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  • Mobile network, broadcaster team up for neat location-based game

    This is clever. African mobile giant Vodacom has teamed with broadcasting house Primedia for a social, GPS-based game called Gotcha. The game will see listeners from the South African cities of Johannesburg and Cape Town chase down a virtual wallet, called Smart Money, in an attempt to win a share of R700 000. Here's how it works. You download the "Gotcha" app on your GPS-enabled smartphone. The app allows you to track Smart Money down to within 100 metres. Whoever has the digital wallet at the right time wins the cash. Once you've got the digital wallet,...

  • 3 very important things you need to understand about user experience

    It’s safe to say that we have all heard the phrases “UX” and “user experience” being used in conversation. Although people are beginning understand the value of providing a good user experience, they don’t necessarily understand what it is or how it works. In a nutshell, user experience is a concept or approach that is applied at all interaction points with your customer. It’s all about putting the user first, understanding their needs, and building a positive relationship with them. So why is this important? The benefits are infinite; some are immediate and some are indirect, only realised after...

  • Is there really a solution to racism on Twitter?

    In the 1700s radical French journalist Jean-Paul Marat used the power of his pen and his influence in the media as a vessel to channel his political passion and to rally the masses, in effect contributing greatly to the French revolution. Today, 'Marat-figures' take on different forms. When social networks aren't used as leverage to topple governments or to keep valuable relationships intact, they also serve as an everyday repository of information. Social networks have been cursed by a degree of responsibility towards the flow of information. To complicate matters even more, questions about anonymity, freedom of speech and hate-speech...

  • Understanding how politicians use Twitter: a case study

    Social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter have fundamentally changed the nature of political discussion. They allow the common person to add his or her voice to the issues that are important to them and to connect with important decision-makers that might otherwise be out of their reach. Twitter has had a particularly profound effect on political discourse, even in emerging market countries like South Africa. In that country, this has been especially true for opposition leader Helen Zille, who has used Twitter to connect with her supporters and to clearly articulate her stance on contentious issues. Following in...

  • The gadgets and gear of The Dark Knight Rises

    Batman’s toys haven’t always been well advised. Who remembers the infamous credit card from Batman and Robin? Or the ridiculous ice skates that miraculously appear during an encounter with Mr Freeze? Hell, let’s not dwell on the nipples the Batsuit sports during Joel Schumacher’s films. With Christopher Nolan at the helm however, Batman was became an icon we could actually believe in: a trained samurai who adopts theatricality and disguise to defeat his foes. His gadgets were similarly immersed in the real world. Read more on Gearburn.com var vglnk={key:"cc324b6567a9637aa0ff15bc9564b2a5"};!function(e,a){var t=e.createElement(a);t.type="text/javascript",t.async=!0,t.src="//cdn.viglink.com/api/vglnk.js";var n=e.getElementsByTagName(a);n.parentNode.insertBefore(t,n)}(document,"script");

  • Business Day goes ‘digital first’, erects paywall

    Business Day, a leading South African newspaper, is set to make the leap from "paper first" to "digital first" before eventually erecting a paywall around its content. According to the paper's editor Peter Bruce: Business Day will, very soon now, become a "digital first" news brand. We will begin to publish what we know when we know it on our newly designed website first, and make the newspaper after that. Then, a few months after that we’ll wrap a mesh around the website and the applications (apps, they’re called) we have on iPhones and iPads and our stories --...

  • SA fashion retailer launches online store

    Ecommerce in South Africa is gaining traction with new ecommerce plays entering and exiting the market more and more frequently. Last year retail outlet Woolworths launched an online store for its fashion line, becoming one of the first major South African retailer to enter the ecommerce space. Now another chain retailer has joined the party. Affordable fashion retail outlet Mr Price's online store went live today under the moniker MRP. We are live!! #mrponline Woohoooo— Mr Price Fashion (@MrPriceFashion) July 30, 2012 The publicly traded retail company announced its plans for an online store earlier this year as an attempt to...

  • Sina Weibo went crazy for Olympic opening ceremony: 119m messages sent

    Turns out users of Chinese microblogging service Sina Weibo took to the first ever "social Olympics" with a gusto. During the opening ceremony alone, members of the social network sent 119-million messages. In an official infographic, Sina Weibo details the total number of messages sent on the opening day of the games, as well as the most active locations and most spoken about topics. It is unclear what criteria were used, although it's likely that reposts and comments were included. As was to be expected, the vast majority -- some 114-million -- messages came from China, while the UK...

  • Facebook and Google: what earnings calls can teach us about tech giants

    Earnings calls underscore some of the strategies being deployed in the tech industry. Take Zynga's Q2 earnings for example: announcing that it lost US$22.8-million, or three cents per share. In the same Quarter last year, it earned US$1.4-million a year ago. At one stage, shares were down a whopping 38%. These numbers are hardly surprising, seeing as Zynga is notorious for copying competitor games and generally being unethical in the industry. It also went rather gung-ho into acquiring OMGPOP, the maker of Draw Something. When last did you play that? One of the worst things to happen to Facebook...

  • 8 great ads that’ll get you psyched for the Olympics

    We’ve already brought you our pick of historic Olympic moments that will make you cringe and cry, now here are some great Olympic advertising moments that will inspire and excite you instead. Olympic rules regarding sponsorships and brand associations with the event are very strict, so the official sponsors have, by and large, produced the best campaigns we've seen and you’ll probably see a lot more of them in the coming weeks all over the world. A few cheeky competitors have also cashed in on the spirit. Bring on London 2012! Philip is here (again). 1. P&G -- Best Job Proctor & Gamble...

  • 11 (possibly) gaffe-worthy athletes to follow during the Olympic Games

    As is the case with every major international event in the last two to three years, in which Twitter has achieved its full enmeshment into popular culture, we yet again are being promised that this Olympics will be the most tweeted event of all time. Really? Yeah, well, colour me bored. Sure the London Games set to kick off today will, in partnership with US broadcaster NBC, be officially “curated” by Twitter. This means that millions of tweets from, in addition to less interesting people, the stars of the show, the athletes themselves, will be available on a single page....

  • 4 types of people who are least likely to engage with your brand online

    Many Memeburn readers are considered "social media gurus", most often by themselves. A "social media guru" is kind of like being a spiritual guru, except instead of devoting your life to the quest for enlightenment, you devote it to trying to make big brands look good online. I am not making fun of these people, in fact I am one myself. I was recently ordained to official guru status by his holiness, Śri Sathya Dave Duarte after staring at the screen of my Macbook for seven days, until I had a godlike marketing awakening. My awakening was this: to...

  • The Sable Accelerator: A gateway into Silicon Valley for SA startups

    With the imminent launch of The Sable Accelerator, South African businesses look set to benefit from a new network of advisers and investors based in Silicon Valley and London that can help with international expansion. Founded by South Africans now living abroad, The Sable Accelerator is backed by angel investors, CEOs, directors and consultants from companies such as McCann Erickson, Grant Thornton, McKinsey and Hasso Plattner Ventures Africa. According to Tech Central, Vinny Lingham, founder of Yola and more recently Gyft -- check out Ventureburn’s exclusive peek at Gyft -- is also onboard as an investor. Read more at Ventureburn.comvar vglnk={key:"cc324b6567a9637aa0ff15bc9564b2a5"};!function(e,a){var...

  • What 6 members of the Digerati make of Google Fiber

    With the launch of Google Fiber, we think it's safe to say that never before has Kansas City Missouri seemed more of an attractive destination. With a gigabit network -- think 100 times faster than today's average broadband -- we're about to have a vicarious look into what the future holds for the rest of us, as about 500 000 people log onto Google's new network. While we wait to see if Google Fiber manages to upend the telecommunications and broadcasting industry with its cost saving DIY approach, we collected some opinions from the digerati. For more on Google Fibre check...

  • Sir Tim Berners-Lee’s epic Olympics ceremony tweet

    Proving that the internet is truly a part of great world events, father of the world wide web, Sir Tim Berners-Lee made an appearance at the opening ceremony of this year's Olympic Games in London. The man, known as the inventor of the web, also tweeted during his appearance. His tweet was displayed around the stadium, with the letters made up of 'pixel' squares set up alongside seats. With close to one-billion people watching, that's what we call a tweet with reach! This is for everyone #london2012 #oneweb #openingceremony @webfoundation @w3c— Tim Berners-Lee (@timberners_lee) July 27, 2012 Berners-Lee is currently working...