Facebook Improves App Permissions, Introduces Anonymous Logins

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19 Social Media Facts That Every Marketer Should Know (Video with cover)

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Asking the Right Question About the WhatsApp Acquisition


whatsapp acquisition

From Benedict Evans

Facebook just bought WhatsApp, paying $16bn in cash and stock and $3bn in RSUs. WhatsApp has 450m active users, of which 72% are active every day. It has just 32 NibzNotes34engineers. And its users share 500m photos a day, which is almost certainly more than Facebook.

This is interesting in all sorts of ways – it illustrates most of the key trends in consumer tech today in one deal.

First, it shows the continued determination of Facebook to be the ‘next’ Facebook. It’s striking to compare the aggressive reaction to disruption shown by Google, Facebook and other leading web companies today with how some of their predecessors a decade ago stumbled and lost their way.

Second, the winner-takes-all dynamics of social on the desktop web do not appear to apply on mobile, and if there are winner-takes-all dynamics for mobile social it’s not yet clear what they are. There are four main aspects to this:


10 Surprising Facts About the WhatsApp Acquisition


whatsapp acquisition

Watching Twitter during a big acquisition is fun. You get absolutely no work done, but the level of intelligence, snark, excitement, and sour grapes that comes across your feed makes it totally worth it.

rsz_incontentad2On the off chance you missed it, today Facebook announced the acquisition of WhatsApp in a $19 billion (BILLION) deal. The messaging app–which has enormous international usage–sold for $4 billion cash, $12 billion in Facebook shares, and $3 billion in restricted stock.

In case your math is as bad as mine, that’s 19 Instagrams. (We always thought Instagram sold too early.)

Here are some other little known facts and stats about the WhatsApp acquisition:

1. WhatsApp’s founders made about $5 billion EACH. (click to tweet)

2. Sequoia Capital, WhatsApp’s only investor, made $2.4 billion or enough to buy 17 of Tom Perkins’ yachts. (click to tweet)

3. At acquisition WhatsApp is worth 2 Staples + 2 Instagrams. (click to tweet)

4. Each employee at WhatsApp created as much value as the entire Washington Post did in 137 years. (click to tweet)

5. In one day, WhatsApp processes 4x as many messages as there are humans on the planet. (click to tweet)

6. In the last 9 months, WhatsApp added 1 million users a day. (click to tweet)

7. WhatsApp has 2.5x more active users than Twitter. (click to tweet)

8. By market cap, WhatsApp is the 200th largest company in America. (click to tweet)

9. WhatsApp is worth the same as Kroger, with 6,000x fewer employees. (click to tweet)

10. NASA’s 2014 budget: $17b. WhatsApp: $19b. (click to tweet)

Bonus fact: WhatsApp is worth more than Southwest, Coach, Chipotle, News Corp, Under Armor, Dr. Pepper & Tiffany. (click to tweet)

Branch Sells to Facebook for “Around” $15 Million

facebook buys branch

Want to know how quiet your critics?

Well, you buy them up of course!

This morning The Verge broke the story that Facebook is acquiring New York-based startup Branch for $15 million. While early reports indicated that the Branch team expected to be building out their product at Facebook, a Techcrunch update clarified that a Facebook rep says the acquisition is for talent only.

Branch is (was?) a link-sharing service that allowed you to have conversations about anything on the Internet, then publish those conversations on a blog or website. Most recently it launched Potluck, an iPhone app that allowed you to discover news bites and talk about them with friends in-app.

Last year, Branch CEO Josh Miller wrote a popular post on Medium calling Facebook an “irreversibly bad brand.” He pointed to the fact that his teenage sister makes a point to visit the social network as little as possible. Our CEO Nick Tippmann had a similar experience with younger siblings, where he was informed that “Facebook is for old people.

A few weeks ago, however, Miller wrote that he was “bullish on Facebook.” Still, bullish or not, the post offered some–ahem–healthy criticisms of his future employer on things they could do to improve the News Feed. There’s little doubt, given the length of time it takes to make an acquisition, that Miller wrote the more recent post while in talks with the social network.

Fair enough. Even after a $2 million raise, Miller and his cofounders are most likely experiencing their first day as millionaires today, and they have nice jobs at Facebook to add to the deal.

Branch isn’t the only startup trying to disrupt the way we consume news. Quibb is another popular (if exclusive) service that allows industry professionals to share links and discuss them. And then, of course, there’s always Twitter, which seems to work well for everyone. Branch is hoping to bring Facebook back to the news game.

Perhaps we’ll be seeing fewer cat memes in 2014?


The “Must-Attend Conference for Entrepreneurs” Everywhere Else Tennessee is headed back to Memphis this Spring. We’re releasing the first 50 tickets for 50% off exclusively to our newsletter subscribers on Jan 14th. Don’t miss your shot by signing up here!

What Facebook’s Latest Changes Mean For Your Startup

Facebook is at it again.

Have you heard about the latest updates that affect business business Pages? If you manage a business Page, you’ll want to know about them.

Below, I’ve outlined the biggest changes that will impact business owners on Facebook and shared some resources to further explore each:

Objective-Based Ad Creation

Facebook has simplified their advertising options. They continue to work on streamlining their ad creation process. Recently, Facebook announced that the process of building ads has been re-thought and re-created to focus on advertisers objectives.

According to Inside Facebook, the new ad flow will allow advertisers to create a Facebook advertisement based on the following common objectives:

• Clicks to Website
• Website Conversions
• Page Post Engagement
• Page Likes
• App Installs
• App Engagement
• In-store Offer claims
• Event Responses

Image from Inside Facebook

Once a business has decided on an objective and built an ad, Facebook will place the ads where they perform best. Advertisers will no longer have to choose between the right-hand side bar or the newsfeed: Facebook will decide.

According to Jon Loomer, you can toggle back and forth between the new ad units and old ad units if you’re looking for some more control over your ads.  Facebook has also given an updated look to the ads manager to support this change.

Facebook Ad Manager

Updates to Facebook Insights

Earlier this year Facebook did a complete overhaul of their Insights. Recently they’ve started rolling out some enhancements based on user feedback. Some of the updates include the “People talking about this” metric splitting into Page Likes, People engaged (unique users who have clicked on, liked, commented on, or shared posts), Page Tags and Mentions, Page Check-ins and other interactions with Pages. Facebook also changed the name of the virality metric to “Engagement rate” and added clicks to the measurement.

These are just a few of the changes. To learn more about all of the changes, check out this article from AllFacebook.

 Facebook Insights Update

Facebook Alerts Users When Messages Are Bound for Recipients “Other” Folders

Awhile back, Facebook made it so that when you send a private message to other users or brands that you are not connected with, message would go into an “Other” folder, instead of that user’s/brand’s inbox. The change was a little confusing. It was hard to tell where your message went and if the user/brand ever saw it. Now, you are fully warned when your private message will land in a user’s or brand’s “Other” folder.

Facebook Message Others

Graph Search Now Includes Posts and Status Updates

At the end of September, Facebook updated Graph Search’s capabilities to make posts and status updates searchable. This new feature allows you to search for status updates, photo captions, check-ins and comments, and to find the things that were shared with you. According to Facebook, you can search for posts you want to see again, like “Posts I commented on” or “My posts from last year.”

Graph Search

Graph Search has always been set up so that you are only able to see content that has already been shared with you and public posts. If you haven’t updated your privacy settings since Graph Search was released, you may want to check in and freshen up on the options you have chosen. 

Have you noticed any other updates to your Facebook Pages lately?

A version of this post originally appeared on the author’s blog. Images are used with permission from AllFacebook and Inside Facebook.

Jim Belosic is the co-founder and CEO of Pancake Laboratories, a software company based in Reno, Nev. The company is best known for its flagship product, ShortStack, software that’s designed to help small business owners and designers create custom apps that harness the power of social media. ShortStack recently celebrated its second birthday; Pancake Laboratories has several new software products slated for release in 2013.

The Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) is an invite-only organization comprised of the world’s most promising young entrepreneurs. In partnership with Citi, the YEC recently launched #StartupLab, a free virtual mentorship program that helps millions of entrepreneurs start and grow businesses via live video chats, an expert content library and email lessons.

Palestinian Hacker Posts To Mark Zuckerberg’s Wall, Won’t Get $500 Reward

Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook Hack

(image: dailymail.co.uk)


The world’s biggest social network has a long standing policy of giving people who find and report security vulnerabilities in their network with a $500 bounty. There is a process set up where “white hat” hackers and other users can turn in their findings. Once the security team investigates and finds the breach, Facebook gives the reporter $500. That’s not going to be the case for Palestinian “security specialist” Khalil Shreateh.

The Daily Mail reports that Shreateh discovered a vulnerability in Facbeook that allowed anyone to post a message on the Facebook wall of any other user regardless of that user’s privacy settings. While it’s not as bad as hacking someone’s account and posting as that person, it could leave more high profile Facebook users, and even regular Facbeook users feeling vulnerable. Unlike LinkedIn, Google+, and Twitter, many people turn to Facebook for family communications and other networking with people they actually know.

When Shreateh discovered this breach, he reported it. Unfortunately either the Facbeook security team didn’t feel it was a worthy breach, or they just felt like ignoring it. Facebook eventually told him it wasn’t a bug.

So, Shreateh found a friend of Mark Zuckerberg’s, fellow Harvard alum Sarah Goodin. Goodin and Shreateh have no connection whatsoever, yet Shreateh was able to post on her wall.

When this still wasn’t good enough Shreateh used the same trick and posted on Zuckerberg’s wall.

Sorry for breaking your privacy,’ he wrote in a post to Zuckerberg. ‘I had no other choice…after all the reports I sent to Facebook team.’

That post was immediately removed, and Facebook security experts patched up the vulnerability that Shreateh had originally reported, hoping to earn the $500.

In a Hacker News post, Facebook Security Team member Matt Jones posted that the bug had been fixed. He also explained why Shreateh wouldn’t receive the bounty.

‘In order to qualify for a payout you must “make a good faith effort to avoid privacy violations” and “use a test account instead of a real account when investigating bugs,”’ Jones wrote.

Facebook said that Shreateh violated the privacy of both Goodin and Zuckerberg. Jones was quick to point out that Shreateh could receive the bounty for reporting future bugs.


Facebook Acquires Pittsburgh Speech Recognition And Translation Startup

Jibbigo, Pittsburgh Startup, Facebook, AcquisitionOn Monday morning Tom Stocky, Director of Product Management at Facebook, announced that the social networking giant had acquired Mobile Technologies, the Pittsburgh startup behind the app Jibbigo.

Jibbigo is an app with the kind of technology you’d think the NSA would be after. The app allows you to record someone talking in a foreign language and translates the voice snippet for you in both text and spoken word in the language selected. This is the kind of technology that everyone has wished they had at one time or another. You know, you’re riding the subway and you hear a loud argument in another language? Jibbigo is perfect for that.

Now obviously Facebook is going to use this technology for translating and speech recognition, but its specific uses have yet to be announced. What Stocky did say, by Facebook post of course, was “I’m excited to announce that we’ve agreed to acquire Mobile Technologies, a company with an amazing team that’s behind some of the world’s leading speech recognition and machine translation technology.”

Facebook already integrates Bing’s translation technology into news feeds and posts. Anthony Sarvas at ITProPortal speculates that they could use the technology for improving their mobile ad network and expanding a mobile ad campaigns reach.

The Pittsburgh-based team will relocate to Facebook’s Menlo Park headquarters. Terms of the deal were, of course, not disclosed.

“With this deal we will welcome some of the industry’s most talented people to our engineering teams in Menlo Park, California,” Stocky said in the Facebook post.

Find out more about Jibbigo here.



Bill Harris, Former CEO Of PayPal And Intuit To Speak On “Adult Supervision” At Everywhereelse.co The Startup Conference

Bill Harris, Personal Capital, Intuit, Paypal, Facebook, everywherelse.co the startup conference

Bill Harris CEO of Personal Capital and Former CEO of Paypal and Intuit to speak at everywhereelse.co (photo: salon.com)

Everywhereelse.co The Startup Conference has quickly become the biggest starutp conference in the United States. The unique thing about everywhereelse.co is that it’s a celebration of startups outside Silicon Valley with information, and education for startups facing a similar set of challenges, being from outside the valley.

By now you’ve heard that our speaker lineup is one of the best in the country including Scott Case, Pat Riley, Tracy Myers, several managing directors from startup accelerators across the country, founders from some of the best accelerators across the country like Techstars, YC, and MassChallenge and many more.

Today we’re pleased to announce that veteran “parental supervision” CEO Bill Harris will speak at everywhereelse.co The Startup Conference on Monday morning.

Harris is the CEO of Personal Capital, his own startup that’s already raised $25 million in venture capital, prior to that he has had a successful career in media, finance and entrepreneurism. Harris has twice been brought into young companies to be CEO and returned the companies to their founders in incredible positions.

Harris was brought into Paypal as it’s first CEO back in the late 90’s and prepared it for a $100 million dollar investment, eventually leading to the acquisition by eBay who owns it today. He also served as CEO at Intuit after merging ChipSoft into Intuit. Harris serves an advisor to some of the Facebook billionaires and has also taken a board or advisory role with several other successful companies.

Harris will speak about his current company Personal Capital. He will also talk about the real need by some startup founders to hire a CEO that is more seasoned than themselves. Eric Schmidt, the current Executive Chairman of Google, was hired as CEO of Google to lead Sergey Brin and Larry Page to the point where they could take back the company they founded.

Many credit Harris with bringing together Confinity and it’s founders Max Levchin, Peter Thiel, Luke Nosek and Ken Howery with X.com and Elon Musk to actually form the company we know as Paypal.

Attendees and startups in the everywhereelse.co startup village will benefit from hearing Harris speak on all things startup and about his experiences advising, mentoring and helping some of the biggest startup founders in the world. It’s an amazing victory for startups “everywhere else” to have the opportunity to hear someone  of Harris’ caliber and experience at a conference.

Nearly 2000 people from across the country and around the globe, have already purchased attendee tickets for everywhereelse.co the startup conference. The are still a handful of tickets left. There are 135 startups in the Startup Village and there are just 10 startup village booths left. More info can be found at everywhereelse.co tickets can be purchased below.


Former Facebook Chief Invests In Nashville Startup Streamweaver


Nashville startup, Streamweaver launched in September. The company offers a new, more socially integrated video experience.

According to TechCrunch, Streamweaver has actually found a way to make video more social. This is achieved by not only sharing videos with friends, and tagging video recordings, but in playback StreamWeaver allows for split screen. This way friends at the same event can watch their friends videos in a more complete, multiscreen display.

Early on Streamweaver was able to raise $2.6 million dollars locally from Tennessee Community Ventures and Mountain Group Capital according to the Tennessean. Both firms are part of the TNInvestco program.

Now they’ve raised a $1.3 million dollar Series A round that was led by former Facebook Privacy head Chris Kelly. Kelly joined the social giant in 2005 when there were only about 25 employees. He left in 2010 and began investing in startups. Kelly also recently invested in video startup GoDigital that produces documentaries.

“As mobile users, we all love to share content and connect with others on the go … and I’ve seen a lot of social startups,” Kelly told TechCrunch, “but Streamweaver is making a difference in how we collaborate with each other and collectively create interactive content.”

You can tryout Streamweaver here

Facebook Passwords Protected In California And Illinois

Facebook, Privacy, Password Protection, ACLULast March one of the hottest issues involving privacy and security online was in regard to employers. One of the biggest stories was about a correctional officer in Maryland named Robert Collins who had been laid off from his job in 2010. Unlike many lay-offs Collins was actually asked to come back into work, however before he could do that there was one stipulation. Collins needed to give up, not just his Facebook user id, but his password as well.

Collins had been out of work for a while and needed the money so he had no choice but to give up his Facebook login credentials.He said that the employer wanted to make sure he wasn’t into any “gang activity” (because gangs are planning their activities on Facebook and all).

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) quickly got involved in Collins case and many others that were popping up across the country. Some employers were making Facebook and other social media credentials a stipulation of employment and others were making it a stipulation of continued employment.

Maryland lawmakers quickly rushed a piece of legislation that outlaws employers from seeking employee or prospective employee’s login credentials for any personal service.

Now California and Illinois have both jumped on the login protection bandwagon, and rightfully so. New laws in both states, that went into effect January 1st 2013, makes it illegal for employers to demand access to their workers protected Facebook accounts.  The laws passed in both states protect employees privacy and passwords for many different social networks and not just Facebook.

What on earth is everywhereelse.co?

Teen Thinks “Facebook is for Old People” and “Snapchat is Getting Boring”

Facebook Twitter Instagram SnapchatThis post may be a little outside of our mission here at Nibletz to be “The Voice of Startups Everywhere Else” but after reading Josh Miller’s, founder of BranchTenth Grade Tech Trends the conversation seems appropriate.

Over the holidays I was lucky enough to head back to my hometown in Indiana to spend plenty of quality time with my younger siblings.

My siblings are your typical, Midwestern middle school and high schoolers. One Direction and Taylor Swift dominate their Pandora while interacting with friends is priority number one.

My two sisters are 13 and 16 respectively and my brother is an 18 year old senior. My youngest sister, 10, would cry if I didn’t mention her but her thoughts are not discussed. Although it should be noted her and her friends are already addicted to Instagram, using my parents’ phones to check it whenever she gets the chance.

I asked the older three a wide range of questions about their usage of social media and the overall sediment amongst theirs peers of the various networks.

What I heard was a bit of a shock.


The biggest surprise had to come when I asked my 13 year old sister if she used Facebook? “No, it’s for old people and it’s stupid! Nobody has it anymore.” (yes, I realize you’re supposed to be 13 to have a Facebook account but the majority of her friends we’re on it well before). While I laughed at her choice of words, my jaw almost hit the floor. Is it true? Has Facebook become so “uncool” that they had all already left?

I heard similar responses when I asked the other two. My brother had recently deleted his account but said that many of his friends hadn’t because, “their whole high school career is on there.” It seems my brother’s friends, who mostly adopted the service about four years ago, currently use it to look back at the good times they’ve had, not to post new content.


I got a very difference response when I asked them about Instagram. Each uses it everyday. It has completely replace Facebook as their default photo service.

This echoes Josh’s takeaway that Facebook was smart to buy Instagram.


But what about Twitter? Are the kids as hooked as you and me? It’s been pointed out before that Twitter is not a mainstream technology and Josh’s sister said, “I guess a few kids use it.”

I found a little different response. Both my brother and 16 year old sister, along with “most” of their friends, check it daily (but less than Instagram). However, It’s primary function for them is to broadcast things that make them look funny or cool and to find out what their friends are doing, not to find links and join interesting conversations.

The 16 year old said her friends are really into sharing quotes and other things to get them more retweets and followers. As for the youngest, “None of my friends use it.” The 16 year old was relatively new to the service while my brother had been on it for a few years. This lead me to believe Twitter is adopted more as they get older.


Now it was time to ask about Snapchat. Is it really a sexting app?

Probably not the most appropriate conversation to have with your little sisters (let alone get honest responses) but I drilled my brother on it. He said, “Yeah, I’ve heard some people use it for that but it’s definitely not its main purpose.”

All of them proclaimed that it was used to, “share funny pics with close friends that are too ugly or ridiculous for Instagram.” As for their frequency of usage, “basically everyday.”

The most insightful takeaway regarding Snapchat came from my 16 year old sister. “I’ve used it for a while now but it’s getting boring. I feel like I have to respond to my friends though.”

This makes me wonder, is Snapchat a fad? More of a viral service that goes out of vogue after receiving the 1000th picture of your friend pulling their cheeks apart in the mirror?


Teens are “so over” Facebook. Instagram is now the de facto photo sharing app. Twitter has their foot in the door. Snapchat isn’t just for sexting.

One final point is age seems to be the largest determinate in how teens use these networks and for the most part not geography or cliques

While these observations are clearly anecdotal and are by no means meant to be scientific (I can hear the comments on Hacker News now), it does provide another interesting look at how teens are currently using the world’s largest and fastest growing social networks.

Let me know what you think? Does this go along with what you’ve seen or is my family an anomaly?

Facebook’s Sandberg And Google’s Schmidt Being Considered For Cabinet Position?

Facebook,Google, Eric Schmidt, Sheryl Sandberg, Barack Obama, TreasuryNow that the votes have been counted and Barack Obama has been elected to a second term as President Of The United States, his administration is preparing to shuffle the cabinet around.

While many are expecting Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, to step down from her post to run for President in 2016, another post that needs to be filled immediately is Secretary of The Treasury. Politico reported on Thursday that while Obama has had a very stable cabinet in his first term, almost the entire cabinet could be replaced in this second term.

Rumors have been running rampant about Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner. There’s been wide spread speculation that President Obama has been looking at Google’s Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt for the Treasury position going back to July of 2011.

While insiders feel that White House Chief of Staff Jack Lew is a shoe in for the post at Treasury, counselor to the President Pete Rouse has been vetting Fortune 500 CEO’s for the Treasury position for the past few months.

This time around, Eric Schmidt is on the short list of possibilities as is Facebook CFO Sheryl Sandberg. Sandberg once served as Treasury Chief of Staff under Larry Summers and according to Politico, “Obama clearly likes her”.

One of Mitt Romney’s strengths in the 2012 election was his experience running big business at Bain Capital. It seems that Obama may give the nod to Sandberg or Schmidt, both of whom have the experience running major Fortune 500 companies, that could be pivotal over the next 4 years in building our economy back up.


More tech news from nibletz.com

Will we see you “everywhere else”

Indianapolis Public Startup Angie’s List Sees Stock Drop 16%

Publicly traded tech startups haven’t been doing very well lately. Groupon, and Zynga have both dropped more than 70% since their initial public offerings earlier this year. The world has been watching the public story of Facebook as well. The largest social network in the world debuted at $38 dollars a share and has since dropped 46%. Right now is a tricky time for tech startups turned public companies.

For Angie’s list, the story hasn’t been much better. Except for the fact that Angie’s list debuted much lower than Groupon, Zynga or Facebook, they’ve still seen a steady decline since going public. Tuesday, Angie’s list stock closed at $11.17, which was below their IPO price of $13. The 16% drop on Tuesday was the single biggest decline for the Indianapolis based startup since they debuted on the stock market 9 months ago.

Angie’s list is a marketplace for people to vet and find service workers. Carpenters, babysitters, plumbers and more can be found on the site. The Angie’s list community is filled with reviews from every service sector possible. Companies can’t pay to be on the list it’s all referral/review based and there are no anonymous accounts.

Angie’s list also incorporates discounts of up to 70% off from the service providers found on the site. The company was founded in 1995 by Angie Hicks and William Oesterle and has remained in Indianapolis since then.

Angie’s List reported a loss of $37 million on revenues of $68 million during the first half of 2012.

Source: Yahoo