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Social Media Newsfeed: Facebook Real-Name Policy | Twitter Investment in MIT

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NewFacebookLogoFacebook Apologizes, Promises to Update ‘Real Name’ Policy (Mashable)
Facebook has apologized to users affected by its “real name” policy and said in a statement it will update its policy to allow users to identify themselves by their preferred names, even if it’s not their legal name. In the apology, issued in a lengthy statement from the company’s chief product officer, Chris Cox, the company promised to “fix the way this policy gets handled” but didn’t provide specifics on how it would do so. The Verge “We owe you a better service and a better experience using Facebook, and we’re going to fix the way this policy gets handled so everyone affected here can go back to using Facebook as you were,” said Cox in a Facebook post. The issue arose two weeks ago when Facebook cracked down on several hundred drag performers whose accounts had been reported as fake. Time Cox blamed the suspensions on company protocol for dealing with profiles that are reported as fake. Many transgender users and well-known drag queens in the San Francisco community, such as local icon Sister Roma, were among “several hundred” people to have their accounts reported, he said. (He did not name the individual who did the reporting.) Their policy has been to suspend the profile until the user submits some form of identification that matches the name on the page. The Guardian Wednesday’s meeting was the second between Facebook and the drag queen group, which also included San Francisco supervisor David Campos and other community members. They had condemned the company for asking them to use their “real names,” arguing that the policy is also unfair to transgender people, victims of domestic violence and political dissidents. NPR A protest that had been planned for Thursday in San Francisco will now be a “Victory Rally.”

Twitter Invests $10 Million in new MIT Laboratory for Social Machines (The Next Web)
Twitter has announced a new academic partnership with MIT that includes a five-year $10 million commitment to a new Laboratory for Social Machines. The university will also have access, via Twitter’s own Gnip data firm, to all public tweets ever sent.

Use JibJab’s Messenger App to Add Your Face to Shareable GIFs (SocialTimes)
To help you garner social attention and keep old friends while wasting time, the folks at JibJab created an add-your-face-to-a-random-GIF messenger app. It’s really easy to use, and of course, will be more fun if you apply cat faces to things.

After Raising $50M, Reddit Forces All Remote Workers to Relocate to San Francisco (VentureBeat)
Reddit’s executive team has big plans for the community news-sharing site’s future … which apparently includes a new requirement on where employees can live. Reddit has instituted a new policy recently that gives its remote workers an ultimatum: either relocate to San Francisco where Reddit is based or face termination.

Facebook, Instagram Help Drive Mercedes-Benz Campaign (AllFacebook)
Luxury automaker Mercedes-Benz used Facebook and Instagram to fuel promotion of its new GLA compact SUV, and the social network and its photo- and video-sharing network drove 54 percent more clicks to the model’s website than the overall control group did. On Facebook, Mercedes-Benz “highlighted the GLA’s progressive design, premium interior and versatility,” and provided links to the GLA site.

Police Tweeted Request for a Crime-Free Night So They Could Enjoy MLB Playoff Game, it Worked (BetaBeat)
To ensure that they’d be able to fully enjoy the game, the Kansas City Police took to Twitter to kindly ask that the people of their city drive safely and refrain from committing any crimes during the game. This came off as pretty hilarious, but it seems that — in addition to striking up some social media laughs and getting retweeted more than 22,000 times — it also got through to criminals.

Twitter Wants to Woo Back Third Party Developers With New ‘Fabric’ App Platform (AllTwitter)
First reported by The Information, Twitter Fabric could push Twitter into competition with Facebook, Amazon and Google, all of whom are working to better integrate their systems into mobile applications. One tool in Fabric that sounds very interesting is “Digits,” which will allow developers to sign up new users by telephone number.

Social Media and the Hong Kong Protests (The New Yorker)
Today, thousands of people in Hong Kong are protesting an election reform that would essentially mandate Beijing approval of candidates for Hong Kong’s chief executive. China has been cracking down on Internet users who demonstrate sympathy for the Hong Kong protesters, and almost a dozen people have been detained. Censors are aggressively scouring Weibo, China’s version of Twitter.

Today Kicks Off Breast Cancer Awareness Month With Great Facebook Activations (LostRemote)
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and TODAY got things started with a host of on-air and Facebook-based initiatives. To kick things off, TODAY changed their profile picture, altering the logo from its signature orange to pink (they also did this on air). Then, Joan Lunden, TODAY’s special correspondent during National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, was in the #OrangeRoom participating in a Facebook Q&A.

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