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Instagram rolls out ‘time well spent’ tools, Facebook sets off its own July 4th fireworks & more headlines from the week ending July 6, 2018

July 6, 2018

Welcome to Facebook Friday, your weekly recap of headlines, news and notes.

POLICY, PRIVACY & POLITICS

Feds expand probe into Facebook’s data sharing practices with Cambridge Analytica (Washington Post)

Representatives for the FBI, the SEC and the Federal Trade Commission have joined the Department of Justice in its inquiries about the two companies and the sharing of personal information of 71 million Americans. This is on the heels of Facebook recently releasing more than 700 pages of answers to lawmakers’ questions from the congressional hearings in April.

Walmart, P&G see their ads pulled under Facebook's new political labeling policy (Marketing Dive)

Just a week after new disclosures for every ad, Facebook hit its first speed bump. The social media company initially pulled ads from Walmart and Procter & Gamble because they contained political themes but did not include a "paid for by" label now mandated under the platform's policies. Walmart's ad discussed "bringing jobs back" to America, while P&G's was for LGBTQ pride and the marketer's "commitment to inclusion." Facebook later reversed its decisions.

NEW FUNCTIONALITY

Instagram rolls out tools for users to encourage ‘time well spent’ on the app (Social Media Today)

This week, Instagram announced that it's rolling out its new 'All Caught Up' notifications to all users, which will inform you of when you've seen all the new content posted by profiles you follow. Also, a ‘Do Not Disturb’ feature is in prototype. This will allow users to shut off notifications from the apps for 30 minutes, one hour, two hours, eight hours, one day or until they’re turned back on manually.

Facebook adds Stories archive, enabling re-use of Stories posts (Social Media Today)

Facebook is expanding the roll out an archive option for Facebook Stories, the same as what Instagram provided for Instagram Stories late last year. For brands, that could provide more motivation to invest additional time and effort into Stories content. While the initial impetus for Stories was to create immediate, disappearing content, it can be difficult to justify spending too much time on them, knowing that they'll be gone the next day.

NEWS YOU CAN USE

Facebook provides new tools to view all ads being run by pages (Social Media Today)

Not to be out-done by Twitter and its Ads Transparency Center launched this week, Facebook also released its ad transparency tool, providing new insight into the ads being run by any Page, at any given time. Two options now available:

  • View Active Ads – The first element enables you see all the ads that any Page is running across Facebook, Instagram and Messenger, as well as Facebook’s partner network.
  • More Page Information – The second component is Page information, which will enable users to view recent name changes, the date the Page was created, and more to come. This will be available on all Pages, even those that don’t advertise.

 From a marketer’s perspective, you’ll now be able to view all the ads being run by competitors and get a better understanding of how they’re looking to boost appeal to their Facebook audience.

OTHER HEADLINES

Facebook Is killing off three under-performing apps acquired in recent years (Fortune)

Due to low usage, tbh, a platform for providing positive feedback to friends, Hello, a service that helped Android users combine information from Facebook with their phone contacts data, and a fitness app called Moves were all dropped this week.

Bacardi tests Instagram's IGTV with fan-directed music video (Mobile Marketer)

Bacardi this week will create what it says is the first music video directed entirely by Instagram users in real time, according to a statement shared with Mobile Marketer. The "Live Moves" video will feature dancing duo Les Twins and premiere on IGTV, Instagram's new long-form video hub, as part of the rum brand's broader "Do What Moves You" campaign.

Facebook sets off its own fireworks in inadvertently blocking patriotic posts (multiple news outlets)

Example 1: A newspaper serially publishing the Declaration of Independence on social media this week got an unexpected surprise: Facebook had blocked one of the posts. The Liberty County Vindicator, a newspaper in southeastern Texas, had been posting portions of the Declaration on Facebook each day leading up to the Fourth of July. But the tenth installment of the foundational document didn't post -- and Facebook said it was because of hate speech.

"Somewhere in paragraphs 27-31 of the Declaration of Independence Thomas Jefferson wrote something that Facebook finds offensive," Casey Stinnett, managing editor of the Vindicator, said on the paper's website Monday. "The Vindicator received a notice from Facebook saying that the post 'goes against our standards on hate speech.'" They later rescinded the block.

 Example 2: Facebook was called out by country artist Wes Cook Band after it prevented the group from using the social network's paid tools to promote its song "I Stand for the Flag." The Nashville-based group released a video on Facebook Monday. They planned to promote it for 24 hours using the paid promotion tools that the social network provides. The request was initially approved and then rejected by Facebook, which cited the video’s "political content," according to the band. Late Tuesday, Facebook told Fox News that the decision has been overturned.

 

Instagram launches group chat; Facebook cryptocurrency policy revised & more headlines - Week Ending June 29, 2018

June 29, 2018

Welcome to Facebook Friday, your weekly recap of news and notes.

POLICY, PRIVACY & POLITICS

Ringing in the data proving to be more challenging (WSJ)

Wednesday’s edition of the Wall Street Journal reported on the challenges Facebook is having in tracking where data to third party app developers went after it left the platform. A major issue is that many of the app developers have gone out of business or are otherwise MIA and aren’t responding to Facebook’s information requests. Facebook also doesn’t have legal authority to compel those developers to cooperate.

Facebook reverses ban on cryptocurrency ads (Mobile Marketer)

Facebook eased its ban on cryptocurrency marketing from January with a new set of rules allowing preapproved advertisers to promote the digital money. Crypto-advertisers will now need to fill out a form, providing details such as whether they hold required licenses and regulatory circulation, so Facebook can assess their eligibility for advertising on the platform. 

Facebook tweaks political ads policy (Digiday)

Facebook to launch a news publisher-specific section of its ads archive called Promoted News, which will carry the articles publishers have paid to promote that fall under what Facebook considers political topics.

NEW FUNCTIONALITY

Instagram introduces group video calls, new explore layout (Social Media Today)

Announced in May, Instagram released its new group video calling option, along with an updated Explore layout and new AR tools this week. Up to four friends can join. Interesting insight: more than 375 million of the app’s billion users now interact via messaging each month, while Instagram’s research shows that 85% of people’s messages within the app are shared with the same three friends.

NEWS YOU CAN USE

Instagram offers new guide to creating and uploading IGTV content (Social Media Today)

Just a few days after its launch in Vegas, Instagram released a guide on Wednesday on how to create content for its IGTV platform. It includes tips, apps and accessories you can consider to help improve your IGTV videos.

Facebook adds keyword 'Snooze' option to help user avoid spoilers (Social Media Today)

Don’t want to see who got the final rose on “The Bachelor”? Facebook just began testing a feature that can help you avoid spoilers or, basically, any topic you don’t want to see in your News Feed for up to 30 days.

Facebook releases new SDK Code setup simplifying their app installation (Adweek)

Any marketer who has implemented SDK code to track mobile app events will like this: it’s getting simpler. Facebook writes their new tool “simplifies the setup process by enabling marketers to add, modify and remove events with a simple point-and-click tool. Marketers no longer need to ask their developers to write code, release a new version of their app and wait for people to update—a process that could take weeks, if not months.”

OTHER HEADLINES

Facebook expands auto-translation tools in Messenger (TechCrunch)

Facebook Messenger will now offer optional auto-translation of English to Spanish and vice-versa for all users in the United States and Mexico. Now when users receive a message that is different from their default language, Messenger’s AI assistant M will ask if they want it translated. All future messages in that thread will be auto-translated unless a user turns it off. Facebook plans to bring the feature to more language pairs and countries soon. Facebook began offering translation technology for News Feed posts and comments in 2011.

Oculus launches Oculus TV (Social Media Today)

First IGTV, now Facebook-owned Oculus is getting into the television arena with the launching of a new VR TV viewing app. Projections are that Oculus will ship around a million new units this year with the holiday shopping season seeing the biggest push.

Facebook expands its Messenger Kids app beyond the U.S. to Canada and Peru (Venture Beat)

Facebook is expanding its controversial Messenger Kids app beyond the U.S. and into Canada and Peru, the company announced today. Messenger Kids will now also be made available in Spanish and French in all three of its available markets. Messenger Kids originally launched for kids aged 6 to 12 in the U.S. last December.

Facebook patents system that can use your phone's mic to monitor TV habits (New York Times)

System would allow Facebook to identify what adults and children are watching based on ambient noise The New York Times Op-Ed piece reveals other interesting patent technology under the Facebook roof.  

Jif scoops Neil Patrick Harris for Facebook Live comedy show (Mobile Marketer)

From our Ohio backyard, J.M. Smucker peanut butter brand Jif announced a partnership with actor Neil Patrick Harris to promote its new Jif Power Ups snacks via a news release. Harris hosted "The Parenting Struggle is Real…Funny" on Facebook Live on June 26.

 
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