More Twitter Facts for Those Who Crave These Things

twitter-birdIf nothing else, Twitter sure generates a lot of user data. As to the accuracy of the data there is no way to tell what’s what. When the data comes from Twitter directly, however, do you trust it more or less?

As reported in the Guardian, Evan Weaver, the lead engineer on the Twitter services team gave a little insight into the inner workings of the service but also told the audience at the QCon 2009 some tidbits like

  • The average Twitter user has 126 followers (no mention as to how many are spam)
  • Only 20% of the Twitter traffic comes through the website. Third party software on smart phones and computers contribute the rest.

Google: Pay No Attention to the Behemoth behind the Curtain

google angel halo“Competition is just a click away,” Google Senior Competition Counsel Dana Wagner reminds us. “We are in an industry that is subject to disruption and we can’t take anything for granted.”

I hear him loud and clear. I spend hours a day fretting about the future of Google. (Um, NOT.) But Wagner is doing something few companies have to worry about these days: campaigning to remind us how vulnerable they are.

Then again, as the New York Times points out, convincing people (or the government) you’re no big deal is kind of a big deal when you’re one deal away from anti-trust proceedings, and


[handle] roughly two-thirds of all Internet searches, . . . [own] the largest online video site, YouTube, which is more than 10 times more popular than its nearest competitor, [a]nd last year . . . sold nearly $22 billion in advertising, more than any media company in the world.

Stronger than Twitter, Faster than Facebook: Product Reviews as a Marketing Tool

As a marketer, which of these would you find more useful?

Tweet: @sumbuddy dont buy the BrandCo table it sux–hasnt stood up at all

or

On site review: (2 stars) For what we paid for this table, my husband and I expected something more durable. The wood dents way too easily for a kids’ table. We expected a lot more from BrandCo.

RejectedWhile both product reviews are negative, the on-site review giving a client’s product two stars might make us cringe a bit more than a single Tweet (even if the Tweet was as specific as the other review). But the on-site review might also be the better marketing tool, at least according to Ad Age today.

Is Microsoft Ready to Shave Off Razorfish’s Conflict of Interest?

When Microsoft acquired aQuantive in 2007, it wanted to bolster its ad network. Unfortunately, it also ended-up with a conflict of interest, as aQuantive came with Avenue A | Razorfish–an ad agency.

Since then, you could argue that about the only good thing to come out of that particular acquisition was the re-branding from the awkward "Avenue A | Razorfish" to the more practical Razorfish. Really, what did Microsoft want with an ad agency anyway?

Well, the FT has yet another rumor–in a long line of rumors–that Microsoft plans to sell off Razorfish.

Microsoft has appointed Morgan Stanley to find a potential buyer for Razorfish, its digital agency…In August, two years after the aQuantive deal, more favourable tax implications will provide an opportunity for Microsoft to sell an asset some view as a conflict of interest with Microsoft Advertising, which sells technology to rival agencies.

Microsoft Loses Key Bing Developer to eBay

It seems that Microsoft’s taking three steps forward and one step back, with its hiring of other companies’ employees. It just lost Hugh Williams to eBay.

He left Microsoft to become vice president of development for search for the auction site and, judging by Williams’ LinkedIn profile, eBay gains the guy that helped created Bing:

I was a Partner at Microsoft, and a development manager in the Bing team. I’m proud to say that many of the features of the first Bing release were created by my team.

I managed the development of all user-facing web search relevance features, including the left-rail explore pane (with its "table of contents"), navigational query treatments, query-biased summaries, "deeplinks", related searches, and whole page results relevance. Additionally, I managed the Powerset team in San Francisco.

EU Demands Tighter Privacy Policies for Social Networks

facebook2Man, hardly a week goes by without the European Union getting after some Internet behemoth for bad business practices or invading individuals’ privacy, or both. Usually it’s Google on the receiving end, but this time it’s social networks that are getting scrutiny from the supranational regulator.

As Facebook begins testing greater and greater publicity, with user controls, the EU begins demanding more and more of social networks’ privacy policies—or, that’s what we think their vague regulations are trying to do, anyway.

facebook-density

There are several specific policies that social networks such as MySpace and Facebook, which both have large European audiences, will have to comply with: automatically setting users’ privacy to the highest level (giving users the option to opt out of that extreme level of privacy), allow users to limit the data shared with third-parties (including advertisers and applications), and limit the use of “sensitive information,” including race, religion and political views, in behavioral targeting.

Facebook Taking Status Updates Public (A La Twitter)

This week, Facebook announced some coming changes to your status updates. Soon, just like with Twitter, you’ll have the option to make them public—but not just to everyone on the world’s most popular social network, but everyone around the world. (You know, with Internet access.)

facebook status updates everyone

Because this feature is being implemented on the Facebook Publisher, you can add more to your newsstream than just text updates and links. The buttons below the text area allow you to add photos, videos and announcements or other integrations from your apps that have integrated with the publisher.

Facebook also gave an in-depth explanation of each level of access:

  • Everyone: Anyone, on or off, of Facebook can see it.