Social Media Newsfeed: Yelp Review | LinkedIn [in]cubator

By Tim Sohn 

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YelpFree Speech Isn’t Free for Yelp Reviewer (SocialTimes)
An Internet flame war had real-world consequences for the Virginia woman whose contractor sued her for her bad reviews on Angie’s List and Yelp. Dietz Development filed a $750,000 lawsuit against Jane Perez after she alleged that the contractor had trespassed on her property, damaged her home and even stolen her jewelry. PC Magazine “Dietz Development LLC was to perform: painting, replenish floors, electrical, plumbing, and handyman work. I was instead left with damage to my home and work that had to be reaccomplished for thousands more than originally estimated,” Perez wrote in a February 2012 Yelp review. TechCrunch Dietz Development is claiming that Perez’s scathing review has cost them new customers and, on Wednesday, a judge ordered a preliminary injunction for her to edit the post. Yelp and legal critics are worried that Strategic Lawsuits Against Public Participation (SLAPP)-related lawsuits could chill free speech, but business owners say that legal intervention is necessary in an age when online reviews can make or break a company. CNET
Perez has removed her Yelp review. This, she says, is because Dietz fired back at her online and made false statements. CNBC The lawsuit follows an earlier case against Perez, which was filed in July 2011 by Dietz for unpaid invoices. According to the recent filing, the two were high school classmates.

LinkedIn Unveils Supported Employee Innovation Program, [in]cubator (SocialTimes)
LinkedIn announced a program Friday to support employee innovation projects within the company. Every LinkedIn employee will have the opportunity to pitch a project to the executive team once per quarter. WebProNews If approved, the employee and his/her team get up to three months to dedicate time and energy to realizing the vision. Though not every project will get the green light, for at least some LinkedIn workers, this will be be the equivalent of 25 percent time. VentureBeat The safe cocoon was created after the company noticed that its monthly Friday “hackdays” were resulting in viable product prototypes, [in]cubator executive sponsor and LinkedIn engineering senior vice president Kevin Scott wrote in a blog post. “A group of our ‘hackday masters’ [employees who’ve won three-plus hackdays] came up with the concept of [in]cubator as a way to take hackdays to the next level. They evangelized the program internally, pitched the idea to the executive staff, got approval, and have been piloting the program for several months,” Scott said.

How I Got a 12.5 Percent Click-Through Rate on Facebook (AllFacebook)
Have you played with the news feed position report on Facebook? In addition to the standard ad-level metrics of impressions, clicks and spend, you can see news feed click-through rates and news feed position.

Tech Industry Helps Local Economies Across U.S., Study Finds (SocialTimes)
Technology is growing, not just in Silicon Valley, but across the United States, and the employment benefits spread out to other industries as well, according to a study released by the Bay Area Council Economic Institute. The industry has swelled its payroll by about 11 percent since the lowest point of the Dot Com bust, and unemployment rates among tech workers have been consistently lower than average rates in the United States since then.

Worst Idea Ever: Fortune 500 Cable Company Turning Off All Twitter and Social Media Support (AllTwitter)
Charter, the “4th largest cable operator in the U.S.” announced it is turning off all social media support for clients on Friday, Dec. 14. Sure, customer service is a lot of work, particularly online – but just because they turn off their accounts and stop responding, do the folks at @Charter really think customers won’t publicly mention them?

‘Charlie Bit My Finger’ Hits Half a Billion Views, Launches Spin-off Series (SocialTimes)
As Gangnam Style approaches 1 billion views, another viral video is making history on YouTube as well. Friday, “Charlie Bit My Finger” became the first non-professional, non-music video to surpass half a million YouTube views.

How to Put Your Audiobook on Spotify (GalleyCat)
Author Craig Seymour self-funded an audiobook edition of his memoir, “All I Could Bear: My Life in the Strip Clubs of Gay Washington D.C.” earlier this year. Inspired by a GalleyCat article with SoundCloud advice for writers, he decided to upload the audiobook to both SoundCloud and Spotify.

Google to Charge $50 Per User, Per Year for Business Apps (AppNewser)
Google has decided to start charging $50 per user, per year for companies that use Google Apps for businesses. Existing customers will not be charged this new fee, and individuals can still open a free personal account.

Social Media Stock Tracker: Negative Pressure from Pandora (SocialTimes)
The social media sector was down an average of 4 percent last week as it was negatively impacted by Pandora’s third-quarter report and fourth-quarter concerns for AAPL. There was downward pressure on FB shares despite its potential addition to the NASDAQ 100 index this week, which should promote further institutional purchases through rebalancing.