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Twitter and Firefox and Lauer, oh my!

Welcome to this week’s Weekly Wrap-Up, a Serendipit exclusive that fills you in on what’s news in the world of the internet. We gave away a little bit more than usual from the title, but we think it was worth it – this week was a good one! There was plenty of drama in this news this week, though most of it was circulating one touchy topic.  Read on for more info; we’ll clue you in on the subjects of the post’s title, and more!

1. Twitter’s New Ad Model

Over the last several months, you have no doubt noticed the changes in Twitter’s advertising options.  In fact, the change comes from their existence.  When Twitter first started, there was absolutely no talk of money – it was critical to keep all obvious “business” out of view of users.  This allowed Twitter to grow very, very rapidly with new users constantly wanting to share their 140-character thought.  However, in September, Twitter announced the implementation of the dreaded advertisements… but not in a deal-breaking way.  Twitter still remains “traditional” advertisement-free.  Instead, they implemented organic advertising, much like is seen on Facebook.  Accounts can pay to sponsor “top tweets” and “trending topics” – see below for a couple examples.  These practices have mixed reviews.  Most believe that a marketer’s best bet is to skip out on these paid advertisements unless you are absolutely sure of your audience.   At Serendipit, we haven’t jumped into it quite yet… but we’re interested to watch it evolve.

2. White House Teams Up With Monster

Though it is not new for the current White House staff to use social media to reach out to the public (many think Obama’s Facebook page helped him get elected), we found this one rather interesting.  The White House is teaming up with Monster, and allowing Facebook users to ask questions about the country’s current unemployment situation via Monster’s Facebook page.  The question period lasts all week, and the most-desired questions will be answered, videotaped, and posted online.

3. Firefox Plug-in Prevents Drunk Social Networking

Remember that email you sent to your ex last week at 2am?  Or what about the Facebook status you probably shouldn’t have posted about your smelly coworker after a few martinis? Well, Firefox has a solution! A new plug-in is meant to prevent intoxicated virtual mistakes.  During pre-set hours, Firefox will require you to solve challenging puzzles before accessing sites like Gmail or Facebook.  That way next time, the puzzle will frustrate you so much that bed might sound like a better solution than pressing send.

4. The Lauer Debacle

Looking at Twitter, Facebook Mentions, or Google Trends can tell you rather quickly that this was the big one this week.  Every day, it seemed that Lauer was trending on each of these sites.  Why? Well, in case you missed it, he stirred up all kinds of drama this week.  It started in an interview with former president George W. Bush.  Bush stated that in his 8 years of presidency, his worst moment was Kanye West’s public assertion that “Bush doesn’t care about black people”, following the trauma of Hurricane Katrina.  Bush’s statement alone blew up Twitter, with the viewers of the Today Show interview tweeting (and retweeting) the statement.  To further the drama, this led Kanye to endure a Lauer interview himself.  In his interview, he did retract his accusation of Bush’s racism, but was unable to hold back some hostility towards Lauer.  In fact, immediately after the interview, Kanye did some tweeting of his own.  Kanye deleted the harshest of the tweets, but the remainder can still be seen at It seems to be over for now, and Kanye and Bush have allegedly made up… but we’ll see how long that lasts!

That’s all for now, followers. Now, we’re off to a Serendipit company bowling tournament – any bets as to who will win?!


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