The following article has nothing to do with real estate, but I have long encouraged real estate agents to study marketing publication Advertising Age to improve their business, therefore, given today’s events, I have a need to distance myself from this type of blatant disregard for fact and for insulting religious bashing.
Today’s Advertising Age article entitled “The Coming End of YouTube, Twitter and Facebook Socialism,” author Simon Dumenco reveals an offensive amount of ignorance and uses a misinformed point of view to make what could have been an incredible point. Dumenco aims to convince readers that the millions of dollars pumped into revenue-less models like Twitter equates to socialism and I can’t say I disagree.
SO what’s the problem?
In an era of the informed consumer, journalistic disgrace is easier to spot and for years, columnists have gone unchecked, until now. Now, I can research anything a columnist says as fact or fiction and when fiction is expressed either as opinion or as fact, it is insulting to the social media audience who is not only well informed, but is prepared to talk about misinformation they are being force fed.
After reading Dumenco’s article for the seventh time, I couldn’t get past several of his assertions, let’s see if you can pin point the problem in this excerpt:
“Last week, according to the Times of London, Cardinal Sean Brady of Ireland told the country’s Catholics to ‘Make someone the gift of a prayer through text, Twitter or e-mail every day. Such a sea of prayer is sure to strengthen our sense of solidarity with one another.’
Oh, my. That’s a nice sentiment, but Twitter really doesn’t need more users around the world tweeting in ways that can never be monetized.”
Did you catch that last line? Users “tweeting in ways that can never be monetized” is a bad thing? Oh, forgive us all for using a social network to NETWORK SOCIALLY. I guess Dumenco’s Twitter timeline which consists of nothing more than links to what he’s reading at the moment is superior to being social (aka having a dialogue) in a social network.
It gets worse…
Dumenco opined with his last statement and that’s fine, we’re all entitled to our own opinion- he’s against non-monetized tweets (although I’m not clear how he has monetized his own). But he goes on to say:
“Fortunately, given how retro-conservative Pope Benedict is, he seems more likely to issue a papal encyclical condemning Twitter. We all know it’s more likely to enable sin — pride! sloth! — than piety.“
This is the point in the article where I was insulted. Forget the religious implications, this journalist clearly doesn’t know his facts and like I said- in the era of the informed consumer, that’s the cardinal sin of journalism.
Know your facts before you speak
The Vatican has always embraced technology, dating back to pamphlet distribution at early onset of print publication, to the Vatican Radio station launch in 1931 all the way to modern web technologies. The Pope publicly said in 2006 that technology should be embraced to “spread the good news” and has had live broadcasts of his addresses for years. SInce launching the Vatican YouTube channel in January, 159 videos are already uploaded and Pope Benedict encourages others to use social media to network around common human interests, to support others and to do good works through social networking.
In January, Pope Benedict said, “I am conscious of those who constitute the so-called digital generation and I would like to share with them, in particular, some ideas concerning the extraordinary potential of the new technologies, if they are used to promote human understanding and solidarity. These technologies are truly a gift to humanity and we must endeavour to ensure that the benefits they offer are put at the service of all human individuals and communities, especially those who are most disadvantaged and vulnerable.” That’s a far cry from condemnation.
Insulting our intelligence is never a good idea
This faux pas could have been equally offensive even if written about Budism, Hinduism, the Muslim faith, etc…. aside from the religious implications, as a columnist, Dumenco’s job is to know better than to shoot his mouth off without understanding the words being used or having any facts to back up his opinion. I’ve unsubscribed from Advertising Age which before today I believed to be one of the best resources available for marketing data and analysis.
The aforementioned article is extremely offensive, and a Cardinal’s words of hope was twisted into an ignorant, misinformed assumption that is unbecoming of a “journalist.” The Palin bashing was tolerable, but Dumenco could have skipped the entire anti-Catholic sentiment and made an excellent point without it.
Instagram makes IGTV videos more accessible with automatic closed captions
(SOCIAL MEDIA) This new feature for Instagram opens avenues for viewers who don’t or can’t use audio on IGTV videos, creating more accessibility for all.
In an effort to expand accessibility efforts, IGTV videos on Instagram will now include an auto captions option. While its parent company, Facebook, has included auto captions on uploaded videos since 2017, this new-for-Instagram feature is expected to widen audience viewership and increase potential viewing by those who prefer watching sans-audio.
In a statement by Facebook, the company states: “While there is no shortage of information, not everyone can access it. It needs to be available to the hundreds of millions of people in the world who are deaf or hard of hearing. According to the World Health Organization, over 5% of the world’s population – or 466 million people – have disabling hearing loss, and that is projected to increase to over 900 million by 2050.”
Current events have made the need for auto captions even more critical for inclusion. “The rapid spread of the COVID-19 pandemic caused a spike in both the supply and demand of public health information. Several local and state governments, that were accustomed to holding live press conferences but didn’t have the resources, staff or technology to record, stream, and caption their live events, turned to Facebook Live. Several governments also discovered that video captioning was not just a nice-to-have, but imperative, especially in the absence of available sign language interpreters,” states the company.
Currently, Facebook provides auto captions for videos in 16 languages and has announced that Instagram’s IGTV will have access to the same features. The caption accuracy is determined by the video’s audio quality, although AI technology is constantly improving in both precision and speed.
Additionally, branded content ads are likely to see an increase in consumer interaction. Recently published data by Facebook shows ads visually designed for watching with the sound off have 48% more relevance to viewers and a 42% higher purchase intent. As auto captions normalize across social media, users can expect ad content to utilize this feature to the fullest.
New tool organizes your Reddit feed (and makes it actually usable)
(Social Media) Reddit’s UI hasn’t always been super intuitive. ‘Deck for Reddit’ organizes your feed into themed columns, making it way more user-friendly.
Love it or hate it, the mass collection of forums on Reddit have some form of content for everyone. The simple UX design places content straight down the middle of the screen and the infinite scrolling feature allows you to view a limitless amount of content from cute puppy images to cringe-worthy videos. However, its simplicity isn’t very practical, and is something that I think should be voted down.
Yes, Reddit has come a long way from its previous text-heavy form, but there is still a lot to improve on. Charles Yang, a frustrated Reddit user, has created a web app that could change all that: Deck for Reddit, a desktop optimized, alternative way to browse your favorite forums.
“I built it to show as much content as possible at a glance, while respecting your screen real-estate,” writes Yang.
Currently, the web app is in open beta. With a very similar experience to Tweetdeck, this Reddit tool seems to hold some promise.
On the far left side of the website, there is a list of icons with all the subreddits you’ve subscribed to. Clicking on an icon will take you directly to that subreddit column. This is very convenient for users with a bunch of subscriptions. Additionally, by making several subreddits visible on the screen all at once, Yang succeeds in his goal of taking advantage of the vast empty white space that Reddit failed to use.
From this display, you can click on a post, and it instantly expands to show all the comments. Hit the back button, and the post collapses. Now, you are back to seeing all the posts related to that subreddit. And at the top of each subreddit, you can easily sort the content by what’s new, popular, and trendy. Engagement has never felt easier.
Along with everything else, this extension also adds another great feature in setting customizations. The theme can be switched from light to dark mode. Fonts, text size, and even the shape of the subreddit icons can all be adjusted. Preferences can be changed to hide viewed submissions and reduce animation motion. And if you’re slacking off at work or want to chill, you can set it to hide NSFW content.
Overall, Deck for Reddit makes the user experience smooth sailing, and it truly makes Reddit the “front page of the internet.”
Instagram now lets you create and share fundraisers
(SOCIAL MEDIA) If you’ve been wanting to start a fundraiser for something you care about, Instagram’s new feature lets you do just that. Go check it out!
Instagram announced last week that it has launched a test for a Personal Fundraiser tool on its platform. The feature will allow users to start their own fundraiser if it complies with guidelines or choose an existing cause to support. The launch began in some US, UK, and Ireland markets and is available on Android and iOS.
In its announcement, the company confirmed that since January, more than $100 million has been raised for COVID-19 across Facebook and Instagram (also owned by Facebook), citing that donations on Instagram have doubled in the US in the past 30 days. The announcement said, “from people raising money to buy medical equipment for Black Lives Matter protesters, rebuilding Black-owned small businesses affected by COVID-19 and funding educational resources related to racial justice, people are eager to mobilize around causes they care about.”
Personal Fundraisers are short-term and meant to serve time-sensitive causes, with the initial duration lasting 30 days with the option to extend for an additional 30 days. Users must be 18 to create a fundraiser and have a designated bank account in which funds can be deposited. Donations will be processed through Facebook Pay, which also powers Instagram’s new shopping features. The platform covers fees for non-profits, but not for Personal Fundraisers. Donors can choose to keep their information hidden from the public, but organizers will be able to see user names and donation amounts.
To start a Personal Fundraiser, users with access to the feature can tap “Edit Profile”, “Add Fundraiser”, followed by “Raise Money”. They can then choose a photo, select the fundraiser category, and write out a story to encourage donations. When approved, users will be able to raise funds.
Instagram says it will expand the number of users who have access to this feature in the months ahead, as well as give users access to share fundraisers both in their Feed and within Stories. Fundraising features already offered by the company include Donation Stickers for Stories and a Live Donations feature for live streams.
This feature is similar to the fundraising feature already available on Facebook, Instagram’s parent company.
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