Instagram Tags, Step Journal, Facebook’s Trusted Contacts, Boston vs NYC Food Truck Showdown


Top Story: Instagram adds Tags

 th21 800 instagram tagging example

We all know that familiar pang of anxiety when you see that a friend has tagged you in a Facebook photo after a night out on the town. Well thankfully, the same feeling will now apply to the increasingly popular photo-sharing platform, Instagram.

Instagram recently upgraded to version 3.5, bringing a slew of features to its platform. The major change is that users will no longer have to rely on mentioning other users via the ubiquitous “@” symbol in the description below a photo.

Tagging others is as simple as a touch. After you upload a photo (*cough* selfie) you’ll be given the option to “Add People.” Then touch a person in the photo, start typing their name, and select them from the drop down menu. The feature, known as “Photos of You” will appear as a tab on the far right-hand of a user’s profile and will display all tagged photos.  This update is particularly useful for brands on Instagram as users will be able to tag a brand or venue’s username in photos as well.

When you have been tagged in a photo, you will be sent a notification and the image will automatically appear in the “Photos of You” tab. Of course, like Facebook, there is a massive potential for embarrassing photo tag. Thankfully, Instagram is giving you the option to remove tags and turn on a setting that requires your approval before you can be tagged in photos. Even better, outsiders won’t be able to go tag-happy since only the owner of the photo can tag others.

Instagram hopes to make it easier for users to share and discover content with this update. Photos will no longer be present solely on your profile, but across the platform on the profiles of those you’ve tagged. This feature can greatly increase a brand, user, or venues online fanbase. On May 16th is set as the launch date, when Photos of You will become visible to others. Until then, you will have private access to test-run the feature.

What do you think about this new tagging feature?


Tool of the Week: Step Journal


From Instagram to Twitter to Facebook, most of us are capturing and sharing a huge amount of our daily lives through social media platforms but what if we could see all that data in one place? Step journal does just that. It aggregates the personal data you have scattered across various social media platforms in a private, visually attractive mobile app.

Developed by South Korea-based WePlanet, Step is easy to use with two main screens: the dashboard tracks your top activities and places visited, while the interface allows you to check in, take photos, and add activities with Step’s icons. It’s adaptive user interface arranges the icons based on the ones you use most, making it easier the more you use it. “We are positioning Step as a lifestyle aggregator,” says developer Jay Mok. “We want to collect all this fragmented data and deliver to users one very simple tool to capture their lives. As we like to say, you can use Step to click, capture and collect your life.”

This is the perfect tool for those of us who would love to keep track of our lives, but do not necessarily have the time to sit down and write it all down. With the capability of integrating your Facebook, Twitter, and Foursquare accounts, Step does a lot of your daily activity logging for you.

“We want to find people who use social media for life logging, but don’t like the privacy issues or want the social aspect. Step can be used to capture their lives quickly, and then they can post it to Twitter or Facebook later,” says Mok.

Step is currently available on iOS, with an Android version in the works.

What do you think about Step? Would you use it?


Under the Radar: Facebook’s Trusted Contacts

facebook screen 2_0

How much do you trust your friends – enough to give them access to your Facebook? Yesterday, Facebook launched their new Trusted Contacts privacy feature allowing users to select three to five confidants from your friend list to receive the virtual key to your account. This new feature was put into place in the case that if your account was ever hacked or you forgot your password, these Trusted Contacts have the codes to get you in.

First announced in 2011 originally as Trusted Friends, this feature did not launch until yesterday because “The bulk of our work was making this more proactive (allowing you to select your friends ahead of time) than reactive (selecting your friends after you couldn’t get into your account),” said Frederic Wolens of Facebook Policy Communications.

With a two-step authentication process and the normal password recovery option, how useful is Trusted Contacts really? Also, the feature begs the question – do you trust your friends not to abuse their power? What do you think?


Around the Hub: The Battle Rages On: Boston vs New York Food Trucks


Last year was the first (hopefully of many) Food Truck Throwdown’s, which Kickass Cupcake’s owner Sarah Ross came up with, and thankfully Boston won! This year though, the second annual Throwdown is getting bigger and better, due in no small part to the huge increase in food trucks in Boston and New York. One way they are doing that is a unique partnership with Maker’s Mark, which will not have any bourbon there to drink (unfortunately), but will be incorporated into food items that can win a new award called “Best of Maker’s Mark Bourbon.” 

To further legitimize the concept, is a host of awesome judges, including; Toro’s Jamie Bissonnette, Boston Burger Blog’s Richard Chudy, Tom O’Keefe (@BostonTweet) and local sports producer John Albanese. To top it all off, jenny Johnson of NECN and TV Diner will be hosting.

Last year included 9 categories (and 9 winners), this year features only 4 categories; Best Overall, Best of Boston, Best of New York and the aforementioned Best of Maker’s Mark Bourbon. Each truck will be scored for each category on a 15 point scale, with 10 points going to taste and 5 to visual appeal and creativity.

Now here is what you really want to know:

Free admission
Saturday, May 4th, 2013