Netflix tests original show marketing with reminder Twitter messages
Netflix is testing a new way to remind subscribers to watch their original shows. A custom card for upcoming show Marco Polo is being used on Twitter to promote the show, complete with a "Tweet Me a Reminder" button. According to The Next Web, the @MarcoPoloMP Twitter account will be sending a message to anyone who opts in to the service at 12:01AM Pacific Time on December 12th, with participants also receiving a custom video message from the cast.
Flagging abuse on Twitter becoming easier to perform with simpler process
Twitter is updating the way it handles abusive tweets by making changes to its harassment reporting system, both on the public and internal sides. The microblogging service is starting to roll out a more mobile-friendly way of flagging abusive tweets, while a new blocked accounts page within the website's settings menu aims to help users manage who can or cannot contact them.
Posts $175 million net loss, average monthly active users increase by 13 million
Twitter posted its third quarter results for fiscal year 2014, posting $361.2 million in revenue. Revenue was up compared to the same quarter in 2013, with quarter-on-quarter results improving by approximately $49 million. The company beat out analyst projections of $351.35 million, but posted lower than the $0.01 earnings per share (EPS) expected with a loss of $0.29 EPS.
Twitpic still shuttering, service in 'read only' mode for now
With time ticking down before the permanent shutdown of Twitpic, the company has announced that it has agreed to an acquisition offer by Twitter itself. The arrangement keeps the domain and photo archive accumulated by the service intact, and this keeps "the photos and links alive for the time being" according to a blog post announcing the deal. The service is not completely rescued, however, as the service is still shutting down ultimately, and in "read-only mode" for now.
Digits offered in Twitter's Fabric development kit, uses only a phone number
Twitter has started putting the pieces into place to distance users from password requirements with the announcement of Digits. The company unveiled the new platform at its first mobile developer conference in San Francisco today, as a part of its Fabric suite of development tools. Rather than relying on a username and password for every app, Digits uses a telephone number and text messages to confirm identities instead.
Frustrated developer complaints cause removal of game from sale on Steam
[Update: Mike Maulbeck is stepping down from the company] A game has been pulled from the Steam store, after the developer threatened to kill Valve Software's co-founder, Gabe Newell. Mike Maulbeck, the creator of Paranautical Activity, was frustrated at how his creation was incorrectly labeled in the Steam store as an Early Access game, and during a tirade against Valve and Steam on Twitter, wrote "I am going to kill Gabe Newell. He is going to die."
Online abuse proposals quadruple current maximum prison sentences
The government of the United Kingdom is attempting to increase the possible penalties for online harassment, following recent high-profile reports of "trolling" in the country. The proposals, an amendment to the Criminal Justice and Courts Bill undergoing the latter stages of parliamentary debate, potentially allows for people convicted for trolling to face prison sentences of up to two years, up from the current six-month maximum.
Acquisition of TwitPic notification premature, shutdown rescheduled
Twitter image hosting site TwitPic has failed in its efforts to be acquired, and will be shutting down after all. Discussions over the last-minute acquisition failed, with the company announcing on its blog that it will wind up operations and take the service entirely offline on October 25th, one month after its original closure date, giving users just over a week to back up images stored on TwitPic servers.
BPCE, Twitter preparing to launch money transfers via tweets
Twitter users in France will soon be able to send money to other users by tweeting, according to a report. Groupe BPCE, the second-largest bank in France based on customer numbers, will apparently start providing simple person-to-person transfers of funds within the country, with the sender able to pass funds along to other people without knowing any of the recipient's bank information.
Twitter lawsuit accuses FBI, DOJ of First Amendment violations
Twitter has launched a suit against the US government. The lawsuit, filed in the US District Court of Northern California, demands that Twitter's full transparency report about law enforcement requests be published in its entirety, and that restrictions placed on what may be disclosed are illegal under the First Amendment of the US Constitution.
Twitter app for OS X updated, adds new photo features
Twitter for Mac has received an update today, adding new photo features for OS X users. The app allows users to access the social media platform outside of a web browser. Twitter for Mac v3.1 includes the new ability to view and post Tweets with up to four photos at a time, with an image preview for each available for viewing the full photo. Photos can now be shared privately in the Messages section. Various performance improvements and bug fixes are also available in the latest version. Free to download, Twitter for Mac is available through the App Store.
Apple Store app adds support for iPhone 6
Apple's Store app has been updated to reflect its updated iOS and latest iPhone release. Users of the Apple Store app can now start their Retail Store order on their own device, featuring a Browse function that displays trending products, as well as reviews for accessories. Apple Store v3.0.1 offers compatibility with the latest Apple mobile devices, including support for iPhone 6. Free to download, the Apple Store app is available on iTunes.
Social media, commerce combination adds to previous Amazon cart initiative
Amazon and Twitter teamed up again for another commerce experience within the micro blogging platform. Similar to the previous initiative that the two companies launched earlier this year, users can reply to a tweet with a certain hashtag to add an item to their Amazon wish list. The only catch is that it only works with tweets that have links to the item on Amazon, while also required Twitter and Amazon accounts to be linked.
No details available on acquisition or company behind it, no legal plan stated
It turns out that TwitPic won't be forced to shut down after all, according to a tweet sent out on the official TwitPic Twitter account. Apparently, an interested party came to the rescue by acquiring the company, allowing it to fight off its recent conflict with Twitter -- at least for now. TwitPic was previously said to be winding down on September 25 as a result of a trademark dispute with Twitter.
Social media company evolves to include more commerce models, give exclusive offers
Twitter appears to be diving deeper in to the pool of commerce as the social media company announced today that it was beginning a new test of a "buy" button. A previous version of the button appeared in small-batch testing that appeared in June and in a mock-up dating back to January, but it's only now being officially announced by Twitter.
Bot system results in 40-percent spam reduction, rule changes issued in seconds
Social microblogging service Twitter offered details on how it battles with spam on the service, showing off a specialized tool that the company made in the process. BotMaker was built by the team, which has so far been responsible for a reduction of 40 percent "in key spam metrics" since its launch. The company went into spill some of the specifics of its creation, something it needed to make since it offers real-time interactions and an exposed developer API.
Company alters help page to reflect change in timeline content from popular, relevant accounts
Twitter users may have seen a number of items showing up in their feeds from users they don't follow for the last few weeks. In what was thought to be one of the company's experiments, tweets from users that aren't followed and random favorites from others were showing up in timelines. It appears that the feature is no longer in testing, as Twitter has added the new feature to its help page about timelines.
Change in Twitter policy to help protect families from malicious imagery
Twitter is now accepting requests to remove images and videos of the deceased. In a change of policy, the service announced it will take down photographs and other materials "in certain circumstances," with requests from immediate family members and other authorized individuals being considered for removal "in order to respect the wishes of loved ones."
Some hashtags now have an explanation attached to them when searched by test users
Social micro-blogging service Twitter was discovered to be testing a new feature recently that demystifies the code of a hashtag. The new feature was discovered in the Twitter iOS app, showing the meaning behind some popular hashtags, including those for television shows, Twitter specific events and video games. The feature could help relieve some confusion when it comes to hashtags, but it's unknown if the feature will be adopted.
Company prototyped several types of apps, decided to take system to Twitter
Madbits, a startup company founded by Clément Farabet and Louis-Alexandre Etezad-Heydari, announced this week that they are taking their technology to Twitter. The company was focused on making computers learn through the use of artificial intelligence, specifically "deep learning" as it readied for a public launch. Details of the deal have not been shared by either company.
Revenues up more than $170 million compared to last year, posts $145 million loss
Twitter released its quarterly results today, showing a strong surge in business during the second quarter of its 2014 fiscal year. The company posted revenues of $312 million, compared to only $139 million during the year-ago quarter. The increase represents a 129 percent increase year-over-year. The social media company also saw an increase in users compared to the results from the previous year.
Updates allow entire direct message history to be seen across apps, consistently deleted
Last week, Twitter announced that it is going to issue an update on how direct messages are handled on the micro-blogging service. The update makes deleting direct messages consistent across all platforms, allowing users a single action for removal, rather than deleting across every interface version. Another update is coming that changes how direct messages are handled across the numerous platforms, to give users access to their complete messaging history.
Social media users could buy products directly from Twitter feed
Twitter is making more of an effort to work with retailers, with two reports claiming the microblogging service is taking two separate approaches. The company acquired Tap Commerce, a marketing firm specializing in redirecting users to mobile apps, while a second report supposedly spotted the service trying out new "Buy Now" buttons next to product images.
Test turns original tweet into a Twitter card, gives users more room for context
A new Twitter feature was spotted in the wild today, featuring a new way for users to retweet. Building upon the need for more information and the lack of space when quoting, Twitter is looking to utilize Twitter Cards to give users more room to comment compared to quoting. By changing the feature, Twitter could grant a more effective way to communicate when retweeting.
SnappyTV purchase bolsters Twitter tools for broadcasters
Messages on Twitter could soon include more video clips from television, thanks to an acquisition by the microblogging service. SnappyTV, a start-up primarily offering tools for quickly spreading TV show clips around on social networks, has been bought by Twitter for an unknown amount, and is likely to help the company involve itself more with television broadcasters.
Web gets in-timeline translations
Twitter has expanded its use of Bing translations, reports note. For the first time, the function has been made available in the official Twitter iOS app, where it will display translated text underneath the original. To get the option to appear, though, a person has to select an individual tweet.
New web profiles for all users, Tweetdeck adds scheduled picture tweets, visibility
Twitter has made a few changes to some of its services recently, namely in the profile pages and its Tweetdeck app. The company announced in April that it was testing a new profile layout for the web, starting with a small user group. These new profiles have now been rolled out to all Twitter users. Tweetdeck has also seen some changes, adding new features to post scheduling within the app.
Agreement integrates Accuen into MoPub for further ad reach, buying
Social media company Twitter has made a move to strengthen its ad division with a $240 million agreement with Omnicom Media Group. The two-year deal will see Omnicom's programmatic ad-buying unit, Accuen, integrated with Twitter's MoPub ad exchange. Twitter had purchased MoPub in September for $350 million in a move to strengthen its advertising arm.
Censorship requests from Pakistan Telecommunications Authority performed by Twitter
Twitter has come under fire for agreeing to requests by a bureaucrat in Pakistan to block certain content from the site. The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) has attacked Twitter for complying with the requests from the Pakistan Telecommunications Authority, suggesting the agency does not have any legal authority to demand the removal of the content.
Chrome for Android improved, adds new features
Google has updated its Chrome browser app for Android devices, most notably adding an Undo Tab Close feature. Also included in the update changelog is new a fullscreen video ability with subtitles and HTML5 controls, support for some multi-window devices, more Chromecast support and other bug fixes. Chrome is free to download through Google Play.
Audio sharing site could be Twitter's second attempt at music, growth solution
Twitter may be taking another stab at the music app business, as it is reportedly in talks with Soundcloud about a possible acquisition. Sources familiar with both companies have said that Twitter is considering a deal that would bring the social audio and music sharing service under its wing. The deal would mark the latest high profile purchase for Twitter, following its previous $350 million deal for MoPub in September 2013.
Move intended to assuage Internet fears of 'fast lane' provisos
Starting at 2PM ET, the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Senior Counsel for External Affairs for the Chairman, Gigi B. Sohn, will be monitoring questions regarding Wheeler's pending net neutrality legislation. Using the hashtag #FCCNetNeutrality, users can submit questions, or follow the discussion led by the FCC's chairman's lead attorney.
Feature makes its way to live apps less than a month after tests discovered
On its blog today, Twitter announced that the recently-tested mute feature is now starting to roll out to all users of the official Android and iOS apps, as well as on Twitter.com. The feature allows users to mute someone from their timeline without unfollowing them or informing the party being muted.
Kik messaging app launches its own virtual currency
Canadian start-up Kik has launched a virtual currency for its messaging app with built-in browser. Kik users can now earn "Kik Points," which both incentivizes in-app activity and allows for buying content. Points can be earned by executing specific tasks, such as inviting friends to the beta, and in turn "buy" in-app content like stamps. Kik is available for download across operating systems.
Google, Facebook, Amazon among coalition asking for FCC to reconsider net rules
A coalition of technology companies have co-signed a letter to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) over its net neutrality proposals. Signed by over a hundred Internet companies, including Google, Microsoft, Facebook, Twitter, Yahoo, and Amazon, the letter asks the FCC to reconsider what the companies claim "represents a grave threat to the Internet."
Twitter users reply to posts with hashtag to add items to Amazon cart
Amazon is expanding its purchasing options, by allowing customers to shop for products by posting on Twitter. Introduced today, users of both services can add items featured on the social media site directly to their Amazon.com cart by responding to specific posts with #AmazonCart, with the product then shown in the checkout section of Amazon's website for later purchase.
Mobile app feature similar to Tweetdeck's muting of followed accounts
A mute feature has started appearing in official Twitter clients for Android and iOS, according to reports, meaning that widespread use of the feature may be available in the near future. The mute feature would allow a user to stop the tweets and retweets of someone they follow from showing up on their timeline.
Claim of Twitter as tax evader follows lifting of ban in Turkey
The Prime Minister of Turkey is continuing to attack Twitter, accusing the microblogging service of tax evasion. In a televised address, Recep Tayyip Erdogan claimed the recent ruling by Turkey's highest court against a ban on the service places the interests and rights of companies ahead of those of Turkey itself, and that his government will "go after" Twitter for supposedly due taxes.
New content-focused Twitter profile pages add post filtering options
Twitter has unveiled its upcoming changes to profile pages, a change that first surfaced in February. Bearing a passing resemblance to Facebook profiles, all user profile pages will receive an update that overhauls the layout of the page, providing larger profile photographs and putting a greater focus and control on the account's more popular tweets and images.
Uber announces UberRush courier service, beginning exclusively in New York City
Ride service app Uber has announced the testing of its new courier service, UberRush. Beginning in New York City, UberRush will appear on users' home screens, allowing customers to have small goods delivered by bike or foot courier. As opposed to an on-demand delivery service that is based on an order, UberRush has couriers picking up objects from Uber users and delivering them to a specific address as determined by the customer. The base fare for deliveries is $15, with delivery zoning factoring in potential additional costs. UberRush will become available to users starting tomorrow.
Messages can be sent to non-Vine users
Twitter-owned Vine has updated its iOS and Android apps with a new direct messaging feature. The option lets people send videos privately, regardless of whether the recipient is a Vine user. People who don't have a Vine account will instead get the videos via SMS or email.
Turkish Constitutional Court rules Twitter ban an attack on free speech
Turkey's telecommunications authority (TIB) has finally lifted its ban of Twitter. The block, which started on March 20st after Prime Minster Recep Tayyip Erdogan threatened to "wipe out" the micro-blogging service, has reportedly stopped with some users able to receive and make new posts after the country's courts intervened for a second time.
Twitter updates to include new tweet date range search option
Social media platform Twitter has added a new element to its search function. On its Advanced Search page, Twitter users can now search for tweets by a date range, making old messages easier to find with a date range estimation. Though this feature was technically available prior to now by including the search terms "since:" and "until:," manual operators are now not required.
Sources cite revamped effort curating discussions, discovery
Even though Twitter is shuttering its #Music service and has yanked the supporting app from the iOS App Store, the microblogging service is preparing a new but similar offering, according to services familiar with the matter. The new service is allegedly forsaking the app-driven approach, and focused on conversations about content, hosted on Twitter itself.
Twitter for iOS and Android updated, adds photo tagging of up to ten people
Twitter announced an update to its mobile apps today, adding the ability to now tag up to ten people in a photo. Available for both iOS and Android app, tagging does not affect character count in a tweet. Up to four photos can be shared in a single tweet, and a full image in a group can be viewed by tapping on a preview. The new photo features rolled out today on iPhone, and are due soon for Android and its web version.
Access to Twitter set to be restored in Turkey later today
Twitter will be available to use once again in Turkey, after a court in the country reversed a decision on the block. The Ankara administrative court has ordered the country's telecommunications regulator (TIB) to lift the ban on the micro-blogging service, one which Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan wanted to "wipe out" to prevent discussion of alleged government corruption.
DNS ban thwarts Turkish citizen workaround of Twitter blockade
Turkey is actively blocking access to Google's DNS service, in order to keep Twitter and allegations of corruption blocked off from the country's citizens. Following its ban of the micro-blogging platform a few days ago, the move is an attempt to thwart efforts by Twitter users from accessing the service via a workaround, though this too may soon be temporarily thwarted.
Social service tried Ping-like crowd-sourced music discovery
Twitter has quietly announced that it will pull the plug next month on its year-old Twitter #music service, which offered users a way to follow and listen to the music of popular artists and up-and-coming discoveries based on crowd-sourced recommendations. The service will be shut down on April 18, and as of Friday afternoon the iOS Twitter #music app was no longer available on the App Store.
Court orders to block Twitter over corruption posts, Facebook could follow
Microblogging service Twitter has been blocked in Turkey, following a court order triggered by the country's Prime Minister. Visitors to the home page are greeted by a message from the Turkish telecommunications regulator, and is all but unusable in the country, as Turkey's leadership attempts to prevent allegations of corruption from spreading between its users and the country's citizens.
LeBron James reveals phone issue in Samsung Twitter mistake
Despite Samsung recently enjoying success with marketing on Twitter as part of the Oscars, the company has suffered a social media misstep. Brand ambassador and Basketball star LeBron James posted a message claiming his phone, a Galaxy Note, "just erased everything it had in it and rebooted," and though Apple Insider notes the tweet was subsequently deleted, it was not removed before a contingent of the star's near-12 million followers retweeted the message. The Twitter account has since claimed data has been restored on the device, but did not detail if there was any intervention by Samsung.