Posts tagged & Twitter

Twitter Releases New iPhone App Just In Time For iOS 8 by @mattsouthern

A day after Facebook unveiled a new iOS app, Twitter releases an updated app for iPhone users just in time for iOS 8. The updated app, rolling out today, promises to make it easier to explore and learn about other people on Twitter. The company claims it is their biggest update to date, featuring a new design and revamped profile pages. The new profiles have been designed to emphasize your bio, tweets, and photos so people can quickly digest everything that’s important to know about you at a glance. The bio is immediately visible as soon as you land on […]

The post Twitter Releases New iPhone App Just In Time For iOS 8 by @mattsouthern appeared first on Search Engine Journal.

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Twitpic Lives! Mystery Hero Buys Twitter Photo Host

Don’t mourn Twitpic. The popular service will continue to host images and video on Twitter thanks to an acquisition, the company tweeted Thursday.

This is the company’s first tweet since Sept. 4, when it announced it would be shutting down on Sept. 25 following a copyright skirmish with Twitter. The micro-blogging giant decided now was the time to take action against Twitpic, although the startup has been around since 2008.

“Unfortunately we do not have the resources to fend off a large company like Twitter to maintain our mark which we believe whole heartedly is rightfully ours,” founder Noah Everett wrote. “Therefore, we have decided to shut down Twitpic.”

See also: Twitpic, Already Sidelined By Twitter, Shuts Down After Trademark Spat

Now it looks like the acquisition will give the company the resources it needs to stay in business. Twitpic has not revealed any other details, or even the identity of the buyer.

Twitpic’s news comes as an apparent relief; as of publication, the announcement tweet had more than 4,000 retweets.

Lead image by Homard.net

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Twitter Debuts New Mobile Profiles For iPhone

Your Twitter profile is going to look a bit different to users on iPhones. 

On Thursday, Twitter rolled out a new look for user profiles on iPhones that puts user information—including profile photo, about section, and tabs for tweets, photos and favorites—all in one place. 

People will now be able to find out more about Twitter users with just a glance and the streamlined profile.

Instead of swiping at the top of Twitter profiles to see more information about a new follower, and tapping multiple times to view a person’s important information, you can now view it without switching windows. 

The tabs for tweets, photos and favorites are at the top of the new profiles, but once you start scrolling down the timeline, they’ll remain at the top of the screen for simple tabbing from one section to another.

iPhone users on iOS 7 and above should see the new profiles immediately. Twitter on iOS 8 will also now let you reply to tweets, follows or messages directly from an iOS 8 notification, thanks to new features in Apple’s mobile software.

There’s no word yet on whether or when Twitter might bring the new profiles to, or make use of active notifications on, Android.

Photo by Anthony Quintano; graphic courtesy of Twitter

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Facebook Takes Another Tip From Twitter And Pushes Trendy Topics

Just because Twitter wants to be more like Facebook doesn’t mean Facebook doesn’t want to be more like Twitter. 

About a month after Twitter started aping Facebook, shoving “curated” tweets in your timeline and suggesting strangers you should follow, Facebook is now getting into the “trending topics” game we know from that other social network. 

Posts on trending topics (and weighed for timeliness) will now appear higher in your news feed, Facebook announced on Thursday

If a post from a friend or Page you follow is about something lots of people are talking about, Facebook will put that post right up top where you can’t miss it. That way, you can engage while the topic is still relevant. 

This is no willy-nilly change, either. Early testing shows this leads to six percent more engagement, the company said in a blog post.

Also see: Can Anyone Remember Facebook’s Last Original Idea?

What’s more, Facebook will now not only look at the number of “Likes” or comments a certain post receives, but also when most of the activity occurred. If a lot of people comment right after the post appeared, and then those comments or “likes” grind to a halt, Facebook’s updated algorithm will take that as a sign that the post was timely, but isn’t any more. That means the post will appear high in your news feed while the traffic is happening, and sink once the traffic slows down or grinds to a halt. 

Likely, this change isn’t meant so much to benefit you, but Pages in particular. Pages, which often represent brands, are having a hard time getting much attention without paying for it. Facebook’s latest algorithm update help Pages reach a broader audience. That is, if those pages are posting about breaking news and events.

You’ll also likely start seeing more posts from your friends that may coincide with real-time events, like football games, television shows, or breaking news—just like the posts you might find on Twitter. 

Image by Find Your Search

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Twitter Releases Update To Tailored Audiences: New Audience List Upload, Audience Manager, And More by @mattsouthern

Twitter has announced their released an update to their tailored audiences retargeting tool that’s designed to make it even easier to create, manage and activate your tailored audiences on Twitter. The key features of this update include audience list upload capability, better audience management tools, new supported ID types for creating audiences — specifically, mobile advertising IDs and mobile phone numbers — and improved targeting options to help advertisers reach additional users similar to their existing audiences. Audience creation and management With this update you can now directly create new list audiences (and manage existing audiences) on ads.twitter.com, through Twitter’s […]

The post Twitter Releases Update To Tailored Audiences: New Audience List Upload, Audience Manager, And More by @mattsouthern appeared first on Search Engine Journal.

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Twitter Officially Introduces The ‘Buy’ Button by @mattsouthern

Just a couple of weeks ago we reported that Twitter was strongly rumored to be gearing up to introduce a ‘buy’ button that could be embedded into tweets to encourage customers to buy products. Now, Twitter has officially announced that they are starting to roll out the rumored buy button to a select amount of US users. Today we are beginning to test a new way for you to discover and buy products on Twitter. For a small percentage of U.S. users (that will grow over time), some Tweets from our test partners will feature a “Buy” button, letting you […]

The post Twitter Officially Introduces The ‘Buy’ Button by @mattsouthern appeared first on Search Engine Journal.

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Soon You’ll Be Able To Buy Stuff Via Twitter

After months of speculation and high-profile hires, Twitter is finally moving into e-commerce. On Monday, the company announced it is testing a way for users to buy stuff directly from a tweet.

Rumors of the company’s move into payments have circulated for months. Now, Twitter joins Facebook in testing a “Buy” button functionality that enables users to purchase things from their mobile device with just a few taps.

The test will let people click “Buy” on tweets from a small set of nonprofits, retailers, and musicians. Only a “small percentage” of U.S. users will see tweets with “Buy Now” buttons, but it plans to expand the test’s reach over time, the company said in a blog post.

Twitter is partnering with Stripe for payment processing, confirming reports in January. In July, the company acquired payments startup CardSpring, which provides developer tools to simplify adding payment services to apps and products.

Merchants who want to put a “Buy” button in tweets will need to sign up with Stripe for now, but Twitter is planning on expanding to include other payments processors. 

How Does It Work?

Twitter can make the buying process as simple as just a few taps, because it will save your credit- or debit-card numbers. The first time you buy something, Twitter will encrypt your account data and store it on its servers. That will be the only time you’ll have to type in your payment data.

See Also: Why Twitter Shouldn’t Bother With E-Commerce

The company says none of your information will be shared with sellers unless you explicitly allow it to, and it’s easy to delete such information from Twitter’s privacy settings page.

There’s no doubt advertisers will be quick to jump on board with a “Buy” button, but actually getting people to purchase things will be another trick altogether

Twitter’s early attempts to get into e-commerce have been lukewarm at best. Considering that the majority of users go to Twitter to read and watch information about current events and get updates from friends, not to spend money, convincing them to embrace Twitter as an e-commerce option might be difficult.

Lead photo by Anthony Quintano; screenshot courtesy of Twitter

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Is a Proposed Twitter Algorithm the Death of “Real Time” on the Social Platform?

CFO Anthony Noto recently said Twitter could be getting a new algorithm, but the question is: Will the new feed improve or harm the Twitter experience?

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Twitpic, Already Sidelined By Twitter, Shuts Down After Trademark Spat

Millions of photo links across Twitter will soon succumb to linkrot. The service Twitpic, once a primary avenue for posting images to the microblogging service, is shutting down.

So get ready to export all your photos, because as of September 25, they’ll be gone for good.

In a blog post, Twitpic said it is winding down because of pressure from Twitter over its name. It claims Twitter demanded it drop its application to trademark the Twitpic name, originally filed in 2009. If it didn’t, Twitter allegedly threatened a death sentence of sorts. Technically, it would have cut off Twitpic’s access to the application programming interface (see our API explainer) that lets users post links to Twitpic images directly on Twitter. 

See also: Twitter Kills The API Whitelist: What It Means For Developers And Innovation

“Unfortunately we do not have the resources to fend off a large company like Twitter to maintain our mark which we believe whole heartedly is rightfully ours,” Twitpic founder Noah Everett wrote. So the company decided to close down instead.

Twitpic hasn’t provided a way to export photos yet, but Everett said the option will be available within the next few days.

The Mark, Not The Name

Twitter says Twitpic was free to continue using its name, but defended its trademark request as necessary to protect its brand. As a Twitter spokesperson put it in a statement emailed by the company:

We’re sad to see Twitpic is shutting down. We encourage developers to build on top of the Twitter service, as Twitpic has done for years, and we made it clear that they could operate using the Twitpic name. Of course, we also have to protect our brand, and that includes trademarks tied to the brand.

One possibility for Twitter’s intransigence on this point: If Twitpic won a trademark on its name, that might have set a precedent for other companies to similarly claim other variations on names starting with “Twit” name. That would obviously be an undesirable outcome from Twitter’s perspective.

So why didn’t Twitpic just keep the name and drop the trademark suit? A company’s unique identity is tied to their brand, and by trademarking a name, it ensures no one else can use it. Had Twitpic caved on this point, there wouldn’t have been anything to stop other companies from using its name in potentially unwelcome ways.

Twitpic could have also chosen to rename itself. Considering Twitter roadblocked the initial trademark attempt, though, it likely would have run into trouble with any other name bearing a resembance to “Twitter” as well.

Twitter-Centric Photo Sharing Apps Are Basically Pointless, Anyway

There may be another reason Twitpic chose to throw in the towel—namely, the fact that its service was apparently dwindling in popularity as Twitter itself shouldered it aside.

Twitpic and similar services such as yFrog rose to prominence five or so years ago by giving users a way to share photos directly on Twitter. But when Twitter dropped support for third-party photo sharing applications in 2012, and then created its own Instagram-like filters for images, third-party applications fell by the wayside.

Until recently, Twitpic remained the best service for uploading animated GIFs to share with friends, as Twitter didn’t support them. Then Twitter unveiled in-line GIF support, and Twitpic’s best argument for sticking around disappeared.

Twitpic might not have the resources to battle with Twitter over trademark issues, but it also may have just resigned itself to the inevitable: Twitter has rounded out its features to the point that users don’t need third-party photo services.

Lead image by Homard.net

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Your Twitter Gender Is Probably Male, Even If You’re Female

Twitter, unlike Facebook, never asks users to share their gender. Yet its recently-public Analytics tool can tell you, among other demographics, the male-female ratio of your followers. That’s because Twitter relies on the magic of algorithms to designate—and perhaps reassign—user gender.

See also: Twitter Unveils A New Time-Waster: Tracking Your Popularity

Now, Twitter is abuzz with how predominantly male their followers seem to be. Just search “Twitter gender” or “Male followers” to see hundreds of surprised tweets about how inaccurate Twitter’s gender-identifying algorithm seems to be.

Glenn Fleishman notes on Boing Boing that even a friend of his whose bio reads “Feminist killjoy” had a 75% male following. His curiosity led him to a 2012 post on Twitter’s advertising blog, which indicates a 90% accuracy rate for targeting Twitter users’ gender:

“Similar to our approach to interest targeting, we’re able to understand gender by taking public signals users offer on Twitter, such as user profile names or the accounts she or he follows. We have strong confidence in this approach. A panel of human testers has found our predictions are more than 90 percent accurate for our global audience.”

In other words, gender on Twitter is determined by behaviors and interests. Though I usually speak to other women on Twitter, my follower ratio is said to be 77% male, though this is probably because my followers are interested in technology, and Twitter is presumably assigning that as a male interest.

My tweets, which are heavy on technology, lead to me getting targeted with advertisements for tech services. But if Twitter ever catches on that I’m a woman, here’s how my experience could change:

Twitter hasn’t responded to ReadWrite’s request for more information on how it determines and assigns gender to users.

There’s no way to opt out of gender assignment on Twitter, perhaps for the same reason there’s no way to opt in. Fortunately, since Twitter’s gender assignment seems largely based on the interests you’re tweeting about, it shouldn’t be too noticeable. It’s just another less-than-politically-correct shortcut to targeted advertising. 

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