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Tag: text

Facebook predicts the end of text. Fail

Friday, 17 June, 2016 0 Comments

After 2020, Facebook “will be definitely mobile, it will be probably all video,” said Nicola Mendelsohn, head of Facebook’s operations in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, at a conference in London on Tuesday. Mendelsohn even suggested that the written word will be replaced by moving images and sound:

“The best way to tell stories in this world, where so much information is coming at us, actually is video,” Mendelsohn said. “It conveys so much more information in a much quicker period. So actually the trend helps us to digest much more information.”

Does it? Facebook is said to be hosting eight billion views a day on its platform, but most of that is happening in silence. Millennial news site Mic, which is averaging 150 million monthly Facebook views, said 85 percent of its 30-second views are without sound, while PopSugar says its silent video views range between 50 and 80 percent. Note: Facebook counts a view at three seconds.

The result is that publishers are now creating videos that have the same look and feel and they increasingly feature text that does the talking, as it were. This Facebook video about a futuristic bike features visuals with a text explanation of the content. Prediction: Text will outlive Facebook and cat videos.


Felix Salmon gets promiscuous and goes post-text

Thursday, 24 April, 2014 0 Comments

“Text has had an amazing run, online, not least because it’s easy and cheap to produce,” says @felixsalmon, who is leaving Reuters and joining Fusion. Back in May last year, Salmon wrote about what he calls Promiscuous media, in which he exhorted: “Let content live where it works best; that way, the publishers of that content will be able to present something with maximal coherence and a minimum of feeling that they’re trying to do something they’re not particularly good at. The publishers who win are going to be the ones with addictive, compelling, distinctive content.”

At Fusion, Salmon will be putting this commandment into action: “If our audience is on Instagram, we’ll make 15-second videos for them on Instagram. If they’re on Upworthy or BuzzFeed or Vox or even Snapchat, we’ll try to find a way to reach them there, too. It’s what I call promiscuous media: put everything where it works best.”

In order of priority, Fusion defines itself as “Pop culture. Satire. News.” It is the future of digital content, probably.


Fingered speech

Tuesday, 5 March, 2013 0 Comments

One of the specialties of radical thinker and linguist John McWhorter is how the grammar of languages changes as the result of socio-historical phenomena, such as the pervasive use of mobile phones. Texting is a kind of writing like talking, says McWhorter, who calls it “fingered speech”.