Today in Tech: Is Twitter at a crossroads?August 1, 2012: 5:00 AM ET
Spotify reports 4 million paid subscribers; Google delays the Nexus Q's official release.
The fallacy of social networking [ELSUA.NET]
So we are starting to see how a good number of hierarchies in social networks are emerging where there are two different types of social interactions: knowledge workers interacting with one another and executives and top managers doing the same, but in a meaningful way just amongst themselves, clearly demonstrating how they are still clinging to their long time standing command-and-control mentality of not releasing that information, therefore, that power, because of fear they may get displaced along the way with the democratisation social networks have been enjoying all along. Talking about that much needed shift on Leadership, don't you think?
As Jeff Jarvis and Dan Gillmor and others have noted, regardless of the details of this specific case, it seems like a defining moment for Twitter: the network that has bragged in the past about being the "free-speech wing of the free-speech party" now looks to be censoring journalists who criticize the company's corporate partners. How the company decides to handle this incident will speak volumes about where Twitter's future lies.
But Tuesday, Google (GOOG, Fortune 500) officially "friended" Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg's sister, Arielle Zuckerberg, when it acquired Wildfire, the social ads marketing firm she works at. "Congrats Wildfire! There are officially now more Zuckerberg family members working for Google than Facebook! #awkward ;)," sister Randi Zuckerberg blasted off in a tweet, alluding to the possibility that another member of their family is a Google employee.
He explained how, in the 90s, Apple was very close to bankruptcy and that "you learn a lot about vital corporations through non-vital corporations". When Steve Jobs returned to the company in 1997, his focus was not on making money -- "His observation was that the products weren't good enough. His resolve was to make better products." This was a different approach from other attempts to turn the company around, which had focused first and foremost on cost savings and revenue generation.
It's not all bad news for those who pre-ordered, however: Google has informed us that those who did reserve the device will be receiving the device in its current form for free. This unit is what we reviewed and what was given out to Google I/O attendees last month, and it is now being called a "preview" device. It's unknown whether or not these preview devices will be upgradable down the line, but Google says that it will be sending out the Nexus Q dev units to pre-order customers "soon."
It would be interesting to see a breakdown of these figures from around the world, but it's probably fair to say that Spotify's launch in the US last summer has had a significant part to play in this recent growth spurt. And it also represents a growth of 1m paying subscribers since January, when the company reported 3m paying members – though curiously, this was said to constitute one fifth of its active users, which means it would've had 15m active users then too.