Social media changes so much in a week that it can be hard to keep up. Check back every Friday for our roundup of stories we think you should know about in our Social Media Snap.
This week was a busy one for social media. From headlining tragedies to what some might consider “business as usual”, social media certainly gave us no shortage of headlines.
- A study released from Beihang University in China revealed that anger is the most influential emotion on social media. This revelation can help researchers and brands understand how news is spread, why some content goes viral and trends in how users interact with social media posts.
- When an event occurs such as the Colorado floods and the Washington D.C. Navy Yard shooting, people often look to social media as a source for minute-by-minute updates from “credible” sources. While social media often plays a key role in news reporting, as it did with the floods, the use of social media as a source by reporters often leads to the spread of incorrect information. The D.C. shooting was yet another example of social media gone wrong as contradictory posts and updates followed in the hours after the event.
- This week an appeals court ruled that a “Like” on Facebook is protected as free speech. This ruling came out of a Virginia lawsuit filed by former employees of a sheriff’s office who lost their jobs after “Liking” his opponent’s campaign page on Facebook. It will be interesting to see how this ruling impacts future lawsuits involving the implications of one’s actions on social media sites.
- Facebook has been struggling to hold its users’ interest lately, and now we may know why. Researchers at the University of Vienna have learned that many people are quitting Facebook – committing “virtual identity suicide” due to concerns over privacy, social pressure, Internet addiction and shallow conversations. This growing trend could impact not only Facebook itself, but also many companies who rely on its services to connect with users.
- Pinterest has been heralded as a great way for retail sites, blogs, and the like to drive users to their websites. However, a study from the ad technology company Yeildbot revealed that while Pinterest can increase traffic on your website, it doesn’t really help your advertisers. According to the study, people who visited a site through Pinterest click on ads 45 percent less than the average of all visitors.
- While the average Twitter user may not care about the company’s recent announcement to go public, they might care about how this decision will affect the site and user experience. In fact, Twitter has already launched a redesign in the hopes of attracting new users before its IPO.
- Many are questioning Twitter’s decision to go public, especially considering the less-than-hopeful precedent set by many public social media and online companies (i.e. Facebook). Mashable has outlined several risk factors that Twitter needs to watch and address if it’s going to maintain its position as heavy hitter in the online world after its IPO.