morningbuzz

Twitter, Instagram, Text to Speech, More: Tuesday Buzz, February 13, 2018

TWEAKS AND UPDATES

Mashable: As Twitter stock soars, its video app Periscope is suffering from neglect. “When Twitter announced it had acquired Periscope in March 2015, the app was full of promise. It was one of the first to let anyone broadcast video of themselves live from anywhere in the world, using just a smartphone. It also let them interact with viewers through real-time comments and a little heart button used to express that you ‘liked’ someone’s video. By the end of 2015, Apple crowned Periscope iOS app of the year — and Twitter had a hit on its hands. But three years later, Periscope is a shell of its former self.”

TechCrunch: Instagram is testing screenshot alerts for stories. “Instagram is testing a feature that will show users when someone else takes a screenshot of their story. Users included in the test are getting a warning that the next time they take a screenshot of a friend’s story the friend will be able to see it, as shown below…”

Small Business Trends: Amazon Polly WordPress Plugin Turns Business’s Printed Content Into Spoken Word. “The launch of the Amazon Polly plug-in for WordPress is going to turn blog posts into spoken audio or podcasts. And it will do this in 47 female and male voices and 30 languages.”

Boy Genius Report: Snapchat brings its Snap Map to the web. “While Snapchat users are still reeling from the recent update, the company has continued to expand beyond the reaches of the app. After giving users the ability to share and watch Stories outside of the app last month, Snap this week is bringing the Snap Map feature to the web for anyone to browse, regardless of whether or not they have the app.”

USEFUL STUFF

Hongkiat: How to See Shortened URLs Without Opening Them. “If you ever come across a link in email or on a website, always hover your mouse cursor over it to see the destination URL at the bottom of the browser to ensure it’s safe. But, this trick doesn’t work with shortened URLs that are quite common these days on social media websites. However, this also doesn’t mean you have to facecheck every short URL and risk your security. There are multiple ways to check what’s behind a shortened URL without opening it. And in this post, I’ll show you how to do it on your PC and your smartphone.”

Larry Ferlazzo: Wow, “Lumen5” Looks Like An Amazingly Easy Way To Turn Blog Posts & Articles Into Videos!. “Short videos from jounalistic sites (including Ed Week and Edutopia) have included images overlaid with text, accompanied by music. They’re very engaging, and I’ve wondered how they create them. Now, I don’t have to wonder any longer, because there’s a free web tool called Lumen5 that – up to this point – may be my favorite new Web 2.0 tool of the year (yes, I know it’s only February).”

AROUND THE SEARCH AND SOCIAL MEDIA WORLD

Atlas Obscura: Where Old, Unreadable Documents Go to Be Understood. “ON ANY GIVEN DAY, FROM her home on the Isle of Man, Linda Watson might be reading a handwritten letter from one Confederate soldier to another, or a list of convicts transported to Australia. Or perhaps she is reading a will, a brief from a long-forgotten legal case, an original Jane Austen manuscript. Whatever is in them, these documents made their way to her because they have one thing in common: They’re close to impossible to read.”

Splinter News: Twitter Has an Astroturfing Tool and They Won’t Tell Us Who’s Using It. “Over the past year or so, Twitter users have noticed at least two bizarre ad campaigns that don’t link to a real Twitter account, or have any presence on the web at all: Heartland Priorities and the Middle America Project. Using a Twitter Ads feature that allows advertisers to create promoted tweets that aren’t linked to any permanent profile, these fake organizations are running ads on a number of important public policy issues. Thanks to Twitter’s complete lack of transparency (and refusal to comment for this story), we have no idea who they are.”

MIT Technology Review: Social networks are broken. This man wants to fix them.. “Ethan Zuckerman studies how people change the world, or attempt to, by using social media or other technological means. As director of the Center for Civic Media at MIT and an associate professor at the MIT Media Lab, he tries to help his students make sense of these issues. Zuckerman is also writing a book about civic engagement during a time when we have a lot less trust in institutions—government, businesses, banks, and so on.”

LA Times: Giant advertiser Unilever threatens to pull its ads from Facebook and Google over ‘toxic content’. “One of the world’s largest advertisers is threatening to pull its ads from social sites such as Facebook and YouTube if the tech companies don’t do more to minimize divisive content on their platforms. Unilever’s chief marketing officer, Keith Weed, will call on Silicon Valley on Monday to better police what he describes as a toxic online environment where propaganda, hate speech and disturbing content that exploits children thrive.”

SECURITY & LEGAL

Techdirt: Facebook Takes Down Post Critical Of Indian Film For Copyright Violation, Even Though It Was An All-Text Post. “When I tell you that Saldanha had a Facebook post taken down over a copyright notice, you must certainly be thinking that it had something to do with environmental activism. Nope! Actually, Saldanha wrote an all-text mini-review of an Indian film, Padmaavat, which was taken down after the distributor for the film claimed the post infringed on its copyrights.” The entirety of the post is included in the article. This is absolutely nuts.

RESEARCH & OPINION

Economic Times: Killing the like button may lessen social media anxiety, shows VoxWeb . “Social media users tend to post more, be less anxious, and spend more time on the platform if the ‘number counter’ for the thumbs up button is removed, a social experiment conducted by Voxweb has found. VoxWeb is a social media platform that lets users add voice captions to pictures and has about one million active users on its platform.”

Phys .org: Predictive algorithms are no better at telling the future than a crystal ball . “Predictive analytics powered by algorithms are designed to help managers make decisions that favourably impact the bottom line. The global market for this technology is expected to grow from US$3.9 billion in 2016 to US$14.9 billion by 2023. Despite the promise, predictive algorithms are as mythical as the crystal ball of ancient times.” Good morning, Internet…

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