Welcome to Episode #7 of Seriously Social News for Friday, 25th January 2013.
Something odd is happening on Facebook with related posts appearing on friends’ feeds without users knowing about it. EE responds by launching most expensive 4G tariff after “listening” to customers, The Windows 8 upgrade cost is to rocket from February onwards and the Surface Pro is coming in February. Quora releases blogs and Twitter enhance their embedding tweets facility.
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 Posting Likes to Stories On Your Behalf
Recently there has been a lot of concern from Facebook users that stories are being sent on their behalf without them knowing. An article on the Forbes website this week, as well as a discussion on Reddit, drew attention to an issue where Facebook tends to recycle likes and attaches your name to sponsored stories without your consent. It seems that if you like a page on Facebook, your friends can later see a sponsored or related story from that page appear in their news feed with a note saying you like the page. Although the story doesn’t actually say that the person likes the actual article, some Facebook users have complained that it can look like the user is actually endorsing the story. This is particularly unhelpful if the story is of an embarrassing or offensive nature. There have even been reports of Facebook users shown as liking a Facebook page in this way without having ever liked the page in the first place. There has been some confusion as to whether or not Facebook logs a kind of like just by linking to a Facebook page. Whatever is happening, some clarity on the situation is needed. I’m digging down to see if I can shed some more light on the issue, but for the time being it’s my recommendation to keep on top of your Likes by deleting or unliking any you feel shouldn’t be there.
- Facebook is Recycling Your Likes to Promote Stories You’ve Never Seen to all your friends (Forbes)
- Why are dead people liking stuff on Facebook? (Read Write)
- Facebook Settlement Email (Mashable)
- This Flaw in Facebook lets you create as many fake likes as you want (Business Insider)
- Facebook impersonating Users without their consent (Bureau of Minds)
- Reddit Thread: Facebook Impersonating Users without their consent (Reddit)
- How to do a Facebook Personal Profile Security Audit (iag.me)
UK Mobile Operator Giant EE launches the most expensive tariff after “listening to customers”.
The UK 4G mobile network operator, EE, has been heavily criticised for its high tariffs and low data bundles. It’s cheapest tariff which cost £36 per month only came bundled with 500Mb of data. Some people stated that on 4G speeds this would take about 5 minutes to get through. EE also never offered unlimited data, although if someone can explain to me what unlimited means these days I’d love to know! Well, apparently EE has been “listening” to customer feedback and has updated its pricing plans. In a ludicrous move, EE is keeping the 500Mb data plan but lowering the monthly tariff to “only” £31 per month. The top data plan used to be 8Gb but in a sort of welcome move a new plan giving 20Gb has been launched– at a price. If you get a phone with your contract this is going to cost you £76 per month. Since EE is the only network given authority to offer 4G by the UK telecoms regulator Ofcom, they have been accused by some as having the sole aim to rake in the money before the competition moves in.
Windows 8 Will Cost You $120 After Jan. 31
If you want to upgrade to Microsoft’s latest operating system, Windows 8 you can currently get it at the knock down price of £24.99 in the UK or $39.99 in the US. You’ll have to be quick though, as after January 31st prices are to shoot up to over $120. Currently customers can upgrade to Windows 8 Pro at the special price, but upgrading to Windows 8 Pro from February onwards is going to set you back $199 or $119 for the basic edition.
Surface Pro sales begin on February 9th in the US and Canada, starting at $899
Finally after many months of waiting, consumers will soon be able to get their hands on Microsoft’s new high-end professional tablet, the Surface Pro. The Surface Pro is being released in the US and Canada on 9th February with prices starting at $899. Unfortunately no release date or prices for the UK have been announced. The Surface Pro tablet is powered by an Intel i5 processor and runs a full version of Windows 8 Pro, meaning users are able to install and use full Windows applications. There are two models– a 64Gb and 128Gb model and is aimed squarely at the business market.
- You can buy a Surface Pro on February 9th (Gizmodo)
- Surface Pro Available in the US and Canada on February 9th (The Verge)
- UK PC Buyers in the Dark Over Microsoft Surface Windows 8 Pro Release Date (IT Pro)
- Microsoft introduces Surface Pro tablet at ultrabook price (The Telegraph)
Quora Launches Blogs
This week, question and answer social network Quora, kind of released a new feature called Quora Blogs. I say “kind of” because they aren’t entirely new. The new blog feature is based on the curation tool Quora Boards which were launched in December 2011. Existing Quora board users will now be using the new blog feature automatically. Quora is trying to persuade writers and existing bloggers to use Quora to write great content which will be appealing to its user base. One big advantage is your content being discovered quickly, but my recommendation is to use it in addition to a blog you own. Whilst Quora blogs do have their advantages, keeping your content hosted on a platform you own makes much more sense in that you can make sure it lasts.
- Quora Drops Boards, Relaunches Them As Blogs (Marketing Land)
- Quora expands into a blogging platform, promises rich text mobile editing soon (The Next Web)
- No longer just questions and answers, Quora introduces user blogs (The Verge)
- Quora users can now share contributions on LinkedIn, post answers directly to their profiles (The Next Web)
Twitter improves embedded tweets & Launches Mini Video Sharing App “Vine”
In September 2011, Twitter added the facility to allow users to embed tweets on their website. This week, Twitter enhanced the embed feature to show photos, videos and article summaries as well including retweets and speeding up the load time. On Thursday January 24th, Twitter launched a new mobile app called “Vine”. Vine allows users to create short 6 second looping videos as animated gifs. The short clips can include sound and can be shared on Twitter and other social networks. Unfortunately Vine is only available on iOS devices for the time being, but Twitter is working to expand this to other devices.