Ever the social media masters, the Obama administration uses flickr to publicize a series of pictures from inside the White House, depicting the hours leading up to the president’s announcement that al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden had been killed by U.S. special forces in Abbottabad, Pakistan.
Just when I start to doubt social media’s muscle — (which happens when I garden) — something such as Sunday’s late-night announcement of terror mastermind Osama bin Laden’s death makes me believe again.
I was at work when the speculation started about Obama’s announcement, throwing in my ridiculous two cents, and watched as the news of Osama’s death evolved from 140-character rumors and bronzed soundbites into full-blown confirmed reports — all long before Obama took the lectern.
Today, my Facebook feed, which is usually rife with Sunday night blues, dinner plans and high school reunion pics, is a welcome illustration of democracy: The mostly joyous status updates alternate between pointed-but-restrained praise for Bush’s post-9/11 efforts and nearly arrogant predictions of Obama’s 2012 victory. One or two friends have noted, rightly, that even after Osama’s demise, the United States will still have more enemies, and more than a few are quoting Mark Twain: “I’ve never wished a man dead, but I have read some obituaries with great pleasure.” A quick check of that quote shows me that it’s also all over Twitter today. Oh, maddening crowd.
Also on Twitter, there’s more celebrating and, of course, the news of the day: the quick-and-dirty posts that show who’s getting the facts fastest. I’ll have plenty of news to read when I go into work tonight, so until then I’ll enjoy a lighter perspective.
*Gannett launched a new branding campaign in early March.
Yahoo News looks at some of USA TODAY’s recent efforts to reinvent itself in as a digital destination, which includes a rollout of mobile applications for devices such as the Apple iPad and the new Motorola Xoom, which is powered by Android 3.0 Honeycomb.
From the story:
USA Today’s applications for mobile devices have been downloaded more than 6 million times, including 1.25 million designed for Apple Inc.’s hot-selling iPad. Mobile applications of The New York Times, another national newspaper that’s trying to gain more readers and make more money on the Web, have been downloaded more than 9 million times.
USA TODAY’s Jackie Kucinich looks at how 140 characters can hurt a political campaign in the digital age. A status update gone wrong can go viral — and fast — and the next thing you know, Politico is reporting your indiscretion and resignation.
From the story with the snazzy headline that I wrote:
The rise of social media such as Twitter, Facebook and YouTube have accelerated the rate an off-color remark or e-mail can be posted on a news site and in seconds turn into a national story read by millions of people.
Bill Burton, Democratic strategist and former spokesman for President Obama, puts the new dynamic in stark terms: “There is a lightning quickness to the speed at which candidates can build and accidentally dismantle their own campaigns. If candidates don’t figure out their place in the new digital world of politics, they will be destroyed by it.”
This cool foursquare graphic looks at 2010’s opening-weekend movie check-ins, breaking down the data by title, gender preferences and overlap, and regional interest. Of note: Mississippians dug Gulliver’s Travels and Toy Story 3, while Utahns preferred Edge of Darkness and Tooth Fairy.
In other foursquare news, the location-based social network is now distinguishing between friends and followers. This will allow marketers to determine the users with a large reach. The HubSpot blog has details in their Feb. 28 post that I missed because I was researching strategies for Angry Birds or doing something equally important.
I also missed foursquare’s “Rudest Cities in the World” list posted Feb. 28 on the network’s engineering blog. While it is interesting to know that Manchester, England, has the most … colorful … check-ins in the world, the post more importantly details how the company will mine (explore) the data it collects to make decisions about venues, promotion and demographics. The post is heavy on the tech, but offers some insight into foursquare’s ambitions.
For those more interested in the rude cities themselves, AOL Travel has a roundup.