23 Million Twitter Accounts . . .

Just ran across this post from Engadget that

“Twitter’s now disclosed some specific numbers, noting that bot accounts total up to 8.5 percent of its active user count at the end of June. That’s roughly 23 million tweeters that aren’t human . . .”

It will be interesting to see how this grows/changes over the next year. Do you think people will start going to other platforms as they get sick of spam messages? How many spam tweets fill your account?

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Thinking of buying a pre-owned car? Well, we’ve got a cheat sheet for you.

Thinking about that next car? Maybe a pre-owned one?  Well, we’ve put together a guide with some help from an industry expert.  Check it out, it’s totally free.

Get Your Pre-Owned Car Buying Cheat Sheet

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Fake Passengers – The Battle Between Uber and Lyft and Our Solution


Uber Lyft Post.001

So, have you seen the news about the thousands of fake bookings on Uber and Lyft - approximately 18,000 it seems?  It’s crazy.  And while it may be a bit overblown, with several people responsible for the majority of these canceled rides, it got our wheels (pun intended) turning about how an Uber and/or Lyft driver could confirm who they’re picking up with REPP.

Here are our thoughts:

1) Uber or Lyft Drivers get a booking

2) They request the clients REPP Profile (by default they’ll get their verified ID information – so they can know that a) the person is real and b) their real name and info)

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3) The booking party can fulfill the request on their phone and shoot it back to the driver.

4) Voila, Uber and Lyft drivers now know who they’re booked with.

Just some quick musings- definitely let us know your feedback.

BTW – make sure that you follow our Terms when using REPP, including not using it for FCRA purposes.

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Our Newest Feature – REPP Email Alias (Email Smarter and Safer)

Do you love using the internet to make your life easier? 

Whether you buy or sell your stuff online, use peer-to-peer platforms, or meet new people online, you sometimes don’t want them having your real email until you feel more comfortable.  When those times come, you can use REPP’s Email Alias feature.

So What Is It?
It’s a quick way for you to communicate with a total stranger without them having your real email.

As a REPP User, we give you a unique, alias email.  So, for example if the email you created your REPP account with was John.Smith@Test.com, REPP auto-generates a unique email for you, which might look like 12345@repp.me.  You can then email anyone via your REPP Message window and the email will come from 12345@repp.me .  The recipient can respond to you and you’ll get notified in REPP and can go back and forth without ever revealing your real email.

How Can I Send A Message Using My REPP Alias Email?

 

Step by Step Guide

1) Click on your Messages Icon
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2) Click on “Compose”

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3)  Add the email address of who you want to email in the “To” Field

4) In the “From” field, you can choose what format you want your email to come from: a) the first one is your name with your email alias, b) the second one is “REPP User” with your email alias” and c) the third one is your real name with your real email.

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5) You can then include your “Subject” and a “Message”

6) OPTIONAL -  You can include your REPP Profile, if you want them to know more about you
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7) OPTIONAL - You can request their REPP Profile if you want to know more about them.

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8) Click “Send Message” and they’ll get an email in their inbox.  Here’s a sample of what a message would look like in their inbox.

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9) They can reply to this email and you’ll get it in your REPP inbox and notified via email that they’ve responded.

How Do I Find My REPP Alias Email Address?
In your REPP account,
1) Click on the Gear Icon

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2)  Navigate to the “My Information” Tab

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3) Scroll down and you’ll see your “Email Alias”
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What Can I Do With My Email Alias?
You can give it away to anybody that you don’t want to have your real email address, but you still want to communicate with them.  So for instance, if you meet somebody out at a bar and you want them to be able to communicate with you, but you’re not sure if you want to hand over your real email, then give ‘em your REPP Email Alias

How Do I Know When I Get A Message at my REPP Alias Email?
When someone sends a message to your REPP Alias Email address, either directly or in response to one of your messages, their message will come to your Messages Inbox AND we’ll notify you at the email address that has been verified for your REPP Account.

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10 Google Tools To Help Your Parents Finally Master the Internet

Young man teaching an elderly man computer skills

Starting to use the internet as a new user can be quite a daunting task which often leads to turning to others for help constantly.  Whether you are the one in need of help or you are tired of constantly being the go-to person for your parents or someone else’s online needs, this list will help get anyone started on the path to internet competence.  This quick list provides ten easy tools for new internet users to get started and become comfortable with being online and browsing the web.  While simple, these stepping stones for a new user will start a new user on the path to internet literacy through some very easy tools that Google provides to everyone.  So if you are an experienced user and know someone in need of some help, this article will attempt to help them along.

Install Google Chrome

If you have not made many changes to your computer, you likely do not have Google Chrome installed.  Chrome is a web browser which allows you to use the internet and is similar to Internet Explorer but is much easier to use.  To install Chrome, open your web browser and in the search bar type in “Google Chrome download” or follow this link.  Once you follow the instructions on screen, you will have a new icon on your desktop for you to access Chrome whenever you like.  For more help information on Chrome, head to Google’s FAQ page.

1. Create a Google Account

Now that you have successfully installed Google Chrome, you can use that as your new way to surf the web.  If you do not already have a Google account, you can get started very easily.  Open up Chrome and follow this link to Google’s create an account page.  Here you will put in your name and can create an email account.  If you already have an existing email that you would prefer to use, you can click the small blue text underneath it which says “I prefer to use my current email address.”  Once you finish filling out this page all you have to do is go to your email and open up your confirmation message and you are finished!

2. Google Calendar

With your Google account created, you can now start using all of the great tools that Google has to offer.  One such tool is Google Calendar.  This tool allows you to create your own online calendar and share it with friends and family so you can stay connected.  If you have a smartphone, you can easily sync your calendar onto it so you can take it and update it wherever you go.  When you go to the Google homepage, you will see a set of 9 small squares in the top right corner.  This button allows you to access many of the great tools that Google has to offer.  If you click it a number of Google tools will appear.

Google Apps button

The circled icon is your go to button for many Google applications

For now, we will simply start with Google Calendar.  Start by clicking the Calendar button or following this link and you will be taken to the Calendar page.  Since this will be your first time using Google Calendar, you will have a welcome box come up to tell you all about what it can do.  Here you can begin to set up your calendar and it can even remind you about upcoming events that you have.  All you have to do to use Calendar is to left click and drag your mouse down whatever time slot you want to create an event.  You can also email calendar events by clicking the share button in the top right of the page.  As mentioned above, this can be great for everything from syncing up your calendar with a relative’s to keep track of what is going on with your family to setting up lunch or coffee dates with a friend or colleague.  It is even possible to invite people to events as well as get email reminders when something is coming up.  For more help Google has a help center that can answer more questions.

Google Calendar Screenshot

Example of a partially filled calendar

3. Google Maps

Another tool that Google provides any user is its Google Maps function.  To access Google Maps, click on the icon with 9 squares as before and click the Maps icon or by following this link.  When you open up the Google Maps page, you will be greeted with a giant map as well as a search bar in the top left of the screen.  You can search any address you desire and it will zoom in the map to wherever the address is.  If you want directions once you type in your destination, all you have to do is click directions button that appears once you search for your location.  Once you set your starting location, you will be given at least one way, if not more, to get to your destination.  If you want to see the turn by turn directions listed, all you have to do is click “List all steps” and click on any of the directions for it to zoom into the map where it is relevant.  If you have any difficulty with Google Maps and need more help, Google has their own help center for this to answer your questions.

4. Zooming in and Shortcuts

Sometimes reading things on the internet for extended periods of time can be tiring on the eyes or perhaps you need the text on a website to be bigger and easier to read.  Well have no fear as Chrome has you covered.  An easy way to make a page bigger without worrying about using the mouse is by pressing the “Ctrl” button and the “+” button on your keyboard at the same time.  If you zoom in too far, you can zoom out by pressing the “Ctrl” button and the “-” button at any time.  You can even press the “Ctrl” button on your keyboard and use the wheel on your mouse to make the screen bigger by rolling the wheel forward or backward depending on if you want it bigger or smaller.  A way to do this without the keyboard is also quite simple.  All you have to do is click the three lines that are at the top right of your Chrome browser and press the plus or minus sign next to where it says zoom.  A full list of all the shortcuts that you can use are available here for Windows computers and here for Macs.

Google Settings bar

The red square indicates the symbol to click on in the top-right of your browser

5. Google News

Now most likely you have your favorite news source to keep up to date on what is going on in the world, but Google offers their own news outlet for you to browse recent news stories gathered from a number of different websites.  They don’t write any of the articles themselves but rather collect them for you to easily view.  It allows you to personalize the news stories that you would like to receive and offers a slider bar to show how much of one type of news over another you would like to see.  To access Google News, all you have to do is click on click the News icon similar to Maps and Calendar or by heading directly to the site here.  If you want to customize what type of news you see, click the gear in the top right of the news page and adjust the slider bars to your tastes.  You can even customize what news sources you are more likely to hear from so you can choose from just one or two sources or as many as you are interested in.  If you need any more help setting up your Google News feed, Google’s News Help Center will provide answers to your questions.

6. Google Shopping

As more and more people are online, so too are these people using online stores like Amazon to buy things they would have otherwise in stores.  However, with numerous different online stores on the web, finding the best deal or website may seem difficult.  Google has tried to come up with a solution for this in the form of Google Shopping.  To access Google Shopping, go back to the tool page where you found Maps, News, and Calendar and click on the “More” option to see the Shopping icon or by heading directly to their shopping page here.  This will take you to Google’s search engine for finding consumer products online.  Search whatever it is you want to find and Google will list numerous different websites offering that item and their prices.  This could also introduce you to other websites and better deals than you would have otherwise missed.

7. Google Books

Even with how great everything on the internet is and the products Google has to offer, it still feels good to curl up with a good book at the end of the day.  Google wants to help you with this through their Google Books search section.  To access this way to search for books, you can either simply head to their Google Books site to start adding books to a virtual bookshelf or search for something like normal through Google then click “Books” above your search results to find results for books by that name.  You can tag books that you are currently reading, add books to a wish list, review books, or search for books to buy from various online stores like Amazon and Barnes & Noble.  Eventually you can even have books suggested to you based on your reading habits and search history.

8. Chrome Remote Desktop

Now that some of the more basic tools are out of the way, it is time for something a little different.  While Google has all of these wonderful products for use, other people can release add-ons to Chrome called “extensions” and “apps” which allow you to do special things that you normally could not such as add more functions to a page or even make things easier to read.  You can browse the entire list of these extensions and add-ons here to find some for yourself to use.  Google has their own extension for Chrome called “Chrome Remote Desktop” which allows other computers to access your computer if you let them.  To put it simply, if you ever need computer help from your go to family member or friend but they are not physically around to help you, this handy add-on allows you to have them help you and use your computer over the internet.  To get Chrome Remote Desktop, follow this link and click the “+ Free” button in the top right of the window.  When a window pops up asking to add it, click add and you are all set!  To access this new tool whenever you want click the “Apps” button on the bar below the search bar and click the “Chrome Remote Desktop” button.

 Chrome Remote Desktop Screenshot

You will see a similar page when adding any extension or app

Since it is your first time using the application, you must authorize it to access your computer.  Press “Continue” on the window that pops up asking you to authorize and click on your Google account name and then click “Accept”.  Now that you have allowed Chrome Remote Desktop to access your computer, click on “Get Started” next to where it says “Remote Assistance” and then click the green “Share” button.  You will see a window pop up asking you to finish the installer before continuing which means that you have to install the program that allows this to work.  A small file will start downloading and when you see it done the bar on the bottom of your screen, click it and then hit run.  Once the window says that it is configuring Chrome Remote Desktop disappears, you are good to go and use this wonderful new program.

Whenever you want to use it, make sure that both you and the person who is helping you have Chrome Remote Desktop and whoever is in need of help clicks the green “Share” button.  An access code will be given to the one who presses the button which the helper needs to be given.  Once that is done then the helper will be able to access the shared screen and can solve whatever problem is from there.

9. Readability Extension

While this specific tool is not something made by Google, this app can come in handy if you want to read an article without any of the clutter that many websites have.  Readability allows you to simply read an article in a more comfortable way as well as save articles for later or even send them to your Kindle if you have one to read wherever you want.  To start using this tool, follow this link to their homepage to create your account.  Once you sign up, you can find the readability extension here and install it the same way as Chrome Remote Desktop by clicking the “+ Free” button.  Once you are done doing this, you can start using Readability right away by clicking on the new chair icon that has appeared on your top bar to read any article in a more comfortable way.

Readability Comparison

A CNN article next to the same article viewed with Readability for easier reading

10. Google Hangouts

Another great service that Google has to offer is something called “Google Hangouts”.  Hangouts allows you to connect with your Google contacts and talk to them over text or even video whenever you want.  If you have a smartphone or tablet you can also take advantage of this service to stay connected to those important to you.  To get started, simply follow this link for all of the information on all the different devices and ways you can use this tool.  You can even use this tool through your Gmail account by clicking on the small black icon (seen in a picture below) on the bottom left of your contact list.

 Hangouts icon

Google Hangout icon at the bottom of your Gmail page

This is something that is fantastic to take advantage of as it provides an alternative to simply calling family and friends assuming that you have your own webcam hooked up to your computer. To find webcams to take advantage of this service, you can simply use your Google Shopping page or any other online store such as Amazon to find more details.

Google Hangout

Example of a Google Hangout call

For help about any of these products listed or anything else Google related, follow this link to Google’s support center which will direct you to further explanations.  Did we miss anything in our list of tools to get people started using the computers and the internet?  Tweet us @MyREPP for anything you have found useful as well.

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You Won’t Believe What Was Inside

We thought it would be interesting (and entertaining) to see if hungry college students would eat a donut that was filled with a mystery food.  You’ve got to watch to see what happened.

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Hookers, Orgies, and Your Place . . . Oh My

Find out who your guest is

Want to make a couple extra bucks by doing something easy?

Hundreds of thousands have taken up that offer over the past year using Airbnb, hosting others at their place.  A few of those people have mistakenly allowed others to make a few easy bucks in another profession  . . .  prostitution.

The New York Post recently reported that “One escort service is even saving a bundle by renting Airbnb apartments instead of hotel rooms for clients’ quickies, says a 21-year-old call girl who works for the illicit business.”  Recently, Jessica Penzari, a New York publicist found a rude awakening.  “When she returned, Penzari was shocked to find telltale remnants including baby wipes and “at least 10 condoms.”

Not only are people renting places on Airbnb for prostitution, but they’re also hosting orgies at rented pads.

Just last month comedian Ari Teman walked in on an eye-opening scene. “Teman, 31, used the popular renting website Airbnb to lease his apartment for a couple of days to a man who claimed to be using the pad to host some wedding guests. But he got the shock of his life Friday night when he returned home to pick up some luggage in time to find building management shutting down a rowdy sex party featuring “Big Beautiful Women.”

While we hate the thought of people’s places being used for these illicit acts, and we know that Airbnb are working diligently to please the owners, we wanted to share some quick ways for Airbnb hosts/guest to have more transparency and confidence about one another by using REPP. 

Check them out and let us know your thoughts and stories.

REPP for Airbnb - See How

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Kenny’s Beautiful Mane

Here at REPP we like to keep our blog readers up to date with our product, services, and our team. With that said, we thought everyone would like to take one last look at Kenny’s beautiful mane before he cut it off.

Kenny- pre haircut from REPP on Vimeo.

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Add Your REPP to Spotlinks

Have you checked out Spotlinks yet?

Spotlinks is a smartphone app for iOS or Android which gathers together on its app any links that a user would like to exchange with other Spotlinks users.

TechCrunch

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Like other platforms where you share information about yourself with others, your REPP Profile can be plugged right in as a website.  Just copy and paste your public profile link and drop it in for “Add a Link”.

 

 

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Heading to SXSW? Check Out WhoAmIMeeting.com

Ahh, the birds are chirping, the sun is shining, and it’s time for everyone to flock to Austin for SXSW.  One of the great thinks about SXSW, besides the food, is meeting all types of people.  With that sentiment, the REPP team thought we’d have some fun and we created a new site – WhoAmIMeeting.com – a quick way to see if you’re coffee/beer/dinner meeting mate is legit.

Here’s how it works

1. Go to WhoAmIMeeting.com Screen Shot 2014-03-06 at 4.52.20 PM2. Type in your acquaintances   first and last name to see if they have a REPP Profile

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Search our database of verified REPP Profiles.

3. If your acquaintance has a profile, just click through to view their public REPP Profile and request to learn more about them (like they’re Twitter handle or their criminal background check)

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4. If they don’t seem to have a profile, you can invite them to get one

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5. Create your free REPP Account (we ask that you do this to make sure we don’t have spammers) and then just invite them with an email or via Facebook to create a REPP Profile

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Create your account in seconds to invite anyone to REPP

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You can invite anyone to REPP with just their email or through Facebook

6. They’ll get the invite and have the ability to let you know when it’s done

7. You can then request access to their REPP Profile so you can make sure they’re legit and they can do the same for you!

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