Sending unsolicited text messages is bad form, and Facebook got caught using their 2 Factor Authentication database to send out ads and other notifications. Facebook admitted their faux pas, and apologized. Leo says that's become the motis operandi of Facebook, Move Fast and Break Things, then apologize. In other words, better to ask forgiveness, than ask permission.
Tim's friend wants to start up a YouTube Channel and wants to know how to make money off of it. Leo says that is a very good idea to get the word out about her cookie business. YouTube is a visual medium and so is cooking. YouTube has become the destination for all kinds of cooks who are using the portal to showcase recipes, techniques, and more. The more visually entertaining and informative it is, the more popular. They'll also want to be sure that each episode doesn't last very long.
The New York Times recently ran a story about a company that's been selling fake social media accounts to celebrities and businesses. It's called Devumi, and it has millions of fake Twitter accounts. Some of them are based on stolen social identities. They may have pictures, backgrounds, and bios that are real but are part of a fake account that is then sold off. This is very widespread because in Hollywood, the amount of money actors make in a movie is often tied to the number of followers they have. This is what happens when follower counts are an important measure of success.
Brian is wondering if he can prevent third-party apps from seeing his contacts list on his phone. Leo says it's very common for apps like Snapchat, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and more to suggest inviting friends from your contacts list. They have to ask permission to get to this list, though. These apps upload the contacts list to their servers so it can alert you that someone new has joined that app. Leo says that absolutely is a privacy breach.
Brad wants to know how to recover his brother's Facebook account without using his email. Leo says that there's an extreme account recovery system that involves sending a picture, and then Facebook will reset it. Here's how to recover his account on Facebook.
The big story today is news that back when Twitter was launched, Facebook decided to change it's feed to include more news stories, thereby addicting its users and keeping them online longer. Leo says that Facebook discovered that they could sell more advertising and make more money if they could hook users to spend more time. Leo says that Facebook prefers to call it more "engaging." But he also says that strategy may have backfired, as engagement has been declining over the last two years.
Ivan wants to know what he's giving away when he logs into a site using his Facebook ID. Leo says that's called Single Sign-on, which makes it easier to sign in. Many services, including Google and Twitter also offer it as a convenience. It's a user verification system that doesn't require him to create an account, nor does it give them access to his account. But it gives Facebook, Google, and Twitter access to more information about where he visits. It's safe to use it, but if he's concerned, he can create a dummy account that he'll only use for that purpose.
Facebook released a study on whether or not spending time on social media is bad for us. The report comes from the director of research at Facebook, David Ginsberg, and a research scientist at Facebook, Moira Burke. It's good to ask this question, and it's surprising Facebook would even ask it — until you read their conclusions. They determined it is bad for you if you're passively consuming it. They say in the study that the people who just read Facebook would feel worse, but those who interacted with others felt better. These findings seem a little self-serving, according to Leo.
Jimmy's friend is trying to help her regain her deceased son's Instagram account that was disabled for inactivity. Leo says that another avenue to try is Facebook since they own Instagram. They have a memorial site feature for accounts whose owners are now deceased. Jimmy can try going through them to see if they can be converted as well.
As the first president and CEO of Facebook, Sean Parker had the experience to make the social media network a success. Now, in an interview, Parker is essentially apologizing for letting the genie out of the bottle. Parker says that Facebook has literally changed our relationship with society, our families, and our children. He also says it's a tremendous time suck that impacts productivity.