Twitter’s maturation came and went, and it’s hard to find people still angry about it; resignation, or begrudging understanding, are more common emotions. But currently, Tumblr developers are going through a similar experience. The company, from their perspective, is piggybacking on their work and then shutting them out. Last month, one user by the name of Unwrapping Tumblr noted that a design change to the avatar menu on Tumblr’s dashboard bore more than a casual resemblance to another third-party developer’s tool called Tumby: “You know, not to raise any concerns, but this looks an awful lot like what Tumby’s Chrome extension does.” To which another popular Tumblr user sarcastically replied, “Tumblr lifting features from a ‘browser hack’? No. Say it ain’t so! I don’t believe it!”
Tumby founder Robert Buckley notes that despite attempts, no substantive relationship has evolved between the two companies. “We never needed any technical help to build our stuff, so no harm there. On the other hand, Tumblr’s business side has been uninterested with what we’re doing. That’s surprising and disappointing,” he said. “Worse, they’ve either ignored or rebuffed our every attempt to reach out and establish a dialogue intended to explore and form the right kind of mutually beneficial relationship. We’ve acquired lots of valuable Tumblr domain expertise and insight that we want to and we’d be delighted to share — no takers at Tumblr. That indifference means missed opportunity that harms us and harms them.”
Social networks should be more accepting of third-party plugins.
Twitter embeds have been around for a couple of years.The social network keeps improving them, and every major blogging platform now supports them natively … except for Tumblr. Facebook embeds are here. Instagram and vine each have embeds which are designed to protect creator rights while plugging into the sharing nature of the internet. But they remain cumbersome to use at best on Tumblr because the “Video” embed is clearly not an “anything else” embed.
On WordPress, if I want to embed a tweet, I just put it on its own line, like this.
Tumblr doesn’t do this. And it’s starting to look comicly inept that they’re ignoring this increasingly useful part of how social media works.
We posted something asking tumblr to consider adding these embeds almost two full years ago. Why is this still even an issue? Whose arm do we have to twist to convince them that this is a net positive?
Sorry for the rant. It’s just frustrating that, on this platform, things that would be so easy to add can get ignored for years. — Ernie @ SFB
We want to make money in the long term, but we don’t have any short-term pressure.
Instagram Director of Business Operations Emily White • Discussing the company’s long-term plan for financial success—the Facebook-owned company plans to start selling ads in the next year. Some problems with this: The potential for backlash from the audience is high, and marketers are already on the network in a strong way. That said, White is a useful resource for the company—her job is essentially designed to help the company start making money.
Rebelmouse wants to take advertisers’ social content and turn that into an ad unit for publishers.
An Internet truism: banner ads are ugly and they don’t work. But brands are now tapping into that catch-all phrase called content marketing, and Rebelmouse thinks it can serve as the officiant between marrying advertising content and publishers’ monetization woes.
Led by former Huffington Post CTO Paul Berry, the one-year-old social tool aims to turn a brand’s social feeds into an ad unit that benefits brands and publishers. Berry’s argument: Brands now create better content on social platforms than they do for display ads, and publishers can take advantage by turning a brand’s social content into an ad unit. Sounds lovely, but publishers say while they like using Rebelmouse for specific events, the jury’s still out in regards to making money.
Click through to read the rest.
Rebelmouse is one of my favorite tools these days and definitely worth keeping an eye on if you do anything remotely social.
seldo says: Your point about two-factor auth at Twitter is fair, but these large brands can already be using third-party tools like Hootsuite to give individuals access to major accounts in a much more controllable way, and using insanely long, private master passwords for the accounts themselves.
» SFB says: This is a fair point regarding my argument last night. (Though if you read Twitter’s recommendations, they seem skeptical of this as well. “Even if you use a third-party platform to avoid sharing the actual Twitter account password, each of these people is a possible avenue for phishing or other compromise,” they write.) It’s also a good work-around to Twitter’s lack of two-step, though, because you can log in via OAuth and Facebook Connect, allowing you to tie into Google and Facebook’s two-step logins. Not everyone is psyched to use such tools like HootSuite, but it’s certainly a reasonably good choice for large organizations. The fact of the matter is, we’re giving the same level of security to everyone that joins Twitter, and when you’re Twitter’s size, it doesn’t make sense. If they can’t pull it off for everyone all at once, two-step for verified accounts would be a great start. — Ernie @ SFB
Last summer, New York-based hybrid investor/incubator/holding company thing Betaworks acquired social news site Digg and relaunched it soon after, hoping to bring back some of its mojo in the process. Nine months later, Betaworks has acquired news-oriented company, this time bringing Marco Armentâ..
That’s a pretty big deal. Combined with Digg and Bit.ly, it sort of makes them a force on the content-sharing front. According to Marco Arment (a Tumblr co-founder who originally built Instapaper as a weekend side project), “I will continue advising the project indefinitely, while Betaworks will take over its operations, expand its staff, and develop it further.”
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