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Weekly Top Stories: Dec 16-22

1. Announcing the 2011 Mashable Awards Winners

Although we did not take home the Up-and-Coming Social Media Service award we’d like to thank everyone in our great community who voted Summify throughout the competition! Congratulations crowdtap, you win this round!

The votes are in and the results have been tabulated: After two months of nominations and voting by our community, Mashable is thrilled to announce the winners of the 2011 Mashable Awards!

The fifth annual Mashable Awards honors the best in Mashable‘s core content areas: Social Media, Tech, Business and Entertainment. Read More


2. North Korean leader Kim Jong-il dies ‘of heart attack’

North Korean leader Kim Jong-il has died of a heart attack at the age of 69, state media have announced.

Millions of North Koreans were “engulfed in indescribable sadness”, the KCNA state news agency said, as people wept openly in Pyongyang. Read More


3. Type “Let It Snow” on Google for a Pleasant Surprise


4. The Top 20 iPhone And iPad Apps of 2011

Editor’s note: Contributor Brad Spirrison is the managing editor of mobile app discovery services Appolicious, and AppVee. With this post, he continues an annual tradition of picking the best iOS apps of the year.

It’s telling that Apple chose an app that debuted more than 14 months ago, Instagram, as its “iPhone App of the Year” for 2011. This should not imply that there was a shortage of quality and groundbreaking apps released this year. Far from it. Read More


5. Dear Congress, It’s No Longer OK To Not Know How The Internet Works

I remember fondly the days when we were all tickled pink by our elected officials’ struggle to understand how the internet works. Whether it was George W. Bush referring to “the internets” or Senator Ted Stevens describing said internets as “a series of tubes,” we would sit back and chortle at our well-meaning but horribly uninformed representatives, confident that the right people would eventually steer them back on course. Well I have news for members of Congress: Those days are over. Read More


Christmas Bonus – Steve Jobs: 20 Life Lessons

My feelings about Steve Jobs have always been a little mixed. I long admired his entrepreneurial spirit and business acumen and was in sheer awe of his natural instincts for what appeals to consumers. On the other hand I bristled at what I saw as his — and by extension Apple’s — occasionally capricious and even contradictory actions (App store products in or out, inability to get in front of product issues, antennaegate) and super-secretive nature. Read More

Cook Up Your Productivity: Auto-Pilot Daily Internet Tasks With ifttt

We all have our own routine tasks, often daily, that can take up a considerable amount of our time and usually tend to be quite boring or are difficult to stay on top of. We dream of the day a handy personal assistant or even a well-trained chimpanzee, depending on the task simplicity, could punch the keyboard at 100 strokes a second to take care of it all for us. Day dream no more, ifttt is here to put the internet to work for you.

What’s ifttt (if this then that)?

Using a simple trigger and action format, ifttt allows you to connect any two web services together to perform tasks on auto-pilot. For example, add a photo to Instagram and have it uploaded into a Facebook album, automatically. You create a trigger (Instagram) which causes an action (Facebook). The combinations you can create are only limited to your imagination and the channels – the web services and devices you use every day – that are on ifttt.

Take a look through the ifttt channels to see the web applications you can use to create triggers and actions. A trigger + action = task, and you can create your own recipes (task formulas) to share with your friends or community.

ifttt recipes for Summify

Share summaries direct to your Facebook Page, instead of your personal profile (not yet possible within Summify itself), and customize the message!

Automatically save your articles for later reading:


Some other popular recipes involving:

Google Reader
Read it Later

Take a look at your work-flow and let your imagination loose to see what combinations you can come up with. Can you think of some other helpful tasks that would help you with your Summifying? Create a new recipe on ifttt and let us know below.

How To Be Awesome On Social Media In 20 Minutes A Day

This is a guest post by Leo Widrich, co-founder of Buffer. More about him at the bottom of this post.

As sharing is predicted to absolutely explode in the coming 2012 year, many smart people have predicted a “Shareapocalypse”. Or to speak with the words of Nova Spivack, who says:

“In the Sharepocalypse hundreds (if not thousands) of online friends share content with us across various social networks, culminating in massive information overload.”

So how can we best battle this information overload out there? With a few awesome tools, I believe it can be done. A lot of great apps have emerged to organize, consume and share your content much more efficiently than before.

Here are my top pointers for you to make the most of Social Media in just 20 minutes a day:

5 minutes: Find the best content from your Social Networks

If you really don’t want to spend any more than 5 minutes per day to get the best content from around the web, Summify is your top tool. It pulls in all the content from your Twitter, Facebook and Google Reader stream. It then passes it through their smart algorithm and comes up with the best stories based on your reading habits.

Through this, you will always be kept up to date and get your daily dose of news straight to your inbox. With the new “on demand” stories button, you can even choose to get another summary of news, if the one you received isn’t quite right for you.

Timing: Personally I love doing this early in the morning, just when I get up.


5 minutes: Share the best content more effectively on Twitter and Facebook

Now, the worst thing that could happen, is if I were to take 5 minutes to read my great Summify summary, and then blast all the top stories out to my followers, 5 at once and flood my stream. If you still want to keep your day productive, spending as little time as possible, there are a lot of smart ways to make sharing easier for yourself.

What I like to do once I have received my social summary, is to drop those awesome articles into my Buffer. Buffer will then go ahead and post them for me at the best times to Facebook or Twitter, well spaced out over the day, and my followers will receive the updates, one at a time, easy to digest.

Timing: Filling up my Buffer with Summify stories happens early in the morning too, just after I finish reading my summary.


10 minutes: Engage, comment, like, retweet and reply

The last 10 minutes, which I normally spend in the evening, after a lot of my content has been posted and got responses, I spend engaging with my followers. It is often hard to do this in a focused way, as engaging normally happens very impulsively.

So here are a few things that I do to stay focused and get more out of my time engaging with friends and followers:

  • • Reply individually to your new followers, by looking at their bio and finding something you really appreciate about what they do.
  • • Pick out 3 Facebook stories, like them and comment with a sign of appreciation.
  • • Answer a question someone asked in your Twitter stream, or try pointing them to someone who could possibly help.
  • • Browse your stream or Twitter lists and add whatever you find interesting as retweets into your Buffer. The integration of Buffer makes this super easy.

Timing: I normally do this in the late afternoon, early evening. It is a great task to relax and normally a lot of fun.


Your results

If you try out this technique by just spending 20 minutes a day, you will be amazed, by how much can achieve. Doing this, has helped me increase my click rate on Tweets tremendously. Being focused when you engage also has helped me to grow my network a lot faster than I had anticipated.

Combining Summify and Buffer, will give you a Social Media power combination of sharing and finding the best content you can possibly find – in the least amount of time spent.

To track your progress, simply take a peak at your Buffer analytics. It will show you how many clicks, retweets and the reach your posts have gotten. And especially if you are swapping to Buffer to share Summify stories from now onwards, I am sure you will see a jump in mentions, replies and retweets.

Personally, after I have been a lot more focused and a lot more positive with my commenting, retweeting and replying, I saw lots of improvement on both my follower count and click rate.

Over to you now. Do you think trying this 20 minute technique for 1 week could make a difference to your Social Media results?

About the Author:

Leo Widrich is co-founder of Buffer, keeping the community alive and buzzing by blogging fabulous Twitter tips on the Buffer blog. He loves writing and football and he’s a super helpful guy, so do say hello! You can catch him on Twitter at @LeoWid.

Weekly Top Stories: Dec 9-15

1. What the World’s Biggest Websites Looked Like at Launch

Since the rise of the Internet in the ’90s, the web has shown no signs of slowing down. We’ve watched the birth and evolution of social media, e-commerce and online video entertainment.

It’s hard to imagine that the treasured websites we all use today were at one point just scribbles on a piece of paper, or the brainchild of a 19-year-old college student. With the help of the Wayback Machine, which provides screenshots of any website imaginable from its inception until now, we’re can view the original designs and content of the most visited websites in the U.S.

Seeing how far the world has come in terms of web design, where do you foresee us heading next?


2. New Twitter: 25 Tips and Tricks for Savvy Tweeters

The reorganized and refashioned is a markedly different beast than it was just 48 hours ago [Dec 7]. Now millions of users who call Twitter’s web destination home are looking for help. Perhaps just 25 soupcons of it. If so, look no further than this list of 25 new Twitter tips. Read More


3. Apple Made A Deal With The Devil (No, Worse: A Patent Troll)

Over the last two years, Apple has been engaged in vicious legal battles over smartphone patents, many of which are aimed at squelching (or squeezing money out of) manufacturers of devices running Android. And now, for some reason, it has given valuable patents to a patent troll — which is using them to sue many of the top technology companies in the world. Read More


4. Why Spotify can never be profitable: The secret demands of record labels

Imagine a new hot-dog selling venture. Let’s also say there’s only one supplier to purchase hot dogs from. Instead of simply charging a fixed price for hot dogs, that supplier demands the HIGHER of the following: $1 per hot dog sold OR $2 for every customer served OR 50 percent of all revenues for anything sold in the store.In addition, the supplier requires a two-year minimum order of 300 hot dogs per day, payable all in advance. If fewer hot dogs are sold, there is no refund. If more than 300 hot dogs are sold each day, payments to the supplier are generated by calculating $2 per customer or 50 percent of total revenues, so an additional payment is due to the supplier. After the first two years, the supplier can unilaterally adjust any of the pricing terms and the shop can never switch suppliers. Read More

5. Time’s Person of The Year

No one could have known that when a Tunisian fruit vendor set himself on fire in a public square, it would incite protests that would topple dictators and start a global wave of dissent. In 2011, protesters didn’t just voice their complaints; they changed the world. Read More


Summify Spotlight – Simon Boichot

As more spanish-speaking Summifyers continue popping up all around the World, we’ve created our first bilingual post to share cools tips and tricks with our wider community! Click for English

Las series Summify Spotlight enseñan cómo la gente usa Summify en su trabajo de todos los dias, compartiendo sus consejos de productividad y fuentes favoritas para ayudarlos a aprovechar al máximo sus resúmenes Summify.
Sobre Simon (@boichot): es una mezcla entre un “geek” que no es bueno programando y un aficionado de las artes, lo que lo llevo a trabajar en administración y mercadeo en el sector de la música, especialmente usando herramientas para promover eventos en vivo e investigar para volver la experiencia del publico aún mejor. Para resumir, está haciendo un trabajo que le encanta y trata de enterarse de lo que pasa en un negocio que se mueve muy (muy) rápido.

Enter Simon

La mayor parte del tiempo uso Summify para el trabajo, me sirvió para varias cosas : monitorear la comunidad de seguidores del Festival Latin Reggae Bits, conocer las nuevas tendencias en negocios inclusivos para hablar de ellas con el equipo de Makesense y, por supuesto, mantener un ojo sobre las redes sociales y monitorear las noticias del sector de la música sin estar conectado todo el tiempo para mi trabajo de todos los días en Cecom Musica.

Summify me sirve diferamente según los proyectos, para un proyecto como el Festival Latin Reggae Bits lo use para saber cuál es el contenido más compartido dentro de la comunidad de seguidores del festival. Así, puedo posicionar el Festival como un medio y también me permitió involucrar los mismos seguidores en la generación de contenido, nombrándolos destacando el contenido de lo cual están hablando. Lastimosamente, este proyecto se hizo como una consultoría temporal y no pude seguir el proceso. Creo mucho en la posibilidad de transformar un evento o una banda en un medio y, aún más, en un medio colaborativo implicando la misma comunidad, Summify es una herramienta muy buena para hacer eso.

Por otra parte, uso Summify todo los días para monitorear Twitter y las personas que sigo sin estar conectado todo el tiempo, me gusta mucho el correo que me llega todo los días con el contenido más mencionado por las personas que sigo. Me permite filtrar el ruido de Twitter (lo uso también con Facebook pero hace solamente un poco de tiempo que tengo un uso profesional de Facebook para conectarme con la gente así que todavía no hay mucho contenido que me llega de allí) y siempre tener buen contenido para compartir con mis seguidores.

Finalmente, este trabajo de monitoreo me permite seguir informado y tener material para presentaciones y artículos sobre la evolución de la música en relación con lo digital, como lo que estoy haciendo con

Herramientas y consejos para optimizar su uso de Twitter

Descubrí Twitter en 2007 cuando entré a trabajar por su copycat alemán : Frazr. Al mismo tiempo que estaba creciendo Twitter, el número de personas que seguía crecía también y durante un rato me conectaba de manera muy escasa a Twitter. Volvi completamente otra vez cuando llegué a Colombia porque era una manera de mantener el contacto con el sector de la música en Francia y de interactuar con el sector colombiano al mismo tiempo, pero estaba todavía una actividad que necesitaba mucho tiempo si quería hacerlo bien. Siempre me pregunto cómo hacen las personas que siguen 5.000 personas en adelante para mantener un contacto social con todas esas personas – me parece bastante artificial la mayor parte del tiempo y eso es como raro para mí.

Para mantener el contacto con las personas que sigo, para compartir y intercambiar, desarrollé una navaja suiza de herramientas y métodos que me gustan usar:

Monitorear una comunidad y las personas que sigo: usar las listas Twitter y seguirlas con Hootsuite o Tweetdeck

Descubrir nuevas personas para seguirlas:
Twitter Search (tambien una muy buena herramienta de monitorea combinada con Hootsuite o Tweetdeck)
• Recomendaciones de otros tuiteros
• Enlaces de las cuentas Twitter de los blogs que leo
• Personas siguiendo o que están seguidas por personas que ya conozco
Rapportive que me permite ver las cuentas Twitter de las personas con las cual intercambio por correo en Gmail

Hacer un resumen de mis noticias sociales: Summify me trae las noticias mas importantes desde mis flujos sociales. Me gusta mucho la posibilidad de incorporar flujos RSS que me permite especificar los medios que prefiero.

Publicar: Uso para compartir contenido en el tiempo adecuado para mis seguidores o para compartir directamente (dependiendo de la urgencia).

Analytics y trafico: es un comprimidor de URL que integra muy bien con Timely y Tweetdeck. Es imposible conectar con Hootsuite sin usar trucos como scripts de Greasemonkey.

Limpieza de la lista de las personas que sigo: iunfollow o de manera mas selectiva con socialbro. Me ayuda a mantener una lista pertinente que contenga solo las personas con las cuales quiero seguir en contacto, las que intercambian conmigo y comparten buen contenido.

Analizar mi cuenta Twitter para mejorarla: socialbro y crowdbooster es una cosa que hago debe ser cuando

Durante todo ese proceso, las herramientas que mas uso a parte de Summify son: Timely, HootSuite o Tweetdeck y

Aqui estan mis tuiteros favoritos:

@Makesensetwitts – an open project which challenges people for social business
@transmusicales – music festival focused on revelation in Britain
@eurockeennes – music festival in my hometown
@mybandis – web project from Colombia, making website building easy for music bands
@virberg – founder of @DBTH_AA, strategy & development for artists & creative industries
@thornybleeder – rock n’ roll brand architect
@makeitinmusic – a resource dedicated to mentoring aspiring artists
@brandinyourhand – international consultant in the arts, especially new technology.
@unicum_music – because each artist we represent is unique, Management & publishing
@artsoz – arts marketing consultant and commentator

Si quiere conectarse con Simon para escuchar mas de sus proyectos o de su experiencia con la música y los medios sociales, conéctese con el en LinkedIn, Summify o siga @boichot en Twitter.

Dejenos saber lo que piensa de nuestro Spotlight! Si quiere estar considerado para un próximo post de los Summify Spotlight no dude en escribirnos aqui:





Our Summify Spotlight series showcases how everyday people use Summify, sharing their productivity tips and favorite sources to help you get the most out of your summaries.

About Simon: Simon Boichot (@boichot) is a mix of a not-so-good-at-programming computer geek and an art enthusiast, which lead him to work in music management and music marketing, especially using web tools to promote live events and investigate ways to make the audience experience greater. In short, Simon’s doing a job he loves, trying to stay up to date in a really fast moving industry.

Enter Simon

Most of the time I’m using Summify for work. I’ve used it for several projects: to monitor the Latin Reggae Bits Festival followers, to follow social business trends and talk about them with the Makesense crew, and, obviously, to stay up to date on the music business without being obliged to be connected to the social networks all the time, for my work at Cecom Musica.

I’m using Summify in different ways depending on the project. On one hand, for the Latin Reggae Bits Festival I used Summify to discover what content followers of the festival were sharing the most. This helped me position the Festival as a media source, allowing me to involve the followers in content generation, mention them, and show the content they were talking about. Unfortunately, this project was based on temporary consulting and I could not follow the process the entire way. I really think that turning an event or a band into a content provider has a lot of potential, even more, I think turning one into a collaborative content provider based on crowdsourcing and the community of followers is a really good way to communicate within social media. To achieve this Summify is, in my point of view, a great tool.

On the other hand, I’m using Summify every day to monitor Twitter and the people I’m following without being obliged to be connected all the time. I really like the email I’m receiving with the most mentioned content from my timeline. It allows me to filter the noise on Twitter (I’m using it with Facebook too, but I’m just starting to use this social network as a professional network, so the content which is coming from Facebook is still very little) and always have great content to share with my followers.

Finally, this monitoring work allows me to stay informed and have material for presentations and articles that I’m making on the evolution of music marketing, especially with a digital point of view, like what I’m doing with

Tools and Advice To Help Your Twitter Work-Flow

I discovered Twitter back in 2007 when I began working at Frazr (a German Twitter copycat). As Twitter became bigger and bigger, so did my timeline, and for a while I only checked Twitter sporadically. I fully got back into it when I landed in Colombia because it was a way to stay in contact with the French music sector and to interact with the Colombian one at the same time, but it was still a very time consuming activity if I wanted to do it well. I always wonder how people who follow 5,000+ people can keep in social contact with all them – it seems pretty artificial most of the time, and this is strange to me.

To stay in contact with the people I’m following, to share and converse, I’ve developed a Swiss Army Knife of tools and methods that I like to use:

Monitoring a community and those I follow – use Twitter Lists and watch them with Hootsuite or Tweetdeck.

Discovering new people to follow:
Twitter Search (also a great monitoring tool within Hootsuite or Tweetdeck)
• recommendations from others
• links to Twitter accounts from the blogs I read
• people following or followed by people I already know
Rapportive allows me to see the Twitter accounts of my Gmail contacts

Summarizing my social newsSummify brings me the most important news from my social feeds. I really like how I can import RSS feeds, allowing me to specify the media I prefer.

Publishing – I use Timely to share content at optimal times for my followers, or to share right away (depending on the urgency).

Link traffic and is a URL shortener that integrates well with both Timely and Tweetdeck. It’s impossible to connect to Hootsuite without using tricks like Greasemonkey.

Radical cleaning of who I follow on Twitteriunfollow, or more selectively with socialbro. This helps me maintain a pertinent list of only the people I want to stay in contact with, and those who are conversing with me.

Analyzing my Twitter account for improvements – something I do from time to time – socialbro and crowdbooster.

During this process, the tools I’m using the most, besides Summify, are: Timely, HootSuite or Tweetdeck, and (which integrates nicely with both Timely and Tweetdeck).

Here are my top top 10 Twitter follows:

@Makesensetwitts – an open project which challenges people for social business
@transmusicales – music festival focused on revelation in Britain
@eurockeennes – music festival in my hometown
@mybandis – web project from Colombia, making website building easy for music bands
@virberg – founder of @DBTH_AA, strategy & development for artists & creative industries
@thornybleeder – rock n’ roll brand architect
@makeitinmusic – a resource dedicated to mentoring aspiring artists
@brandinyourhand – international consultant in the arts, especially new technology.
@unicum_music – because each artist we represent is unique, Management & publishing
@artsoz – arts marketing consultant and commentator

If you want to connect with Simon to hear more about his projects or experience with social media and music, check him out on LinkedIn, Summify or follow @boichot on Twitter.

Let us know what you think of our Spotlight! If you’d like to be considered for future Summify Spotlight posts you can email us at

Summify Launches in the HootSuite App Directory

As huge supporters and users of HootSuite, the market-leading social media management system, we’re excited to announce the launch of our Summify app in the HootSuite App Directory, opening up Summify to HootSuite’s 2.7+ million social media power users around the world – hoot hoot hooray!

Now with in-dashboard support for Basic, Pro and Enterprise HootSuite users, it’s easier than ever to integrate Summify into your existing personal or professional social media activities, effortlessly monitoring content and publishing it to your social networks, all from one spot.

Available streams: Summary

Key Features:
View your daily summaries
View summaries from previous days
Share news items from your summaries to your social networks through HootSuite
View details of news items in your summary — who shared it and the actual message shared

Need Some Help?

Drop us a line with your questions, feedback and new feature requests through our Summify Feedback Channel or the HootSuite Feedback Forum. You can also tweet @summify on Twitter, or email us:

The HootSuite App Directory, released in November 2011, allows you to integrate more tools and complete more tasks from one central location, and now features even more great apps: Summify, YouTube, Flickr, Tumblr, Get Satisfaction, Constant Contact, Posterous Spaces, and Formulists. Learn more about the HootSuite App Directory, and follow @HootSuite_Apps for the latest updates.

Summify for iPhone 1.5 Is Here

The much anticipated 1.5 release of the Summify iPhone app hit the App Store today.


Twitter iOS 5 Integration

Simplicity at it’s finest: add your Twitter account in your iPhone’s settings for easy sign-ups and logins, in one click!

1. Go to Settings and add your Twitter account to your iPhone

2. Sign-up or login with one click (or two, if you have multiple Twitter accounts). The new Twitter iOS 5 integration eliminates an extra one or two steps in both the sign-up and login processes.


Like button

You can find the new heart-shaped Like button in the top-right corner when reading a story. Clicking the button helps teach Summify what you enjoy reading, and if one of the story’s sources shared the link from Facebook, It will automatically “Like” the story on Facebook as well. Go on, spread some love.


Read it Later Integration

A few weeks ago we announced the integration of Read it Later for Summify summaries. Now it’s ready to roll on your iPhone. Here’s how to start saving stories for later reading:

1. Tap your profile picture to access the Settings screen and configure your account
2. Enter your account details to connect

3. Your username will appear beside the Read it Later icon once you are connected
4. Save any article to Read it Later from the share screen (accessed by clicking the share button when reading an individual story)


Improved Text Readability

We reduced the left-right margins and increased line-height to improve readability. Here’s a before and after look at the changes:


Squashing Bugs

With over 40 bug fixes in this release, we won’t bore you with the extermination details. Most notably, we resolved the issue of the missing Japanese keyboard in iOS 5. To put it simply, stuff just works better.


Summify Gets A New App Icon – what do you think?

After several “friendly” nudges and comments from Summifyers we’ve finally got around to updating our icon – a slightly more solid look.

Thank you to everyone who continues to report bugs and pass on suggestions, helping us improve everyone’s news consumption experience for the better. Keep the feedback coming, and let us know what you think of the new updates!


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