Welcome to Episode #6 of Seriously Social News for Friday, 18th January 2013.
Another big week in social media with Facebook launching it’s own search engine called “Graph Search”, LinkedIn pulls the plug on it’s Q&A section “LinkedIn Answers”, Question & Answer social network Quora release book of the top 100 questions and answers, Google deny running over a donkey in Botswana and The Whitehouse say no to building the Death Star!
Seriously Social News is a short weekly round up on all that is new in the world of social media, the internet and technology. With so much happening in the world of social media and technology, it’s difficult to keep up with the latest news that affects you.
Facebook launches Graph Search
Social Media giant, Facebook announced a radical new feature on Tuesday with the rather uninspiring name “Graph Search”. Mark Zuckerberg is calling Graph Search one of the pillars of the “Facebook ecosystem” together with newsfeed and timeline. The new system is currently in beta and is being rolled out to users who have joined the waiting list. Graph search allows you to search amazingly quickly through Facebook’s vast open graph data, with information on your friends, their likes and the public information of other Facebook users. One of the impressive features of Graph Search is the way it copes with real sentences and questions allowing you to search using natural language. For example you can search for “photos of friends in Canada” or “movies my friends like” or even “Italian restaurants in Manchester that my friends like”. It’s very much work in progress with no integration with Facebook’s Open Graph or API, no adverts and no availability on mobile devices yet. Facebook CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, emphasised it’s partnership with Microsoft, but also that Graph Search wasn’t a web search tool. Some people have speculated that Facebook will be expanding it’s graph search into the web search area and to directly compete with Google. If you’re keen to get playing with graph search you’ll need to get on the waiting list- there’s a link in the show notes.
- Introducing Graph Search (sign up for beta) (Facebook)
- First Look at the New Facebook Search (Social Fresh)
- How Facebook’s Graph Search Just Replaced A Major Chunk Of Google (TechCrunch)
- What Can You Search For On Facebook Graph Search? (TechCrunch)
- Facebook Graph Search is brilliant (by Jim Dougherty at Leaders West)
- What Facebook’s Graph Search Means For Marketers (Social Media Explorer)
- Why Facebook’s ‘Graph Search’ Is a gamechanger (Econsultancy)
- 3 Privacy Settings You Must Change Before Using Facebook Graph Searchr (Gizmodo)
dlvr.it adds posting to Google+
Popular syndication service dlvr.it has announced a new service that makes it possible to post directly to your Google+ business page. dlvr.it allows you to automatically post from RSS feeds to Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, App.net and Google+ Pages. This can be useful for connecting a news service, article feed or a blog to all your social networks. Although I don’t recommend fully automating your social networks, when used properly, this can be a very useful facility for small businesses who lack the time needed to fully manage their networks. For the time being dlvr.it only posts to Google+ business pages since Google+ haven’t released an API for personal profiles. This new service is available on dlvr.it’s pro and ultimate plans which cost $9.99 and $19.99 per month respectively.
- Dlvr.it Can Now Automatically Deliver Blog Posts & Updates Directly To Google+ (Marketing Land)
- dlvr.it now supports posting to Google+ Pages! (dlvr.it blog)
LinkedIn Pulls the Plug on Answers
LinkedIn will be retiring its Question and Answer service LinkedIn Answers, on the 31st January this year. In an email sent out to users, the reason for the closure is put down to LinkedIn wanting to focus their efforts on other areas of the professional social network. Users are recommended to ask questions and be involved in discussions in LinkedIn groups. Many put the decision down to LinkedIn answers never reaching critical mass with low user engagement. Facebook made a similar decision when it closed down Facebook Questions back in October last year.
- RIP LinkedIn Answers (Mashable)
- LinkedIn to Retire Its ‘Answers’ Discussion Forum (Social Times)
- Why LinkedIn made a huge mistake by discontinuing LinkedIn Answers (Leaders West)
Quora Releases Book of 100 Best questions and answers
Question and Answer social network, Quora, has announced it is sending a “best of Quora 2010-2012” book to its top writers. The book, which is 400 pages long, covers the best questions and answers from Quora over the two year period including technology, music, advice and literature. The good news is that the book can be downloaded by anyone in its digital format for free. Detail are in the show notes.
- More than 100 of Quora’s all-time best answers are now available as a free, 400-page PDF book (The Next Web)
- Top Writers 2012 Book: Available for Download (Quora Blog)
Google Deny Running Over Donkey
I think google street view ran over a donkey in Botswana;maps.gstatic.com/m/streetview/?…
— Dr. Sheldon Cooper (@TheRealSheldonC) January 14, 2013
Earlier this week there were reports that a donkey was run over and killed by a Google Street View car in Botswana. According to The Next Web, the story started on Monday with a tweet speculating that Google may have ran over a donkey with a link to the street view image of the donkey in the road. In an unusual move, Google decided to investigate and posted it’s findings on its blog with an entry entitled “Never Ass-ume”. Apparently the donkey was having a little rest in the middle of the road before moving safely away to let the Google Street View Car drive on its way.
- Original Street View photo of Donkey (Google Maps)
- No, Google did not run over a donkey in Botswana (The Next Web)
- Never ass-ume (Google Maps Blog)
The White House Rejects Building the Death Star
And finally, Star Wars fans were distraught last week when the White House announced that it wouldn’t be building the Death Star. The online petition on the White House’s “We the People” web site reached the required 25,000 signature mark and requested that the United States government “Secure resources and funding, and begin building the Death Star by 2016”. The original petition made humorous and interesting reading with the estimated build cost being put at around $850,000 trillion dollars. The White House responded with Jedi like tactics in a document entitled “This isn’t the Petition Response You’re Looking For”. The main force of the argument against building the Death Star was down to price and being against blowing up planets. Another fair point was also announced in that “Why would we spend countless taxpayer dollars on a Death Star with a fundamental flaw that can be exploited by a one-person starship?” Since then, the 25,000 signature threshold for a White House Response to a petition has been raised to 100,000.
- White House rejects Death Star petition: ‘$850qn too pricey’ (The Register)
- This Isn’t the Petition Response You’re Looking For (The White House Petitions)
- 100K signatures now needed before White House comments on Death Star plans (Ars Technica)