Money & Business

Wednesday Buzz: Lessons From Internet Hoaxes

By / Nov 4, 2015 (iStock/Thinkstock)

What do attitudes about chain letters tell us about internet users? Plus: the desks of productivity experts.

Fake stories and chain letters have had a place on the internet for decades. These hoaxes have skyrocketed with the boom in social media, and marketers are examining how internet users respond to them to figure out how users tick.

One of the most common themes of “chain posts” on social media is concern about privacy and data protection. CMSWire’s Tom Petrocelli recalls a number of his colleagues reposting a formatted letter on Facebook, letting the world know the social media giant did not have their permissions to use their photos and information.

This misunderstanding over intellectual property rights is a huge tendency for internet users, and is something organizations should be wary of. It’s important to remember, for example, that while reposting content from members may not legally be theft, some users may have a different idea.

Paranoia is another big factor for why internet hoaxes are so popular. According to the Petrocelli, many people have an inherent distrust of how internet companies use consumer data, yet they can’t imagine living without social media. So they go on high alert for suspicious activity instead of shutting down their accounts. This means marketers should step lightly and use personalization sparingly at best.

Tweet of the Day

It can be hard for startups to break into their industry, and the Application Developers Alliance wants to help. If you’re in New York City on Thursday, the organization’s latest workshop, featuring a panel of startup and small business entrepreneurs, could be a great way to learn how best to develop an app that will put your organization into the hands of your audience.

Other Good Reads

In honor of Veterans Day, one organization hopes to preserve a war relic. See how a NASA engineer and the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration studied and documented one of the crashed planes of the Tuskegee Airmen in the waters of Lake Huron.

Do you have a productive work environment? Stephanie Vozza of Fast Company takes a look at what productivity experts have on their desks.

Demand for video content is overwhelming, but is your organization using it effectively? Kyle Harper of Skyword details a new study on key trends in online video.

Eli Zimmerman

Eli is studying Journalism at the University of Maryland. When not studying, he likes to relax with a nice book or a couple rounds at the local boxing gym. More »

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