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Social Media Week in Review: What you may have missed

Since it's so hard to keep up with everything that's shared on social media, here's a weekly guide to things that may have passed you by.

Bot or Not tries to guess whether a Twitter account might be run by a robot and not a human. (Credit: Bot or Not / Screenshot by Sree Sreenivasan/CNET)

Another week has flown by in social-media land, which means, you--and I--have missed a lot of developments, new products, etc. Most of them, of course, don't matter, but these Week in Review posts are meant to help you catch-up with the ones that do. Each weekend, you can help by posting links in the comments section or e-mailing me at or Tweeting with @sree or #sreetips.

First stop: Mashable's 34 Digital Media Resources You May Have Missed by Matt Petronzio (@MattPetronzio) is where I go to catch up with the best of what that site posted during the week. The two articles I tweeted from that list: 8 Free Apps for Planning Your Perfect Night Out by Jeremy Cabalona (@JeremyCabalona) and 10 Free Android Apps You'll Use Every Day by Christine Erickson (@ChristineErickson). Just so iPhone users won't feel left out, here's an article I Facebooked:'s list of 50 Best iPhone Apps

Picking your airline seat-mate: One of the most popular stories of the week was KLM's launch of Meet & Seat, which was the subject of a frontage story in the New York Times by Nicola Clark (@NickyKC). If you opt-in for this service, and you are traveling alone, you can see other passengers' Facebook or LinkedIn profiles and try to sit next to someone specific. Right now, the service is available on KLM flights between Amsterdam and New York, San Francisco, and Sao Paolo.

Even someone like me, who considers himself to be very social--and social media--finds the whole thing awkward. Is this something you'd consider participating in? For a Valentine's Day promotion next year, perhaps some airline might come up with Meet & Seat & Mate?

LinkedIn updates: Over on LinkedIn, there were some developments worth noting. The company crossed 150 million registered users and also changed the way it calculates profile "completeness." Instead of emphasizing things you don't have control over, like getting recommendations, it's now emphasizing things you can control, like posting your profile photo, crossing 50 connections and listing your skills.

Suddenly, a lot of people whose profiles were stuck below 100 percent completeness, are now finding themselves at 100 percent. This is good news overall, because a complete profile means you will come up more often in searches. I learned that adding your photo makes your profile "7x more likely to be found" and listing your two most recent positions makes your profile "12x more likely to be found." LinkedIn's blog offers a Friday roundup of the most-read stories on the network. This week's stories included about what companies know about you and how they figure out your secrets; and 10 things bosses never tell employees.

Bot or Not: One of the new tools that got some attention this week (in Poynter, Atlantic and elsewhere) is Bot or Not, created by professor Heather Chaplin's (@HeatherChaplin) journalism class at the New School.

Working with journalists Aaron Pilhofer (@pilhofer) and John Keefe (@JKeefe), the service lets you analyze a Twitter account and learn if it's a person or a robot tweeting. As you can see from the image above, a test of my account shows @sree is "probably a human (but with bot tendencies)." Am not upset, I've been called worse. The two items in red that show my bot tendencies reflect the way I use Twitter--sharing a lot of links and following a lot of voices.

How does your Twitter feed look to Bot or Not?

Giving up social media for Lent?: Last week's start of the Christian period of Lent and the tradition of giving up something meaningful for 40 days means two things on Facebook and Twitter: Thousands announcing whatever it is they're promising to give up; and in some cases, the things they are giving up is social media; or Facebook or Twitter or Instagram or something similar. CNET blogger Chris Matyszczyk (@ChrisMatyszczyk) wrote about a Chicago woman who gave up Facebook for Lent and made news. Did you give up something social-media-ish for Lent? Let us know in the comments and keep us posted. Giving up a service you barely use doesn't count!

Critique of the week: Do you know what NYT's Nick Bilton (@NickBilton), in an article about Apple, said the company was giving away, "as if they were sausage samples on a toothpick at the supermarket"? The answer: users' iPhone address books. In "And the privacy gaps just keep on coming," Bilton writes: Another week. Another privacy debacle. This time, Apple is to blame. Yes, the company that has promoted itself as more private and secure than the other guys, with its stringent app approval process, has actually been handing out people's address books as if they were sausage samples on a toothpick at the supermarket."

Online piracy, explained: If all the noise in recent weeks about online piracy, SOPA, PIPA, etc, has left you dazed, I found a cartoon that nicely explains the issues around the topic. It was tweeted by venture capitalist Fred Wilson (@FredWilson), whose blog,, is a must-read for anyone trying to understand digital media. The cartoon, by The Oatmeal (@TheOatmeal) is called "I tried to watch 'Game of Thrones' and this is what happened."

My top three: A new feature here for these wrap-ups: I am going to post screenshots of my tweets that got the most attention the previous week. I am hoping that, together, we can learn what works and what doesn't on Twitter. I use a free tool called Crowdbooster to identify these.

The tweet with the most impressions (i.e., the total possible number of times someone could have seen a tweet--the sum of my followers and the followers of my retweeters) was one of several I sent out Thursday about the horrifying news of the journalists Marie Colvin, Rémi Ochlik, and Rami Al-Sayed:

Credit: Crowdbooster / Screenshot by Sree Sreenivasan/CNET

The tweet with the most RTs was one quoting a filmmaker friend of mine named Norman Green (@RebNorman). It was part of a long discussion about what freelancers should be paid, and it struck a nerve:

Credit: Crowdbooster / Screenshot by Sree Sreenivasan/CNET

Another tweet that got a lot of RTs was my RT of something that was sent out during the last Republican debate of the primaries:

Credit: Crowdbooster / Screenshot by Sree Sreenivasan/CNET

READERS: What did I miss? Post your thoughts in the comments below, please, or via @sree or #sreetips on Twitter.