A tale of resurgent poultry, Russia singles out bloggers, Twitter's Q1 earnings disappoint, speculation - and nothing but speculation - around Google+, Foursquare divided by two, data driving marketing, the continued evolution of content marketing, the state of community management, a hidden message in Google's latest patent filing and general doom and gloom for social networks, it's This Week in Digital.
A roundup of relevant links affecting our industry.
Each week, I compose a newsletter that includes a series of links about current events and trends in the worlds of technology, social media, mobile, digital communications and marketing in order to keep leaders up to date on changes, newsworthy items and content that might be useful in their jobs. Subscribe here.
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- To the extent that there can be nostalgia in social media, Burger King is capturing it with a resurrection of SubservientChicken.com. (CNN)
- In advance of its potential record-setting IPO in the US, Chinese ecommerce company Alibaba has acquired Youku, a Chinese version of YouTube, for $1.2 billion. (WSJ and Tech in Asia)
- Russia is cracking down on online critics, passing a law that puts strict rules on bloggers in an effort to lessen opposition to President Vladimir Putin and his policies. (Reuters)
- Facebook held its f8 conference this week, announcing Anonymous Login, giving users the ability to try an app without sharing any of their personal information. (Facebook)
- Other smaller announcements such as Send to Mobile and App Links indicate a more streamlined web experience. (Fast Co Design)
- In an interview, Mark Zuckerberg focused on the evolution of Facebook's relationship with developers, the maturation of the business and integration. (Wired)
- Twitter issued its second earnings report on Tuesday, with disappointing results. While advertising revenue was strong - up 125 percent over last year - its user growth was not as robust, growing only 25 percent last quarter, which was lower than the 30 percent seen in the previous quarter. Twitter's stock dropped by 12 percent at the opening bell on Wednesday. (Bloomberg Businessweek)
- That prompted the same type of speculation around the product's future, just as we saw for Google+ last week, including a Eulogy for Twitter. (The Atlantic)
- Twitter has been considered a strong adjunct for television, but an NBC executive took the wind out of that argument, indicating that television does more for Twitter than vice versa. Twitter CEO Dick Costolo rebutted that argument, saying that there is "a two-way complementary relationship between Twitter and TV." (Financial Times and re/code)
- After last week's news, the media speculated widely about the future of the social layer of Google; but one commentary skewered them all for being veiled opinion pieces that lacked even a single interview with a source at Google. (Ars Technica and Amanda Blain)
- After Vic Gundotra's departure last week, the search giant was seemingly unprepared for the wave of media coverage; having a strong communications plan in place should be a priority. (SHIFT Communications)
- LinkedIn surveyed more than 14,000 senior leaders on its platform from 16 countries and was able to develop the LinkedIn Economic Confidence Outlook for 2014, which is mixed but optimistic. (LinkedIn)
- Snapchat is moving beyond visuals as it adds a chat function, live video, as well as a Stories feature that allows users to create a chronological order of their narratives. (Snapchat)
- Pinterest is launching visual search, in a direct challenge to Google. (Read Write)
- Foursquare will split its app into two: the existing Foursquare app will shed the check-in feature and focus only on exploration and discovery, while the new app, called Swarm, will be a social heatmap that will help users find friends nearby and check in to share their location. (The Verge)
- For those of you following along at home, four squared divided by two equals 8.
- It seems that marketers are getting better response rates on Instagram. But how long with that last, given marketers' proclivity to overdo it on every platform? (WSJ - CMO Today)
- Performance-driven marketing uses data to help build brands and deliver tailored experiences for individual customers. (Google Think)
- Here are five ways listening to social data can help your business, with a helpful analogy that we've all found ourselves in: people who ignore what you've been saying and go on only to talk about themselves. (Econsultancy)
- The 2014 State of Digital and Content Marketing Survey has found that the legal profession is overwhelmed with information, yet in-house counsel still pace great value on lawyer-authored blogs. There is room for well thought-out content strategies for lawyers that follow the principles of corporate journalism. (Greentarget)
- A look deep inside the Coca-Cola newsroom indicates it's very successful. (Contently)
- Content marketing is constantly evolving. In this episode of PNR This Old Marketing podcast, Joe and Robert review changes to Google Analytics, the future of Facebook for marketers, newsrooms and more. (Content Marketing Institute)
- The 5th annual State of Community Management Report has been published. Findings indicate that standardization is still a ways off, but there is considerable more maturity in the market than previously seen. (Community Roundtable)
- This may seem overly technical, but it's extremely important to read. A patent filed by Google indicated something critical that data sleuth Christopher Penn pulled out: that part of Google's algorithm for SEO includes implied links to brands - i.e., mentions of brands in media stories. (SHIFT Communications)
- Between the hyperbolic death watch of Google+, the lackluster growth of Twitter and Facebook's unbundling strategy, it shouldn't be a surprise to come across a piece that delves into why the social networks are falling apart. But are they? (Computerworld)
- Jimmy Fallon is notorious for staging Lip Sync Battles with some of his guests. This week he met his match in Emma Stone and the video racked up over 5 million views in two days - and nearly 11 million at the time of publishing this piece.
Image credit: "Spirit" by Thomas Hawk (Flickr)