Simona Bostan

Simona Bostan

Simona is coming from a financial background, finishing her BA in Banking and Finance. She started to get into the Igaming World as a Customer Care Agent with Unibet in 2007.

Always seeking to optimize her work she left Unibet and joined Freespin Casino as an Affiliate Executive where she learned all the tricks of the trade.

With her move to B3W in 2010 she used her accumulated knowledge and designed a custom made Affiliate System for B3W.

She has a vast knowledge in SEO and Optimize Affiliate Marketing for Clients, bring new Affiliates to the Client, negotiate deals, motivate an existing portfolio of Affiliates, optimize and develop their performance to maximize player traffic, networking.

Paper – Facebook’s New News-Reading App for iPhone

Social media giant Facebook has now launched Paper for iPhone. Paper is Facebook’s app for news reading. This app has been launched to compete with Flipboard. This new app is slated for release on 3rd February 2014 in America. Paper is positioned as an app that will be enhance the user experience especially with regards to pictures, videos and interaction from the users perspective. Some of the world’s most credible news sources will be utilized by the app to pull news content.

Flipboard is an aggregator of news that presents it in the form of layout of that of a magazine. Facebook has positioned Paper to compete against Flipboard. The estimated user base of Flipboard is around 85 million.  Flipboard is currently valued at $800m. With the help of Paper, Facebook users will be able to read their news feed without clutter and in a more streamlined manner.

 

With Paper, Facebook users will also be able to post stories directly to Facebook with the help of its new editor that looks like contemporary web publishing tool permitting users to see their posts before they are published. Paper is the first new product to emerge out of the company’s new brand – Create Labs. As of now there is no information about the release of Paper on android and other platforms.

 

 

LinkedIn Files Lawsuit Against Unidentified Hackers

After being subject to an attack from hackers, in which they created several fake accounts to “scrape” data of profile. As per the documents in the public domain, this attack was a result of several bots (automated) via computers that were leased from Amazon.

The legal counsel of LinkedIn have stated it cost the company $5,000 in the process of tackling the hackers.  The lawsuit was filed at the Northern District of California court.

LinkedIn’s statement to the court has stated the following:

"Since May 2013, unknown persons and/or entities employing various automated software programs (often referred to as "bots") have registered thousands of fake LinkedIn member accounts and have extracted and copied data from many member profile pages. This practice, known as data 'scraping,' is explicitly barred by LinkedIn's User Agreement, which prohibits access to LinkedIn through scraping, spidering, crawling or other technology or software used to access data without the express written consent of LinkedIn or its Members."

LinkedIn’s spokesperson Richard George said:

“We’re a members-first organization and we feel we have a responsibility to protect the control that our members have over the information they put on LinkedIn.”

There is no evidence that can specifically identify the hackers but the company claims the attack was carried out via Amazon’s Elastic Compute Cloud. The motive of the hackers is not understood as yet but LinkedIn claims that damage that has caused the company is not reparable.

Is It Finally Time For Twitter To Deal With Abusive Trolls?

It is a well-known fact that Twitter has given birth to “keyboard warriors” off late. These are users that abuse celebrities or other Twitter users. Sometimes this borders on criminality, as the abuse can be racial in nature. In other cases people have been found threatening other users with death and violence. Twitter and social media is a place where opinion makers are now using to tap into an audience. Trolls are using it to launch attacks on people with different opinions to theirs. 

Hence the question keeps arising whether Twitter should devise a policy where abuses, racist comments and death threats should be a strict non-negotiable when it comes to their policy. It is no longer social networking when a nameless and faceless stranger for making a comment or opinion contrary to theirs abuses you on a public platform.

The latest high-profile case of abuse and racism on Twitter emerged on January 21 when a user began racial abusing ex-footballer Stan Collymore. This then snowballed into a huge controversy when CNN’s chat show host, Piers Morgan leapt to the defense of Collymore. Piers Morgan was abused by the same user and was sent a death threat via a tweet.

Piers Morgan then went after the user whose name was  @philliplad by asking his 3.9 million users if they knew him or had any information about him. Morgan apparently got some information about the user. He then tweeted to Facebook co-founder Jack Dorsey about the same incident. 

 

Piers Morgan then went on to report the offender/s to the Metropolitan Police of the UK, as he was a UK twitter user. The offender however continued to taunt Morgan despite knowing well what he said was a criminal offense. 

The entire saga was played out on Twitter. It happened as stated below:

 

Timeline

Jan 21

@PhilippLad @piersmorgan @StanCollymore He's a cotton field n****r, you're a fat c***. both deserve a horrible and painful death

@piersmorgan Jan 21

Who is @PhilippLad ? Let's see how big, tough and racist he's feeling by the time I've finished with him.

Piers Morgan ‏@piersmorgan Jan 21

The law is crystal clear...racially abusing someone & making death threats are both crimes in the UK. As @PhilippLad will soon discover.

Hi @Twitter - this person > @PhilippLad  is making death threats & racially abusing people on his timeline. I suggest you do something.

Hi @metpoliceuk - this person > @PhilippLad is making death threats & racially abusing people on his timeline. I suggest you do something.

Piers Morgan ‏@piersmorgan Jan 21

Anyone who knows @PhilippLad please contact me. I'm going to wipe the ugly, vile smirk off his racist little face.

Piers Morgan ‏@piersmorgan Jan 21

Hi @TwitterUK - this person > @PhilippLad  is making death threats & racially abusing people on his timeline. I suggest you do something.

Piers Morgan ‏@piersmorgan Jan 21

Hi @jack - this person > @PhilippLad is making death threats & racially abusing people on his timeline. Over to you.

@PhilippLad he'll get me suspended, but he's not going to 'catch me' lmao

@PhilippLad You promised to catch me @piersmorgan, How stupid of you lmao

@WMPolice We can confirm @StaffsPolice are investigating alleged abusive tweets to @StanCollymore.

CONFIRMED: Police investigating vile racist death threats to @StanCollymore

Piers Morgan ‏@piersmorgan Jan 21

I'll now leave @StaffsPolice to do their job. Racist taunts & death threats both criminal offenses. The culprits will be dealt with.

 

Twitter then suspended the accounts of the offenders and the Straffordshire Police is now investigating the case of racism and abuse. Hence this raises the broader question of whether there must be some sort of verification or filter for Twitter users. The current system is giving rise to a lot of negativity and lowering down the public discourse to a whole new low.

Thursday, 23 January 2014 18:36

Facebook May Be Doomed By 2017

Facebook May Be Doomed By 2017 

Latest report emerging out have suggested that social media giant Facebook may lose up to 80% of its users in the year 2017. This surely is bad news for the company especially after the emergence of new sites like Snapchat. 

Scholars at Princeton University carried out this latest research that projected the 80% decline in the Facebook user base. The research has made use of the Google Trends, which indicate the most searched topics and have concluded a steep decline in the interest shown by users. 

 

"Facebook has already reached the peak of its popularity and has entered a decline phase. The future suggests that Facebook will undergo a rapid decline in the coming years, losing 80 percent of its peak user base between 2015 and 2017. Eventually, users begin to leave and recovery spreads infectiously as users begin to lose interest in the social network "

 

As of today, Facebook is valued at $139 billion and is accessed by more than a billion users across the globe. The search trends from the research as shown a nice analogy with what happened in the case of MySpace. It peaked in 2008 before it crashed eventually. Even Facebook now has peaked in December 2012 and is expected to decline by 2017.

As per the research report, most people that create accounts on social media sites lose interest after a few years. This report has placed together trends shown by other prominent sites that peaked and crashed eventually. 

Professor Daniel Miller from University College of London has predicted that Facebook’s eventual replacement will come in the form of Twitter and Snapchat. 

London Affiliate Conference 6th - 9th of February

Every Year, iGaming Affiliates, payment providers, iGaming Consultancy companies and Operators are gathering together in London for LAC.

The London Affiliate Conference was a huge success last year, with over 3,000 people in attendance.

This year, for the 8th London Affiliate Conference there will be loads of exhibitions and networking events and hopefully more than 3,000 people will join.

The iGB Affiliate Awards will be held during LAC and Simka Consulting has been nominated this year for the 'Best Bingo Affiliate' award.

The Financial Partners Expo will also be taking place alongside LAC 2014. This one day event, taking place on the 6th February 2014, is the largest dedicated expo for affiliates and introducing brokers within the retail finance sector. 

 

Exhibition Venue 

Having out grown Old Billingsgate this year LAC is moved to Earls Court Brompton Hall. This new larger space will allow exhibitors and sponsors a multitude of exciting new opportunities.  

For more information about the event click here.

 

Top 5 Social Media Acquisitions In The Year Gone By

Mergers and acquisitions are not as rare as they used to be a few years back. Brands are collaborating with each other more than ever and this trend of acquiring a start-up with promise is here to stay. When it comes to social media, companies are constantly on the lookout for the best brands that could take the social universe my storm. We have seen the sudden eruption in the number of social apps and games being developed by companies in hope of them being acquired by the industry bigwigs. Here on this blog post, we review the Top 5 social media acquisitions of the year-gone bye.

Yahoo’s acquisition of Tumblr

Yahoo acquired Blogging site Tumblr in 2013. Tumblr is platform that allows and has access to an audience of younger demographic. This acquisition will boost the audience of Yahoo and help them deliver better content to readers. 

Twitter’s acquisition of MoPub

2013 was a great year for Twitter, not only did they go public but they surged ahead of their traditional social media rival Facebook.  MoPub is a mobile ad network and it is clear from this move that Twitter will encourage advertising and add as many revenue streams to their business model as possible.

Twitter’s acquisition of Vine

Vine really took the world by surprise in 2013. This short video sharing site was a rage and Twitter realized its potential really soon. Instagram and Facebook then replicated this unique offering of video sharing on social media sites as well.

Facebook’s acquisition of Atlas

Facebook acquired ad analytics site Altas. Since ads are Facebook’s only source of revenue, they adopted an approach for greater intelligence to govern the visibility and pricing of their ads in 2013. This is a valuable acquisition that will them ad value to their ad solutions.

LinkedIn’s acquisition of Pulse

LinkedIn acquired “news reader” site Pulse in 2013. This move was aimed at improving and expanding the content generation ability of LinkedIn 2013. LinkedIn made several changes to their layouts in 2013 as well. Pulse’s acquisition is an attempt by LinkedIn to make certain their users spend more time on the site by reading the news rather than just changing their profile information.

 

There were several other acquisitions of/by social media companies in 2013. The trend is proof that people are now seriously using social media effectively in every sphere of life. This makes companies to adopt newer way to attract new users and hence more buck for advertising.  

Social-Search App Jelly Released By Twitter Co-Founder

Co-founder of popular social media site Twitter, Biz Stone has now released a new social app called Jelly. This app allows people to attach pictures and ask questions to which they get responses from their social networks. 

 

Basically an attempt has been made to integrate Instagram and Quora. If your questions involves “what is this”, all you need to do is take a picture and the app will send this question along with the picture to you social network, mainly, Twitter and Facebook.

 

Biz Stone also announced the release of the Jelly social search app from his Twitter account.

Despite the innovative idea, getting answers to questions is also easy and hassle free on Google, Quora or Facebook or even human interaction for that matter. 

 

The company in a blog has described the app with the following:


“Jelly changes how we find answers because it uses pictures and people in our social networks. It turns out that getting answers from people is very different from retrieving information with algorithms.”

Biz Stone co-founded Jelly along with Ben Finkel. Twitter acquired Fluther, a Q&A service developed by Ben Finkel in 2010. That is when Finkel also joined Twitter. Investor’s of Jelly involve most of the people behind Twitter’s early investments as well as founder of LinkedIn.

Tuesday, 07 January 2014 16:36

Online Marketing Tips for 2014

Online Marketing Tips for 2014

 

Online marketing strategies and tips are all over the interest. The problem is selecting the right ones and implementing them with a hope they would work for your website. In fact, reading about online marketing tips can be quite overwhelming especially if you are a beginner. The usual go to strategy adopted by people is to read a “credible” website or journal to learn about tips and guidelines. Well, that isn’t a bad idea. But even the tips offered by the experts are never full proof. Online marketing strategies work on a case-to-case basis. What works for you might not work for another brand or website. Hence reading too much online can be a pointless exercise.

 

The most simple and efficient approach to implementing an online marketing strategy would involve understanding your requirement. Why are you building a strategy? What is the nature of your website? What is your business goal or objective? These are some really important questions that need to be answered before you begin formulating a strategy. The target market, country, age group and product are what will vary from brand-to-brand. Hence you need to be smart enough to tailor your campaign as per your needs.

 

What is recommended is following some basic guidelines that will hold you in good stead irrespective of parameters influencing your online business. Building the trust of a potential customer is crucial. Hence you need to make sure he has information of your product on every platform. Be it your website, social media, email or newsletters. No customer will jump at the prospect of buying your product or service when he first stumbles upon it.

 

Having a small budget for advertising isn’t a bad idea. This again would depend on the budget you have and the business you run. You can reach a wider audience via social media and search engine advertisements. People spend a lot of time on social media. This is 2014 and the online audience will only increase from this point onwards.

 

The oldest rule of online marketing still stands and this is content is king. There is no substitute for hard work is what you have been hearing right since your school days. In the online world there is no substitute for good content. And hard work also. So make sure you have compelling content that is original and really interesting. Good content gets shared more often than not.

 

You don’t need to depend on social media experts to build a critical mass on Twitter or Facebook. All you need is to stay up to date with the world around you. Yes, that’s all it takes. Don’t always plug the greatness of your product. Tweet about a funny politician or great game that you saw. Not everyone wants to now about your “robust and scalable software”. Make a joke. If you cant think of a joke, copy and past a joke with due credits of course. 

 

Don’t ever try and outsmart Google. Be honest. Don’t resort to shady online marketing practices. Of course, you need to stay in sync with what Google is doing in terms of new updates and algorithms. Go along with Google and don’t run ahead of it. Please Google. Play by the rules they have set. 

6 ways to deal with troublemakers on your Facebook fan page

Job of social media managers is getting tougher by the day. Social media is now slowly turning into this monster that we have created. It is a beast that is increasingly getting difficult to tame. Suddenly people have found a megaphone where they can praise, abuse or even build or break the reputation of a brand or individual. Managing fan pages of companies or brand is a thankless job.

From the perspective of a brand/company, using social media can be a great way to launch or introduce a particular product or service. That can fetch you a lot of bouquets from your fans. But at the same time you need to be prepare for the brickbats as well, especially when a customer finds a certain fault or isn’t happy with your product or service.

 

Probably five years back, such customers would have called the company to inform them about the poor service or faulty product. Some would send an email of course with the odd profanity but it was a one-to-one interaction. In today’s world, the customers use social media to give feedback to companies. 

Everybody has realized there is an audience out there that would be witness to your interaction – good, bad or ugly. They know a company would not want to rink their reputation with multiple eyeballs following a conversation that may appear on the news feed.

This has given birth to another section of social media users – trolls. They are growing by the day and can be a handful to deal with. Basically these are people that will pounce on a post on your fan page for multiple reasons- spelling errors, to make a joke, to abuse or just make certain you don’t have a good day. The anonymity factor plays to their strength.

Hence if you are the manager of fan page for your company or brand on Facebook, you need to make certain there is no harm caused by such users or such users don’t divert the attention of your target audience. You need to act swiftly and without emotions taking over. 

 

Here are some effective ways to deal with troublemakers on your Facebook fan page:

 

1. Hide the comment/post – If there is a comment on your post or on the fan page that isn’t relevant, you can hide the post. The person that has made the comment does not get a notification about the comment being hidden. He/she can still see the comment but the comment isn’t visible to other users. Depending on the reason for hiding that comment, this action can be reversed and you can unhide he comment as and when you like.

 

2. Delete the comment/post – This is similar to the “hide” feature. This would delete the post permanently. The comments however can be brought back. This has a similar effect as the “hide” feature. 

 

3. Report the post/comment  - Facebook gives an option for moderating posts - Report/Mark as Spam. Make use of this option in the case of repeat offenders. Such people intend to disrupt the smooth functioning of the social interaction bet your and the audience. There are options to report such users to Facebook under: explicit content, hate speech, violent behavior etc.

 

4. Reply to the post/comment: Depending on the type of comment/post, sometimes it makes sense to engage in conversation. Depending on what type of brand you have, it makes perfect sense to engage in “banter” with fans.  At times people like seeing the lighter side of the conversation and this actually helps you reach a greater audience.

 

5. Move the conversation outside Facebook – if the concerned person is an honest critic or existing customer with a genuine problem, it would be wise to move the entire conversation to outside Facebook to help him. You can leave a comment with a number or email id whereby the person can give his feedback. This is essential as if your product has a genuine flaw, you would not want the entire world to know it before resolving the issue. 

 

6. Ban user – In case of users that resort to repeated abuse or trolling, it is best to ban them. They are neither your customers nor intend to be in the near future. Instead of wasting time by moderating their comments and post, it is best to get ride of such users.

It is best to deal with troublemakers is a swift and effective manner. Sometimes tiny issues can snowball into an embarrassment for companies and brands. You don’t want a comment that is “liked” by 500 people or a post that is shared 1000 times, especially if it ends up negatively affecting your brand.

Saturday, 04 January 2014 20:18

4.6 Million Users Affected By Snapchat Hack

4.6 Million Users Affected By Snapchat Hack

The news and social media was taken by storm when nearly 4.6 million accounts of social media site Snapchat were accessed by hackers who then went on to post these details online for several hours.

A website names SnapchatDB went ahead and released this information but the last 2 digits of the phone number of users were censored. This user information has been taken down but you still can find the cached version.

This event has occurred after Gibson Securoty, an Australian firm has issued a warning in the app of Snapchat, which could have been abused by the hackers.

Gibson Security released a statement on Twitter that said:

 

"We know nothing about SnapchatDB, but it was a matter of time till something like that happened,"

 

However, the hackers claimed to have used the flaws that were highlighted by Gibson Security as per TechCrunch.

As of today, Snapchat is said to be the social media site of the future and has gained an enormous amount of user base and popularity. Snapchat allows picture sharing. These shared pictures get deleted once they are viewed.

Snapchat also allows users to find friends by means of an address if it has been uploaded in the contacts book. Gibson Security had warned Snapchat of the exact same thing prior to this hack. 

As per the Gibson Security officials, Snapchat had been warned almost four months before this incident but the company did not take any precautionary measures. 

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