Social Media News | The Professor’s Pick

Facebook revenue reached $10 billion in 2014

Facebook’s latest figures reveal that the social media giant had its first $10 billion year in 2014.

Other key stats:

  • Revenue for the full year 2014 was $12.47 billion, an increase of 58% year-over-year
  • Facebook now has 1.39 billion active monthly users
  • Mobile monthly active users total 1.19 billion
  • More than half a billion users only access Facebook via a mobile device
  • Mobile users spend 18hrs per month on Facebook
  • Video use on the platform increased 75% worldwide in 2014
  • Revenue from advertising reached $3.59 billion in Q4 of 2014, with mobile advertising revenue representing approximately 69% of this.

Commenting on the figures Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said: “We got a lot done in 2014. Our community continues to grow and we’re making progress towards connecting the world”.

Facebook changes its privacy policy

Last week Facebook changed its privacy policy to allow the harvesting of user information from any partner websites or apps. This is in addition to the data it already collects from a user’s Facebook account.

The move is designed to help advertisers better target users. As well as appearing in the Facebook News Feed, these ads will ‘follow’ users across the web and could appear on any website with which Facebook shares such information.

While Facebook does offer an ad preference tool, it does not allow users to fully opt-out of its advertising services. As such, the only way to remove these adverts from appearing is to install an ad blocker or delete your Facebook account.

With the changes now in force, simply by using Facebook, users are agreeing to the new T&Cs. However, Facebook is keen to stress that it does not: “share information that personally identifies you” such as your name or email address. If you want to find out more about the information Facebook holds about you, you can download a copy of your Facebook data from your general account settings.

Tumblr rolls out major-update

Popular blogging service Tumblr is making changes to its service to increase its appeal to serious writers. While the platform currently boasts 430 million active users, a substantial number of posts made on Tumblr are “throwaway content” such as celebrity quotes, animated GIFS, photographs of cats, etc.

By introducing a range of new writing tools, it seems that Tumblr is keen to attract more serious, long-form writers to the platform; bolstering its reachable user base. Commenting on the update a Tumblr spokesperson said: “Whatever you want to write — simple things, flashy things, handsome things, trashy things — now you can write the hell out of it”.

Snapchat launches original series in bid to become an entertainment destination

Following the launch of its new Discover media platform, Snapchat debuted its first original brand series last weekend.

‘Literally Can’t Even’, which features two best friends living in LA, runs in five-minute instalments and is only available for 24hrs, in line with the fleeting nature of all Snapchat content.

With the Discover feature enabling brands to publish their own original content on the app, Snapchat seems set to follow in the footsteps of content platforms such as Netflix and Amazon. Unfortunately, however, ‘Literally Can’t Even’ doesn’t appear to have gone down well with viewers and has received a number scathing reviews. SnapperHero, another original series featuring YouTube and Vine stars, is coming to Snapchat soon.

WhatsApp reveals users’ private profile photos

A 17-year-old security researcher has uncovered that popular messaging service WhatsApp is revealing private photographs to strangers. The bug is believed to be a consequence of the phone app not properly syncing with the new web interface. Currently, users can set their profile photo to private, however the bug allows people to get around this setting, as well as providing access to photos that have previously been deleted.

WhatsApp has been accused of failing to protect the privacy of its customers in the past, and is currently making strides towards greater security via increased encryption for users.

GlobalWebIndex presents its latest social networking report

The “ultimate data source for digital consumer insight”, GlobalWebIndex (GWI) runs the world’s largest market research study on digital consumers, helping businesses to make smarter marketing decisions. Looking at social networking behaviours and engagement levels across more than 30 global markets, GWIs latest quarterly report (Q4 2014) has now been released.

Key findings

  • Over two-thirds of online adults actively use social networks, with more than 40% connecting via mobiles and more than 20% via tablets
  • 16-34s are the biggest mobile networkers while 25-44s are furthest ahead for tablets
  • Internet users now spend an average of 1.72 hours per day on social networks
  • Adults typically have accounts on 5.54 networks and actively use 2.82 of them
  • Outside of China, Facebook is still the clear leader with 81% of adults using the site, however YouTube has more people visiting it each month (82%, vs. 73% for Facebook)
  • Inside China, Sina Weibo and Qzone dominate (with membership rates of 75% each) but large numbers are accessing global platforms such as Facebook and Twitter via apps or VPNs
  • Pinterest was the fastest growing social network in 2014 (with active users up by 97%), followed very closely by Tumblr (+95%)
  • Of the major networks, Facebook was the only one to see a decline in active usage (-9%)
  • Facebook is the most popular social app (41%), with its Messenger (27%) and WhatsApp (25%) tools leading in the mobile messaging space
  • Snapchat was the fastest growing app in 2014 (+57%)
  • More than a third of 16-19s are using Snapchat in the UK, Ireland and Sweden
  • 16-24s over-index the most for following celebrities, for FOMO (fear of missing out) and for finding content
  • 55-64s are ahead for using networks out of habit and because lots of their friends use them too

To find out more about the report go to: 

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