'New New' Twitter, Russians hit Facebook & Twitter, G+'s new 'Find My Face' & Instagram voted best app by Apple

by Stefano Scaglione on Tue, 12/13/2011 - 13:15

Twitter launches ‘New New’ Twitter

Last Thursday, Twitter launched a revamped version of its site, alongside brand new iPhone, Android and iPad versions. The company states that it “simplified the design to make it easier than ever to follow what you care about, connect with others and discover something new.”

The main features include a complete layout redesign, with the main timeline on the right, brand pages, re-arranged menu items and an overall faster interface. You can find out about the features in detail here.

We also put together an overview of the branded pages here.

Russians flood Facebook and Twitter to protest Russian parliamentary elections

2011 is the year of online protests. This time, it’s during Russia’s parliamentary elections. Facebook and Twitter were used to criticise and organise protests against the government after Vladimir Putin’s ‘United Russia’ party suspiciously won over 50% of the votes in parliament. Up to 50,000 people demonstrated in Moscow to annul the result. Twitter accounts have been used by both supporters and opposition to drown out hashtags and each candidate’s channels, disrupting the flow of news and information. Facebook was used to organise online and offline protests.

Party and newspaper websites reported spam phone calls featuring a prerecording saying “Putin is very good. Putin loves you. Putin makes your life happy. Love Putin and your life will fill with meaning. Putin does everything for you. Remember, Putin does everything just for you. Putin is life. Putin is light. Without Putin, life has no meaning. Putin is your protector. Putin is your saviour."

Social media boosts small business engagement with customers

A recent study by online marketing company Constant Contact found that 81% of 2,000 UK and US businesses dedicate a significant amount of time to social media activities, an 8% increase from last year. There was also a 45% increase of businesses claiming these activities worked well with their customers, and 60% agreeing that consistent online communication was necessary to maintain relationships.

Facebook was voted as the most effective network, with 86%, followed by Twitter’s 60% and LinkedIn’s 55%. But with the introduction of Twitter’s new company pages, Twitter’s use is expected to grow in the next year.

Google+ rolls out ‘Find My Face’

Unlike Facebook, G+’s ‘Find My Face’ will be an opt-in service that uses facial-recognition to offer tagging suggestions to the user. The rapidly-growing network has been putting a lot of focus on privacy, seeing as Facebook received criticism for opting users in to new features.

Apple names Instagram the top app of the year

In 2010, it was Flipboard, in 2011, it’s Instagram. Part of the annual ‘iTunes Retrospective’, Instagram was named the ‘definitive’ app of the year as it makes it “near-impossible to take a bad shot”.

Instagram is an iPhone photo sharing app that allows users to add filters and share photos in a few simple steps. It now has well over 14 million users and has been running for just over a year. There are also plans to release an Android version in the near future.

Make sure you check out our post from last week about social sharing!

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