Mad Data Science

OkCupid Brags About Manipulating Online Daters in Secret Tests

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After all of the furor over Facebook’s invasive experiments on users’ news feeds, other startups running the same plays had to be thinking: “What do we do now?” In the case of OkCupid, their version of ass-covering is to come out loud and proud about the games they’ve been playing with their users’ hearts.

OkCupid posted a snarky, image-loaded essay on their blog today called “We Experiment On Human Beings!” where they make a list of hijinxes they’ve pulled on their users without them knowing, all in the name of science. In the post, OkCupid cofounder Christian Rudder points to how offended people were that Facebook published a research report based on manipulating users’ news feeds. Read More

Selfie Nation

Woman’s Selfie With Stolen Dress Gets Her Arrested

Dummy. (Photo: KFVS)

When will criminals ever learn?

Over the weekend, the owners of Mortie’s Boutique in Illinois said their store was robbed of a rather distinctive “leopard color dress.” The store’s surveillance video showed a woman breaking into the store and taking several items, including that dress. So, they made a Facebook post to ask if anyone in the apparently small town of West Frankfort had seen the dress. Read More

App for That

You’re Not Popular Enough to Use Facebook’s New App, Nerd

Facebook Mentions user, Austin Mahone. (Photo: iTunes)

Being popular is hard. But being social media popular is really hard.

Facebook released today a new iPhone app called Mentions, but you’re not cool enough to use it. It’s only “verified public figures” — i.e. Katy Perry and others who have a blue check mark next to their names — in an effort by the social network to wean them off competing websites (cough, Twitter, cough) when they feel the urge to overshare. Read More

Selfie Nation

Israelis Can’t Stop Taking ‘Bomb Shelter Selfies’

2014!. (Photo: Facebook)

As the violent conflict between Israel and Gaza continues, Israelis are passing time in the most 2014 way possible: They’re taking selfies.

The new phenomenon, dubbed “bomb shelter selfies” as reported by the Jerusalem Post, is a group picture of smiling people waiting out their time until the missile warning sirens stop emitting their terrifying noise. A Facebook group dedicated to the trend has amassed more than 1,500 likes in the past few days. Read More