Posts tagged Twitter

UK tourist deny entry to US because of his tweets

OK, if you are visiting US soon, becareful of what you post on Twitter. (I guess the same applies to Facebook, Blog and other social network) Cause the over paranoid Department of Homeland Security are monitoring the social network for “potential threats” and I guess they don’t really know how Social Media works.

Leigh Van Bryan and his friend Emily Bunting were handcuffed and kept under armed guard in a cell with Mexican drug dealers for 12 hours after landing in Los Angeles. The Department of Homeland Security flagged him as a potential threat after discovering 2 tweets from him prior to his visit to US. They were denied entry and put on a flight back to UK the next day.

You might be wondering, what dangerous stuff did he tweet before his journey. Well, the tweets are:

Free this week, for quick gossip/prep before I go and destroy America?

3 weeks today, we’re totally in LA pissing people off on Hollywood Blvd and diggin’ Marilyn Monroe up!

And I’m not even surprised that someone at Department of Homeland Security took those tweet seriously. This is not the first time we are seeing this and this will not be the last time we are going to see this. In 2010, a UK guy was fined £1,000 by magistrates court for Tweeting “Crap! Robin Hood airport is closed. You’ve got a week and a bit to get your shit together otherwise I’m blowing the airport sky high!!”

I seriously think that all these Government agencies should employ people who understand how social media works to monitor the social networks. Actually, you don’t really need social media savvy people. You just need people with common sense. A terrorist will not tweet about his plan to destroy a country and digging someone’s grave openly in the public.

Use your brains people…..

And you know what’s the most funny thing about this entire incident? The Federal agents searching the guy’s suitcase to look for spades and shovels. Dudes, Marilyn Monroe was interred in a crypt at Westwood Village Memorial Park Cemetery. There is nothing to dig.

Twitter to delete tweets if countries request it

Twitter announced recently that it will delete tweets if countries request it. This move sparked outcry and protest from Twitter users. A growing number of Twitter users are organising a #TwitterBlackout on 28 January (US Time I supposed).

But is Twitter turning evil? Is this a bad move? Or are we barking at the wrong tree?

Firstly, Twitter has been censoring illegal Tweets since day one. This is nothing new. In the past, when Twitter remove a tweet due to complaints, it will have to remove the tweet entirely from Twitter. From now on, Twitter has the ability to only remove the Tweet in countries that requested for it to be taken down. So only Twitter users in that country will be censored. The rest of the world can still see that tweet. This, I feel, is much better than simply removing the tweet entirely.

And why is Twitter doing this? Well, whenever Twitter gets a request from a Government to remove a tweet, it has 2 options. Either comply with the take down notice or have Twitter blocked entirely in the country. So to prevent itself from being blocked entirely, Twitter will remove the tweet just for that country. And they are doing it in a very open and transparent way. If users are located in a country where a Tweet or account has been withheld and they try to view it, they will see a alert box that says “Tweet withheld” or “@Username withheld” in place of the affected Tweet or account.

I think this is a good move. Why is everyone blaming Twitter for doing this? If you want to blame, blame the government for forcing Twitter to censor you. Besides, there are ways to get around the censorship.

So relax everyone. The Tweets will still flow. In fact, with this new policy, maybe China will consider allowing Twitter back the country again.

“Retweet” is now in the Concise Oxford Dictionary. Woot!

“Retweet” made it into the Concise Oxford Dictionary recently. Woot! (So is the word “Woot”)

400 new words were added to the 12th edition of the Concise Oxford English Dictionary. Among the 400 words are tech-centric terms like “Retweet“, “Woot“, “Textspeak“, “Sexting” and “Cyberbullying“.

retweet: (on the social networking service Twitter) repost or forward (a message posted by another user)

woot: exclamation. informal (especially in electronic communication) used to express elation, enthusiasm, or triumph

But I don’t know if it is ok for you to use the word “Woot” in your GEC O level English Composition. So use it at your own risk. Haha.

PS: While the tech folks celebrate the inclusion of words like “Retweet” and “Woot” in the Concise Oxford Dictionary, the fashion folks must be moaning at the inclusion “Mankini“. For those who don’t know what’s a Mankini, Google it at your own risk.

Twitter Trending Topics for Singapore

OK, I know I’m very late on this news. Twitter added more countries and cities to the Trending Topics back in November last year and Singapore was one of them. How could I have missed that?

Trending Topic is pretty useful for finding out what’s happening. Although most of the time it is filled with nonsense hashtag meme, there are time also time when Trending Topics reflect the latest breaking news. It is also good for finding out what event is happening. But for a country like Singapore, it is quite hard to get a local breaking news or events on the Worldwide trending topics.

Which is why a Singapore Trending Topic list is good news for us. Now it’s easier to discover what’s happening in Singapore.

But here’s the thing…. most of the Singapore Trending Topic are entertainment news related. To be exact, mostly kpop related. This could be because of the large number of local Twitter users being Kpop fans. A lot of Kpop celebrities use Twitter to communicate with their fans.

But that could also be because there isn’t much event happening in Singapore lately. Wait till we have events like Barcamp Singapore. Or during the election period. I’m pretty sure tthe Twitter Trending Topics will be put into better use.

Twitter for BlackBerry

RIM recently released their Official Twitter Application for Open Beta. RIM has been working closely with Twitter to develop this App. I’ve been trying it out for almost a month now when it is still under closed beta.

Basically, if you have used a Twitter Client before, the Twitter for BlackBerry app won’t be a stranger to you. Interface is pretty straight forward with all the options available on the top of the screen. You can see your own timeline, mention, DM and list. If there is a Twitpic on the Tweet, it will show you a small thumbnail of the picture before you click on it. You can also view the trend or search either for people or words. Pretty standard thing that you find on most Twitter apps.

What makes the Twitter for BlackBerry application different from others is the integration with BlackBerry services. For example, you can easily Twitpic a photo straight from your photo gallery. Or share a URL straight from your browser.

Mentions and DM will also appear on your BlackBerry Messages where you can reply to DM directly on the BlackBerry Messages without opening the Twitter Application. Cool.

It is worth noting that the Official Twitter Application for BlackBerry uses some private APIs on the RIM platform that third-party developers does not have access to. While this move is certainly good for the consumers, developers who have been making Twitter clients for BlackBerry like UberTwitter is most likely unhappy about it. Afterall, UberTwitter is perhaps the best Twitter application for BlackBerry before the official Twitter for BlackBerry came along.

If you are a BlackBerry and Twitter user, I highly recommend you try out the Twitter for BlackBerry application by RIM. BlackBerry users can download the Twitter for BlackBerry application through App World now.