Facebook is tweaking the News Feed to crack down on ‘alternative facts’

By Tuesday, January 31, 2017 0 Permalink 0

Facebook is switching up its algorithm in its ongoing battle to rid the social network of fake news.

The company announced a change Tuesday that would boost posts “that people consider genuine and not misleading, sensational or spammy” above others in its users’ News Feeds.

SEE ALSO: Facebook fake news features will also be available in Germany

To do this, Facebook is adding more markers to each post that will signal to its algorithms whether or not a post’s information is authentic. Part of that is determined by the source page — the company will take into account whether it regularly posts spam or if it tries to game feed placement by asking for “likes” or comments. ; Read more…

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Is it legal for authorities to check your social media at the U.S. border?

By Tuesday, January 31, 2017 0 Permalink 0

If you’re not from the United States, U.S. government officials may request your phone at the border. They may scroll through your Facebook feed. They may search your phone contacts. But according to lawyers, whether or not this is actually legal is a confusing mess. ;

According to immigration lawyers Mashable spoke with on Monday, the law is, at best, unclear on whether government officials can comb through pieces of your digital life to determine whether you are allowed to set foot in the country. ;

SEE ALSO: Trump’s political appointees will vet EPA’s scientific work before release

Right now, immigration lawyers told Mashable that government officials often ask for immigrants and foreign travelers to hand over their phone so the official can scroll through social media information and more. But if that practice were to come up against a serious legal test — or if the practice became more widespread — lawyers say it would likely run into huge legal hurdles. ; Read more…

More about Immigrants, Traveler, Foreign Policy, Muslim, and Executive Order

India is bringing free Wi-Fi to more than 1,000 villages this year

By Tuesday, January 31, 2017 0 Permalink 0

India’s government is joining everyone else in bringing internet connectivity to its citizens.

SEE ALSO: This country downloaded and used the most Android apps in 2016

The government has chalked out an initiative called Digital Village, as part of which it aims to bring free Wi-Fi internet access to 1,050 villages across the country in the next six months. ;

The initiative is estimated to cost over Rs 4.2 billion ($62 million) and will be carried out through partnerships with several internet service providers, according to Aruna Sundararajan, secretary at the ministry of electronics and information technology. ; Read more…

More about Facebook, Google, Wifi, Internet, and India

Woman unhappy about the cost of weed complains to the wrong people

By Tuesday, January 31, 2017 0 Permalink 0

When you’re annoyed about the cost of weed going up, who should you talk to? Probably anyone else, but the police.

The folks at Australia’s Northern Territory Police received an “unusual” phone call from a woman complaining about the cost of marijuana from her local drug dealer increasing.

SEE ALSO: Cops ask owner to claim 5-pound bag of weed

“Completely offended, the woman demanded that police investigate this ‘outrageous’ price hike. When asked for further details, the woman hung up,” the police Facebook post reads.

Unsurprisingly, there were plenty of people who had a giggle at the odd request. Read more…

More about Facebook, Police, Drugs, Marijuana, and Australia

Google recalls staff abroad as Trump’s Muslim ban takes effect

By Saturday, January 28, 2017 0 Permalink 0

President Donald Trump’s “Muslim ban” is causing fear and chaos among immigrants everywhere — even at Google. ;

As immigrants, visa holders and refugees tried frantically to make it into the United States after Trump signed an executive order banning entry to the U.S. from seven majority Muslim countries on Friday, Google moved to protect its own staff. ;

Google CEO Sundar Pichai told staffers that more than 100 employees were affected by the ban and ordered all affected employees who were abroad to return stateside immediately, Bloomberg reported. ;

“It’s painful to see the personal cost of this executive order on our colleagues,” Pichai wrote in a memo to Google staff obtained by Bloomberg. “We’ve always made our view on immigration issues known publicly and will continue to do so.” Read more…

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Mark Zuckerberg: ‘I’m concerned’ about Trump immigration order

By Friday, January 27, 2017 0 Permalink 0

Mark Zuckerberg is finally speaking out against Donald Trump. ;

The Facebook CEO said he was “concerned” about the recent executive order on immigration signed by Donald Trump. ;

“We need to keep this country safe, but we should do that by focusing on people who actually pose a threat. Expanding the focus of law enforcement beyond people who are real threats would make all Americans less safe by diverting resources, while millions of undocumented folks who don’t pose a threat will live in fear of deportation,” Zuckerberg wrote in a Facebook post.

Zuckerberg also called out refugees — noting that his wife’s family came to America as refugees from China and Vietnam — saying “we should also keep our doors open to refugees and those who need help.” Read more…

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Pinterest, Sargento Kick Off Pinterest MVPP: Most Valuable Party Planner Microsite

By Friday, January 27, 2017 0 Permalink 0

Pinterest created something to do with the 8 million football party ideas and 58 million football ideas users have saved prior to Super Bowl LI Feb. 5.

The social network developed the Pinterest MVPP: Most Valuable Party Planner microsite, sponsored by Sargento, which enables users to create custom boards with Super Sunday recipes, tips and fashion suggestions, just by answering a few questions.

Visitors to the Pinterest MVPP are asked whether they are a rookie or pro at party planning; if their style is “can’t beat the classics” or “let’s shake things up”; and whether they are rooting for the New England Patriots or Atlanta Falcons.

Pinterest then uses its Pinterest API (application-programming interface) to curate custom content and add profile details including names and photos.

Sargento senior digital marketing manager Cami Schenck said in a Pinterest for Business blog post:

Partnering with Pinterest for one of the biggest entertaining events of the year helps us bring more value to consumers. Party planners go to Pinterest first to find the perfect game-day dishes, and we want to help fans create the best “homegating” experience using delicious serving ideas and recipes from Sargento.

Alastair Cotterill, global head of The Studio at Pinterest, spoke with Lauren Johnson of SocialTimes parent Adweek, saying:

We started looking at our insights and saw the different things that people come to Pinterest to plan and get inspired in advance. For sports events, they tend to come about a week before.

This is a trend that we’re working with lots of brands on—how to create experiences that make sense with how people are using Pinterest but also ones that are personalized and tailored.

In terms of driving people to the experience, Sargento wanted Promoted Pins, and we also have some media outside of Pinterest. Sargento has a broader campaign that this is part of.

Readers: Will you use Pinterest to help plan your party for the “Big Game?”

How LinkedIn Markets on LinkedIn (Infographic)

By Friday, January 27, 2017 0 Permalink 0

Brands looking for the most effective ways to market via LinkedIn can now follow the example of a company that knows a little something about LinkedIn: LinkedIn.

The professional network teamed up with Column Five on an infographic containing information from new e-book The Secret Sauce: How LinkedIn Uses LinkedIn for Marketing, including:

LinkedIn A/B tested a sponsored content post–one that included a statistic, and one that did not. The post with the statistic saw a 37 percent higher click-through rate and received 162 percent more impressions.
Using a dynamic macro to pull a member’s name in the greeting, LinkedIn sent personal InMail messages to raise awareness about a blog and received 1,240 blog subscriptions (6 percent of total conversions).
When LinkedIn addressed its audience directly vs. indirectly, it saw a 185 percent higher engagement rate.

Adorable police pug will handcuff you with his cuteness

By Friday, January 27, 2017 0 Permalink 0

Not every dog can make it as a police dog.

SEE ALSO: Study shows dogs love reggae, my dudes

Police dogs have to be highly intelligent and trainable. They are generally medium to large in size. They have great stamina and endurance.

These attributes don’t really apply to pugs. Pugs are small, round and cute. They don’t really scream authoritative or police work.

However, that didn’t stop the Rochester Police Department from welcoming a pug into the police family. Cops posted a picture of Hercules the pug to the department’s Facebook page, and the cutest police dog that ever was went viral.

“He’s a sucker for a belly rub and does not enjoy running,” reads the description of Hercules. This makes sense, as everyone knows a good police dog has to be relatable to the people. Read more…

More about Cute, Dogs, Pugs, Police Dog, and Conversations