TIME World Cup

U.S. Soccer Captain Clint Dempsey Posts Adorable Father’s Day Instagram

U.S. soccer wins Instragram

Clint Dempsey may be the captain of the United States’ men’s national soccer team but he’s also apparently the team’s captain of adorable-ness. Dempsey posted this amazing photo to Instagram just a day before the American striker leads the U.S. squad in its opening World Cup contest against team Ghana (Monday at 6 p.m. EST folks — get your caxirolas ready!). A pair of tickets to the next World Cup says that the young lad summiting Dempsey’s shoulders and the two in his lap are quite possibly the happiest kids in the world tonight. The aww-inducing pic has already racked up thousands of likes on Instagram.

TIME human behavior

Peer Pressure Lasts Only Three Days, Study Says

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Image Source—Getty Images/Image Source

Wait a few days before you decide whether to follow the pack

Feeling pressure to go on a date with someone all your friends told you was so cute? Just wait three days and your true feelings might be revealed. It turns out the influence of others may not have as big an impact on your decisions as psychological researchers previously thought, according to a new study published in Psychological Science. In fact, their opinion may only be impactful for a short period.

Researchers at Chinese universities asked men to rate the attractiveness of 280 female faces. After they rated each face, the study participants were shown the average ratings the rest of the experimental group gave the face. They were then asked to rate the same faces after one day, three days, one week or three months. The research team found that individuals’ initial judgments could be altered by others’ opinions in the first three days. After that, they stuck with their initial assessment.

Our findings suggest that because the social-conformity effect lasts several days, it reflects a short-term change in privately held views rather than a transient public compliance,” the authors of the study said in a statement.

Obviously, peer pressure can be constant and doesn’t work in the limited, fleeting way tested in this experimental setting. Still, it’s good to know we are capable of making our own decisions independent of our friends — after a few days go by.

TIME social

7 Ways to Shop Online with Friends

Shopping with friends used to be an event. You’d meet a girlfriend or two for lunch, then amble through the mall or down the street together perusing items and sharing opinions about what might look good on the other person or work well in their house. Thanks to Pinterest and a slew of other social shopping sites, you can come close to replicating this online. Here are the websites and apps we like that help you shop with friends virtually.

Pinterest

Pinterest

Ever since it came onto the scene four years ago, Pinterest has defined the category of visual discovery by letting users create and collect “pins,” or bookmarks, to online content. With a predominantly female user base, the platform features mostly images of food, fashion and home and garden that link to other websites such as recipe blogs or shopping sites. Pinterest is a social network as well, letting you follow the Pinterest activity of friends from Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Gmail and Yahoo (and they yours), as well as strangers who pin material you find interesting. Most recently, Pinterest launched a feature called Guided Search that helps you explore pinned content with similar content; for example, it might suggest “Bachelorette Party” or “Summer” if you search for “little black dress.” If you click on “little black dress,” you can then choose from “all pins” to mine the entire platform or “Just my Pins” if you want to find one you already pinned. Want to make it super simple to pin cool things you find while surfing the web? Install a Pin It bookmarklet to your browser. One click sends that content over to Pinterest, which also can be accessed via free iOS and Android apps.

Wanelo

Wanelo

Named with a combination of the words want, need and love, Wanelo is more of a pure shopping site than Pinterest. You populate your feed with clothing, accessories and home goods images by following other users as well as stores such as Victoria’s Secret, Crate and Barrel and Banana Republic (plus scads of others you probably haven’t heard of). Save items you find to collections you name such as “Things I Like” or “Dresses”; if you click to buy them, you’ll leave Wanelo and go to the store where they’re offered. If you find something you think a friend would like or want someone else’s opinion on an item, you can send it to your friends on Facebook and Twitter if you’ve connected those accounts to Wanelo. Like Pinterest, Wanelo offers a bookmarklet you can add to your browser to make it easy to save things to Wanelo, and it’s also accessible via free iOS and Android apps.

The Hunt

The Hunt

Have you ever found the loveliest outfit that you would never be able to afford or coveted something worn by Angelina Jolie? Or maybe you own an item but can’t figure out what goes well with it. The Hunt community will help you find items that are similar or exactly the same as photos you upload from any website or bring in from Tumblr, Instagram or Pinterest. Follow other people’s hunts — items you also wouldn’t mind having — and stay in the loop when people post URLs to websites where you can find them. Even better, become a fashion detective yourself and post a link to a store website that sells something being hunted. The Hunt is available as a free iOS app.

Glimpse by The Find

Glimpse

Glimpse mines your Facebook network for product likes and pulls in photos, prices and links where you can purchase them. Save your favorites in catalogs and customize your feed by clicking to subtract product categories and brands you’re not interested in. Glimpse is also accessible via free iOS and Android apps.

The Beauty Board by Sephora

Sephora

If makeup is your thing, you’ll love Sephora’s Beauty Board. The stream of selfies is a fantastic resource for ideas on how to do your makeup, and it gives you quick access via Sephora.com to the products people used to come up with these looks. Filter looks according to categories such as Eyes, Lips or Nails and share looks to Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter and Google+ in one click.

Luvocracy

Luvocracy

On Luvocracy, add your favorite items and links to where people can buy them to collections based on any kind of category you want, such as “Spring,” “Organizing Tools” or “Home.” The idea is to earn rewards via money from purchases or royalty checks. When someone you invite to Luvocracy joins the site, you earn 2 percent of their purchases on the platform for one year. You also make 2 percent when someone buys something that you’ve recommended and get royalties when someone re-posts one of your recommendations, although royalties diminish with the distance between your original post and successive re-posts. If you’re popular online — say, you run a well-read fashion blog or have lots of followers on Pinterest — you could qualify for the Tastemaker program and earn up to 10 percent when people buy the things you recommend. A Luvocracy Chrome extension lets you add things to the platform as you find them while you’re surfing the web.

nousDECOR

nousDecor

This unique interior design search engine makes it easy to create and affordably source the home looks you want. Browse photos of room designs and products on collections called moodboards created by nousDecor editors and users. Moodboards include an inspiration image along with a selection of products that fit the room theme. Hover your pointer to see product details, prices and where to find them (including well-known retailers such as Macy’s). Create your own look by uploading an inspiration image (perhaps from Pinterest or Tumblr) and then populating it with things that fit your style. Search by name, color, price or dimensions — or just browse through a list of suggestions. When you’re done, name, categorize and save your moodboard and then ask for design advice from the nousDECOR community.

This article was written by Christina DesMarais and originally appeared on Techlicious.

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TIME Shopping

The #AmazonCart Hashtag Lets You Shop Amazon Right from Twitter

Just in case you needed an excuse to a) never leave Twitter and b) buy more stuff from Amazon

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Sensing that you might be interested in buying something that someone you know just bought, Twitter and Amazon have intermingled themselves to introduce the #AmazonCart hashtag.

If you see a tweet containing a product link to something on Amazon, all you’ll need to do is reply to that tweet with “#AmazonCart” and the same item will be added to your Amazon shopping cart.

The idea is that you can just keep adding products all day, swing by the bank for a second mortgage on your way home and then hit the checkout button later that night once you’ve moved some money around.

You’ll need to first connect your Amazon and Twitter accounts, and there are some failsafes – a tweet back from @MyAmazon and an email confirming you’ve added something to your cart – but this is another step toward a frictionless shopping experience.

[CNET]

TIME social

Twitter Reportedly Tests a Mute Button for Politely Ignoring People

An experimental feature would keep excessive tweets from clogging your feed.

Twitter is reportedly experimenting with a “mute” button, which would let you follow someone without seeing their posts in your feed.

The mute button is apparently just a test for now, appearing for at least a couple of people within Twitter’s iPhone app. Twitter acknowledged last fall that it’s been running more experiments, but there’s no word on whether mute will launch for everyone.

Mute would be helpful for whenever someone you follow is getting too noisy. While you can always just unfollow that person, doing so would prevent you from exchanging direct messages, and may also just come off as rude, especially if it’s a friend or family member. Some third-party apps, such as TweetDeck and Tweetbot, have their own mute buttons, but because those apps aren’t available on every platform, there’s no good way to mute someone across all your devices.

Last December, Twitter flirted with mute functionality by changing the way blocking worked, so that blocked users would still be able to view, reply and retweet whatever you wrote. The backlash was so strong that Twitter quickly reversed its policy. This only solidified the need for a separate mute button, so hopefully the feature will graduate from the lab soon.

TIME Technologizer

Facebook Wants to Do to Mobile Apps What It Did to the Web, and That’s O.K.

Mark Zuckerberg
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg compares the Facebook platform for mobile developers to iOS, Android and Windows Phone at the f8 conference in San Francisco on April 30, 2014 Erin Lubin -- Bloomberg / Getty Images

The most striking thing about the keynote at Facebook’s f8 conference in San Francisco was something that only became apparent after it was over: Mark Zuckerberg and other Facebook executives spent an hour on stage talking about new stuff, and none of it was about Facebook.

Or at least not if you define Facebook as being the social-networking site and app of the same name.

Instead, all the news–and there was tons of it–related to features Facebook is rolling out to help mobile developers build more powerful apps and make more money from them.

A sampling of what got announced:

  • New features for signing into apps using Facebook will let you customize your privacy settings and log in anonymously;
  • AppLinks is a standard that lets mobile apps integrate with each other, so that one app can send you directly to a specific feature in another app, which can then route you back to a specific place in the original one;
  • The company is also offering technology to let mobile apps that normally need web access to store data locally on a device, thereby enabling them to work in offline mode;
  • There’s a new mobile Like button and tools that allow developers to let users share content with specific friends through Facebook Messenger;
  • The Facebook Audience Network will let apps display ads sold by Facebook, and allow marketers to target their ads using information Facebook knows about users, much as already happens on Facebook itself.

Zuckerberg described the company’s vision as offering a “cross-platform platform,” competing in some respects with Apple’s iOS, Google’s Android and Microsoft’s Windows Phone without forcing developers to build apps for a specific mobile operating system.

It’s a logical extension of what the company has been doing for the majority of its existence: Providing web developers with features that (A) help them offer powerful features without having to build them; and (B) lash them tightly to Facebook, thereby making the web even more dependent on Mark Zuckerberg’s social network as the primary way to keep track of people and their identities.

At the keynote, Zuckerberg said that third-party sites and apps make almost a half-trillion calls to the Facebook API a day–each one representing an instance of Facebook powering something on a site or app other than Facebook itself. Making this infrastructure reliable is so important that he declared that the company has retired its famous mantra–“Move fast and break things”–and now wants to move fast while ensuring that it’s providing robust infrastructure for all the companies that depend on it.

People who don’t like or trust Facebook–a minority, but a passionately vocal one–presumably won’t like the idea of its tendrils stretching deeper and deeper into more and more apps. But how should the rest of us feel about the prospect?

Me, I’m O.K. with it–optimistic, even, that it will lead to better apps. Here’s why:

  • The alternative, oftentimes, is nothing. A pretty high percentage of mobile app developers are small shops with a very limited ability to build complex features from scratch. Facebook’s goal is to let them make their apps more sophisticated by plugging in a few lines of code–a strategy the web has embraced for years now, and which has (mostly) made it a better place.
  • Facebook’s competition is usually another big, powerful company. If apps don’t work with the Facebook Audience Network to monetize themselves through targeted ads, they’ll do something similar with Google or somebody else. Better for Google to face competition from Facebook than for it to end up dominating advertising even more than it already does. And as Zuckerberg said, much of what Facebook is doing provides an alternative to what Apple, Google and Microsoft are doing with their respective operating systems.
  • The privacy controls look reasonable. Consumers have memories like elephants, and Facebook’s reputation is still tarnished by blunders it made years ago when it moved too fast and broke too many things–such as with Beacon, a 2007 advertising technology that left members surprised to find information about their activities elsewhere showing up on their feeds. But at f8, the keynote began with demos of the new granular privacy controls and anonymous login option, both of which should help users take advantage of the Facebook-ization of mobile apps in a way that works for them.

You don’t have to be a Facebook hater to worry, sometimes, about one company controlling so much of the technological plumbing that powers other companies’ services and apps. Ultimately, though, Facebook has became so essential in so many places because it’s built so many useful technologies and has done a better job than anyone else of selling the world on their advantages.

To put it another way: If the idea of Facebook being everywhere bothers you, don’t blame Facebook. Blame everybody else who’s failed, in most instances, to beat it to the punch or provide more compelling alternatives.

TIME Technologizer

Facebook Beefs Up Privacy for App Logins–and Lets You Go Anonymous

Mark Zuckerberg
Mark Zuckerberg gives the keynote at Facebook's f8 conference in San Francisco on April 30, 2014 Harry McCracken / TIME

I’m at Facebook’s f8 developer conference in San Francisco, where the keynote is still underway–but there’s already been some significant news.

Mark Zuckerberg opened the day by saying that this conference would be all about how Facebook is building a stable mobile platform for developers–a “cross-platform platform” that competes with Apple’s iOS, Google’s Android and Microsoft’s Windows Phone. And which isn’t too buggy–Zuckerberg says that Facebook has dumped its old mantra of “Move Fast and Break Things” in favor of moving fast, but worrying about reliability.

The first specific tidbits he shared all had to do with using Facebook to sign into other apps:

  • When you sign into a new app for the first time, you’ll get a list of specific permissions the app would like to have, such as being able to post to your wall–and you’ll be able to turn them on and off selectively, tailoring your level of privacy to your liking.
  • Facebook will stop sharing information involving a user’s friends with apps–so, for instance, an app such as Rdio will never know or display what you’re listening to unless you’ve given explicit permission.
  • You’ll be able to use Facebook to sign into an app anonymously–so your Facebook credentials get used but Facebook doesn’t tell the app who you are.

Interesting stuff. More to come as the conference proceeds.

TIME social

Facebook Messenger Is Looking More and More like Snapchat

Facebook Messenger iOS
Facebook

Since Facebook couldn’t have Snapchat, the social network now wants to make it obsolete. On Monday the company rolled out an update to the iOS version of its Messenger app that makes it a speedier and more visually focused competitor to the ephemeral messaging app.

Facebook Messenger now boasts video messaging for the first time, and makes it easier for users to exchange photos. In fact, trading selfies is now even easier than in Snapchat because a user can do it without leaving a conversation thread—Snapchat requires users to select recipients for each picture message. The update also gives more prominence to stickers, which people can use to communicate through images rather than words. The changes will hit the Android version later this week.

Despite purchasing competing service WhatsApp for $19 billion in February, Facebook has made some aggressive moves in recent weeks to boost Messenger’s user base. The company is eliminating messaging in the main Facebook app, forcing people to download Messenger if they want to IM with friends. That decision was met with much derision, but Facebook claims the tight integration between Messenger and Facebook proper will lead to a better user experience overall.

Facebook Messenger now has 200 million monthly active users. That likely dwarfs Snapchat, which has never disclosed its user base figures but says it processes 400 million photos and videos each day.

[TechCrunch]

TIME social

The Words Most Likely to Find You Online Dating Success

Is your online dating profile failing to attract “the one?” It may be because of the words you’re using, a new analysis from dating site PlentyOfFish reveals.

In the study, a team of PhD scientists analyzed the words used by the 1.2 million profiles on PlentyOfFish. According to the company, very clear trends arose amongst those who were successful in finding love and those who were still looking.

Those who have found love, unsurprisingly, use the word “love” the most in their profiles. Successful daters of both sexes frequently used the words “time,” “life,” “friend” and “music,” as well.

Men are more likely to find love using words in their online dating profile that suggest an interest in a long-term relationship. The words “heart,” “children,” “romantic” and “relationship” are all markers of a man most likely to see success in love. The advice holds true for women, as well: Women who found relationships used the word “relationship” 16% more often than those who are still single.

Those still looking for love tend to use words that describe shorter term activities, like “travel,” “dinner” and “shop” for women and “hang” and “humor” for men.

Want to learn more about saucing up your online dating profile? Check out this more detailed word analysis of successful OKCupid and Match.com profiles. Then be sure to read up on these online dating red flags so you know what – and who – to avoid online.

This article was written by Fox Van Allen and originally appeared on Techlicious.

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