It seems that today too many media institutions chase superficial metrics of online virality at the expense of investing in rigorous reporting and analysis of the most important stories of our time. When few people are investing in media institutions with such bold aims as ‘enlightenment to the problems of the nation,’ I believe we must.Just-announced New Republic majority owner Chris Hughes • Discussing his plans for the small-but-influential magazine, which are somewhat ironic because he’s the co-founder of Facebook. Huge props to him, though. We need someone fighting for serious, well-considered insight even as the world is moving closer and closer to sharing as little as possible.
» Word is that a major restructuring is happening: New CEO Scott Thompson (no relation) reportedly plans to cut back heavily at the company, which analysts see as a key example of tech company excess, in an attempt to focus on the things the company does well. While the company has had some recent success (their Open Graph collaboration with Facebook has been a boon, for example), the company has not undeservedly built a reputation of acquiring other companies (for example, Delicious) and letting them languish under the corporate structure. It used to be mentioned in the same breath as Google, but now it’s more likely to be mentioned in the same breath as AOL. Would cuts bring Yahoo back to life?
seldo says: This massively understate’s Twitter’s real influence, since its consumption is primarily mobile (and Facebook’s is 50% mobile, so it’s actually even bigger).
» SFB says: It doesn’t count third-party app usage, either. So I agree with you on that. I’ll link to this conversation on the post. As far as desktop goes, I think that it’s a more accurate gauge of the other services than Twitter. Which is actually pretty bad for G+, as most people use that through the Web site (though it does have a mobile presence) and third-party apps are still pretty much nonexistent. — Ernie @ SFB
Apps that collect or transmit a user’s contact data without their prior permission are in violation of our guidelines. We’re working to make this even better for our customers, and as we have done with location services, any app wishing to access contact data will require explicit user approval in a future software release.Apple spokesman Tom Neumayr • In a statement about Apple’s privacy policies, as pertaining to the iPhone. This statement came hot on the heels of the revelation that two Democratic congressman (G.K. Butterfield and Henry A. Waxman) had sent a letter to Apple CEO Tim Cook, requesting information about privacy permissions. The inciting incident here was the iPhone app Path, which was revealed to be uploading users’ address books to their company servers without asking permission, or offering any notification. Path tried to curb the controversy by apologizing and offering an opt-out, but the damage to their credibility (and, by association, Apple’s) had already hit. And amidst word that a number of widely-used apps — most notably Twitter — did the same thing, Apple has affirmed that what Path did was a violation of their privacy practices, and has released an update for iOS that allows users to delete the database by switching off location services. source (via • follow)