Tuesday Tune-Up #259

Google introduces ‘fact-check’ label for news stories
As social sites have struggled to help users distinguish between ‘real news’ and ‘fake news,’ Google has added a new ‘fact-check’ label to its News Service. The site already uses tags such as ‘opinion,’ ‘local source’ and ‘highly cited,’ and has added this new one due to the rise of fact-checking sites. Google algorithms will sort out which articles contain fact checks using the schema.org ClaimReview system. It will also look for sites that follow commonly-accepted criteria for fact checks. Whilst it’s currently being tested in the US and UK (perhaps due to their contentious elections this year…), I’d imagine there will be a global roll out once they’ve worked out the kinks. Don’t fact-check that on me, though…


Snapchat updates “Stories” so people can create customisable lists

Similar to other algorithms, Snapchat is putting a high focus on delivering the best content to its consumers by allowing them easy access to what they’re really interested in – Stories from friends they actually care about. As such, Stories will no longer auto-play, and users will instead will be able to build customised playlists. While this update is great for users, like any algorithm it will make it more difficult for brands to reach their audiences. Create better, more relevant content that people will actually want to watch? Challenge. Accepted.



Seasonal content planning made easy by Facebook

Who needs Santa when you have Facebook to make your holiday wishes come true? For anyone currently planning their Christmas campaigns, Facebook released this handy infographic with data from last year’s festive season to call out conversation spikes and behaviour patterns that should make it easier for brands to reach their target audiences at the right time.

Speaking of seasonally-relevant content, I love Facebook’s monthly “Hot Topics” updates. Here’s a helpful September conversation snapshot for Australia.

Facebook tests ads in Groups

Facebook is testing different ways of delivering ads to users in order to find new revenue streams, as it will most likely reach its maximum News Feed ad load in mid-2017. It’s a no brainer that, with one billion users, the Groups feature is a quick win and a pure gold mine. The platform is currently testing it in Australia, Canada, Ireland and New Zealand, and the ads will look the same as News Feed ads. They can be targeted by Group topic as well as the standard identity-based targeting. This might be useful for some, but I don’t know how I feel about Facebook interrupting my friends’ conversations. Unfriended, Facebook, unfriended.

Facebook releases “Marketplace” – an integrated Gumtree feature

Well on its way to becoming the world’s one-stop-shop social platform, Facebook released a tab within its app dedicated solely to peer-to-peer shopping. Given that 50 million people already visit “buy and sell” Groups on Facebook each month, there is obviously a high demand for this kind of feature. The tab lets you browse a relevancy-sorted feed of things to buy from people who live nearby, and you can also list whatever you have for sale. Goodbye, garbage!

Is this new VR emoji by Facebook the future of social VR?

Yes, we all love emojis, but these new VR emojis are taking it to the next level. Consider it Facebook’s attempt to convey emotion in virtual reality by allowing your avatar’s eyes, eye brows, mouth and other facial features to change based on how we exhibit body language in the real world. Because multiple skin colours just weren’t cutting it, Apple. Considering there’s actually science behind how humans consume emojis, these may not only ‘wow’ users for a few minutes, but also potentially change the game in digital communication (or at least up the ante…).


Julian Assange gets his internet cut off

Things just got a whole lot bleaker for Julian Assange, who has been living in the Ecuadorian Embassy for four years, after his internet link was ‘intentionally severed by a state party.’ Coincidentally, this all happened while Wikileaks was busy publishing email archives from Hillary Clinton’s campaign manager, John Podesta. Wikileaks has said a contingency plan is in place to get him back online, but he’ll just have to busy himself with a good book in the meantime.

Screen Shot 2016-10-18 at 2.56.40 pm

Twitter sale stalls as Salesforce pull out of the running

The sale of Twitter no longer seems quite as imminent now that Salesforce has bowed out of the race following the lead of Google and Disney. Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff simply said, “In this case we’ve walked away. It wasn’t the right fit for us.” The search for Twitter’s own Daddy Warbucks continues. Maybe they can list it on Facebook Marketplace? #twitterforsale

Pinterest finally hits 150 million monthly users

Pinterest was predicted to hit the 150 million user mark by the end of 2015. Now, in October 2016, ten months later, they FINALLY made it. Here in Australia, Pinterest is the sixth most used social media platform with 11% of Aussies using it (according to the Sensis Social Media Report 2016, that is). Slow and steady pins the race? Either way, well done, Pinterest!

Spotify launches vertical video ads with new ‘Branded Moments’

Branded Moments are Spotify’s first vertical video ads, which they have been busy promoting to agencies in Madison Avenue, claiming that their knowledge of consumer music choices gives a unique insight to what users are up to. Ads will be grouped into six categories – chill time, workout, party, dinner, focus and sleep. Consider this Spotify’s attempt to offer brands more personalised and contextually-relevant ads on the platform where they can reach 70 million free listeners. Would you interrupt the music to advertise on Spotify? Tell us in the comments!


Periscope Producer allows streaming with professional equipment

Hot on the heels of Facebook and YouTube, Periscope is getting a new feature called Periscope Producer, which allows live video to be streamed using professional equipment. The move should take the platform’s content away from solely shaky phone cam footage. Content creators, rejoice!

This post courtesy of @VanessaMueller