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Posts Tagged ‘Andy Carvin’

Cut Through All That Twitter Noise With PostPost’s Improved Search Tool

November 17th, 2011 11:45 admin View Comments

PostPost, a powerful, noise-reducing search tool for Twitter, has pushed out some updates that make it even more useful. When we first covered PostPost in April, we were struck by how easy it made sifting through one’s Twitter timeline. To do that, it narrows your stream down to the most important 200 users and then indexes their last 400 tweets.

Since then, PostPost has been updated to handle searches far more effectively. First, it switched its default search operator from OR to AND, which improves the results for queries containing multiple words. It also now uses a link: operator to let you search for links to specific sites or pages. Searches for multimedia content now return more specific results as well. Instead of searching broadly for videos or photos, you can drill down to just YouTube or just Instagram.

PostPost not only indexes the content of tweets, but also digs into the content on the target pages as well. That way, if you search for “Occupy Wallstreet”, tweets that may not include those exact words will still show up, so long as the link points to a page that does contain the phrase.

The value of a tool like this cannot be understated. NPR social media guru Andy Carvin, speaking at ReadWriteWeb’s 2Way Summit this summer, bemoaned the difficulty of searching and resurfacing old tweets. Carvin is not alone. Trying to find a tweet from even a few days ago can be a challenging ordeal using Twitter’s native search tool or bigger search engines like Google and Bing.

PostPost attempts to alleviate this problem by not only indexing tweets from the last several weeks, but by limiting your stream to only the most important users. In our initial tests, it seems to have done a pretty good job of doing so. We were delighted to see relevant tweets from early October, something that typically would be very difficult using Twitter’s own search.

postpost-twitter-search.jpg

Source: Cut Through All That Twitter Noise With PostPost’s Improved Search Tool

Cut Through All That Twitter Noise With PostPost’s Improved Search Tool

November 17th, 2011 11:45 admin View Comments

PostPost, a powerful, noise-reducing search tool for Twitter, has pushed out some updates that make it even more useful. When we first covered PostPost in April, we were struck by how easy it made sifting through one’s Twitter timeline. To do that, it narrows your stream down to the most important 200 users and then indexes their last 400 tweets.

Since then, PostPost has been updated to handle searches far more effectively. First, it switched its default search operator from OR to AND, which improves the results for queries containing multiple words. It also now uses a link: operator to let you search for links to specific sites or pages. Searches for multimedia content now return more specific results as well. Instead of searching broadly for videos or photos, you can drill down to just YouTube or just Instagram.

PostPost not only indexes the content of tweets, but also digs into the content on the target pages as well. That way, if you search for “Occupy Wallstreet”, tweets that may not include those exact words will still show up, so long as the link points to a page that does contain the phrase.

The value of a tool like this cannot be understated. NPR social media guru Andy Carvin, speaking at ReadWriteWeb’s 2Way Summit this summer, bemoaned the difficulty of searching and resurfacing old tweets. Carvin is not alone. Trying to find a tweet from even a few days ago can be a challenging ordeal using Twitter’s native search tool or bigger search engines like Google and Bing.

PostPost attempts to alleviate this problem by not only indexing tweets from the last several weeks, but by limiting your stream to only the most important users. In our initial tests, it seems to have done a pretty good job of doing so. We were delighted to see relevant tweets from early October, something that typically would be very difficult using Twitter’s own search.

postpost-twitter-search.jpg

Source: Cut Through All That Twitter Noise With PostPost’s Improved Search Tool

Fear Not, Unemployed Girl Kittens Sticking It To The Man! The Internet Community Has Your Back

June 11th, 2011 06:13 admin View Comments

It’s one of those stories about which it’s impossible to be cynical. Alice Pyne, a British teenager suffering from terminal Hodgkin’s lymphoma, has drawn up a “bucket list” of things she’d like to achieve before she dies.

This being the social media age, Alice posted her list online and – this being the Internet age – thousands of well-wishers are now using Twitter, Facebook and the rest to help make a dying girl’s dreams come true.

Or as the standfirst of Mary Elizabeth Williams’s Salon article put it: “Alice Pyne still has a few things she’d like to do. Now the Internet community is making them happen.”

Hrm. It might be impossible to be cynical about Alice Pyne and the generous folks who have rallied to her comfort — but as for the wider notion of a good and noble “Internet community”? Yeah, that one is way overdue for demolition.

Let’s start with the phrase itself: The Internet Community – that ragtag band of 2.09 billion people currently online who, while counting Nobel prize winners, Presidents and other overworked souls amongst their numbers, are always ready to take up whatever cause seems most deserving. Especially if that cause happens to have as its figurehead a sick child, a brave soldier, an attractive woman fallen on hard times or – I dunno – an unemployed kitten who is bravely trying to overthrow a murderous Arab regime. (The only thing the Internet Community loves more than the underdog is the undercat). One might as well praise the amazing work being done by the “electricity community” or the “oxygen community”.

Really, what the press calls The Internet Community is more accurately described as The People With Too Much Time On Their Hands Community — or perhaps The I Spend My Life Dicking Around On Twitter And Call It A Job Community, The I’ll Do Anything The Internet Tells Me To Do Community or The So Fucking Gullible I Should Be Locked Away For My Own Safety Community.

Just take a look at some of the Community’s other triumphs over the past few weeks. Back on May 25th, they declared a Fatwa on Urban Outfitters after the evil corporate behemoth (The Man: check) ripped off some jewelry designs from Etsy member Stevie Koerner (attractive woman on hard times: check). The result: a gale of Twitter and blogosphere outrage directed against the company and a ton of orders for Koerner, who told NBC Chicago:

“The internet community is so strong, and I’m happy people are fired up about supporting independent artists and designers… It’s very inspiring to be part of a community who has unified through the internet and whose voice has been heard.”

By the time Regretsy’s Helen Killer pointed out that Koerner’s own design was far from original, and that Urban Outfitters were probably innocent in this case, the Community had already moved on to their next good cause.

Step forward A Gay Girl In Damascus, a young lesbian blogger (check!) called Amina Abdullah who was reportedly arrested by Syrian forces (check! check!) for her brave stand (check!) against an oppressive regime. It didn’t take long for Amina’s plight to be the talk of the Twitterverse, with The Internet Community demanding that “action” be taken (and emails be sent to the Syrian government) to secure her release. “A Gay Girl In Damascus Blogger Kidnapped: Take Action!” cried Feministing.com, linking to a “Free Amina Abdullah” Facebook page. It was only after the dreaded mainstream media (lead by NPR’s Andy Carvin) picked up the story that questions began to be asked: has anyone actually met Abdullah? Why does every attempted telephone or in-person interview with her end up being cancelled at the last minute? Why is the profile picture posted on Abdullah’s blog actually that of Londoner Jelena Lecic? Legitimate safety concerns or a cruel hoax? Who cares! As the moderator of the Free Amina group put it…

“Questions about Amina’s identity are surfacing. However, we think it is possible that the writer of the blog is indeed in custody, in which case, it is important to continue to support her.”

Moving on…

On Wednesday it was time for another boycott; this time against Delta airlines for their shameful treatment of a group of soldiers returning from Afghanistan (ding ding ding!) who were charged $200 each in excess baggage charges for their equipment. The soldiers in question made a video naming and shaming Delta and within hours the Internet Community were on the warpath. Meantime, back on the Reddit thread that sparked the initial outrage, people familiar with military transport (and airline) policy began to raise their hands and point out that – uh – Delta already has a special allowance for troops to check three bags at no charge, with the military reimbursing soldiers for any baggage charges beyond that. Sure enough, the video has since been deleted. Too late though – the calls for a boycott had already made it halfway around the world before the truth had put its pants on, forcing Delta to apologize for doing nothing wrong.

Spend a few minutes Googling The Internet Community and for every heartwarming success story like that of Alice Pyne’s bucket list you’ll find a hundred misplaced boycotts, bone-headed DDOS attacks, ass-backward outrage and hours wasted in the pursuit of non-justice. There’s a reason for the popularity of Snopes.com: the long-suffering mother of the Internet, constantly reminding its Community that it’s probably unwise to poke forks into electrical outlets.

Malcolm Gladwell wrote in the New Yorker that the most effective online campaigns are those which require the least effort: a click, a retweet, maybe an email or two. It should come as no surprise, then, that many self-styled Internet activists can’t find the time or inclination to carry out the most basic due diligence before throwing their hat into the ring of outrage.

And yet, suggesting that moronic, over-sentimental, knee-jerk outrage is unique to some mythical “Internet Community” is as ridiculous as giving that same Community credit for doing good. For all the seductive nonsense about the wisdom of the crowds, large groups of people have always tended to act in stupid ways. The Internet just makes it easier than ever to turn that stupidity into action.

Source: Fear Not, Unemployed Girl Kittens Sticking It To The Man! The Internet Community Has Your Back

Weekly Wrap-up: The Year the Check-in Died, Twitter Drops Ruby for Java, The Future of the Camera and More…

April 16th, 2011 04:00 admin View Comments

weekly_wrapup-1.png One of our top posts this week was Richard MacManus’ look at the future of the camera. We all know how smartphones integrated cameras. “Could we be about to see the inverse – cameras integrating smartphone technology?” he asked. The story is part of our ongoing series looking at what it means to consume and produce media in post-PC-centric world.

After the jump you’ll find more of this week’s top news stories on some of the key trends that are shaping the Web – mobile, location, Internet of Things – plus highlights from our six channels. Read on for more.

Top Stories of the Week

More coverage and analysis from ReadWriteWeb

Get Ready For The ReadWriteWeb 2WAY Summit: June 13-14 in New York City

Join ReadWriteWeb for one of the top tech events of the summer. Day one of the summit will feature talks from some of the smartest folks in technology and media, including Fred Wilson, Gawker CEO Nick Denton, Jason Calacanis, danah boyd, Flipboard CEO Mike McCue, Chris Dixon, NPR’s Andy Carvin and more. Day two is all about learning and interaction, with breakout discussions and enriching workshops that cater to all levels of Web knowledge.

Visit the event site now for more information and to buy your ticket.


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Source: Weekly Wrap-up: The Year the Check-in Died, Twitter Drops Ruby for Java, The Future of the Camera and More…

Propose Your Session for the ReadWriteWeb 2WAY Summit NYC

March 21st, 2011 03:00 admin View Comments

2way-lead-image.pngAs you may have read recently, we’re having our next great event, the two-day ReadWriteWeb 2WAY Summit on June 13-14 in New York City. While programming for day one is all but set with awesome speakers including danah boyd, Jason Calacanis, Andy Carvin, Nick Denton and Fred Wilson, day two will feature many breakout sessions covering a wide variety of Web topics.

That’s where you come in.

Our previous events have always featured our smart readers helping to shape the agenda, and the 2WAY Summit is no different. That’s why session proposals for day two sessions are now being accepted.

If you think you’ve got something worth talking about, whether by yourself or as a panel, workshop, or other format, give us your pitch by filling out the form embedded below.

If your session idea catches our interest, we’ll contact you to discuss more. Session organizers will also receive a complimentary pass to the 2WAY Summit for both days.

If you’d just like to join us as an attendee, our “early adopter” pricing is on right now!

Good luck with your proposal! (you can visit the form permalink here)

Source: Propose Your Session for the ReadWriteWeb 2WAY Summit NYC

Flickr Confirms Taking Down Egyptian Blogger’s Photos, Cites Community Guidelines Violation

March 11th, 2011 03:32 admin View Comments

Last weekend Egyptian protestors broke into Amn al Dowla, the Cairo headquarters for the Egyptian security agency, and removed a “treasure trove” of video disks, hard disks and CDs with government documents from the Mubarak era.

Egyptian blogger Hossam Arabawy came into possession of a CD from the raid and has been uploading a set of Secret Service officer pics to Flickr for the past week. Arabawy posted on his on blog that Flickr removed the photos yesterday, citing copyright infringement. Arabawy’s post led to NPR’s Andy Carvin asking Flickr for a response to the accusations of censorship.

Flickr responded both to Carvin and to me, citing user complaints as impetus for the takedowns:

“The images in question were removed because they were not that member’s work. As stated by the Community Guidelines, ‘Flickr accounts are intended for members to share original photos and video that they themselves have created.’

Flickr isn’t a place for members to just host images but a place where members share original photos and video; and the Flickr community is built around that. For this reason, when we discover images that violate this provision, we may remove such images from the account and, in some instances, delete the account altogether.

While we regret that this action has upset the user, he must understand that this is not a decision we ever take lightly but only as necessary to ensure that Flickr remains a great place to creatively post and share original photos and videos with friends, family and the world.”

When asked whether the user complaints were specifically about the Community Guidelines, a Flickr representative responded, “After receiving complaints from other users about the set, we conducted a review and discovered that it was in violation of our Community Guidelines.  We then acted accordingly.”

Indeed, the photos in question were not taken by Arabawy. We could go on all night like this but the main point is Flickr has (a valid) excuse.

Source: Flickr Confirms Taking Down Egyptian Blogger’s Photos, Cites Community Guidelines Violation

What Makes @ACarvin Tweet? (TCTV)

February 28th, 2011 02:14 admin View Comments

The recent compounded protests and revolutions in the Middle East and North Africa have had the unintended side effect of highlighting information nodes/elites like @Ghonim and @Sultanalqassemi, people who electively become human routers of related information on Twitter, Facebook and other social networks.

NPR’s Senior Strategist Andy Carvin has been one of the most prominent Western information routers, spending 15-17 hours a day tweeting out news about the region, getting rate limited and subsequently whitelisted by Twitter, and at one point becoming so synonymous with #Egypt that someone anonymously sent him a shirt “I followed @ACarvin before #Egypt did.”

I sat down on Sunday morning to talk to Carvin about why he’s decided to devote his tweet stream to this new form of curation, what his process was for the filtering and repackaging of information, and what digital tools exist or could exist to make it easier for people like Carvin to continue to refine the closest we’ve come to the ideal form of Twitter journalism.

You can watch the entire interview (please get past my  beginning awkwardness) above.

Source: What Makes @ACarvin Tweet? (TCTV)

Cartoon: Maybe Start Using Get Satisfaction, Too?

February 27th, 2011 02:30 admin View Comments

2011.02.26.formspring-thumbnail.pngThere’s something about the way people at the top of the heap react when they start to feel the hierarchy shift beneath their feet. It’s as though they go through four of the Kübler-Ross stages simultaneously – denial, bargaining, violent rage and depression (actually, that last one looks a lot more like self-pity). Acceptance only seems to kick in once it’s wheels-down in the luxurious-place-of-exile of the now-former dictator’s choice.

With Mubarak, that process is now complete. With Ghadafi, it’s still underway – and every day, the damage to his country and people multiplies. And while the debate still rages over how large a role social media have played in the past month’s events across the Arab world, there’s no question that Twitter, Facebook and YouTube have given the rest of us a window into a remarkable period of potentially profound, historical change.

If you want to see what that looks like, and you haven’t been following Andy Carvin’s Twitter feed, definitely check it out. He has been retweeting tirelessly since the early days of what many are calling the Jasmine Revolution, giving voice to an incredibly diverse range of people.

2011.02.26.formspring.png

More Noise to Signal.

Source: Cartoon: Maybe Start Using Get Satisfaction, Too?

NPR’s Andy Carvin Shows How to Retweet Globally (Map)

February 24th, 2011 02:34 admin View Comments

carvinRTlocations.jpg

There’s no better way to see Tweets about the Middle East than by following NPR Senior Strategist Andy Carvin. He’s curating, verifying when possible and reporting on Tweets from the contentious region day and night.

How diverse are the Tweets Carvin is curating? We used the handy web app Needlebase to scrape, analyze and map the Twitter community Carvin is bringing into the streams of his own community of followers and found some interesting data points. He’s retweeted 186 distinct Twitter accounts over the last four days alone.

  • 56% of the accounts Carvin has shared content from have listed recognizable locations on their Twitter profiles. 44% have undisclosed or unclear locations, no doubt in some cases for reasons of personal safety.
  • A healthy 40% of those who have listed locations are located in the Middle East!
  • Only 15% of the people Retweeted are from the United States.
  • Eight are from Libya, though several of those are satirical accounts.

Many more levels and types of analysis are possible and of course locations aren’t verified. But for now it’s nice to know that the people watching Andy Carvin’s Tweet stream (I sure am) are getting a diverse stream of messages with a solid percentage of those sources coming from the region in question.

Thanks for all you do, Andy!

Source: NPR’s Andy Carvin Shows How to Retweet Globally (Map)

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