Facebook Open Graph

Users have agreed to authorizations, but understanding how to use Open Graph is critical to enhancing the experience of the user. By authorizing third party applications to retrieve personal data, access to post on a user’s timeline and specific actions the user takes through Facebook Connect the application can better understand the user. However, Open Graph is specific and the data authorized to code must be exact in determining what actions to code before posting onto the users timeline.

For Open Graph to reach its full potential, it’s important for the users to agree to the correct permissions so the right data can be recorded. These permissions include the content that the third party app has access to and what actions the app can make on a user’s site. Whether the app is interested in basic information, likes, locations, photos, interests or information about a users friends, these authorizations are the foundation of gathering data from the user. Facebook Developers present a full list along with the coding specifics on the permissions that an app can grant to users.

Facebook Open Graph is the cornerstone of understanding the user. Without Open Graph the idea of data efficiency is too simple. However, Open Graph allows third-party applications, such as Rotten Tomatoes, to display and post information on your Facebook Timeline. The specific information posted on Timeline depends on the type of data needed to understand the constituent.


Facebook Open Graph relies on actions. The third party application must record an action from the user and then post information on the timeline for the user’s friends to see or interact with.

Facebook Developers cites three steps of operation of Facebook Open Graph.

1-User takes an action in your app

2-App POSTS the action to Facebook

3-Facebook GETS your object’s metadata.


So what exactly is an action or the process you might be asking? It’s simplethe user’s action might be to read something. Reading is the action and what they are reading is the object. The user, action and object are all key ingredients to Facebook Open Graph.


Enrique Gutierrez, in What Facebook OpenGraph means For You, describes actions that can be recorded as what a user is reading, clicking,  typing, commenting on, sharing, visiting, mouse scrolling and many other actions.

Overall, actions are determined by both what the user does and what the app wants to record and publish on Timeline. This could be watching, reading, listening to or anything else that the app could possibly think of recording.


            Facebook developers describe the Metadata as “tags to describe the type of the object, the name of the object and other key information.” These tags are the technical features necessary to code the users data to post on the timeline. The Open Graph Protocol describes four required properties for every page as the following.

Og:title – title of the object,

og:type – the TYPE of object,

og:image- image URL, or the image within the graph,

og:url – the URL that will be associated with the site.

A meta data tag might look like this:

<meta property = “og:title”content=”website”/>

The coded actions would be put into the various sections of the metatag and then the information would be posted onto the users timeline.


While the actual code required for Open Graph is much more in-depth and detailed, the code above is the type required to code the data users produce. It’s important to determine beforehand what type of data should be authorized to code, because it’s not efficient to code information that is not needed for the sake of the application or constituent.


So how does Open Graph work into the business model you might be asking? Third parties can utilize Facebook Connect for users to connect their Facebook profile to that of the website or application of the third party company. In comes Open Graph. Open Graph gives the third party the ability to take the data, actions, activity, interests, etc. and apply them to understand the constituent. If the data is coded correctly, then the data the user contributes will be able to enhance the experience for the constituent, the third party and the users friends. Finally, the actions the user takes are posted on Facebook for all to see. The general idea of how third party applications can take advantage of Open Graph is through data efficiency.

Public Pressure

There is a considerable amount of public pressure that arises with utilizing Open Graph. Users are hesitant to accept authorizations for an app that asks for too much information, but it’s also important to limit the nature of what data Open Graph uses and what information is posted in Facebook Timeline. There is a line between enhancing the Facebook experience for the user and posting person information. When using Facebook Open Graph to enhance the experience of user and use the data efficiently, the third party app must determine how the information posted and data retrieved can understand the constituent. The third party application will receive the users data, specifics on friends and other valuable information; therefore, the app must provide a valuable service to the constituent. Finding the medium is a small price to pay for the incredible amount of data available for both the app developer and in understanding and enhancing the experience for the constituent.



Altimeter Group and Rotten Tomatoes

Implementing programs to efficiently use Big Data to benefit both the business and the constituent is critical in the coming age. However, if businesses are unable to deal with technological advancements than relevance to change with technology puts businesses in a difficult spot.  The Altimeter Group is a research-based advisory group that helps businesses deal with disruptive technologies. Facebook Connect, Open Graph and Big Data are all major components of the progressing landscape of how data is changing business operation. Changes in big data and how to use data efficiently can be perceived as a disruptive technology for businesses that do not have the capabilities to make sense or implement changes in technology. However, groups like The Altimeter Group, provide a service for these businesses to ensure that they are not left behind and can adapt to change. The Altimeter Group offers services in the following areas “Advisory Sessions, Thought Leadership, and Research Projects.”

The Altimeter Group highlights specific research themes that are important to consider.

These research themes highlight not only how the technology can disrupt the business, but also how to effectively deal with the technology.These themes also deal directly with Really Gets Me, because they ask the questions of how organizations can engage their constituents technological and innovative demands.

So, how does Altimeter apply to Big Data? The Altimeter Group provides a valuable service to businesses to take advantage of to ensure that they are not left in the dark as data age approaches. Big Data and efficiently utilizing contributed data for the benefit of the company and the constituent is the future and The Altimeter Group is one of the players designed to ensure that businesses can adapt and survive digital innovations that play such a critical role in technological advancements of the future.


The movie suggestions that Netflix and other video streaming sites provide is tied heavily to content you have already viewed, but does not take advantage of the recommendations from a users friends. The new Rotten Tomatoes Facebook Open Graph and Facebook Connect capabilities allows users to interact, recommend movies and this adds a new element to gathering data on the viewing habits of individuals.Rotten Tomatoes was one of the 60 applications that Facebook unveiled that could utilize Open Graph conveniently through the timeline. Movie ratings, reviews, and other personalized experiences will be taken from the users to the Facebook timeline. Rotten Tomatoes takes the information that users contribute and link the information onto Facebook.Users can receive specific movie information or other updates using the Rotten Tomatoes app. This personalization about movie viewing and recommendations enhances not only the interaction between friends, but also what Rotten Tomatoes can gather from users of the app.

Individuals can log into Facebook from the Rotten Tomatoes Site where then individuals can see your movies to watch list, reviews and other information that individuals put onto Facebook. Overall, this app utilizes data that the user must contribute on Rotten Tomatoes and links it to their Facebook to share friends. Rotten Tomatoes seeks to enhance the experience of movie recommendations, interacting with friends about movie reviewing and references.

The Rotten Tomatoes app will post movie related information for you and requires a much shorter than usual list of authorizations by requiring just you basic information and email address. Overall, Rotten Tomatoes uses Open Graph and Facebook Connect to  gather movie viewing, preference and review data from both users and their friends. This efficient use of data benefits both Rotten Tomatoes, the Facebook user and friends of the Facebook user.

No more clutter!


You should how full my email gets. Every day I get several emails from various coupon companies that only understand me by my region or the information I contribute. On almost all occasions I immediately send these coupons to the trash or they get caught up in my SPAM box. Why? Because coupons on getting my nails done, eating Chinese Food (which I don’t care for) or going on lavish vacations do NOT understand me. This approach to coupons is inefficient and is no longer relevant for either the company or the constituent.


I have a pretty straightforward routine. One of my most favorite aspects of my routine is when I take my girlfriend, Katelyn, to eat Mexican Food and then we both love heading to the movies. Also, with my disposable income I buy a lot of movies or other forms of entertainment. These are only some of the aspects of my routine. The inefficient way of receiving random coupons that don’t appeal to me does not understand or enhance my week.

What if there was a way that I could have coupons directly pushed toward me that understood what I like, where I go to eat? Well, this idea exists now! I can be understood according to the data and information I contribute for free!


I log in through Facebook Connect and through this information, Movies and Restaurants I like, Places I visit, Interests, Books, etc. etc. This efficient use of data through Opengraph and Facebook I am able now to receive only relevant coupons that understand who I am and what I want!


So what does my email and social media look like now? Well this morning I received a coupon for El Nopal, which is where I am going to lunch! Yesterday I was able to get two movie tickets for the price of one! Instead of seeing the coupons I receive through my email as clutter, instead I see it as an opportunity to help me decide what direction my day is headed. It really gets me!

This is precisely how I think Valpak can understand the constituents. Users contribute a great amount of information, likes, behaviors, places they travel and a good indicator of their routine on Facebook. Facebook Connect and Open Graph can provide an efficient way for the data users contribute on Facebook as a way for companies to understand the constituent and provide relevant coupons to enhance their routine. No more clutter in mailbox and no more inefficient use of coupons.


Billy Beane and his carefully selected team of statistical efficient underachievers surely have changed the perception of winning in sports. As an avid fan of sports and growing interest new media technology I find the Moneyball scenario intriguing. When this past week’s ESPN The Magazine was delivered I was pleasantly surprised to see the entire issue catered toward analytics. The issue included various articles about how sports teams are using analytics. This issue included articles from Oakland A’s pitcher Brandon McCarthy utilizing metrics in Saviormetrics an overview of how the Oklahoma City Thunder in Method Actors and Crazy Crap Analytics Can Prove. However, there was one article that most notably stuck out to me about The University of Miami.

The article by Peter Keating, Crunch Time, concerning the idea of offensive efficiency in basketball caught my eye. Miami Hurricanes head coach, Jim Larranaga, (sports fans might remember him as the head coach of George Mason during their impressive March Madness run in 2006) has employed a system of using data in determining offensive efficiency from his players. Basically, data is used to determine how the teams perform when certain players are out on the court. This is important in figuring out the optimal players on the court at the same time for the best performance of the team. This idea is measured in terms of +/_(insert points allowed or scored per 100 possessions).

Below is an example of a Box Store of a Hawks game from ESPN.com. In the far right of the box score is the +/-  that can be used to determine what lineup is the most successful. Using this type of data can help determine the optimal lineup for a team to win games.

The Keating piece lists a few websites Larranaga consults for stats. These stats contain a variety of unique statistics.

KenPom.com. Not going to lie. The amount of statistics and the nature of what they can tell from this KenPom.com are overwhelming. I watch a lot of sports and enjoy empirical evidence when determining my bracket for March Madness, but this site has opened up a world of new statistics from Pyth to AdjT. I had to research how these types of statistical values contribute.Pyth, an extension of Pythagorean expectation from Bill James, adapted by Daryl Morey, attempts to understand how many games a team should win.

Another site, WarrenNolan.com, provides statistics, graphs and charts.

ESPN has also started airing a show, Numbers Never Lie, weekdays on ESPN2 at 3:30. Since my interest in data has grown I have become intrigued with this show. Numbers Never Lie, hosted by Michael Smith and Charissa Thompson, takes topics in sports and applying statistical numbers within the arguments. Below are links to just some of the approaches Numbers Never Lie takes to combine data to help predict and argue sports.

Explaining Super Bowl XLVI: Numbers Never Lie

Numbers Never Lie – Should Broncos Commit To Tebow?

I have decided to introduce some of these same principles into my own Fantasy Baseball management strategy and how I fill out my March Madness Bracket. Sure, it’s just fantasy baseball and to those who are not familiar or interested will not understand. However, I am quite interested to see how utilizing data efficiency in sports will help me in picking players and teams in fantasy sports.

This idea of offensive efficiency in basketball in the Keating article in ESPN Magazine is an intriguing, Moneyball-esque presentation showing that this efficient use of data can not only be used across sports, but in ANY aspect. Sports are just the example, the story, and the explanation, but the principles are universal. Data is becoming trendy. Jim Larranga, Billy Beane, Numbers Never Lie and the other sports analytics experts are taking full advantage of the true value of data efficiency. These same principles can be used for Valpak and any other company willing to explore the endless nature of data efficiency.

4 Topics

Looking at some of the other posts I think we have a lot of good ideas of how to include more information that will enhance our  report.

4 Topics that have come to my mind for us to include in the report are Opengraph, Types of Data, Data Efficiency and Future Technologies.


-Explanation of what it is and how it can be used for efficiency. An indepth look at Opengraph and why it’s important in data efficiency.

2-Types of Data

-Open and Closed

-Structured and Unstructured


3- Data Efficiency

-The importance of data efficiency. Moneyball and some of the examples we have read about in some of the articles can be     used in this section to reinforce the idea of why data efficiency is critical.

4-Future Technoogies

-What type of technological advancements or capabilities should be be expected in data or  new media technology in the         future.

Coupon Applications

I must admit that I have been exposed to the wonderful and financially rewarding world of coupons! Just recently I saved $2 on miniature golf and I was also able to save money on my girlfriends flowers for Valentines Day! It has now become second nature to search for coupons for the restaurants and places that I visit. More than anything else, this makes me sure that implementing a way for Valpak to use the data to enhance the experience of the constituent and Really Get the consumer.In all honesty, this type of experience would be good for myself and I can only imagine it would make others coupon experiences more efficient.

Understanding how other coupon applications (apps) operate is important in understanding what sort of capabilities are necessary for the consumer to utilize the benefits. I looked at two other innovative and popular coupon applications alongside Valpak. Group and Living Social are two examples of the app competitors of Valpak. Both Living Social and Groupon have introduced capabilities of Facebook Connect for their constituents. It’s important to figure out how they’re using it and how Valpak can utilize these efforts more efficiently. Already, these other two website require individuals purchase the coupon, however Valpak offers coupons that can be redeemed free. Therefore, Valpak can not only compete, but provide a separate, more efficient service.

Living Social is a trendy, aesthetically pleasing app that includes crisp pictures and a well organized lay out. Consumers must purchase the coupons and the app works in basic fashion like the many, many other coupon apps.

Groupon is the standard for coupon apps. It allows you to track by location, send them to your email, share with friend, etc. However, the one interesting capability of Groupon is that consumers can customize “deal types” to personalize the coupons that they receive. In some efforts they can group this type of capability with the Facebook Connect, but it is still unsure to what level they use Facebook Connect.

Interesting enough, Groupon does utilize Facebook Connect capabilities to use likes and interests to send more coupons for the consumer. However, I think that Really Gets Me can go a step beyond this idea, because Valpak can offer coupons that do not require individuals to purchase. The fact that Groupon is utilizing this capability already furthers the idea that Valpak needs to pursue this type of technology. It will be important to clarify how using Facebook Connect and the Open Graph technology for Valpak will be more efficient for the consumer.

This seems like a good way for the individuals to receive coupons, but I think that Really Gets Me goes further than YOU setting YOUR preferences and instead uses your data efficiently to customize the coupons and experience.

This leads me to Valpak. Like the other two coupon applications and many others, it allows you to search by business and business. However, Valpak offers two types of coupons. The type you can redeem without purchasing and the other type that you must purchase first. Also, you can simply show your phone screen to the cashier for savings without having to  print.

These apps are very similar in what they offer. Sure, the aesthetics and outlook of the app is different, but what the constituent gets from the company is very similar. All of these coupon apps provide similar capabilities and have begun using Facebook Connect as a method, but Valpak can uniquely offer a different approach to how Open Graph can be utilized to enhance the experience of the constituents. One thing is for sure, what Really Gets Me can offer to Valpak will help in their approach to utilizing data to enhance the experience of the consumer. This will allow the application process to be operate more efficiently.


My name is Ben Elliott and I am graduate student in the Grady College of Journalism and the University of Georgia. The concentration of my degree is in telecommunications and my primary interest is in new media technologies.

This semester, in the New Media Technology course in the New Media Institute we are researching and developing more efficient ways to utilize consumer data to provide a better service, Really Gets Me. Through this, Valpak can use data more efficiently to show the consumer that they really get them. The premise behind Really Gets Me is efficiency and determining how to use data to enhance the experience for both the constituent and Valpak.

Valpak does a tremendous job of distributing coupons across a wide array of platforms from online, cell phone, email, and phone application. Valpak also has a Facebook page, Twitter account and RSS feed. By converging the digital and email capabilities with the Facebook connect feature, Valpak can provide the same services with no complicated change for the consumer, but offer a service that really gets the consumer. Valpak offers its constituents a great service of Valpak can utilize the data gathered from the information provided by the consumer. This data can be gathered through the utilization of Facebook Connect into the distribution of coupons for Valpak. Valpak can take the data gathered through Open Graph to personalize the coupons for the constituent and provide a set of coupons that are directed to each individual consumer. This will enhance the experience by the constituents to receive coupons catered to their interests and behavior. The data gathered works for multiple parties. It generates a more efficient use of data for the constituent, Valpak and the advertiser.

Over the next 3 months I will be investing between 6 and 10 hours every week working on how to efficiently and effectively utilize Valpak’s data to better suit the constituents. All I ask in return is correspondence of no more than 5 emails over the next month and attendance of our show-off day on May 5th, 2012. During this show we will unveil a detailed account of how Valpak can efficiently reach the constituent with valuable and relevant coupons for each consumer. If you have any questions feel free to contact me at Ben.Elliott28@gmail.com.



Facebook Creep Factor

Where is the line? How far is Facebook allowed to go before its users decide enough is enough? It’s no doubt that age has its place with how users are concerned with their data being collected and saved. The younger generations of users has grown up in the data driven environment and are willing to sell their information, likes and interests for constant communication with ones friends. At what point do the users decide how their information is being used or collected as creepy? This is very important for the social media outlets to discover, because its necessary to determine at what point is it TOO much.

According to an Ad Age article, Facebook made up 52% of sharing in 2011. In fact, the new Facebook Timeline feature (which will be mandatory for the millions of users) will issue information more publicly to allow users to share their information easier, according to a Fox News article by John Quain. Quain even makes the point that “so if it’s illegal for the government to secretly track you, consumers should ask themselves, why isn’t illegal for businesses to do it?“ How convenient and nice of Facebook!

The Take This Lollipop video provides a creepy, fictional account that strikes fear in many who can see the negative aspects of social media. However, it’s these type of fictional portrayal of “social media gone wrong” can turn off the older crowd of users deeming social media as too public or creepy.

Located within the Facebook Privacy Policy is all the necessary information to realize what Facebook does with users data. This puts users at a decision point. Should users continue to allow the creepy activity of taking their information and posts, but continue to utilize the social connection with their friends or risk leaving the social network. Older generations fearing what COULD happen with their information being leaked are more likely to dump the account out.

While Facebook is working to continue to utilize the information posted by its users, it will also monitor how to stay just close enough to the “creep” line and collecting the information of its users, but not too close to drive the traffic away. This line is most important in determine how to keep the interest and “trust” of the younger generations of users. Sure, they might lose some older generation users, but they are not the future. It’s most important to keep in good relations with the younger generation users.

A study by Goldfarb and Tucker, According to Technology, Age and Privacy Concerns, shows patterns of how age is tied in with privacy concerns. This study took  over 3 million surveys conducted by a market research group over an 8 year period to develop their findings. Goldfarb and Tucker found that people refusing to reveal private information online has risen over time and that older individuals are less likely to reveal information than younger generations out of privacy concerns.

A Nielsen blog post shows the relation between phone application use and the concern of privacy by age.

An article in The Joplin Globe, Consumer Confidential: Facebook shows how privacy is passe, shows how privacy issues are divided amongst the generations. The younger generations “…can’t get enough social-media sauce on their cyber-sandwich. They view this technology not as an intrusion but as a life enhancement”. While the older generations, 30 and older, are more likely to pay close attention to privacy settings and what is put out into the open. This article shows the generational divide of how Facebook users react to the “creep” factor and bolster up the privacy settings.

According to a Wall Street Journal article, Facebook in Privacy Breach,

“the information being transmitted is one of Facebook’s basic building blocks: the unique “Facebook ID” number assigned to every user on the site. Since a Facebook user ID is a public part of any Facebook profile, anyone can use an ID number to look up a person’s name, using a standard Web browser, even if that person has set all of his or her Facebook information to be private. For other users, the Facebook ID reveals information they have set to share with “everyone,” including age, residence, occupation and photos.” The full details of the Facebook Privacy Policy is shown below.

So, with facebook’s new privacy policies, timeline features and amount of information ALWAYS made public, how does this fit in with the creep factor? Knowing your information is out on the web, does this creep you out? Surely, not enough to actually deactivate your account. Right?

Advanced Programming Interface (API)

Advanced Programming Interface (API) is a code provided by a webpage, blog or social media site to programmers for them to utilize the features a site. According to Techterms.com, API “allows programmers to use predefined functions to interact with the operating system, instead of writing them from scratch.” This open source code gives programmers, with the aid of software or other capabilities, the opportunity to further their experience. Sound’s difficult, huh? Between the technical language and computer programming terms it makes this concept seem complicated. However, the websites have done the groundwork and provided a foundation. API’s are available and can be utilized by all!

An article by Gareth Rushgrove in Digital Web Magazine provides a basis for how API, in simple terms, can be a benefit for individuals, programmers and the company itself. Rushgrove explains how a website gives its community an opportunity to enhance their experience, accessibility and usability of the site.

Programmable Web provides an API directory where it breaks down API’s by category, date and popularity. The directory provides programmers or individuals with tutorials, tips and a list of hundreds of API’s. Programmable Web is a good organized and comprehensive list of the capabilities of developed API’s.

API’s and Websites

Social Media websites also present API opportunities for programmers.  Twitter, Facebook and Flickr are of the largest social media sites. Websites have a separate link for their API capabilities.  API gives individuals a change to increase the experience with the website. Also, individuals creating an API will surely continue to access and utilize the website. However, it is important to also realize by using these codes provided by the websites there are policies, guidelines or rules to abide by.

Amazon allows users access to the “Product Advertising API” which gives individuals the programming capabilities to customize certain aspects of their product selling advertisement. So, whether you’re advertising for you

Twitter allows individuals the proper resources to create their own applications with an organized site. Dev.twitter.com/docs. Through this page, twitter provides support, policy information, tips to getting started and organizes how to utilize the proper code language to communication between other applications and twitter.

Flickr, a photo sharing community, provides codes for programmers to further the ability to share photos, galleries, etc. Programmers have many different options on how to utilize Flickr API’s through multiple resources.

Del.icio.us, provides a separate page, in which it releases all the codes organized with what the codes ready for the taking. This content ranges from updates, posts, to tagging and many more.

Programmers have even found ways to make money from API. By providing the code it’s then up to the programmers to let their creativity do the work. Ebay lists a developer page on how to make money creating API’s. These vary between marketing, commission and selling your services and apps. With all of the programming codes organized and available it’s up the individual to develop the creativity.

API’s and Data

API’s plays an important role in how data is utilized, because the language of the code can be written to utilize data from the websites providing the data. Info chimps, is a website that specializes on both data sets and data API’s. The site programmers have created API’s to generate the data from the sites the code came from. Using the source codes made available by websites for programming, API’s can become a good source of organizing and pulling together data.

The bottom line is you do not have to be a skilled and talented hacker to utilize API’s. Sure, it helps, but it is not necessary to enhance your web experience with the use of API’s. API is not a programming feature solely designed as a feature for only skilled programmers. Websites have provided the open source code and organized support, tips and tutorials on how to create API’s.

I think that API’s are a good way to allow individuals who are more tech savvy to customize and further utilize the capabilities of the website. It also provides individuals with endless amounts of opportunities on how to enhance their web experience and accessibility. API’s work to the advantage of both the individual programming and the website.





Cox Media – Valpak


Cox Media can utilize big data sources for the coupon based, Valpak. Cox Media, according to 2010 statistics, received over 3.85 billion combined page views. Of the stats, 1.17 billion web views came from the TV Station sites. Additionally, 475 million views came from mobile page views. The large frame of page views can be used as data to determine interests, activities, hobbies and spending patterns to further increase the effectiveness of the Valpak coupons made available. Outside of the postal service, Valpak offers services over the web, through a phone application, and in text messaging. Therefore, this creates a good source of data that can be utilized to really get the customer. The dependent variable, the Y,  consists of an increase of Valpak coupon usage. The independent variable consists of what specific data should be recorded. These include the interests, hobbies, activities and spending habits of the viewers. The data source is an open data source. The outcome of this data usage will provide a record of the spending habits, interests and traffic of individuals who visit the Cox Media sites to further the capabilities and effectiveness of the Valpak coupon book.

The constituents are the individuals who use the Valpak coupon book. Cox Media can show they really get them by using the data gathered from the mass amount of website traffic to generate interests, activities and other information that would lead to the best possible coupons Valpak can offer. Through this, the customer can get coupons that really get them. Valpak has contact capabilities of postal mail, phone applications, text messaging and online sites. Valpak can use the data to speak on a broad or individual level to determine the best possible coupons. Therefore, Valpak can utilize this data to show the coupon book advertisers data of the customer on the multiple levels. Bottom line, Valpak will be able to show both the advertiser and individuals receiving the coupons that they really get them!