Category Archives: Social Media

News, views, analysis and tips on Social Networking and Social Media. News from Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, Orkut, Digg, Reddit and more.

Twitter’s Web Interface Gets #Dickbar in Google Chrome

Last week released a new update to their iOS based app where they introduced a new floating bar in the app to display trending topics (read ads) to users.

Twitter #Dickbar Web Interface

This new update created an outrage in the tech sphere and even on Twitter itself. Much of the problem with this new bar lay in the fact that it overlapped tweets. This dedicated site http://dickbar.org/ explains what really happened and how this sparked an issue and the new hashtag #Dickbar.

If you aren’t an user, you might have been spared these recent changes, but if you want to know what this looked like you can try out an for which brings the #Dickbar to the web interface. Interested? Go ahead and download it from here.

Rovio Announces Angry Birds for Facebook with New Gameplay

Zynga better watch out! After conquering the iOS App Store and Android Market (as well as Nokia’s Ovi Store and Palm’s App Catalog), Rovio has set its sights on Facebook.

Angry-Birds-Facebook

Rovio Mobile is being fairly tight-lipped about the game. “There will be completely new aspects to it that just haven’t been experienced in any other platform, teased Rovio’s CEO Mikael Hed. It will obviously tap into Facebook’s social features to broaden its appeal. In the past Zynga has very smartly encouraged users to invite their friends, and compete with them (directly or indirectly) to increase its viral factor. Rovio has also hinted that Angry Birds for Facebook will, for the first time, see the pigs in a much more prominent role.

Although Angry Birds is expected to land in Facebook soon, Rovio has confirmed that we won’t be seeing it before April.

Besides Angry Birds for Facebook, Rovio is working on numerous other Angry Birds related projects. A movie and its tie-up game are already under development. Angry Birds for PlayStation Network, Xbox 360 and Wii have also been confirmed. The much awaited sequel is also probably in the cards. Additionally, Rovio is keen to launch several Angry Birds spin-offs, including a racing and a sports game.

Peter Vesterbacka, the mighty eagle of Rovio, believes that, “Angry Bird will be bigger than Mickey Mouse and Super Mario”. With relentless updates, new ports and spin-offs, Rovio wants to broaden its appeal, while remaining fresh and relevant to its existing fan base. Will its strategy work? Or will we see Angry Birds losing its steam in the near future? Let us know what you think.

Facebook Launches New Comments Platform

Facebook has just unveiled its completely revamped Comments platform for blogs and other websites, in a move that will put it in direct competition with the likes of Disqus and IntenseDebate. You can go ahead and grab the script from the Facebook dev section.

Although there are quite a few 3rd-party comment management systems, Facebook has a few significant advantages. As you might guess, Facebook’s biggest advantage is its massive existing user base. The Facebook plugin features a unique two-way integration, which will encourage more comments while reducing spam. All comments published through the Facebook Comments Box will display the real name of the commenter. Furthermore, the comment will also be posted on the commenter’s profile, unless he manually chooses not to share his comment. These two factors should help in reducing the quantity of trolls by removing the veil of anonymity. Additionally, if you post a comment and your friend responds to that comment on Facebook, your friend’s response will also be visible on the 3rd-party website. Once again, this should make the webmasters happy by increasing user participation.

Facebook-Comments-Box

Some of the other handy features include automatic sorting of comments based on the number of likes, and crowd sourced spam moderation. There is also the possibility of integrating 3rd-party login providers. Currently, the only big name that Facebook has managed to get onboard is Yahoo. TechCrunch believes that Facebook also wanted to tie-up with Google and Twitter, but the deal fell through due to existing animosity among the involved parties.

Facebook-Comments-Box-Moderation-Options

On the whole, Facebook Comments Box is a compelling offering. The lack of anonymity might put off some commenters and also make it unsuitable for certain websites. However, a lot of webmasters, and a lot of users are going to love the social features offered by Facebook Comments. Right now, if I were Disqus, I would be scared shitless.

Free CityVille Coins and Cash Facebook Scam

Here we go again. A new Facebook scam is currently underway where users are clicking on links which promises to give them 4000000 coins and 400 cash from a website. The scam is spread through a message posted on the wall saying "OMG !! I CANT BELIVED IT WORKED !! IVE JUST GOT 4000000 COINS AND 400 1CASH FROM THIS WEBSITE CHECK IT OUT NOW – DONT MISS OUT -[redacted link]"

CityVille Zynga

Clicking on the link redirects you to a website which asks you to share the page twice and link the page twice and then post a message 10 times on CityVille related pages or CityVille related websites.

CityVille Coins Scam Facebook

I used my test account to perform the things told by the website and don’t be surprised when I say that it didn’t work at all. This thing also has scam written all over it, so please avoid it. Also, this website is created using a free website creator.

CityVille is the most popular game on created by Zynga, and there are bound to be people who take advantage of users run out of coins to play the games. Most of the Zynga games (and other games on Facebook) allow you a certain amount of coins/credits each day. Once you run out of them you can either purchase more coins/credits using actual money or undertake a survey to earn them for free.

Since people are so eager to get coins/credits to start playing again without spending money, such scams are highly successful. They don’t give you anything but fool you nevertheless.

Facebook Breakup Notifier Tells You When People Breakup or Are Single Again

Technology is good, but there are certain things which go beyond a line. Take for example a new app which will notify you when someone breaks up.

Facebook Breakup Bug

Now the app does not follow the love of your life around, it relies on the Facebook relationship status of the person you want to track and notifies you when they change they status back to "Single".

You like someone. They’re in a relationship. Be the first to know when they’re out of it.

Once you sign up for the Facebook Breakup Notifier, you can choose the friends whose relationship status changes you want to track. Once you have chosen those friends, the breakup Notifier app will monitor their relationship and send you an email whenever it finds a change. Kind of stalking right?

The app was created by Dan Loewenherz, who is apparently engaged. Wondering how many people are using the Facebook Breakup Notifier to see when he changes his status to single?

Sounds interesting? You can visit http://www.breakupnotifier.com/ and login with your Facebook account to track people.

Zynga’s [Probable] Worth: $10 Billion?

Speculative reports put up social gaming giant Zynga’s worth in the $7-10 billion range. The makers of Farmville, Mafia Wars and other Facebook games are minting money for their games in the fundraiser market. For a company that makes all its money from social games on Facebook, it’s pretty incredible and makes us all wait for its next big hit. No… wait, we aren’t waiting for any game from Zynga.

zYga

Wall Street Journal reported that Zynga was close to raising $500 million in a fundraising round with investors:-

San Francisco-based Zynga is in talks with a group of new investors, including T. Rowe Price Group Inc., Fidelity Investments and Morgan Stanley for the fundraising round, these people said. An existing investor, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, is also likely to participate with a small investment, one of these people said.

Earlier, Zynga was in a position to get $250 million invested and have a valuation of $7-9 billion, according to the report. The social gaming giant is quite the pet of investors even though some of its profits are shared with Facebook. The explosive growth, per se, of Zynga contributed to much of the love given to it by the investors. However, though the company has tried to de-link itself from Facebook with some games, the success of Zynga is still largely due to Facebook.

Nevertheless, while this round of investments clearly helps the casual Facebook game lover, the core gaming value of the games are pretty much zero. These are not realvideo games, whatever they may claim.

Twitter Restores Banned Ubermedia Applications

Twitter has a lot of problems with third party apps using the name Twitterin their app name. That or UberMedia fought a long and hard battle over the weekend to resolve the banning issue with the micro blogging giant.

ubermedia

On the 18th of this month, Twitter announced that the then Ubertwitter and Twidroyd had been suspended for violatingTwitter’s policies. The announcement also had a plug for Twitter’s own applications on the Blackberry and Android systems. Their reasons for suspension were shortly made known to the public:-

“Today we suspended several applications, including UberTwitter, twidroyd and UberCurrent, which have violated Twitter policies and trademarks in a variety of ways. These violations include, but aren’t limited to, a privacy issue with private Direct Messages longer than 140 characters, trademark infringement, and changing the content of users’ Tweets in order to make money.”

Today, Twitter updated their original post. They lifted the ban on the two applications, stating that the applications had started taking steps to remedy the policy violations. A new update for both the applications is available on the respective markets and only a re-sign in is needed for the apps to start working as they used to.

However, amidst this chaotic weekend, the truereason as to why Twitter suspended the apps without any prior warning crept up to the surface. Bill Gross, CEO of UberMedia, the creator of UberTwitter UberSocial responded on Quora as to why the apps had been suspended. However, the best comment on the entire issue came from a user who asked the vital question without making it seem like a question:-

Yes, and it’s total coincidence that on the day they were suspended Twitter ran the promoted Tweet #TwitterMobile and that UberTwitter was never suspended before being bought by Bill Gross & raising $17.5m.

This sort of shoddy and offensive behavior on Twitter Inc.’s part is not going to win it any brownie points later. However, being confined to its bounds (being the largest microblogging platform) we see monopoly mechanics emerging from its depths, although the entire affair has dulled our opinion of Twitter as a whole.

Is UberSocial The New UberTwitter?

Update: Probably Yes. See updates below.

If you have been seeing tweets on saying that UberSocial is the new UberTwitter, you are probably falling into a pit. First off, UberTwitter was banned earlier today by Twitter and they would not risk coming out with a new name because of what they have at stake.

The owner of UberTwitter; UberMedia, own a large number of Twitter clients including the recently acquired . Performing such a circumnavigation on the ban Twitter put in place would ensure that the new client got blocked along with all other UberMedia properties.

Also the site UberSocial is hardly functional. The downloads don’t work and the website is just not owned by the owners of UberTwitter. I might be wrong but you can check the Who Is information and I doubt it is owned by UberMedia.

Rest aside, stay away from UberSocial and if you are in so much of a desperate need, check out the UberTwitter alternatives for Blackberry.

Updates Below

The UberSocial site is owned by UberMedia. I have been able to confirm it through Who IS information which match those from UberSocial and UberMedia. They are both hosted on the same name servers:

ns1.idealab.com
ns2.idealab.com

However, UberSocial has not yet been submitted to the World and neither is the site functional. Whether renaming a client to another name would give it another chance on Twitter is yet to be seen.

Nevertheless, this has been an endless fiasco of a client being banned and it coming into the system by changing it’s name to another brand altogether when it was already one of the most popular brands on a device.

Sorry for jumping the gun on this, but sometimes you miss out on researching things fully and then come across updates which require you to re-justify what you wrote. I will try and ensure that this does not happen in the future.

UberTwitter Alternatives for Blackberry and iPhone

Earlier today, Twitter blocked the popular Blackberry client for ; UberTwitter. This must have come as a huge blow for users who relied on the software for checking on their tweets, replies, messages and updating their status.

Twitter Bird

If you are a or users and can’t access Twitter because you used those clients, here are some alternatives for you which are pretty good.

users can try out Echofon for Twitter (free) or TweetDeck for iPhone (free too) or the Official Twitter client for iPhone (free). If you are a Blackberry user, you can use the official Twitter client (free) or   Seesmic for Twitter (free) or Tweet Genius (free).

Android users can search the market place for the official Twitter client or also use for Android which is available in the marketplace.

UberTwitter and twidroyd Not Working? Twitter Suspended Them

Update: Added comment from Twitter below.

If you are user of the popular clients for , or ; UberTwitter or twidroyd for Twitter, you might not be able to use those applications for some time now.

We have suspended UberTwitter and twidroyd for violating our policies.

Every day, we suspend hundreds of applications that are in violation of our policies. Generally, these apps are used by a small number of users. We are taking the unusual step of sharing this with you because today’s suspension may affect a larger number of users.

has officially suspended the two clients for violating of policies. So UberTwitter and twidroyd users will no longer be able to access their tweets, replies or messages and update their statuses.

We are committed to helping you continue to use Twitter during the disruption of these applications. You can download Twitter for Blackberry, Twitter for Android and other official Twitter apps here. You can also try our mobile web site or apps from other third-party developers.

The Next Web found the note which was posted on the Twitter support blog, where Twitter suggested that users of these clients use another app for their Twitter needs. Though the note mentioned that these clients were blocked for policy violations, there was no updates on what policies they had violated.

Nevertheless, lot of Blackberry users will be left out in the cold because UberTwitter is one of the most popular clients. You could switch to the official Twitter client for Blackberry for now till this issue is resolved.

We have emailed Twitter for more information and will update this post as soon as we get any updates from them.

Update: Twitter spokesperson Carolyn Penner responded back with a comment

We ask all developers in the Twitter ecosystem to abide by a simple set of rules that are in the interests of our users, as well as the health and vitality of the platform as a whole.

We often take actions to enforce these rules; in fact, on an average day we turn off more than one hundred services that violate our API rules of the road. This keeps the ecosystem fair for everyone.

Today we suspended several applications, including UberTwitter, twidroyd and UberCurrent, which have violated Twitter policies and trademarks in a variety of ways. These violations include, but aren’t limited to, a privacy issue with private Direct Messages longer than 140 characters, trademark infringement, and changing the content of users’ Tweets in order to make money.

We’ve had conversations with UberMedia, the developer of these applications, about policy violations since April 2010, when they first launched under the name TweetUp a term commonly used by Twitter users and a trademark violation. We continue to be in contact with UberMedia and hope that they will bring the suspended applications into compliance with our policies soon.

So it looks like UberTwitter violated several rules including trademark, character limits and making money by editing tweets.

Update 2: Left out in the cold, check out some UberTwitter alternatives for Blackberry and Android.