social

AMBER alerts are coming to your Facebook timeline

AMBER alerts are coming to your Facebook timeline

You spend a lot of time staring at your phone or tablet — and that’s alright. We do, too. Sometimes, the more important details of life can get past you, though. To better serve the public interest, Facebook is announcing a partnership with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children to bring AMBER alerts to your timeline. In bringing alerts to your news feed, Facebook promises not to overwhelm you. Rather than feed you blanket alerts, you’ll get ones specific to your area, and where a targeted search is being executed.

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Reddit brings custom avatars, link notifications

Reddit brings custom avatars, link notifications

Reddit can be a wonderful place. It can also be a weird, disturbing stop on the Internet, but today’s news might encourage more users to spend time there. A few new features are coming to Reddit, one of them a graduate of Reddit Gold, the service’s paid-beta program. The other is going into Gold, and will probably encourage more sign-ups, as well as make the social entity a bit more — well, social. If you’re into Reddit’s cute little mascot, that is.

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Polaroid, Blipfoto team up for one-a-day photo sharing platform

Polaroid, Blipfoto team up for one-a-day photo sharing platform

Perhaps drawing inspiration from their Cube, Polaroid is again going small. This time, they’re teaming up with Blipfoto to bring you a photo sharing community. the joint venture is a sort of re-introduction of both companies as they attempt to make themselves relevant in our mobile world. The Blipfoto community, like Polaroid, is nothing new, but in need of a refreshed image. The share-once-a-day forum will bring a re-hashed look for mobile, where Blipfoto is available on both Android and iOS (and the web).

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Twitter “While You Were Away” rolling out to some users

Twitter “While You Were Away” rolling out to some users

No, this isn't a title for the next thriller film. Twitter is starting to spread a new feature to its users that ensures that you will be up to date on what happening, even when you're not really paying attention. But while "While You Were Away" may feel heaven sent for those who want to stay abreast of whatever happens around them, even when they can't spend the whole day monitoring their timelines, some users have found the concept and its implementation rather confusing.

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Twitter comes under fire for new ad campaign

Twitter comes under fire for new ad campaign

Leave it to Captain Kirk to stir up trouble. Star Trek actor William Shatner took to Twitter today to complain about — well, Twitter. Their latest advertising move has ruffled some feathers, where the micro-blogging platform is essentially selling your friendship. By putting promoted accounts in your ‘Following’ list, Twitter is taking an interesting trip down a dark path. The first offender is MasterCard, where Shatner noticed they’d popped up in his Following list, though he didn’t follow them at all.

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Google+ for iOS brings new sharing option, HD

Google+ for iOS brings new sharing option, HD

Google’s own social network, Google+, has been updated for iOS users. The new-look social app brings in a higher resolution to better support the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, as well as some updated (and much needed) sharing options. The sharing is interesting because it adapts a very Android-y feature found in iOS 8, giving you the ability to add Google+ to your sharing options. Google+ users on iOS will also get the ability to vote on polls.

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Facebook Groups testing ‘Sell Something’ button

Facebook Groups testing ‘Sell Something’ button

Facebook Groups is a strange (but cool) little app. You can exist within your own group, or join a new one blindly based on a common interest.. A new feature might hint at why Facebook created Groups, though, or at least something they had in mind when launching it. A “Sell Something” button has popped up next to the “Write Post” button for some users, which brings up a very Craigslist-like posting window. Users can add a picture of the item they’re trying to unload, along with pickup or delivery options.

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Netflix app update brings Android Wear integration, social features

Netflix app update brings Android Wear integration, social features

Between its myriad content announcements, Netflix has been releasing somewhat regular updates to its various apps. We recently saw 1080p arrive for the company's iOS app, for example, and back in September it announced a Social Recommendation feature for Apple products, the Xbox and PS3, and some other devices. Now, finally, the video streaming service has announced some new social features for Android users, including the ability to send a friend a "thank you", and Android Wear integration.

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Instagram has 300 million active users, may be bigger than Twitter

Instagram has 300 million active users, may be bigger than Twitter

Instagram has announced via a blog post they are (probably) larger than Twitter. Their service has grown to well over 300 million users, but the real story is how many are using it. According to Instagram, they have a monthly active user number almost as high as their overall user metrics. At 284 million users monthly, they’ve likely outpaced Twitter. Put that way, it’s easy to see why Twitter recently copied the very thing people like about Instagram, rolling in the same filters and ease-of-use.

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Google+ adds custom gender option to profiles

Google+ adds custom gender option to profiles

If you've been putzing around in Google+'s settings today, you might have noticed some new options under "Gender". Google software engineer Rachael Bennett announced on the company's social site today the arrival of "an infinite number of ways" for users to display their gender identity. Previously those who didn't want to use the "male" or "female" options were only given an "other" selection, but now there are four options, one of which is customizable.

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