Social Media News | The Professor’s Pick

Facebook privacy hoax goes viral

A Facebook post that claims to protect users’ photos, videos and content has been exposed as a fake. The hoax message, which has been copied and pasted by thousands of users, demonstrates that many of us are still unclear about Facebook’s privacy settings.

Commenting on the hoax, which follows a similar ruse in 2012, a Facebook spokesman said: “We have noticed some statements that suggest otherwise and we wanted to take a moment to remind you of the facts – when you post things like photos to Facebook, we do not own them.” However, he went on to admit that Facebook does have the right to distribute and share user generated content, unless specifically forbidden to do so through the privacy settings.

Snapchat digital survey reveals that people like Snapchat ads.

According to a recent survey, Snapchat users have no problem receiving ads on the popular messaging service. The survey of 600 users, which was undertaken by global branding consultancy Millward Brown Digital, looked at ‘Brand Story’ and ‘Our Story’ type advertisements.

‘Brand Story’ ads, which take the form of 20-second videos, placed in a user’s updates, received a 44% approval rate. However, ‘Our Story’ ads, which combine advertisement sponsorship opportunities with user generated content are liked by an impressive 60% of Snapchat users.

With only 17% of people in the U.S reported to like generic smartphone advertisement, the survey is sure to prove of interest to advertisers. However a quick word of caution, the study was commissioned by Snapchat and so is likely to show more favourable results than any independent assessment. That said, with Snapchat raising $485.6 million in the latest round of funding – bringing its valuation to $10 billion according to some analysts – advertisers are sure to be paying close attention in 2015.

Twitter reveals YouTube rival video service

According to reports, information has emerged showing just how Twitter plans to exploit the power of online videos in 2015.

A new video advertising service, which will not support videos hosted on rival platforms such as YouTube will allow advertisers and users to post videos up to 10 minute long on Twitter. Only brands signed up to Twitter’s Amplify advertising service will be able to include ads in their videos.

Details of the new service, which was kept under wraps until now, was uncovered by a Twitter user who inadvertently accessed a restricted page. Video is set to become a key driver for Twitter in 2015 as it looks to boost user numbers following a somewhat disappointing end to 2014.

Twitter to launch ‘while you were away’ feature

In other Twitter news, the micro-blogging platform has started rolling out a new feature which collates posts users may have missed,’ to help them find relevant content. ‘While you were away’, which has been described as a “Facebook-style news feed” will use algorithms to highlight the posts it thinks will be of most interest to users. The feature is unlikely to be universally welcomed with Twitter stalwarts believing the manipulation of timelines to be irritating and unnecessary, appealing to investors and advertisers rather than users.

Zuckerberg launches Facebook book club

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg has started a Facebook book club which has attracted thousands of ‘likes’ to date. The ‘A Year of Book’ group is open to all users with the aim of reading a new book every week throughout 2015.

Zuckerberg, who takes on a new challenge every year said that the books chosen will emphasise learning about “different cultures, beliefs, histories and technologies”.

The first book selected is already temporarily out of stock on Amazon, demonstrating the influence on sales the book club is likely to have.


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