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On today’s episode, Michael prank calls Mayor of Los Angeles, Tony Vilar. Plus, Facebook’s new “Poke” app and hear Australian DJ’s Mel Greig and Michael Christian’s Kate Middleton prank call in its entirety. Be sure to click the Like / Tweet buttons to help promote The Michael Show!
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Selena Gomez has been banned from Facebook until further notice — but here’s the thing…it’s not the famous Selena Gomez. This Selena Gomez is a girl in New Mexico with the same name.
18-year-old Selena MIRANDA Gomez tells TMZ, she tried to sign in to her Facebook account but was denied, receiving a message instead that her account had been disabled for being “inauthentic.”
According to the error message, the account was disabled for violating Facebook’s terms, which state, “Impersonating anyone or anything is not allowed.”
But clearly, the non-famous Selena isn’t impersonating anyone and now she’s upset that she’s been unfairly banned from her social networking profile, telling TMZ, “I AM NOT AN IMPOSTOR … My name is not hers on my page. In fact, I even put my middle name on my FB to clear up any confusion.”
She says, “I did not have one single famous friend. I did not refer to myself as [the famous Selena], and I did not have any pictures of her on my page!”
Selena says she’s reached out to FB to reactivate her account but so far, no luck.
A rep for FB had no comment.
Two middle-school girls in Texas have been arrested after police say they created a Facebook page in a classmate’s name—and used it to fire off threats to other students.
The girls, ages 12 and 13, face third-degree felony charges for online impersonation, NBC Newsreports. The messages caused “the victim to endure threats from other students” and suffer social rejection, a sheriff’s statement says; the victim’s mother says the incident nearly prompted a “physical altercation.”
“This is similar in every way to identity theft,” the sheriff said. He noted that the victim was friends with the alleged perpetrators and “would like to forgive and forget.” Meanwhile, the ACLU has voiced concerns about the case, citing “hysteria” about social media from “people who don’t understand it.” “Increasingly, this is the case, if you misbehave at school, you get arrested. You don’t get suspension,” says a rep. Details of the messages are being kept quiet in the juvenile case.
Last week, in its first quarterly earnings report as a public company, the social networking site announced that it has 955 million monthly active users and 543 million monthly active mobile users.
But this week, tucked away in the company filings, Facebook has revealed that 8.7 percent of these accounts are likely fake.
More than half of these “fake” accounts are duplicate profiles, while 2.4 percent are “user-misclassifed” (think: pets and memes) and 1.5 percent are considered “undesirable” accounts, such as those created by spammers.
The social networking behemoth was quick to point out that its figures may not be entirely accurate, however. On page 24 of the report, Facebook inserted this caveat, acknowledging limitations in their metrics:
“We believe the percentage of accounts that are duplicate or false is meaningfully lower in developed markets such as the United States or Australia and higher in developing markets such as Indonesia and Turkey. However, these estimates are based on an internal review of a limited sample of accounts and we apply significant judgment in making this determination, such as identifying names that appear to be fake or other behavior that appears inauthentic to the reviewers. As such, our estimation of duplicate or false accounts may not accurately represent the actual number of such accounts.”
As CNET points out, an active Facebook user ”does not necessarily mean someone using Facebook.com,” as the metric merely refers to using a Facebook account somewhere on the Internet. For example, if users chose to click the “recommend” button at the top of this article, they would be considered active by Facebook, regardless of whether or not they ever go on Facebook.com directly.
Finally, some good news for Google+.
The most recent American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) finds that users are much happier with the Google social network than they are with Facebook. Facebook scored 61 out of 100 in customer satisfaction (down from 66 last year), while Google+ scored 78. Of course, Facebook also has more than 900 million users, a much larger user base than Google’s site. “So,” Wired notes, “what the ACSI is really telling us is that Facebook is the addiction we hate, but just can’t kick.”
Facebook managed to rank amongst this year’s five lowest-scoring companies, thanks to user dissatisfaction with ads, privacy issues, the mobile app, and the new Timeline.
Google+ users, on the other hand, expressed more happiness with the site’s approach to privacy, ads, and mobile. “If Google+ continues to attract users at an aggressive pace, Facebook will run the risk of losing its main competitive advantage over time,” declares the report. In general, social media suffered from poor scores on the report, while search engines performed well.
Louisiana sex offenders are getting a status update on Facebook—whether they like it or not.
A new law that will go into effect Aug. 1 requires the state’s sex offenders and child predators to identify themselves as such on social networks. It’s the first such law in the US, says the state representative who championed the bill. “I don’t want to leave in the hands of social network or Facebook administrators, ‘Gee, I hope someone is telling the truth.’ This is another tool for prosecutors,” says Rep. Jeff Thompson.
Of course, CNN notes that in theory nothing should change, because Facebook bars registered sex offenders already. But offenders who ignore that policy will be required to give “notice of the crime for which he was convicted, the jurisdiction of conviction, a description of his physical characteristics … and his residential address,” the legislation, signed by Gov. Bobby Jindal, says. The penalty for not doing so? As many as 10 years in prison without parole.
Facebook has long banned kids under 13, but that could be about to change: The site is investigating ways to let children join—with built-in parental supervision.
For instance, kids’ accounts might be tied to those of their parents; mom and dad could get control over what apps kids can use and who they can friend. Doing so would give the site a chance to boost its number of users and rake in new revenue by edging in on the kids’ games market.
Reports suggest that 7.5 million kids are improperly on Facebook anyway, and the site is facing growing criticism over kids’ ability to lie their way online. And mom and dad aren’t always in the dark: A 2011 study found 36% of parents knew their not-yet-teen is on Facebook, and a chunk of those parents helped their kid create an account.
Still, observers are divided over the appropriate course of action: While Maryland’s attorney general has called on the site to create a “safe space” for kids, others say Zuck and Co. should simply ramp up its communication with parents about why the site isn’t the right place for youngsters. But the Wall Street Journal notes that the site frequently explores new technologies that never come to pass, so there’s no guarantee the plan will actually ever happen.
New York City has created its first set of rules regarding how teachers should operate on Facebook and beyond. Teachers are forbidden from “friending” students on Facebook and following them on Twitter, NPR reports. They are, however, allowed to have professional Facebook pages that the kids can follow.
“We know that we’re not our students’ friends as much as we love them and care about them in genuine ways,” says a principal. “We need to establish specific boundaries about the kinds of interactions we have with young people.”
But as social networking grows, setting boundaries can be a tightrope act in districts throughout the US. “On the one hand, the people seem to be encouraging educators to use social media with students,” says a law professor. “Yet they’re putting such tight confines on it that I think what they’re going to find is that most educators won’t take them up on it.”
Sure, it’s got 900 million users—but there’s a key demographic that may be slipping away from Facebook’s grasp. Young teens tell the Los Angeles Times that the social network no longer boasts much of a coolness factor.
“Facebook is just not the big fad anymore,” says a 15-year-old. For many of her peers, Twitter, Tumblr, texting, and other mobile apps beat Mark Zuckerberg’s site, and give them a little more privacy from Mom and Dad.
Meanwhile, Facebook is huge with older folks: It’s got a higher proportion of 50- to 64-year-old users than any other social network besides LinkedIn—almost a quarter—and 3 of 4 US moms using home computers checked into the site in March. But the stats don’t bear out the suggestion that teens are sick of Facebook, says an analyst: “Just because teens are using other services like Twitter and Tumblr more—and they are using these services in huge amounts—doesn’t mean they’re using Facebook less.” Indeed, 8 of 10 teens are on social networks, and 93% of them use Facebook.
Mistie Atkinson, 32, a California woman, accused of having sex with her estranged teen son she pursued through Facebook could be locked up for less than 2-1/2 years, according to reports.
A law enforcement source told the Daily News earlier this month that she first contacted her biological son online late last year, when he was 16. The messages became inappropriate, the source said.
Atkinson reportedly hadn’t seen the boy, who was living with his father, since he was 2. He’s now 17.
In March, authorities reportedly found the woman with her son in a hotel room, and she was arrested and charged with incest, oral copulation with a minor, contacting a minor for sex and sending harmful material. The Lake County woman allegedly sent naked photos of herself to her son.
Court filings also say police found videos on the boy’s phone showing him engaged in sexual activity with Atkinson. His father filed a restraining order in November, about two months after he said Atkinson began talking with the boy on Facebook and over the phone.
“She started to have a boyfriend-girlfriend relationship with him, not a mother-and-son relationship,” the man said, according to court documents. “It got to a point where their conversation began talking about harming me and killing off her boyfriend she was (now) living with.”
She remains in jail, reports said.
A Missouri high school principal resigned last week, one month after she was first accused of impersonating a student on Facebook so she could spy on students and parents online.
The profile for “Suzy Harriston” claimed she was from Clayton; many of her 300 Facebook friends were from Clayton High School. But on April 5, a 2011 Clayton grad accused principal Louise Losos of being the actual person behind the account. The account quickly vanished, Losos began a leave of absence, and then later resigned.
The district has released few details, but says the resignation was over “a fundamental dispute concerning the appropriate use of social media.”
It appears that the situation blew up after another controversy at the school over the firing of a popular football coach. Many students believed the firing was unfair, leading to a demonstration at the high school and a Facebook group supporting the coach. The coach had still been allowed to teach, but on April 4, the school board voted not to renew his contract. The next day, the post accusing Losos appeared on the Facebook group page—after “Harriston” sent friend requests to some of the members of the group.
How to protect your privacy on Facebook? For an increasing number of users, the answer is simple: Lie.
A quarter of respondents in a new Consumer Reports study admitted that they “alter personally identifiable information,” such as birthdate, on Facebook. Technically, that’s a violation of the social networking site’s Terms of Service, the New York Times points out. And more than twice as many people are doing it now as were two years ago, when the same question was asked.
Most of those surveyed said they protected their privacy by adjusting various settings, while almost 20% said they didn’t do anything to protect their privacy. Consumer Reports says the increase in people who lie is proof that users are becoming more wary of Facebook.
The Consumer Reports study also found that a large number of Facebook users revealed information on the site that could hurt them, including their whereabouts on a particular day or health information.
When a 14-year-old girl in Georgia discovered a phony Facebook page created in her name, she went to her school, the police, and even Facebook itself without much luck. The page stayed up, and its creators went unpunished. As a result, Alex Boston is now suing two classmates for libel, reports AP, which thinks the suit could trigger similar ones around the country.
Alex and her parents are pushing for Georgia to strengthen its cyberbullying laws, and the lawsuit seeks a jury trial to generate attention, along with unspecified damages.
The offending page came down about the time the lawsuit got filed last week. “At first blush, you wouldn’t think it’s a big deal,” says her attorney. “Once you actually see the stuff that’s on there, it’s shocking.”
Among other things, it claimed she spoke a made-up language called “Retardish” and was set up to look like Alex had posted a racist video.
Michael returns from his near death sickness (well, sorta near death) asking your help: what is there to watch on Netflix now that Star Trek Deep Space Nine is all watched up? Plus, Listener Mailbag, Friday the 13th, Things People Never Say, Kim Kardashian running for mayor of Glendale, the true power of Facebook and a very important question: “What will Dora the Explorer be like as an adult.” Be sure to click the Like / Tweet buttons to help promote The Michael Show!
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News Heard on the Show:
Ever wonder how much money you’re worth to Facebook?
Facebook reported having 901 million users and $1.058 billion in revenue. So if it maintains that rate over a full year, it would make an average of $4.69 to $4.81 on each user each year.
How is it making that money? Mostly, through advertising, which brought in $872 million. But payments and Facebook Credits are becoming an increasingly large slice of the pie, generating $186 million, compared to just $94 million over the same period last year.
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Generation Y, generally defined as those born between 1980 and 1999, have lost interest in many of the services and products their parents found important. What young adults care about has shifted. A recent study by Gartner research revealed that, if forced to choose, 46% of all 18-to-24-year-old drivers in the United States would choose access to the Internet over access to a car.
However, many products that have declined in popularity among the youth are more a result of the changing tastes across all ages than a generational shift. Examples include lower sales in traditional cell phones, maps and CDs. In 2002, compact discs had a more than 95% market share of music sales. In 2010, they had less than half. Various reports suggest this decline is the result of all age groups moving away from CD sales toward digital sales.
24/7 Wall St. has identified eight of the country’s most popular products that are losing favor, either solely among young adults or at a significantly higher rate among that group.
In 2010, at the launch of Facebook’s then-new messaging service, Mark Zuckerberg predicted the decline of electronic mail, stating that “Email is too slow … email is too formal.” Time is proving Zuckerberg right. From December 2009 to December 2010, time spent using email by the 12- to 17-years-old age group dropped a tremendous 59%. In comparison, time spent using email by people 55 to 64-years-old has
increased 22%, and it has increased 28% among those 65 years and older.
Light beer has become to the current generation of youth what regular beer was just a few decades ago. In 1990, more Budweiser was sold than the top three light beers combined. Twenty years later, Budweiser has taken a backseat to Bud Light, which sold as much as the top four regular beers combined. The country has taken a major generational shift in favor of light beers, which now account for four of the five most popular beers sold domestically. As reported by St. Louis Today, Budweiser believes four out of 10 people in their mid-20s have never tried regular beer. In 1988, that rate was just 1.5 out of ten. Beer Marketer’s Insights editor Eric Shepard said when asked about young drinkers turning to light beer, “The heaviest beer drinkers are young males and that’s where the market had been going over the last decade or so.”
While readership rates for print newspapers are falling across the board, the country’s younger generation has abandoned the medium the most. As of 2010, only 7% of 18- to 24-year-olds reported having read a print newspaper the day before, according to the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press. This is the first time that figure has reached single digits. This age group also has among the highest rates of people reportedly receiving news through social networking sites or Twitter.
As recently as 1998, 64.4% of potential drivers ages 19 and younger had drivers licenses, according to the Federal Highway Administration. As of 2008, that amount had dropped to 46.3%. Additionally, 46% of drivers aged 18 to 24 report that they would choose Internet access over owning a car, according to research firm Gartner. People are also waiting longer to get their licenses. According to the University of Michigan’s Transportation Research Institute, in 1983 one-third of all licensed drivers in U.S. were under 30. Today, only 22% of drivers are under 30. Companies such as General Motors (NYSE: GM) have reached out to more youth-oriented advertising companies, such as MTV Scratch, to address this widening gap in their sales.
5. Landline phones
Landline phones are losing popularity among Generation Y, who are becoming increasingly content with only having wireless phones. According to a report from the National Center for Health Statistics, 51.3% of Americans aged 25 to 29 lived in households with only wireless phones in the first six months of 2010. This is the first time the number of adults in wireless-only households has been greater than the number of adults in landline households for any age group. When looking at all ages combined, less than one-quarter of adults lived in households with only wireless phones.
Smoking rates among young people have historically exceeded those of the general population. Now that group is dropping the habit quicker than anyone. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the share of people 18 to 24 years of age who were current cigarette smokers decreased by 17.6% from 2005 to 2010 — the largest decrease among any age group. The share among 45- to 64-year-olds dropped only 3.6%. The amount of Americans 65 and older who smoke actually increased 10.5%.
7. Desktop computers
Millennials are the only generational group to be more likely to own a laptop computer than a desktop. According to data from Pew Research Center, 70% own a laptop, while 57% own a desktop. By contrast, 64% of those aged 57-65 own a desktop, while only 43% own a laptop. Ranjit Atwal, research director at Gartner, states in LAPTOP Magazine that those in Generation Y simply “are not buying PCs as their first, or necessarily main, device.”
Adults aged 18 to 24 watch less traditional television than any other age group in the country, according to Nielsen’s most recent Cross Platform Report. That group, on average, watches just under 24 hours per week. The national average is approximately 32.5 hours. One of the leading reasons for this difference is Generation Y’s relationship with the Internet. According to a report published in April 2010 by electronics review/research company Retrevo, 23% of those under 25 watch “most” of their television online, compared to 8% for everyone.
Facebook, in itself, is a force to be reckoned with. It recorded 845 million monthly active users as of December 2011 and revealed that these users spent a collective 10.5 billion minutes online every day.
With that many users, you’d have to wonder what Facebook is doing with all that data. A number of IT security experts have a lot of nasty things to say about the social network’s privacy policies, but most users are just pretty much clueless when it comes to this matter. Until now.
Facebook has just rolled out an update for its ‘Download Your Information’ tool, which lets users download what information the social network has on them.
“Starting today, you will be able to download an expanded archive of your Facebook account history. First introduced in 2010, Download Your Information lets you get a copy of what you’ve shared on Facebook, such as photos, posts, messages, a list of friends and chat conversations. Now you can access additional categories of information, including previous names, friend requests you’ve made and IP addresses you logged in from.
– Facebook announcement”
This announcement was met with mixed reactions. Some users were happy about the added options, while others responded with fear and disgust that Facebook had kept information that they had already removed or deleted from their profiles.
- Awesome!!!I use my FB as my online scrapbook so having access to things I have posted helps to re-inspire me.
- I don’t want to find more information I want to be able to hide what is already there!
- So, this means all our informations never get deleted from your server. Good food for intelligence departments.
- When will we be able to purge our Facebook history?
Which side are you on?
Take a potentially viral Facebook ad campaign, throw in a stripping model and you’ve got a mini-controversy.
A clothing company, Stussy Amsterdam, new Facebook ad campaign shows a picture of a bundled up model who, the ad says, will strip for “likes.” The more likes, the more clothes come off.
Observers point out that, because of Facebook’s strict no-nudity policy, it’s very unlikely the model will bare it all, no matter how many likes she gets. But the site also suggests the campaign may already be in violation of Facebook’s promotional guidelines, which note that, “You must not use Facebook features or functionality, such as the Like button, as a voting mechanism for a promotion.”
Arnold Amsterdam creative director, Colin Lamberton, whose agency is behind the campaign, told Adrants, “As you can imagine the model must be suffocating under that many layers of clothing. It is almost a public duty to free her out of this misery so we are expecting Facebook fans to help out here.”
Though the campaign has generated hundreds of “likes” already, MemeBurn suspects the ad could backfire on Stussy because it turns the model into a stripper.
Whereas models are glamorous, “Strippers wear clear plastic heels, have daddy issues and are ‘doing this to get through college’” MemeBurn writes.
Since September of last year, Facebook users have had the opportunity to experience a whole different kind of interaction with others through the social network’s Subscribe feature.
This function brings a new level of personalization to the New Feed by letting you see updates from Facebook users you’re interested in without having to “friend” them. In addition, users who choose to add the Subscribe button to their personal profile page can broadcast their public updates to a wider audience than just friends.
Subscribing to a Facebook user is pretty similar to liking a Page.
Facebook has released to The Huffington Post a list of the social network’s personal profiles with the highest number of subscribed users.
- Dane Cook 4, 123, 000 subscribers
- Rajon Rondo 3, 639, 000 subscribers
- Jessica Alba 3, 654, 389 subscribers
- Janel Tsai 2, 210, 000 subscribers
- Troy Polamalu 2, 072, 000 subscribers
- Mike Tyson 2, 054, 000 subscribers
- Chad Ochocinco 2, 044, 000 subscribers
- Chelsea Handler 1, 968, 000 subscribers
- Cesar Millan 1, 889, 000 subscribers
- Jared Leto 1, 830, 000 subscribers
- Tim Tebow 1, 789, 000 subscribers
- Britney Spears 1, 552, 000 subscribers
- Snoop Dogg 1, 463, 000 subscribers
- Jeremy Lin 1, 486, 000 subscribers
- Steve Harvey 1, 339, 000 subscribers
One quick way to feel better about your life: delete your Facebook account. Or, at the very least, spend less time on it.
A new study suggests that the more you use Facebook, the more likely you are to believe that your friends are happier and lead better lives than you, Miller-McCune reports.
Also contributing: the number of Facebook “friends” you don’t actually know. The more of them clogging up your news feed, the more likely you are to think others are happier than you. ”The more hours people spent on Facebook, the stronger was their agreement that others were happier,” the paper reads. Similarly, those who used Facebook more were less likely to agree with the statement, “Life is fair.”
The author of the study thinks this is all due to “correspondence bias,” in which we assume others are happy based on the happy pictures and happy status updates they post—without taking into consideration that it may all be for show. But those who spent more time socializing with friends in real life were less likely to think others lead happier lives, indicating that real-life get-togethers can be a good reality check.
Facebook is watching you — even if you’re not a Facebook user — but insists it’s less nefarious than rivals who do the same thing.
The social networking giant uses tracking cookies to keep a running log of every page users have visited for the past 90 days, engineering director Arturo Bejar tells the USA Today. It also tracks anyone, user or otherwise, who happens onto Facebook for any reason.
Facebook says it uses that data only to improve its security and user experience, unlike Google, Microsoft and Yahoo who use the same technology to target advertisements to users.
However, not everyone is convinced of Facebook’s intentions. Congressmen Ed Markey and Joe Barton, for instance, sent Zuckerberg a letter asking why Facebook had applied for a patent on a method of correlating tracking data and ads. Facebook’s response? “We patent lots of things,” a spokesman says.
A judge has ordered a feuding Connecticut couple to turn their passwords for Facebook and dating sites over to each other’s divorce lawyers.
The unusual order was issued after the husband claimed that his soon-to-be ex-wife’s Facebook account contained evidence that would help him win full custody of their children—and she was planning to delete it.
The judge’s order violates Facebook’s terms of service, which requires users not to hand over their passwords to anybody else, Forbes notes, but he did at least make it clear that he doesn’t want to see the couple using their Facebook access to prank each other. “Neither party shall visit the website of the other’s social network and post messages purporting to be the other,” he wrote in the order.
A Chicago high school student,similar to what got Mark Zuckerberg into trouble when he started Facebook, faces expulsion after publicly ranking the looks and sexual promiscuity of 50 girls in his school in great detail and posting it on Facebook.
The student printed the list and distributed it in fliers around the school, reports the Chicago Sun-Times. It included nicknames such as “The Designated Drunk” and “The Amazing Bisexual,” separate ratings of faces and body parts, and references to race and ethnicity.
“I was shaking,” said one girl at Oak Park-River Forest High School after seeing the list. “Everyone wants to just go home and forget about it. But you can’t.”
A cell phone video shows the suspected culprit distributing fliers to boys in the student center. Other students also may face disciplinary action.
The picture above is one of the girls rated on the list. I think she got a “0″ in all categories.
Bad idea: Kissing your 18-year-old former student on the lips.
Worse idea: Taking a picture of it.
Totally insane idea: Posting that picture to Facebook.
In New York City at least three educators, in the past six months, have been fired for having inappropriate student-teacher relations on the social networking site. Two fired teachers, both male, are accused of flirting with female students via Facebook, the New York Post reports.
One allegedly wrote comments like “This is sexy” under their photos and posted ill-advised lines like, “I’m not a gynecologist, but I’ll take a look inside.” The other is accused of sending inappropriate messages, like telling one girl she was pretty and another that her “boyfriend [doesn’t] deserve a beautiful girl like you.”
The Department of Education doesn’t yet have an official policy in effect for student-teacher Facebook communication.