Someone must have it out for Reuters. For the second time in two weeks, the blogging platform for the news source's Web site has been hacked into and false stories have been illicitly published.
Today's sham article reported that Saudi Arabia's Foreign Minister Prince Saud al-Faisal had died, according to Reuters. The first bogus story, posted earlier this month, was about the rebel Free Syrian Army suffering setbacks in their battle against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's regime.
"Reuters did not report the false story and the post was immediately deleted," Reuters News' director of … Read more
Twitter users who want to know how many spammy or "fake" accounts are following them can check out a new service called Fake Follower Check.
Designed by a group named StatusPeople, the service looks at your Twitter account to scan a certain number of followers. In return, it tells how many of your followers are good, inactive, or fake. In my instance, it informed me that 77 percent of the accounts were good, 19 percent inactive, and 4 percent fake.
You can also get results for other Twitter accounts. Just plug in the name of the account, and … Read more
In playing catch up with President Obama's social media savvy, Republican nominee Mitt Romney might have cut some corners. A new report by Barracuda Labs shows that more than 15 percent of Romney's Twitter followers may have come from bogus accounts generated by pay-for-followers services.
"We believe most of these recent followers of Romney are not from a general Twitter population but most likely from a paid Twitter follower service," Barracuda Labs research scientist Jason Ding wrote in the report.
It's important to note, however, that it's not clear if the Romney campaign, an … Read more
YouTube thinks that maybe all those cutepuppies99 and origamiboys1981 might be ready to grow up. Google's online video platform is now giving users the option to start using their real names on its service, along with hooking up their Google Plus profile up with their YouTube channel.
"One Google-wide identity was something that proved popular with new YouTube users when we began offering it in March, so we are now extending it to existing users," YouTube software engineer John Fisher wrote in a recent blog post.
Here's more on how Fisher describes how it works:This … Read more
Curse you fake birdman! Just when it seemed like we humans might get to spread our wings and fly, it turns out the whole shebang -- videos, plans, everything -- was part of an elaborate plan/scam/hoax by filmmaker Floris Kaayk.
I wrote earlier in the week about the footage produced by Dutch mechanical engineer Jarno Smeets that looked real, if questionable, and has now been disproved and admitted as a very disappointing hoax. As Kaayk put it on his Web site:
Today, I revealed my latest project on Dutch prime-time TV show 'De wereld draait door.' In the … Read more
Some people think of scientists as quiet people in white coats secreted away in labs, rarely seeing the light of day. I know better than that.
As the daughter of a chemistry prof, I'm well aware of the humorous side of science, with its jokes about atoms, geology innuendos, and mathematics puns. Fake Science is where Nobel laureates go for an online laugh. … Read more
Chances are, you've been there: a boring meeting or social event that you're desperately seeking an escape from. The person or people you're talking with won't take the hint that you're not interested. You hope someone will call so you can have a pretend conversation about needing to be somewhere else right away. Or maybe you're wishing for a text that demands your immediate attention. Whatever the situation, you can now plan your own escape routes with this Android app. Here's how:
Step 1: Install Log Me. Once installed, run the app.
Step … Read more
Twitter accounts that were either critical or made fun of French President Nicolas Sarkozy were suspended this past week--causing some to cry censorship. Now Twitter has responded, be it indirectly, by implying that these accounts violated either its parody or spam policy.
This debacle began when Sarkozy created his first Twitter account last week and hours later announced that he was running for re-election. Shortly after, French digital-rights watchdog Internet Without Borders noticed that three accounts, @ForteFrance, @MaFranceForte, and @SarkozyCaSuffit, had been suspended and one account, @_nicolassarkozy, didn't have any new tweets since the president's announcement.
Without … Read more
The co-founder of Flickr and Hunch is out with her latest startup, called Pinwheel.
Caterina Fake just launched it in private beta, and the site--and its name--at first glance seems similar to Pinterest, one of the fastest-growing sites on the Web.
That's big money for a startup that's just rolling out and so far has no users. But investors bet on people as much as an … Read more