Tag Archives: Twitter

Daily Scroll: Washington Post mobile strategy; Twitter’s future?

22 Oct

For an internal PR piece, the Washington Post mobile insight is really good. Also check out the inside look at Bloomberg’s video strategy.

Meet the Post’s mobile leadership, A Q&A with Cory Haik and Julia Beizer (Washington Post PR)

We’ve hired a lot of key people to focus on our growing mobile audiences: a group of editors with deep knowledge in important verticals — from world news to social and engagement — producers with killer technical chops, designers with intense focus on producing across screen sizes and device types. To do mobile right, you have to think about the readers, the products and the stories together. With this team we’re attempting to do that from the small screen up.

The recent iOS 8 launch unlocked a lot of cool functionality for publishers. We added a Today Extension widget for our iPhone and iPad apps. The widget shows off the top three Post headlines at any given time and allows readers easy access into the app. We also took advantage of Apple’s new interactive notifications feature, allowing readers to dive right into a breaking news story – or save it to read later.

Readers coming to us from mobile devices are now more than 50% of our total audience—and 52% of our mobile readers are millennials.

Twitter’s Audacious Plan to Infiltrate All Your Apps (WIRED)

If Twitter succeeds with this plan, it won’t matter whether or not you use Twitter the product. You will end up using Twitter the company every time you use your phone—even if you’re not aware of it.

The payoff for Twitter will come if it can get developers to embrace MoPub,, its advertising product, because it gets a cut of any ad revenue. So it gives developers these nice tools to sign people up and improve their apps’ performance—and oh yeah, here is a click-to-install ad plug-in to go along with that, which happens to make us money.

While tweets will remain Twitter’s foundation, this is a real strategy shift that’s in many ways similar to Google’s growth out of search.

“It’s not a departure so much as moving beyond Twitter the product and moving into Twitter the company and the platform,” Twitter CEO Dick Costolo tells WIRED. “It’s about helping define the future of the mobile landscape and building an application developer’s platform for the future.”

Inside Bloomberg Media’s digital video business (Digiday)

“What we are seeing now is a new ubiquity of video, especially on desktop,” Paul Marcum told Digiday. “Users are increasingly accepting video as an integral part of their experience.”

…Bloomberg fetches $75 CPMs for its video ads…

The homepage now prominently features the latest Bloomberg videos and a live stream of Bloomberg TV, while news articles more often include video content, like repurposed television clips.

In addition to making better use of its TV content, Bloomberg Media has a 20-person team making digital originals.

“I don’t think [autoplay] is in the best interest of Bloomberg or the advertisers who are taking out these pre-rolls that are just launching automatically. Leaving the user with a bad impression is not good business.” -eMarketer analyst Paul Verna

In August, Bloomberg measured 64 million video streams across its digital platforms, of which roughly 2.8 million were prompted by autoplay.

Bloomberg has forged a number of key partnerships with publishers like Yahoo, MSN and The Telegraph, which distribute some Bloomberg videos to their own audiences. Marcum couldn’t disclose how much traffic these partners drive or the financial terms of agreements but said they provide “a significant overall lift” to Bloomberg’s video business.

Inside Instagram’s Secret Barter Economy’ Influencers swap photos for helicopter rides and champagne (AdWeek)

How paid social has changed social media management (Digiday)

The Someecards formula for shareable native ads (Digiday)

If you’re trying to get people to like and share your native ads, here’s a tip: Make them funny, and maybe add a touch of honesty.


Yahoo Finally Reveals How Much Money Tumblr Can Bring In Ads; Predicts $100 million (AdWeek)

Do Mothers Need Some Time Away from Social Media? (eMarketer)

Half of US mother social media users surveyed—those ages 18 to 64 with at least one child under 18 in the household—said they felt pressure to create an image that their lives were perfect on social networks. This was especially true among younger mothers—whose peers are more likely to access social sites.

The California Sunday Magazine sets out to win the West (CJR)

The Daily Scroll is a roundup of my favorite media reads Monday through Thursday. All excerpts are copied-and-pasted, except for the intro.


American Airlines helps Erica Domesek find love

30 Mar

I’m no stranger to American Airlines’ delightfully interactive Twitter account. Here are some Home Alone-related tweets from around Christmas.

Good times. (Bore yourself with the full thread from the night.)

But that pales in comparison to the conversation the airline had with a passenger, Erica Domesek, who apparently fell in love with a man named Clauco in seat first-class seat 2B. Here’s a sample of that conversation.

See the full thread on Storify (worth the click) and find out how she apparently tracked down Clauco.

Malaysia Airlines crash is reminding people of TV show LOST

10 Mar

If you haven’t seen the popular ABC show, the pilot episode of LOST involves a plane crashing on a remote island. Chaos ensues for six seasons, the first five of which are worth watching.

After reports that the downed Malaysia Airlines jet may have disintegrated — authorities can’t find any trace of the plane — people tweeted about how the circumstances surrounding the crash remind them of the aforementioned television show.

Yes, it’s inappropriate…

Some people maintained perspective.

Vancouver Canucks have a great social media manager

16 Jan

Just going to leave this here without comment. Except to say, well done.

What you’re doing when you share a photo without credit

8 Jan

First let’s establish acceptable ways of sharing photos on social media, which should be about as necessary as reminding people what to do at a stop sign. Alas.

When you share a photo, you must do one of two things, and when possible, both.

1. Write something along the lines of “Credit: Photographer’s name/Organization”

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2. Link back to the original source.

(One notable exception: If the photo is watermarked or contains a logo clearly identifying the original source. But even then, it can’t hurt to go the extra mile.)

If you’re tweeting a photo, you may have to choose between the two due to character limits. At the very least, drop “photo by @handle” in there. If you don’t know who took a photo, either find out who did or don’t share it.

Why is that important?

1. You’re stealing/plagiarizing

You may not really know what plagiarizing means, but you have heard of stealing, and they’re the same thing. You’re a thief. Someone else worked hard (or maybe they didn’t – irrelevant) to get that photo, and they deserve credit. It’s no different than stealing someone’s painting and passing it off as your own.

2. You’re disrespecting the person who took it

It doesn’t matter if they’re not a “professional photographer” or “took it with their phone.” They still took it! If you’re no willing to credit that person, don’t share the photo.

3. You’re not “being funny”

OMG lol so you were just trying to start a meme? Or you have a really good caption? TOUGH! Credit or don’t post!

4. You have no integrity

If you read these reasons and still think it’s acceptable to pass someone else’s work off as your own, you’re a bad human being.

Finally, here’s my favorite way to politely call people out about it, even if they don’t get the hint.


‘It would be good publicity for your blog’

19 Nov

I don’t think this is the right way to convince someone to let you use their photos.

Twitter Custom Timeline: useful with room to improve

12 Nov

It’s like a Twitter-only Storify for Twitter.

The microblogging service announced “custom timelines” Tuesday, allowing you to create a custom feed of handpicked tweets that are both embeddable and shareable. There are some flaws, but overall it’s a great step toward a useful, quick-and-dirty tool to gather a custom list of tweets.

Why would you use this? Some ideas.

  • Gathering reaction to a specific subject to embed in a post.
  • Compiling a list of tweets you want to share internally for sourcing. (Be aware that the custom timeline will be public and theoretically could be found by competitors.)
  • Gathering “top” (top being loosely defined) tweets from one user over a long period of time, for record-keeping and/or embedding.

Things To Know

Do it in TweetDeck.

Click the + sign on the left to add a new column, then select “Custom timeline” on the bottom right.

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Click the crosshair arrows (bottom right of this screenshot — this is a new TweetDeck function) and drag the tweet(s) into the custom timeline column.

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When you drag a new tweet to your custom timeline, it’s added to the very top. Once it’s in there, I don’t see a way you can reorder the tweets.

So chronology doesn’t matter, and if you get something out of order, you have to delete all the tweets before it and re-add them in the order you want. (I would happily stand corrected if I’m overlooking a solution here.)

You can spot the difference in these two screenshots, where Nina’s and Daniel’s tweets are flipped.

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Not in chronological order.

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In chronological order.


It works just like any other TweetDeck column.

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When ready, there are three ways to share.

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1. View on Twitter

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2. Tweet about it

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3. Embed Widget

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If you have more than one custom timeline, they’ll all appear in your dropdown menu:

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If you delete your custom timeline column from TweetDeck, it will cease to exist and break your widget anywhere it exists. (Hopefully this gets fixed.)

Now, if you have some coding skills and know how to utilize the API properly, you can presumably do a lot more with the tool than what’s listed  above. Here’s the blurb on that from Twitter’s blog:

About the API

There’s something more to what we’re announcing today: the custom timelines API beta. This new API will open up interesting opportunities, such as programming your custom timelines based on the logic that you choose, or building tools that help people create their own custom timelines, as TweetDeck does. As noted above, POLITICO is using the custom timelines API to add Tweets to its Tweet Hub.

You can read more about custom timelines for developers and the API beta here. To begin, the API will be available to a small group of selected partners. We want to hear from you. If you have a great idea and you’re interested in testing out the API, please let us know by filling out this form.

We’re excited to see what you’ll do with custom timelines, and are just getting started.

Overall, I’m a fan, but the two biggest immediate improvements I would like to see made are:

  • Ability to reorder tweets once they’re in the custom timeline.
  • Not have to keep the column indefinitely in TweetDeck. I could continue stuffing the custom timelines in my far right columns, but I would much rather keep them off TweetDeck once I create them without having to worry about all the data disappearing, like it did when I deleted the timeline from the example above.
  • Ability to make custom timelines private, which is something Storify does, so it can be shared internally.

Have you tried a custom timeline yet? Let me know what you think.

Why people ‘favorite’ tweets

2 Sep

That little orange star probably doesn’t mean what you think it means.

When someone favorites a tweet, they may actually “like” what you write. Or maybe they meant something else.

Follow me on Twitter.

Here are four reasons people favorite tweets.


Liking: If someone says something funny, or kind, or just plain warm and fuzzy, you can favorite the tweet. This was probably Twitter’s original intention for the tool, and the closest connection to Facebook’s actual “like” function.

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I, too, am an Orioles fan.


Hating: Hate-favoriting is a thing. It’s basically a subtle way to tell someone to screw off. A real needler when you don’t like what someone posted, or the way they posted it.

photo 3

Good try.


Bookmarking: There are so many links flying around Twitter, and so many enticing teases accompanying them, you never have time to read them all right away. Favoriting tweets allows for later access under your profile. (Access by going to “Me” then “Favorites” on your app or via Twitter Web.)

I have a bunch of long-ago favorited tweets I still intend to read.

photo 1

Thanks, Taylor; sounds interesting.


Acknowledging: This is similar to “liking” or “hating,” though it’s more neutral. Sometimes you just want to let someone know, “Yeah, I saw your tweet.”

This is a good way to end an exchange without the guilt of ignoring someone or the chore of coming up with some artificial “Haha OMG totally!” response. Although if that would really be your response to any tweet, please do the rest of us a favor and delete your account.

photo 4

I see your point, Dan.

Did I miss one? Share it in the comments.

Why (basically) unlimited Twitter lists are amazing

9 Jul

Using Twitter without lists is like eating eggs without ketchup. (I love ketchup on my eggs. If you don’t love ketchup on your eggs, I trust you to create your own metaphor.)

Lists are one of the most powerful features of Twitter, and if you’re in journalism, PR or just have a lot of different interests, but don’t use lists, you’re cheating yourself.

Follow me on Twitter and like Social Meditation on Facebook.


Until May 30, though, you could only create 20 lists per account, and they could only have up to 500 users per list. Five hundred users per list is usually plenty, but the 20-list limit was restrictive.

But now Twitter allows 1,000 lists per account, with up to 5,000 users on each list. (Not to mention you can still follow as many lists as you want created by other users. Which is great and all, but they still aren’t your lists, so you can’t customize them – you can only subscribe.)

That’s why I say we can now create “basically” unlimited Twitter lists, because I don’t see many users needing more than 1,000 lists, or more than 5,000 users on any particular list. (If you follow or list 1,000-plus people in a particular feed, it becomes nearly impossible to keep up with the information coming in during peak hours, let alone 5,000.)

I could write for a couple hours on the benefits of lists and best practices for utilizing them, but in the interest of time, I’ll stick to the basics and branch out future posts as necessary.


Organization: Lists are organizational tools for different beats or interests. Instead of sifting through your home feed or a Twitter search for relevant information, go directly to a designated feed. See the examples under “filter” (next point) to get a better idea what I’m talking about.

Filter: The more people you follow, the more clogged your home feed becomes. Be selective about who you follow so you can actually digest tweets and click a few links when reading your feed. There are probably a lot of Twitter users sharing information that interests you, but it doesn’t interest you all the time. Only want to hear about football on Sundays? Create or subscribe to an NFL list. Only interested in politics every two years? Create an elections list. You’ll have a dedicated feed to your particular interest and reading your feeds won’t feel like running on a treadmill at 15 mph.

Resource: Your followers may appreciate the fact that you created a list of sources for a particular beat or interest. Let’s say you put all the happy hour bars in your town on a list. Now everyone else in your town can subscribe to that list and keep up on whatever information those bars are tweeting. Or what if you cover real estate in Marin County, Calif.? Everyone who’s interested in Marin real estate can subscribe to your list and get the same useful info.


Go to any user profile, click the dropdown arrow and select “Add or remove from lists…” then…

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…check any lists to which you want to add the user, or create a new one.

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Public lists can be viewed by and subscribed to by any other Twitter users, and anyone you list will get a notification. Private lists, however, are only visible to you when signed in to your account. No one else can view your private lists at any time, or even know if they’re on one. Unless you have a s— list (get it?) or want to secretly track (read: stalk) some people, I would make your lists public and serve the your fellow Twitter users who may want to subscribe.

(By the way, you can’t list anyone who has a protected account unless they allow you to follow them.)


Go to your profile and on the left side you’ll see the “Lists” option. (See first screenshot.) If you’re on the Twitter app, go to the “Me” tab and scroll down until you see “lists.” There they are!

What other benefits do lists give you? Do you have any tips I didn’t share?

Greenwald not Greenwild: Another Twitter misinformation blunder

12 Jun

A fake Twitter account and some quick-reacting tweeters spread the false news of NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden’s death Wednesday morning.

Since Guardian reporter Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald on Twitter) has been leading the groundbreaking coverage, someone created a @ggreenwild (notice the “i”, and in the bio below, the lack of a second “n” in “Glenn”) account to share a link claiming Snowden was killed, along with 11 others, by a drone at a Hong Kong hotel.

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This is not a real article:

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Usually looked to as a go-to breaking news source, even former Reuters social media manager (and soon-to-be Circa editor-in-chief) Anthony De Rosa retweeted the bad information.

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De Rosa later deleted his tweet and was transparent about it.

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I think this is exactly the way he should have handled it, and is an interesting pivot from the firmer stance he has held in the past, which is that you never delete a tweet unless someone’s life is in danger. (He said as much in a Reddit AMA.) I don’t think anyone’s life was in danger here, but despite De Rosa going against what he said in the past, I still think he handled fixing the mistake the best way.

A quick look at the fake account makes it pretty obvious it wasn’t Greenwald.

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Especially when compared to Greenwald’s real account, which is verified.

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Ironically, the real Glenn Greenwald gave his followers a heads up Tuesday night about a fake Edward Snowden account.

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Here is the bio for that fake account.

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What are some clues – even ones we have heard ad nauseum – that can help us avoid this in the future?

  • See if someone is verified (that’s the checkmark in the turquoise circle). If they aren’t verified, it doesn’t mean it’s a bad account, but the entire reason Twitter verifies accounts is for cases like these, where someone is being impersonated.
  • Check how many followers they have. If it’s a prominent reporter/figure like Glenn Greenwald and they only have triple-digit followers, it’s probably not that prominent person.
  • Check how many tweets they have sent. Again, if it’s someone important, especially a reporter, and they haven’t even tweeted 100 times, let alone thousands, that’s another red flag.

Do you have any social media verification tips?

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