The week's need-to-know social-media news.
Twitter has released a new video-tweeting app called Vine. Currently available only to iOS users, the app allows you to record six seconds of video which, when uploaded to Twitter, are viewable directly in a user's Twitter stream.
While Vine could eventually become a useful way to drive engagement with followers through multimedia, the app's launch was marred by a technical glitch that caused some users to be logged into other users' accounts -- apparently giving them access to confidential personal information such as unlisted email addresses and phone numbers. In response, Twitter disabled video sharing to Facebook and Twitter while it worked on the problem. At the time of writing, the glitch appears to be fixed and the app is fully functional again. --
Facebook is hoarding its social data.
Facebook wants to keep your friends -- or at least data about who these people are -- all to itself. The Facebook-integrated "Find Friends" feature was once a standard way for new social startups to grow their user base but the social networking giant has started barring certain companies from using its social data. With Facebook apparently out to crush competitors, entrepreneurs may want to think twice before building a service that depends for its success on Facebook's platform.
Quora gets into blogging.
Social question-and-answer platform Quora will now host blogs organized according to the 300,000 topics by which the site sorts questions. While it doesn't look to be a replacement for Tumblr or WordPress, the advantage is that your audience will be limited only by followers of your topic, not by personal followers. "Because of the topics system, you can come onto Quora as a nobody and be read by tens of thousands of people in a couple of days," company spokesman Marc Bodnick said. --
Facebook beefs up conversion measurements for marketers.
There's positive news for marketers on the Facebook front: The social network has added a new conversion measurement feature that allows advertisers to track shopping cart checkouts and other valuable metrics. "This should be extremely valuable for marketers in ecommerce, retail, travel, financial services and other direct-response industries that value actions taken on their websites," the company said in a blog post. --
Filmmakers find 'riches' through Twitter and Instagram.
As independent filmmakers have discovered, a fragmented media market doesn't mean you can't connect with people who will love your work. Thanks, of course, to the wonders of social media. A panel of filmmakers at the recent Sundance Film Festival discussed how social media outreach efforts -- such as tweet-based promotions and actor-hosted online chats -- had been instrumental to the success of their films. "There [are] 'riches in the niches,' " said director Ava DuVernay, a past Sundance winner. "Segmentation is not a bad thing." --