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Facebook taking on groupon – Launches Group-Buying Prototype

January 27, 2011 Leave a comment

Facebook is currently testing a new feature called “Buy With Friends,” which allows users to get discounts on virtual goods purchased by their friends.

Here’s how it works: A user makes an in-app purchase using Facebook’s currency, Facebook credits, and shares it in his or her newsfeed. A friend sees the purchase and can then buy the same item at a discount directly in the newsfeed.

Currently, the feature only works for certain in-game purchases of virtual goods. Developers determine the items and terms of the promotion.

Speaking at the Inside Social Apps Conference in San Francisco Tuesday, Facebook’s head of commerce product marketing Deb Liu said that during early tests, more than half of users chose to share their purchases with friends, Forbes reports.

Although Buy With Friends is currently restricted to virtual goods, we can easily envision how this feature could be expanded to include physical goods as well, especially as more and more retailers set up shot on Facebook. The prototype could be Facebook’s way to participate in the kinds of group-buying offers recently popularized by the likes of Groupon and Livingsocial.

Twitter Now Worth $4 Billion

January 27, 2011 Leave a comment

Twitter’s market value has reached $4 billion just a month after it raised $200 million in funding.

According to SharesPost, a secondary market for buying and selling stock in privately held companies, Twitter’s value has jumped to $4 billion, based on recent transactions. That is a $300 million increase in value in just over a month, based on the $3.7 billion valuation set by its funding round in December. Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers led Twitter’s most recent round of funding.

Twitter’s market capitalization will likely continue to rise in the near future. Several recent stock purchases on the private markets imply that Twitter’s value is more than $6 billion. While these smaller transactions aren’t a definitive basis for defining Twitter’s value, they are a benchmark that can help determine whether a private company’s value is trending up or down.

Facebook is still the king of private markets, though. While its most recent funding round valued the company at $50 billion, its value on the secondary markets has skyrocketed to $75 billion.

Secondary markets for privately traded companies are currently the subject of an SEC probe over whether they violate SEC regulations.

Facebook ‘enhances intelligence’, Twitter ‘diminishes it’

September 7, 2009 2 comments

In today’s world, they both are leading social networking sites but with a difference – while Facebook enhances intelligence, Twitter diminishes it, a leading British psychologist has claimed.

According to Dr Tracy Alloway of Sterling University, spending time on Facebook could enhance a key element of one’s intelligence that is vital to success in life, but using the site Twitter might have the opposite effect.

In fact, playing video war games and solving Sudoku may have the same effect as keeping up to date with Facebook, while text messaging, micro-blogging on Twitter can weaken “working memory” which involves the ability both to remember information and to use it.

“I’m not saying they’re good for your socialisation skills, but they do make you use your working memory. You’re keeping track of past actions and mapping the actions you’re going to take.

“Sudoku also stretches the working memory, as keeping up with friends on Facebook. But the instant nature of texting, Twitter and YouTube isn’t healthy for working memory.

On Twitter you receive an endless stream of information, but it’s also very succinct.

“You don’t have to process that information. Your attention span is being reduced and you’re not engaging your brain and improving nerve connections,” Dr Alloway told was quoted by The Daily Telegraph as saying.

Dr Alloway has extensively studied working memory and believes it to be far more important to success and happiness than IQ. In fact, her team has developed a working memory training programme that greatly increased the performance of slow-learning children aged 11 to 14 at a school.