Five things on Friday #82

Things of note for the week ending July 25th, 2014.

WEEEEEEEEEEEE

– Above image via this AMAZING photo set 

1. Shatner on Facebook Mentions
If you’re a celebrity (hi!) then you’re probably interested in this new app from Facebook, ‘Facebook Mentions‘. If you’re not a celebrity, don’t worry because William Shatner (yes, that one) has written a handy guide.

Facebook Mentions - shatner

You can read said guide over on the former Captain Kirk’s super awesome Tumblr page.

2. Destiny
If you’ve been paying attention recently, you might’ve spotted that there’s a beta of a new game out at the moment and its name is Destiny.

DESTINY

Seriously, download it now.

To celebrate this game being amazing, here are some key facts about Destiny:

  • Activision, the game’s publisher, is apparently investing around $500 million on the development and marketing of this game (that’s an insane amount of money ).
  • Bungie, the game’s creator, is the team that developed the multi-award-winning Halo series for Microsoft’s Xbox.
  • The game itself doesn’t actually hit the shelves until September 9th. All of the press so far has been about the limited time Alpha (one weekend!) and the Beta (two weeks!). See the official timeline for details.
  • Oh, and it is awesome. SO AWESOME. Order it now.

3. A guy walks into a bar
This is wonderful.

4. Moto X Tattoos
This is now a joke: Motorola have launched a new range of temporary DIGITAL TATTOOS that you can stick to your skin and then use to UNLOCK YOUR PHONE.

Wooo fancy

There’s a fancy video too (it’s only 90 seconds long – give it a watch).

Personally, I think this is awesome. Like, really really awesome. Admittedly the ‘tattoos’ themselves only last for a week (and I think about ten dollars for a pack of ten) BUT it’s a yet another item to add into the wearable tech of the future category that hopefully we might see more of over the coming years.

Hurrah for innovative thinking.

5. The best Philippines fact you’ll read today

Vulcan Point

Did you know that Vulcan Point (the small island pictured above) is the world’s largest island within a lake on an island within a lake on an island? Well, you do now.

Nature is awesome.

— — —
I’m off Twitter for a little while (long story, check my feed for clues as to why) so if you’re reading this, please share it as far and wide as you can.

Cheers,

Whatley out.

rain

 

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Five things on Friday #78

Things of note for the week ending June 27th, 2014.
(sorry it’s late)

LOOK AT THE THINGS

1. Paper Later
Discovered via my friend Robbie last night (who had just taken delivery of his own copy). PaperLater is a super neat and super retro way of enjoying the articles that you save to your ‘read it later’ app of choice, e.g.: Pocket or Instapaper).

Paper Later

What it does is, for £4.99, pull all your saved-for-later articles, lays them out in a decent format, print them up on sustainable / recycled newspaper, and then delivers the whole thing to your door.

Lovely stuff.

The beta is UK only for now and you can sign up right here.

2. Petit Tube
Like Forgotify before it, Petit Tube is a website that celebrates the esoteric content of the internet. In this case, bringing out the very best (or worst) of YouTube by digging up those videos that have zero [or close to zero] views against them. This is deep exploration of the the long tail; here be dragons.

Seriously super random.

3. Phases in Mobile
A characteristically great post from Ben Evans. This week, using the TV ads of the past ten years to analyse how much the face of the mobile consumer space has changed since 1994.

Zero to 2bn customers in ten years. What will the next ten bring?

Read: Phases in Mobile.

4. Facebook’s ‘Experiment’
This story landed two days ago and it is spiralling like crazy. If you’ve not read about it yet, start with Marginal Revolution and click, click, click from there. This will not go away quickly.

5. Superman: DOOMED.
This isn’t an item about Superman. Well, it is. But that’s not what I mean. Guillem March is an artist working in comic books today. He uses his blog to demonstrate the process of creating, amongst other things, covers for different books.

This week he showed the process from this –

Screen Shot 2014-06-29 at 17.55.10

To this –

Superman Doomed cover color

I love this stuff.

That is all.

_____________________________________

Bonus items are all videos this week, enjoy –

 

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How to opt-out of auto-play videos in Facebook

If you hadn’t heard, Auto-play ads videos in the Facebook mobile app (and desktop) are on their way.

Facebook Videos - DEATH

Good? Bad? Annoying? All three? Yeah, maybe. But look, here’s the bad news: on mobile, you can’t actually switch them off. What you can do however is prevent them from playing over your mobile network. In other words, make the videos only download over Wi-Fi only, and ostensibly opt-out of letting them auto-play on your handset.

Here’s how that works.

  • On iOS
    Go to Settings -> Facebook -> Facebook Settings -> ‘Auto-Play videos on WiFi only’
  • On Android
    Go to Facebook -> swipe right to the options pane -> App Settings -> ‘Auto-play videos on WiFi only’

Switch off auto-play videos in Facebook mobile

The benefits of this are two fold:

  1. If you’re hardly ever connected to wi-fi, you can pretty much ‘opt out’ of this auto-play media completely.
  2. If you’re not on any kind of unlimited data plan with your network provider, this will prevent Facebook eating into that precious data.

 

Hat tip to he who spotted this, Charles Arthur.
Go give him a follow.

 

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83% of Facebook’s UK Daily Users are on Mobile

How many?

Facebook MAU DAU

Source: TechCrunch

According to the above chart, posted yesterday on TechCrunch, Facebook’s Daily Active Users (DAU) for mobile make up a staggering 83% of all active users.

First off, that’s a MASSIVE NUMBER.

Second, we need to dig a little deeper. As Josh Constine states ‘To be clear, total stats count each individual user as 1 regardless of whether they accessed from desktop, mobile, or both. Mobile stats count each user who accessed via mobile, whether or not they also accessed via desktop.’

What this means is that while they’re not exclusively accessing Facebook via mobile*, 83% of overall DAU do at some point access via mobile. That is still a huge number.

What does this mean?

  1. Surprise surprise, UK users access Facebook from their mobile phones
  2. If you’re a brand using Facebook to speak to your users (y’know, through building apps and stuff) you better be thinking MOBILE FIRST – but again, this is not news
  3. A genuinely surprising amount of new openness from Facebook means that we should be seeing more data like this in the future.

Hurrah and hurrah again.

I’m also left wondering, why on Earth wasn’t this picked up by more trades?

Whatley out.

 

PS. Reading this on your mobile? Best check Facebook…

PPS. Contrary to popular opinion, this isn’t ‘the first time’ Facebook have admitted this algorithm exists. They did that back in 2010

*To get the exclusive number, you’d need Facebook to release a deep dive on this image. But they haven’t done that yet. So we wait.

 

 

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Facebook Hashtags. Wait, what?

That’s right: According to sources, Hashtags are coming to Facebook.

YEAH?

AND?

WHY IS THIS IMPORTANT? 

I’ll tell you -

1. Ownership
Let’s get one thing clear: Hashtags are not owned by Twitter. They’re used heavily throughout the platform, of course they are, they help track conversation topics. In fact, Twitter is so entrenched in the hashtag that they’ve now taken to describing themselves as ‘The shortest distance between you and what interests you’.

The ‘you’ in that equation is the @name. The ‘what interests you’ part of it? The hashtag. Hashtags really are great for connecting users to the information that they’re looking (on Twitter at least). You know what else they’re good for?  Ad sales. But we’ll come back to that one…

Hashtags are used across other (mostly lesser known) social networks but when your average consumer sees them today, it’s fair to say they immediately associate them with Twitter.

Not for much longer.

Ps. Y’know where else Hashtags are used? Instagram. And you remember who owns Instagram, right? Right. 

2. Graph Search
With the advent of Facebook Graph Search, Facebook really needs to start to getting to grips with meaningful conversation data. What do I mean by that? On a panel recently about Facebook’s latest search product, one of the issues that we discussed was the potentially huge disparity between the two elements of data that will be mined via Graph Search; behavioural and surrendered.

I might Like something, but that might just be to gain access to an app or a game or whatever. That’s behavioural and that’s sketchy at best. Surrendered is even worse; Facebook is trusting its users to enter their personal information fully and honestly – this simply does not happen.  These two issues combined do not an accurate search engine make.

However.

Using hashtags to badge up Facebook posts suddenly creates anchors within user conversations. First, these anchors are searchable and second, you can sell ads against them.

‘Oh hey Twitter, nice ad model you got there. We’ll take it. ‘

You get the idea.

3. Discovery  
Last month, Dan Rose, VP of Partnerships at Facebook, made it very clear that television and the second screen was definitely an area that Facebook was going to move in to. Perhaps not immediately, but soon.

Being able to tag your Facebook post against say, the TV show that you’re watching? That’ll be one major step towards that paradigm.

Earlier this week I wrote about what Twitter’s new Ad API meant for social media ad-planning. With Facebook now introducing (their own version of?) the hashtag, this same model applies: choose your TV show, pick your audience, choose your time slot, go buy ads…

OK, so obviously this won’t happen overnight; Facebook has a billion users and it needs to shepherd them in slowly, v-e-r-y  s-l-o-w-l-y…

But with the new News Feed inbound, Facebook hashtags (and their ads) could soon be just but a click away…

 

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