TikTok will no longer let people opt-out of personalised ads
Prefer not to see personalised ads? Well if you’re a TikToker, soon you won’t have much of a choice, as the platform is making personalised ads mandatory. This means you will start getting ads in the app based on the kind of content you engage with, whether you want them or not. Currently, TikTok has a setting that allows users to choose whether the ads they see will be based on their in-app activity. This will change from April 15th but people will still be able to control whether the app creates personalised ads based on data pulled from other platforms and websites. With this update, things are about to get personal.
Facebook is working on Instagram for kids
Have you had your little one tugging on your arm begging for a social media account? It’s a dilemma many parents face, and one that Facebook is aware of. The company is working on a version of Instagram for children under 13, that will allow parents to have transparency and control. Instagram’s current policy bars children under 13 from the platform, with this new version allowing kids to participate in the fun world of socials, but in a more controlled environment. With the creation of Messenger Kids, it’s clear Facebook are keen to tap into this next generation of social media users.
YouTube Shorts beta kicks off in the US
We’ve got TikTok and we’ve got Reels, now YouTube has brought another player into the short-form video game; Shorts. The feature is launching in beta form in the United States, and has been available for several months already in India. Shorts features a multi-segment camera that makes it easy for creators to string together clips, a wide selection of music tracks, and a captioning tool. Similarly to TikTok, users will be able to swipe through a continuous, algorithmically generated feed of short videos, subscribe to their favourite creators and explore specific hashtags or sound. It’s not clear when Shorts will become available to other countries, with the feature in early stages.
Facebook will court writers to its newsletter product with paid deals
It’s no secret that Facebook has been working on a newsletter product, which will start being tested on the platform soon. As part of the test, Facebook will also court writers, some of whom the company will pay. The initial user group will be composed of small and independent writers, with the newsletter tool helping writers to set up a website outside of Facebook. This move into the world of newsletters comes following the success of Substack. Substack has paid advances to multiple writers in order to bring them over to the platform, with Facebook adopting this technique in order to set its newsletter offering up for success. Time to put my writing skills to the test.
Instagram adds new teen safety tool
With most teens proud owners of several social media accounts, the safety measures employed by social platforms have never been so important. Instagram is the latest to update its teen-focused privacy settings, making it more difficult for adults to interact with these users. The new features restrict adult users from being able to contact teens who didn’t already follow them. The exception to this allows teens to interact with adult family members and other trusted adults on the platform. If a teen has already connected with an adult and is DM’ing them, they’ll be notified if that adult is exhibiting suspicious behaviour, and will be allowed to block, report or restrict the adult from further contact.
YouTube to warn creators of copyright issues
People can make some serious cash when it comes to YouTube, yet copyright can cause a real headache for creators. Now YouTube is attempting to make the process easier by rolling out a new tool called ‘Checks.’ Checks tells a creator ahead of time if their video contains copyrighted material and complies with advertising guidelines. The new feature relies on Content ID; if YouTube’s copyright identification system finds a violation after a video is scanned, the rights holders policy will be automatically applied to the video, resulting in either the video being blocked entirely or the rights holders monetising the video instead.
Snap doubles down on fashion and e-commerce
Snapchat is no longer just face filters and fun, with the company ramping up its involvement in e-commerce and shopping. The company has acquired Fit Analytics, a startup based in Berlin that has built technology to help shoppers find the right-sized apparel and footwear from online retailers. The startup already works with a number of big retailers, with this acquisition enabling Snap to build out its shopping platform. This clever move will allow Snap to diversify its revenues and secure a reputation as a leading e-commerce platform that will lead to lucrative advertising business from a range of brands. Looks like my credit card is about to have a workout.
Twitch makes it easier for streamers to avoid copyright strikes
Hoping to stay on the right side of copyright law? Twitch is making it easier for you to be a savvy streamer by adding tools that lets users mass delete their recorded streams. With a strike system in place, copyright offenders risk getting permabanned, with the new feature allowing streamers to play on the right side of copyright law. This has come as a result of the flurry of Digital Millennium Copyright Act takedowns that streamers received last year. In the event that a streamer gets hit with a DMCA takedown request, they’ll get a message in their on-site inbox. Time to get copyright compliant.
Giphy adds Hire Me Button
Ready to work? Let the world know with Giphy’s new ‘Hire Me’ button, that makes it easier for brands and professionals to locate and hire artists on its platform. Verified artists can go to their settings and activate the Hire Me feature, which will add the button to their channel, alerting any logged-in users that they are available for hire. With several artists using social media as a way to promote their work and services, this is a nice addition from Giphy to give their users a little boost when it comes to getting themselves noticed.
Ones to watch
Twitter beings testing a way to watch YouTube videos from the home timeline in iOS and an "undo tweet" feature for potential subscription service.