social networking

Facebook reaches 1-billion users milestone

Facebook reaches 1-billion users milestone

This week Facebook reached a milestone, one that includes 1-billion people having used the social network in a single day. This isn't an average number - as Mark Zuckerberg said in an announcement today - but it is rather important. Facebook has millions of users log in every day, and billions of people using the social network every month, but here for the first time in the website's history 1-billion people used Facebook in a single day.

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Instagram stops being a square, supports landscape & vertical photos

Instagram stops being a square, supports landscape & vertical photos

Instagram has finally gotten with the times and dropped its requirement that photos be in a square format. The social network has updated both its iOS and Android apps and now allows users to post photos in landscape and vertical orientations, in addition to the classic square. The same size change is applied to videos too. This will likely be a welcome change to Instagram users, who for years already have been taking photos and video on devices with rectangular screens.

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Facebook M assistant helps shopping in Messenger

Facebook M assistant helps shopping in Messenger

Facebook is launching its own personal digital assistant, M, with a beta of the chat-based artificial intelligence rolling out today for select Messenger users. Unlike Apple's Siri, M delivers its assistance via text discussion rather than spoken interactions; it's also more focused on shopping, with Facebook positioning it as a way to buy products, have gifts ordered and delivered, and arrange travel.

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$377k Ashley Madison hack bounty amid suspected suicide link

$377k Ashley Madison hack bounty amid suspected suicide link

The hackers behind the huge Ashley Madison leak now have a bounty on their heads, with the company behind the affairs dating site announcing a CA$500,000 reward for catching them. Avid Life Media announced the half-million fund - approximately $377k - this morning in Toronto, promising a big cash jackpot for anybody who can provide information that leads to a successful arrest and prosecution. The offer comes amid unconfirmed reports that two suicides have been linked to the embarrassing leak.

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Google desktop search now shows Tweets and Twitter accounts

Google desktop search now shows Tweets and Twitter accounts

Earlier today Google Search added Tweets from Twitter to their real-time search results on the desktop. This addition was implemented in the mobile Google Search console earlier this year, and is rolling out to desktop interfaces throughout the day. Google's results will now - or will soon, for you - show Twitter's Tweets along with standard search results on your desktop machine, especially when search terms have to do with keywords that are blowing up on Twitter at the time the search is made.

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Facebook Notes wants to marginalize Medium

Facebook Notes wants to marginalize Medium

Facebook is quietly testing new blogging features that could turn its little-known Notes system into a long-form platform, taking on Medium in the process. Notes has allowed for longer statuses to be posted to a Facebook user's profile, shared either publicly or with only certain groups of friends, but a recent upgrade has added greater image, tagging, and other abilities for some users.

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YouTube Live Broadcast revealed: watch out Periscope

YouTube Live Broadcast revealed: watch out Periscope

If Periscope and Meerkat are to be believed, live-streaming video from your point of view is the new big thing, and so YouTube is getting in on the deal. YouTube Live Broadcast, revealed today as a feature on the new Samsung Galaxy Note 5 and Galaxy S6 edge+, turns the smartphone camera into a live-streaming platform. That video can be shared privately with just a few contacts, or alternatively beamed out publicly to anybody with access to your YouTube channel.

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Twitter 140-character limit lifted for DMs

Twitter 140-character limit lifted for DMs

Twitter lifts the character limit on direct messages while the standard Twitter Tweet limit sticks to 140. This update is coming in waves, so don't expect to be able to send a constitutional amendment to your best friend in a DM just yet. You might have to wait until the entire system is updated, which may take a few days. For those lucky enough to be allowed to send longer DMs, the world is now yours. Converse as long as you wish without having to limit yourself to the tyranny of 140 characters or less.

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Facebook breaking news project tipped to take on Twitter

Facebook breaking news project tipped to take on Twitter

Facebook is working on a breaking news project described as being similar to Twitter, according to sources. The project is said to have an app in place and to be at the "alpha" stage. With this, publishers could push out breaking news alerts to users who have downloaded the app (or a reciprocating app; it isn't clear), in effect making the new service a new way for Facebook users to get news through the social network. This follows reports showing that many individuals get their news primarily through Facebook.

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Russia threatening nation-wide Reddit ban over drug posts

Russia threatening nation-wide Reddit ban over drug posts

The Russian government has said it's considering a nation-wide block on the social website Reddit over concerns about easily accessible information on growing and acquiring drugs. One government agency has said it's tried contacting Reddit about removing such posts, but they haven't gotten a response. Oddly enough, the government says it was prompted to take action because of complaints from users. Because surely people go right to the government when they see things on the internet, as this couldn't be a case of Russia wanting to censor information.

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Facebook research shows ‘haha’ is more popular than ‘lol’

Facebook research shows ‘haha’ is more popular than ‘lol’

Facebook has revealed data with a surprising result about how users express laughter these days: "haha" and similar variations are used more than the iconic "lol." The social network analyzed user comments and posts and found that "haha" accounted for 51.4% of laughter expressions. The laughing emoji was next, with 33.8%, followed by "hehe" at 13.1%. Finally, at the very bottom, was "lol" with only 1.9%. Such a steep fall for an expression that still feels like we see everywhere.

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Twitter rolls out emoji for Premier League kickoff

Twitter rolls out emoji for Premier League kickoff

If you're both a Twitter user and big time soccer (football, if you're reading this from outside the US) fan, then there's a whole bunch of new emoji for you to fill your tweets with. The social network is marking the start of the 2015-2016 Premier League with a set of its custom emoji, called hashflags, featuring every team's emblem. So you can show your support for Manchester with #MUFC, or cheer for Southhampton with #SaintsFC.

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