3 Social Media Updates You Might’ve Missed Over the Holidays

By Mike Mitchell

Welcome to 2014, everyone! As you emerge from the haze of your holiday revelry -- where halls were decked, balls were dropped, and chit-chat with your aunt was forced -- we’re here to help you get up to speed.

You missed some stuff. But we kept our stethoscope on the heartbeat of social media. Here’s what happened over the holiday break…

Snapchat leaked your number. Maybe not yours in particular, but Snapchat did get hacked on New Year’s Eve to the tune of 4.6 million usernames and phone numbers. The hackers claimed to publish the info to coerce Snapchat into patching holes in its security.

Yesterday, Snapchat published a statement on its blog confirming no images or videos were leaked.

To find out if your account was affected, go here.

Vine has vanity URLs now. As of December 23, any Vine account older than 30 days and with more than two posts can register for a personalized URL, in the format of “vine.co/[your URL]”. This will make it easier for Vine users to share their profiles.

And if you have a vanity URL for your Twitter profile and want your Vine URL to match, you get first dibs -- just register here to confirm it.

Twitter Alerts was updated. Twitter Alerts, which lets organizations send push notifications from their Twitter accounts to their followers during an emergency, is now more user-accessible. On your iOS or Android app, simply go to a participating organization’s profile and tap on the bell icon -- there, you’ve just subscribed to their push-notification Alerts.

Also, Alerts will now appear at the bottom of iOS users’ screens as an orange bar of text. Hopefully Android will get this feature in the near future.

Flood warnings, public shootings, and missing child alerts are some examples of types of Twitter Alerts. Participants include FEMA, the Department of State, the Department of Homeland Security, and the Red Cross. Here’s a snapshot of one:

Those are the major social media updates from the end of December. May you go forth, intrepid reader, into the unknown wilderness of 2014, fortified by the knowledge of these recent events.

Together, let us resolve to make this the Year of Being On Top of Our Game.