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Facebook Friday - 6/8/18

June 8, 2018

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

 

PRIVACY & FAKE-NEWS CRISIS

Data to Phone Makers; Private Posts Public - Another Week of Privacy Issues (New York Times, Recode)

Despite its best efforts to diffuse, privacy glitches dominated the headlines this week with a New York Times article revealing on Monday details of deals Facebook struck with around 60 device makers, including Apple, Amazon, Microsoft, Samsung and several U.S. government-sensitive Chinese brands. Late Thursday afternoon news broke from Recode of a Facebook software bug that exposed private posts of up to 14 million users. Facebook said the bug occurred when the company was creating a new way to share featured items on a user’s profile, such as photos.

 

Now Hiring… Facebook Fact Checkers (The Guardian)

The Guardian reports today that Facebook has posted jobs this week for “news credibility specialists” to fact-check content that appears on its site.

 

Facebook Sets Original News Slate on Watch Platform; Expected July Roll Out (Deadline)

Facebook has unveiled its first slate of funded news shows within its Facebook Watch platform, with ABC News, CNN, Fox News and others lining up for the experiment. While there is an obvious revenue-sharing play here with publishers, Facebook is positioning the formal play into news as a “destination for high quality and timely news content on the platform.” They may be onto something; a recent Pew Research Center study found that 44% of U.S. adults get some or all of their news through Facebook.

 

'Trending' Topics Section Comes Down (Fortune)

Staying on the news theme… Facebook announced this week that it’s killing its trending news summaries at the top of your home page. It wasn’t popular and they want to “make way for future news experiences” on the platform.

 

NEW FUNCTIONALITY

Instagram Explores Longform Video (WSJ)

Instagram is testing a new feature that will include long-form video up to an hour in length, according to a report on Wednesday in the Wall Street Journal. The maximum length video users can post today is one minute. Reports indicate Instagram will offer a dedicated space featuring scripted shows, music videos and more in vertically oriented, full-screen, high-def 4K resolution.  More news on this is slated for later this month.

 

Facebook Launches Ads In Marketplace (Forbes)

Introduced in 2016, Marketplace is a Craigslist-like platform where users buy and sell locally. Facebook announced that businesses can now place ads in the Marketplace in order to reach people where they shop. The ads from businesses will appear side-by-side with other products and services in Marketplace.  

 

Share Videos with Music on Facebook (Facebook)

Facebook is working with the music industry to enable users to include original, copyrighted music in their videos / stories with an eye toward opening up more creativity and keeping video enhancements front and center. In test mode now.

 

NEWS YOU CAN USE

New Tools for Nonprofit Fundraisers (Facebook)

People use Facebook Fundraisers to support the causes and organizations that mean the most to them. Earlier this week, the company added new features to help make fundraisers more impactful and accessible:

  • Brand and public figure Pages can now fundraise for nonprofit causes.
  • Nonprofit Pages can now also start fundraisers for their own causes.
  • People can now invite friends to manage a fundraiser together, helping to expand their network of supporters.

 

Under the Hood with Instagram’s Algorithm (Social Media Today)

Instagram’s algorithm takes into account three main factors, which weight the system more than anything else: Interest, Timeliness and Relationship. This was shared earlier this week with several tech journalists. The key nugget was how the system will assess the actual visual content of posts via Instagram’s image recognition tools.

 

Christmas in June: Facebook Releases Holiday Shopping Behaviors (Social Media Today)

Just in time for Q4 activation, a new research report looks at how shoppers are using social media and their mobile devices in the holiday shopping journey.

 

OTHER HEADLINES

America’s Teens Are Choosing YouTube Over Facebook So Will New Lip Sync Live Functionality Draw Them Back? (Bloomberg, TechCrunch)

Facebook dominated among people aged 13-17 three years ago. Now just 51% of teens in that age group say they use Facebook, with YouTube, Facebook-owned Instagram and Snapchat coming out as the most popular social networks (in that order). To re-capture the important demographic, Facebook announced this week that it is testing a feature that rivals popular teen app Musically. Called Lip Sync Live, the feature lets users mime along to a popular song on a Facebook Live broadcast. Remains to be seen if fast-follower strategy (that is working so well in the Instagram-Snap Chat battle) will work with in the music space on Facebook.

 

WhatsHappened with WhatsApp Founders? (WSJ)

Facebook’s $22 billion purchase of WhatsApp in 2014 gave it access to more than 1 billion people who send around 65 billion messages each day. But for advertisers, there’s been no path to take advantage of its scale. The Wall Street Journal has an interesting, inside view of the philosophical differences on monetizing the tool which ultimately led to the two WhatsApp founders leaving.

 

Facebook Friday - 5/25/18

May 25, 2018

Welcome to Facebook Friday, your weekly recap of news and notes. Busy week as Mr. Zuckerberg went overseas to tip-toe with lawmakers while the company ratcheted-up their campaign to mitigate News Feed fake-news.

 

PRIVACY & FAKE-NEWS CRISIS

  • No European vacation during CEO tour to region (WSJ) Zuckerberg meets with EU lawmakers and French President Macron to tamper down fake-news and data concerns. He stays on-point with messaging consistent with Congressional hearing earlier this month.
  • Full-court press on fake-news (Social Media Today) In addition to the recently released public image ads and homepage educational campaign, Facebook just produced a 13-minute behind-the-scenes “Facing Facts” video on how they are working to mitigate fake-news and bad actors from their news feed. Fascinating look. Also, the company issued a request for proposals from academics eager to study false news on the platform. 
  • GDPR activist already filing complaints against Facebook (TechCrunch) Today is day 1 of the much-anticipated General Data Protection Regulations – or GDPR. Facebook privacy critic, Max Schrems, is on the offensive already. He feels the company is forcing consent vs. allowing users free choice to opt-in to the revamped privacy statements. (TechCrunch)
  • Report: Facebook unharmed by Cambridge Analytica crisis (Business Insider) Goldman Sachs report says number of active mobile users & time spent on the platform rose in April compared to the same month a year earlier. 

 

NEW FUNCTIONALITY

  • Facebook tests influencer search engine for marketers (TechCrunch) Facebook wants to help businesses find creators who can reach their target audience in an authentic way, while allowing creators a path to monetizing their Facebook content and fan base. ‘Branded Content Matching’ platform in test mode.
  • Facebook launches new tools for Groups, improving functionality and potential (Social Media Today) Facebook continues to add more tools to groups, boosting the functionality, and potential, of the option. Facebook Groups now have more than a billion monthly active users, which is more than Instagram and Snapchat combined. And according to Facebook more than 100 million people are members of what they call "very meaningful" groups.
  • Instagram launches option to mute profiles; other new SnapChat-esque tools (Social Media Today) New option of muting profiles will enable users to stop seeing updates from people without having to unfollow them. Other SnapChat-like functionality in the works: (1) time spent in app listing, (2) music stickers, (3) slow motion mode, (4) cinemagraphs and (5) Q and A stickers.
  • New home service professional experience in Marketplace (Facebook) More people ask for recommendations related to home services on Facebook in the US than any other topic. As a result, Facebook announced a partnership with Handy, HomeAdvisor and Porch to help users easily manage their next home project from proposal to completion with rated professionals.
  •  Evolving WhatsApp could present new opportunities for brands (Social Media Today) WhatsApp looks to be giving business tools more focus, with advanced features and tools now being rolled out. New functionality includes new group tools and video calling.

 

OTHER HEADLINES

  • Publisher trade association pens letter to Facebook (WSJ) News Media Alliance wrote in a letter to Facebook that the platform’s new political ad transparency policies blur the lines between reporting and propaganda. Publishers clearly concerned about potential financial impact from lost political advertising due to new policy.
  • Facebook jumps 22 spots in latest Fortune 500 rankings. (Fortune) New spot is #76 buoyed by a 47% year-over-year increase in revenue and 57% profit gain.
 
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