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Facebook Takes Aim at Snapchat with its Brand-New Slingshot

This week Facebook launched a brand-new “ephemeral” messaging app called Slingshot. And like David taking aim at the mighty Goliath, Facebook is betting Slingshot can take down its archrival Snapchat.

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You Won’t Believe What Facebook Did to Social Publishers

There’s a good chance that what you’re seeing in your Facebook News Feed is changing. In fact, it already has.

And if you’re a social publisher, the news is bad.

Facebook recently tweaked its algorithms to encourage sharing of “quality” content. What does that mean? Well, it simply means that Facebook is showing you less viral content — well, less of a certain kind of viral content, that is.

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Newsjacking the Weather: A Social Media Win for Wendy’s

Dowitcher Designs HQ may be located in sunny Santa Barbara, CA, but we’re not disconnected from the rest of the country. And for the past few days we’ve been hearing all about this nasty arctic air mass that’s dipped down from, well, the arctic, and right into the middle of the continental US.

It’s news-worthy, for sure. Today, alone, at least 45 daily record lows were shattered. And I didn’t even need to check the news to know — social media saw to that.

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What your Facebook Updates Say about You, and How Social Media is Changing Research

What do you post about on Facebook?

Maybe you’re the kind to post updates about the daily details — what you ate for breakfast, what errands you ran, and what you wore to run them. Maybe you’re the kind to post only when you have brag-worthy news, like your recent promotion or the rare tickets you scored to see a massively popular band. Maybe most of your posts are about your feelings, or your kids, or your job, or your romantic relationship, or your hobbies.

But what does your Facebook status update really say about you? And can others suss out your personality type, age, and gender based solely on the words you use?

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Facebook’s New “Company Town” and the Future of Life and Work

Would you want to live where you work?

With the overall trend toward a better work/life balance over the past few years, it seems to make sense to eliminate the daily commute between your house and your job. But for others, that may strike a little too, uh, close to home.

Facebook is wagering that its employees will appreciate the convenience. It has just unveiled plans to build a $120-million, 394-unit multifamily apartment complex between its Menlo Park, CA, headquarters and its new West Campus.

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Where the Teens Are on Social Media — and Where They Aren’t

Do you remember the day you got a Facebook friend request from your grandmother?

Facebook has come a long way over the years — from a startup network for Ivy-League university students, to the number one social network on the globe. But with that popularity has come, well, a certain element of maturity.

New research from Piper Jaffray suggests that as more and more older people have joined Facebook, more and more younger people are looking to be social elsewhere.

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What’s Facebook’s EdgeRank and Why Should You Care?

Have you ever noticed the seemingly random nature of your Facebook News Feed? You’ll be scrolling through and notice that one of your friend’s stories from several hours ago appears at the top of the page, while a more recent story from another friend appears towards the bottom of the page. Why doesn’t Facebook show them in chronological order?

Well, the system isn’t as goofy as it looks. There’s a method to the madness. And whether you’re a brand or an average Joe, it’s helpful to know how, where, and why Facebook shows posts to you.

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Facebook versus Pinterest: Who’s Winning the Battle for Retail Dollars?

Honestly, I get a little tired of the constant pitting of one social media network against another. You know the drill: Facebook versus Twitter! Google versus Facebook! Instagram versus Flickr versus Pinterest!

Each network is vastly different and it’s incredibly difficult to level the metric playing field enough to officially announce an ultimate “winner” among them. What’s more, social media continues to change and shift, which means a current “winner” might not be wearing the crown anymore a few months from now.

But that constant evolution is what makes it important to keep on top of trends.

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Who Owns the Photos You Share Online? Part One

Since Facebook announced its intentions to acquire Instagram a little over a year ago, everyone’s been on pins and needles to see what — if anything — would change.

We got our first big hint last December when Instagram released its new Terms of Service, scheduled to go into effect the following month on January 19.

What happened then? Well, in short: absolute bedlam.

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Facebook to Adopt the Hashtag?

You may have heard: hashtags aren’t just for Twitter anymore.

And you, like me, may have noticed their proliferation over the past several months — Instagram recognizes them, as does Pinterest and Google+. Flickr, in fact, has recently added hashtag functionality. They appear on everything from billboards, to television commercials, to news articles, to cola bottle labels — it truly seems that I can’t go anywhere, online and off, without seeing them anymore.

Their gaining traction across a variety of platforms proves that at some point, hashtags ceased being a way for people to aggregate and organize content on Twitter, and became a standardized way for people to aggregate and organize anything — at least on the Internet.

But there’s one place where hashtags haven’t been adopted, and it perhaps has the biggest reach of all…

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