Cite That Tweet Properly

Writing an academic paper? Need to cite your sources? Especially that oh-so-relevant tweet from “x”? Now you can. The Modern Language Association suggests this formula:

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Citing multiple tweets? There’s a site for that. Web developer, Ben Hedlund has built Tweet2Cite.com, a free resource that can take the URL of any tweet, extract the requisite information, and, with one click, generate citations in the MLA & APA format.

Article from Mashable

Why I’m Curious: 

It’s fascinating to me that we have now come to a time when tweets not only have a proper way to referenced, but are an actual viable source to educators. Will this lead the way to other social content citation guidelines? To me, this just goes to show how social content (branded or personal) has become such an integral part of live and culture.

Verified Twitter Accounts Get New Feed

Twitter has rolled out a special feature to only verified accounts – two additional filters on the “Connect” tab. Now users (with that little blue check) can view mentions from All, Filtered, or Verified. The ultimate goal? To make conversations between celebrities easier while eliminating spam. On the “Verified” tab, users will only see other verified accounts they follow (aka other “celeb status” individuals). Fancy, right?

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Why I’m Curious: 

I get it, Twitter prides itself on being a place where celebrities, athletes, musicians, etc. can share their daily happenings, but did we need to create new functionality for them? I find it interesting that Twitter has taken an extra step to create a better user experience for their “top” users. I’m curious to see if this will decrease engagement with fans/common folk in the space or help it – fans are still housed in that “Filtered” tab with less spam!

I did some exploring on our own @RealLunchables brand page and the functionality (rolled out yesterday) appears to be a little glitchy. The “Verified” tab didn’t filter as expected… we will see!

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Custom Phone Color Based on Facebook Photos

A new Facebook application allows users to create a custom Moto X phone based on the colors in photos from their Facebook page. Once users find the ultimate personalized color, they can finish the process using Motorola’s Moto Maker and have their custom creation sent right to their doorstep.

Below are some sample “creations” from the app:

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Source: Mashable

Why I’m Curious: 

Personalization isn’t new, especially when it comes to our phones. I was curious about this app because you are essentially picking a phone color – that’s it. Yes, your photos dicate the direction of the color chosen by the app, but do your photos shared on your Facebook page really highlight your favorite color? No. I don’t really understand the relevance of the color selected being guided by your Facebook photos. Maybe I’m being too critical, but I think some brands are stretching it too far when it comes to social integration. Can you think of any other examples of this off the top of your head?

Digital Camera Uploads Photos Directly to Social Networks

According to this PSFK article, “Swedish company theQ has launched a 5-megapixel digital camera that enables users to take and upload photos directly to social networks.”

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Unlimited photos can be stored online in theQ LAB, which requires you to setup your camera once and then you never have to plug it in again. You can select social networks, apply filters and save your photos online, with everything hidden from public access if you prefer.

Features? A vintage viewfinder, manual focus ring, shock-proof, water-proof and an LED-powered ring flash that delivers perfectly even light. Encircling the optical axis of the lens, the ring flash also functions as a battery indicator and a timer, with eight segments that count down the seconds.

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Why I’m Curious:

At $199 would you purchase and carry around this camera? Can’t we essentially do the same thing on our phones? But if you’re going to have a “camera” is this the way to go? These are all questions I asked myself. For those addicted to photo sharing this is the ultimate device. To me, it seems like more of a burden to carry the camera around and use another platform to manage your photos when our phones can suffice.

Porsche Fans Rally Brand Support Among Network to Win Grand Prize

To celebrate Porsche’s 5 million Facebook likes, they made it possible for each and every fan to contribute to the design of a fan version of the 911 Carrera 4S model. The initiative began Feb. 4 with Porsche asking “the best expert panel in the world: our fans” to choose an exterior color. In the following weeks, fans voted on additional features from the specific wheel to the car’s interior color. Porsche revealed the final product in on Facebook on Aug. 2.

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With the car designed, the brand is now offering one fan and a friend the chance to get behind the wheel at the Porsche Experience Center in Silverstone Circuit in the UK. According to the Mashable article, “In order to participate, fans need to show Porsche how many public Porsche fans they have in their friend lists. The user with the highest number of Porsche Facebook fans will win the trip.”

Source: Mashable

Why I’m Curious:

It’s not new for brands to elicit fan input for their products. Whether the brand ultimately releases the “fan designed” offering can vary, but social is the perfect place to ask for this type of consumer input. It makes your community feel like you value what they have to say. However, what I find interesting is how fans enter to win the grand prize trip/test drive. Not only must you like Porsche, but your friend network must like Porsche as well. Your ranking ultimately relies on your Facebook friends. You must rallying your network to support the car maker. Would you rally your friends to “Like” Porsche so you could win?

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Ad-worthy Instagram Photos = Brand Rewards & Prizes

Your Instagram photos can now win you prizes, courtesy of SnapMyAd. This new free app, synched with Instagram, offers gifts in exchange for using people’s images in companies’ ad campaigns. Users simply sign in with their Instagram accounts and apply existing images to the app. Brands can push specific product sales, promotions and events for consumers to take photos of, and decide which pictures they want. Once both parties agree on a perk, brands can use those photos in campaigns. Prizes can range from Amazon gift cards to magazine subscriptions.

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Why I’m Curious: 

Talk about leveraging UGC. Will this change how users grant permissions for brands to leverage their photos/comments? Will fans now expect reimbursement in return always? I’m curious to see how this application evolves and if larger brands will begin to take part.

Sources: Mashable Article + PSFK Article

Chipotle Stages Fake-hacking on Twitter

Chipotle has admitted to a fake-hacking this past Sunday, July 21st. According to Fast Company’s article, “The idea was to generate some column inches and maybe increase Twitter followers.”

Why I’m Curious: 

We all know hackings of any kind with any brand can generate buzz (think back to Burger King earlier this year). Most hackings leave a mess for brands to clean up with controversial tweets/posts being shared unapproved by the brand. The controversial and unexpected content is part of the draw… so why stage your own hacking with nothing but boring, meaningless tweets? According to Chris Arnold, a Chipotle representative, “It was definitely thought out: We didn’t want it to be harmful or hateful or controversial.”

I think we can all agree, the content below is bland and meaningless.

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Isn’t it more worthwhile to create a unique campaign or killer content to generate buzz about your brand/company? I would think so. Chipotle has done nothing but embarrass themselves and demean their social credibility.

Facebook Facelifts

How important is your Facebook profile photo to you? In India it’s critical to your identity. India is reportedly experiencing a growing trend in which social media users in their 20s and 30s are have surgical procedures to enhance their appearance… for Facebook. Facebook users are getting laser skin treatment, chin augmentation and rhinoplasty, just to name a few.

For a country that invented the rhinoplasty and pioneered body and face piercing, they are no stranger to enhancing their appearance through “artificial means.”

Why Am I Curious?

Of course we all want to look our best whenever we can, especially via our social networks. Our profiles define our personality and being within the social realm, but isn’t a flattering photo enough? In India… no. You not only need to look good, but look good in person (or like your profile photo). Many are using the social network to find a mate, but I can’t help but wonder is going under the knife so your chin looks good during a skype session worth it? How much do you care about your social identity when it comes to photos?

Article from Mashable

New York Times + Zombies

Last week some visitors to nytimes.com were greeted by a disturbing headline stating, “Population Loss Projected at 4.7 Billion.” An array of unsettling articles about power outages, survivor searches and cities going dark were included in the ad that resembled the NYT front page almost exactly. The ad was only served up to viewers for a few seconds, before defaulting to the daily headlines, giving viewers barely enough time to process that what they just saw was an ad to promote the new zombie flick, World War Z.

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Why Am I Curious?

We’re now living in a world where outrageous headlines are our reality. I’m sure this ad made many people’s heart flutter for a second. I’m curious, does this add take it too far or is it just a great piece of advertising that in the end got us good?