Like or Dislike? Facebook should take a lesson from Pixar’s Inside Out and let you express emotions

Inside Out is Pixar's new film. Disney is also making a mobile game based on it.

Mark Zuckerberg finally shared the thought that Facebook may soon create a “dislike” button, in addition to its ubiquitous “like” button, to allow people to “express empathy” at events such as someone posting about an ailing parent.

That’s a step in the right direction, but Facebook should really take a lesson from Pixar’s blockbuster summer film Inside Out. The movie personifies the emotions inside a 12-year-old girl’s head. The emotions include “joy,” “sadness,” “fear,” “anger,” and “disgust.”

On Facebook, we’ve been forced to deal with the fact that we only have the “like” button to express our interest in someone else’s post and share our reaction with others. One of the lessons in the movie is that when the girl isn’t able to access her emotions, she simply shuts down and doesn’t feel anything. If you have only “like” or “dislike” options, your chances of miscommunicating your intent are much higher. And Facebook doesn’t benefit if people miscommunicate online.

Facebook has probably worried that letting loose negative emotions such as “disgust,” “fear,” “anger,” and “sadness” will cause a lot of havoc and conflict. It might also set people loose blasting the brands that constantly advertise on Facebook’s feeds. But that’s a paternalistic notion bordering on censorship.

And there’s no reason to stop at five emotions, given the proliferation of “emoji” emoticons that are available on other kinds of networks. Ronnie del Carmen, co-director of Inside Out, said in a press briefing that the movie makers considered adding many other emotions as well, but they finally decided to cap it for simplicity. Five emotions seems like a nice compromise.

Anything less than this makes it seem like we’re stuck in a happy world where we can only like things. But as Inside Out demonstrated in its story, it’s really a complicated world full of conflicting emotions. Allowing people to get beyond the self-censorship of the “like” button will actually improve communication. That should get everybody talking more, and Facebook would surely benefit from the social networking that results.


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HP Enterprise is considering 25,000 to 30,000 layoffs as it splits apart

HP headquarters in Palo Alto, Calif.

Hewlett-Packard Enterprise, the newly created enterprise business of Hewlett-Packard, is considering 25,000 to 30,000 layoffs as it splits into two companies, according to a developing story by Bloomberg.

We’re checking with HP, which was once the world’s largest tech company in so many measures, for clarification, as HP is already in the midst of shaving back its payroll. HP is in the midst of dividing itself into two different companies, an enterprise company and a consumer tech company.

HP’s enterprise hardware, software and services businesses, will be known as Hewlett-Packard Enterprise, run by current chief executive Meg Whitman. The other will be made up of the PC and printer businesses. The latter will be called HP Inc., and it will keep the HP logo.

At the company’s analyst meeting today, Tim Stonesifer, chief financial officer of Hewlett-Packard Enterprise, said that the company will incur a charge of about $2.7 billion related to the restructuring.

HP had previously disclosed $2 billion in expected cost cuts at the services division within Hewlett-Packard Enterprise, and it has found additional cuts worth $700 million across the rest of the company.


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HP Enterprise is considering 25,000 to 30,000 layoffs as it splits apart

HP headquarters in Palo Alto, Calif.

Hewlett-Packard Enterprise, the newly created enterprise business of Hewlett-Packard, is considering 25,000 to 30,000 layoffs as it splits into two companies, according to a developing story by Bloomberg.

We’re checking with HP, which was once the world’s largest tech company in so many measures, for clarification, as HP is already in the midst of shaving back its payroll. HP is in the midst of dividing itself into two different companies, an enterprise company and a consumer tech company.

HP’s enterprise hardware, software and services businesses, will be known as Hewlett-Packard Enterprise, run by current chief executive Meg Whitman. The other will be made up of the PC and printer businesses. The latter will be called HP Inc., and it will keep the HP logo.

At the company’s analyst meeting today, Tim Stonesifer, chief financial officer of Hewlett-Packard Enterprise, said that the company will incur a charge of about $2.7 billion related to the restructuring.

HP had previously disclosed $2 billion in expected cost cuts at the services division within Hewlett-Packard Enterprise, and it has found additional cuts worth $700 million across the rest of the company.


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Skype Introduces Its Own Version Of Emojis

skype-logo Skype introduced a method to bring brief film segments into its chat service today, adding something akin to GIF support inside of the communications platform. Dubbed ‘Mojis,’ Skype’s new addition are, in its own words, “short clips from your favorite movies and TV shows” that can be used when talking, via text, to other users of the service. Two TechCrunch… Read More

Millennials are perfect for venture capital

Private equity firm Halyard Capital's Bob Nolan sat down with OneWire's Skiddy von Stade to talk about his investing philosophies and the allure of high risk and high reward world of venture capital. When von Stade asked Nolan what he thought of young bankers choosing between private equity and venture capital, Nolan said not only are Millenials drawn to the latter - they also have a good idea of what sells.

AOL Exec Maureen Sullivan Is Joining Rent The Runway

Aol donuts Maureen Sullivan, president of AOL.com and the company’s lifestyle brands, is departing AOL to join clothing rental company Rent the Runway as president. In her current role, Sullivan has been overseeing the company’s homepage, the MAKERS video series and lifestyle sites including Style Me Pretty. She’s been working with AOL CEO Tim Armstrong since their days at Google,… Read More

Marketers’ new big data problem: cross-device and cross-channel targeting

email-marketing-cross-channel

Although mobile data usage has risen 69 percent in the last year, tracking users across devices and channels continues to be among the biggest challenges for today’s marketers. Only 3 in 10 reported using cross-channel tracking to eMarketer, and 65 percent shared that they do not understand how their customers use devices differently, let alone know how to track customers across different devices while logged into the session. While cross-channel strategy creates the opportunity to utilize highly specified and relevant targeting, best practices for implementing this tactic must first be understood for advertisers to truly take advantage of its benefits.

The cross-targeting opportunity

Gartner forecasted that 4.9 billion connected devices will be in use this year — desktops, laptops, tablets, smartphones, wearables, and more — and brands have an immeasurable opportunity to reach consumers on a more engaging, personal level. For example, some of today’s most savvy marketers secure repeatable engagement by delivering tailored content at a time of day and location that’s relevant to each individual consumer.

When it comes to cross-device and cross-channel practices, the prevailing sense is that there is an abundance of data out there to mine and harness for widespread targeting. However, most of the data today’s marketers employ for these efforts is not used optimally to deliver the best user experience and content to consumers. By failing to take relevant data and utilize it specifically for more effective and appropriate cross-device and channel targeting, many marketers are leaving money on the table.

Data confusion

While most marketers are interested in carrying over the retargeting models that have been effective on desktops to a mobile environment, not many understand how difficult it is to actually be successful with these methods without proper data.

In fact, a marketer’s ability to collect data varies from device to device, with mobile representing unique challenges never posed with desktop targeting (where a reliance on cookies is more effective). For any cross-targeting program, the most valuable — and accurate — data is first-party data, i.e., data directly from companies regarding each consumer that has logged into their applications or websites and on what devices that interaction took place. This can also include data about location, buying patterns, demographics, and more. And while this seems intuitive, many companies are hesitant to share this information with their advertising partners, hamstringing their ability to properly target similar users.


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In addition, many practitioners blend this powerful first-party data with unpredictable second- and third-party data, which is information gleaned from a variety of entities that do not have direct relationships with the consumers. They want to create a larger list for their targeting efforts by combining different data sets, but without careful management, they can seriously reduce the efficacy of a campaign. The downside to this approach is that these pooled lists are often misconstrued as being more powerful, accurate, and relevant than they truly are. What’s more, accuracy rates for these lists can be misleading. First-party data is close to 100 percent accurate, as brands know exactly where it’s coming from. But third-party data may be billed as 80 or 90 percent accurate without clear definition of how the data was collected and from where. This discrepancy can make all the difference to targeting and retargeting efforts.

Crossing the chasm

There are many approaches to cross-device and cross-channel matching, including using time, location, and IP address data to narrow down devices used by the same consumer or household, but these methods are not without fault.

The best way for advertisers to maximize their cross-device and channel targeting efforts is sharing and leveraging first-party data. The more information advertisers can provide, the better vendors can classify the end users and evaluate the intersection between the data set provided and those that the vendors already have. This drives a greater degree of confidence in any vendor claims. Advertisers can be conservative about the information they share with their partners, but without this data, the chances of success drop dramatically. Another key set of information that advertisers can share is a list of users that should be omitted from the targeting exercise. For instance, if there is a subset of users already routinely completing purchases across devices, there’s little reason to target them.

The industry buzz around cross-device and cross-channel targeting is already outstripping the actual technology. Marketers who hope to successfully pursue retargeting campaigns must strive to better understand how their target customers interact across multiple platforms. They must also shift from a one-message-fits-all approach to one that’s contextually tailored to the platform in question. Further, they must recognize that as additional device platforms continue to emerge, like the Apple Watch and enterprise wearables, the practice of specialized targeting will only become more complicated.

The bottom line? Today’s marketers need to understand that while this side of advertising technology is immature and requires partnership between brand advertisers and DMPs to improve its quality and efficacy, the opportunities are lucrative for those who take cross-device or cross-channel targeting practices seriously and choose to invest in its longevity.


Barry Coleman is the SVP of Engineering at Manage.


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Google does not intend to become a carmaker: executive

Google's driverless car prototype.

FRANKFURT — Google Inc. does not intend to become a vehicle manufacturer, the company’s managing director for Germany, Austria and Switzerland said on Tuesday at the Frankfurt auto show.

Google has named auto industry veteran John Krafcik, a former CEO of Hyundai Motors America, as chief executive of its self-driving car project.

Google’s pet project of driverless cars started in 2009 with an intention to revolutionize the car industry. The hiring of Krafcik is seen as a sign the tech giant is starting to look at the project as a potential and relevant business in the future.


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Google’s Philipp Justus, who is also the managing director for central and eastern Europe, said the company was working on cars in partnership with the auto industry, but was not planning to become a car manufacturer.

“That is not something we could do alone,” Justus said, adding that Google’s partners included automotive suppliers Bosch and zf friedrichshafen.

“Google also does not intend to become a car manufacturer.”

German premium carmakers BMW, Mercedes-Benz and Audi meanwhile are snapping up software experts as tech firms such as Google threaten to outflank them in the race to develop a self-driving car.

Software expertise has become a new battleground for automakers and tech firms as cars need lines of code to connect electric car motors to batteries, talk to smartphones or activate brakes when a radar system detects an obstacle ahead.

(Reporting by Edward Taylor; editing by David Clarke)


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