07 Sep Spark Bites: Big Changes For Social Media Users
From Twitter to Spotify, September is the time of change. This week’s Spark Bites has the scoop on WhatsApp’s venture into business messaging, YouTube fundraising for nonprofits, and more social media updates!
- Twitter will start enforcing rules around “issue ads” in the US by September 30th. This will be implemented to improve the health of the platform and rid the feed of ne’er-do-wells looking to influence US political elections. While news publishers who report on elections are exempt from this policy, advertisers will have to get their ad certified by Twitter before it goes out. Will fake news be a thing of the past?
- Speaking of Twitter and politics, a bug has been making it appear as if your friends are liking tweets they haven’t, including Trump’s! Yikes. Luckily the bug seems confined to the timeline and not your actual archive of likes. The bug has affected other accounts besides the president’s, so don’t believe everything you tweet.
- Ever wish your replies on Twitter looked like a Facebook message? If so, congratulations, because your wish has come true! The goal of Twitter’s newest update is to make replies flow more like a conversation in order to make it easier to follow. The social network is also experimenting with status updates to let you know when your favorite (or not-so-favorite) user is online.
- Hey where’d my tweet go? Last week, tweets auto-posted from Twitter to Facebook were mysteriously disappearing. This glitch came after Twitter axed the automatic cross-posting on Facebook as a result of the former’s crackdown on APIs. The tweets have since been restored, but say goodbye to getting your opinion out on two platforms with one click.
- Spectacles are making a comeback! Snapchat has launched Spectacles version 2.0, which is already on the market for a cool $199. The main draw for these Spectacles is their updated look. You can now take a video of your coffee with your glasses and look stylish while doing it.
- Need some shoes to go with your new Spectacles? Late last month Snapchat partnered with Adidas and Darkstore to pre-release a new style of the Falcon W shoe. Previously Snapchat has partnered with celebrities to sell products through filters and lenses. Adidas, however, created a show called Fashion 5 Ways on the platform to sell the shoe. Snapchat prides itself on how it can integrate the brand and product experiences with technology consumers already use. This could be the start of combining sales with a show on the app.
- As if online shopping wasn’t addicting enough! Instagram is reportedly transitioning into e-commerce which means you can buy that cool shirt you saw without even leaving the app. This is important for advertisers because Instagram provides a huge advantage—knowing what people like. This venture is still in the development stages and is shrouded in rumours and uncertainty. For now my wallet is happy but my closest hopes this comes out ASAP!
- If you’ve signed into your LinkedIn recently, you may have noticed an update that allows you to personalize your feed via hashtags. This feature is being gradually rolled out to users on the platform and hopes to engage people with content they actually like. #Nice
- YouTube isn’t just for challenge videos and makeup guru drama anymore. They recently launched a new set of fundraising tools that enables creators and registered non-profits to directly link to fundraising campaigns from their videos. On the videos using these fundraising tools, the total funds raised will be displayed and viewers will be able to donate in real time. Talk about social good!
- You might start receiving WhatsApp messages from your favorite brands! WhatsApp launched its business app earlier this year, but this month it rolled out the API for larger businesses. This is a significant departure from what WhatsApp is primarily known for, chatting with friends and family. What businesses can do is buy Facebook ads that bring customers into WhatsApp conversations they can respond to. This will be an easier way to allow businesses to respond to customer inquiries, or provide them with other information they’ve requested. If you’re a business and you’re interested in working with WhatsApp, you’ll have to apply directly on the WhatsApp website.
- Spotify is changing the music game in more ways than you think! For the past year the company has been making deals with dozens of small independent artists. This allows the artist to get on the streaming service and bypass the big evil record labels. This is a big deal—literally—because it allows artists to have ownership of their recordings and leaves them free to license their songs to other streaming companies. Looks like the music industry is in for some changes.
Thanks for coming on this ride and catching up on all the latest updates in the social media world. Check back next week for more!