Just got a mass e-mail from Biz Stone explaining why Twitter accounts with autofollow enabled (this was originally an option in user settings) will no longer be grandfathered in. And in fact, there will be no more autofollow accounts.
I’ve always been mixed on this, however, I now feel that it is in the service’s best interest to disallow autofollow’s across the board. Still this can be easily circumvented using other services, such as SocialToo, which accesses the Twitter API to enable auto-follows, and — much worse in my opinion — allow users to automatically send direct messages to new followers). There is even a website — http://www.twitterautofollow.com/ — devoted to listing accounts that had autofollow enabled.
Why does Twitter discourage autofollow?
“Namely, it is unlikely that anyone can actually read tweets from thousands of accounts which makes this activity disingenuous,” the letter reads. At the same time it is a mixed message to encourage the use of Twitter as a legitimate community-building tool, without making it easier for one to follow back followers. In the end, I grew very frustrated with the auto-follow concept, primarily due to the fact that a majority of new followers (on the @LiveEarth account that I administer) appeared to be complete fakes. Especially during the month that the account was featured as a suggested user.
I knew Twitter would disable autofollow soon enough. But the mildly defensive tone of the explanation was unexpected. What are your thoughts on Twitter etiquette?
But don’t let the cat out of the bag before you’ve got a basic index page, 404 or… anything but the de facto Register.com-branded ztomy.com-fueled link farm.
So when the LA Times announced a “new product launch” in an all-staff memo this afternoon (thx, Ed) it was disappointing to see that said product was nothing but a Register.com link farm. Not to mention, what the memo describes is merely a repackaging of the short-lived print edition of Metromix along with some “reverse-published” blog posts. Whatever that means. Perhaps it can only be read when held up to a mirror?
Times editor Russ Stanton had this to write about the so-horribly-named-it-makes-me-quiver ThisIsBrandX.com: “It’s content sharing on an extremely local level and will bring our great work to an audience that does not currently see it.”
I feel for my friends at the LA Times who do amazing work in spite of it all. But the news about newspapers these days just gets me depressed. And with a name like Brand X — which implies knock-off, pirated, counterfeit merchandise — I just hope that the bulk of the content isn’t produced in China.
Last week, we watched Obama address the great state of California, promising “brighter days ahead.” Tonight, in his second national prime time address, the country still needs to get a grip. We’ll watch online via the ever-trusty and crisp-pictured Hulu player:
For instant analysis of a rather unsubstantive speech with many weak and redundant questions, see the caucus.
UPDATE: See below for sample audio / transcription sample — not perfect, but then again, not the easiest call to translate…
A week ago we learned that GrandCentral would become Google Voice with an exciting overhaul and rejuvenated Google-esque UI. And now the opportunity has arrived to upgrade my account.
BUT — here’s the slightly annoying part — my archive doesn’t transfer to the new Google Voice site — I need to access old information and voicemails at GrandCentral voicemails migrated to Google Voice. But hey — Google even gave me a dollar ($1)!!!
Also, I have to re-record my Google Voice greeting and re-integrate other settings. Lame. But I’m psyched to actually have a reason to use GrandCentral Google Voice at last!
Help me test the transcription by leaving a message — the widget above will send you directly to my Google Voicemail.
Here is one [joke] call and subsequent (pretty hilarious) transcript: