Facebook Roundup: Data Center, Credits, eBay, Spotify, Delta and Cristiano Ronaldo

Rumor: AOL, Facebook Talk Ad Alliance – The New York Post reports that Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and AOL CEO Tim Armstrong have been discussing a “strategic alliance” that would boost the companies’ respective online ad businesses. Discussions have purportedly been on for months, and a deal might allow Facebook to tap into AOL’s online ad power and AOL to dump much of its content into social media, post-Bebo. AOL could potentially be named a “preferred media partner,” according to the story, but Facebook said it doesn’t comment on “market rumors.”

Facebook, Google Approach Data Centers Differently – An interesting piece in The Dalles Chronicle points out that Facebook and Google have taken radically different approaches to constructing their data centers in Oregon. The article characterized Google as standoffish, secretive and not always smooth with the locals on site whereas Facebook — headed by one of the former leaders of Google’s data center — has sent employees to meet with local leaders and disclosed construction plans early on. In other example, as we wrote previously, Facebook recently co-sponsored a local music event and pie bake-off at its site in Crook County.

Facebook Changes Notes – Facebook has changed its Notes app to allow people to bold, italicize, underline, use bullets, numbered lists or indented quotes without having to use the HTML tags. Users will now also be able to tag Pages in Note. Finally, a new menu on the left side allows for quick perusal of a user’s own Notes, Notes about you or Notes that might interest you.

CloudCrowd raises $5.1 M – CloudCrowd, which networks with workers around the world to bring labor into the cloud, previously raised $5.1 million recently and previously raised $1.5 million, according to TechCrunch. We wrote extensively about CloudCrowd’s business recently, the company bills itself as an on-demand labor-as-a-service crowdsourcing company which uses a Facebook application to assign tasks to workers, more at the link.

Appbistro Raises $550K – Appbistro raised $550,000 in funding recently from a variety of angel investors; the startup is essentially a market of apps for Page developers. Appbistro launched in May, according to TechCrunch, and so far 10,000 apps have been downloaded from the web site.

Rixty: Redeem Coins, Get Facebook Credits – Virtual currency provider Rixty is running a promotion from Aug. 9 through Sept. 7 that combines its Coinstar coin counting kiosks with Facebook Credits. the promotion allows users to redeem vouchers from Coinstar kiosks for Credits, up to 10 free Credits for redeeming their kiosk balance for a Rixty voucher. They can earn up to 105 more free Credits for exchanging these vouchers for Credits at the $0.199/Credit tax, depending on the value of the voucher.

Facebook Seattle Page – Facebook recently opened the Seattle office we wrote about in May and the company consequently published a Page for the office. Thus far the Page has about 530 Likes and Wall content, as well as a note including basic information and a photo of the view from the office.

Facebook Nears Saturation in UK – Hitwise’s numbers in the United Kingdom show that, while Facebook is still very popular, the social network may be nearing saturation. The amount of time people spend on the site decreased slightly and growth has slowed over the past six months. Check out our premium service, Inside Facebook Gold, for more information on growth by country.

eBay Thanks Like Button for Revenue – eBay has reportedly attributed part of its $2.2 billion increase in revenue last quarter to Facebook’s Like button. The Like button has been part of eBay’s Daily Deals or Fashion Vault promotions and company executive say Facebook’s social plugins represent some of the best marketing tools currently available.

Spotify Designer Joins Facebook – Rasmus Andersson, the former chief designer at Spotify, has left to join Facebook as a product designer. At Spotify, Andersson worked on creative and art direction, interaction and graphic design, brand identity and user interaction, among other things. He’ll be moving to San Francisco as part of his new job. On his blog he said that working with basic human needs, such as music and social interaction, has been the focus of his professional life. [Photo via]

Swiss Pharma Censured Over Facebook Info – Swiss drug maker Novartis ran into trouble with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) this week over a widget on the company’s web site promoting its leukemia tasigna drug. Under current laws drug companies must present the pros along with the cons of any drug in advertisements, but the widget allowed Facebook users to share information promoting the product without any of the warning information. We wrote about the thin line pharmaceutical companies are currently walking by promoting products on social media spaces; the government is still considering regulations for social media drug promotions.

Book Delta Flights on Facebook – Delta’s new Ticket Window app allows users to book flights directly on Facebook. The app is powered by Alvenda.

Shout Out with Shoutworthy – Facebook Connect integration Shoutworthy is set up to allow people to professionally recommend their Facebook friends by profession and broadcast a short message about this recommendation over Twitter and Facebook.

Hospitals Contend with Facebook – Hospital administrators in California, as well as other places, are having trouble controlling what employees post about their work on Facebook. This is a particular problem due to U.S. medical confidentiality laws, especially in hospitals in Southern California where celebrities often go for treatment. So far, hospitals have responded by firing staffers who break the laws by posting photos or other confidential information on Facebook and by mounting their own social media campaigns.

UK’s Panic Button a Success – The United Kingdom’s experience with the so-called “Panic Button” to allow children to report inappropriate behavior on Facebook has been deemed successful by authorities there. The application has been downloaded more than 55,000 times and the 211 reports generated from it were serious offenses, such as “sexual grooming.” More at the link.

New Jersey Police Post Mug Shots – The Evesham Township police have begun posting the mug shots of local offenders, like drunk drivers, on Facebook. CNET reports that, while this is interesting, it does open up a strange can of worms because the photos can be tagged, which could lead to mischief.

Ronaldo Gets 10 Million Fans – Portuguese footballer Cristiano Ronaldo passed 10 million Likes on Facebook this week, making him the first non-American person to do so.