- Millions sign Google’s anti-SOPA petition
Millions of Americans oppose SOPA and PIPA because these bills would censor the Internet and slow economic growth in the U.S. Two bills before Congress, known as the Protect IP Act (PIPA) in the Senate and the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) in the House, would censor the Web and impose harmful regulations on American business. Millions of Internet users and entrepreneurs already oppose SOPA and PIPA. The Senate will begin voting on January 24th. Please let them know how you feel. Sign this petition urging Congress to vote NO on PIPA and SOPA before it is too late.
- Another One Bites the Dust: Virgin Mobile Will Soon Throttle Unlimited Data Users
It seems like all the carriers have banded together to kill the angel known as unlimited data. Even little ‘ol Virgin Mobile has joined the murder party, informing their customers that as of March 23rd, Virgin Mobile will throttle users who pass the 2.5GB data threshold. That supposedly effects 3% of their customers. Et tu, Virgin?
- Facebook Relaunches Timeline, Timeline Apps
On Wednesday, Facebook officially relaunched its “Timeline Apps,” social applications that will plug into the Facebook Timeline and update your friends via the new Ticker.The apps are part of the Facebook Timeline, which received a relaunch of sorts from Facebook at a San Francisco event Wednesday night. Over 60 partners now provide apps for Facebook, which will generate their own “verbs” on the Facebook Ticker.Each app will come with its own permissions, Sjogreen said, along with an explanation of what activity will be shared. Users have the option of not sharing anything with a given app, using it as a private application, he said.Each Ticker event uses some verb: “Joe is playing FarmVille,” for example. Ticker events are published after a user signs up for a Facebook social application, like FarmVille, or a music service like Rdio. If a user is playing a game, the Ticker posts will become more context-specific, and highlight gameplay from friends.The actions are signaled by a corresponding Timeline application, which users have to select and opt into. The social apps that Facebook has showed off are allowed to publish actions to a user’s Ticker, announcing that “Jim,” for example, “just bought” tickets to the 49ers-Giants playoff game, or that “Diane nommed” a dish she found on Foodspotting.
- Five things to know before using Facebook Timeline apps
But before you add these attractive new apps, consider the way Open Graph works and how exactly it will affect your Facebook experience.1. Beware of “frictionless sharing.”
A term originally coined at F8, “frictionless sharing” is the new permissions protocol, which says that apps only need initial approval to post activities on your behalf. Once you install the app and authorize it to post stories on your profile and News Feed, it’ll never ask for your permission again. Pausing and resuming activity-sharing for any given app will depend on the app developer (like Spotify’s “private listening”), but you do have ongoing control over which audiences see these activities. Be sure to select which friends you’d like to share with when installing an app.2. Your activity will be seen everywhere.
With Open Graph, app activities will now appear in the News Feed, Ticker, and on your Facebook profile. Why? Facebook hopes that by sharing your activity everywhere, your friends will be more likely to install apps you’re using, further helping brands increase awareness. In the example below, a user installs a recipe app and his or her recipe activities are shared across the Facebook platform.3. Your Timeline might not appear in chronological order.
Graph Rank, the algorithm that decides which posts are deemed “Top Stories” will also affect your Timeline. BetaBeat reports that “…things are laid out by year and by month. But, when it comes to what’s displayed to your social circle at any given time, other metrics, including direct payments to Facebook itself, will now influence the ranking and placement of stories. This means that even if your most recent activity was a status update, your jog on the RunKeeper Timeline app might appear above it. The exact placement of activities on your Timeline are dynamic and will shift depending on who visits your Timeline, and (possibly) if Facebook is profiting off that activity.
4. Consider organizing your friends into Lists.
Because the new Timeline apps use “frictionless sharing,” your highest level of security against oversharing will be audience selection. As previously mentioned, you will have the opportunity to select an audience with which to share your activity upon the initial installation of an app (see photo below). In the drop-down list, under “Custom,” you’ll see your friend lists.5. You can always revoke an app’s permissions.
If you decide you no longer want to use an app or want to change its sharing settings, you may do so at any time. Head to the App Settings page and click the “x” next to the app to delete it, or click “Edit” to change the audience selection.