – the 200 million+ Gmail users – in order to attack Facebook in an area where it struggles. Due to Facebook’s bungling of privacy issues over the years, many mainstream users are wary of inputting their contact information, like their home address and phone number, into Facebook. – Google, however, and especially Gmail and Contacts, are seen as utilities. It may be a bit creepy here too, but the benefits of an automatically updated address book will outweigh the risks for many of Gmail’s heaviest users.

      VB: “One other convenient and cool feature in the new update allows you to directly share a photo attachment from an email to Google+. You used to have to download an image and re-upload it to Google+, but now you will see a Share link next to an image that sends the image to Google+. – The updates will be pushed out over the next few days according to The Official Google Blog, so be on the look out for a new Circles list in your Gmail and all the other nifty new features.

      RWW: “So far, it doesn’t look like my Gmail account has received the updates. At least, it doesn’t have all of them. I do see the latest G+ update from some of my contacts that I follow, but none of the filtering or sharing features have appeared yet. Naturally, if you’re a Google Apps user, you’ll have to wait a bit longer to get the features. Google says that the features in Contacts won’t be available right away but that they’re ‘actively working’ to make them available. – Google has been promising to integrate Google+ more deeply into its other offerings. This seems like a major step in that direction. Is this a good thing, or a bad thing?

  • Gerrit Eicker 07:16 on 26. November 2011 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , Sharing, , , , , , , , ,   

    JIM 2011 

    JIM-Studie 2011 (PDF): In Sachen Datenschutz im Internet wiegen sich Jugendliche in Sicherheit; http://eicker.at/JIM2011

     
    • Gerrit Eicker 07:16 on 26. November 2011 Permalink | Reply

      JIM: “2/3 der Jugendlichen sind der Ansicht, zum Thema Datenschutz insgesamt gut oder sehr gut informiert zu sein: Allerdings spiegelt sich diese subjektiv empfundene Kompetenz nicht bei allen im Handeln wider. Mehr als die Hälfte der Jugendlichen gibt an, die AGBs ihrer Community gar nicht gelesen zu haben. Drei Viertel von denjenigen, die die AGBs zwar gelesen haben, geben zu, diese jedoch nur überflogen zu haben. – Die Möglichkeiten im Internet über Communities, sogenannte soziale Netzwerke, zu kommunizieren und in Kontakt zu bleiben, werden von Jugendlichen wie selbstverständlich genutzt: 4/5 nutzen diese Plattformen zumindest mehrmals pro Woche. Diese Angebote haben eine sehr hohe Alltagsrelevanz für Jugendliche. 57 Prozent der Internetnutzer loggen sich täglich in ihre Community ein, ein Großteil davon sogar mehrmals täglich. Am häufigsten werden Communities genutzt um miteinander zu chatten und Nachrichten zu versenden. Die Auswahl der Jugendlichen bei sozialen Netzwerken beschränkt sich auf wenige Anbieter, an erster Stelle steht hier Facebook, das 72 Prozent der 12- bis 19-jährigen Onliner nutzen. – Sind Jugendliche im Netz unterwegs, hinterlassen sie deutliche Spuren: 65 Prozent haben ein eigenes Foto oder ein Video von sich hochgeladen. 2/5 haben Bilder oder Filme von Freunden oder Familienangehörigen eingestellt. Die Angaben in der Community werden zunehmend vor dem Einblick Fremder geschützt. 79 Prozent haben in ihrem Profil eine Privacy-Option eingestellt, die den Zugriff Dritter einschränkt. – Trotz der vielen persönlichen Daten in sozialen Netzwerken fühlen sich die meisten Jugendlichen mit ihren Daten bei ihrer Community gut aufgehoben: 2/3 haben Vertrauen in den Anbieter ihrer Plattform und betrachten ihre Daten dort als sicher. Vergleicht man die meistbenutzten Angebote Facebook und schülerVZ, fühlen sich die Nutzer von schülerVZ mit ihren Daten dort deutlich sicherer. Insgesamt betrachtet nimmt das Misstrauen gegenüber dem Anbieter bei älteren Jugendlichen zu: Jeder zweite der 18-/19-jährigen Nutzer fühlt sich mit seinen Daten in seiner Community nicht sicher. – Jugendliche Community-Nutzer haben im Schnitt 206 ‘Freunde’, also andere Community-Mitglieder, mit denen sie verlinkt sind. Mit 96 Prozent geben fast alle Community-Nutzer an, die Freunde aus ihrem Profil auch persönlich zu kennen. Die Community spiegelt also nach eigenen Angaben weitgehend die Strukturen der realen Welt wider.

  • Gerrit Eicker 08:39 on 21. November 2011 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , Sharing, , , , , , , , , Unsharing, , , , ,   

    Unsharing 

    Is seamless sharing the end of sharing? Is Facebook malware? Are we afraid to click? Unsharing? http://eicker.at/Unsharing

     
    • Gerrit Eicker 08:39 on 21. November 2011 Permalink | Reply

      Facebook: “Early Results: The Open Graph and Music – Since f8, people have shared their listening activity more than 1.5 billion times with their friends using the music apps that have integrated the Open Graph. As a result, some of our biggest music developers have more than doubled their active users, while earlier-stage startups and services starting with a smaller base have seen anywhere between a 2-10x increase in active users. … Open Graph Best Practices – As you think about how to integrate with the Open Graph in music or any other category, here are some things many of these successful apps have in common: Socially connected users. With a base of users who are able to share your content with their friends from day one, you’re set up to double down on the social experience. – Experiences are social by design. Once you have connected users and have clearly set the expectation up front that they will be in a social experience, you benefit from an increased volume of sharing and virality for your app through News Feed, Ticker and Timeline. – Content being shared has lasting value. Beyond the immediate distribution benefits in channels like Ticker and News Feed, think about the aggregations and patterns your app can represent on Timeline to bring long-term value to a user and their friends who will revisit and reflect on it over the years.”

      CNET: “How Facebook is ruining sharing – I’m afraid to click any links on Facebook these days. … [I]t’s because the slow spread of Facebook’s Open Graph scheme is totally ruining sharing. … If your friends are using an app like The Guardian or The Washington Post’s new Social Reader, you’ll get an intercept asking you to authorize the original site’s app so that you can read the story. And, of course, so that every story you read will start being shared automatically on Facebook, thanks to the magic of Open Graph! … So, publishers and Facebook in particular really, really want you to click those little Add to Facebook buttons so that everything you read, watch, listen to, or buy will get shared to friends who also authorize the app and share to friends who also authorize the app and so on and so on into eternity and hopefully riches. It’s all just part of the plan. … [H]urting sharing is a disaster for a social network. Sharing is the key to social networking. It’s the underlying religion that makes the whole thing work. ‘Viral’ is the magic that every marketing exec is trying to replicate, and Facebook is seriously messing with that formula. Plus, it’s killing the possibility of viral hits by generating such an overwhelming flood of mundane shares. … Sharing and recommendation shouldn’t be passive. It should be conscious, thoughtful, and amusing… I hope publishers will see that conscious sharing is better than passive sharing, and that content delivery is better than app delivery. I also hope that you, sweet social networker, will do your part to keep Facebook pure of trickster links, intercepts, and passive floods of sharing. … Hopefully, if enough of us demonstrate that we don’t want our lives to be Open Graph open books, this will all just go away.

      RWW, Kirkpatrick: “Why Facebook’s Seamless Sharing is Wrong – Facebook recently instituted a new program that makes it easy for 3rd party websites and services to automatically post links about your activity elsewhere back into Facebook and the newsfeeds of your friends. It’s called Seamless Sharing (a.k.a. frictionless sharing) and there’s a big backlash growing about it, reminiscent of the best-known time Facebook tried to do something like this with a program called Beacon. The company has done things like this time and time again. – Critics say that Seamless Sharing is causing over-sharing, violations of privacy, self-censorship with regard to what people read, dilution of value in the Facebook experience and more. CNet’s Molly Wood says it is ruining sharing. I think there’s something more fundamental going on than this – I think this is a violation of the relationship between the web and its users. Facebook is acting like malware. … Violation of reasonable user expectations is a big part of the problem. When you click on a link – you expect to be taken to where the link says it’s going to take you. There’s something about the way that Facebook’s Seamless Sharing is implemented that violates a fundamental contract between web publishers and their users. … ‘I’m afraid to click any links on Facebook these days,’ says CNet’s Molly Wood. That’s one of the world’s top technology journalists talking; even she seems unclear on how the system works and would rather just avoid the entire thing. … I don’t know why the world’s leading designers on social media user experience would have made something as creepy feeling as the way this new seamless sharing was instituted, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s because behind the scenes Facebook is built by arrogant young people living charmed lives and sure they know what’s best for the rest of us. … I think Facebook ought to put a greater emphasis on acting in good faith and helping its users make informed decisions, in line with their reasonable expectations, as the company seeks to experiment with building the future of media.

      TC: “Facebook and the Age of Curation Through Unsharing – Facebook’s Open Graph is ushering in a monumental shift in how we curate what we share. Curation used to mean opting in to sharing. … Facebook’s Open Graph is ushering in a monumental shift in how we curate what we share. Curation used to mean opting in to sharing. … Users still expect to have to actively share something in order for it to reach their audience. That’s no longer true. Instead we’ll need to learn to filter out the noise in reverse, opting out when we don’t want to share instead of opting in when we do. That’s a huge behavioral realignment that will take time and won’t come easy. … Until we have both learned to unshare and have the capability to do so, this will indeed be the dark age of curation. But we have the power to set the norms. Go read a ton of articles using a responsible app, unshare from the Ticker each one you wouldn’t recommend, and explicitly post links to the news feed to those you think are must-reads. If you see low-quality content shared to the Ticker, tell your friends to utilize the unshare button. – This isn’t natural. Often the best product design is translating existing behavior patterns to new mediums. But the proliferation of content, in both volume and access, requires a brand new conception of sharing and curation. Together we can bring about a golden age.

      RWW, MacManus: “Facebook Hasn’t Ruined Sharing, It’s Just Re-Defined It – Facebook’s new frictionless sharing features are ‘ruining sharing,’ according to a thought provoking article by CNET’s Molly Wood. In response, our own Marshall Kirkpatrick argued that Facebook’s seamless sharing is badly implemented and flat out ‘wrong.’ – Both made great points, but ultimately I don’t believe that frictionless sharing is a bad concept. What’s more, I disagree that it has ruined sharing. What Facebook has done is re-define sharing. I think it was an ingenious move and I predict that soon Facebook’s seamless sharing will be the norm. … It’s really up to Facebook to make sure that I, and millions of others, do get used to it. Especially, since this form of sharing is about to go viral. Let’s look at Instapaper, as an example of an app that may soon have frictionless sharing. … That’s not to belittle the very real concerns about over-sharing and privacy, as stated eloquently by Molly and Marshall. But Facebook has identified the immense value in tapping into media consumption patterns and, in frictionless sharing, it has found an ingenious way to capture that data. – Now Facebook’s challenge is to convince its users that some of that value is for the end user. Frictionless sharing is scary, there’s no doubt about it. It’s also not ideally implemented right now. So Facebook has work to do, both on the implementation and to show people the benefits of this new form of sharing.

  • Gerrit Eicker 08:26 on 15. November 2011 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , , Fox News, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , Sharing, , , , , , , , , ,   

    Media and Twitter 

    Pew: How mainstream media outlets use Twitter. Who tweets when, how, and how often? http://eicker.at/MediaTwitter

     
    • Gerrit Eicker 08:26 on 15. November 2011 Permalink | Reply

      Pew – Content Analysis Shows an Evolving Relationship: “For nearly every news organization, Twitter has become a regular part of the daily news outreach. But there are questions about how those organizations actually use the technology: How often do they tweet? What kind of news do they distribute? To what extent is Twitter used as a new reporting tool or as a mechanism for gathering insights from followers? – To answer some of these questions, the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism and The George Washington University’s School of Media and Public Affairs collaborated on a study of Twitter feeds from 13 major news organizations. … The research, which examined more than 3,600 tweets over the course of a week, reveals that these news organizations use Twitter in limited ways-primarily as an added means to disseminate their own material. … The news organizations were much more similar in the focus of their Twitter activity. The vast majority of the postings promoted the organizations’ own work and sent users back to their websites. … This is not to say that news organizations are not tapping into public sentiment on Twitter through other means. … Still, these findings reveal limited use of the institution’s public Twitter identity, one that generally takes less advantage of the interactive and reportorial nature of the Twitter.”

      Pew – Who Tweets When and How Often: “One way they differed was in the overall number of separate organizational Twitter feeds or channels offered. On average, the outlets studied offered 41 organizational Twitter feeds, ranging from the general-such as politics-to the narrow-such as Civil War or cycling. The Washington Post offered the largest number of separate feeds, at 98. The Daily Caller, a conservative web-only news operation led by former cable personality Tucker Carlson, offered the fewest, a single feed. – Major national newspapers tend to offer the most: As a group the four papers studied average 74. The three cable news channels average 45. The rest of the outlets studied-broadcast television, audio, online-only and local newspapers-average 18 Twitter feeds per outlet. … Across the news organizations studied, the number of followers varied dramatically, though that number was not necessarily tied directly to the outlet’s audience size in other platforms (i.e. television ratings or print circulation). CNN had more than twice the number of followers for its main news feed as Fox News did, yet Fox programs have higher ratings on television. The New York Times, which led among national newspapers in number of followers on Twitter, falls behind The Wall Street Journal and USA Today in print circulation.”

      Pew – The News Agenda on Twitter vs. Traditional Platforms: “The news agendas of the mainstream media and that of their analog presence on Twitter were strikingly similar during the week in which both were studied. … Even with a similar emphasis on top stories, one difference in the way news functions in the legacy platforms versus on Twitter is priority. While the total number of posts on Twitter may be more about one subject than another, there is no structural hierarchy to posts. No one post is given higher priority, or ‘front-page status,’ other than in how much they are shared. In 140 characters, everything is fairly equal.

      Pew – Sharing and Gathering Information: “In general, the major news organizations studied used Twitter to direct audiences to web content that the news organization had produced and posted online. But by and large, news outlets were not using Twitter in more interactive ways, or as a reporting tool. … Just 2% of the tweets examined from the main organizational Twitter feeds asked followers for information-either to help inform a story or to provide feedback. Even the most active outlets rarely or never solicited information from their followers. Less than 1% of the tweets from The New York Times, 3% from The Washington Post and 3% from The Huffington Post (one of two online-only news outlets studied) solicited information. … One notable exception to this was Fox News. Although the main Fox News feed had light activity on Twitter, fully one-fifth of its limited tweets (10 of the 48 tweets in the period examined) directly solicited information from followers. … Mainstream news organizations primarily use Twitter to move information and push content to readers. For these organizations, Twitter functions as an RSS feed or headline service for news consumers, with links ideally driving traffic to the organization’s website. Ninety-three percent (93%) of tweets on mainstream Twitter feeds contained a link that drove traffic back to its home site.”

      Pew – Little Use of Retweet Function: “Researchers found that retweeting is rare, and retweets do not often originate outside the news organization. Only 9% of the tweets examined were retweets. Of these, 90% originally appeared on another Twitter feed connected to the same news organization such as a section feed, reporter’s feed or, in the case of television networks, another show on the network. In all, only 1% of tweets studied originated from an entity outside the news organization. … Taken together, the retweet data and the findings with respect to the use of Twitter to solicit information suggest that mainstream news outlets are not generally using Twitter to expand the conversation or include alternative perspectives and voices.”

      Pew – Use of Hashtags: “There is also wide variation in the use of hashtags by the news organizations studied. … The Washington Post, one of the most active news organizations studied on Twitter, regularly used hashtags (21% of tweets studied included at least one hashtag) to categorize tweets. Fox News and the two local newspapers, The Toledo Blade and The Arizona Republic, used hashtags even more.”

      Pew – Individual Reporters‘ Use of Twitter: “If the organizational Twitter feed is mainly a way of disseminating their content, might individual journalists exploit the social nature of the tool more-using it to gather information and build connections with their readers? … As with news organizations, individual journalists use Twitter in widely divergent ways. … When these journalists did tweet, very little of that material was information-gathering in nature. Eight of the 13 reporters examined never asked followers to help provide information. On average, only 3% of individual reporters’ tweets did so. … Individual reporters did not retweet other content often during the week studied. The average portion of tweets that were retweets was 11%. … Overall, the findings suggest that when one moves away from the most popular Twitter personalities, usage becomes less personal, but also more interactive. … The practice of retweeting also indicated the levels to which health reporters studied were more interactive-on average, 22% of their tweets were retweets, compared with just 11% among the top-followed journalists.”

  • Gerrit Eicker 09:01 on 13. November 2011 Permalink
    Tags: , , , Browser Extension, Browser Toolbar, , , , , , Link Filtering, , , , , , , , , , , , , Sharing, , , , Social Framework, , , StumbleUpon Paid Discovery, StumbleUpon Recommendation Technology, , ,   

    StumbleUpon 

    Is social bookmarking and link filtering service StumbleUpon finally gaining traction? http://eicker.at/StumbleUpon

     
    • Gerrit Eicker 09:01 on 13. November 2011 Permalink | Reply

      In October 2011 StumbleUpon crossed the 20 million users‘ mark: “We are excited to announce that StumbleUpon has just reached 20 million members! We’ve come a long way over the last few years, and I wanted to thank all of our Stumblers for helping us get to this point. What started as a Firefox extension has now become available on any browser, as well as iPhone, iPad, and Android devices. Our userbase – which has more than doubled since last year – now stumbles more than 1,000 times per second at peak times of the day. When I recently came across a magazine clipping from 2003, it struck me that we now serve as many stumbles in a single hour as we did in our first year of existence! So it’s very exciting for us to reach such a milestone, all from the simple idea of ‘click a button, find cool stuff.’

      StumbleUpon claims it’s driving over 50 percent of social media traffic in the USA: “You may have heard the stat that StumbleUpon drives more traffic referrals than any other social media site. We wanted to shed some light on this by describing the lifecycle of a web page in StumbleUpon, especially how long you could expect the average web page to keep getting visitors. … You might be wondering why the time-on-site data for StumbleUpon traffic that we’ve shared in this graphic may differ from what you’re used to seeing in your web tracking platforms, such as Google Analytics, WebTrends, Yahoo! Web Analytics, CoreMetrics, etc. It’s because these platforms assign a ‘zero’ time-on-site to all single-page visits, regardless of how long those visitors spend on that one page.”

      So what is StumbleUpon?StumbleUpon helps you discover and share great websites. As you click Stumble!, we deliver high-quality pages matched to your personal preferences. These pages have been explicitly recommended by your friends or one of over [20] million other websurfers with interests similar to you. Rating these sites you like automatically shares them with like-minded people – and helps you discover great sites your friends recommend. … StumbleUpon uses ratings to form collaborative opinions on website quality. When you stumble, you will only see pages that friends and like-minded stumblers have recommended. This helps you discover great content you probably wouldn’t find using a search engine. … Using search engines to locate relevant content typically means hunting through pages of results. Rather than searching for quality web sites, StumbleUpon members are taken directly to web sites matching their personal interests and preferences. … Using a combination of human opinions and machine learning to immediately deliver relevant content, StumbleUpon presents only web sites that have been suggested by other like-minded Stumblers.”

      StumbleUpon’s Recommendation Technology: “StumbleUpon integrates peer-to-peer and social networking principles with one-click blogging to create an emergent content referral system. Our patent-pending toolbar system automates the collection, distribution and review of web content within an intuitive social framework, providing users with a browsing experience which resembles ‘channel-surfing’ the web. This architecture has easily scaled to millions of users. … StumbleUpon combines collaborative human opinions with machine learning of personal preference to create virtual communities of like-minded websurfers. Rating websites updates a personal profile (weblog) and generates peer networks of websurfers linked by common interest. These social networks coordinate the distribution of web content, such that users ‘stumble upon’ pages explicitly recommended by friends and peers. This social content discovery approach automates the ‘word-of-mouth’ referral of peer-approved websites and simplifies web navigation.

      How does StumbleUpon’s business model work? “Users stumble the best of the web, finding sites that reflect their interests and friends by simply hitting a button in their browsers or on their mobile devices. With Paid Discovery, your URL becomes part of that stream. The user is eager to engage with new and exciting content, making your product’s discovery a welcome experience in the eyes of a Stumbler. … Pay only for engaged unique visitors, on a budget that you control. No minimum spend and no bidding required.

      Wikipedia: “StumbleUpon is a discovery engine (a form of web search engine) that finds and recommends web content to its users. Its features allow users to discover and rate Web pages, photos, and videos that are personalized to their tastes and interests using peer-sourcing and social-networking principles. – Toolbar versions exist for Firefox, Mozilla Application Suite, Google Chrome and Internet Explorer, but StumbleUpon also works with some independent Mozilla-based browsers… StumbleUpon uses collaborative filtering (an automated process combining human opinions with machine learning of personal preference) to create virtual communities of like-minded Web surfers. Rating Web sites update a personal profile (a blog-style record of rated sites) and generate peer networks of Web surfers linked by common interest. These social networks coordinate the distribution of Web content, so that users ‘stumble upon’ pages explicitly recommended by friends and peers. Giving a site a thumbs up results in the site being placed under the user’s ‘favorites’. Furthermore, users have the ability to stumble their personal interests like ‘History’ or ‘Games’.”

  • Gerrit Eicker 07:18 on 2. November 2011 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , , , , , Google Stories, , , Marketing Tools, , , , , , Sharing, , , , , , , , , Testimonials, , , Twitter Stories, Twitter Tales, , ,   

    Twitter Stories 

    Twitter launches Twitter Stories: testimonials explaining how tweets impacted users; http://eicker.at/TwitterStories

     
    • Gerrit Eicker 07:19 on 2. November 2011 Permalink | Reply

      Twitter: “Today we’re launching the first in a series of Twitter stories. Read about a single Tweet that helped save a bookstore from going out of business; an athlete who took a hundred of his followers out to a crab dinner; and, Japanese fishermen who use Twitter to sell their catch before returning to shore. Each story reminds us of the humanity behind Tweets that make the world smaller. – Help us uncover more stories. Tell us how you or someone else have used Twitter in an interesting way. Submit your story by mentioning @twitterstories or by using the hashtag #twitterstories. Include a link to a photo or video that helps illustrate your story to the world. Each month we’ll curate a selection of profiles to share. – Follow @twitterstories to get the latest stories or check the site every month for a new collection.”

      TC: “Last year, Twitter debuted a marketing campaign, called Twitter Tales, that showcased ways in which users interact with the microblogging platform. Today, the company is launching a similar campaign, called Twitter Stories, which seems to show interesting Tweets and ways the site’s users are communicating via the platform. … User stories are always a good marketing tool. Facebook launched a similar marketing campaign around their 500 million users milestone last year, called Facebook Stories. Google also launched Google Stories, which collects stories from users sharing tales about how Google effected their lives.

      TNW: “Twitter is fast becoming an integral part of the way that its users communicate and has proven its ability to act as a fantastic channel to receive information quickly. The US Government has even recommended that citizens use Twitter to contact one another during emergencies instead of traditional cellular or phone lines, which can get congested.”

      HP: “Perhaps in an attempt to woo a more mainstream audience, Twitter has notably chosen to highlight several well-known celebrities and brands in the stories it picked, including Roger Ebert, Ochocinco, Queen Rania Al Abdullah, and Burberry.”

      WP: “In its five-year history, Twitter’s been used for inane updates on what was breakfast, as a vehicle for real-time news and as a way to spread revolutionary social ideas. On Tuesday, the service launched a new site, ‘Twitter Stories,’ to share a handful of stunning ways that the micro-blogging service has made a positive impact on people’s lives.”

      CNET: “Tales at a new site called Twitter Stories range from movie critic Roger Ebert‘s use of the service after he lost his voice, to a man who found a kidney donor after tweeting “Sh*t, I need a kidney,” to a man who saved his mother’s bookstore with a tweet, to pro football player Chad Ochocinco treating 100 followers to dinner with a surprise invitation delivered across the service.”

  • Gerrit Eicker 09:29 on 1. November 2011 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , Sharing, , , , , , , , ,   

    Google Plus + Google Reader 

    Google Reader gets redesigned and plusified: Google Plus now on Search, Blogger, Google Apps; http://eicker.at/GoogleReaderPlus

    (More …)

     
    • Gerrit Eicker 09:29 on 1. November 2011 Permalink | Reply

      Google: “Today we’re rolling out the new Reader design, and the Google+ features that we mentioned just over a week ago. Before the day’s over, all Reader users will be able to enjoy the following improvements: A new look and feel that’s cleaner, faster, and nicer to look at. The ability to +1 a feed item (replacing ‘Like’), with an option to then share it with your circles on Google+ (replacing ‘Share’ and ‘Share with Note’). … Updates to Google Reader on the web are rolling out gradually and should reach all users by end of day. A new Android application will follow soon. If you have questions about today’s announcements, please check out our Help Center.”

      RWW: “After announcing on October 20 that Google Reader would be annexed by Google Plus, Reader has gotten the ol’ +1 today. Google is rolling out the new, clean Plus theme that has already come to Gmail, Docs and elsewhere, and it is replacing the Reader ‘Like’ function with the +1 button. Sharing from Google Reader now produces a +snippet. I guess we no longer need that nice workaround. … For anyone who doesn’t use Google Plus, there are some amazing RSS clients that use your Google Reader as the back-end but let you share however you’d like. And you know you can still add all your preferred sharing services to the ‘Send To’ tab, right? The same settings we showed you before to add Google Plus as a Reader service will let you add anything else, too.”

      RWW: “Google has made very clear over the past month that Plus will be integrated into all of Google’s products over time, so this wasn’t a surprising move. However, rather predictably, there has been a user backlash anyway. … I believe that comment was a little disingenuous from Gray, because he knows that Google dominates what’s left of the RSS Reader market. There are always alternatives, but the reality is that relatively few people will use them. What’s more, most of the alternatives rely on Google Reader for content. … The RSS Reader market has declined because reading content is a very fragmented experience these days. … Even despite all of the changes in the way people consume content on the Web, Google Reader had been the holdout as a specialist RSS Reader product. It has (had?) a passionate community of RSS Reader fanatics.

      TNW: “The new look falls in line with the rest of the changes that we’ve seen from Google over the past few months, specifically after the launch of Google+. You’ll see a new preview pane that shows you all of your stories, with subscriptions along the left in a list like before. – Sharing in Google Reader is now considerably different than before. Instead of having a network in and of itself, anything that you share is now going to happen via a +1 to Google+, as detailed in a blog post last week. Google says that it has done this in order to ‘streamline Reader overall’, but the changes aren’t as welcome by everyone. … Ultimately it doesn’t take away from the usefulness of Google Reader as a product, and it’s not the first time that Google has pushed its way into your social life, either (remember the launch of Buzz?). At the end of the day it will be up to users to figure out if they want to share content via a +1, but chances are that Reader fans aren’t going to be adversely affected overall.”

      TC: “As expected, Google has ignored the cries of the niche community of Google Reader sharing enthusiasts [as well as what seems to be the entire online population of Iran], and has pushed forward in its plans to remove Google Reader’s native sharing features to promote deeper integration with Google+. While the ability to share with Google+ is an obvious important step forward for Google’s social agenda, it will be disappointing change for at least some of the Google Reader community – a community that even went so far as to create a petition to save the old features. The petition is now pushing 10,000 responses.”

      Blogger: “In fewer than 4 months since its launch, more than 40 million people have joined Google+, making it a living, breathing space for social connections and sharing to thrive. – Today we’re excited to announce the first way you will be able to leverage Google+ – by making it possible to replace your Blogger profile with your Google+ profile. – In addition to giving your readers a more robust and familiar sense of who you are, your social connections will see your posts in their Google search results with an annotation that you’ve shared the post.”

    • Gerrit Eicker 17:33 on 2. November 2011 Permalink | Reply

      Winer: “People should know that there is more than one way to do an RSS reading app. Google Reader is one approach. A thousand flowers should bloom to fill the gap it’s creating in the market. There is a way to do plumbing that’s open, that people can subscribe to, independent of Google. That does what Google Reader just stopped doing. I would try to make it work as much as I could without inventing new formats. … I love when people like Richard put awful ideas out there like the one he did. You’re trapped inside Google’s silo, even for something that was open from the start like RSS. Well I think there are a lot of people who are smart enough to know that that’s not true. Those are the very people I want to work with.

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