This week in Facebook news

do you remember facebook political ads if not youre alone

Not a week goes by that Facebook doesn’t issue a handful of releases or create a buzz around itself, and this one was no exception. Here are five of the top Facebook stories you may have missed from the last five days.

Mitt Romney is bleeding Facebook friends

romney facebook page bleeding of friends

With the election over and along with it Mitt Romney’s campaign, and now Mitt Romney’s Facebook page is stuck in social media purgatory. Campaigners will no longer be updating the page, it just simply “exists.” Whatever the motivation may be, followers of the former presidential candidate’s Facebook page are unliking Romney in droves. “Refresh the page – 12.08 million. Refresh again – 15 less,” Caitlin Dewey of The Washington Post wrote when she first realized what was transpiring. We checked it out for ourselves, and indeed, we were witnessing an exodus of former followers fleeing his Facebook page – based on our eyeball calculation, we estimate about 10 followers were unliking the page every second. At this rate, should it be maintained, the “Likes” count will plummet to zero in just two weeks.

Fedex encourages shipping using its Facebook app

five facebook news you need to know from this week ship friends

Just in time for the holiday season, and not long after Facebook Gifts was officially announced, Fedex is making a foray into making shipping social – sort of. Fedex’s newly launched Facebook App is called Ship To Friends, which is undoubtedly inspired by Facebook Gift’s own shipping process. On one hand, when we checked out the app we could see the value in the fact that it simplifies the process of shipping a package on the Web. If you’ve ever tried shipping a package on Fedex’s own website, you’ll know how frustrating it is to navigate as well as figure out the price and size of the package. Ship To Friends takes you through the process, with the prices listed clearly alongside delivery hours and dates. It makes you wonder why’s native shipping feature isn’t as easy to use as its Facebook app.

A couple caveats to note from our testing is that that international shipping isn’t supported and the app doesn’t send a shipping request to friends — meaning you can’t request that your friends enter in their own mailing addresses, which is a feature offered on Facebook Gifts. 

Facebook testing audio notifications

facebook audio notification settings

You might remember the days of the iconic “You’ve got mail” alert. It was annoying yet endearing, and apparently something similar may be heading to Facebook. Facebook confirmed with Venturebeat that alerts, which ping users when they receive new notifications, are being tested selectively. The alerts, if rolled out to all users, can be turned on and off in the account settings page.

Popular Facebook users can now get in on Promoted Posts

Facebook promoted post for over 5000 friends

The upper echelons of Facebook users, who have more than 5,000 friends and/or subscribers, were unable to reap the “benefits” of the Promoted Posts advertising product that Facebook launched last month. Namely journalists, celebrities, politicians, and anyone else who would most likely have thousands of subscribers are the ones this change applies to. For those of us that fit in the 5,000 friends and fewer category are only charged $7 for a post to be promoted. It’s being reported that these users are being charged a premium of $49 to promote a post to friends and subscribers.

Facebook inflates egos, users lose self-control

Facebook can be addicting for some people, and for others it can boost self-esteem. A study by researchers from The University of Pittsburgh and Columbia University examined the effects of social media on human behavior and according to the paper, users are selective on what they share online and tend to portray themselves on social networks in a positive matter. This effectively boosts their self esteem. Interestingly enough, the study mentions that people looking in a mirror tend not to feel good about themselves. With this in mind, the researchers found a correlation between high self esteem and self control. “Enhanced self esteem from using a social network can have a detrimental effect on behavior,” says researchers Keith Wilcox of Columbia Business School, and Andrew T. Stephen of The University of Pittsburgh. “We present evidence suggesting that greater social network use is associated with a higher body-mass index and higher levels of credit card debt for individuals with strong ties to their social network.”

The root of the problem is that “elevated feelings of self-worth can lead to more impulsive or indulgent behavior. Citing Wilcox’s previous research, the study adds that inflated feelings of pride, which is related to self esteem, “results in more indulgent choices in subsequent tasks that are unrelated to the source of pride.”

We’ll go ahead and add this to the mountain of behavioral effects social networks are having on us. 

Facebook testing commenting threads

facebook comment threading

If you’ve ever cursed Facebook for overlooking the ability to comment on a comment, it looks like you’re in luck. A blogger and social media manager of Kairay Media discovered that comment threading was enabled on a Filipino Facebook page.

This feature, limited to a small test group, enables users to reply to comments. You’ll see a “Reply” button next to “Like” on the original comments. The replies to the comments can also be “Liked.” A third level of commenting isn’t supported. Facebook confirmed that the structure, as of testing, is as follows:

1. Comment

2. Reply to comment

Facebook’s spokesperson also provided us with the same statement, explaining the purpose of the feature:

“We are testing a new way to add comments to a post on Facebook. With this test you will be able to reply to another comment as well as the original post. This is just a small test at this stage.”

Comment threading, while being tested out at a limited scale, is a much awaited feature that many of us will be glad to embrace. For one thing, it should help to contain those heated arguments or side conversations in its own thread without disrupting the general flow.


Google Maps adds a new tab showing restaurants’ most popular dishes

Google Maps is testing a new Popular tab for restaurants to make it easier to order a tasty-looking dish you've spotted on the app. Some users are seeing it under the Menu tab, which already includes meal information for diners.
Social Media

Facebook F8 Developer Conference: Complete Coverage

When developers want to know what Facebook is working on, they head to F8. The annual two-day conference highlights the company’s latest technologies in development and is an opportunity to meet Facebook engineers. It’s also where CEO…
Social Media

Twitter: Now you can jazz up your retweets with GIFs, photos, and videos

Twitter for Android, iOS, and its mobile site now lets you add GIFs, photos, and videos to retweets. The feature, which the company said people have been asking for, can be enabled in a few quick taps.
Social Media

Tinder Lite will soon launch to bring the dating game into emerging markets

Tinder Lite, a lightweight version of the dating app, will soon launch in emerging markets where access to data may be limited. The app will look to bring more people into the dating game, as Tinder looks to maintain its growth.
Social Media

Update WhatsApp! Sophisticated attack installs spyware with just a call

A WhatsApp vulnerability left Android and iOS devices open to attack from sophisticated surveillance software that could be installed simply by calling the targeted person through the app.
Social Media

Twitter sorry for mistakenly storing and sharing some users’ location data

Twitter has revealed that a bug led to it accidentally storing and sharing location data for a number of iOS users. The issue, which has now been fixed, affected those operating more than one Twitter account from the app.

Photographer sues Ariana Grande after she posts his images of her on Instagram

A professional photographer is suing Ariana Grande after she posted photos on Instagram that he'd taken of her. Grande used the post to promote one of her albums, but the photographer says she used the photos without permission.
Social Media

Save me: How to download Instagram photos from any device

Browsing photos in Instagram is one thing, but saving them is another. Until recently, it wasn't easy to get your pics and data off the 'gram and saved elsewhere, but now you can download Instagram photos with just a few clicks.
Social Media

Instagram ditches plans for stand-alone Direct messaging app

Instagram is shuttering it's stand-alone messaging app, Direct, after testing it since 2017. While the messaging features remain intact inside Instagram, the separate app will be discontinued in the next few weeks.
Social Media

6 easy ways to archive all of your favorite Instagram videos

Saving Instagram videos should be just as easy as taking a screenshot. So, we've put together a list of the best apps and tools that save your favorite Instagram videos onto your phone or computer.
Social Media

Instagram’s new Explore grid tempts you to open your wallet

Instagram has made some changes to its Explore tab that might tempt you into the occasional shopping spree. It's also planning to add Stories to the grid, mixing them up with the existing photos and videos.
Social Media

Be the master of your own Insta-verse with multiple Instagram accounts

Whether you own a small business or have separate Instagram accounts for your five cats, we'll walk you through the process of switching between your multiple accounts on your Apple or Android devices.
Social Media

A fond farewell to Grumpy Cat, the internet’s most famous feline

The worst day ever. We say farewell and offer a fond remembrance for Grumpy Cat, the internet's most famous frowning feline, meme and a genuine sweetheart, who died at the age of seven. Exceptionally even tempered and tolerant, Grumpy Cat…

Treat yo' selfie with one of these 13 apps made to beautify your pics

Selfies might be a phenomenon second only to karaoke, but they're not the easiest thing in the world to create. Thankfully, these awesome selfie apps for Android and iOS will make beautifying your self-portraits easier than capturing them.