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The Week in Social: Facebook Oculus, Reddit, and MLS

Reddit’s Alex Ohanian on Brands

To put it mildly, Reddit can be a contentious place for brands. By the same token, a brand that can survive on Reddit can likely thrive in any other online community. At SXSW, Reddit co-founder Alex Ohanian sat down to discuss how brands and people can excel in the wild west of cynicism. His main tips? Authenticity, transparency and self-awareness FTW.

Read more on Ad Age

Voice recognition in Oculus

Two stories this week highlight how Mark Zuckerberg is heavying-up on Oculus Rift. First is Facebook’s unveiling of speech commands for English-speaking Oculus and Gear VR users. The commands are limited to searches for now. Of more interest is that this is the first sighting of Facebook’s voice command system. Pairing the popularity of Siri, Cortana, and Alexa with the Facebook’s roadmap for everything media and communications will be a landmark development for how content is procured and consumed.

Read more at VentureBeat

Oculus can stream to FB Live

To, “share the magic of VR”, Oculus users outside the U.S. will find a feature that enables streaming their view to Facebook Live. The difficulty of marketing VR is the inherent first-person view, which is not easily conveyed beyond that person’s view. Enabling sharing from the POV is Facebook’s venture to promoting it’s VR content, and staying ahead in the streaming game.

Read more at The Verge

emoji postcard

As the digital becomes the norm, the tangible becomes romantic. Mojigram is a new venture that will mail a corrugated plastic emoji to your friends and frenemies with a personalized message adorning the back. Though more expensive than novel, we like this social-meets-snailmail venture. Let someone know you care enough to send the very best… emoji.

Read more at The Verge

Social media screening at customs

The Department of Homeland Security has been testing a social media screening platform for foreign travelers entering the United States. A new report this week indicates that the program has had poor results. The DHS Inspector General writes that the program’s goals lack enough criteria to be called any kind of success. We don’t expect these programs to change, though a coalition of more than 30 civil liberties organizations has officially protested the program.

Read more at The Verge

WhatsApp brings back text status

“If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”, is a platitude that often stands in the way of innovation. However, sometimes it’s a helpful reminder not to alienate your users. Whatsapp removed their text status messages a few weeks ago, replacing them with a Snapchat style picture feature. Following some backlash, Android users have noted that it’s coming back in a coming beta.

Read more at The Next Web

Oh Captain, Yahoo Captain

Though in the midst of a takeover by Verizon, Yahoo released a new feature this week. Captain is a text-based AI that enables you to use Yahoo to send reminders and tasks to your friends and family. By texting the AI, you can set a timed reminder for your spouse to take the kids to soccer practice. You can also perpetually add things to shared lists, like groceries, or steps toward being less controlling.

Read more at The Verge

Facebook to stream MLS

Major League Soccer will has a new social broadcaster in Facebook Live this coming season. Facebook will stream 22 games this season, adding specialized broadcast staff and special interactive features for viewers. This year, we will see MLB and NHL on Twitter, while Facebook has NFL and MLS. The deals for major league sports, along with the ads space that comes with them, will be a hot commodity this year.

Read more at TechCrunch

Working from home…

… if you’ve ever made your home your office, you can probably sympathize.