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Facebook Sues DEA Over Fake Profile Pages

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Facebook has tried, almost to a fault, to protect the identities of its users — as long as they’re real. See, for example, the site’s recent conflict that ended with the network allowing some users who dress as members of the opposite gender to use their stage names online.

The drama was based around fake profiles, which are highly frowned upon in Zuckerberg’s environment.

Recently, Facebook poked the Drug Enforcement Agency because it wants “assurances” that the feds are no longer using fake profile pages to conduct investigations. Read more

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10 Biggest and 5 Most Surprising Brands ‘Friended’ by Millennials

Facebook BEER

No alcohol here, sorry.

Recent studies have told us that the kids these days just aren’t really into brands on social media. WPP found that 55 percent of young Americans don’t see the point of “friending” a brand, and Edelman told us yesterday that a vast majority of consumers simply aren’t satisfied with the “relationships” they have with corporate entities online — even the ones whose products they buy.

Many brands, however, have managed to accumulate thousands, if not millions, of Millennial “fans.” Independent ad agency Moosylvania recently conducted a survey of 1,500 young people to identify the top 50 such brands, and we’ve reviewed the first 10 for this post.

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4 Takes on Facebook’s ‘New’ Paid Media Platform

Fbook coffee

This year’s Advertising Week has already involved plenty of high-profile speakers and events that we were unable to attend. But one of the biggest announcements concerned Facebook and the relaunch of its cookie-free paid content placement platform, Atlas.

This doesn’t just concern ad agencies — it’s a big deal to anyone working in paid media. In short, it will supposedly help marketers better prove the ROI of their clients’ social media investments.

We asked our contacts in the marketing world for their takes on what the new development means to the marketing industry at large.

Adam Miller, social media specialist at Walker Sands Communications:

“Facebook’s relaunch of Atlas stresses the importance of tying digital marketing efforts and social media marketing together. Facebook is restoring an old Microsoft initiative after acquiring it 16 months ago. The relaunch was meant to help marketers serve ads based on demographics rather than cookies. As consumers use a variety of devices to surf the internet and learn about different companies, Atlas gives agencies with integrated marketing programs the opportunity to better target their audience without the limits of cookies.

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Insulting Customers on Facebook: Real-Life Basil Fawlty or Just Bad PR?

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Today we bring you a guest post from Alison Lancaster, an account manager at Pressat, a press release distribution service based in Ancoats, UK. She has more than 15 years experience working in the PR industry. You can follow her on Linkedin.

With about two-thirds of consumers checking online reviews before booking a place to stay, many small businesses are leveraging social media to handle customer feedback — be it positive or negative. After all, such content is readable by potential future guests.

However, the act of maintaining a good public image is not on the top of one Scottish hostel owner’s list.

Todd Pedersen, who runs the Blue Sky Hostel in Glasgow, recently attracted international media coverage after branding a guest a “retard” on the hostel’s Facebook page when the customer voiced her discontent in a negative review.

Then things went a little crazy. Screenshots after the jump.

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L.A. Sheriff’s Office: Stop Calling Us About Facebook!

Since it’s a Friday, we’d like to share this amusing tweet from the L.A. Sheriff’s office:

Things we learned from this single message:

  • Facebook went down for some people this morning/afternoon
  • Some users’ reliance on Facebook is so great that they will call the cops to try and figure out what happened
  • The volume of calls was such that the department’s spokesperson had to let everyone know that the Sheriff’s Department and the Facebook customer service team are not, in fact, the same organization (side note: we’re pretty sure Facebook does not actually have such a team)

Somewhere, Mark Zuckerberg is (probably) smiling…or is he?!

[H/T Salon on that clip]

Phony Fans Aside, Shakira Reaches 100M Facebook Likes

shakira fbA new milestone has been reached on Facebook: Shakira has 100 million likes, the first person to hit that mark. Actually, at the time of this writing, she’d already exceeded that by 718,000-plus likes. The photo at right, posted on the 12th of this month, actually has more than 3.6 million likes on its own, making it one of the most liked pics on the social network.

The Shakira page juggernaut is fueled by her status not just as a celebrity in this country, but around the world. In and of itself, having a ton of Facebook likes only means so much. Just because a lot of people clicked the button doesn’t mean they’re buying what you’re selling. But her page does show that with all of her fans comes a good amount of awareness and engagement.

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Sheryl Sandberg Shrugs Off Facebook’s Latest Scandal

Mark Zuckerberg has yet to begin his apology tour for Facebook’s latest crossing of the invisible line with a research paper that did not get pre-approval from the ethics board at Cornell University.

Today, however, Sheryl Sandberg addressed the matter at a totally-not-related event. Robinson Meyer of The Atlantic sums up her reponse in popular emoji form:

That’s pretty much it. A quote after the jump…

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Facebook’s Own Records Contradict Its Latest Apology

FACE!

If by “people” you mean “Facebook researchers”

We won’t say that Facebook has gotten good at apologizing, but they’re certainly used to it. At this point, even your great aunt has heard about the disastrous effects of a research paper that revealed the details of the company’s “manipulative” emotional A/B testing study. It might be Facebook’s biggest PR challenge to date because, even though it was probably not illegal, many users feel violated somehow.

The damage control line so far has been “it’s all about research” with the ultimate goal of improving the user experience–and that everyone implicitly agreed to play the part of unknowing digital lab rat when he/she clicked “OK” on Facebook’s terms and conditions.

Last night, however, a Forbes story undermined this claim.

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The REAL Cost of Facebook Paid Reach

Despite Facebook’s increasing revenue (this week’s half-hour outage “only” cost the company $500,000), many in marketing are a bit bearish on the company’s futures in terms of its true value in dollars, cents and eyeballs.

The primary complaint, of course, concerns the demonstrable decline of organic reach. Facebook finally addressed the issue after six months of complaints, but product marketing leader Brian Boland’s response pleased exactly no one that we know.

Facebook still claims that its primary goal is to improve user experience, not profit margin…but new data from our friends at digital agency Flightpath indicates otherwise.

It’s not just organic: the agency’s clients noted a recent decline in the reach of their paid posts, and Flightpath turned the data into an infographic.

Facebook paid reach

As you can see, the price of pay-to-play has more than doubled over just six months.

We can’t be sure if all agency clients have seen the same trends, but we’re very curious. Those numbers are scarier than two dozen smiling Zuckerbergs staring us down.

Facebook (Finally) Explains What Happened to Your Organic Reach

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We’re all aware that our beloved Facebook has gone through some…changes this year.

You may recall a certain blogger’s attempts to explain the new “problem with Facebook” in a clip that went viral way back in January, but the company’s own ad product marketing leader Brian Boland finally addressed the issue in a post that went live yesterday.

So what happened to that organic reach? Let’s review…

Read more

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