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Links for April 17th 2009 through April 21st 2009:
- Courts throw Facebook at digital navel gazers [WA Today] – “Const Robert Hogan claimed he was just playing around outside a nightclub when an off-duty military commando bit his face so hard that he drew blood and a five-centimetre gash. A judge ultimately punished his assailant with a suspended jail sentence but not before Constable Hogan’s private life was tendered to court as evidence, courtesy of his Facebook site. … These digital collections are so convincing to a jury, fed a constant diet of television forensics, that a Sydney University law professor, Mark Findlay, believes it is leading to cases being increasingly won on circumstantial evidence. “You are going to see a trend in trials away from oral evidence to documentary trials,” Professor Findlay said. Such a trend was concerning because documentary evidence was easier to fabricate than that provided by a witness, he said. Juries were also less likely to doubt the quality of the information. For example, they do not doubt that a text belongs to the owner of the mobile phone.”
- Telstra cracks down on Twitter, Facebook mischief [ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)] – “Telstra is the first major Australian company to tell its employees how to behave on social media like Twitter, Facebook and Myspace …. there’s a decidedly old-fashioned flavour to its “3 Rs” document. It’s not reading, writing and arithmetic in this case though – Telstra employees are implored to observe responsibility, respect and representation. The guidelines tell employees who are using social media for personal use – a far more common and risky situation for the company – to include a disclaimer if they talk about Telstra. They say if someone plans to comment regularly about the company then they should post a permanent disclaimer but if they post infrequently they should use one on a case-by-case basis. A disclaimer would be similar to those attached to company emails, with words to the effect of “the views in this post are my own and do not necessarily reflect those of Telstra”. The guidelines are backed up with the threat of disciplinary action.”
- With Oprah Onboard, Twitter Grows [NYTimes.com] – “One small message from Oprah, one giant leap for Twitter. On Friday morning, Twitter received the blessing of Oprah Winfrey, one of Middle America’s most influential tastemakers, when Ms. Winfrey tapped out her inaugural message using the microblogging service as the cameras of her talk show cameras rolled. “HI TWITTERS,” Ms. Winfrey wrote, using all capital letters in the Internet equivalent of shouting. “THANK YOU FOR A WARM WELCOME. FEELING REALLY 21st CENTURY.”” (Good to see Shaq calling her out for using caps! And how can Twitter remain kewl now? :P)
- House, FB: A Consideration of Convergence Marketing [Jacqueline Vickery / Flow 9.11] – Fascinating look at how the death of a character on House in the US was followed by a seemingly real commemoration page on Facebook. After a thoughtful article, Vickery notes: “Once users were on Facebook however, Fox was provided with an instant demographic snapshot of House viewers – their gender, age, location, sexuality, and probably even their political and religious affiliations (since all of this information is privileged as “basic demographics” at the top of a Facebook profile). It is important to note that this snapshot is of course limiting and limited (by those with computers, internet access, and maybe a higher level of fan motivation), but nonetheless extremely valuable to Fox.”
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