Tag Archives: facebook

Pinpointing When Facebook Users Jumped The Shark

A video from The Onion goes over the new Facebook feature, LifePoint, which can tell you exactly when your life started going south:

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From YouTube, via Laughing Squid

Why Facebook Added Hashtag Support

As you’ve probably heard, last week, Facebook decided to give in to the grammatical abominations that are hashtags, start supporting them, and surely hasten the apocalypse. Here’s how that likely went down — and yes, it probably did involve their brilliant focus group:

Facebook hashtags ripoff Twitter


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Via FAIL Blog

Focus Group From Which Facebook Gets Its Bright Ideas

Facebook is one of the most unpopular companies, and it’s probably because they use focus groups like this one, which produce suggestions like

I wanna know if a friend from out of state is having a birthday party … in that state.

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From YouTube, via Laughing Squid

Sometimes A Comma Is The Difference Between You And A Racist Serial Killer

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Via FAIL Blog

UK Official Recommends Using Fake Info On Facebook

The security chief for the UK government’s network spoke at a conference on Internet policies and gave this piece of advice:

When you put information on the internet do not use your real name, your real date of birth … When you are putting information on social networking sites don’t put real combinations of information, because it can be used against you.

This brought about a good deal of debate on the issue, especially since Google+ and Facebook’s policies explicitly say you’re not allowed to use a fake name on their services. Others were concerned about cyber-bullies, which often do use fake names online, but it was pointed out that people can be found by the government and that the point of using fake info online is to prevent others from stealing your identity. If someone knows your name, address, email, and date of birth, they can do some serious damage.


Back in August, hackers took over a journalist’s online life in one hour, starting with just his Twitter handle — because every personal detail of his they needed was available online. No technical hacking was involved, just plain old social engineering: Twitter led to his website, from where they got his Gmail address. There, they saw his secondary Apple email. His name got them his home address, so they called Amazon customer service and, through clever manipulation, got the last 4 digits of his credit card number. Next, they called Apple, pretended to be him and since they had all the right info, Apple issued them a new password for his email.

Using his Apple email address, they got into his Gmail account with the automated password recovery feature. After they had control of his email addresses, it was simple to recover other passwords. They got into his iCloud account and remotely wiped his phone and computer, deleting everything on them. Finally, they got into his Twitter account, which was the hackers’ only goal: they wanted his Twitter handle. This was actually great news for him, since they could’ve emptied his bank accounts and ruined his real life.

And they did all of this without ever getting into Facebook. Imagine how much easier it would be if someone could look up all that information in the About section of your Facebook profile.

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From BBC and Wired, via Slashdot

All Signs Say Facebook Is In Big Trouble

Just before Facebook’s IPO in the middle of May, GM decided to pull its advertising from the site, saying it’s not effective. The GM advertising chief who made the decision has since quit (for other reasons), and the company said it plans to return to Facebook — though it hasn’t yet. But that snowball was the beginning of an avalanche of trouble for the social network’s revenue stream. Around the same time, NPR did an experiment in which they gave a start-up pizza joint money to advertise on Facebook, to see if it helped sales; the result was a resounding no: after tweaking their ads, they got 250 likes, but only one customer from those likes. A couple of days later, the much-hyped IPO suffered from a NASDAQ glitch and, whether related or not, the stock flopped: it opened at 38$, and within two days, it fell to 31$. That grossly mishandled IPO lost a lot of people a lot of money — UBS lost 357 million dollars.

Facebook made it through June relatively unscathed, but the news in July went from bad, to worse, to even worse:

  • July 12: BBC announced that an investigation of Facebook’s “Likes” system showed that most of them came from spam bots, not actual people. Facebook denied the accusation.
  • July 17: A survey by the American Consumer Satisfaction Index showed people were much happier with Google+ than Facebook. In fact, every social network scored higher than it: LinkedIn, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube, and Wikipedia.
  • July 17: 1.1% of Facebook’s American users left the site.
  • July 20: Google reports that for the third quarter in a row, its revenue per ad has gone down. And it’s not just Google: online ad revenue has been going down across the board, probably as people are getting used to ignoring all the ads. This is particularly bad for Facebook, which makes almost all of its money from advertising. Google, makes most of its money from ads, but has also diversified so that ad sales don’t impact it as much anymore.
  • July 26: Facebook reported its earnings for the first time as a public company. They just barely met expectations, and after the IPO and other bad news, investors decided to call it a day: their stock fell to 23$ — the lowest price yet.
  • July 30: A start-up called Limited Run reported that they’re leaving Facebook because they want to change their page’s name, but Facebook is holding it hostage, unless they buy 2,000$ in ads per month. So they did an experiment to see if it would be worth it, and found out that about 80% of the clicks to their website that came from Facebook, came from spam bots.


Facebook stock from its May 18 IPO to July 31st, 2012


From Forbes, NBC NewsNPR, BBC, The Register, The Atlantic Wire, and The LA Times

Facebook Eavesdrops And Tells On You To The Cops If You’re Bad

Like any good Big Brother, Facebook has to make sure you don’t do anything out of line. After all, as Spiderman taught us, with great power comes great responsibility — and it would be pretty irresponsible for Mark Zuckerberg to not stop statutory rape, drug deals, or movie piracy if he could. And can he ever! After all, everything you say and do on Facebook is stored forever in its metallic memory banks, along with who you said it to and how you know each other.


But thankfully, according to Reuters, our robot overlord tries to protect your privacy from the eyes of other humans and only alerts a warm-blooded person if something looks really suspicious — like if you were going to meet up with a 13 year old girl with no mutual friends after school for some statutory rape. And then, that helpful person calls the cops, sends them your entire Facebook history, and voila! Spiderberg saves another person from the menaces of society. If only cell phone carriers, Skype, Gmail, and heck, even the US Postal Service and UPS did the same thing — think how many lives it would save! Total, automatic surveillance: the utopian panopticon of the future. After all, if you have nothing to hide, what are you worried about?

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From Reuters, via CNET

I Have Timeline

Funny parody of a Valtrex commercial, treating Facebook’s Timeline as if it were herpes:

From YouTube, via Laughing Squid

Future Presidents Already Unelectable

The great thing about The Onion is the large proportion of truth in their ridiculous stories. And unless something changes, the America of the future will be lead by the anti-social, Luddites, or both.



From The Onion

Facebook Is Your Nosy Girlfriend


From imgur