This week in social media news, Instagram thrives in Japan, Twitter battles trolls and Facebook lets users reminisce over old Stories.
Instagram: Sushi, Sharing And Surveys
Japanese Instagram users cited feeling a growing “sense of belonging” in the community, according to study findings released on Thursday. A 2017 Kantar study commissioned by Facebook IQ found that a majority of respondents check Instagram right before bed. The most popular topics are Fashion and Photography, both at 27 percent.
Users in the region are open to advertising on the platform, Kantar found, stating that some of the interviewed respondents don’t regard an ad as an ad. In addition, 33 percent said Instagram is a suitable advertising medium for any brand and not just those in high-end categories.
Instagram announced the ability to share feed posts inside a Story—even if that post originated from someone else. The new option allows users to insert another Instagram post like a sticker and will automatically credit the original poster. Users can opt out of having their posts shared by others in the settings and the option is only available for public accounts. Feed post sharing is now available for Android devices and will roll out for iOS in the coming days.
Instagram introduced the Emoji Slider, a new way to interact with users by creating polls inside Stories. Users can pose a question to their followers such as “How much do you love pizza?” Users can type any question they like and choose an emoji, which appears on an interactive slider. The emoji animates as users slide it left or right on the scale.
“By choosing an emoji for your question, you also add a layer of emotional context that helps those answering understand your tone and answer accordingly,” Instagram said in the announcement.
Twitter: Don’t Feed The Trolls
On Wednesday, Twitter announced its “new approach” to battle abuse on the platform, integrating new behavioral signals into its algorithm update. The idea is that accounts exhibiting suspicious behavior or those which have been reported multiple times for abuse will show up less often in Twitter’s timeline.
“Less than one percent of accounts make up the majority of accounts reported for abuse, but a lot of what’s reported does not violate our rules,” wrote Twitter’s director of product management and health David Gasca. “While still a small overall number, these accounts have a disproportionately large—and negative—impact on people’s experience on Twitter.”
Since not all “trolls” or negative comments technically violate Twitter’s rules, the algorithm update targets accounts that do not contribute to the “healthy conversation.” Gasca did not provide examples of what they constitute as healthy.
Early tests saw a four percent drop in abuse reports from Twitter search results and eight percent fewer reports from conversations.
In other news, Twitter has announced that its legacy API services will retire on August 16. Its new Account Activity API is now available to developers.
Facebook: Stories And Soundbytes
Like Instagram—and Snapchat from whence the feature originated—Facebook Stories disappear after 24 hours, but users in India can now archive them for viewing and posting later. Indian users are the first to try the platform’s new Stories update that rolled out on Wednesday. Facebook will let users privately save their clips from the Facebook Camera directly to the social network instead of their phone in case they don’t have enough space.
For a country like India, with 22 official languages, not having a custom keyboard can make posting a challenge. Facebook Stories will now offer audio recordings that play against a custom background. The feature could also be useful for those who are known for their voice, such as podcasters and voice actors.