This Week in Social: Silver Social Surfers, Pinterest Tweaks, Facebook Acquires Parse

By Rob McNair

Middle-aged and senior social media users on the rise

Ofcom, the UK’s telecoms regulator, have found that there has been significant growth in social networking among older internet users. Ofcom’s Adult media Users and Attitudes Report examined 2012 UK data and found that more than a third (35%) of 55 to 65 year-old internet users created a profile on a social network site last year. This is a significant increase from 24% in 2011.

A quarter (25%) of users aged 65+ also set up profiles in 2012. Younger users (16-24) still dominate the data, but new users are only up 2% from 2011, this would probably be because the majority of younger Internet users would already have a social media presence.

Ofcom said that about two-thirds (64%) of all the UK’s adult Internet users had a social networking presence in 2012, up 5% from 2011.

The following graphic is from page 91 of the Ofcom report.


Pinterest makes some tweaks to new look

The new look Pinterest is still in the process of rolling out to users but that hasn’t stopped them from making some changes on the way. The Pinterest team has listened to feedback and re-added some features to make the site even more user-friendly.

The ‘Pinned by’ feature, which lets users see who originally pinned an item, is back.

As is the ability to find friends from Twitter and Facebook and users can now mention friends using the @ symbol again.

Users are still able to ‘opt-in’ to use the new look, which is a different method to Facebook and Twitter who release features slowly before releasing to the masses.

As well as these re-introductions, Pinterest now also has an improved search, with an auto-suggest included.  Users’ activity notifications are also now in the top right corner.

pin 2



Facebook acquires startup Parse to offer mobile development tools

Facebook has acquired Parse, a startup that builds back-end tools for mobile developers. This will allow Facebook to offer its first paid B2B service.

Parse was founded around two years ago, they offer services that help mobile developers store data in the cloud, manage identity log-ins, handle push notifications and run custom code in the cloud.

This move is hand-in-hand with Facebook’s push to become more relevant to mobile developers, as they don’t make their own devices like Apple or Google.  But, Facebook integrations with apps can make them sticker and help developers acquire new users.

With the help of Parse, Facebook will now be able to offer back-end services for data storage, notifications and user management.

This post was written by Rob McNair

Rob has experience advising some of the worlds most iconic brands. He thrives on helping improving social media knowledge within organisations with the ultimate goal of making theirs brands more social, transparent and accountable.