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Facebook now have what they call 
Facebook stories and yes it is exactly whatit sounds like-- a sorta Snapchat ripoff.

An update on the iPhone and Android available beginning today will let you experience the kind of ephemeral content sharing you’re used to seeing in Snapchat right inside your Facebook app.

The update will be available worldwide shortly and will bring three new features to Facebook users, namely; a new feed of ephemeral stories at the top of the News feed, a private messaging feature called Direct, and a redesigned in-app camera that makes all the new stories possible.

According to the 
product manager for Facebook stories Connor Hayes, “The way people create content is changing to be from text to photos and videos,

“This is, in turn, changing the way they’re sharing with one another and interacting online. This is something that Snapchat has really pioneered.” he said.

The new Facebook stories basically the way Snapchat works with images that disappear after 24 hours and the option of filters, text, and other similar gimmicks.

To start a story, you have to swipe right on the News Feed or tap the camera in the top-left corner of the app. Once your creation is done, you can share it with all your friends or just a few friends you choose. 

President Donald Trump has not had the easiest time being President of the United States, what with people not liking him and all. He cemented himself in the hall of fame of all things hated when he implemented what is being called a Muslim ban.

What this means is that immigrants from 7 nations (Islamic nations) would be restricted severely from entering into the country. 
The tech industry have been quick to fight this seeing as a lot of tech talent that make the companies the behemoths they are today is gotten from some of these nations. As many as 97 companies including some of the biggest names in tech have banded together to file a legal brief in opposition of Trump’s executive order on immigration.

In an amicus brief filed late on Sunday in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, 97 companies clearly stated their opposition to Trump’s controversial executive order, which bars refugees and valid visa holders from seven Muslim countries from entering the United States. A US District judge temporarily lifted the immigration ban late on Friday night, but Trump and his staffers have already stated their intention to fight the judge’s decision.
If you're curious as to which companies are leading the charge, you can check them out below (Look out for Apple, Facebook and Netflix)


1. AdRoll, Inc.
2. Aeris Communications, Inc.
3. Airbnb, Inc.
4. AltSchool, PBC
5. Ancestry.com, LLC
6. Appboy, Inc.
7. Apple Inc.
8. AppNexus Inc.
9. Asana, Inc.
10. Atlassian Corp Plc
11. Autodesk, Inc.
12. Automattic Inc.
13. Box, Inc.
14. Brightcove Inc.
15. Brit + Co
16. CareZone Inc.
17. Castlight Health
18. Checkr, Inc.
19. Chobani, LLC
20. Citrix Systems, Inc.
21. Cloudera, Inc.
22. Cloudflare, Inc.
23. Copia Institute
24. DocuSign, Inc.
25. DoorDash, Inc.
26. Dropbox, Inc.
27. Dynatrace LLC
28. eBay Inc.
29. Engine Advocacy
30. Etsy Inc.
31. Facebook, Inc.
32. Fastly, Inc.
33. Flipboard, Inc.
34. Foursquare Labs, Inc.
35. Fuze, Inc.
36. General Assembly
37. GitHub
38. Glassdoor, Inc.
39. Google Inc.
40. GoPro, Inc.
41. Harmonic Inc.
42. Hipmunk, Inc.
43. Indiegogo, Inc.
44. Intel Corporation
45. JAND, Inc. d/b/a Warby Parker
46. Kargo Global, Inc.
47. Kickstarter, PBC
49. Knotel
50. Levi Strauss & Co.
51. LinkedIn Corporation
52. Lithium Technologies, Inc.
53. Lyft, Inc.
54. Mapbox, Inc.
55. Maplebear Inc. d/b/a Instacart
56. Marin Software Incorporated
57. Medallia, Inc.
58. A Medium Corporation
59. Meetup, Inc.
60. Microsoft Corporation
61. Motivate International Inc.
62. Mozilla Corporation
63. Netflix, Inc.
64. NETGEAR, Inc.
65. NewsCred, Inc.
66. Patreon, Inc.
67. PayPal Holdings, Inc.
68. Pinterest, Inc.
69. Quora, Inc.
70. Reddit, Inc.
71. Rocket Fuel Inc.
72. SaaStr Inc.
73. Salesforce.com, Inc.
74. Scopely, Inc.
75. Shutterstock, Inc.
76. Snap Inc.
77. Spokeo, Inc.
78. Spotify USA Inc.
79. Square, Inc.
80. Squarespace, Inc.
81. Strava, Inc.
82. Stripe, Inc.
83. SurveyMonkey Inc.
84. TaskRabbit, Inc
85. Tech:NYC
86. Thumbtack, Inc.
87. Turn Inc.
88. Twilio Inc.
89. Twitter Inc.
90. Turn Inc.
91. Uber Technologies, Inc.
92. Via
93. Wikimedia Foundation, Inc.
94. Workday
95. Y Combinator Management, LLC
96. Yelp Inc.
97. Zynga Inc.

Whatsapp is secure, or at least that's what we thought until a new revelation came to light which showed that the Facebook-owned chat medium has a security backdoor that can allow Mark Zuckerberg's staff to intercept and read encrypted WhatsApp messages.

According to the Guardian, Tobias Boelter, a cryptography and security researcher at the University of California, Berkeley, said that due to the way WhatsApp has implemented its end-to-end encryption protocol, Facebook can intercept and read users’ messages.

This was in an article which went on to explain how Whatsapp works in terms of security. The report said that WhatsApp’s encryption relies on the "generation of unique security keys," which are traded and verified between users to ensure that communications are secure and cannot be intercepted.


Facebook, it has been revealed, can resend undelivered messages with a new security key, effectively allowing the company to access the 'encrypted' messages without the sender or recipient being aware or able to prevent it from happening. (The sender is alerted after the fact if they have opted into encryption warnings.)

This is of course a big issue in terms of Freedom of speech with the possibility of spying a huge fear here.

According to Boelter, "If WhatsApp is asked by a government agency to disclose its messaging records, it can effectively grant access due to the change in keys," 

The report has been made available to Facebook but nothing has been said yet, so we have no idea what will happen moving forward, but if nothing is done, then one will have to be very careful of their activity on WhatsApp, because you never know who's reading.

Google Doodle is a very popular feature on the search engine that usually pops up on special days; Mother's day, Health day, Christmas etc and in its little way it educates people on those important days thereby sensitising them to it. 

Now it seems Facebook has a plan of their own to battle this and rival Google's ingenious plan.

"We are introducing a marketing programme to invite people to share and talk about events and moments that are happening in their communities and around the world," Gary Briggs, Chief Marketing Officer at Facebook, wrote in a post. 

The plan by Facebook is to have messages appear at the top of News Feed about a specific event or moment. 

The goal of the message will be "to give people ways to connect and share with friends during holidays and events". 

The programme will also help people discover fun and interesting cultural moments and celebrate moments in history that continue to make the world more open and connected. 

"Users will start seeing a message from Facebook in their News Feed wishing them Happy Holidays. People will be invited to share a holiday card with their friends on Facebook and choose from a set of 18 custom-designed cards," the post read.

With BlueStacks you now have access to stream gaming apps on facebook live.If you are into gaming you should be excited about this.

BlueStacks is a mobile gaming platform that allows users stream live games.On Friday BlueStacks announced an integration with Facebook Live’s application programming interface that allows users to stream their apps and games directly to the social networking site.This means the company's over 150 million users can now stream any app from inside BlueStacks to their own profile, their friend’s timelines, or their own fan page live.

The San jose-based company had something to say about this,
Contextual streaming is the future of live,” said BlueStacks CEO Rosen Sharma. “By giving people the ability to pair live streams with any app, it allows them to create more engaging content,” Sharma noted. “We want to free people up to engage in app-fueled experiences like singing with Smule’s ‘Sing! Karaoke or sharing their gameplay from VainGlory,” Sharma pointed out. Given Facebook’s size and reach, adding another promotional channel is a boon for mobile developers and publishers.In addition to integrating Facebook Live, BlueStacks has partnered with China-based streaming services, PandaTV and DouYu to bring mobile app streaming to the 420 million mobile gamers.
This indeed is a great way to promote apps to audiences and also where users can share app experiences.Its can also inspire others to devolope great apps that can be useful in this tech world today. 

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is visiting Nigeria this week on his first trip to Africa, using his time in the country to visit the Yaba technology hub in Lagos, meet with developers and partners, and explore Nollywood. 

 Zuckerberg is in Nigeria to listen and learn and take ideas back to California on how Facebook can better support tech development and entrepreneurship across Africa. One of his first stops on the trip was to visit a 'Summer of Code Camp' at the Co-Creation Hub (CcHub) in Yaba, known as the Silicon Valley of Nigeria. 

CcHub opened in 2011 and at the time didn't even have an office. Five years later they fill three floors and the roof of a building. At CcHub people can learn how to code, developers can get help launching their first products, and find mentors and funding. At CcHub Zuckerberg met with developers like Temi Giwa, who runs a platform called Life Bank that makes blood available when and where it is needed in Nigeria. Life Bank saves lives by mobilizing blood donations, taking inventory of all blood available in the country, and delivering blood in the right condition to where it is needed. 

After visiting CcHub Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook, said: 

 “This is my first trip to sub-Saharan Africa. I'll be meeting with developers and entrepreneurs, and learning about the startup ecosystem in Nigeria. The energy here is amazing and I'm excited to learn as much as I can. 

 “The first place I got to visit was the Co-creation Hub Nigeria (CcHUB) in Yaba. I got to talk to kids at a summer coding camp and entrepreneurs who come to CcHub to build and launch their apps. I'm looking forward to meeting more people in Nigeria.” 

Meeting developers at Andela Mark then went to Andela, an engineering organization that is building the next generation of technical leaders in Africa. Andela is a business that recruits the most talented technologists in Africa and shapes them into world-class developers through a four-year technical leadership program. In the two years since it was founded, Andela has accepted just over 200 engineers from a pool of more than 40,000 applicants.

Andela developers spend six months mastering a technical stack and contributing to open source projects before being placed with global technology companies as full-time, distributed teammates, working out of Andela headquarters in Lagos and Nairobi. 

Earlier this year, the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative invested in Andela after being impressed by the company's innovative model of learning and its drive to connect the global technology ecosystem with the most talented developers in Africa. Seni Sulyman, Director, Andela Lagos, said:

 “We are excited and honored to welcome Mark Zuckerberg to Lagos. His visit reinforces not only his support of Andela’s mission, but his belief that indeed the next generation of great technology leaders will come out of Lagos, Nigeria and cities across Africa. 

Andela has created a platform for passionate, driven software developers and engineers to break into the global tech ecosystem, but the barriers to entry are still very high. Mark’s visit demonstrates to all Nigerian developers and entrepreneurs that they’ve caught the attention of the tech world, and they are capable of succeeding on a truly global level." 

At the end of the day Zuckerberg stopped by an Express WiFi stand in Lagos owned by Rosemary Njoku. Facebook's Express WiFi lets entrepreneurs like Rosemary set up a hot spot to help their community access apps and services built by local developers. 

To see Mark Zuckerberg’s Facebook post: https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10103069173423651&set=a.612287952871.2204760.4&type=3&theater

Intruder Alert!...Back in 2014 when Facebook bought Whatsapp issues were raised concerning if facebook would be granted permission to access user data.Jan Koum one of Whatsapp founders assured that the deal would not affect the privacy of the million mobile messaging users.

But now they are starting to compromise,as they have granted facebook permission to access or rather intrude the privacy of users.On thursday Whatsapp said that it would begin disclosing the phone numbers and analytics data of its users to Facebook. This will be the first time the messaging service has connected users’ accounts to the social network to share data, as Facebook tries to coordinate information across its collection of businesses.

You might want to ask why the sudden change of privacy policy,here's what whatsapp had to say in a blogspot;

We want to explore ways for you to communicate with businesses that matter to you, too, while still giving you an experience without third-party banner ads and spam,data-sharing would also be used to fight spam text messages across our service.Neither we nor Facebook would be able to read user's’ encrypted messages and individual phone numbers would not be given to advertisers.Users are still required to provide a phone number only to sign up for the service, and can opt out of giving it to Facebook.
Not everyone appreciates this change some people had to react.WhatsApp’s privacy policy overhaul raises concerns about potential legal challenges. Marc Rotenberg, president of the Electronic Privacy Information Center, a privacy advocacy group in Washington, said it would file a complaint on Monday with the Federal Trade Commission to stop WhatsApp from sharing users’ data with Facebook. The group filed a similar case in 2014, citing promises that WhatsApp had made to protect individuals’ privacy.

If this new plan stays effective,Whatsapp would have to reassure users on it's new privacy policy.

A fairly well-known hacker group, Ourmine, with 41,000 followers on Twitter, claimed on Sunday that they'd successfully hacked Mark Zuckerberg's Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest and Twitter accounts. 

On checking things out, Zuckerberg's verified Twitter account had been defaced

Ourmine went on to brag about their achievement in a tweet and asked Zuckerberg to contact the group.

Another message of a similar vein was left on a Pinterest account allegedly associated with Zuckerberg.

This may have been linked to a large-scale data dump that occurred on May 18 2012 because of LinkedIn who claimed that more than 100 million members' email and password combinations hacked.

During this breach, hackers apparently stole and publicly released a separate set of 6.5 million encrypted passwords that year.

Facebook has started rolling out a more diverse set of emojis to its Messenger service on the web, iOS and Android. 
Facebook Messenger has always allowed you to use the diverse emoji offered via your smartphone or computer. Now, these diverse emojis are baked into Messenger. 
With this new update, users will be able to access over 1,500 new emojis — 100 of which were designed “to better reflect gender and skin tones” with gender-agnostic options and multi-colored emojis.

“We’re diversifying the genders to create a more balanced mix that’s more representative of our world,” Facebook wrote in a blog post. “Now, using Messenger emojis, you’ll see a female police officer, runner, pedestrian, surfer and swimmer for the very first time, and we’ll keep rolling these out.”
Whatsapp already has an update like this and now Facebook Messenger has joined in on the fun and will let you set the skin color you prefer your default emojis to be. 
Another significant aspect of this roll-out is the placement of emojis within the Messenger app. Before, the emojis on Facebook Messenger’s web app were buried in the back. In the iOS app, they were virtually nonexistent.
Now, the Messenger composer will include an emoji picker located on the left side.
So there you have it, enjoy your new Facebook update and have fun with the new emojis

Microsoft has announced that it will be joining forces with Facebook to build "MAREA", an internet cable that will be put under the Atlantic Ocean. 
This they say is to help meet the growing demand for Microsoft's various online services.

Microsoft stated In a blog post,
"We're seeing an ever-increasing customer demand for high speed, reliable connections for Microsoft cloud services, including Bing, Office 365, Skype, Xbox Live, and Microsoft Azure. As the world continues to move towards a future based on cloud computing, Microsoft is committed to building out the unprecedented level of global infrastructure required to support ever faster and even more resilient connections to our cloud services. This robust, global infrastructure will enable customers to more quickly and reliably store, manage, transmit and access their data in the Microsoft Cloud."
The cable is said to be over 4,100 miles long (That's really long) and will stretch from Virginia Beach, Virginia to Bilbao, Spain. It will also have eight fiber pairs that can handle as much as 160Tbps of data. 
The duo od Microsoft and facebook will partner with Telxius, Telefónica's telecommunications infrastructure company, on the contruction of "MAREA" . Telxius will be in charge of the cable once it is complete.
Construction kicks off in August 2016 and is scheduled to be finished in October 2017. 

The word is that Saudi Arabia after blocking features on Viber and Whatsapp have now moved to block Facebook chat.

Features such as internet calling video have been banned. There has been no clear official reason beyond 'Regulations' for the block.

It is speculated that this is to protect indigenous telecom companies from losing revenue as internet calls help reduce costs of international calls or really lengthy discussions.

An official stated that the service with its features was banned because it failed to “comply with regulations”. He threatened that any other app that fails to comply with those regulations will also be banned.

“Appropriate action will be taken against applications or services that do not comply with the regulations,” the spokesman at the Saudi Arabian commission told Arab News.

Months back we read about the news that FaceBook founder Mark Zuckerberg and its Board of directors purchased the number one text messaging app Whatsapp for $19billion dollars but it looks like the transaction was withheld up until Friday(03-Oct-2014) when Reuters broke the news that the European Union has finally approved the purchase.

First thing that could have popped up on anyone's mind is "Why Do They Need Approval ?"... Well according to a reliable source  the deal was on hold because the EU felt it would harm communication telecom market...Here's what they have to say..

"We have carefully reviewed this proposed acquisition and come to the conclusion that it would not hamper competition in this dynamic and growing market. Consumers will continue to have a wide choice of consumer communications apps," European Competition Commissioner Joaquin Almunia said.

Although in the United States back in April Facebook had already gotten approval to acquire Whatsapp less than two m,onths after Facebook annouced it's proposal in February.

WhatsApp and its rivals such as KakaoTalk, China’s WeChat and Viber have in recent years won over telecoms operators’ customers with a free text messaging option, posing a serious threat to the sector’s revenues from this business, which totalled about $120 billion last year, according to market researcher Ovum.

Img Crdit: CrackBerry

Over 600,000 Facebook users have taken part in a psychological experiment organised by the social media company, without their knowledge. 
Facebook altered the tone of the users' news feed to highlight either positive or negative posts from their friends, which were seen on their news feed.They then monitored the users' response, to see whether their friends' attitude had an impact on their own. 
"The results show emotional contagion," wrote a team of Facebook scientists, in a paper published by the PNAS journal - Proceedings of the National Academy of Scientists of the United States.
"When positive expressions were reduced, people produced fewer positive posts and more negative posts; when negative expressions were reduced, the opposite pattern occurred. These results indicate that emotions expressed by others on Facebook influence our own emotions, constituting experimental evidence for massive-scale contagion via social networks." 

Facebook were able to carry out the experiment because all users have to tick a box agreeing to their terms and conditions. These include "internal operations, including troubleshooting, data analysis, testing, research and service improvement." 

In the study, the authors point out that they stayed within the remit of the agreement by using a machine to pick out positive and negative posts, meaning no user data containing personal information was actually viewed by human researchers. 

The study, carried out over a week in January 2012, was carried out for scientific purposes. But evidence that social media can have such a strong impact on people's mental state will certainly be of interest to advertisers. 

The lead scientist, Adam Kramer, said in an interview when he joined Facebook in March 2012 that he took the job because "Facebook data constitutes the largest field study in the history of the world." 

Src: Telegraph
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