We Are Social’s Tuesday Tune Up #508


Instagram unveils Reels Play bonus program and accessibility features
Fancy $10,000 turning up in your bank account? Well you better get involved in Instagram’s monthly Reels Play bonus program. Similar to other platforms’ incentivising programs, the Reels Play bonus program offers creators cash for particularly entertaining and popular Reels. To be eligible, creators must be at least 18 years old and have an existing reel with at least 1,000 views. Also rolling out across Reels are text-to-speech and voice effect tools, helping blind and low-vision people understand written text. This is already a key feature on TikTok, and will be an important addition to Reels, improving accessibility for users.

TikTok ventures into gaming
TikTok has got its head in the game, announcing a partnership with mobile gaming giant Zynga. Zynga plans to launch ‘Disco Loco 3D’ exclusively on the TikTok platform, a game in which players collect their own dance moves while challenging friends and avoiding obstacles. ‘Disco Loco 3D’ is set to give TikTok a better understanding of how its community engages with games, with the app confirming that discussions with other game makers are underway. With plenty of gamers among the TikTok audience, this is a smart move from the platform, set to expand over the next 12 months.

YouTube is removing the dislike count on all videos across the platform
YouTube is saying adios to dislikes, removing the reaction on all videos across the platform. However, dislikes aren’t gone for good, they’re just hidden from public view, meaning creators will still be alerted to your opinion on their content. By making dislikes private, YouTube hopes to reduce harassment on the platform, as well as ‘dislike attacks.’ Dislike attacks happen when a group teams up to drive up the number of dislikes a video receives. When it comes to this latest tweak, it’s a thumbs up from us.

Instagram is testing a Take a Break feature
We’ve all found ourselves getting sucked into social media for a longer amount of time than we’d anticipated. Well now Instagram is encouraging users to take a break with a new feature that suggests alternative ways to spend your time. Currently in testing stages, ‘Take a Break’ is opt-in, meaning those users who turn on the feature will receive notifications after a set amount of time, asking them to ‘listen to a favourite song’ or ‘take a few deep breaths.’ This is a big step in the right direction when it comes to ensuring the welfare of teens on the platform, many of whom have admitted to feeling ‘addicted’ to the app. If testing goes well, ‘Take a Break’ may roll out officially as soon as next month.

Twitter is launching a dedicated crypto team
Crypto is getting its own crew at Twitter, with the company building a new division for ‘all things blockchain at Twitter.’ Twitter Crypto will set the strategy for the future of virtual goods and currencies on the platform. This comes after the app announced it was enabling creators on its platform to be tipped in Bitcoin, with the platform pushing towards decentralising social media. The company says there is “massive and growing interest among creators to use decentralised apps to manage virtual goods and currencies.”

Twitter Blue adds new features
Twitter’s subscription feature, Twitter Blue, has begun adding new features and expanding to new countries. First launched in Canada and Australia in June on iOS, the service is now available in the US and New Zealand, on Android and the web. New features include an undo button, allowing you to recall tweets before they send, as well as a reader mode for tweet threads, a bookmarks folder, and the ability to theme your Twitter app. Welcome to a whole new Twitter.

Twitter will now show full-sized images on the web
Twitter is to drop the crop, meaning that you’ll now see full sized images in your feed. The platform’s cropped image preview hasn’t been a fan favourite for a while now, with pictures often appearing weirdly formatted and far from aesthetically pleasing. When scrolling from now on, images will be seen in their full-sized glory. Nice one Twitter.

Clubhouse rolls out ‘Replay’ feature
A feature that first burst onto the scene in October, ‘Replay’ is now available to all users on iOS and Android. The feature allows creators to record an audio room so that anyone who misses the action live can check it out later.