Social networks

Bradley Horowitz with his wife Irene Au

Bradley Horowitz is the new head of Google+ and announced various changes to Google’s social network. The platform will be split into separate areas where the Photos service will be devoted to image management, Streams will keep Google+ core and Hangouts while the service that should be devoted to audio / video communications and the classic text messaging.

Yesterday, when it was early morning in the USA, Facebook started having problems. Suddenly it became impossible to update your status or write anything in groups and pages and even use the “Like” function. Soon, on other social networks, mainly Twitter, messages were posted showing panic but also irony and #facebookdown was very trendy among the hashtags. After a few hours the fault was fixed and the situation slowly went back to normal.

The nucleus accumbens circled in red in the MRI scan of a human brain

A research carried out at the Free University of Berlin (Freie Universität Berlin) and published in “Frontiers in Human Neuroscience” analyzed the effects of Facebook on the human brain. 31 subjects were examined using magnetic resonance imaging while (MRI) while they watched pictures of themselves or other people accompanied by positive comments.

Following a class action, the U.S. federal judge Richard Seeborg ruled that Facebook will pay a total of $20 million to compensate a group of users. Their faces were used without their consent as testimonials of the advertising program “Sponsor stories” in 2011. However, in the end each of the 614,000 users who entered the class action will receive $15 only.

Yahoo! CEO Marissa Mayer announced that the company has reached an agreement to purchase the multimedia social microblogging service Tumblr for $1.1 billion which will be paid all in cash. One of the first questions was about the future of Flickr, the pictures and videos hosting service acquired by Yahoo! in 2005. Well, a few hours later Marissa Mayer announced that the site has been improved and now every user will have a Terabyte of free space.