There’s an app for that — this week’s staff picks

Happy Friday! Here are the most interesting tech stories we read this week.

You can now call your elected officials through Facebook (Read by Alexandria H.)

It’s been said that phone calls to government officials are more effective than emails or tweets. Whoever said that didn’t need to tell Facebook twice. The social network now offers a way for users to call their local elected officials right from within the app. The new tool, called Town Hall, enables you to find your local, state, and federal representatives and contact them directly by phone, email, or of course a Facebook message. Often, knowing who those officials are or how to contact them is where people get stumped. I think Facebook is right on the money with this one. Town Hall is a seamless way to get people involved and keep them informed on the issues that affect them.

You may soon be able to track your seafood in real time to fight fish fraud (Read by Heidi B.)

If you’re a seafood lover, you may be appalled to know that one in five pieces of fish is mislabeled, meaning that the beautiful piece of salmon you’re eating may not be salmon at all. Talk about fishy. To combat widespread fraud in the seafood industry, Dock to Dish is creating a system that uses barcoded bags to track fish as they travel from sea to restaurant. Customers even have access to a dashboard where they can chat with local fishermen. I’m a firm believer that you should know exactly what you’re eating, so I’m all for this initiative!

Scheduled is a new app that lets you schedule your text messages (Read by Camillia S.)

Sometimes life happens and you forget to send that “Happy birthday!” text even though you made a mental note days prior. Luckily, there’s an app for that. Scheduled is an app that allows you to draft messages in advance and then choose a time for them to be sent out. It sounds a little like Hootsuite, but for messaging, and instead of automatically sending a message, Scheduled sends you a pop-up reminding you to send it yourself. The app looks sleek and user-friendly and allows you to queue up to four messages in the free version. Any more than that and you’ll be out 99 cents. If you’re someone who can’t remember to do things the day of and rely heavily on reminders, this app just may be worth a buck.

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