Brands spin a web of fun with viral videos

Planting plastic insects in your friend’s bag and making prank calls are a thing of yesterday. Like most things, traditions too have taken to the social media platform.

On the 1st of April, better known as April Fool’s Day, some brands pulled off online pranks which may well be on their way to becoming classics.

Take a look back at the best online pranks and share your thoughts with us if you almost fell for them.

Here are 3 of the best videos which went viral on youtube:

The future is here! Google tells you how to control your e-mail with your body language.

A new breed of penguins – genetic mutation or a prank well executed?

The Legend Of Zelda joins the list of most awaited movies.

Google’s changes to do cool things heats up privacy debate

Regarding its new privacy policy changes, Google states that it will now be able to do many more ‘cool things’ after it combines useful user information across services and products. There is much more that it can do to help them if people share the information with them.

Privacy changes to facilitate user interaction

For instance, it will be in a position to offer reminders you are going to get late for an office meeting based on your location and your calendar along with an understanding of the traffic situation that day. By blending your account information, the site can make sure that its spelling suggestions, even that for your colleagues’ names, are correct since you have typed them before. The changes take effect from March 1, 2012.

Google is going to draw information from its services like Gmail, YouTube, Google search, Picasa etc, ostensibly aimed at data integration for the user’s benefit. It will be able to integrate everything in its ecosystem such as location data, search preferences, personal habits, calendar appointments, contacts and so on.

Privacy concerns crop up

Already data-protection agencies in countries like France and Ireland are going to assess the implications. Certain consumer-advocacy groups are fretting about the fact that policy will make it easier for the global search engine giant to target ads to specific groups. This might end up inconveniencing users and make it tougher for them to stop the activities the company can perform with their personal information.

Media experts describe the development as potentially frightening and pretty frustrating from a standpoint point of individual users and overall consumer privacy parameters. An official post from Google tries to allay the fears, by stating:

Google’s clarification to criticism

In a clarification to criticism, Google’s official post mentions:

“A lot has been said about our new privacy policy. Some have praised us for making our privacy policy easier to understand. Others have asked questions, including members of Congress, and that’s understandable too. But we are making things simpler and trying to be upfront about it.

You can use as much or as little of Google as you want. For example, you can have a Google Account and choose to use Gmail, but not use Google+. Or you could keep your data separate with different accounts — for example, one for YouTube and another for Gmail.”

As already reported, regulators took umbrage after Google publicized changes earlier this month to its search engine, making information from Google Plus, its fledgling social networking service, available in a user’s search results. Major players in the social space such as Twitter felt that the selective integration of social and search on part of Google would favor Google Plus.

It remains to be seen how things shape up in the near future…

A step ahead to integrate social information with search results

As documentation on an array of networking as well as virtual platforms gets increasingly popular, Google is striving to capitalize on the trend by integrating relevant social information with search results. The global search giant’s idea works thus: when a user logs into the search account with same id used on a networking platform (Google Plus) and Gmail, results page would be modified to suit feedback and reviews from contacts on that user’s list, based on his or her social profile. Continue reading