We know that it’s rare to come across a person who doesn’t have some sort of social media account. A social media strategist Vincenzo Cosenza has even said that if Facebook was a virus, nearly the whole world would have succumbed to it already. And he’s not wrong.
Cosenza analyzed 137 countries to see how many people are on Facebook and put together a world map of social networks that shows just what the most popular social network is, as a result of a combination of Alexa and Google Trends for Websites Traffic data. According to this data, Facebook is in 126 of the 137 countries that were taken into account.
Surprisingly, America wasn’t the country that showed to have the most users on Facebook, but rather it was Europe that came out on top with 232 million users compared to North America’s 222 million users. According to research performed on comScore, America’s unique Facebook visitors only increased by 5% from April 2011 to April 2012, which lists Facebook as the lowest U.S growth rate. This data also lets us see that 71% of the 221 million U.S Internet users are on Facebook.
Of course other social media networking sites such as LinkedIn, Twitter, QZone and Zing still remain in full effect by millions of users in the U.S and other countries. Twitter, for example is the second most popular site in countries such as the U.S, Sweden and the U.K and LinkedIn is the second in Australia, Denmark, India, Finland and Canada.
Although research shows that the spread of Zuckerberg’s creation has been slowing, I don’t think that the worldwide social media network will be outranked anytime soon, even by popular upcoming social sites.
Although many viewers may not have realized they were watching history, Twitter’s first ever commercial aired this past Sunday. You can see the commercial here. The advertisement featured NASCAR driver Brad Keselowski tweeting from inside the driver’s seat and promoted a new hash tag page for NASCAR. Those watching thought this was the start of plenty of branded hash tag pages that would overtake the platform.
It’s being reported in a few places that this isn’t quite the case. Twitter is saying these new hash tag pages are specifically for events, not for brands. NASCAR has no control whatsoever over what ended up on the #NASCAR page. Twitter is using these pages to document major events and make it easier for users to feel as if they are experiencing an event without even being in attendance. The algorithm that Twitter is using is able to discern more important tweets, such as those from drivers, from lesser tweets such as from a fan watching at home.
This is a great idea for Twitter, as they are still putting the consumer first. Without having a brand shove a message down your throat they are able to create pages that deal with a brand, but aren’t solely about the brand. The experience of the event will always come first. This is exactly what social media is about.
So what’s next for hash tag pages? Besides major sporting events, I assume major television events such as finales and awards shows will be the next to get the hash tag page treatment. This will make Twitter an even better place to “live” tweet an event as you’ll be able to quickly see a ton of posts and media and become fully engaged without having to seek out a few different hash tags or phrases.
With 85% of high school students owning mobile phones and millions of Facebook users, the opportunities for cyber bullying are more prevalent than ever. In some court cases, the problems were so bad that Facebook was forced to reveal the aggressors. While there has been a lot of controversy surrounding this, like in schools, cyber bullying becomes a legal issue.
Increasingly, people are using social media as ways of expression. While social media marketing has become a very successful way for businesses to advertise as well, the abuse of Facebook has led to this whole new world of bullying that wasn’t present 50 years ago. Because of this, new measures must be taken to curtail it.
One such way of preventing bullying online and in schools is creating a mobile app. By having an application right on your mobile phone, you would be able to directly contact the school or administrator of a site when you see bullying occurring. It can be done anonymously, so students wouldn’t feel like they were ratting out people or getting themselves in trouble as well.
The problem with such apps and programs is that they often come at a very high price. A school would need to be set up with a way to check it and monitor messages that come in. Especially in situations where bullying can become a legal issue, it is important that all facts coming in are accurate. Also, with today’s economy, and school districts cutting left and right, they might not be in a position to change their policies as of late.
No matter what the method, cyber bullying needs to be combated. With the widespread use of The Internet and social media, the number of bullies online has unfortunately grown as well. To provide a safer environment for students of all ages and adults alike, it is essential that this battle is not only fought in schools and the workplace, but that websites themselves are monitoring their content. By doing so, directly or indirectly people’s lives are being saved.
When it comes to the location based aspect of social media marketing and checking-in Foursquare is the king. Foursquare offers check-in promotions for certain retailers if they set them up through Foursquare, but what happens if retailers and brands start taking this idea and creating their own apps for it?
This is exactly what Denny’s is doing. They’ve created an app and a contest that is based around checking-in to one of their restaurants in each of the 50 U.S. states. The first person to do this will win free Grand Slams for life. I heard about this and started plotting to be the first to win as I love Denny’s, but alas I don’t think taking off from work to drive cross-country to eat Denny’s will go over well with my bosses. If you run into the same problem that I do there are other promotions available from checking-in to a Denny’s numerous times.
These kinds of apps could spell trouble for Foursquare. I downloaded the app to see how it worked and here’s the first thing I saw.
The Denny’s brand smacking me in the face. Why would a large company ever consider check-in promotions through Foursquare again when they could get their brand integrated into an app of their own?
You can see when I went to enter the 50 State Challenge I once again had the Denny’s logo on my screen and the ability to sign in using my Facebook account. This kind of high-quality app will keep me engaged with the Denny’s brand and also functions well enough to not cause any sort of frustration.
I think as we move ahead into the world of location-based promotions we will see retailers and brands produce more and more apps like these. Foursquare may need to begin considering what it can do to make its own app standout and be the clear choice for brands looking to get people checking-in.
Today, it seems like big banks and corporations are constantly in the news. With the recent financial crisis, there have been massive government takeovers as well as buy outs from other banks. This banking crisis was caused by loans that were not paid and was also one of the direct results of the housing crisis. Unfortunately because of the global connectivity of the world today, the events that occurred on Wall Street and in other cities aside from New York escaladed across the ocean to Europe and other places abroad.
People in the banking industry have (yet again) reason to worry. Mobile iPhones now have apps that are “mobile wallets”. These mobile wallets are used to store money digitally, eliminating the need to use a specific bank. Approximately 50% of the country has expressed interest in digital wallets. Consumers can easily make purchases and pay bills online without ever having to go through the bank. It is predicted that within 5 years, today’s smartphone users will use mobile wallets as their preferred method of banking.
This type of digital transaction is another reason banks have to worry. While going digital has proved to be successful for companies to grow, it has caused a loss of jobs. People no longer need to go into banks to deposit checks and pay bills. With online banking becoming a preferred method for on the go people, there is less of a need for physical banks. That’s the unfortunate truth of an online world. There is less of a need for physical jobs, but an increased demand for web marketing content.
In order to save banks and save jobs, the industry needs to stay on top of their game. Banks need to make sure their apps are comparable with these mobile wallets so people continue to use their resources. While going digital has created a loss of physical jobs in many cases, a complete overtake by mobile wallets would mean even more jobs lost. In a slow job market, it is essential that this does not occur.
Ever look at a symbol on your American standard keyboard and wonder the functionality of each one? The @ key has been on of some controversy lately. Some would like to see it as its own key, no longer requiring the combination of keys to access the usage. While the controversy is a little bit absurd I understand the argument, but like anything its best to understand the history of the symbol before passing judgment!
The @ key has had a verity of different uses through its existence. It is said it originated with the Medieval Monks abbreviating the Latin word ad which meant “at, toward by and about.” They did this to save on ink and expensive writing material. The @ symbol (At Sign / Commercial At) in more modern times was used as an accounting and commercial invoice abbreviation meaning to signify “at a rate of”. However it was never used in financial documents. It was later was intergraded into typewriters early 1900’s.
Over the last twenty years this symbol has taken on a different form, being used for E Mail signifying “located at” or “directed at” (i.e. firstname.lastname@example.org). Today it is on every modern keyboard (Shift + 2). While today’s modern usage has taken a completely different form with the introduction of social media platforms Facebook and Twitter showing yet another life for this symbol using the symbol to signify groups or people (i.e. @NHL).
With the usage of @ currently becoming so common and intergraded into everyday use, some are complaining to press two keys to produce the symbol. When I text on my iPhone the @ symbol is its own button. Now with the use of has tags (# for twitter) and plus signs (+ for google+) in social media each requiring two keys to type is it necessary to revamp a keyboard that has served us for over 100 years for something that could be a fading trend in time?
According to The Wallstreet Journal, Facebook is working on creating a technology that will allow children under 13 to use the social networking site. This might not seem like big news because so many kids under 13 already lie about their age and use Facebook anyway, but this is a topic of big controversy. Should we really be condoning young children to use this site? Is it appropriate for them? Well, Facebook wants to set up something that will make the children under 13 have to have parental supervision. This could definitely allow Facebook to tap into a new pool of users for increased profits but, there will definitely be some people with privacy concerns.
As a concerned parent, I would think that Facebook has a duty to start involving parents in younger children’s Facebook activity. Some of the methods being tested out for this include connecting the younger children’s accounts to their parents’ accounts and also putting in controls that would give parents the power to decide whom their kids can “friend” and what apps they can use. Also, this would allow Facebook to charge the parents for the games and apps that their children access, which is why this idea seems so appealing to Facebook in terms of profitability.
Facebook wants to formalize the younger kids’ presence on this social media site because they’re already using it, so we might as well acknowledge that. Personally, I know of kids as young as 10 that access Facebook on a daily basis. Their parents know about it, but I think that we should really be working on protecting the younger users. By creating some more controls for the younger kids, Facebook can protect their privacy and keep parents informed about what their kids are doing online. I would want to know what my child is doing on Facebook. I would want to know what she’s posting on that site for all her friends to see. I definitely don’t want to end up like the guy who shot his daughter’s laptop. He was a concerned parent that was failed by the inability to monitor his daughter’s Facebook account. We need Facebook to add something for us to keep our children in check on this site.
Younger kids are relying on technology more and more. There are kids in elementary school that own an iPhone and a laptop. Honestly, they really don’t need most of the things they have, and us parents have done everything we can to give our kids the best childhood they could possibly have. Now it’s our turn to get some say in what our kids do. We deserve to have some input about our children’s online presence. If Facebook formalizes a process for children under 13, concerned parents will definitely benefit.
Technology has made it easier for our generation to stay connected to each other in a variety of ways. We can give thanks to the rise of social media which allows us to stay in contact with all of our friends at the click of a button. Spotify is a good example of a company that uses social media to its advantage to allow you to see the music that your friends are listening to in real-time.
In an effort to connect music and love, Spotify recently partnered with two match-making application companies tastebuds.fm and fellody.com. This partnership creates an interesting perspective on the music streaming service industry and poses a future competition risk to traditional dating websites. There is no doubt that social media, music, and searching for the one is an important part of our lives and now there is a platform combining them all in one place. Music is one of the most used conversation topics in dating and friendships and this created an opportunity for Spotify to enter the online-dating industry. It seems as if the possibilities are endless within the social media realm and now you can potentially find your true love on Spotify, not necessarily a bad thing.
So I bet you’re wondering what value these two dating agencies add to Spotify. Well tastebuds.fm will scan through your choice in music by looking at recently played songs as well as any playlists you have made. The company will then take that information to match you up with other people who have similar music tastes. According to research done by Tastebuds and Spotify they have observed that “â€¦43 per cent of first messages get a reply on Tastebuds – a much higher response rate than non-music based dating sites.” This definitely poses a potential problem to regular dating websites and they may have some tough competition if things work out well for this strategic partnership.
The future of social media and the music streaming industry is unpredictable; a good example of this is with MySpace. Will this trend eventually die out or can these companies keep changing with the times in order to differentiate themselves from other competing services in an already saturated marketplace? The answer to this question will depend upon companies like Spotify who are adding value to the everyday user in order to sustain interest in using the service.
On Wednesday, June 6th, a Russian hacker claimed to have stolen over 6.5 million LinkedIn passwords. Some of the passwords (without their associated usernames) were posted online. Mashable and other news outlets have already covered the topic in great detail, so I thought I’d approach it from a different angle and browse through some of the (alleged) list of cracked passwords.
A couple of different sites have popped up that allow you to securely check if your password was leaked. I spent some time typing in random passwords to see if there were among the list. Note: Even if your password was not on the list, you should still change it.
Here’s a list of some passwords that were compromised:
- linkedin (I’m guessing these people use â€˜facebook’ as their FB login)
- 8675309 (I guess a lot of people like that Tommy Tutone song)
- ihatemyjob (we hope this never gets out to your bosses or you might need some reputation management help)
- chucknorris (even the great Chuck Norris can’t protect you from hackers)
- password (yup, people still use that one)
- wordpass (nope, this one’s not any better)
Here’s a list of some passwords that were not on the list. Note: this doesn’t mean that the following passwords are any more secure than the words in the compromised list. You can click here to determine how secure your current password is.
- didierdrogba (he scored a goal in the Champions League final for Chelsea)
- 3password12 (did you know that adding numbers, punctuation marks and capital letters will make your password much more secure?)
- theinternet (hmmâ€¦)
Hopefully these lists will spur some of you with weak passwords to make up more secure passwords. Most hacking programs don’t actually care if your password is a real word or a jumble of letters; a lengthy password with at least one capital letter, number and/or punctuation marks is the best way to go.
It’s a bird, it’s a plane, it’sâ€¦Thunderclap? When I first saw the name I thought of Thunderlips, but it turns out this new service has nothing to do with Rocky (unfortunately, as we all know everything is better if it has to do with Rocky).
Thunderclap is a service that has the ability to make anyone a thought leader. While the site is currently in a closed-beta phase, the concept makes plenty of sense. You visit the Thunderclap website and enter a message you want to spread, then you give the amount of people you’d like to send the message and a time limit for reaching that goal, if you reach your goal your message will instantly be retweeted by everyone that “supported” your message. In theory, you could instantly create a trending topic on Twitter.
I think this is a tremendous idea that can give people without a lot of followers in the social media front lines a voice. However, I am skeptical that Thunderclap will work out and actually make a difference. While it would be great for a charity to get the word out through Thunderclap, I don’t think that is how the service will pan out. I think Thunderclap will eventually be overrun by groups who have an agenda they want to push. Today’s celebrity-focused society will almost certainly come into play on Thunderclap as a social marketing tool. I’m sure this will be another way for celebrities to engage with their followers and those followers will love having the opportunity to “support” their favorite celebrity’s latest message.
I love the idea behind Thunderclap and I hope it becomes everything it can be, but I’m nervous it will quickly become commercialized. Only time will tell. Now excuse me while I pop in Rocky III and watch Thunderlips in all his glory.