A man holding a smartphone showing the icons for a number of social media apps (Photo by S3studio/Getty Images)

“Social Media Roundup” is a weekly roundup of news pertaining to all of your favorite websites and applications used for social networking. Published on Sundays, “Social Media Roundup” will help you stay up-to-date on all the important social media news you need to know.

Facebook

Video Premieres, Live Polls And Top Fans

Facebook has rolled out several new features to build the hype around video releases. The Premieres feature on Facebook can spark conversations and reactions around newly released videos in real-time with a live audience.

Fans will be able to vote on questions with interactive video polls — which is comparable to what you may have seen on Twitch. And the Top Fans feature highlights a creator’s most loyal fans by showing a badge next to their name.

Facebook’s video polls featureFacebook

“Other great ways to engage your fans include Groups, Live and Watch Parties. Tap into the power of Groups for super fans to connect with each other, and you! Go live once a week (or more) to source ideas and feedback and give fans a behind-the-scenes look from your latest shoot. You can also host a Watch Party in a Group. Watch Party is a new-ish feature that allows you and your fans to watch videos together and talk about them in real time to create a deeper sense of community,” said Facebook in an announcement.

New Comment Moderation And Reporting

Facebook has announced a new set of anti-bullying tools where users will be able to hide or delete multiple comments at once from the options menu of posts. This feature is available on desktops and Androids already, but it will not be on iOS until the next few months. And Facebook is going to be testing ways to easily block offensive words from appearing in comments.

“Being the target of unwanted attention can be stressful and some people may not feel comfortable reporting a bully or harasser. In other cases, bullying or harassment happens out of sight from victims,” said Facebook’s Global Head of Safety Antigone Davis in a blog post. “If you see a friend or family member being bullied or harassed, now you can report someone on their behalf via the menu above the post that you are concerned about. Once reported, our Community Operations team will review the post, keep your report anonymous, and determine whether it violates our Community Standards.”

Facebook also said that users will be able to appeal decisions on cases involving bullying and harassment. Back in April, Facebook announced a process for users to request another review of their photos, videos or posts that were taken down for violating Community Standards for nudity, hate speech or graphic violence and this has now been extended to bullying and harassment violations. And if you reported content for bullying or harassment and Facebook does not take it down after an initial review, you can ask for a second review if you think the company made a mistake.

Plus Facebook also partnered with several community organizations like the National Parent Teachers Association in the US to facilitate 200 community events in cities in every state for addressing challenges that families face when it comes to technology usage.

New AI Features In Marketplace

Facebook’s new Marketplace AI featuresFacebook

The Facebook Marketplace feature was first introduced in 2016 for users to buy and sell products locally. Currently, more than one in three users on Facebook in the US use Marketplace every month. In conjunction with the two-year milestone, Facebook also announced new artificial intelligence features for the Marketplace.

“Behind the scenes AI is making Marketplace more efficient and personalized for buyers, as well as helping sellers connect with more potential buyers, faster. AI can automatically improve the quality of photos and translate listings and Messenger conversations,” said Facebook in an announcement.

Facebook also launched new features that use AI for price range suggestions and auto-categorization. And the company is testing camera features that could use AI for recommending products that you might be interested in. So if you take a photo of a product you like, Facebook could show you listings of that same product or a similar one that is available through Marketplace.  

And another way that Facebook is using AI for its Marketplace service is by automatically detecting and removing inappropriate content.

Hackers Did Not Use Stolen Logins

Facebook sent a statement to Reuters that said hackers did not access other sites that uses its single sign-on as part of a cyber attack that the company disclosed last week. Last week, Facebook disclosed a security breach where hackers stole the login codes that allowed them to roughly 50 million accounts.

“We analyzed third-party access during the time of the attack we have identified. That investigation has found no evidence that the attackers accessed any apps using Facebook Login,” said Facebook VP Guy Rosen in the statement.

One of the reasons why a worst-case scenario was presented is due to compliance with the strict General Data Protection Regulation rules imposed by the European Union. The GDPR requires companies to disclose breaches within 72 hours of discovery otherwise face steep penalties.

Instagram

Adam Mosseri Named As Head Of Instagram

Instagram has announced that it has named Adam Mosseri, the Vice President of Product of the photo social network, as the head of the company. The promotion became effective on October 1st.

“Adam began his career as a designer, managed his own design consultancy, and then joined the Facebook design team in 2008. Since he joined, he moved from design into product management, and spent time working on Mobile then News Feed and most recently, we recruited him to Instagram,” said Instagram in an announcement. “In his role leading Instagram, Adam will oversee all functions of the business and will recruit a new executive team including a head of engineering, head of product and head of operations.”

Instagram founders Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger said that they believe Adam will help keep the community front and center. Systrom and Krieger said that they were going to be stepping down from the company on September 24th.

Scannable Nametags And School Communities Test

This past week, Instagram announced a couple of new features, of which one is still being tested. This includes a new nametag, which makes it easier to add friends in person. And Instagram is currently testing a new Instagram school communities feature in the US to help students connect with others from their university.

Facebook’s video polls featureFacebook

The nametag feature is a customizable identification card that allows users to find your Instagram profile when it is scanned via the iOS or Android version of the app. If you use Snapchat, then you may recognize that it is similar to the Snapcode feature.

You can scan the codes by tapping on the three-line menu on the profile. And it can be scanned when other users tap and hold on the code through the Instagram Stories camera or Scan Nametag button on the Nametag to follow you. On your Instagram Nametag, you can add emoji, selfies with filters and colors.

And Instagram is also testing school communities that allow users to showcase your school spirit and connect with students and recent grads from your university in a central place. To join a school community, you can add a line to your profile listing your university, class year, major, sports team, etc. 

Then you and others who have added the same university will be able to click to go to a directory listing all the people who have added that university so you can follow and message them as well. “Messages from people you don’t already follow will go to your pending inbox where you can choose to accept or decline—the same way Instagram Direct works today,” added Instagram in its announcement.

Snap

CEO Evan Spiegel Reportedly Acknowledges Redesign Was Rushed

According to an internal memo leaked to Cheddar, Snap CEO Evan Spiegel acknowledged that the company rushed out the redesign, which ended up solving one problem but created “many others.” Spiegel believed that the redesign should have been tested out more with a smaller community before it was rolled out to everyone. And since the design was not tested out much beforehand, a number of issues started appearing as it was in use.

“The biggest mistake we made with our redesign was compromising our core product value of being the fastest way to communicate. Our redesigned algorithmic Friend Feed made it harder to find the right people to talk to, and moving too quickly meant that we didn’t have time to optimize the Friend Feed for fast performance. We slowed down our product and eroded our core product value,” wrote Spiegel in the memo. “We expected influencers to be upset because we moved their Stories below the ones from our real friends. Influencers went from being at the top of the list on Snapchat to somewhere in the middle. We are willing to accept the trade off for the long-term benefits of putting friends first. Regrettably, we didn’t understand at the time that the biggest problem with our redesign wasn’t the frustration from influencers – it was the frustration from members of our community who felt like it was harder to communicate.”

Twitter

Updates To The Rules

Twitter has announced several new updates across three areas of its election integrity efforts, which include updates to its rules, detection and enforcement and product improvements.

For example, Twitter heard feedback that people think its rules about spam and fake accounts only cover common spam tactics like selling fake goods. So Twitter is updating and expanding its rules to better reflect how it identifies fake accounts and the types of inauthentic activity violate its guidelines.

As a result, Twitter may remove fake accounts engaged in a variety of malicious behaviors such as the use of stock or stolen avatar photos, the use of stolen or copied profile bios and the use of intentionally misleading profile information such as profile locations.

If Twitter is able to reliably attribute an account to an entity known to violate the Twitter Rules, action will be taken on additional accounts associated with it. This is especially the case for accounts that deliberately mimic or are intended to replace accounts previously suspended for violating the rules. And the Twitter Rules prohibit the distribution of hacked material that contains private information or trade secrets.

“We continue to enforce our rules against intentionally misleading election-related content. In August, we removed approximately 50 accounts misrepresenting themselves as members of various state Republican parties. We have also taken action on Tweets sharing media regarding elections and political issues with misleading or incorrect party affiliation information. We continue to partner closely with the RNC, DNC, and state election institutions to improve how we handle these issues,” said Twitter in an announcement. “In August, we removed 770 accounts engaging in coordinated behavior which appeared to originate in Iran. Our investigation into this activity continues, and we will share further updates on our findings with law enforcement, our industry peers, and the public.”

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