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Entries by Bianca Bosker

16 And Famous
How Nash Grier Became The Most Popular Kid In The World

(78) Comments | Posted August 7, 2014 | 7:36 AM

Photos by Heather Marie Photography

Nash Grier has a tendency to wreak havoc on malls. One time in Iceland, a single tweet about his whereabouts brought 5,000 girls to a shopping center in search of Nash and his sidekick, Jerome...

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Facebook Now Takes Up About As Much Of Our Time As Grooming Or Chores

(27) Comments | Posted July 23, 2014 | 6:56 PM

American Facebook members spend an average of 40 minutes per day on the social network -- about as much time as Americans devote to household chores and personal grooming.

Mark Zuckerberg shared the statistic on Facebook usage during an earnings call Wednesday, and qualified it by...

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Study Shows How People Use Snapchat -- And It's Not Sexting

(3) Comments | Posted July 14, 2014 | 7:48 AM

Sexting on Snapchat may be less common than you think, at least according to a new survey of adults who use the app.

A study from the University of Washington that polled 127 Snapchat users ages 18 and over found that 60 percent of respondents used Snapchat primarily to send...

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The Most Anxiety-Provoking Instagram Photo Is No Photo At All

(14) Comments | Posted July 8, 2014 | 1:32 PM

One of my closest friends posted something highly suspect on Instagram last month: Nothing. He and a handful of friends were on a four-day getaway, and none shared a photo the entire time they were gone.

On Instagram -- the de-facto distribution hub for the fanciest, most impressive things...

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How Emoji Get Lost In Translation

(11) Comments | Posted June 27, 2014 | 7:36 AM

I recently texted a friend to say how I was excited to meet her new boyfriend, and, because "excited" doesn't look so exciting on an iPhone screen, I editorialized with what seemed then like an innocent "emoji." (Translation: Can't wait for the fun night out!)...

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Teens Can't Stop Using Facebook Even Though They Hate It

(3) Comments | Posted June 24, 2014 | 2:00 PM

Facebook is like indoor plumbing: You can live without it, but it’s uncomfortable.

It’s thus little surprise to learn a new study has found teens are not ditching Facebook en masse, contrary to previous polls. According to a survey of over 4,500 12- to 17-year-olds...

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Tinder Tutors Ease The Burden of Picking Out 6 Photos

(1) Comments | Posted June 19, 2014 | 3:43 PM

When the matchmaking app Tinder first launched, everyone claimed it was the easiest, laziest way to date online. There were no quizzes, no essays, no personality tests. Even reading was optional.

But those people were wrong. Tinder is hard. You must upload not one but six (6) different (!)...

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Facebook's Snapchat Clone Has A Critical Flaw: You Never Know Who's Screenshotting

(2) Comments | Posted June 17, 2014 | 4:26 PM

Facebook, the social network that needs, loves and wrings many billions of dollars out of our photos, has jealously watched Snapchat attract a greater share of our pictures, over 700 million of which we share daily on the app. To stop the hemorrhaging, Facebook did what Facebook

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How Emoticons Can Make You Happy And Win You Friends

(1) Comments | Posted June 17, 2014 | 1:06 PM

No form of communication has been as maligned as the emoticon. Emily Post's decorum police thumb their noses at smileys' grins. "[T]hey look juvenile in business," the etiquette gods caution. "[A]void using them." The distaste for emoticons is almost as old as the world wide web itself: In...

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Don't Believe The So-Called Turing Test Breakthrough

(2) Comments | Posted June 9, 2014 | 3:40 PM

This past weekend, the University of Reading managed to convince the press that a chatbot had, for the first time ever, successfully passed the Turing Test by fooling judges into believing it was human.

It's fitting that the software that allegedly trumped the Turing Test, an influential measure of machine...

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Snapchat Wins Because You Have No Attention Span

(2) Comments | Posted June 9, 2014 | 7:40 AM

What makes Snapchat so addictive, according to the standard refrain, is that it lets people send incriminating pictures guilt-free. Instead of us being self-destructive, it's the messages that self-destruct.

But for many Snapchatters, the appeal of the photo-sharing app lies somewhere else entirely: Snapchat forces focus.

We don't know...

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Should Online Ads Really Offer Binge Drinkers A Booze Discount?

(0) Comments | Posted June 6, 2014 | 7:30 AM

Does the Internet have a duty to protect us from ourselves?

I began to wonder as I attempted to trick Facebook into believing I was single. Hoping to escape the plague of bridal ads that descended after I announced my engagement, I tried to confuse the...

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The Startup Life In A Country That's Just Getting Smartphones

(0) Comments | Posted June 4, 2014 | 12:49 PM

YANGON, Myanmar -- Tucked on the second floor of a turquoise building with peeling paint is a five-person tech startup that shares an office with Linn Construction, a property developer. Thar Htet, a cherubic 29-year-old Yangon native who dreams of Google-style success, does double duty as the founder of the...

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We've Found The One Man Who Thinks Google Glass' Look Can Work To His Advantage

(9) Comments | Posted May 20, 2014 | 7:36 AM

NEW YORK CITY -- Language undergoes strange mutations inside the airy Chelsea loft Google refers to as “Basecamp.” People who’ve paid $1,500 for Google’s prototype head computer are “Explorers.” At a gathering of Explorers at Basecamp last Thursday, attendees didn’t exchange business cards, but “dead trees.” They nodded at observations...

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Erasing Your Engagement From The Internet Is Impossible -- I Know, I Tried

(8) Comments | Posted May 14, 2014 | 7:30 AM

No one is more excited about my wedding than Facebook. Or possibly Google.

As they seem to see it, since getting engaged I’ve become an impressionable ATM from which their advertisers expect to withdraw some $30,000 -- the average price of an American wedding, minus honeymoon,

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Como as #hashtags se tornaram o punho erguido da pontuação

(0) Comments | Posted May 11, 2014 | 12:16 PM

As hashtags surgiram como uma maneira de fazer buscas por tuítes sobre temas específicos (#socialmedia, ou #mídiasocial), converteram-se em ferramenta para acrescentar nuances (#ohyeah, ou #éissoaí) e agora estão surgindo em lugares onde aparentemente não têm função prática nenhuma: em camisetas, capas de livros, bolsas e placas. Não podemos clicar...

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How #Hashtags Became The Raised Fist Of Punctuation

(79) Comments | Posted May 10, 2014 | 8:00 AM

Hashtags began as a way to search for tweets about specific topics (#socialmedia), evolved into a tool for adding nuance (#ohyeah) and are now showing up in places where they appear to serve no practical function whatsoever: on T-shirts, book covers, purses and signs. We can’t click on physical objects....

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What Mark Zuckerberg Means When He Says He Loves You

(12) Comments | Posted April 30, 2014 | 7:18 PM

When a social network loves its users very, very much, it helps them get some of their privacy back.

Mark Zuckerberg tried to convey an image of a beneficent Facebook at the company's f8 conference Wednesday, introducing an update that would let members claw back the personal information...

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Twitter Tries Out A New Definition For Twitter

(3) Comments | Posted April 29, 2014 | 9:25 PM

When Twitter filed for its initial public stock offering last year, it clumsily described itself as a "global platform for public self-expression and conversation in real time." This tagline was used by approximately no one.

As Twitter faces investor pressure to show its can attract more mainstream members,...

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At Last, A Formula For What Photos The Internet Likes

(11) Comments | Posted April 25, 2014 | 9:05 AM

Among the existential crises that plague me on sleepless nights: Why did my hilarious photo of a pig-roast-cum-dance-party get only nine "likes" on Instagram, when my airplane portrait got 40? And, crucially, will I ever learn how to be popular?

In what feels like an increasingly common scenario these days,...

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