You Can Now See How Much Time You Spend on Facebook and Instagram

iStock
iStock

"Digital well-being" is a buzz phrase getting more play in recent months, as the tech field continues rolling out responses to cautions about excessive use of social media. In addition to staring at screens before bed potentially affecting sleep, poring over your friends' Facebook feeds might be making you depressed, while constantly updating your own profile might indicate you're a narcissist.

Now, Facebook is introducing a new feature that might help curb some of that over-indulgence, as TechCrunch reports. The company recently announced that it's implemented a way for users to monitor their daily usage in minutes. Labeled "Your Time on Facebook" on Facebook and "Your Activity" on Instagram, the function informs you of how much time you've spent enjoying cat videos. (And presumably, how much less time you've spent with your actual cat.) If you activate "Set Daily Reminder," the software will notify you when you've exceeded whatever allotted time you've set for yourself browsing the site. You can also mute notifications for a set time in order to minimize disruptions.

As TechCrunch writer Josh Constine points out, there are some drawbacks. The new feature doesn't tell you how much of your time is spent actively participating in social media—posting, liking, and interacting—and how much is spent passively scrolling content, or what some have dubbed "passive zombie feed scrolling." It's also not a prominent feature; users have to go to "Settings" and then "Your Time on Facebook" to configure the option and evaluate their data.

Obviously, neither Facebook nor Instagram will cut you off once you've reached your self-imposed limit. You'll have to do that yourself.

Wondering how you stack up compared to the rest of the population? In 2016, Facebook said that their average user is logged in to Facebook, Instagram, and Messenger for roughly 50 minutes a day.

[h/t TechCrunch]

Queen's 'Bohemian Rhapsody' Is Officially the Most Streamed Song of the 20th Century

Keystone/Getty Images
Keystone/Getty Images

Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody" was a massive hit when it was released in 1975. After spending nine weeks at the top of the UK charts (it only broke the top 10 on the U.S. charts), it went on to become the third bestselling UK single of all time. Even as the way people listen to music has changed, the mock opera's popularity hasn't wavered. Now, "Bohemian Rhapsody" is officially the most streamed song recorded in the 20th century, Entertainment Weekly reports.

Queen's song has been streamed by listeners a staggering 1.5 billion times, putting it ahead of classic rock tracks like "Smells Like Teen Spirit" by Nirvana and "Sweet Child O' Mine" by Guns N' Roses. But when looking at overall streaming numbers, contemporary tracks still dominate. Combined, the original version of "Despacito" and the remix garnered 4.6 billion plays in just six months last year.

This latest milestone for "Bohemian Rhapsody" is even more satisfying when you know the song's backstory. The long play time and unconventional, operatic style made some music industry insiders—including the band's manager and Elton John—skeptical of its marketability. When the song debuted on the radio, listeners calling in to demand more quickly proved them wrong.

The track likely got a boost in popularity recently with help from the Freddie Mercury biopic that shares its name. Bohemian Rhapsody, starring Rami Malek, hit theaters in early November and is now officially the second-highest grossing musical biopic of all time, just behind 2015's Straight Outta Compton. But it's not the first time a hit movie has led to renewed interest in the song: the tune saw a similar spike in sales—and it reentered the charts and hit No. 2—when it played an integral part in the hit 1992 comedy Wayne's World.

[h/t Entertainment Weekly]

The Pigzbe Wallet Teaches Kids How to Budget and Save Money

Pigzbe
Pigzbe

Fiscal responsibility isn’t the most exciting topic in the world, especially when you’re in elementary school. But, as Fast Company reports, Primo Toys is hoping to make the concept more child-friendly. The company’s new Pigzbe wallet works like a digital piggy bank to teach kids age 6 and older how to earn, budget, and save money by managing the cryptocurrency they receive from their parents.

Pigzbe connects to a smartphone app, which parents can use to set chores and tasks for their kids to complete, such as making their bed or washing the dishes. They can set a schedule for these chores (every Tuesday, for example) as well as monetary rewards in the form of Wollo, a “family-friendly” cryptocurrency developed by Primo Toys.

Tasks will be sent directly to the Pigzbe device, and once they have been completed, kids will receive their hard-earned Wollo tokens. The Pigzbe app helps kids visualize their earnings and how much they’ll need to save to get the items they want. "It’s a design that feels childlike, sure, but in a fun, self-aware way, almost like a Tamagotchi," Fast Company notes.

Although Wollo isn’t technically “real money,” the tokens can be used to purchase toys and other items from Pigzbe’s app. Parents can also order a specialized Visa card that will let them buy items using Wollo. Other family members can also send gifts and allowances to any Pigzbe user, no matter their geographic location.

The goal is to teach kids about financial responsibility at an early age, when they’re just beginning to form habits that will stick with them well into adulthood. “We believe that financially curious children become financially literate adults, and we designed Pigzbe to achieve just that,” Primo Toys, the maker of the Pigzbe wallet, writes in its Kickstarter campaign. The product has already exceeded its $50,000 fundraising goal, with more than 550 backers on board.

Backers who pledge $79 or more before the campaign ends on January 25, 2019 will receive the Pigzbe wallet at a 40 percent discount.

[h/t Fast Company]

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