The Social Media Olympics
The 2012 Summer Olympics are finally underway, and social media is playing a big part in it. Whether that is a good thing or not can be debated. NBC is being continually criticized on social media for their coverage, most notably about their choice to tape delay events to show in prime time. In the age of social media, anyone on a computer can accidentally find out the results of an event before it has aired on NBC. For example, viewers were disappointed to see tweets about who appeared in the Opening Ceremony, ruining the surprise.
But athletes are also seeing the negative side of social media during the games. Multiple athletes have made headlines and gotten into hot water because of tweets. Two were even taken out of the games: Greek Olympian Voula Papachristou was banned from competing in the Olympics after posting a racial joke on Twitter last week, and Swiss soccer player Michel Morganella was banned after tweeting offensive remarks about South Korea after a loss to the country’s team.
The popularity of social media also makes it easier for viewers to talk to athletes, which can also have negative consequences. British diver Tom Daley received hateful tweets about his dead father after coming in fourth place. Tweets from the user continued and became more hateful, even threatening to drown Daley, and a 17-year-old has been arrested on suspicion of “malicious communication.”
“Cashtags” let you search for money talk on Twitter
Twitter has introduced a new symbol to join the ranks of the @reply and #hashtag: the $cashtag. A cashtag followed by a company’s stock symbol (for example, $FB or $GOOG) will turn into a clickable link to a search stream the same way a hashtag does. In the stream, you will be able to read tweets and conversations about a company’s finances and stocks. The announcement was made via a tweet Monday night.
While users seem welcoming to this new feature, not everyone is happy. The CEO of StockTwits claims that Twitter is ripping off one of his company’s innovations. In a blog post, StockTwits CEO Howard Lindzon claims that his company has been doing this for over four years. Not only that, but he states that as recently as a few months ago, Twitter told him via email that the company wasn’t interested in making its own cashtags.
Is Twitter beginning to cut out Instagram?
The days of finding friends from Twitter to follow on Instagram are over. Twitter has removed its follow graph data from the photo sharing app, although it seems some users who don’t have the latest update of the app may still be able to do so. This follows a similar move made earlier this month, when Twitter stopped partnering with LinkedIn to allow users to sync updates from the two sites. Twitter’s dropping of LinkedIn and Instagram could both be part of a larger plan, but there’s also talk that this could have something to do with Facebook’s acquisition of Instagram earlier this year.