This week in social media news, Instagram is testing the ability to share its user’s location with Facebook and the fake news ecosystem that was alive and well during the 2016 election is still… alive and well. Also, LinkedIn aims to improve the quality of clicks on sponsored content and Instagram goes down in the wee hours of the morning
Instagram Testing Location-Sharing
Instagram is currently testing the ability to share users’ location with Facebook.
Why it matters: Facebook continues to weather the storm of a rough couple of weeks. First, the founders of IG leave then a data breach on Facebook, then Instagram goes down earlier this week and now an app researcher has found in-app code that shows Instagram is testing the ability to share users’ location with Facebook.
Details: According to code found by app researcher Jane Manchun Wong, Instagram is testing an opt-in feature that would share your exact location with Facebook, even with you’re not actively using the app. Wong noted this would help Facebook serve more relevant ads, and perhaps better recommend places to users.
Fake News Ecosystem Still Active On Twitter, Study Finds
The Knight Foundation released a new study that found that the “fake news” ecosystem prevalent during the 2016 election is still active on Twitter.
Why it matters: For the last two years Facebook and Twitter have made some small but well-publicized steps in combating fake news. But, according the Knight Foundation report, “more than 80 percent of accounts that repeatedly spread misinformation during the 2016 election campaign are still active, and they continue to publish more than a million tweets on a typical day.”
Details: The Knight Foundation report is split into seven sections. Each detailing how the fake news ecosystem existed during the election and how it continues to flourish. Some of the highlights include:
- “Twitter has claimed repeatedly that it has cracked down on automated accounts that spread fake news and engage in “spammy behavior.” Yet of the 100 accounts that were most active in spreading fake news in the months before the election—the large majority clearly engaged in “spammy behavior” that violates Twitter’s rules— more than 90 were still active as of spring 2018.”
- “Contrary to claims that fake news is a game of “whack-a-mole,” more than 80 percent of the disinformation accounts in our election maps are still active as this report goes to press.”
LinkedIn Aims To Improve Sponsored Content Click Quality
In the months ahead LinkedIn will be testing and adding features to improve the quality of clicks for sponsored content.
Why it matters: Users may see a bit of a drop in the amount of clicks, but according to LinkedIn the quality will now improve.
Details: The one example Linkedin mentions is that the ‘show more’ linked will now unfurl rather than register as a click. We’ll have to wait and see what else the platform plans on rolling out.
Instagram experienced a worldwide outage in the early morning on Wednesday.
Why it matters: Just a week after the founders of Instagram departed the company, days after a major security breach at Facebook and shortly after Facebook named a new head of Instagram, the image-sharing app went down for the count for about an hour.Will people try to connect the dots? Probably. Are these related? Probably not.
Details: As the Instagram outage took hold in the early morning hours of Wednesday, the #instagramdown hashtag took over on Twitter. Not Instagram nor Facebook have released a statement about the outage.
— Maple🎃 (@l0iss0a) October 3, 2018
Pinterest’s More Ideas Tab
Pinterest introduce the ‘More Ideas’ tab today, available for all users.
Why it matters: Pinterest launched new tools for organization a year ago, this seems very much a continuation of that. The release coincides with the beginning of October, Halloween craft-making season and Pinterest’s Halloween report.
Details: With the More Ideas tab, Pinterest suggests new ideas based no your old saved ones. Users will also see suggestions for new sections to help organize the ideas they’ve saved.
Is Brain-To-Brain The Future Of Social Media?
Why it matters: Scientists are still years out from being able to communicate brain-to-brain through electrodes, but the implications of this kind of technology are terrifying and amazing.
Details: Researchers from the University of Washington announced in late September they had created “the first multi-person non-invasive direct brain-to-brain interface for collaborative problem solving.” They call it BrainNet and it involves electrode-filled caps placed over people’s heads. Using the the interface, the group created a “tetris-like” game of falling blocks wherein five groups of three players had an overall accuracy of 81 percent—using their brains. The abstract published by the group goes a bit into the push for brain-to-brain communication but strays from speaking towards many of the implications.
Facebook Adds Tools To Combat Bullying
Facebook is adding tools across the platform to address bullying.
Why it matters: This is part of an ongoing push by Facebook to make users feel more comfortable in their experience on the platform. Facebook will also be adding more tools aimed at protecting public figures on Facebook.
Details: Facebook is rolling out multiple new tools to combat bullying. Along with being able to report multiple comments at once come the ability to delete comments on your own post as well as report comments on behalf of other users. Facebook is also testing ways to block specific words.
In terms of public figures, Facebook stated that, “In the coming weeks, we will further expand our policies to better protect public figures against harassment regardless of age. For example, severe attacks that directly engage a public figure will not be allowed under the new policy.”
Instagram Gets New CEO
Facebook has appointed Adam Mosseri as Instagram’s new CEO, this comes after Instagram’s founders left the company last week.
Why it matters: Facebook has a pretty bad time in the last seven days—with the news of Instagram’s founders leaving the company being only the second-worst headline of the week. The appointment of a new CEO was surely decided quickly after the departures, but this no doubt helps add some stability to Facebook in the eyes of the public.
Details: Adam Mosseri, a longtime executive at Facebook, has been named the CEO at Instagram. He replaces the founders of Instagram, Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger, in this role. This appointment comes as many speculate that Facebook will look to integrate Instagram more “tightly” into the Facebook ecosystem.
Pinterest’s Ad Revenue Forecast
Emarketer has released an ad revenue Forecast for Pinterest and the results are glowing.
Why it matters: Long thought of as “your mother’s social media platform,” Pinterest has not only exceeded expectations as they emphasize advertising and visual search, but it seems they will only be doing better in the future.
Details: Emarketer‘s ad revenue forecast for Pinterest show the expectation that the social media platform will cross the $500 million in US ad revenue by end of year. Furthermore, they expect Pinterest to pass the $1 billion revenue mark by 2020.
Monica Peart, senior forecasting director at eMarketer stated that, “audience expansion will help Pinterest reach regular monthly use in a quarter of the US population by 2020, a level reached by Snapchat and Instagram back in 2018 and 2017, respectively.”
Editor’s Note: Our weekly social media news post is updated daily. This installment will be updated until Friday, October 5. Have a news tip? We’re looking for changes to and news surrounding social media platforms as they relate to marketing. Let us know at email@example.com.