Here is the news from Facebook
Stung by criticism of its social platform as a feeding ground for false stories and fake news, Facebook took the highly unusual step this week of taking out full page adverts in the UK printed press to give the public tips on spotting a fake story.
The tips included common sense reminders like looking twice at headlines, URLs and photos for a story, down to more forensic background checks like looking at the source of the story, the date of publication, the author and even unusual formatting.
This is especially significant in the run up to a general election in the UK, where Facebook content will be consumed by millions of voters.
Facebook is also taking steps on its platform to expose users to all sides of news stories.
The ‘echo chamber’ where people only see shares of stories from their friendship circle and therefore no conflicting or opposing views, is seen as a downside of the information age social media has brought to everyone.
Facebook’s introduction of ‘latest conversations’ shows users not only what is creating buzz on the social network, but also posts on the subject from people outside of that user’s friendship circle.
As critical thinking diminishes with the rise of fake news, this is at least a visible attempt to give people deeper understanding of the news from all angles.
Snapchat influencers flock to Instagram
Instagram’s copying of Snapchat’s Stories feature has been such a hit that many influencers on Snapchat are now switching sides.
A study of social media influencers by Mediakix found that their posting on Instagram was 25 per cent more frequent than on Snapchat since the launch of Stories.
The reasons are clear: while Instagram continues to grow and recently passed 700million users, Snapchat has suffered a decline in growth of 82 per cent. And where the influencers go, marketing money follows.
Celebs warned over Instagram ad posts
Meanwhile, those who use Instagrammers with large followings to promote products should be wary over high profile action in the United States.
America’s Federal Trade Commission has issued warning letters to 45 celebrities – including Victoria Beckham, Naomi Campbell, Heidi Klum, Jennifer Lopez and Kourtney Kardashian – for plugging products on their accounts without clearly signposting the relationship they had with the brands.
The brands in question include global giants such as Adidas, Puma, Chanel, Johnson & Johnson and Yves Saint Laurent who really should know better.
However, the warning is clear to the little guys using influencers, too – be transparent in all dealings or risk falling foul.
YouTube now gets higher ratings than traditional TV channels
YouTube has revealed that it is now getting more active users in the evening ‘prime time’ hours of TV watching than traditional channels.
The video streaming platform revealed that in the United States, more 18-49 year olds are visiting YouTube than any TV network, and that the number of channels with more than 1million subscribers has rocketed by 75 per cent in the past year.
And it’s not just on mobile, tablets and laptops that YouTube content is being seen. The figures from YouTube also revealed that the amount of time YouTube content is being watched on the main TV in the home has doubled year on year.
Picking up the Slack
Internal messaging service Slack is now using AI to improve its search functionality and help users find the most knowledgeable people in their companies.
Queries put into Slack’s search bar, for instance ‘North West sales targets’ or ‘branch openings’ will show the person or people in the business who discuss this most often.
The aim is to tap into knowledge within a business to help everyone get to the answer quicker.