Thursday, August 19, 2010

News Flash: Facebook announce Facebook Places

Facebook have just launched their geolocation service, Facebook Places in the US. Read about it on the Facebook Blog here: Partnering with sites which offer similar service: Gowalla, Yelp, FourAquare, Booyah.

The Flashlight team thought it was quite amusing that: ZDNet described the news as 'the worst kept secret since, Apple's iPhone 4'.

The app will allow Facebook users to provide real time update of their location to their network of friends within Facebook, whilst they are on the move. Initially the service will only be available as an iPhone app and through the website - which works well on Android and other smartphones.

One of our favourite things and in the same breath not so favourite things, about Facebook Places is that you can also tag your friends if they are in the same location in a photo or via status updates.

In relation to above point (not so favourite) we all know that Facebook have been critised in the past for privacy features. Well this time round Facebook are making it very clear about the opt in and out features, available on the app. You can even turn off the 'let my friends' check me in feature too.

Facebook are hoping that developers (like us) will soon take note of this and begin to build 3rd party applications to take advantage of the location data available. Time will tell, as we haven't had news when it will reach the UK yet.

For more information, then Mashable have written a fantastic comprehensive guide to Facebook places here, go check it out.

Author: Sarah Griffiths

Thursday, August 05, 2010

Geek Video of the month

As we are big fans of gaming here at Rocktime, we thought to share with you this new and bordering on ridiculous (health and safety!!) but cool way of turning your chair into a gaming experience with motion. I wonder whether Alex will allow us to build one of these in the office? This video is playing a F1 game, makes me feel quite queasy but wins Geek Video of the month.

Thursday, August 05, 2010

Google Adwords Trademark Policy Update

Yesterday the Flashlight team were discussing Google's announcement of changes to their Google Adwords trademark policy, reviewing how it affects us in the UK.

In a nutshell, Google will no longer prevent advertisers from selecting a third party’s trade mark as a keyword.

There are still restrictions for using a trade mark as a keyword in your advert text. You can put in a complaint to Google if you believe that a third party, using your trademark keyword in the advert text, is confusing customers. For example if a Nike affiliate wrote an advert with the title “Official Nike Store” then Nike would have a reason to complain.

Google say their goal is:

“To provide our users with the most relevant information, whether from search results or advertisements, and we believe that users benefit from having more choice”

If you are running an 'adwords campaign', upon understanding the policy update, then we would suggest you then consider how the 'new key-phrases' could fit into your campaigns and after implementation, review whether it improves the overall advert click through rate and conversions.

To find out more and to see examples about this change, view the Update to Adwords Trademark Policy here or talk to the Flashlight Team.