In it’s 2012 Q4 results, Facebook made $1.59 billion (£1.06 billion) in revenue, or roughly $0.17 per share. This exceeded Wall Street’s estimates of $1.53 billion (£968 million), or $0.15 per share. Facebook’s Q4 results are up from their Q3 efforts, where they made $1.13 billion in revenue, and a loss of $59 million.
TechCrunch notes that 23% of Facebook’s revenue, roughly $305 million, comes from mobile, an area that Facebook was having difficulty in monetizing. Facebook made $1.09 billion from advertising and $170 million from payments, mostly from games. Facebook also increased the Revenue Per User (RPU) to $1.54 globally, up from $1.38.
Facebook has also announced that they now have more mobile users than desktop, a major milestone in the history of the social network. Facebook also announced that they now have 1.06 billion monthly active users, an increase of 25% year-over-year. Daily active users increased 28% yoy to reach 618 million. Mobile monthly users increased 57% yoy to 680 million.
Facebook spent $1.06 billion, an increase of 82%. Share-based compensation, payroll tax expenses and non-GAAP expenses were up 67% to $849 million.
Facebook now has $9.63 billion in cash and marketable securities.
Facebook’s stock has declined 4% in after-hours trading despite beating Wall Street estimates.
After the riots of August 2011 in London and many other cities in Britain, the prevalence of social networking in organising crime became apparent. Whilst many network providers such as O2 pledged to provide any information required by police to carry out any investigations, social networking giant Twitter has always remained very reticent to reveal users’ identities.
Despite many widely-publicised cases of ‘trolling’ and related forms of Internet vandalism, Twitter only provided information to law enforcement agencies once in the second half of 2012, compared to the 25 request it received from British authorities.
In the United States, the country in which Twitter is based, authorities requested information on 815 occasions and those requests were complied with 562 times (at the time of writing).
So why is Twitter so intentionally cagey about handing over information in Britain?
Well, spokespersons from Twitter UK claim that the requests it received were ‘overly broad’, or ones that did not relate directly to the activity of a single account. For example, authorities may investigate a single Twitter user by attempting to collect information about other users with which the user may communicate.
Facebook, however, after dealing with years of privacy disagreements with lawmakers, have staff in Ireland dedicated to working with British police. Twitter however maintains that the methods investigations from the UK use to obtain information take advantage of ‘international treaty arrangements’.
Additionally, unlike Facebook, Twitter has a policy of informing users if they are under investigation, which in the UK (in some cases) can be a breach of legal proceedings.
By nature, Twitter receives less requests than other social networking platforms, due to the public nature of most users’ activities. It is only once an account holder makes a conscious decision to remove information that investigators may send a request, if necessary.
Whilst the importance of privacy on the Internet has never been higher, Twitter should co-operate fully with British law, especially considering the minimal corporation tax it begrudgingly pays in the UK.
There is trouble stirring in the Conservative party, and amongst their supporters. Head over to The Telegraph‘s comment sections about the EU and the most recommended comment will usually end with “Vote for UKIP!” or something of a similar message. This change has come about only recently, with many feeling that the EU is no longer what Britain needs. Because you cannot drive to mainland Europe from the UK, some feel that we are not part of Europe so should not be part of the EU. Right-wing blogs such as Guido Fawkes are incredibly anti-EU, as are papers such as the Daily Express (which has run laughable “crusades” to remove the UK from the EU) and the Daily Mail. I do not dispute that some of the things the EU tries to implement are ridiculous, like wanting control of the British press. When I read that story I groaned, how could the EU be so stupid? They must know that there is diminishing support for them in the UK and they go and insult those who write about them. Even papers like The Guardian, who are pro-EU, are anti-Leverson. The decision for Brussels to attack David Cameron over a popular decision, especially amongst the press, is beyond stupid.
On this particular issue, David Cameron had to be very careful. The right-wing media (both blogs, like Guido, and print newspapers and magazines, like The Spectator and The Telegraph) are strongly opposed to the EU and would dish out negative coverage if Cameron appeared too weak on the issue (most have already moved over to supporting UKIP). Luckily, David Cameron had a brainwave: schedule the In/Out referendum for after the 2015 election. Genius!
The timing of the referendum is excellent for several reasons:
- It is highly unlikely that the Conservatives will get back into power in 2015. Because of the cuts that have had to have been made (no matter how essential), people do not like the Tories anymore. George Osborne is seen by many as inactive on cutting back the deficit, with some new figures supporting their claims. Granted, UK voters don’t like quick changes of government (Labour was in power for 13 years, with the Tories going for considerably longer before them) but they may make an exception for 2015. A Guardian/ICM poll suggests that the Conservative sit with just 33% of the vote, while Labour has 38%. Another poll, published by Guido Fawkes, shows 38% are voting for Labour, 27% for the Tories and 17% for UKIP. Because the Tories are unlikely to be reëlected in 2015, the 2017 referendum will never happen. In this morning’s Daily Mail, Cameron was praised for his stance on the EU.
- The supposed referendum — see point one – whips the carpet out from under the feet of UKIP. What is the point of UKIP? To get the UK out of the EU. David Cameron has now negated the main reason UKIP exists. If the Tories will offer a referendum, and have better politics on other issues and are more likely to get in, what is the point of voting for UKIP? None. Some have suggested that UKIP are stealing Conservative voters and a “pact” should be reached. After Cameron’s referendum plan, that will stop. UKIP’s leader, Nigel Farage, “ridiculed” Cameron, but that is just bluster; Farage knows his party will fade back into irrelevance come 2015.
- In point one I focussed on the media, specifically the right-wing variant, giving Cameron stick for not offering a referendum. The other people who were giving Cameron stick were those on his own benches. Ed Miliband suggested that Cameron was “scared” of his back benchers. This may be true, but he has just gone a long way to pleasing them. There was some suggestion that some Tory MPs would defect to UKIP, but why would they do that now? They can stay with a party that represents their views (or isn’t adverse to them) and not have to face losing their seats in 2015. And Cameron’s ruse worked: he won back his Eurosceptic back benchers.
- Cameron has also pleased some business owners by not appearing too anti-EU. Trade within the EU is essential to the British economy, especially when we’re in the midst of a triple-dip recession. Countries such as Germany have already warned Britain that they will be displeased if the UK leaves the EU. Angela Merkel, German Chancellor, said Germany will “compromise” with the UK to keep them in the EU.
David Cameron’s EU referendum is genius, for many reasons. He has managed to please both the media (left and right), his back benchers and business owners. This wouldn’t normally happen, but I commend you for your political cunning, Mr. Cameron.
Reports are in that a shooter is at large in Lone Star College in Houston, Texas.
Gunfire was reportedly heard on the campus of Lone Star College in the north of Houston. A spokesman for the college, said students had been warned to take shelter.
There are unconfirmed reports of two people injured. News helicopter footage showed ambulances at the scene and police swarming over the campus.
Local officials told local KTRK that two victims had suffered gunshot wounds. Students told the television station that they had heard shots near the cafeteria.
More news in as it breaks.