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What Happens to Twitter Ad Networks When Twitter Launches Ads?
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Twitter is expected to launch an ad platform this month (some have speculated this will happen at SXSW). While this hasn’t been confirmed, the industry has been waiting for quite some time to Twitter to launch such a monetization model.

New Twitterers and Tweets Slow in February

Each month, we look at Twitter’s growth based on total tweets and new user registrations. This data is supplied by Matthew Daines, the lead developer for our own Twitter app Twellow.

Google Makes Facebook Pages a Higher Priority for Businesses
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Google announced via Twitter this week, that public status updates from Facebook are now included in the search engine’s real-time search feature. That means the largest social network in the world is getting play in Google’s real-time search alongside Twitter, MySpace, and others, and these real-time results are often featured prominently on the first page of search results for the hottest queries.

Twitter to Get More Useful in Time for Monetization?
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Twitter engineer Alex Payne tweeted over the weekend, "If you had some of the nifty site features that we Twitter employees have, you might not want to use a desktop client. (You will soon.)" Some took that to mean that Twitter was working on some new features for its own site, that would essentially render some popular third-party clients all but obsolete. The question is whether this is a legitimate concern for developers, or it has just been blown out of proportion. It could possibly be a combination of the two.

Twellow Gets Twitter OAuth Support

Our Twellow team has been working hard on getting Twellow set up to use Twitter’s OAuth system, and that support is now available on Twellow.com.

"The Twellow OAuth upgrade is a major improvement for Twellow users," Twellow’s Lead Developer Matthew Daines says. "Not only is it much more secure, but it also increases the amount of interaction users can have with the Twitter universe from Twellow."

How Will Twitter Show Users Ads?
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Twitter is testing an ad platform, which is expected to be released next month, possibly at the South By Southwest event in Austin. Though the timing of the release has not been confirmed, Twitter’s head of product management and monetization, Anamitra Banerji, told MediaPost that they "are working on an ad platform, but it’s only in the test phase."

Google Writes the Buzz Handbook 5 Tips at a Time
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Since the launch of Google Buzz, there has been a seemingly endless amount of chatter about the things that are wrong with it. Privacy concerns and other gripes have kind of taken center stage, even though Buzz usage was impressive pretty much right out of the box.

MySpace: Expect More Discovery Products

There has been a bit of discussion throughout the Blogosphere that MySpace is changing its direction, trying to differentiate itself from other social networks like Facebook. They reportedly have a new product strategy called "Discover and be Discovered", which would include a feature simply called "Discovery."

Not many details are known about MySpace’s forthcoming new direction, but the company gave WebProNews the following statement on the subject:

What if Facebook Added a “Blog” Tab?
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Facebook wants to keep users on Facebook. So far, they are doing a pretty good job of that. More and more people are spending more of their online time on Facebook, not to mention, spending more time connected to the web in general (at least partially due to rising use of smartphones).

How much time do you spend on Facebook in a month? A week?
 Let us know.

LinkedIn Can Be One of Your Most Valuable Traffic Sources
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LinkedIn is often discussed as a powerful social networking tool, particularly for business professionals, employers, and jobseekers. What is not discussed as frequently is the site’s ability to simply drive traffic to your site. We talked to entrepreneur Lewis Howes (who claims that LinkedIn is one of the top traffic sources to his blogs) about how powerful LinkedIn can be for driving traffic.

PleaseRobMe Hits Foursquare Users with a Dose of Reality
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Update: Fousquare has issued a respons to the attention PleaseRobMe has brought to potential privacy issues associated with location sharing. What it boils down to is that Foursquare "takes privacy seriously" and it’s "really a bigger question about the pros and cons of location sharing in general". Read the company’s entire response here.

Social Media and Email Continue to Get Cozy
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Update: Microsoft also reportedly has deals in place with Facebok and MySpace which will see these social networks integrated with Outlook as well.

Facebook Fixes News Feed, Still Irritates Users
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Facebook has responded to a news feed issue that users have been experiencing and bellyaching about. On its Facebook Page, the company posted:

"We’ve heard from many of you who are seeing a delay in your News Feed posts. We’ve fixed this issue and you should see your News Feeds gradually return to normal. Thanks for your feedback."

Is Google Bad at Social Media or Really, Really Good at it?
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Google often takes a lot of flack for not being incredibly successful with its social media efforts. Most recently, Caroline McCarthy and Tom Krazit tackled this subject in a CNET article claiming that "Google struggles with social skills." I would not go so far as to say that I completely disagree with them. They make plenty of factual points that are simply undeniable. Orkut hasn’t set the world afire. Jaiku and Dodgeball didn’t work out.

More Than Just a Redesign Going on with Facebook This Week
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It’s been a pretty big week for Facebook. Not only is there a lot of talk about Facebook’s potential for becoming the top news source on the web, but the company celebrated its sixth birthday, is passing the 400 million user mark, and began rolling out some new design changes. In addition, the company is said to be rewriting its messaging feature and preparing to launch a webmail product, but first things first.

Does the Facebook Application Dashboard Hurt Privacy?
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Update 2: Facebook has responded to the privacy concerns with the dashboards: "To ensure that the dashboards meet user and developer expectations for a trustworthy experience, we’re giving developers the ability to hide their applications in the Friends’ Recent Activity, Friends’ Applications, and Friends’ Games sections of the dashboards.

Twitter.com Users Get New Hovercards Feature
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Twitter has introduced a new feature for Twitter.com called Hovercards. These are simply little windows that pop up when you hover over any name on your timeline.

It’s important to note that a lot of people use Twitter through different applications and never even see Twitter’s actual site. It is nice to see that Twitter recognizes that people do still use Twitter.com.

Hovercards display information like name, profile pic, location, whether or not you follow them, verified user info, etc.

As Companies Relax on Social Media, Threats Increase
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Even as social media has grown to be a much more widely accepted form of communication among businesses over the years, there is still plenty of data out there depicting the flaws and setbacks that can occur when social networks are used in the business environment.

Facebook Wants To Be Your News Source
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We recently discussed how social media complements the news industry, and how a study has even found news to be a top priority of Twitter users. Facebook wants to let users know that it can also be used to keep track of news, when you set up a news list.

Number of New Twitterers Increases Significantly

Every month, WebProNews has been looking at Twitter’s growth in terms of new user registration and number of Tweets. In January, we looked at December’s numbers which showed an increase in tweeting frequency, as Twitter surpassed a billion tweets in a month.

In January, total tweets sent were the largest on record. However, they increased at 6.34% over December, which is the second lowest increase for the last twelve months. Only August saw a lower rate at -6.2%.

Twitter Launches Local Trends for Everyone
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For a week or so, some Twitter users have been seeing a new feature called Local Trends. This feature shows users things that are being heavily talked about at the city and state levels. Twitter has now announced that the feature is live for all users.