"Planning to make a joke on Twitter about bombing something? You might want to reconsider: According to a report from Britain, two tourists were detained and denied entry into the U.S. recently after they joked about destroying America and digging up Marilyn Monroe. That the Homeland Security Dept. and other authorities—including the FBI—are monitoring such social media as Twitter and Facebook isn’t surprising. That these authorities are willing to detain people based on what is clearly a harmless joke, however, raises questions about what the impact of all that monitoring will be."* [more inside]
"You know how annoying it is when you're sitting on the train with a magazine and the person sitting beside you starts reading over your shoulder? Welcome to every single moment of your future. Might as well get used to it. It's an experience we'll all be sharing." --Charlie Brooker on sharing, and why the world is doomed
Focus on the User, Google! says a coalition of engineers from Facebook, Twitter and Myspace. They have created their own 'Don't be Evil' bookmarklet to rearrange Google's social search results to remove G+ bias, using Google's own APIs. Caution: Bookmarklet does not work with IE or in areas without Google's new social search features. May choke smaller ferrets.
Néo Fénéon: "Three thousand seven hundred dollars richer after stealing from the job, Marvin Williams, 25, of Brooklyn, went to urinate in a playground." - Items from the NYPD blotter remixed daily in the style of Félix Fénéon. (previously)
Overheard on the Goldman Sachs elevator Single Link Twitter Feed
Canada declares its "canadacy" in the race for US President (The Canada Party on Twitter; also spotted on HuffPo)
Self-Organized, Hyper-Networked Revolts—Coming to a City Near You: Wired looks at how messaging and social media have influenced the dynamics of riots, protests, other large crowd gatherings.
Didn't get that Apple product you wanted for Christmas? Jonathan Mann, with the help of Twitter, composed a song for you: WTF?! I wanted an iPhone! If that doesn't quite rock your world, Mann composes and performs a song a day, so there ought to be something you like.
The EFF's Year End Review The ACLU's This Year in Civil Liberties Amnesty International's Anual Report (video) [more inside]
Arduino + servos + laser + phosphorescent surface + Twitter = Fade Away 1. A thoughtful art project about the "permanence" of the Internet.
Shit Girls Say, a humorous twitter account created by Graydon Sheppard and his partner Kyle Humphrey, now has two videos based on the joke [1,2]. Some women say "um, no thanks.".
Swedish Citizens Now Control @sweden Twitter Account. Curators of Sweden is based around the idea that no single voice can represent the country, so a slew of guest Swedish curators will do the best job to portray the national character. One Swedish citizen will have control of the @sweden handle each week.
Did you know that Al-Shabaab, the Islamic militant group currently fighting for control of southern Somalia, has a Twitter account? [more inside]
AN ANACONDA UNHINGES ITS MAGNIFICENT JAW. INSIDE, THE BRIGHT SCREEN OF A FREE IPAD RESTS JUST WITHIN ARM'S REACH
Daniel Manitou is ActualPerson084 on Twitter. He writes slices of life about marketing and unspeakable horror. He is a real person and not a metal ghost in a rainbow box.
I live online as much as I live offline. Often, I move around in the world staring into a device as I walk, sharing bits of one realm with the other. The morning I went in for my first mammogram, I felt nervous. I would tweet this new thing, like I do with lots of new things, and make the unknown and new feel less so. Maybe by doing so, I thought while I was driving, other women like me who'd never done this would also feel like it was less weird, less scary, more normal and worth doing without hesitation. I'd crack some 140-character jokes. I'd make fun of myself and others. I would Instagram my mammogram.
There were thousands of Russians protesting the widespread ballot stuffing discovered during the elections last sunday. Russian police arrested hundreds of protesters who had gathered in Moscow’s Triumfalnaya Square, including Alexei Navalny. Protestors raised awareness using Twitter hashtags like #триумфальная (Triumfalnaya), but pro-Kremlin spammers were prepared to drown them out using 2000 automated twitterbots they'd created earlier this year. (related, recently)
Twitter has launched an entirely overhauled version of Twitter, today, including a new version of its website, its apps, and TweetDeck (now native on Mac, rather than using Adobe AIR!). You currently need to download the latest version of the Android or iPhone app to see the new version of the website. Dan Frommer offers some good first impressions.
High school student Emma Sullivan posted a tweet disparaging Kansas Governor Sam Brownback while on a field trip to the State Capitol. Brownback's staff called Sullivan's principal and complained. This has not resulted in postive PR for Brownback.
As we wind down 2011, we think of the most exciting moments from the last year. We measure these moments by "Tweets per minute". The 10 Most Tweeted Moments Of All Time all happened during the last year. Remember when Osama bin Laden died? (Number 10: 5,106 tweets per second.) There was an earthquake in Japan (Number 7: 5,530 tweets per second.) There were sporting events. But the Number 1 most tweeted event of 2011 was... [more inside]
Australia's Qantas Airlines has been left red-faced after an ill-timed public relations campaign and Twitter competition backfired, drawing thousands of angry responses. The contest ran a day after talks with unions broke down, and after Qantas grounded its entire fleet in October. Thousands of passengers were stranded worldwide after the firm halted flights in an attempt to end months of strike action by workers angered by the firm's restructuring plans. The "Qantas Luxury" promotion, launched on 22 November, quickly tapped into customers' ire. ~ BBC
"London Bridge is currently closed to the public and a section 60 in place due to the presence of a depressed swan." - The Metropolitan Police Twitter Feed: Giving you the lowdown on all the criminal shit that's going down in London town. [more inside]
Women journalists confront harassment, sexism when using social media You come to expect it, as a woman writer, particularly if you’re political. You come to expect the vitriol, the insults, the death threats. After a while, the emails and tweets and comments containing graphic fantasies of how and where and with what kitchen implements certain pseudonymous people would like to rape you cease to be shocking, and become merely a daily or weekly annoyance, something to phone your girlfriends about, seeking safety in hollow laughter.
Maria Popova may be the best curator of Awesome on the Internet after the blue's own hivemind. Her site, Brain Pickings, has been mentioned a few times, but no-one appears to have pointed out her Twitter feed or her contributions to TBWA's tumblr, Curiosity Counts. Some recent posts of note: a piece on digital parasitism and the business of culture, Terry Prachett's self-documentary Choosing To Die, her selection of the best children's and picture books of 2011. Also, the best of Brain Pickings from last week and 2010. When not doing all that, she's writing for several magazines, organising the effort to restock the Brookyn OWS library after its destruction by police, and curating physical objects, sent as gifts every quarter.
"On Friday, a group of comedians took to Twitter, creating a faux-official account for Jack and Jill under the name @JackNJillMovie, firing off a series of digs at the film disguised as a misguided and desperate promotional campaign."The Twitter account is suspended, but you can't take pee out of a swimming pool.
Stories made from: microspores, fog maps, infected bass samples, mathematics, patterns of decay, broken machines, blood, code bugs…
The Awl takes a look at how Twitter has allowed local slang to go global, and the unhappiness this causes for some.
Google and Facebook would have you believe that you're a mirror, that there is one reflection that you have, this one idea of self. [They believe] that what you see in that mirror is what everybody else sees. But in fact we're more like diamonds, you can look at people from any angle and see something totally different. - Chris Poole, AKA Moot, founder of 4Chan and Canvas, from his speech at the Web 2.0 Summit on self-expression through social networking. [more inside]
Occupy Wall Street started informally through social media. But who and how? Gilad Lotan has reconstructed the origin of #OccupyWallStreet for Reuters.
The google and sonic.net emails of Tor developer Jacob Appelbaum (ioerror) have been obtained by the DoJ using a secret court order, which both companies sought to unseal and sonic actually fought in court. Sonic's CEO Dane Jasper said that challenging the order was "rather expensive, but we felt it was the right thing to do." Appelbaum has repeatedly been harassed by boarder agents when entering the U.S. and his twitter account was subpoenaed [more inside]
The Best of #OccupySesameStreet. Since its launched two weeks ago, the #OccupyWallStreet movement has gone national, spawning copy-cat demonstrations in far-flung locales like Tulsa and Boise. Its members have serious concerns--about income inequality, the influence of large corporations in our political system, and their own financial futures. The #OccupySesameStreet movement? Not so much.
Mr. Destructo (previously) discusses the inscrutable twitter bot named horse_ebooks, a Russian spam account that communicates entirely through snippets of ebooks and is more hilarious (1, 2, 3, 4), confusing (1, 2, 3, 4) and philosophically poetic (1, 2, 3, 4) than any non-spambot on the internet.
Architectural theorist David Gissen has recently been travelling through France to learn about wine. His dedicated Twitter account @100aocs has attracted the attention of sommeliers, importers, and winemakers. Edible Geography caught up with Gissen to discuss wine, wine culture, geography, and Gissen's re-thought wine map of France based on Metro maps such as London's Tube map. How Wine Became Metropolitan: An Interview with David Gissen.
When @Irene Met Hurricane Irene A mild mannered 28 year old social media strategist in New York has a Twitter handle that's being mistaken for Hurricane Irene's.
Skincare company Nivea withdraws a controversial magazine ad after accusations of racism. The ad shows a black man in the act of throwing out a full-face mask which has a beard and an afro. The image is juxtaposed with the slogan "Re-Civilize Yourself." [more inside]
Meet Karl Welzien. He lives in Grand Blanc, Michigan. He is recently divorced from Ann, and lives with his buddy Dave. He loves drinking cold ones, driving his Sebring, maxing out some karaoke, and knocking back some Chili's hot wings because they have big bold flavor. He's a big fan of Guy Fieri, and loves the occasional "toilet nap" during his workday. Karl is a fictional character that exists only on Twitter, @DadBoner. [more inside]
The Elusive Big Idea "It is no secret, especially here in America, that we live in a post-Enlightenment age in which rationality, science, evidence, logical argument and debate have lost the battle in many sectors, and perhaps even in society generally, to superstition, faith, opinion and orthodoxy. While we continue to make giant technological advances, we may be the first generation to have turned back the epochal clock — to have gone backward intellectually from advanced modes of thinking into old modes of belief."
Fifty years after British colonialism, ten years after military rule, Nigerians are free. Not economically free, not yet, and we see the effect of that lack of economic freedom in the kinds of crimes that are committed. But they are free in important ways. You can live where you want, associate with whom you want. You can sue people in court, gather to practice your religion, under the leadership of whichever holy man or charlatan you prefer, and you can marry and divorce as you please. This is a major thing. This is modernity, and to tell these stories, to give the protagonists of these losses even that little bit of attention, is to honor the fact that they are there, that their life goes on.On his twitter feed, novelist Teju Cole has been taking the French literary tradition of faits divers and adapting it to "bring news of a Nigerian modernity."
Airline pilots used to communicate with passengers by passing notes. No non-stop flights meant plenty of time for reading books, eating dinner and passing notes from the pilot around. These personal records of one man's mom who was a stewardess on the Chicago to NY route (which meant stops in Fort Wayne, Ohio and Pennsylvania), are particularly chilling.
Heello is a social media site that seems to be have been launched in revenge against Twitter by the founders of Twitpic, but it has become a window into a bizarre alternate social media universe. One in which CNN screams headlines in all-caps, fake Mark Zuckerberg insults people while counting his money, a generic social media expert tweets like a generic social media "expert," and companies ranging from Twitter to MySpace insult each other. Indications are that Heello is not amused by all of this, and has deleted a few particularly good fake accounts.
You know that one Friend From High School? She just found you on twitter.
Newt Gingrich's presidential campaign is floundering despite his brag that "I have six times as many Twitter followers as all the other candidates combined." Maybe because 80% of them are fake. Or maybe they're not. [more inside]
William Lawrence Cassidy has been indicted for a series of threatening tweets directed towards Alyce Zeoli, aka Jetsunma Ahkon Lhamo, the leader of a Buddhist organization known as Kunzang Palyul Choling (KPC) to which Cassidy had belonged. There is however a small problem that federal prosecutors are employing a vague anti-stalking law that makes 'intentional infliction of emotional distress' through the use of 'any interactive computer service' a felony, rather than focussing more narrowly upon the outright threats. [more inside]
I do not enjoy Facebook - I find it cloying and impossible - but I am there every day. Paul Ford writes about social media, the ceaseless flow of time, and narratives - or, "Facebook and the Epiphanator".