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NewFacebookLogoFacebook Sued for Allegedly Intercepting Private Messages (CNET)
Facebook is facing a class action lawsuit for allegedly violating its members’ right to privacy. The social network is being sued by members who claim that the company intercepts private messages, without consent, to mine the data for its own profit. Bloomberg When users compose messages that include links to a third-party website, Facebook scans the content of the message, follows the link and searches for information to profile the message-sender’s Web activity, violating the Electronic Communications Privacy Act and California privacy and unfair competition laws, according to the suit. The practice compromises privacy and undermines Facebook’s promise of “unprecedented” security options for its messaging function, two Facebook users said in the complaint filed in federal court in San Jose, Calif. Business Insider Matt Campbell, author of the left-leaning muckraking site the Blue Hog Report, is suing the tech giant alongside co-plaintiff Michael Hurley, an Oregon resident who was unavailable for comment. The core of their complaint concerns the access advertisers have to messages. An advertiser can only send ads to a user if that user has some connection to the brand in question. The Next Web The plaintiffs state that the evidence of Facebook’s actions are all done without users’ consent. They are seeking the ability to make this a “class-action” lawsuit and are hoping the judge will award them statutory damages of $ 100 a day for each day of violation of the Electronics Communication Privacy Act, and $ 5,000 or three times the amount of actual damages sustained by the plaintiffs. Of course, they’re demanding Facebook cease its interception of messages. Los Angeles Times Jackie Rooney, a spokeswoman for Facebook, said the allegations are “without merit.” “We will defend ourselves vigorously,” she said in an emailed statement.

YouTube Reveals 4K Video Streaming Plans Ahead of CES (VentureBeat)
YouTube has revealed to GigaOM that it will be showing off 4K video streaming using its VP9 video codex at next week’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. The 4K format is roughly four times higher resolution than regular HD (3,840-by-2,160 pixels vs. 1,920-by-1,080 pixels).

Flipagram is About to Take Over Your Facebook News Feed (AllFacebook)
Flipagram enables you to make short “video stories” — image slideshows with soundtracks of your choice. Videos are between 15 and 30 seconds long, and you can pull photos from Facebook, Instagram, and your phone.

James Blunt Teases His Twitter Haters (TIME)
James Blunt took on a year’s worth of haters on Twitter, attacking, deflecting and disarming them with a skillful blend of wit and self-deprecation. The Poke compiled a list of his 30 best counterattacks, declaring him “winner” of Twitter in 2013.

Curate and Organize Your Social Media Content With Twine Social (SocialTimes)
Ever thought how useful it would be to collect all your brand’s content in one place? With TwineSocial, you can. Originally created by Aaron Fessler as an in-house curation tool for his car-driving experience company, the platform works by pulling content from social media — using @usernames, hashtags, location data and more. Or less, if you’d prefer to narrow it down.

Social Networks and Social Media in Ukrainian “Euromaidan” Protests (The Washington Post)
Ukrainian activists, local and international news media, as well as political scientists, have pointed out the importance of social media in the recent “Euromaidan” protests in Ukraine. Many reports have credited initial tweets by journalists and activists as the key mechanism that brought hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians out into the streets.

The 20 Most Popular Brands on Twitter [Stats] (AllTwitter)
@YouTube remains the top, most-followed brand on Twitter, with its close to 38 million followers placing it well ahead of all other brands, including the official @Twitter profile. Indeed, @Twitter isn’t even second on its own network – that space has long been reserved for @Instagram, although both are some distance behind @YouTube.

Municipalities and Social Media: Creating Hubs of Information (Utica Observer-Dispatch)
Several municipalities have social media pages, primarily Facebook, to serve as hubs for information on town hall meetings, events and other goings on. Some are managed by officials and some are set up by those not necessarily working for the municipality.

2014 NHL Winter Classic to Likely Be Highest Rated, Most Social (and Snowiest?) Yet (LostRemote)
The Winter Classics have been among the highest-rated NHL regular season games, and the trend will likely continue this year, with the Detroit Red Wings vs. Toronto Maple Leafs game being held at Michigan Stadium. The game will likely be a top trending topic on Twitter and across social platforms.

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