Instagram hits 800m users & sees in-app video creation quadruple
Insta is already overtaking Snapchat, but could YouTube be next? The last five months of user growth have been the fastest of Instagram's existence, with 100 million users signing up between April and September. Interestingly, production of videos within the app has quadrupled in the last year and of the 800 million user base, 250 million actively create Stories.

Twitter to trial 280 character count limit

Despite ongoing issues with trolls and hate speech, Twitter will now let users say more by doubling the character count. The goal is to stop users from having to shove their thoughts into the 140 character format. So can you really tell a full story in 280 characters? I just did!

Brands can now sponsor Snap’s 3D World Lenses 
Who’d have thought a dancing hot dog could change the world? Well, that little fella may have played a part in encouraging Snapchat to roll out its 3D World Lenses to advertisers. The Lenses use the phone’s front camera to overlay animated characters onto real-life settings, and data has shown that Sponsored Lenses can result in a 6.4% increase in brand awareness. One of the first brands to trial the news lenses is Warner Bros, who created one featuring the ‘Spinner’ car from the new Blade Runner film.

Snapchat to launch augmented reality art platform 

The world could use more art, right? Well, Snapchat seems to think so. The platform's new augmented reality art platform will feature pop artist Jeff Koons and others allowing art to be pinned to specific locations so users can see it when they hold up their phones in the right spot. Snapchat will solicit signups from artists who want their art added to the platform. Because street sculptures and architecture are so 20th century...

Facebook facilitates blood donations in India 

As part of an initiative for National Blood Donation Day in India on October 1st, Facebook rolled out a message in the News Feed requesting people to sign up for blood donation, as well as offering a new section of the profile they can fill out. If the program goes well in India, it might be rolled out in other markets requesting a certain blood type in a certain location, and then it will notify nearby donors that qualify.

Facebook ramps up in recruitment sector by partnering with ZipRecruiter

Facebook, it must be exhausting to eclipse every other platform. Despite LinkedIn leading online recruitment, Facebook has made no secret of its plans to enter the online recruitment market. The new integration of ZipRecruiter - an aggregator that allows companies to post job ads across the web - will allow Facebook to target their 2 billion monthly active users with relevant job opportunities.

WhatsApp now completely blocked in China
All functionality of the messaging platform WhatsApp has now been blocked in China. Users had been experiencing disruption to image and video sharing on the app, but it seems that even text functions have been shut down by the Chinese government’s firewall.

This post courtesy of @vanessa_mller