Facebook rolls out fact-checking operation in UK
Facebook has appointed independent charity, Full Fact, as its first fact-checking partner in the UK; in an attempt to further tackle misinformation on the platform. Full Fact will be responsible for reviewing and rating the accuracy of content on the social network. Posts, links and videos found to contain false information will then be tagged accordingly as a warning to potential readers and sharers. No one will be stopped from sharing or reading any false stories - although the platform's algorithm will demote the content so that it reaches fewer people.
Instagram lets users share posts to multiple accounts at the same time
Because one post of your breakfast is never enough: Instagram has announced a new feature that will let iOS users publish posts to different accounts they control, simultaneously. All you need to do to use the new feature is select which accounts the post should go to within the composer screen.
Instagram allows direct video scheduling via third-party services
Instagram has updated its API to include a new feature which will (finally!) allow business profiles to schedule video content on the platform. Previously, scheduling on Instagram was limited to single image posts; but before long most third-party management platforms (including Buffer and Hootsuite) will be enabled with this new feature. Currently, the update has only been implemented by Instagram Marketing Partner, Social Report.
WhatsApp releases several new features for iOS
WhatsApp has released its version 2.19.10, the platform's first iOS update for 2019. It includes a wave of new features such as: Reply Privately - which allows participants of a group to reply privately to a chat; the ability to add stickers to photos and videos; and 3D Touch support - to let you preview a contact's status in the Status tab.
Facebook brings live streaming to Oculus Rift
Oculus Rift will soon let users share their VR experiences with friends on Facebook by enabling them to live stream what they're seeing in real-time. To use the update, you will need to select the "live stream to Facebook button from the Dash Menu when in VR mode". In addition to the update, Oculus is also beta testing a Public Homes feature which will provide users with a fun social hub to enjoy with friends, or to make new ones online.
Twitter plans new ways to display tweets
Twitter is planning to test new ways to display tweets, including "speech bubbles, indenting, and different colours determined by whether you follow someone or are replying". The new update will be made available to those lucky applicants who make it on to the beta programme over the coming weeks.
Twitter is working on events and analytics tools
Twitter has announced plans to help publishers better understand the content that resonates on the platform. At last week's CES, Twitter revealed a new kind of analytics dashboard, as well as a dashboard to track real-time information around events. Twitter’s VP of Product stated that it's very much an “early concept”, but will eventually allow publishers to track who's reading and engaging with their Twitter content, when they’re viewing it and what is working best.
Twitter and the NBA announce live streaming experiment
From February, Twitter will stream the second half of some NBA games, focusing on a single player. During the first half, the platform's users will be able to vote via @NBAonTNT for player they want the camera to follow in the second half. The player that 'wins' will then be the sole focus of the second-half live stream. A slightly confusing experiment, but one that shows Twitter and the NBA trying to pull live content onto social platforms, without sacrificing important TV deals.
The PGA extends streaming deal with Twitter
More good news for sports fans - The Professional Golfers Association (PGA) Tour has announced an extension to its broadcast partnership with Twitter. This means that Twitter will now be allowed to distribute nearly 140 hours of live competition from the tour, across 28 tournaments. New Saturday and Sunday morning coverage will “result in the most live PGA Tour content ever offered on Twitter", according to the PGA.
We are excited to announce we have extended our live streaming partnership with @TwitterSports through 2020.
— PGA TOUR (@PGATOUR) January 7, 2019
YouTube to remove automatic posting tools for Twitter and Google+
YouTube has told creators that, from 31st January, it's getting rid the option to automatically post their public YouTube activity with their followers on Twitter and Google+. The platform commented "We’ve found that social sharing works better when the message is more customized and takes advantage of social media features, such as @mentions. Overall, this provides a better experience for both you and your followers vs automatically generated posts."
TikTok looks to emerging markets with TikTok Lite
TikTok has been targeting emerging markets, with the launch of two versions of a “TikTok Lite” app in the latter half of 2018. Initially released in August 2018 in Thailand, the first version is now available in predominately Asian markets, and has 5 million installs. The second version has around 7.1 million total downloads, and is very popular in India, as well as being installed in countries including Egypt, Brazil and Algeria. TikTok Lite’s 12 million+ downloads represents around 3.6 percent of all TikTok downloads since August 2018, across the iOS and Google Play app stores.