This week in social media platform changes

  1. Twitter introduces a quality filter, which factors out “low quality content” like harassing and abusive language, and keeps content from people you follow and accounts you interact with. The update also includes the ability to limit your notifications to followers only.
  2. Facebook begins rolling out “Live With,” the capability for two-person Facebook Live broadcasts. The functionality would be a visual “two-way,” a split screen conversation between two parties. Right now the functionality is available only if both parties are verified and using the Mentions app, but it will expand to non-verified accounts this fall.
  3. Apple is rumored to be developing a video sharing app to add to iOS, potentially linking social platforms more tightly into the structure of iPhones and other Apple devices. This app, which looks to be a video version of iMessage, would be a direct competitor to existing social video platforms like Facebook, YouTube and Snapchat.
  4. Another incoming threat to Facebook: Youtube is working on a new set of features tentatively titled “Backstage,” creates a news feed on YouTube.com where users can post and share photos, posts, links, polls and videos. YouTube channels can post content as well, for users to share and comment. This is rumored to launch by the end of the year.
  5. A good tip from Social Media Today: Force Facebook to turn off the algorithm, by setting your feed to show “Most Recent” over “Top Stories.” To do this on desktop, bookmark “https://www.facebook.com/?sk=h_chr” instead of the facebook.com URL.
  6. A new Facebook app called “Lifestage” turns bios into video profiles. Here’s the cool factor: The app is only for people 21 and under, and is built specifically for high schoolers to learn more about their classmates.
  7. Another new app, this time from a former Facebook employee: “Alively” is meant to make it easier to live stream video to a select group of friends.
  8. WhatsApp announces it will share “limited amounts” of data with Facebook, including a user’s phone number. This will open up Facebook and Instagram to use that information for ad targeting, and has got privacy experts (and the FTC) talking.
  9. Facebook expands its Audience Network suite of ad products to offer “header bidding,” which can be used to competitively place ads on large publishers’ Instant Articles.
  10. Twitter adds a DM button for publishers’ websites, allowing people to send a direct message to a Twitter account with just one click from the site.
  11. Pinterest acquired Instapaper, which it will leave as a standalone app. However, Pinterest will use Instapaper’s behavioral data to improve its targeting capabilities.
  12. Facebook is testing an opt-in sound option for auto-play videos. Please do not panic (this is just a test for now).
  13. Facebook introduces new rules for Messenger bots – they can now only message someone within 24 hours of that person interacting with the bot. This change is meant to reduce bot spam.
  14. Facebook has updated its video-ad creating tool Slideshow to make it easier and cheaper to create video ads.
  15. Facebook announced that they will begin to enforce branded content policy infractions starting next Thursday, 9/1.
    Branded content is defined as “content that features third party products, brands, or sponsors that are different from the Page owner,” and requires Pages and Profiles to use a new tagging feature on these posts that explicitly acknowledges a sponsor or brand at the top of a post.
  16. New study from eMarketer: US Snapchat users will increase by double-digits in 2016 and 2017 (In 2016, 28.3% of US smartphone users will actively use Snapchat, and more than half of millennial smartphone users).
  17. Facebook suspends "Domain Insights," which provided info on how a site’s externally hosted content performed when users shared it on Facebook.