Facebook Verified Accounts, Spotify Discover and Gmail Update | This Week in Social Media

Facebook introduces verified accounts

Following Twitter’s lead, Facebook began rolling out verified accounts this Wednesday to “public figures with large audiences”—namely celebrities, government officials, popular brands, and well-known journalists. Verification places a small, blue-and-white checkmark (nearly identical to Twitter’s verification mark) next to the account name, both in search and on the profile itself—making it easier for users to interact with their favorite brands and celebrities by distinguishing official profiles from fan pages. Target, Oreo, and President Obama were among the first accounts to be verified.

Spotify launches discover feature

On Wednesday, Spotify released a new feature called “Discover” to help users find new music, learn more about the artists they enjoy and see where and when those artists may be performing in cities near you. Users can already follow artists, brands (like Rolling Stone and Esquire) and playlists, but the Discover feature delivers personalized recommendations to help broaden the user experience, linking users to new artists or trendsetters with popular playlists. For now, the Discover feature is only available through the web player—but anything that helps us find artists more like DMX is music to our ears.

Gmail update adds tabbed categories

Good news! You don’t have to sift through countless e-mails to find that Groupon for Prancercise (click here for one of the strangest things we’ve seen on the web in a while)! Google has introduced a new system for Gmail this week allowing users to categorize and instantly organize messages.

According to Wired, Google now lets you sort e-mails into five categories: Primary, Social, Promotions, Updates, and Forums. “Primary” is likely most of what you are actually interested in reading: messages from friends, coworkers and family. “Social” lumps together your Twitter, Facebook and social network notification e-mails. “Promotions,” lays out deals from organizations like Groupon and Living Social. The “Updates” tab gathers receipts, online statements, and bills. The “Forums” tab houses emails from any forums or listservs you belong to.

You can choose which of the five tabs you want displayed but, right now, custom tabs are not permitted. The redesign will roll out over the next few weeks.