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The New Debunkonomy

@PicPedant (mefi's own) has attracted a loyal following in doing the Sisyphean work of calling out Twitter photo spammers and scraper accounts by tracking down, correcting and debunking images and giving attribution to the source. Twitter is awash in "interesting photo" accounts particularly since images started appearing in timelines -- some of the most successful of which may be the wildly popular @HistoryInPics and @EarthPix founded by 2 teenagers who allegedly earn $40,000+ a month. PicPedant's debunking can be vastly amusing. Here are a few greatest hits: no, not a baby panda but an Etsy doll; no, not Japanese cherry trees but an infrared scene from Stockholm; no, not a real moon, but a photo manipulation. He's even called out Madonna for lack of attribution on an image that went viral after her tweet. Keep on keepin' on, you crazy pedant.
posted by madamjujujive on Feb 14, 2014 - 30 comments

People held umbrellas over the people holding umbrellas over him

A man collapses on Oxford Street, London, England and convulses in a fit. Bystanders rush over and help. That evening, on Twitter, victim and helpers find each other again and tell their stories.
posted by MartinWisse on Feb 9, 2014 - 16 comments

@ Risk

"I had a rare Twitter username, @N. Yep, just one letter. I’ve been offered as much as $50,000 for it. People have tried to steal it. Password reset instructions are a regular sight in my email inbox. As of today, I no longer control @N. I was extorted into giving it up."
—Naoki Heroshima explains how his accounts were hacked in order to force him to give up his single-letter Twitter handle. [more inside]
posted by me3dia on Jan 30, 2014 - 86 comments

Qualities that might make a machine feel human

The Boston Globe profiles Darius Kazemi, author of Twitter bots such as Metaphor-a-Minute, Last Words and Two Headlines, as well as the creator of Random Shopper (Previously) [more inside]
posted by frimble on Jan 28, 2014 - 9 comments

"You can't bring food from home into Epcot Centre. Don't even try it."

"Q. What makes Epcot such a special place for young & old alike? - Rajeesh (Bethesda, MD) --- A. Rajeesh, I honestly have no idea."
"Q. Do you offer discounts to senior citizens? - Arnie (Gothenburg, NE) --- A. Not really. Thanks for writing, Arnie!"
"Q. Are the rumors about Epcot being haunted true? - Lou (Central Falls, RI) --- A. Don't even joke about stuff like that, Lou."
"Epcot is 100% wheelchair accessible, basically."
"Many visitors ask us about our Jumping Water Fountains. We don't know how they work, but the man who invented them was definitely foreign."

Fun Facts, Informative Q&As, and Friendly Advice courtesy of @EpcotCentre.
posted by Atom Eyes on Jan 28, 2014 - 112 comments

Oh something good tonight will make me forget about you for now.

Writer Teju Cole, perhaps inspired by Agha Shahid Ali, has continued his Twitter experimentation by using out of context retweets to create Ghazals. [more inside]
posted by ghharr on Jan 28, 2014 - 14 comments

They tried to silence me 34 years ago, but I'm louder than ever.

"My last meal was a half a bowl of ice cream. I put it in the freezer so I could go get my sis. That bowl stayed in our freezer three years." Sister of teen murdered in 1980 tweets at @billcomeans. Story here.
posted by dobbs on Jan 22, 2014 - 9 comments

Pond, et al.

Pond provides end-to-end encrypted forward-secure asynchronous messaging that uses Tor to resist traffic analysis, i.e. metadata collection (threat model, technical, github). [more inside]
posted by jeffburdges on Jan 21, 2014 - 24 comments

Follow the world.

@Sweden is run by a different Swede each week. But what are the other @countries and @territories up to? [more inside]
posted by me3dia on Jan 20, 2014 - 33 comments

But what about the dogs?!

NBC's critically lauded thriller Hannibal released a season two trailer today. Author and fandom superstar Cleolinda Jones livetweeted the entire TCA preview event. (Spoilers for Season One, general screaming and rending of garments)
posted by The Whelk on Jan 19, 2014 - 347 comments

The Selfie Olympics

The best athletes in the Selfie Olympics (origin) [more inside]
posted by nooneyouknow on Jan 4, 2014 - 74 comments

"I'd buy that for a dollar!" RIP

Requiem for a Twitter Bot - Bixby Snyder bot is no more.
posted by Artw on Jan 2, 2014 - 18 comments

HOT SINGLES IN YOUR AREA, GAZING AT YOU WITH THAT BUSTER KEATON LOOK

HOT SINGLES IN YOUR AREA, RISING FROM THEIR SLUMBER, CLAWING UP THROUGH THE COLD MOIST EARTH, LICKING THEIR FANGS, READY TO USE THAT GROUPON
posted by filthy light thief on Dec 29, 2013 - 40 comments

you can love me if you want it's not my problem

"Alt lit [previously] is accused of navel-gazing myopia, but technically any writing occurring outside of traditional institutions qualifies for the label. Everyone I know has written alt lit: every status update, every blog post, everything that has ever been said on Twitter. And Twitter, unbeknown to Jonathan Franzen, is especially literary...Which brings me to Heiko Julien," Author (and composer) of "I Am Ready To Die A Violent Death." [more inside]
posted by Potomac Avenue on Dec 6, 2013 - 21 comments

An army of hipster-friendly bacon ninjas

Why Did 9,000 Porny Spambots Descend on This San Diego High Schooler? A voyage into the strange underworld of spambots, shady marketing, and non-human intelligence.
posted by Horace Rumpole on Nov 25, 2013 - 26 comments

Scientists join #manicuremonday

Seventeen Magazine encourages its readers to post pictures of their nail polish on twitter every Monday, using the tag #manicuremonday. Starting last week, working scientists and engineers have been contributing their own fingers - often beautifully manicured - doing sciencey stuff. The movement was started by scientist Hope Jahren. [Slate, HuffPo] [more inside]
posted by moonmilk on Nov 25, 2013 - 34 comments

BOOKS ARE THE SWEETS OF THE MIND

The Twitter feed for bookstore Waterstones Oxford Street, long known to fans of surreal twitter lit, reaches new heights of Fame with a Buzzfeed compilation. Browse around its Storify for science fiction, thrilling action/adventure, and poignant short stories.
posted by Erasmouse on Nov 15, 2013 - 14 comments

oublio: most popular stuff on the internet

oublio: most popular stuff on the internet "I made a site and I thought MeFi might find it interesting: It shows the most popular image on Reddit, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr and Flickr in real time, as well as the most popular videos on YouTube each day: www.oublio.com. Now you can waste time on social media more efficiently!" [via mefi projects]
posted by xingcat on Nov 14, 2013 - 23 comments

JPMorgan Chase does not control Twitter

JPMorgan Is Taking Questions From Twitter And Getting Thoroughly Trolled [more inside]
posted by chavenet on Nov 13, 2013 - 27 comments

"Wenn sie Juden sind, können wir nichts machen"

Tonight marks the 75th anniversary of the November Pogroms throughout Germany, known as Kristallnacht. @9Nov38 is live-tweeting the events of the night (in German.)
posted by muckster on Nov 9, 2013 - 29 comments

The 25 Twitter people you’ll regret meeting at a tweet-up.

The 25 Twitter people you’ll regret meeting at a tweet-up. "Guy who shouts “GRUMPY CAT! HORSE eBOOKS!” at you, as though memes work as punctuation marks or greetings in real life"
posted by feelinglistless on Nov 1, 2013 - 55 comments

Never Listen to the Hat

Ben Edlund, creator of the Tick and writer for Angel, Firefly, Supernatural, and most recently Revolution, has joined twitter. So far, he has used it for posting random doodles, mentioning myths he long held to be true, and other assorted thoughts. [more inside]
posted by dinty_moore on Oct 13, 2013 - 45 comments

The tornado did nothing to the sharks, sorry.

Twitter: @HardSciFiMovies imagines the plots of SF/F movies moving more in line with reality.... [via mefi projects]
posted by The Whelk on Oct 13, 2013 - 201 comments

1. Somebody, somewhere does something bad

The 29 Stages of a Twitterstorm [more inside]
posted by Diablevert on Oct 11, 2013 - 47 comments

a giant machine designed to give people what they want

"Twenty years after people began using the web en masse, it’s time, Williams said, to accept that the internet isn’t a magical universe with boundless potential. It’s just another engine for improving quality of life." Twitter, Blogger and Medium founder Evan Williams on the triumphs and dangers of convenience.
posted by Potomac Avenue on Oct 1, 2013 - 29 comments

Hello yes this is a bird

I am a birdsrightsactivist and fight against antibird sentiment. tree
posted by Brandon Blatcher on Sep 26, 2013 - 62 comments

X is the Y of Z

metropho.rs (You can zoom in)
posted by gwint on Sep 24, 2013 - 20 comments

We have #coats

On June 6, 2013 @BurlCoatFactory started posting on Twitter, apparently on behalf of the Burlington Coat Factory retail chain. The tweets started out reasonably enough, if a bit whimsical. But after a month had gone by things started to get a bit zanier and eventually full on weird. New York Magazine reports that until a few days ago the Burlington Coat Factory website linked directly to the account, but the link has now been removed and the corporation has allegedly disavowed any connection to the account (though said disavowal has apparently also been removed). Jezebel, Mashable, and even Esquire cover the weirdness.
posted by Songdog on Sep 19, 2013 - 104 comments

Racism, Ridicule, Righteousness and Reactions

Why “Racists React To [thing]” posts are just passive white supremacy.
posted by Artw on Sep 18, 2013 - 130 comments

PPP vs 538

Internet darlings Nate Silver and Public Policy Polling are feuding publicly this week, over PPP's decision not to release a polling result that they felt was probably inaccurate. Nate Silver tweeted "VERY bad and unscientific practice for @ppppolls to suppress a polling result they didn't believe/didn't like." And then the Twitter-based snipefest began, with PPP calling Silver's allegations 'absurd' and accusing him of 'jealosy,' while Silver called PPP's actions 'totally indefensible' and accused them of having their 'finger on the scale.' [more inside]
posted by showbiz_liz on Sep 13, 2013 - 75 comments

Patton Oswalt hijacks a twitter hashtag with excellent results

So the Toronto International Film Festival is going on as I write this. Their twitter hashtag is #TIFF13. But if you'd rather, Patton Oswalt and his followers have been making a little mischief with it, firing off a string of hilarious and brilliant never-to-be-made movies.
posted by nevercalm on Sep 8, 2013 - 55 comments

Other lines just aren’t interested in it. But why is it so different?

You might think that Waterloo & City Line couldn’t even have a Myers-Briggs Type, being a tunnel in London with some trains in it, but you’d be wrong. Whilst the normal way to establish a Myers-Briggs Type is get someone to fill in a questionnaire, it’s apparently possible to use a sample of text to analyse the personality of the author. And while the Waterloo & City Line didn’t have much to say for most of its 115 year history, for the last couple of years, it, and all the other London Underground lines, have been tweeting. So I use samples of tweets to discover what kinds of personalities they have.
posted by v21 on Sep 5, 2013 - 7 comments

Go home, Duolingo, you are drunk.

Weird Duolingo Phrases (SLTumblr). [more inside]
posted by Elementary Penguin on Aug 29, 2013 - 34 comments

"to me a recycled tweet is like a rerun"

How one Twitter user got famous by allegedly stealing comedians’ tweets. Prominent Twitterer Sammy Rhodes has been caught plagiarizing so many tweets that a dedicated Tumblr exists to track them all. The wonderful Mr. Destructo chimes in with his own take.
posted by Rory Marinich on Aug 18, 2013 - 66 comments

One Direction fans bravely vanquish some old band called The Who

In the Twitter war between the fans of One Direction and The Who, who wins? Does it really matter that One Direction members weren't even born util 10 years after It's Hard?
posted by theichibun on Aug 15, 2013 - 100 comments

Trolls For FREEDOM

Early this morning (midday in the Middle East), al-Qaeda launched a hashtag on Twitter to solicit advice on "suggestions for the development of jihadi media". JM Berger, writer of the national security/terrorism blog IntelWire, noticed this, and decided that they could use some help. The good word was spread across the national security and terrorism Twitterspace, and they successfully hijacked the hashtag from al-Qaeda. [more inside]
posted by Punkey on Aug 13, 2013 - 32 comments

Not Verified

Some surprising subversives on Twitter: Babe Ruth, Michael Jackson, Mahatma Gandhi, Pope John Paul II, Francis of Assisi, Marlin Brando, Martin Luther, Mary Wolfstonecraft, Pablo Neruda, Ann Landers, Thomas Jefferson, Albert Camus, Voltaire, John F. Kennedy, Bill Wilson and Socrates.
posted by Apropos of Something on Aug 12, 2013 - 17 comments

“Distinctly younger, distinctly blacker, and distinctly, well, gayer”

Greatest Vines 2013 [more inside]
posted by Nelson on Aug 9, 2013 - 41 comments

By liking each other’s pictures we were liking ourselves.

15 Pop-Cultural Abysses From Which There Is No Escape. One in a series of fictional and memoiric explorations of celebrity culture known as "Exploring the Language of the Stars" by writer Kevin Fanning.
posted by Potomac Avenue on Aug 8, 2013 - 18 comments

15 ways to waste your day online with Tim Holman

tholman.com is the playground and folio of interactive developer Tim Holman, where he has posted 15 different projects, both interactive (fizzy cam [info/demo]; ZenPen; Texter; and Image Nodes) and passive (Meet the Ipsums, more than 30 text generators, from corporate to batman; the useless web; dripping paint). [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Aug 7, 2013 - 8 comments

Three years of Horse_ebooks

On three years of Twitter's spam phenomenon, Horse_ebooks.
posted by Chrysostom on Aug 6, 2013 - 22 comments

Business clients can be poor with the simple task of sending email

Sometimes, it is hard to resist sending to a customer a link to last year's article What’s so good about email? from Rory Sutherland who, in his day job, is Vice-Chairman, Ogilvy & Mather UK. Elsewhere, Sutherland does not say too much at Twitter, but some links and remarks make him worth a follow. Some Sutherland thinking at TED is fun and provoking.
posted by Schroder on Aug 4, 2013 - 27 comments

Emoji Tracker.

Real-time tracking of emoji use across twitter. Click on each emoji to see who is using it.
posted by Rumple on Aug 2, 2013 - 25 comments

Sketch comedy made by men. Or whatever.

"Don't forget the cream" a video by the LA comedy troupe (and twitter masterclass) Women. Warning: many Women sketches are NSFW and almost none include actual women, or anyone else.
posted by Potomac Avenue on Jul 30, 2013 - 13 comments

Manchester man arrested after tweeting rape threats

A 21 year old man was arrested for tweeting rape threats. The target of the tweets, Caroline Criado-Perez, had successfully campaigned to have a woman (Jane Austen) shown on the UK's new 10 pound note, and has been subsequently receiving incessant rape and death threats via twitter, a violation of UK law. Twitter's Terms of Service are being repeatedly and flagrantly violated in this episode, and the company appears to be having issues responding to a backlog of reports; it responded to Criado-Perez only that she take the matter to the police. This resulted in shadow home secretary Yvette Cooper asking Twitter to review its policies for handling abuse complaints. [more inside]
posted by vira on Jul 28, 2013 - 128 comments

Letting go

For a few days now, Scott Simon, host of NPR's Weekend Edition Saturday, has been present at his mother's bedside in the intensive care unit of a Chicago hospital. He is documenting this time, what will apparently be his last days with her, in a series of heartwrenching messages on his Twitter stream.
posted by deliciae on Jul 28, 2013 - 60 comments

All My Exes Live in Texts

Why the Social Media Generation Never Really Breaks Up. [NSFW]
posted by josher71 on Jul 22, 2013 - 99 comments

The Injured Coast

Teju Cole (previously) live-tweeted on Friday his trip across the Slave Coast from Lagos, Nigeria to Ouidah, Benin.
posted by Cash4Lead on Jul 20, 2013 - 3 comments

Pope to offer Indulgences to his Twitter followers

What the Pope Really Meant in His Twitter-Indulgences Announcement [more inside]
posted by Shouraku on Jul 19, 2013 - 68 comments

#toomucheffortfortoolittlereward

I came to Twitter because I had a book to sell, and my misgivings about the whole enterprise meant that I would never be any good at it. A phrase comes to mind: I was “pissing into the void.” For 1 year, 4 months and 22 days—or 508 days total—Twitter became part of my daily thinking ritual. Writer Benjamin Anastas says Goodbye to Twitter Village. VQR editor Jane Friedman comments.
posted by shivohum on Jul 10, 2013 - 35 comments

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