“lol” is slowly dying out as chuckling millennials search for other ways to express their enjoyment on social

A new report from Facebook into how users express laughter shows that “haha” and its variants are by far the most common terms used on the social network. They accounted for 51.4 per cent of mirth in the anonymised comments and posts looked at by Facebook’s data team, with the ‘laughing’ emoji claiming 33.7 per cent, and “hehe”, 13.1 per cent. The once-mighty “lol” only appeared in 1.9 percent of the text sampled by Facebook – a staggering fall for an expression that was once synonymous with online txt speak.

“Although not surprising for such a venerable term, “lol” proved slightly more popular with older users. Differences between generations were not heavily pronounced, but it was emoji that were most popular with users with the youngest median age, while “haha,” “hehe,” and “lol” were favoured by progressively older individuals. The data also showed that emoji were more popular among female users, with “haha” showing a small male bias, and “hehe” distributed nearly evenly among the genders. Not many people were regular chortlers though: in the week’s worth of data Facebook looked at, 46 per cent of those that laughed in the seven days did so only once, with the vast majority laughing fewer than five times.

To read the full article, visit The Verge.

Could animated GIFs replace emojis as our standard response in conversations? Or are they nothing more than an irritating web fad?

The GIF is on the rise. The New York Times reported today on the new popularity of GIFs, which have seen a notable upswing in use increasing since 2012. Social networks are making it easier than ever to integrate GIFs into posts. Facebook announced true support on the site this past March, and Twitter did the same last summer.

“As the New York Times notes, this increasing propensity toward GIF use may signal the rise of a new language made possible by mobile and text-driven communication. Linguists already say that emojis are a new language. Will animated GIFs prove the same?

To read the full article, visit Social Media Today.

Forget emojis and GIFs, it’s social apps that users can’t bear to be without in 2015

What’s the first thing you do every morning when you wake up? For many of us, it’s checking-in with our social media networks, as evidenced by new data from mobile ad platform, Opera Mediaworks. Utilising insights from their client base of over 1.1 billion users (including 90% of the top Ad Age Global Advertisers) across 19,000 sites and apps, researchers from Opera found that social media apps are the most commonly used “first app of the day” for users in the US, with entertainment apps most common for “last app of the day” use.

“Researchers also found that apps in the “News and Information” category had the highest loyalty, with the most consistent first and last app of the day usage across the period, while sports apps were the only category to have a larger morning than evening audience.

To read the full article, visit Social Media Today.

We all have that one app we just couldn’t live without. The Verge’s Thomas Ricker reveals his choice

What’s the one app you can’t live without? It’s a tough question.

“Looking at my iPhone, I have five screens full of icons, or roughly 130 apps that I carry with me at all times. Several are junk apps that Apple preinstalls and won’t let me delete, but the other 100 or so are apps I purposely downloaded over the years. Usually out of want, rarely out of need.

“Some of these apps are there for business purposes. Strictly speaking, in a hunter/gatherer kind of way, I can’t live without them because they help pay the bills. But I wouldn’t say they enhance my life. Google Maps is definitely high on the list. It’s certainly made it easier getting from point A to B. But it’s not an app I use every day.

“Having given it some thought, I’d say that the one app I can’t live without is something called Buienradar – a Dutch weather app. Buienradar gives me reliable weather forecasts at 10 minute increments into the future, including alerts for severe weather. Should I bring a jacket? Is it too windy to bicycle? Do I need an umbrella or a rain suit? These are the questions my weather app answers several times a day as I try to live my life in relative comfort. It’s the app that has to be in competing app stores should I ever switch platforms. It’s the one app I can’t live without.

To read the full article, visit The Verge.

Have you got that one app you just can’t help but check even when you know you shouldn’t? Let us know your digital vice!

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