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Google+ Begins Rolling Out Vanity URLs (Mashable)
Google+ is introducing vanity URLs, allowing users to further customize their profile pages, the company announced Monday. The vanity URLs are short, easy-to-remember Web addresses that link directly to a member’s profile or page on Google+, according to a blog post by employee Saurabh Sharma. TechCrunch Google has already enabled this feature for a number of big brands and celebrities like Toyota, Delta Airlines and Britney Spears, but don’t get too excited yet. It’s not clear when Google plans to roll out custom URLs to all of its users. CNET This is likely welcome news for most Google+ users since memorizing long strings of numbers isn’t exactly easy. For example, CNET’s Google+ URL is https://plus.google.com/105198124856956810263/posts. But wouldn’t https://plus.google.com/+CNET be much more manageable? VentureBeat It’s worth noting that the move comes over three years after Facebook announced custom usernames for its users. So Google is a bit behind the curve. Wired Google product manager Matthew Leske has announced that Google+ will “make concerts more awesome” by adding high-quality audio, or “Studio Mode,” to its video broadcasting system “Google+ Hangouts On Air.” Studio Mode allows concert organizers to flip a switch and have audio optimized for music.
Facebook Adds ‘Expecting a Baby’ Timeline Option (PC Magazine)
Facebook rolled out a new “Life Event” for Timeline on Monday, which lets you share when you are going to be a mother or father. With the new life event option, expectant parents can share their baby’s due date and whether it’s a boy or a girl. The Wall Street Journal An avalanche of privately held Facebook shares could begin hitting the market this week — potentially putting further pressure on the company’s stock — as rules expire that have kept some early investors from cashing out. Angel investor Peter Thiel and venture capital firm Accel Partners are among early backers who are sitting on sizable paper gains, even with the company’s stock down 43 percent from its $38 offering price. The Huffington Post Facebook turned over a new leaf Monday, unblocking advertisements promoting a marijuana legalization campaign involving a set of November ballot initiatives across the country. The social media giant conceded to Internet freedom advocates over the past week that it had erred in yanking a pro-legalization group’s ads from its network because of pot leaf images.
Salesforce.com Closes Deal for Buddy Media (CNET)
Salesforce.com has completed its $689 million acquisition of social media marketing platform Buddy Media, the company said. The companies have said that the addition of Buddy Media’s service will vastly improve Radian6, a “social media listening platform.”
Instagram Shakes Up its Suggested Users List (The Daily Dot)
Instagram has made significant changes to the suggested users list that newcomers to the photo-sharing community see when they sign up. However, it appears that some people were cashing in from the thousands of users they were able to acquire by virtue of being on the list.
YouTube Shifts Focus for Suggested Videos From Views to Time Spent on Site (SocialTimes)
Over the past few months you may have noticed a change in the types of videos that are showing up in the suggested videos in YouTube’s sidebar. Flashy thumbnails and videos with mucho views have been replaced with content that has been proven to engage and keep viewers around.
Twitter Has Acquired Another Tiny Startup, Clutch.io (Business Insider)
Twitter has sort-of acquired another startup, Clutch.io, which makes software tools for building iPhone and iPad apps. We say “sort of” because here’s what Clutch.io’s Eric Florenzano and Eric Maguire wrote: “We are incredibly excited to announce that we’ve joined the flock at Twitter! Twitter has acquired the IP of Clutch.io and today [Monday] is our first day with the company.”
Ben & Jerry’s Asks If You ‘Wanna Spoon?’ With Facebook Friends (AllFacebook)
Ben & Jerry’s new “Wanna Spoon?” app scours users’ friends’ profiles, looking for anything they might have in common — favorite bands, favorite foods, or even relatives with the same name — and connects them. Users are then given a coupon to try Ben & Jerry’s Greek Frozen Yogurt.
Social Media Tools Can Boost Productivity (USA Today)
A new category of social media systems is being designed by IBM, Oracle, SAP, Salesforce.com, as well as startups, to boost work place productivity. Given big corporations’ resistance to change, the proving ground for social media work tools has been unfolding mostly among small and midsize businesses, those with five to 5,000 employees.
‘HuffPo Live’ Aims to Reinvent Webcasts With Shift From ‘Presentation to Participation’ (Lost Remote)
The Huffington Post debuted “HuffPo Live,” a 12-hour a day streaming network built around social participation, on Monday. The idea is that social media can reinvent the webcast, just as it has transformed much of the Web.