TweakTown NewsRefine News by Category:
This morning Twitter users found themselves unable to navigate to any links that were shortened by Twitter's own URL shortening service. AllThingsD reported that the company had no comment on the issue, and Twitter's status blog had no information on the outage either.
At one point in the morning, Twitter switched over to the URL shortening service Bit.ly, which fixed the situation temporarily. At the time of this writing, the service has been restored to Twitter's in-house URL shortener and several test confirm that everything is back to normal and working fine.
We just noticed an issue with our link to our Twitter account from TweakTown, which doesn't work with the trailing slash in the URL, whereas it did before this morning. We're not sure what happened to Twitter, but we'll report back if details come to hand.
Facebook announced this morning that it has begun rolling out a new emotion selection feature on its status box. Users can select between a full list of emotions or share what they are watching, listening to, reading, drinking or eating.
The new tool is only available in the US at the moment and the complete roll-out is expected to take several days. Facebook says that it wants to funnel conversations a bit to better convey what a user is doing, thinking or feeling.
Facebook wants you to actively link to an artist, food brand or even brewery when composing your status in hopes of drumming up more marketing revenue when those pages see increased traffic from your status updates.
Google have now enabled the ability for users to upload full-sized photos from any web browser to Google+. All you have to do is enable the option and let it do the photo uploading for you.
There are limits on the file size of the photos, with anything over 2048 pixels across (and videos over 15 minutes long) will still count toward your Google Drive cap.
250 million Facebook users play games on the service each month, equates to $2 billion in revenue for developers
Games on Facebook are an annoyance for some and a lifestyle for others. Whether or not you game on the social network, you most likely know several people who do. Today, Facebook released some astonishing statistics about its users' gaming habits.
In a release this morning, Facebook says that over 250 million of its users play games on its service. Roughly 20 percent of its daily users play some type of game when logged into the site. If that is not a wake up call to all game developers, then the monetary figures sure will be.
Over 100 game developers made $1 million last year from Facebook games alone, with the totality of all Facebook gaming developers splitting roughly $2 billion in revenue last year. Android and iOS developers are taking note too with over 55 percent of the top 400 iOS games having Facebook integration.
After a filing in 2007 based on its social network, Twitter was finally granted a patent on... well... Twitter. US Patent #8,401,009 grants Twitter the rights to how its service works.
When news came of the applications approval, Twitter co-founder, Biz Stone, tweeted "Look Ma, I'm officially an inventor." Does this mean that Twitter will begin suing other startup social networks or services that have similar functionality? Technically they could, but Twitter has a policy that requires its employees to vote before legal action could be taken.
"Like many companies, we apply for patents on a bunch of our inventions. We also think a lot about how those patents may be used in the future, which is why we introduced the Innovator's Patent Agreement to keep control of those patents in the hands of engineers and designers."
The infamous hashtag is something that Twitter has enjoyed, but it looks like rival social networking site Facebook could integrate it, too. Twitter didn't create the hashtag, but it is used frequently on the social network site that it has become the phrase people associate with Twitter.
The news comes from The Wall Street Journal, citing "people familiar with the matter" that the hashtag would come to Facebook, but won't be introduced "imminently." What would Facebook do with the hashtag? Well, they could use it for breaking news and current affairs going on, such as during TV shows when something is said during a show, they'll have a hashtag for it to use it on Twitter. Facebook could adopt something similar, but it's unknown how their hashtag service would work right now.
How do you think it should work? Leave us your thoughts in the comments.
Last year I reported on a bill passing congress that would allow Netflix to integrate with Facebook to share your watch history with your friends. Three months later, Netflix has finally implemented some functionality with the social network.
Today Netflix rolled out new features that will allow you to share your activity on your Facebook wall. After enabling the feature, two new rows will appear in your Netflix app that allows you to share your activity with your friends. Users will have the ability to post shows and films to Facebook and offer comments about recently viewed items.
This functionality has been available to the international crowd for well over a year now, but was held up in the US by obscure laws dating back to the VHS rental days that prevented renters from disclosing an individual's rental records. Netflix and Facebook teamed up to get the law amended - things were made official this past January.
Facebook's platform team have shared some big numbers over the last couple of days, including that more than 400 billion Open Graph actions have been shared "back to Facebook" as of March. Facebook defines their Open Graph actions as "the high-level interactions users can perform" in a Facebook-connected app.
These actions could include a multitude of things, following, liking, listening to music, reading an article, watching a video, etc. This makes the 400 billion action number impressive, but with 1 billion+ users, you can't be that astonished. Facebook add that "on average, people choose to share their app activity" with friends over 1 billion times per day. The social network have also said that as of this month, "110 million songs, albums and radio stations have been played 40 billion times" through Facebook-integrated apps and "1.47 million books have been shared."
RumorTT: Facebook looking into monthly subscription service, would add extra profile features, remove ads
Patents are often a double edged sword that can lend an interesting look into the way a company thinks. It's something we see and speculate on all the time, and this morning is nothing different. Facebook has filed a patent that could drastically change the social network's business model.
US Patent 20130030987 A1 was filed in 2011 and was granted in January of this year. It's titled "Paid Profile Personalization" and describes a method that would allow Facebook to remove ads, and implement "premium" features to the profiles of users who subscribe to a monthly service.
Does this mean that Facebook could be investigating a paid subscription service that would let you spice up your profile and remove those annoying tiny ads? Truthfully, I have no idea. The fact is that most patents remain unused and in recent times, they are used more as a blocking agent than a true "innovative idea."
The one thing I do know is that with 1+ billion users, if Facebook was able to get just 30% to subscribe to a $9.99 monthly service, then Facebook could be well on its way to becoming the most profitable company in the world. I seriously doubt I would opt in to another monthly subscription, but on the other hand, I know many people who would.
This Thursday Facebook will be holding a big press event where it is expected to announce the first major change to its Timeline feature since release in 2006. We are hearing speculation that the news feed may be broken down into multiple categories and would be configurable.
TechCrunch is reporting that in addition to the multiple news feeds, we will also see large timeline photos, and image based ads adorning the service. When tech news site Mashable reached out to Facebook and asked for a comment, they replied "We don't comment on rumor and speculation".
If the rumors are true, then we will see the new multiple feed feature somewhere at the top near the search bar as well as a new photo feed that would exclusively feature images uploaded through the Facebook and Instagram apps. My only worry is that the rollout of Facebook's last big announcement, Graph Search, has not even began to get started, so how long would it be before everyone had access to these new features?