Category Archives: Digital media

You can buy anything on the black market – including Twitter handles

The perfect @ identity is a must-have accessory for big companies and brand-conscious celebrities – at any cost

Everything has a price, even the top Twitter handles, and if somebody does not want to sell then they may be forced to relinquish their account.

“We have a marketplace which allows the sale of Twitter handles,” says Philly, a subversive marketer who founded ForumKorner, an online gaming forum. “Unlike some websites, however, we do not allow the sales of stolen accounts that some people phish, or hack, to obtain before reselling them.”

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Source: gadt

Rise of digital politics: why UK parties spend big on Facebook

Online advertising is an effective way to get messages across, but the strategy must be smart

Figures released this week by the Electoral Commission are the simplest way to demonstrate the growing influence of Facebook on British politics. Political parties nationally spent about £1.3m on Facebook during the 2015 general election campaign; two years later the figure soared to £3.2m.

In each election it was the Conservatives that spent the most, with decidedly mixed results. For David Cameron’s successful re-election in 2015, the party spent £1.2m; that rose to £2.1m in 2017, but it was far less help to Theresa May.

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Source: gadt

Facebook whistleblower gives evidence to MPs on Cambridge Analytica row – as it happened

Sandy Parakilas, who has claimed covert harvesting was routine at the social network, told the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee Facebook did not do enough to prevent, identify – or act upon – data breaches

4.55pm GMT

Thank you for following the blog. I’m going to leave you with a summary of the salient points from Sandy Parakilas’s evidence on Facebook to the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport committee:

4.41pm GMT

Labour MP Julie Elliott asks Parakilas if he thinks Facebook understands the enormity of the problem here?

He says they do not, otherwise they would have done something quicker.

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Source: gadt

Facebook apologises for search suggestions of child abuse videos

Searches starting ‘video of’ returned autocomplete suggestions of sexual videos and child abuse content

Facebook has been forced to apologise after it spent hours suggesting bizarre, vulgar and upsetting searches to users on Thursday night.

The social network’s search suggestions, which are supposed to automatically offer the most popular search terms to users, apparently broke around 4am in the UK, and started to suggest unpleasant results for those who typed in “video of”.

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Source: gadt

Fake news is Twitter's flu: Chips with Everything podcast

This month, MIT scientists published a paper that found lies spread six times faster than real news on Twitter. This week, Jordan Erica Webber tries to understand why this happens

Subscribe and review: Acast, Apple, Spotify, Soundcloud, Audioboom, Mixcloud. Join the discussion on Facebook, Twitter & email us as podcasts@theguardian.com

People don’t spread rumours any more, they spread fake news. One of the most widely used phrases throughout the 2016 US presidential election, “fake news” was named Collins dictionary’s word of the year for 2017, and it’s still going strong. This has left some people questioning the validity of every story that pops up on their social media feeds.

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Source: gadt

When death pings: Chips with Everything podcast

Would you download an app that sends you a reminder five times a day that you’re going to die? Some people are doing exactly that. This week, Jordan Erica Webber attempts to figure out why we need this kind of app, and why we’re so dependent on apps in general in our day-to-day lives

Subscribe and review: Apple, Spotify, Soundcloud, Audioboom, Mixcloud & Acast, and join the discussion on Facebook, Twitter & email us as podcast@theguardian.com

It seems as if nowadays we think there is no problem in the world that can’t be fixed with an app. According to Apple, from the launch of the App Store in July 2008 up to June 2017, we’ve downloaded 180bn apps. These range from games to keep your mind active on the morning commute to more niche and bizarre apps.

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Source: gadt

Scientists prove that truth is no match for fiction on Twitter

Researchers find fake news reaches users up to 20 times faster than factual content – and real users are more likely to spread it than bots

“Falsehood flies, and the truth comes limping after it,” wrote Jonathan Swift in 1710. Now a group of scientists say they have found evidence Swift was right – at least when it comes to Twitter.

In the paper, published in the journal Science, three MIT researchers describe an analysis of a vast amount of Twitter data: more than 125,000 stories, tweeted more than 4.5 million times in total, all categorised as being true or false by at least one of six independent fact-checking organisations.

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Source: gadt

Blocked by Trump on Twitter – now crusaders take their case to court

Holly Figueroa O’Reilly has joined others in a lawsuit that accuses the president of violating her first amendment rights. Will she succeed?

When Donald Trump took the nuclear option, it seemed funny at first, said Holly Figueroa O’Reilly.

After the 2016 election, Figueroa O’Reilly, who describes herself as a political moderate and the president as an “idiot”, became a persistent critic of Trump on Twitter, which allows users to target one another with messages.

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Source: gad

Reddit infiltrated by Russian propaganda in run-up to US election

The social news site says it has removed a few hundred accounts linked to Russian misinformation efforts

Reddit has become the latest social network to admit that it was infiltrated by Russian misinformation actors in the run-up to the 2016 US election.

In a post on the social news site, Reddit’s chief executive Steve Huffman said that the company has “found and removed a few hundred accounts” which it suspects are of Russian origin, or which were linking directly to “known propaganda domains”.

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Source: gadt

How a Tory MP's tweeted apology proves Labour is still winning at social media

Ben Bradley’s apology to Jeremy Corbyn was retweeted 55,000 times. Does this mean social media is the future of political recourse?

Congratulations to Ben Bradley, Conservative MP for Mansfield, who, in little over a week, has managed to clock up more retweets – 55,000 – than all of the Tory party’s tweets in 2018 combined.

Unfortunately for Bradley, the tweet in question was part of a legal agreement following a defamatory post sent about Jeremy Corbyn, in which he said that the Labour leader had “sold secrets to communist spies”. A slur related to a right-wing press fabricated story that Corbyn cooperated with a Czech intelligence agent in the 1980s.

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Source: gadt