Automate your social networks so you can put down your phone this Thanksgiving

Automate your social networks

There’s only so much you can do about your guests’ behavior on Thanksgiving; if your 15 year-old cousin won’t stop Snapchatting his ugly mug making a lewd face next to the turkey, there’s not a whole lot to be done. Try as you might (and we do encourage you to try!), there’s really only one person whose Internet addiction you can control – your own.

You don’t want to be this guy:

… But at the same time, Thanksgiving is like a perfect storm for the social Web’s most active users: Food porn, ugly and/or Fair Isle sweaters, family, time off. So we understand if you want to Instagram and Facebook over the course of the weekend. But in order to not be previously mentioned guy, here are a few services that can help you stay social without ignoring the actual people around you.

Set your tweets ahead of time

SocialOomph, formerly TweetLater, has a free service that lets you schedule tweets for a later time. After you authorize SocialOomph, choose “posting” and “create a new update” and then go ahead and do as you wish. Set a tweet to ask your followers how dinners was; request Black Friday tips; maybe even – boldly – proclaim the potatoes you will make on Thursday as better than everyone else’s. This way, you won’t have to hover over your phone, debating over the perfect 140 characters to send out over the course of Thursday and Friday.

update

Collect Black Friday news

Maybe you’re already counting on heading out into the vast wild that is Black Friday shopping, maybe you’re on the fence, trying to decide if it’s really worth it (it’s probably not). Either way, you’ll want to stay on top of all the Black Friday news, whether to be best prepared for it or to see if something can tip you into getting off that couch and standing in that line. IFTTT has recipes that send hot Black Friday tips and updates from Reddit and the New York Times to your inbox – IFTTT actually has a handful of great recipes for this specific purpose. The same can obviously be done for Cyber Monday as well. Or make your own IFTTT recipes and choose the source. 

Streamline your photo-sharing

Last year, Instagram saw a record number of people share photos on Thanksgiving commemorating the holiday. There’s no way we should expect this year to be any different – except that the number will surely only climb. There are a few ways you can automate your photo posting and sharing, though, that should help trim down on the time you’re spending staring at apps. A couple of IFTTT recipes will let you share your Instagram images across all your social channels in one fell swoop – and here’s one where you can save them all into a Flickr photo album for later use.

There are also a handful of group-photo sharing apps you can use if you want to collect images everyone at dinner is taking – you’ll have to ask them to download the app as well, but it will save you the trouble of everyone asking each other to email them the pic later. Cluster, CapsuleCam, and Tracks are all great options.

cluster app

All-in-one social checkups

If you can’t go the day without constantly checking what’s going on with your various accounts, then get an all-in-one client so you can at least make the social pit-stops quick ones. There are a variety to choose from: YoonoAlternion, and Fuse are a few places to get started. There is, of course, Hootsuite, but that’s generally used for professional means and might not have the dead-simple user interface you’re looking for such temporary use.

(Image courtesy of Robert Kneschke vis Shutterstock.com)

Social Media

This event topped Facebook’s biggest moments of the year — again

As the year comes to a close, Facebook is looking back on what users discussed most over the last year. For two years in a row, International Women's Day topped the list. So what else is on the list?
Computing

Change your mouse cursor in Windows with these quick tips

The standard mouse cursor is boring, so change it! With this guide on how to change your mouse cursor in Windows, you can choose to use one of Microsoft's pre-installed cursors or download something a bit more extravagant.
Mobile

Need to record calls on an iPhone? Check out our handy guide

Are you wondering how to record calls on your iPhone? It isn't as easy as you might think, but we'll walk you through the process of doing so with Google Voice, and identify several other apps and external voice recorders that can help.
Smart Home

Knock, knock. Who's there? With a video doorbell, you'll never have to guess

When it comes to knowing who's at your door before you actually open it, there's nothing better than a video doorbell. Plus, you can "answer" the door even if you're not home. Here are some of our favorites.
Business

How to start your online business in 6 simple steps

Making the right choices now can greatly impact your success down the line, and the last thing you want to do is spend your energy revisiting old decisions instead of growing your company.
Social Media

This band owns Twitter, according to list of top accounts and tweets for 2018

What was the biggest buzz on Twitter in 2018? Twitter's 2018 Year in Review highlights the biggest tweets, accounts, and hashtags. The most-tweeted celebrities, movies, TV shows, athletes, politicians and more in Twitter's 2018 trends.
Social Media

What do yodeling and Kylie Jenner have in common? YouTube’s top 2018 videos

In a true nod to the variety found on YouTube, the platform's top 10 list of videos from 2018 range from celebrities to sports, from perfectly tossing a picture frame on the wall to a kid yodeling in aisle 12 at Walmart.
Home Theater

It took Tom Cruise to raise awareness of this troublesome TV setting

Tom Cruise, in an unexpected PSA tweet, asks you to turn off motion interpolation on your TV, but stops short of how to do it. Here's more on the topic, along with links to a guide on how to rid your TV of the dreaded "soap opera effect."
Computing

Make a GIF of your favorite YouTube video with these great tools

Making a GIF from a YouTube video is easier today than ever, but choosing the right tool for the job isn't always so simple. In this guide, we'll teach you how to make a GIF from a YouTube video with our two favorite online tools.
Business

Amazon scouted airport locations for its cashier-free Amazon Go stores

Representatives of Amazon Go checkout-free retail stores connected with officials at Los Angeles and San Jose airports in June to discuss the possibility of cashier-free grab-and-go locations in busy terminals.
Social Media

Snapchat facial recognition could soon power a new portrait mode, code suggests

Digging into Snapchat's code suggests a handful of upcoming camera features, including a portrait mode. The feature appears to use facial recognition A.I. to blur the background. The code also suggests an updated camera interface.
Computing

Google+ continues to sink with a second massive data breach. Abandon ship now

Google+ was scheduled to shut its doors in August 2019, but the second security breach in only a few months has caused the company to move its plan forward a few months. It might be a good idea to delete your account sooner than later.
Social Media

Walkie-talkie voice messaging finally comes to Instagram

In its latest grab from messaging apps, Instagram now lets you send walkie-talkie style voice messages. Apps such as Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, Snapchat, and iMessage have offered the feature for some time.
Social Media

‘YouTube Rewind 2018’ is about to become its most disliked video ever

YouTube is about to achieve a record it really doesn't want — that of "most-disliked video." Yes, its annual recap of featuring popular YouTubers has gone down really badly this year.