Tuesday Tune-Up #435

Nick Carolan

Facebook looks to buy Giphy for $400 million
Facebook has announced that it is buying popular GIF-making and sharing website Giphy for a reported price of $400 million. As part of the new deal, Facebook plans to integrate the massive GIF library into Instagram and more of its apps, with Giphy living on as part of the Instagram team. According to Facebook, 50 percent of all of Giphy’s traffic comes from its apps, with half of that coming from Instagram alone. However, in the US a number of senators are currently pushing to block the deal on the grounds of antitrust enforcement.

Messenger Rooms launches globally
Facebook’s video calling platform, Messenger Rooms, is now available globally. It allows up to 50 people to join a group video call at the same time. The capability will be extended to Instagram Direct, WhatsApp and Facebook’s Portal video-calling devices soon.

Facebook expands brand safety tools
Continuing on the Facebook front, Facebook is expanding the availability of several brand safety tools – including its Content and Publisher Whitelists – in order to give advertisers more control over where their ads appear within in-stream placements. The new tools can be accessed via the Brand Safety Controls interface in Business Manager.

Instagram adds new anti-bullying features
As part of its anti-bullying efforts, Instagram today announced a series of new features – including tag controls and content management tools – aimed at helping users better manage negative comments, as well as highlight positive ones.

Instagram supports SMEs with new Small Business Sticker and more
In a recent blog post, Instagram announced the launch of its Support Small Business Sticker which users can incorporate into their Stories to shout out about their favourite local business. If that business is mentioned, it will be able to repost the content to its own Stories or message people who tagged them. Among other things, the blog also included a reminded to users that Facebook’s Businesses Nearby feature can be used to find information on local businesses.

Twitter makes it easier to see quote tweets on iOS
Twitter has altered the way it displays retweets to make it easier for users to see how many people have retweeted a tweet and added a comment. The new update, currently only available on the iOS version of the app, now breaks retweets into two columns – ones commenting on the retweet and a list of retweets with no comment. The update will be coming to the web app and Android in the coming weeks.

Twitter adds labels and warnings to COVID-19 tweets
Twitter has begun adding labels and warning messages to tweets containing disputed or misleading information related to the coronavirus pandemic. The move follows the platform’s update in March, requiring the removal of tweets that increase the chance of someone contracting or transmitting the virus.

LinkedIn makes its push into virtual events
LinkedIn has announced that it is merging its Events and LinkedIn Live features into a new offering called Virtual Events, aimed at making it easier for companies to hold live events online. The move will allow companies to limit live events to audiences that have opted in to attend, while the relevant event discussions and information will remain on a dedicated page.

LinkedIn introduces Polls
LinkedIn has (finally) introduced its own Polls functionality, allowing members to source opinions from their connections, groups or from the whole network with just the click of a few buttons.

TikTok launches its Youth Portal
TikTok has rolled out Youth Portal, its dedicated hub to give teens and parents a single destination for safety resources, best practices and guides to the application’s tools. The feature launched globally in over 15 languages, including English, French, German, Hindi, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, Russian and Thai. More educational resources will be added in the coming months.

Helping Didi say ‘Thank you’ to healthcare workers
As a way to thank essential healthcare workers for their enduring and life-saving assistance throughout the Coronavirus pandemic, rideshare service DiDi developed a service dubbed DiDi Hero, offering healthcare workers safer and sanitised rides to work at half the price.

To ensure they could feel all our love and gratitude, and to get the word out, we created a social campaign asking the community to share their messages of thanks to Australia’s healthcare heroes, which were then delivered in-app to frontline workers during their DiDi Hero trips, and billboarded across DiDi’s social channels. We were overwhelmed with the response from Australians, using their creativity to share their message of thanks (and they just keep coming!) We also created a short video that followed three real frontline workers on their DiDi Hero rides to work, only to be met with a surprise call from Michael, a recovered COVID-19 survivor, to share his touching personal message of thanks with them. 

You can read more about how we helped Didi get the message out here.

Foxtel’s new streaming service “Binge” rumoured to launch in Australia next week
For the bingers of Australia, Foxtel’s new streaming service is rumoured to launch next week. The news of Foxtel’s streaming service, Binge, comes just weeks after the company announced it had secured exclusive rights to air HBO Max content in Australia. Though this deal is short term, it means HBO won’t be launching its own service in Australia for the time being, giving Aussies an excuse to add Binge to their streaming service queue.

Ones to watch
On Friday, Facebook announced that it has begun running a small test of skippable mid-roll in-stream video ads. Mid-roll videos of 10 to 15 seconds will be eligible for the test, including existing ads.

This edition of the Tuesday Tune-Up was prepared by Shaun Profeta, with additional reporting by Ryan Dubras.