YouTube Introduces Tool for Citizen Journalists

w3207tv_300 copyYouTube has some great video.  You can find video from just about anywhere, from any event, with almost anyone.  And since anyone can shoot a video and post it, news organizations often showcase YouTube videos from events that they personally don’t have footage from.  Of course this played a crucial role earlier this year during the national election in Iran, when journalists were banned from reporting there.  Instead, the citizens of Iran took out their cameras and shot video and posted it to various sites all over the web.  

However, actually finding a specific video among millions of others can be a bit tricky sometimes.  A new tool designed by YouTube aims to change that. YouTube Direct will help connect websites connect with its users, most specifically news organizations with citizen journalists.    (more…)

Can You Tell Me How To Get To… Twitter Street?

twitterstreetTraveling through a foreign country where you can’t really speak the language,  and looking at street names that you can’t even begin to pronounce can be quite challenging.  I know this from previous experience, traveling all over Europe and South America. 

I remember most specifically in Berlin, Germany, the streets of Kurfürstendamm and Dimitroffstraße.  Trying to ask for directions to these streets was near impossible.  I later learned that locals can’t even pronounce these streets, and that they resort to nicknames.

When I was little, I remember thinking how cool it would be if I could name all the streets in my town.  I’d name a street for every member of my family, and then have meaningful words become street names as well.  While I’ve been able to do this virtually in games like The Sims for some time now, being able to actually name a street  is finally possible. (more…)

Posting Photos to Twitter Simplified in U.K.

camera-phone-photos copyNo matter where you go nowadays, someone nearby is either tweeting, taking a new profile picture for their MySpace page, or shooting a video to post on YouTube. 

The world of social media is all around us.  Twitter has been a great source of information for breaking news this year, since you are able to tweet from just about anywhere. You are able to update your status through text message, aka SMS (Short Message Service).  However, when it comes to posting a picture from your phone onto Twitter, you must have a smartphone and a Twitter app.  Starting today, that all changes.  Twitter users in the U.K. are now able to post pictures directly from their mobile phone via MMS (Multimedia Messaging Service).

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YouTube Deal Suggests Content Counts

youtubeuni copyIt’s well-documented by now that Google has lost money on YouTube since acquiring the popular video site some three years ago. Back in July, Google CEO Eric Schmidt told Reuters that he was pleased with YouTube’s trajectory and believed the site would become profitable in the near future.

Analysts and industry critics were quick to ponder how the search giant could hope to make their acquisition profitable. After all, the cost of streaming so many videos couldn’t possibly be offset by advertising. Or could it? (more…)

Social Media Words Enter Official Lexicon

Picture 3“Word: something that is said. A speech sound or series of speech sounds that symbolizes and communicates a meaning usually without being divisible into smaller units capable of independent use.”  That’s the definition of a word, according to Merriam-Webster. 

The world is full of them.  In fact, there are more than 258,000 words in the English language.  They range from everyday words to silly words like supercalifragilisticexpialidocious.  While most of us can actually pronounce supercalifragilisticexpialidocious, the longest word in the English dictionary is Pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis, which I’m not sure anyone can really pronounce.  Want to try pronouncing Taumatawhakatangihangakoauauotamateaturipukakapikimaungahoronukupokaiwhenuakitanatahul? No, I didn’t just hit a bunch of keys on the keyboard, either.  It’s actually the Maori name for a hill in New Zealand, and is officially the world’s longest name for a place.

These past few years, pop culture influenced which words make it into the English dictionary. Beyonce’s “Bootylicious” was added to the dictionary a few years ago, while the world of Harry Potter helped “muggle,” a person who possesses no magical powers, reserve a spot in the English dictionary as well.  While pop culture has had a significant impact on the world, it looks like it has stepped aside as social media starts to influence the world even more. (more…)

Page Speed Could Determine Search Rank

internet-speed1In an interview over the weekend with WebProNews, Matt Cutts, software engineer for Google, had suggested that a site’s speed could determine where it shows up in Google searches. 

“We’re starting to think more and more about should speed be a factor in Google’s rankings,” says Cutts.  “A lot of people within Google think that the web should be fast, it should be a good experience.  And so it’s sort of fair to say if you’re a fast site, maybe you should get a little bit of a bonus. Or maybe if you have a really awfully slow site, users don’t want that as much.” (more…)

Twitter Study Shows When We Tweet

twitterclockTwitter is climbing the charts as one of everyone’s favorite social media tools.  A new study released some interesting facts about the micro-blogging website, which allows you to send a message to all your followers in 140 characters or less.  Pingdom, a Europe based company, tracked Twitter for three weeks, trying to figure out when and how much users tweet.  It seems like a simple report, but it’s actually quite interesting.

Over the three weeks, the report found that on average over 27.3 million tweets were sent every day.  If you break that down, that’s an average of 1,138,772 tweets per hour.  It’s obvious and noted that Americans have the largest presence on the site. (more…)

NASA’s Tweetup Has Liftoff

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Last month, we told you about NASA’s Tweet-up contest, where 100 lucky Twitter’s would be invited to watch Space Shuttle Atlantis take off.  The shuttle took off successfully at Monday at 2:28 EST, for an 11 day space mission and deliver necessary spare parts to the International Space Station 200 miles above the Earth, while those 100 lucky Twitter users stood by and shared their experience with the rest of the world through the social media site.

NASA had developed a special NASA Tweet-Up Twitter account, where they had created a List of attendees of which anyone on Twitter could follow and watch tweets come in live from the event.  The Tweet-up was a 2 day event, which gave Twitterer’s a VIP look a the inside works of NASA, and a front row view of the launch from the media circle at the Kennedy Space Center. (more…)

Give It a Shot: Google’s Vaccination Tracker

google-map-live-swine-flu-o_Many of us consult Google Maps when planning a road trip, and the application is always useful for locating a nearby pizza delivery place. Apparently, its utility doesn’t end there. With flu season hitting its seasonal stride and concerns about the H1N1 virus still running rampant, the folks at Google have updated their mapping app accordingly.

The new feature, accessible at google.com/flushot, can locate sources for regular flu shots and the H1N1 vaccine as well. In place of the traditional push pin graphics that mark potential destinations on Google Maps, the flu shot tracker substitutes little red and blue syringes. Blue indicates a source for H1N1 shots and red designates seasonal shots. (more…)