TWEAKS AND UPDATES
TechCrunch: Mailchimp’s marketing automation tools are now available for free. “With this newly free service, any online business can now easily create an automatic email that goes out a day after somebody abandons a virtual shopping cart, for example, or a day after somebody makes a first purchase. Similarly, they can set up a series of welcome emails or use the service for more transactional messages like receipts, shipping updates or invoices. MailChimp set up a number of pre-configured automations for some of these most popular use cases.”
Digital Trends: Find Local Garage Sales Faster With Facebook’s Update To Marketplace. “Facebook’s local commerce platform, Marketplace, is now a bit easier to navigate. The latest Facebook update gives Marketplace a facelift, making it a bit easier to find exactly what you’re looking for nearby.”
The Next Web: YouTube is testing a slick new design – here’s how to get it right now. “YouTube today announced it’s allowing everyone to preview its new site design — the cleaner, more minimalist version you never knew you wanted. The site is far less cluttered than previous iterations and makes use of generous amounts of ever-so-appealing whitespace.” I just want YouTube to fix its horrible search engine.
Online Journalism Blog: How to: find local sources for an election in another country using Facebook Graph. “Facebook Graph was launched in 2013 as a specific tool for finding people based on their interests. The ‘graph’ part refers to its ability to find people based on intersecting qualities: combinations of their likes, places of work, friends, and where they live and come from. The tool itself was dropped in 2014, but the ability to search based on intersecting qualities remained, as part of the general Facebook search. You just have to know how to use it…”
AROUND THE SEARCH AND SOCIAL MEDIA WORLD
Vice: China is recruiting 20,000 people to write its own Wikipedia. “Known as the ‘Chinese Encyclopedia,’ the country’s national encyclopedia will go online for the first time in 2018, and the government has employed tens of thousands of scholars from universities and research institutes who will contribute articles in more than 100 disciplines. The end result will be a knowledge base with more than 300,000 entries, each of which will be about 1,000 words long.”
Fortune: A Look at Government Censorship in the Age of Facebook. “Censoring the Internet is easier than ever. In the past, governments tried to rely on technology to stifle online dissent, but now they have another option: They can just use trolls and social media to rob protest movements of their power.”
Graham Cluley: IBM has been shipping malware-infected USB sticks. “IBM has warned customers that it accidentally shipped a number of malware-infected USB sticks to enterprises ordering its IBM Storwize V3500, V3700 and V5000 Gen 1 flash storage solutions.”
Dark Reading: New Free Shodan Tool Roots Out RATs. “The new Malware Hunter crawler, unveiled today, is the result of a project that began in 2015 by Recorded Future and Shodan that roots out remote access Trojan (RAT) operations by detecting computers on the Internet that are serving as RAT command-and-controllers (C2s) in botnets.”
Association of Research Libraries: Louisiana State University Sues Elsevier for Breach of Contract. “Louisiana State University (LSU) filed a lawsuit on February 27, 2017, against international science publisher Elsevier B.V. for breach of contract resulting from the publisher’s exclusion of the LSU School of Veterinary Medicine from accessing content licensed by the LSU Libraries. In filing the lawsuit, LSU exercised sound financial stewardship of its public resources.”
Reuters: Italy tax chief says close to deal with Google over tax dispute: paper. “Italy is looking at a proposal from Google to pay between 270 million and 280 million euros to settle a tax dispute, a source close to the matter said in January.”
RESEARCH & OPINION
The Guardian: I’m an ex-Facebook exec: don’t believe what they tell you about ads. “Converting Facebook data into money is harder than it sounds, mostly because the vast bulk of your user data is worthless. Turns out your blotto-drunk party pics and flirty co-worker messages have no commercial value whatsoever. But occasionally, if used very cleverly, with lots of machine-learning iteration and systematic trial-and-error, the canny marketer can find just the right admixture of age, geography, time of day, and music or film tastes that demarcate a demographic winner of an audience. The ‘clickthrough rate’, to use the advertiser’s parlance, doesn’t lie.”
EurekAlert: People could be genetically predisposed to social media use. “It’s easy to think in terms of linking genetics to behavior in simple ways. Are you calm or do you have a temper? Are you creative or analytical? Are you sociable or shy? But can heritable traits actually influence a person to frequently use social media? A recent study by a researcher at the Kent State University found that genetics outweighed environment in social media use using twin study survey data.” Good morning, Internet…
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