Read the vocabulary and then read and listen to the article.
stock: the value or the shares of a company (The Dow Jones stock exchange is on Wall Street in New York)
IPO: Initial Public Offering – when a company offers the public the opportunity to buy shares in that company.
to shore up: to support or assist something
to withhold: to not use, offer or give something e.g. help or money
rebound: recover in value or strength
mistakenly: to do something by mistake
to fuel: to create a ore intense effect
concern: a cause of worry or anxiety
shift: move or change of direction
threshold: a level or position where things change or become different
You can read the article here.
Listen to the article:
Look at the vocabulary before you start!
user: a person who uses a service
to upload: to send a document from your computer to an internet server (the opposite of download)
to post: to make a comment on a blog or social media website
revenue: the money that that a company makes from selling its products
billion: a thousand million (not a million million)
quarter: a period of three months (financial)
to host: to store data on a computer connected to the internet
15 interesting facts and figures about Facebook
- Facebook has 901 million active monthly users (up from 680 million a year ago).
- One in 7.7 people in the world have a Facebook account.
- Daily active users total 526 million (up from 372 million last year).
- Monthly mobile users now total 488 million.
- 300 million photos are uploaded to the site each day.
- 3.2 billion Likes and Comments are posted daily.
- Facebook hosts 125 billion friendships.
- Revenue for the first quarter of 2012 was $1.058 billion, up from $731 million last year.
- Facebook paid Instagram the equivalent of $1.01 billion for its business.
- Facebook hosts 42 million “Pages” with 10 or more likes.
- There are currently 9 million Facebook “apps”.
- Facebook has registered 774 patents in the USA.
- Facebook bought an additional 650 patents from Microsoft for $550 million.
- Zynga the online games company (which includes Farmville) contributes 15% of Facebook revenue.
- Facebook currently has 3,539 full-time employees.
a) Look at the photo on the cover of this week’s Weekly English Practice and then answer the following questions.
- Has internet changed your life much? A lot? Not at all?
- What do these words mean?
facts, likely, available, search engine, externalise, outsource, knowledge, convenient, labourious, keep in touch, babble, hardly ever, how on earth
b) Listen to the audio and/or read the text.
c) Discuss this question. Write your opinions on our Facebook page. What devices do you use to access the internet?
How has the internet changed us?
According to Betsy Sparrow, people are gradually forgetting how to remember facts. Instead we are learning to remember how to find the fact. In experiments at Columbia University, the psychologist showed how people are less likely to remember information if they know that they can consult the internet about it again at a later date.
This is synonymous of living in a permanently connected world where information is instantly available to anyone who knows where to look for it. Why remember things when you can simply use an internet search engine to get the information when it’s necessary? We are in a process of externalising our memory, we have begun to outsource our knowledge. If the internet has changed our way of remembering things, what else has it changed? Here are some possibilities:
Ambient intimacy – Communication has become so convenient now that it has become part of the atmosphere around us. We keep in touch with our friends, family and co-workers on a level of regularity and intimacy that was previously too labourious. Think about how people send tweets, update their Facebook status and comment on friends’ photos and videos while on the bus or train.
Knowledge was power – When Thomas Hobbes wrote the phrase ‘knowledge is power’ in 1658 he referred to keeping power by preventing others from getting access to it. Nowadays, professional photographers are worried about competition from talented amateurs with digital cameras who have studied techniques on-line in their free time. News organisations must decide to compete or collaborate with bloggers and tweeters to get to the breaking news first. Knowledge is not as protected as before, and that includes knowing what you eat for breakfast…
If it’s free, you are the customer – First it was your supermarket points card, now it’s your email and social network babble. New companies have given us access to the amazing interconnected world of the internet, and we hardly ever pay for these services. How on earth do they make money then? Their business is to collect information and sell it to those who are interested in selling to us. Our personal information has become public domain too. The internet has transformed us into Homo Info Publicus.
This article has been adapted from the enriched ebook ‘iLook iThink iSpeak – English Practice – vol 1 by Zapa iBooks. To discover what enriched ebooks are and how they work on iPads, download the free edition of ’iLook iThink iSpeak – English Practice’ here.
Use Facebook to practice English!
Here are some sites we recommend:
And one from Vitoria-Gasteiz: http://www.facebook.com/Academia.Ingles.Vitoria?fref=ts
The London Eye
It took seven years and the skills of hundreds of people from five countries to make the London Eye a reality.
Each of the 32 capsules weighs 10 tonnes. That’s the same weight as 1,052,631 pound coins!
The height of the London Eye is 135m (equivalent to 64 red telephone boxes piled on top of each other)
The London Eye carries 3.5 million customers every year. You would need 6,680 Boeing 747 jumbo jets to fly that many people.
It can carry 800 passengers per revolution – that’s 11 London red double-decker buses