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Smartphones and war reporting – a crowdsourced list of research

Last week I was contacted by Emanuele Ballacci a Multimedia Journalism Degree student in Rome. He’d come to a talk I’d given earlier in the year in Perugia discussing the use of mobile phones and social media in reporting. As part of his graduation thesis about war journalism and new technologies he wanted to discuss ‘the usefulness of smartphones and new generation mobile phones on reporting from war contexts’, and wondered if I could suggest any books or reading on the subject. To date, he’d only found books that discuss the subjects separately.

This didn’t surprise me in some ways as using smart mobile devices in journalism is still fairly new and war zones aren’t often known for their 3G signals. You also know you’re onto something possibly interesting when a Google search comes back with results for smartphone wars (think iPhones v Androids). No immediate books came to mind. So I replied that I’d see what I could find out, as I was also interested in the answer.

Thankfully I do know people who at least may know the answer to such things. So I put a shout-out on Twitter and cc’d in the likes of Paul Bradshaw, Kevin Anderson and Ilicco Elia, who then asked those they thought might know and so on. The net widened and others such as Daniel Bennett chipped in. In combination we came up with the following:

Everyone who responded wanted to know more.

I suggested to Emanuele that he could end up being the expert in this area, judging by our findings, and said I’d be writing up what little we’d found, and happy to include anything further that he’s aware of. He got back to me with the following wider reading list as follows:

Other food for thought that I found during my research:
Online newsgathering, Quinn & Lamble
Always On, Chen
Multimedia Journalism: A practical guide, Bull
In the Hot Zone, Sites
– An ironic but interesting suggestion: http://goo.gl/ZdFf9

If anyone knows of any other research, blog posts or books in this area please do suggest them in the comments below.

LinkedIn finally makes Company Pages a bit more useful

The business social network LinkedIn have just announced a series of changes to the Company Pages section of their service. For those of you thinking you’ve not really been aware of this part of the platform it’s with good reason.

The offering has been limited to collating employee statistics, posting job opportunities and giving a static profile of your company. Useful for some due diligence and may be finding a job, but that’s about it. Even the most dynamic of companies have sounded dull when looking at their LinkedIn company profile, which is quite an achievement.

When I’m asked how companies should or could use LinkedIn the Company Pages have not really been high on the agenda – where as Groups, networking and advertising can be very valuable if used thoughtfully and with clear objectives.

This might now change as LinkedIn have added a ‘Status Update’ function to Company Pages. It’s not immediately apparent if this has launched across all pages, so I expect it will be slowly rolling out. Social Media Today have put a good summary together:

  • Followers of your Company will see the Status Updates on their homepage (when they login to LinkedIn) or by going to your Company’s “Overview” tab. Each Follower’s network will also have an opportunity to see the posts- as long as the follower comments, likes, or shares.
  • In order to post a Company Status Update, you must be an Administrator of your Company Page, and your Company Page must be set to “Designated Admins only”.
  • Posts can be up to 500 characters (including spaces).
  • You will be able to see impressions and engagement on each Company Status Update. An impression = views of the status update. Engagement = total interactions (comments, likes, clicks, shares)/total impressions. This data appears approximately 24 hours after an update is published and will continue to update on a daily basis.
  • Businesses that post an excessive amount are subject to review by LinkedIn and could risk having their page deleted.

And here’s the official video to explain the changes, which is worth a look:

Understanding the latest Facebook changes and their implications

These are the slides I put together for a very short presentation at the Chinwag Facebook Marketing conference on the 6 October 2011. It’s aim is to summarise what was discussed at Facebook’s September 2011 F8 conference which introduced the Timeline and Open Graph Apps. It also goes through a few other changes that have recently taken place on Facebook that people may not be aware of.

What to do if your Facebook (or Twitter) account gets phished

This morning I woke up to an email from a friend of mine that had come via Facebook. The message listed me and a whole other group of names.

Facebook phishing message

I duly clicked thinking that I may have been tagged in a photo or similar, because I know the person socially as they run an art group.

On logging into Facebook I discovered my message wasn’t alone and that a similar message had been sent to a number of people a number of times. This immediately made me (and I’d hope most people) suspicious. At the top was a posting saying: ‘Do you remember this photo?’. Due to the context I had to to a double take and really examine the link. It immediately didn’t ring any bells that I’d associate with my friend, the context or Facebook, but unlike similar Twitter scams it did look fairly genuine, just not quite enough. His account had been phished*.

One person had already commented on the page that it looked like our mutual friend’s account had been hacked.

I immediately emailed my friend with the following advice, which also covers Twitter, should a similar thing happen to you.

Hi!
It looks like your Facebook account has been phished and you’ve mistakenly gone to a site with a fake Facebook login page and given them your login details.
It has then put a message on your profile and tagged your friends, sending them a message. On logging in you see your name and ar the top a post that reads ‘do you remember this photo?’. This sends people to a fake site etc.

What to do…
Change your password
Delete the messages
Update your profile with message about the problem :-(
Check to see what other changes may have taken place with your profile, including apps and pages
Check your security/privacy settings.

Twitter users also note
It’s worth visting your Settings/Applications page to check who has access to your account. Most of these will be legitimate and enable Twitter tools such as Tweetdeck, Bitly and Echofon to operate. Check to see if there are any you don’t recognise. If you are at all worried simply ‘revoke access’ to either the ones you can’t remember adding or to all of them. The worse that will happen in doing so is that you’ll be required to give permission next time you try and use one of these tools.
Twitter Settings Application page

*Phishing is a way of attempting to acquire sensitive information such as usernames, passwords and credit card details by masquerading as a trustworthy entity in an electronic communication.”