Background on the Yahoo-Tumblr deal
Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer has been looking to revitalize Yahoo since hopping aboard last year, examining several companies for possible acquisition. But it wasn’t until early this morning that Yahoo’s big push to gain the trust of a younger online audience was finally confirmed with a $1.1-billion purchase of Tumblr.
But many of the Tumblr faithful are concerned about Yahoo’s shaky track record in properly handling fresh acquisitions:
Yahoo has a history of buying promising young companies only to let them waste away. Acquisitions under previous Yahoo chiefs such as Geocities, an early social networking site, and Flickr, the popular photo sharing website, were long neglected within the company.
Mayer, aware of the widespread concerns of an audience that contains many users who weren’t even alive when Yahoo began, maintains that Tumblr will be independent:
We promise not to screw it up. Tumblr is incredibly special and has a great thing going. We will operate Tumblr independently. David Karp will remain CEO. The product roadmap, their team, their wit and irreverence will all remain the same as will their mission to empower creators to make their best work and get it in front of the audience they deserve.
Read more on the Yahoo-Tumblr deal via tech reporter Jessica Guynn, or sound off below on whether Yahoo’s move is brilliant, or doomed to be a bust.
Everyone, I’m elated to tell you that Tumblr will be joining Yahoo.
Before touching on how awesome this is, let me try to allay any concerns: We’re not turning purple. Our headquarters isn’t moving. Our team isn’t changing. Our roadmap isn’t changing. And our mission – to empower creators to…
The rumors turned out to be true: Yahoo has purchased Tumblr for $1.1 billion, in what may be the first corporate acquisition announced via .gif.
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Today in terrifying fake news
The Associated Press’ Twitter account was hacked earlier today, sending out a false report of explosions at the White House. The tweet was swiftly debunked, no report was sent on the AP news wire and Twitter has since suspended the account.
But that didn’t stop some from immediately believing the fraudulent tweet. Note the sudden plunge in the Dow Jones Industrial Average at the time the tweet went out:
In the wake of the now-notorious tweet, and the outrage last week over a number of grassroots amateur detectives on Reddit working to solve the Boston Marathon bombings, it’s important to remember that not everything online should be taken at face value.
Photos: Twitter, Google
The Federal Government on Tumblr
Increasingly, Federal agencies (like us here at the Bureau of Land Management) are using Tumblr to share photos, science, events, initiatives, and other great content with the Tumblr community. Here’s a list of some awesome Federal government blogs you should be following on Tumblr. It’s probably not exhaustive, but these are the ones we know about that post more than occasionally.
Reblog and help share the word:
America’s Great Outdoors: The Department of the Interior (our parent agency) shares an amazing photo a day of your public lands.
Archivist of the United States: The Tumblr of our “collector in chief” at the National Archives, David S Ferriero.
Bureau of Reclamation: Reclamation, and Interior Dept agency, is the largest wholesale water supplier and the second largest producer of hydroelectric power in the United States, with operations and facilities in the 17 Western States.
Congress in the Archives: Since the First Congress in 1789, the records of the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate have documented the history of the legislative branch. The National Archives helps you explore this history.
Conservation at Work: The Natural Resources Conservation Service, part of the Department of Agriculture, posts photos of conservation on farms and other private lands across the nation.
Fish and Wildlife Service: The Pacific Region of the FWS encompasses extraordinary ecological diversity. Photos, science, and more.
Internal Revenue Service: Because who doesn’t want tax information on Tumblr? Useful tips, videos, etc., straight from the IRS.
My Public Lands: The awesomeness of the Bureau of Land Management, which manages more than 245 million acres of amazing lands, as told by students, interns, and newer employees.
Our Presidents: One space to bring the past 13 Presidents together. Discover behind-the-scenes history here. Managed by the National Archives.
National Archives: News and current events from the United States National Archives and Records Administration whose holdings include the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, military records, Presidential records, and millions of other documents related to the Federal Government.
Peace Corps: Life is calling. How far will you go? Get up close with the amazing work done by peace corps volunteers.
U.S. Department of State: Videos, photos, testimony, and updates from the State Department. Foreign policy updates on Tumblr—how cool is that?
Today’s Document: Highlighting interesting documents the National Archives’ holdings—both the well-known and the obscure—to observe historical events (usually the significant events but sometimes just the curious ones).
USA.gov: Government made easy. On Tumblr. Enough said.
US National Archives Exhibits: Images and stories from the National Archives related to “Searching for the Seventies: the DOCUMERICA Photography Project,” the newest exhibition on display at the Archives’ facility in Washington, DC.
But wait, there’s more!
Preservation at the National Archives: All things preservation at the National Archives and Records Administration. Posts to this site come from all of the Preservation Programs departments, including: Conservation, St. Louis Preservation, and National Preservation Programs.
John F. Kennedy Presidential Library: Dedicated to the memory of our nation’s 35th president and to all those who through the art of politics seek a new and better world.
LBJ Time Machine: Taking a trip through time, from the birth of Lyndon Johnson in 1908 through 2013 at the LBJ Library and Museum.
FDR Library: Follow the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum as we count down to the rededication of the Roosevelt Library and the opening of the new permanent museum exhibits.
The Tumblrweed Times from the National Archives at Riverside, CA: We are the National Archives at Riverside—a unit of the U.S. National Archives. Our records document the Federal government in the western states of Arizona, southern California and Clark County, Nevada.
Talk about your comprehensive lists!
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The photo above, showing Boston the night after the tragic marathon bombing, was tweeted yesterday by Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield from the International Space Station in a sigh of solidarity:
Our crew just heard about the horrible events at the Boston Marathon. We all pass our condolences and thoughts to everyone affected.— Chris Hadfield (@Cmdr_Hadfield)
A year ago, Tumblr did something unprecedented — we created an editorial team of experienced journalists and editors assigned to cover Tumblr as a living, breathing community. The team’s mandate was to tell the stories of Tumblr creators in a truly thoughtful way — focusing on the people, their…
ICYMI - Tumblr’s editorial team, which put together some great work, has come to a close. Wish them the best of luck wherever they may go!
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Fuck yeah! Tumblr is now made up of 100 million blogs.
Beyonce - getting the same visibility as Tumblr’s inception. Nonetheless, congrats to Tumblr, and a big thanks to those among the 100 million who follow us on here!
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More legal action likely for Facebook’s bungled IPO
Nasdaq OMX Group Inc. may plan to repay brokerages $62 million lost during the disastrous launch of Facebook’s IPO, which morphed from a minor slip-up to an investment debacle last year. An estimated $500 million was lost due to the delays and general chaos caused by Nasdaq’s insufficient planning for demand of the stock.
But waiting in the wings is the possibility of the government or other interested parties filing their own legal complaints against Nasdaq.
Plus, there’s the SEC probe into the matter that has yet to be released, which probably won’t like the handling of Facebook’s IPO.
Photos: Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times
You are what you ‘like,’ - at least on Facebook
Researchers at the University of Cambridge have taken a look at just a hint of the massive amount of personal information and actions stored by Facebook, and their findings confirm a privacy advocate’s worst nightmare: You may not have to tell Facebook about who you are, so long as they know how you interactions on the site.
Even traits that users of social networks may not want to broadcast — including smoking behavior, drug use or sexuality — can be sussed out pretty accurately by their patterns of likes, the researchers found after combing through data from 58,466 Facebook members in the U.S.
But for Facebook, all of that data, and the conclusions that can be drawn from it, is just an extension of the status quo.
From Facebook public policy manager Fred Wolens:
“No matter the vehicle for information — a bumper sticker, yard sign, logos on clothing or other data found online — it has already been proven that it is possible for social scientists to draw conclusions about personal attributes based on these characteristics.”
Photo: Associated Press
Say hello to the new news feed
Facebook debuted the latest news feed design earlier today, hoping that users will quickly warm to another change on the world’s largest social network.
From technology reporter Salvador Rodriguez:
Before presenting the new design, Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg explained Facebook wants to create “the best personalized newspaper we can”for every one of their users. The new feeds are intended to accomplish that goal.
Facebook currently has a waiting list open for those who want to recieve the new feed as soon as possible.
So does Facebook’s latest revamp look like a winner, or is it another change to the site that does little but elicit groans from users?
Twitter is not the world: Or America, for that matter. In a new study from Pew Research, reactions to events on Twitter often are detached from society’s reactions as a whole. While Pew found that Twitter consensus moves back and forth from liberal to conservative, what really sticks out is just how much more negative Twitter discussions can be.
For both [presidential] candidates, negative comments exceeded positive comments by a wide margin throughout the fall campaign season. But from September through November, Romney was consistently the target of more negative reactions than was Obama.
And as always, it’s important to understand the limitations of Twitter’s reach.
The overall reach of Twitter is modest. In the Pew Research Center’s 2012 biennial news consumption survey, just 13% of adults said they ever use Twitter or read Twitter messages; only 3% said they regularly or sometimes tweet or retweet news or news headlines on Twitter.
Photo: Yasuyoshi Chiba / AFP
Using data from his Opte Project, Hungarian physicist Albert-László Barabási, author of the mind-bending Linked: How Everything Is Connected to Everything Else and What It Means, says that you’re connected to everyone else on the web via 19 clicks or less.
Now that’s an incredible visualization.
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Tributes funneling Sandy Hook conspiracies
The number of tribune pages dedicated to those killed or affected by the tragedy in Newtown, Conn. that have turned into stomping grounds for those indulging in conspiracy theories about the shootings has now attracted the attention of lawmakers.
Connecticut Sens. Richard Blumenthal and Chris Murphy, along with Rep. Elizabeth Esty, all Democrats, have gone so far as to formally request that Facebook remove the pages.
Said the representatives:
“Many [pages] give the appearance they were created by loved ones in the names of the victims. Unfortunately, many of these pages have become vehicles for harassment, intimidation and possibly financial fraud.”
Facebook responded by promising to “be vigilant” in flagging inappropriate materials.
Sexist Social Media? Our senior opinions producer and blogger Alexandra LeTellier, always a proponent of the conversations that spring up through social media, has written about her own realization about the gender inequities that still remain on Twitter and Facebook.
Further inspired by Laura Bates’ recent story in the Guardian, LeTellier’s eyes were opened when she realized just how many conversations and posts made light of issues like rape and domestic violence.
Every person has their price, and for a 14-year-old Boston girl, her price to quit Facebook is $200.
In light of Paul Baier giving his daughter $200 to stay away from Facebook for five months, we just have to ask: How much would it take for you to give up your social network of choice for five months, or even forever?