Monthly Archives: October 2010

Police Restricted To 140 Characters

If you were to log onto twitter on Thursday 14th of October you might be surprised to find that one of the trending topics is #gmp24, you might be wondering just what this means.

In an attempt to show the greater public just how tough it is to be a cop Greater Manchester Police have been Tweeting every 999 call they receive in the space of 24 hours.

So far they have made over 1200 tweets since 5:30AM and had three of their accounts temporarily suspended due to ‘spamming’ the micro-blogging site.

However this has not been without any controversy. Fake accounts were made by pranksters which featured tweets such as;

Call 025 – Reported burglary by man with lettuce on his head.#gmp24

Call 36 Police officer down. Police officer down. Ambulance with box of donuts required stat #gmp24

GMP responded quickly threatening the pranksters to remove the official GMP logo.

Although some of the official tweets were just as humorous;

Call 384 report of man holding baby over bridge – police immediately attended and it was man carrying dog that doesn’t like bridges #gmp24

While the whole thing may seem trivial to some Chief constable Peter Fahy claims the point is to let the general public as well as the politicians see what police have to deal with every day, and possibly re-consider budget cuts that have been proposed in the Government’s upcoming spending review.

Fake Reviews of Your Business on Google Maps

If you were to go to Google Maps today and type in ‘Mt Everest’, you will see a list of not so positive joke reviews of the highest point on Earth. The current reviews complain about the cold weather, lack of Wifi, no Starbucks and “lack of amenities” at the summit.

One man claimed to have climbed Everest on horseback: “Road a horse to the summit had a blast!?”.

Another man said his mate climbed it in trainers, but you should have “some smokes and red bull for the trip down”.

I decided to join in the fun myself by adding my own review:

“I made it to the top in a couple of hours via the cycling route. The holiday rep told me to avoid the sherpas just there to rip you off, so I stuck with the Thamas Cook tour guide instead. My runners kept getting soaked from the snow. I suggest going in Summer if you have to go”.

This is all well and funny, but serves as a very good lesson that anyone can publish content and reviews about your business online. Competitors and disgruntled employees could fake a review about your service to get one over on you.

If you see a fake review on Google Maps of your business you can click ‘Flag as inappropriate’, then give a detailed message as to why. A Google employee should take the fake review off the site for you. This is not a fool proof way to solve the situation, as I have heard about mixed results from people doing this.

Some of the reviews get pulled off from other sites as well, which you will need to contact to get any false content removed. Good luck if your business has been affected by unscrupulous reviewing.

Andrew Marr’s Rant Against ‘inadequate, pimpled and single’ Bloggers

Andrew Marr, who represents BBC1′s flagship Sunday morning show has adorned himself in controversy by an  extremely prejudiced comment against bloggers. In an interview with the Cheltenham Literacy Festival he said:

“A lot of bloggers seem to be socially inadequate, pimpled, single, slightly seedy, bald, cauliflower-nosed young men sitting in their mother’s basements and ranting. They are very angry people”.

“OK – the country is full of very angry people. Many of us are angry people at times. Some of us are angry and drunk”.

‘Andrew Marr’, Twitter Trending Topic

As I write this blog article, Andrew Marr has become a hate figure amongst avid Twitters users, most of whom not Tweeting from their mother’s basements. The internet is a close knit, highly media savvy community, and Andrew Marr will surely not forget how his comments have been taken.

I can understand Andrew Marr using the “inadequate, pimpled and single” cliché to lambaste certain individuals who cause childish arguments on message boards across the internet, but some of the most influential & trusted people use blogs. Stephen Fry is the most respected scholar and TV personality in the British public, and is a well documented ‘Tweeter’. Many actors like Simon Pegg use blogging as a means to connect to fans about their current projects.

Andrew Marr is simply deluded to the own importance of his opinion, and if he conducted a little more research he should see how the most informed, and current knowledge is currently on social media.

New Twitter: Day Two

Twitter is anticipating great things for itself very soon. It has been positioning itself at a worthy social networking competitor to Google by introducing very subtle changes to how it works over the last month or so.

I don’t know about you, but I currently have the very latest version of Twitter at my disposable fulltime. I had a go on it yesterday, but Twitter took it away from me as I was having WAY too much fun with it. You want to read how I first got to grips with the newest version of Twitter.

It all runs very smooth and satisfyingly. When you click on a Tweet in the timeline, a panel slides open with all the latest tweets from the ‘Tweeter’ of the post. The layout is far easier to use and I have learnt where everything is now.

I implore everyone to adopt it with open arms.

My Hands On Experience of New Twitter

New Twitter Preview

Today whilst Tweeting for a client I was given the option to try out ‘new Twitter’. I wrote an article about the features of new Twitter a couple of weeks ago.

I obviously giggled like a schoolgirl on the inside and said yes to the proposal. What I did notice is that the layout has changed quite a lot. The site seems to be 50% wider than before.

The search function has been moved to the top bar, like Facebook. To logout you click a drop down menu at the top right of the page, like Facebook. You can also now embed videos into the feed, like Facebook. The message inbox is also very similar to Facebook. Twitter now promote who you should follow on your Twitter page, not just the Twitter front page before you log in.

Everything is generally easier to navigate and the extra functionality means you don’t have to click off site for images or video. As soon as the UK receives new Twitter fulltime  I will be using it to promote my short films and film blog very much. The UK has not had a full rollout of the service yet, and some won’t like the changes, but will get used to it.

For some reason Twitter won’t let me use the new version a the moment, but I like it. We will be featuring an updated New Twitter review when it becomes nationwide.

Google Goggles – Browse The Web by Taking an iPhone Photo

I was on Twitter earlier today and saw the trending topic ‘google goggles’, and was intrigued. At first  thought they had done something new to their homepage. Again.

But no, it was a new iPhone App that lets you search Google by taking photos of objects and landmarks.

Here is a young Adrian Chiles explaining how to use the Google Goggles iPhone App

So, what we know is that the App is very clever and can be great fun. If you are in a famous city you can find out what buildings are which, but its a long way off before you can photograph the Walton on Thames Aldi to get a search result about it.

I remember having great fun whilst at my mate’s flat using his barcode reading app that brought up a price comparison list to buy products online. I was very amused at the sheer range of obscure products it managed to get results for. Even VHS tapes that went out of production over a decade ago.

This looks like a great App and I may just have to become like all my friends and get an iPhone.

Sponsored Promoted Twitter Accounts

If you are a frequent Twitter user you will already know about Twitter making suggestions on who to follow. But now, just like Youtube and Digg, Twitter are now more aggressively pushing sponsored content.

Twitter now let sponsored accounts appear on the Twitter homepage, as suggestions to follow. This means if you follow a lot of film industry people, Twitter may suggest @empiremagazine.

This will open many marketing opportunities for businesses to advertise to their selected target audience.

Twitter bided their time very well before introducing more commercial elements into the site.  The ominous sponsored trending topics is another way they are promoting paying brands.

With new Twitter around the corner in the UK, who knows what sponsored content they will promote in the future?

Google Vs Apple in Mobile Advertising

Recent research by Bloomberg/Business week suggests that Google and Apple are neck and neck in generating revenue from mobile phone advertising. In the US here are the suggested figures:

  • Apple: 21%
  • Google: 21%
  • JumpTap: 13%
  • Millennial: 11%
  • Yahoo: 9%
  • Microsoft: 7%
  • Nokia: 2%
  • Other: 16%

Apple’s iAd service allows advertisers to reach users through their iPhone and iPad devices, and has popularised the use of the mobile internet. Apple have become very innovative in defining trends in society, and have managed to achieve the feat of drawing the same advertising revenue as Google.

Many analysts state that Apple will most likely overtake Google in revenue generation any  time soon. We will be keeping a close eye on the situation.