Twitter’s Vine Vs Facebook’s Instagram: The Rivals Take The Brawl To Another Level

In an entirely surprising turn of events, Thursday saw microblogging social network Twitter launching its own video app, Vine. Users can capture short videos of up to 6 seconds’ duration and run it on loop using this app. As of now, this app is available only for iOS users – so iPhone, iPad and iPod touch users can download and use this app currently.

In keeping with Twitter’s theme of brevity, this app is also aimed at inspiring creativity among its users. According to a blog post by Twitter, Vine’s posts are about abbreviation, shortening something longer.

However, moments after Twitter announced this new app, privacy concerns began to get raised. Some users reported that they were able to view other users’ private contact information when they logged into the app, including e-mail addresses and phone numbers. This issue led Twitter to disable Facebook sharing shortly after the app’s launch.

Twitter later stated that the issue was caused due to a bug which caused accounts to get cross-wired. However, the company denied reports that users were able to post content from others’ social accounts due to this bug.

Twitter recently acquired Vine, possibly to compete with Google’s giant video-sharing social network, YouTube. But the real question is if it will find as many takers and spell success for Twitter.… Read the rest

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Privacy Advocacy Groups Urge Facebook Withdraw Its Latest Policy

Has the privacy on Facebook gone for toss? The recent  Facebook policy changes which give access to the company to share users data with recently acquired photo-application instagram  has not  gone well with users. The policy also eliminates the user voting system and has restricted email within the social network.

Two privacy advocacy groups have urged the Facebook to withdraw the policy which saw the light on Wednesday

“Facebook’s proposed changes implicate the user privacy and terms of a recent settlement with the Federal Trade Commission,” the groups said in a letter to Facebook Chief Executive Mark Zucerberg that was published on their websites on Monday.

By sharing information with Instagram, the letter said, Facebook could combine user profiles, ending its practice of keeping user information on the two services separate.

Facebook has still not commented  about it. This April Facebook came to terms with privacy charges with the U.S. Federal Trade commission that it had deceived consumers and forced them to share more personal information than they intended. The settlement clearly declared that Facebook is required to get user’s approval  before doing any privacy changes.

Both Google and Facebook has faced several inquiries regarding  the privacy regulation as consumers hand over mounting amounts of information about their personal lives to Web services.

The proposed changes by Facebook has received more than 7000  comments in just seven days.

The current terms of service automatically trigger a vote by users to approve the changes.  But the vote only works if 30 percent users give their approval.

Facebook also said last week that it wanted to eliminate a setting for users to control who can contact them on the social network’s email system. The company said it planned to replace the “Who can send you Facebook messages” setting with new filters for managing incoming messages.

“This may increase the threat of spam mails “ the privacy groups warned on Monday.

The change would let  Facebook to build unified profiles of its users that include people’s personal data from its social network and from Instagram,  which is similar to recent move by Google Inc.

In January, Google said it would combine users’ personal information from its various Web services – such as search, email and the Google+ social network – to provide a more customized experience. This raised privacy concerns.
“As our company grows, we acquire businesses that become a legal part of our organization,” Facebook spokesman AndrewBSE 0.00 % Noyes said in an emailed statement on Monday.

“Those companies sometimes operate as affiliates. We wanted to clarify that we will share information with our affiliates and vice versa, both to help improve our services and theirs, and to take advantage of storage efficiencies,” Noyes said.

 … Read the rest

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