Tag Archives | Social Networking

Ten Years From Now, Facebook Will Be Your Bank

bankoffacebook-erica_glasier“Why is its important to have a Facebook profile? They are going to start using that to determine what your credit worthiness is.”

The tin-foil-hatted nuts at BusinessWeek explain how and why Facebook will become the largest bank in the United States. (Perhaps most disturbing is the thought of a universal currency called ‘the zuckerberg’.)

Becoming a financial powerhouse would help Facebook avoid the fate of many once-popular networks. AOL, Friendster, Second Life, and MySpace all dreamed of growing forever, too. To survive, Facebook must become more than glorified e-mail. Sharing photos and gossip with friends might make Facebook hard to leave. But upload your checking account and Facebook may just be forever.

Nongamers may have missed Facebook’s clever foray into the world of “virtual currency,” where Facebook Credits cost 10 cents each and can be exchanged for game points or cartoony gifts. Those dimes are adding up—the U.S. market for virtual goods will reach $2.1 billion in 2011.

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Bin Laden Tweeter Becomes Internet Sensation

Abbottabad, Pakistan, from Shimla Hill. Photo: Fraz.khalid1

Abbottabad, Pakistan, from Shimla Hill. Photo: Fraz.khalid1

Without realizing, Sohaid Athar tweeted about the attacks on Osama bin Laden from the comforts of his suburban home in Abbottabad. Athar began tweeting his complaints about the noise disturbance from helicopters he heard about his home. After a few tweets, Athar and his followers began connecting the information of non-Pakistani helicopters and loud, vibrating, sounds in the area to the reported assassination of bin Laden. Athar was the first on the internet to publish real-time updates on the attack. Via The Raw Story:

An IT consultant who hoped for a quiet life in a summer resort town in Pakistan has become an Internet sensation as the first to report the attack on the world’s most wanted man.

Sohaib Athar was just another witty voice on micro-blogging site Twitter until he heard the sound of helicopters near his home in a Abbottabad, 30 miles (50 kilometres) north of Islamabad early Monday.

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Technology Addiction Taking Its Toll

Windows Phone 7 mockupAfter getting a smart phone last year, I too feel the effects of technology addiction. It snuck up on me. I now feel like I spend a large portion of my day moving from one of three screens: my television, laptop, and cellphone. I find myself checking my collection of news sites and blogs, as well as my social networks quite often throughout the day. I’d say at least once an hour, if not more. While it has opened up many doors to knowledge and communication it also makes me wonder what exactly the implications of such a lifestyle change will have on my generation’s future mentality and health. Keeping a phone in my pocket right next to my…sensitive areas? We’re the guinea pigs to the virtual future.

Anybody else a little cautious about the 21st Century level of connectedness? Share your views down in the comments. Discovery News reports:

Many young Asians are finding it tough to cope without a gadget in hand.

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Seeing Other People’s Happy Lives On Facebook Makes Us Depressed

joyA new study suggests that viewing everyone else’s cheery updates and pictures on Facebook makes us feel even worse about our own crummy existences. Of course, online sharing often takes the form of a sort of competitive, veiled bragging, an effort to make it appear that we’re having fun and finding fulfillment. Slate explains:

“Misery Has More Company Than People Think,” a paper in the January issue of Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, draws on a series of studies examining how college students evaluate moods, both their own and those of their peers. Led by Alex Jordan, who at the time was a Ph.D. student in Stanford’s psychology department, the researchers found that their subjects consistently underestimated how dejected others were–and likely wound up feeling more dejected as a result. Jordan got the idea for the inquiry after observing his friends’ reactions to Facebook: He noticed that they seemed to feel particularly crummy about themselves after logging onto the site and scrolling through others’ attractive photos, accomplished bios, and chipper status updates.

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Is Twitter Suppressing Discussion Of WikiLeaks?

Ah the irony: social networking sites were heralded as the savior of democracy, transparency, and change — but perhaps that’s only the case when the villain is conveniently a U.S. enemy such as Iran.

Today, there are growing grumblings that Twitter is attempting to suppress the spread of WikiLeaks discussion by removing it from “trending topics” lists. Starting with a volcanic surge in popularity on November 28, the hashtag #WikiLeaks has been white-hot on Twitter. And yet, it hasn’t made a blip on Twitter’s Trends list, which has been occupied by far less popular topics. Has Twitter caved to anti-WikiLeaks pressure à la PayPal and Mastercard? There’s a full explanation at Student Analysis.

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China Sentences Woman To Labor Camp For A Twitter Post

A little birdie told me that Twitter is capable of ‘disturbing social order.’ The New York Times reports:

A Chinese woman was sentenced to one year in a labor camp Wednesday after she forwarded a satirical microblog message that urged recipients to attack the Japanese pavilion at the Shanghai World Expo, human rights groups said Thursday.

The woman, Cheng Jianping, 46, was accused of “disturbing social order” for resending a Twitter message from her fiancé that mocked young nationalists who held anti-Japanese rallies in several cities last month. The original message sarcastically goaded protesters to go beyond the smashing of Japanese products and express their fury at the heavily policed expo site.

Ms. Cheng added the words “Charge, angry youth.”

Ms. Cheng was seized last month in the southeastern city of Wuxi on the same day as her fiancé, Hua Chunhui. Mr. Hua, who was released five days later, told reporters the two had planned to marry on the day of their detention.

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Japanese Men Vacation With Virtual Girls

Is this the future in a world where we socialize online rather than in person? Daisuke Wakabayashi reports for the Wall Street Journal:

ATAMI, Japan—This resort town, once popular with honeymooners, is turning to a new breed of romance seekers—virtual sweethearts.

Since the marriage rate among Japan’s shrinking population is falling and with many of the country’s remaining lovebirds heading for Hawaii or Australia’s Gold Coast, Atami had to do something. It is trying to attract single men—and their handheld devices…

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3 Colombians on Facebook Hit List Killed

The famous social networking site has been turned into a virtual threatening network. When the first list was posted on the site authorities thought it was a joke, but if I received an e-mail notification stating my name on a hit list, I would not be laughing. CNN reports:

Three teens who were on a 69-name hit list posted on Facebook have been killed in the past 10 days in a southwestern Colombian town, officials say.

Police say they do not know who posted the list or why the names are on it. “It is still not clear,” Colombian national police spokesman Wilson Baquero told CNN. “This is part of the investigation.”

But officials note that a criminal gang known as Los Rastrojos and a Marxist guerrilla group called the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia operate in the area.

The hit list on Facebook, which was posted August 17, gave the people named three days to leave the town of Puerto Asis or be executed, said Volmar Perez Ortiz, a federal official whose title is defender of the public.

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North Korea Tweets

koreatweetAfter the launch of North Korea’s YouTube channel (majority of which are postings of government propaganda) the country has created a Twitter account. It’s nice to see that North Korea is taking a steps towards joining the global internet community, next step, joining the rest of the global community. BBC News reports:

Last Thursday, the North Koreans created a Twitter account – @uriminzok, a shortened version of a Korean word that translates as “our people”.

It already has more than 4,500 followers.

The move to Twitter follows last month’s launch of a North Korean YouTube channel, which now hosts close to 80 videos.

“The North Koreans are technologically literate,” says Hazel Smith, a long-time North Korea researcher at Cranfield University in Britain.

Ms Smith says that the North Koreans have been investing heavily in information technology now for more than 20 years.

“They have a cadre of people who can use modern social networking sites.

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