Weekly Social Pulse, Week of 4/2

Finstagram: Life is never as good as it looks on social media. So now teens who are tired of the “success theater” of Instagram are creating a secondary account, known as a “Finstagram,” to express themselves privately – no makeup or dirty dishes in the sink (GASP). We really enjoyed this Art19 podcast featuring insights from young people and model Paris Sanders talking about this cultural reaction to traditional social media. (LINK)

Millennials May Have Improved English: There are LOTS of memes about all the things Millennials have ruined… but it turns out that their disregard for traditional grammar may have improved written English. A researcher from the University of Manchester says the use of deliberately misspelled words or misused grammar can convey tone, nuance, humor, EVEN ANNOYANCE with atypical capitalization, ellipsis, or a complete lack of punctuation. For example, using a period (a.k.a. a full stop) at the end of a sentence “indicates that you are cross.” kthxbai (LINK)

Snap adds Group Video Calls: This week Snapchat introduced a new group video chat feature, letting users chat with up to 16 of their closest friends via video. Or up to 32 via audio! Just tap the video icon in a group chat to get started, or start up a call with a few people and invite new friends to join. And yes, the lenses work with all 16 people. (LINK)

Amazon’s ‘Voice Sniffer Algorithm’: Don’t panic yet, but new patent filings show Amazon is looking to use their Echo smart speaker to not only listen once you say “Alexa,” but to be always listening and analyzing what’s being said. Called the voice sniffer algorithm, the idea is to better understand users and their personalities. For example, it could hear words like “prefer” and “bought” or “hate” or “disliked,” and then use that to judge interest levels in various products. We’ll be watching this closely to see if the public has any appetite for this kind of always-on listening in their homes.  (LINK)

Memes of the Week: The Monterey Bay Aquarium took the American Chopper Argument Meme to the next level today. And Mason Ramsey, the 10-year-old who’s been dubbed “Walmart boy” and “Walmart kid,” broke the internet this week with his cowboy getup and yodeling skills. And the internet did what it does – remixes!! Please enjoy these with your coworkers at full volume: Remix 1, Remix 2, Remix 3, Remix 4, Remix 5, and Bonus 1 Hour Remix Version