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What’s MGHappening in Social Media: Jul. 16, 2019

Facebook Logo

The Verge – Facebook is launching a new brand of experimental apps, releasing them under the “NPE Team, from Facebook” label. NPE stands for “new product experimentation” and will consist of new experiences across iOS, Android and the web, with a specific focus on consumer services. The new name keeps the project separated from Facebook proper, which the company said is intended to help set appropriate expectations with users that apps will change rapidly and may be shut down if they aren’t useful. Other major tech companies already have dedicated teams/apps focused on getting quick user feedback during testing, including Microsoft’s Garage group and Twitter’s twttr. (Full Story)

Digiday – Facebook is working to improve video monetization tools for publishers and creators, however there are still frustrations echoed by those groups regarding Creator Studio and its unreliability. Creator Studio has been available for almost a year, but still experiences periods of downtime that make it difficult to post and syndicate content. Additionally, there have been complaints where the scheduled videos did not go out even though the platform said they did, and instances where the performance of older content could not be tracked. The common consensus is that while many of the problems are minor on their own, the culmination of issues makes for a very buggy experience, which one user said should not even be out of beta. (Full Story)

CNBC – Mark Cuban has joined the growing list of influential figures, including President Trump and Fed Chairman Jerome Powell, who have criticized what Facebook is doing with the planned Libra cryptocurrency. “I’m not a big fan of what they’re doing there, I think it’s a big mistake,” remarked Cuban regarding the crypto. He went on to cite concerns about the danger of Libra on a global scale, especially in markets without a lot of “rule of law, government stability, or currency stability.” (Full Story)

Instagram Logo

Vox – Instagram is launching tests of two new features to help combat bullying on the platform: comment warnings and a restrict option. The comment warning will detect offensive or “borderline” content as a user is typing, and will then prompt them to reconsider before they post. In early testing, Instagram found that some people would undo their intended comment and share something less hurtful after seeing the warning, which is good news as that is largely the intent of this new feature. The second anti-bullying addition, called Restrict, will allow users to identify personal bullies without banning them (which is reportedly important among teens on the platform). Any comments made by the identified bullies will need to be approved by the account owner prior to them going live for everyone to see. The comments can also be declined or left in limbo where only the poster can see, should that be a user’s choice. (Full Story)

Twitter Logo

Mashable – Twitter will soon be testing a new feature that allows users to hide replies to specific tweets. Canadian users are first in line for the test, though all of twitter will be able to see tweets where the hide option is being used. When a specific reply is hidden, the user won’t be banned, nor will the reply disappear entirely, but it will become less visible. From there, anyone viewing the original tweet will need to tap a small icon on the tweet to bring up hidden replies. Twitter says that this test/feature addresses the fact that blocking or muting a user may not be enough to prevent other users from seeing bad tweets. (Full Story)

Snapchat Logo

The Verge – Snap has announced plans to roll out new Creator Shows on the Snapchat platform, featuring celebrities including Serena Williams, Arnold Schwarzenegger, and Kevin Hart, and creators like Emma Chamberlain, Loren Grey, and Rickey Thompson. The shows will consist of 10 three- to five-minute episodes per season and will start airing this summer on the Discover page. While still vertical video, Snap is calling these first-person shows a new format. The company shared that the average daily watch time for Snapchat Shows has tripled over the past year. Additionally, Snapchat is rolling out new updates for official accounts, adding a Highlights section where creators can add collections of photos and videos to Snapchat – something quite similar to the Highlights already available on Instagram. (Full Story)

Snapchat Highlights

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