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Friends Tweet Before Dying in Maryland Train Derailment (AP)
They were seemingly ordinary tweets from two friends hanging out on a railroad bridge in their hometown, enjoying one last summer night together before heading back to college. Minutes after the messages were shared on Twitter, a Baltimore-bound CSX freight train loaded with coal barreled down the tracks and derailed, killing Elizabeth Conway Nass and Rose Mayr, both 19, of Ellicott City, and toppling railcars and coal onto the streets below of this historic Maryland community. The Washington Post “Drinking on top of the Ellicott City sign,” read one tweet. “Looking down on old ec,” read another. Accompanying photos showed their view from the bridge and their bare feet, one with painted blue toenails, dangling over the edge. “Levitating,” read the tweet. CBS News So far, investigators have determined the emergency brakes were applied automatically — not by the three-man crew — on Monday around midnight, but they don’t know why the train jumped the tracks. It could be weeks before they know anything definitive. The women were sitting on the edge of the bridge with their backs to the tracks as the train passed a few feet behind them, Howard County police said, and their bodies were found buried under coal dumped from the train cars. The Baltimore Sun Ellicott City’s historic center braced for a difficult, days-long cleanup of coal, overturned train cars and smashed vehicles. Investigators said the town’s uneven topography along the Patapsco River in Howard County added obstacles to an already complex recovery. CNN Nass was supposed to go back to college at James Madison in Virginia on Tuesday, and Mayr was a nursing student at the University of Delaware who was about to start her junior year.
Select Pages Now Have Facebook’s Save Feature (AllFacebook)
Facebook has been testing out a save feature for select users on mobile and desktop, but tipster Ben Lang recently informed AllFacebook that now some pages can save posts for later, too. Readers: Have you been able to save posts yet? TechCrunch Facebook announced on its developer blog Tuesday that it will allow users to mention their friends in messages in Open Graph apps. While users can already “action tag” their friends using other apps (Facebook uses foursquare as its example), the update will allow users to “mention tag” friends as well. Reuters India pressed social media websites, including Facebook, on Tuesday to remove “inflammatory” content it said helped spread rumors that caused an exodus of migrants from some Indian cities last week. India telecommunications secretary R Chandrashekhar told CNN-IBN television that Google and Facebook had largely complied with the government’s requests while the response from Twitter had been “extremely poor,” though he added that this “may be in part because they don’t have an office in India.”
Social Media Privacy for College Athletes? California Senate Says Yes (Mashable)
California’s state Senate on Tuesday unanimously approved legislation to bar colleges and universities from requiring students to provide administrators with access to their social media usernames and passwords. Gov. Jerry Brown must sign or veto the bill by Sept. 30.
FCC: All Web TV Must Have Captions By the End of September (SocialTimes)
Deaf and hard-of-hearing viewers have been pushing for mandatory captions for Web video for years now and, while we’ve seen steps in the direction of making online video more accessible, nothing has been passed making captions obligatory, until now. The FCC has ruled that beginning Sept. 30 television networks and online video sites will need to provide closed captions for online TV content.
Healthy Labs Launches Social Network for People With Chronic Conditions (VentureBeat)
Healthy Labs is one of several promising startups that’s building an online community for people with chronic health conditions. For Healthy Labs and other companies in the space, they have a significant opportunity to use technology to make a difference in the lives of millions of people.
Are Unlimited Data Plans Dead? T-Mobile USA Says No (The New York Times/Bits Blog)
Just when cellphone customers were beginning to think “all you can eat” data plans were a relic of the past, T-Mobile USA said that next month it will begin offering a plan that does not put any limits on the use of data for things like browsing the Web, watching videos or streaming music. The company said that the new plan will be “truly unlimited,” meaning there will be no curbs on data transfer speeds, or surprise fees added to a bill.
Gannett Purchases Social Media Marketing Company BLiNQ Media (GigaOM)
As had been expected, media giant Gannett today announced that it has purchased social marketing company BLiNQ Media. Gannett did not disclose the terms of the deal, but news outlets have reported that the price could have been between $40 million and $92 million.
Verified Journalists on Twitter Get Pimped Out Muck Rack Profile Pages (AllTwitter)
Muck Rack is offering “verified” journalists a pimped out profile page that we think you’re going to love. It is a platform that gathers, filters and analyses tweets from journalists around the world.
Google, Boingo Expand Free Wi-Fi Hotspot Service to More Areas (The Verge)
Google and Boingo are expanding their free Wi-Fi hotspot service promotion to eight new locations outside of the metro New York area. Google and Boingo first offered free Wi-Fi service in a handful of subway stations in Manhattan and 200 hotzones earlier this summer, but now, the free service is now available in eight malls in Los Angeles and San Francisco, Calif.; Seattle; and Tampa, Fla.