Tuesday, February 09, 2010

MediaWatch 09 FEB 10

Global Voices interviews Fabiano Angelico of Transparência Brasil. He explains why transparency and accountability projects tend to focus on federal rather than state and local governments and points us to one innovative project in Brazil in which bloggers 'adopt' local politicians.

The proportion of traffic to US news media from Facebook tripled over the past year - while that of Google News stayed static. Is this a real threat to Google?

Google is set to make a fresh attempt to gain a stronger foothold in the booming social networking business on Tuesday as it seeks to counter the growing threat that Facebook poses to some of its core services. At Google HQ, the search company is taking the wraps off new features for Gmail designed to extend the capabilities of the internet-based e-mail service to mirror some aspects of Facebook.

Heather Hopkins, North American analyst for Hitwise notes in a new blog post that "Facebook was the #4 source of visits to News and Media sites last week, after Google, Yahoo! and msn", and that the proportion it sends to US media sites has grown dramatically from about 1.2% to 3.52% over the past year, while that sent by Google News has remained roughly static, at around 1.4%.

Facebook has taken its promising Lexicon tool down from the site. Perhaps this happened when they pushed their new redesign. Lexicon, like Google Trends, provided limited yet interesting data on site-wide trends. You can read more about it here. ViralHeat has been around for just over six months, providing a low-price but full-featured social media analysis for the budget minded. ReadWriteWeb chatted with CEO Raj Kadam and founder Vishal Sankhla before relaunch, which unveiled support for Facebook monitoring, a new user interface and API support.

Meanwhile, Google has sent a cease and desist letter to the operators of a Chinese search website whose logo bears a close resemblance to its own. Goojje's home page is adorned with a Google-styled logo and the familiar paw print logo of China's top home-grown search engine, Baidu Inc.

Mr. Friday on mmdays.com discusses how some people create fraudulent facebook fan page using photos of beautiful girls or logos of famous companies like MSN and Google(zh).

Several major publishers are experimenting with Demand Media. Dell, poster child for social commerce, offers a useful 8-step Social Media Guide for businesses (click here for SocialCommerceToday's archived version combining the eight steps into a single downloadable PDF (2MB)).

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