NH Attorney General probes ‘voter shaming’ mail – The Keene Sentinel

NH Attorney General probes 'voter shaming' mail
The Keene Sentinel
A political tactic known as “voter shaming” has made an appearance in Cheshire County and other parts of the state, prompting the N.H. Attorney General's Office to investigate. In the days leading up to Tuesday's N.H. Primary, residents from across New …

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Automated Captions Coming to Facebook Video Ads

Captioned video ads will soon be the new norm on Facebook.

The social network is releasing a tool to make adding captions to video ads easier for advertisers. It is a method that Facebook is recommending marketers use to capture consumer attention.

“Internal tests show that captioned video ads increase video view time by an average of 12 percent,” Facebook said in a blog post.

“Previously, advertisers were only able to add captions to Facebook video ads by embedding captions or uploading their own caption files. But soon, advertisers can choose to have captions added automatically.”

The upcoming captioning tool will be automated, producing captions for video ads and then serving them up to advertisers via the ad creation tool so they can review and edit a caption before saving it to their video ad.

The automated caption tool is currently available only for U.S. English captions. It will roll out globally to Ads Manager and Power Editor in the coming weeks.

Facebook also plans to add more reporting and buying options for video ads.

“Advertisers are now able to see the percentage of people who have viewed their videos with sound in Page Insights and will soon be able to see this metric in Ads Insights too,” Facebook said. “And, unlike some other digital environments, Facebook ad delivery is based on real people.”

Two tools introduced for U.S. advertisers are now available globally: integration with Moat for video ad analytics and the 100 percent in-view buying option announced in September.

Facebook is also offering a number of tips for video advertisers such as making use of captions, logos and products to communicate the appropriate message, even without sound.

The social network also suggests choosing carefully the video thumbnail images and titles to draw as many viewers as possible.

“Brand colors, themes and imagery can help people connect the video to your brand,” Facebook said. “Front-loading lifestyle/product shots and recognizable spokespeople can create interest, as can scenes with action or vivid backgrounds.”

The social media firm also suggests experimenting with and testing different approaches to learn what works best for the desired audience.


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Jennifer Cowan is the Managing Editor for SiteProNews.

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Retailers, GTINs Required By May 16 For Google Product Listing Ads

GTINs will be required for brand name products sold by multiple merchants.

The post Retailers, GTINs Required By May 16 For Google Product Listing Ads appeared first on Search Engine Land.

Please visit Search Engine Land for the full article.

Search Engine Land: News & Info About SEO, PPC, SEM, Search Engines & Search Marketing

5 Simple Strategies To Improve Your Blog’s Search Rankings

Is blogging a major component of your digital marketing strategy? Columnist Daniel Faggella explains how to help your blog reach its full potential in search.

The post 5 Simple Strategies To Improve Your Blog’s Search Rankings appeared first on Search Engine Land.

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Search Engine Land: News & Info About SEO, PPC, SEM, Search Engines & Search Marketing

Google Will Soon Remove Approved Right to Be Forgotten Links Globally

Google is about to make European regulators happy.

The tech titan has finally agreed to remove disputed links from all of its domains, including Google.com, in response to right to be forgotten requests from European Union residents.

Sources with “direct knowledge of the matter” told the New York Times the change, which Google has yet to announce, will be in place sometime next month.

Europe’s top court ruled in May 2014 that people have the “right to be forgotten” online forcing Google to comply with requests from “ordinary people” to remove outdated links and irrelevant information from its search engine. The European Union Court of Justice, in its ruling, said search engines must either edit or erase online search results if they are found to violate a person’s privacy.

Google, in June 2015, posted an online form that Europeans can fill out to request deletion of online information. But that was not the end of the issue. EU privacy watchdogs drafted new rules for Google to follow in November 2014 demanding the search engine firm, when it receives a right to be forgotten request, remove the links from all Google search engines, not just its European search.

Google had been fighting the rules, saying European authorities do not have the right to govern its other search engines.

While Google has not said why it has capitulated on the issues, it is obvious the tech firm is tired of the ongoing legal battle which, eventually, would see the company facing some hefty fines from privacy regulators across the EU.

France in particular, for instance, has been the proverbial thorn in Google’s side. France’s Commission Nationale de L’Informatique et des Libertés (CNIL) last summer ordered the company to extend the ‘right to be forgotten’ law to all of its search results rather than just those in Europe after receiving hundreds of complaints from people who had submitted right to be forgotten requests that were not completely delisted by Google — meaning, the offending info could still be found on Google’s U.S. Web search.

Whether Google’s surrender to EU demands means its legal woes will finally end in Europe is not yet clear. Regulators from EU countries will still need to determine if the change means Google now complies with their privacy laws.


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Jennifer Cowan is the Managing Editor for SiteProNews.

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5 Ways To Crawl A Staging Server Before Important Site Changes Go Live (To Save SEO)

You can uncover many potential SEO problems with a thorough crawl of the staging environment, but what if it’s not readily accessible? Columnist Glenn Gabe shares some tips.

The post 5 Ways To Crawl A Staging Server Before Important Site Changes Go Live (To Save SEO) appeared first on Search…

Please visit Search Engine Land for the full article.

Search Engine Land: News & Info About SEO, PPC, SEM, Search Engines & Search Marketing

Hackers Attack IRS in Attempt to Steal Tax Return Information

Hackers may be after your tax return.

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) discovered a breach on its Electronic Filing PIN application earlier this week and quickly shut down it.

The cyber-thieves used personal data it had filched from outside the IRS’ systems in an attempt to create E-file PINs — which are used to electronically file a tax return — for stolen social security numbers.

The IRS says no personal taxpayer data was compromised in the attack.

“The IRS also is taking immediate steps to notify affected taxpayers by mail that their personal information was used in an attempt to access the IRS application,” the IRS said in a statement. “The IRS is also protecting their accounts by marking them to protect against tax-related identity theft.”

IRS cyber-security experts are currently working to determine what if any damage was done by the hackers. The IRS is working with other agencies and the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration and is also sharing information with its Security Summit state and industry partners.

Based on its review of its systems thus far, the IRS has identified unauthorized attempts involving roughly 464,000 unique SSNs, of which 101,000 SSNs were used to successfully access an E-file PIN.

“The incident, involving an automated bot, occurred last month, and the IRS continues to closely monitor the web application,” the agency said. “This incident is not connected or related to last week’s outage of IRS tax processing systems.”

This is not the first time the IRS has been targeted. Last year, hackers stole the tax records of roughly 300,000 people.


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Jennifer Cowan is the Managing Editor for SiteProNews.

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Effects of Social Media on Teens

Social media has indeed changed the world. Out of the 7.2 billion people on the globe, more than three billion have direct access to the Internet out of which 2.1 billion have active social media accounts. As shocking as it sounds, it’s indeed a wakeup call for us. With a majority of the active users being teenagers and young people, I am restricting myself to the effect of social media on teens and young people under the age of 30. Where is it leading us? Is it a bane or a boon? Here are some effects of social media on the life of an average teen:

The Unknown Danger of Addiction 

Nobody steps into something with an intention of getting addicted. Whether it’s smoking or drinking; social media or cyber gaming, teens get in with an idea of ‘trying something new.’ But unfortunately, most of them end up getting caught by these chains. Studies show that most of the people addicted to social media don’t even know that they are addicted. Most people join social media saying, “I’ll use maybe once in a while.” Then the frequency of usage reduces from ‘once a week’ to ‘once a day’ to ‘once an hour’ and so on. Before long, they have fallen into the trap of social media addiction.

Affects the Thought Line

As the days go by, social media affects the thought line. They start thinking about, “what facebook status shall I upload today?” “Which picture will be suitable for my next display picture?” and start pondering on such thoughts all the time. These thoughts cause them to lose focus on their studies, social life and other responsibilities. It seems like their focus is more on how to increase the number of ‘likes’ or ‘followers’ than on how to increase their academic performance.

Creates an Unwanted Pressure

Thinking on these matters all the time creates an unwanted pressure that leads to stress, anxiety. “What will my friends think?” “How do I respond to that comment?” and also dealing with bullying are some really undesirable effects of such forums.

Dependency Factor

A statistic shows that 45 percent of them feel worried, anxious and uncomfortable if they are not able to access these portals. Their dependency on these portals increases more and more as the days go by.

TIME Flies Away Forever

Most young people hook into these portals as a source of relaxation after a hectic and tiresome day at work, school or college. But, what they don’t realize is the amount of time that flies unaccountably every day, not to forget the fact that time once gone is lost forever. Some of them spend more than five hours on social media forums on a daily basis which leaves no room for their personal, social and family responsibilities and growth.

SLEEP Pattern Affected

A study states that 54 percent of them check into these portals while in bed. They just go online with an intention of replying to messages from friends, checking latest trends on these sites and to know what their near ones are up to. But, what starts small amplifies to a great extent as they end up staying online till late at night to even up to the wee hours of the next day! This affects their sleeping pattern and hence can lead to a wide range of complications in the long run. They end up sleeping for little more than four hours whereas the minimum amount of sleep required for them on a daily basis is at least seven to eight hours.

Unhealthy Eating Habits

Staying up late at night can also foster unhealthy eating habits which also leads to various medical complications. Recently there’s been a great increase in the number of people below the age of 25 affected by health conditions like stroke, cardiac arrests, diabetes and high blood pressure to name a few.

Obesity and its Effects

Obesity is the most devastating effect of social media. Either because of the unhealthy eating habits or because of being in the same position for hours together instead of doing something active, obesity is finding its way into more teens’ lives. This not only affects their physical health but also the mental health as teens are led into self pity and depression because of their size and weight.

These points throw some light on the negative effects of social media on teens. If they learn to keep it under control and use it wisely, it wouldn\’t be a problem.


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With writing being his cup of tea, John Giftah has taken to writing various articles that range from social media to self help and counseling. You can connect with him at https://www.facebook.com/john.giftah

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Google is Booting the Botnets From its Ad Network

Google is getting to grips with botnets on its ad network.

WebmasterWorld

The Free Business Model

We are all consumers. Whether we consume products, services, or content, at some point, we all consume. Our method of consumption might change over time, but the reality is, consumption never ends. Consumption does have a limit – money. Yes, our resources (money), not our desire, limits consumption.

When faced with limitation, how do we choose? Cost, perceived value, desire, and enjoyment level are the most common factors. However, when ‘free’ is involved, this can reduce the impact of these factors. Free enables fulfillment of consumption without limitation or rather without a perceived cost.

‘Free’ brings us e-mail, enables us to share photos, allows us to watch videos, and provides us a medium to communicate ideas, to name a few. However, free does come at a cost: time. It takes time to create profiles, to create content, to share, view, and compose content/communications. We also spend considerable time understanding and learning the plethora of free offerings available.

Our freely invested time invariably turns into dependency. Our time spent without a second thought results in a dependency upon the service or offering.

Why does dependency matter? Well, in dependency we give the service provider a level of control. Also, now we say ‘yes’ to offerings we would have said ‘no’ to BEFORE the dependency; YouTube, a perfect example.

YouTube offers a free medium to share video and audio content. We as consumers do not pay for YouTube – it’s free and has become the standard platform in North America as a result. To see a video, or upload or share a video, most people use YouTube to the point it has become a verb. Side note: when a service offering becomes a verb, a dependency has been built around the service.

Recently, YouTube introduced two changes:

1. Videos automatically move to the ‘next’ recommended video. This increases content consumption AND YouTube conveniently controls which next video is recommended/suggested. Often sponsored content drives that recommendation.

2. Advertisements now appear not only at the beginning of the video, but also in the middle of the video as well.

This works out to a cost of 15 to 30 seconds of your time at the beginning of a piece of content as well as sometimes 15 to 30 seconds of your time in the middle of the content.

While subtle, payment has officially begun: we are now paying with our time. Impressive how cleverly YouTube orchestrated this dependency and payment:

• Free access

• Content controlled and provided by users

• Easily accessible via mobile

• Apps automatically added to the very first revolutionary Smartphone: the iPhone

The No. 1 search engine in North America – Google — purchased YouTube.

So what are the takeaways of ‘free?’ In the above YouTube example, watching advertisements is now required (paying with our time). Ironically one of the reasons people moved to the Internet in the first place was to avoid advertisements and commercials on TV channels.

Also for YouTube’s mass audience to reject these policies and switch to another platform would require a superior ‘free’ service offering matching YouTube’s functionality and mass adoption, AND have the SEO to be consistently ranked at the top. Remember Google controls the ranking for North America. An almost insurmountable possibility.

Should YouTube be compensated for its excellent service offering? Yes. Is its approach wrong? Well it’s legal. Does YouTube’s approach prevent the consumer from knowing the actual cost of the offering until it’s too late? Yes.

Here’s the question for each person to ask: Is free worth it?

On a personal note, I enjoy Google and YouTube service offerings, daily and weekly respectively. This article highlights an important underlying idea and was not meant to isolate Google or YouTube. Free has a cost and Google and YouTube illustrate this cost brilliantly. All ‘free’ offerings require a slightly different payment, not all replace money with time as a currency. Interesting concept to ponder…

Stay tuned for part two: free from the business perspective and the opportunity for monetization.


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Christiano Ferraro is a management consultant serving the start-up and small to medium-sized business community with more than 10years of sales success in technology including software sales, SaaS, and telecom. Christiano is a firm believer in consultative sales methodology as a strong sales foundation. Past sales divisions include: new business development, key account development, channel sales and VP sales.

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