social networking

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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Facebook’s using frosted images for zippy mobile browsing

Facebook’s using frosted images for zippy mobile browsing

Facebook has put a lot of effort into ensuring that its users in developing nations and on slow networks are able to enjoy the service as fully as possible. One way it has done this is with apps that are specifically designed to run on low end handsets, and most recently it has detailed its effort to ensure photo previews load quickly, and with as little data use as possible. The social network did this by eliminating the blank photo preview users would see when waiting for an image to load and replacing it with a very small — and blurred — cover photo preview.

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Facebook Live clones Periscope for celebrities

Facebook Live clones Periscope for celebrities

Facebook has launched its own take on Periscope, Facebook Live, promising to beam the celebrity perspective straight into your newsfeed. The service, limited to public figures with verified pages, turns the Facebook Mentions app into a livecaster: the real-time broadcast keeps track of comments and view counts, while the clips themselves are saved for post-stream viewing later on.

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YouTube ends 301+ view count mystery

YouTube ends 301+ view count mystery

It's the end of an era - YouTube will no longer be stopping view counts on videos at 301+ views. While the comments kept coming, the views stopped. It was a legendary break in the system. Or so people thought. In reality, Google has been automatically stopping views on YouTube videos at 301, checking the views at that point individually to make sure they weren't from spam bots, then releasing the video's counts into the wild. All that ends today.

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Twitter app on iPhone 6 Plus now offers landscape mode

Twitter app on iPhone 6 Plus now offers landscape mode

The official Twitter app for iOS has just rolled out a new option for landscape mode, however it's only for iPhone 6 Plus users. The view is very similar to app's iPad UI, offering a new compose tweet view and a wider interface when navigating the timeline and direct messages. The landscape option doesn't seem to be available to every iPhone 6 Plus user just yet, as Twitter seeming to be rolling it out in stages.

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Facebook’s Security Checkup tool officially launched

Facebook’s Security Checkup tool officially launched

Facebook has pushed out privacy and security checkups over recent months to encourage users to check up on their settings and, if applicable, make changes that improve both. Today the social network has announced the official launch of its Security Checkup tool, which allows users to adjust the security settings on their account. Users will see it as a “Stay Secure on Facebook” box at the top of their newsfeed — it can be dismissed if you’re really not concerned, but going through it is advised.

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Germany orders Facebook to let users choose fake names

Germany orders Facebook to let users choose fake names

Facebook's policy of forcing users to use their real names on the social network has been under fire for some time now from privacy advocates and those in the LGBT community who feel discriminated against. But now a privacy watchdog in Germany has said that is unacceptable in the country, and ordered Facebook to begin allowing users under pseudonyms. The Hamburg data protection authority ruled that the network's real name policy is in violation of Germany's privacy laws.

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Apple shares Beats 1 Radio studio tour on Snapchat

Apple shares Beats 1 Radio studio tour on Snapchat

In unique choice of platform, Apple has used messaging/social media app Snapchat to share several videos offering a behind-the-scenes look at the studios of its Beats 1 radio service, a primary feature of Apple Music. Posted from the Snapchat account name "applemusic," the videos mark a new form of promotion from Apple, letting users see the Beats 1 studios in Los Angeles, New York, and London, and introducing DJs Zane Lowe, Julie Adenuga, and Ebro Darden.

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Yahoo officially outs Livetext, a messaging app with silent videos

Yahoo officially outs Livetext, a messaging app with silent videos

In New York today, Yahoo officially announced a new messaging app for iOS and Android called Livetext. While the app was quietly released in Hong Kong and Taiwan earlier this month for testing, this launch marks its debut in the US, Canada, France, Germany, and the UK. At first glance, Livetext seems to be Yahoo's take on rebuilding its old Messenger service with the Tumblr and Snapchat generation in mind, as the app focuses on a mix text messages and videos with no sound, much like ever-present GIFs.

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