Posts Tagged ‘twitter’

Islamic State Militants Exploit Digital Services to Disseminate Video of Apparent Murder

August 19, 2014  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

The group calling itself Islamic State (ISIS) did something truly abominable by any humane standard today: They posted onto several Internet video services footage of a masked, black-robed man appearing to kill James Foley, a young freelance reporter who had moved to Syria to cover the unrest there and was abducted in 2012 from Aleppo. The video itself is about two minutes of President Obama discussing foreign policy with Arabic subtitles, then a forced speech by the captive Foley, the apparent murder, and some meandering threats of "bloodshed" by the murderer. I'm not going to post any links to the video here, so you can relax. Twitter was quick to respond to the breaking story, but unfortunately, much of the immediate reaction was simply reposts and screencaps of the video's most horrible sections and then immediate outrage. YouTube took action after a little while and removed the original post, but ISIS is exploiting a particular hole in the video ecosphere that has plagued law enforcement for a while: Anything that's disgusting or titillating enough gets posted, reposted and re-reposted with new tricks every few weeks to fool YouTube's automatic censors. For example, a few years ago, for a brief period, you could find any episode of a television show you wanted because uploaders had reversed the screen image; Marge vs. the Monorail was just as good flipped left to right, so for a while, illegal uploads flourished. Then YouTube got wise, and this trick no longer works. Recently, there's been a spate of video uploads that are simply a camerman filming a screen playing copyrighted content—that, too, is hard to flag, unless it's by hand, and YouTube says it deals with an average of 100 hours of new content per minute. With video content like the ISIS footage, the problem becomes even more complex, because users can upload and post information that is playing in a screencap, or is cropped or subtitled differently from the original post. Journo backlash to the post was swift—Foley was well-liked and his friends, colleagues and acquaintances were quick to push handout photos of him available at his family's website, which replaced his blog while he was missing. The site, FreeJamesFoley.org , seems to have been overloaded by traffic at this writing. More frighteningly, ISIS sympathizers tweeted bloody frames from the video at working journalists. Their accounts were quickly suspended, but their message was very clear. Indeed, plenty of accounts are still live with ISIS handles. Most journos responded with cutting remarks, but many said they were shaken by the experience. . @gladiatory48 thanks for my daily reminder that evil exists — Anthony B. L. Smith (@AnthonyBLSmith) August 19, 2014 And some services simply don't discriminate: LiveLeak has kept the video up and indeed, does a brisk business in gory images (another popular video on the site at the moment: Man Was Still Alive After He Was Hit by Train).

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Conan O’Brien on ‘Standing on the Fault Line’ of Latenight; Twitter’s Power

August 6, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

Conan O’Brien told the attendees at Variety’s TV Summit that he now realizes that he had a unique perspective on the changing face of latenight talk shows. “I was standing on a fault line,” he said in his keynote conversation with Cynthia Littleton, Variety editor-in-chief, television. On one side was “traditional, old-time viewers”; on the... Read more

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Lena Dunham and Fred Armisen on Twitter, ‘SNL’ and Working Together

July 30, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

“It is an honor just to be nominated,” insisted both Lena Dunham, the creator and star of “Girls,” and “Portlandia’s” Fred Armisen, when Variety caught up with the Emmy comedy nominees recently. While they were clearly delighted with each other’s noms, the actors said they were content to simply enjoy the attention, along with the... Read more

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Bravo ‘Singles Project’ Will Give Fans Social Feedback Loop into Dating Show (Exclusive)

July 1, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

Bravo, hoping to pull viewers closer than ever into its programming, next month is set to debut “The Singles Project,” a reality dating show that will invite fans to weigh in on each week’s events via social media — and potentially even land a guest appearance. The NBCUniversal cable network’s eight-episode “Singles Project,” slated to premiere Aug. 12... Read more

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Twitter Acquires SnappyTV to Bring More TV Content to Social Network

June 19, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

Twitter is snapping up SnappyTV, a startup whose platform lets TV broadcasters clip segments from telecasts to share them on the web. Terms of the deal weren’t disclosed. SnappyTV’s platform is already widely used by Twitter’s advertisers and media partners to share video clips on the social service, including with the Twitter Amplify ad program,... Read more

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R&B Artist Trey Songz Has a Personal Social App for His Fans

June 6, 2014  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Specs Who

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This Real-Time Game from Adventure Time’s Creator Is the Best Thing on Twitter in Years

May 21, 2014  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Just as the doubters were writing Twitter's obituary , animator and Adventure Time creator Pendleton Ward had to go and show that the network can still have a few fun surprises after all. On Tuesday, Ward tweeted a rough sketch of a prison cell, with this comment: "You wake up in a dungeon cell. What do you do." Fans who played along were rewarded with fun and laughably literal results to their suggested actions, such as "talk to the guard" or "kiss rat." Ward found time to keep the game going today, changing the name on his account to Quest Attack. For children of the '80s, it's a fun flashback to early adventure games like Zork and its graphical successors like King's Quest, all of which required you to carefully type out each command. Check out the first two days of Quest Attack below, then be sure to follow Ward on Twitter to stay up to date.

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ABC Renews ‘The Bachelor,’ ‘Shark Tank,’ ‘Funniest Home Videos’

May 9, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

ABC has given another rose to “The Bachelor,” taking the reality dating competition show with a strong Twitter following into its 19th season. The network has also renewed “Shark Tank” for a sixth season and will be taking “America’s Funniest Home Videos” for a whopping 25th season. More details to come.

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Twitter Fans Make DirecTV’s New ‘Get Rid of Cable’ Ad One of the Bleakest Yet

April 29, 2014  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

When you leave people to their own devices, they tend to get nihilistic. When they get nihilistic, they make darkly comic scripts for DirecTV. Case in point: the satellite-TV company's Twitter-sourced fable—created in the style of Grey's long-running "Cable Effects" campaign—of what happens if you don’t cut the cord. The satellite giant asked its fans to contribute a story line to the campaign by tweeting one-liners with the hashtag #GetRidofCable. The company then selected the best ideas and made a cohesive, disturbing story—read like a storybook in the video below—of getting addicted to cheese during lab experiments, going back in time and undoing your own birth ...

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How I Met Your Mother Finale Soars

April 1, 2014  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Pop quiz: In the series finale of CBS’ How I Met Your Mother , the titular mom is revealed to be: a) a MacGuffin b) a red herring c) the Yellow [Umbrella] King d) a nice, limpid-eyed dead lady e) a burlap sack full of hissing eels Boy oh boy, did Craig Thomas and Carter Bays ever piss off Twitter last night. The creators of the popular sitcom, which for nine seasons chronicled the romantic foibles of five high-functioning alcoholics , threw fans a bit of an ontological curveball with the one-hour series finale. In doing so, Thomas and Bays opened themselves, and their show, up to a whole lot of this kind of thing . Leaving aside the question of whether the HIMYM writers owed loyal viewers the ending they apparently thought they deserved—SPOILER ALERT: no one in this life owes you anything , you poopy-pants crybabies, and certainly not the people who bring you free, over-the-air television—the finale certainly out-delivered where it mattered most. According to Nielsen fast national data, the one-hour HIMYM finale was watched by 12.9 million viewers and delivered a princely 5.3 among adults 18-49, making it the show’s all-time highest-rated episode. The HIMYM finale put up big numbers across the board, serving up a series-high 5.8 rating among the 18-34 set while matching its best 25-54 delivery with a 5.4.

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