• Social's Role in Holiday Shopping Small, But Growing
    It's October and Christmas is right around the corner, according to marketers at least. And while e-commerce is growing by leaps and bounds, new surveys show that social media still plays a relatively small role in holiday shopping -- although this role is growing at a slow, steady rate.
  • Teens Flocking to Instagram, Dropping Facebook?
    While news about social media trends should usually be taken with a grain of salt, there may just be something to all the reports that teenagers are abandoning Facebook in favor of Instagram (also owned by Facebook). The latest survey data comes from investment bank Piper Jaffray, which polled U.S. teens about their social media usage in September, and compared the results with a previous survey in March.
  • Recruiting Gets Social
    Last month's promising employment numbers hold out the possibility that the U.S. economy is moving and hiring is at long last -- hopefully, maybe, God willing, don't jinx it now -- picking up. And if this happy scenario comes to pass we're probably going to see a whole array of new online recruiting strategies which will (following the timeless advice to "fish where the fish are") rely more and more on social media.
  • Social Media Discourages Girls from Playing Sports
    Body image issues associated with social media discourage adolescent girls from engaging in physical activity including organized sports, according to a new study by researchers at the University of Flinders in Australia. The unrealistic images of women presented on social media serve to create an unattainable ideal, prompting girls to withdraw from physical activity because they feel embarrassed about their bodies, the study found.
  • People Use Social Media to Feel Better -- By Finding Someone Worse Off
    There's been a lot of talk about social media's negative psychological effects (including in this blog) but it can also help make people feel better about themselves, according to a new study by researchers at Ohio State University. They just have to find someone else who's even worse off than they are.
  • IFC Scores with GIFs in Promoted Tweets
    With a stringent 140-character limit on text, it's no surprise Twitter has been rolling out multimedia features to boost engagement. After introducing photo sharing back in 2011, Twitter delved further into sight, sound and motion with the acquisition of Vine in 2012, then began allowing users to share six-second video clips on Twitter itself at the beginning of 2013. Recently the microblogging platform took another step to simplifying video sharing, with its announcement at the end of June that it is supporting animated GIFs.
  • Online Bullying Falls - Maybe
    Online bullying has become a favorite topic for handwringing among adults, but this week brought some tentative good news, as it seems all the efforts to raise awareness of bullying may actually be paying off. Maybe. Depending which survey results you choose to believe.
  • MyCoop, a Social Network for Building Tenants
    Every week seems to bring a new social network -- or two, or three, or twenty. And while everyone is all excited about Ello, a social network that promises to be the anti-Facebook by banning ads and instead charging people for special features and functions, there are some other interesting new social networks on the radar. One newcomer worth considering is MyCoop (pronounced "koop" like "chicken coop," not "did you get the vegan gluten-free granola at the co-op"), a social network for tenants of apartment buildings and condo owners.
  • Bosses Can Make Employees Post Disclaimers on Social Media
    Employers can require workers to post disclaimers on social media stating that their views are their own and not their employers', if they have also identified themselves as working for a specific company, according to a new memorandum from the National Labor Relation Board's Division of Advice. Employees who don't disclose where they work can't be required to post such a disclaimer.
  • Instagram Co-Founder Joins Walmart Board
    OMG, get ready for the Wal-Selfie. Instagram co-founder and CEO Kevin Systrom, 30, is joining the board of directors for Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., the retail leviathan announced Monday, reflecting the company's keen interest in ramping up its efforts in e-commerce and social media engagement, with a focus on mobile.
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