Social Media News | The Professor’s Pick

Facebook to introduce ‘dislike’ button

According to Facebook co-founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook will introduce the long-anticipated ‘dislike’ button.

In a Q&A session at Facebook’s Californian headquarters, Zuckerberg said that: “I think people have asked about the dislike button for many years. Today is a special day because today is the day I can say we’re working on it and shipping it”.

While Facebook has previously been reluctant to introduce the dislike feature, primarily as it doesn’t want users to “downvote” posts, it appears that it is now open to providing users with the ability to express a wider range of feelings.

Zuckerberg added: “What they really want is the ability to express empathy. Not every moment is a good moment”.

From an advertising point of view, the introduction of a dislike button is likely to encourage brands to think a bit harder about what they post on Facebook, hopefully leading to better quality content.

Social Media steps up efforts to support good causes and political donations

This week, it was revealed that Facebook is currently considering introducing an expiration date on profile pictures. This, it is hoped, will encourage more users to demonstrate support for good causes through a change of image. The new feature, which will start to roll-out over the next few months, will enable users to adopt a good cause profile picture that reverts to a standard image after a set period.

Also this week, Twitter announced that it is to partner with a mobile payment company to enable political donations to be made via tweets. The partnership with California-based Square will allow Twitter to accept online donations to verified US presidential candidates by clicking “Contribute” on a candidate’s badge. While Twitter will not take a percentage of the donations, contenders can pay for promotional tweets.

Twitter to allow all users to sell via tweets

Twitter is to expand the extent of its ‘buy’ button, allowing all users to sell items via their tweets.

The move is made possible due to Twitter’s partnership with payment processing company Stripe Inc, which has launched a new tool to connect retailers and brands that sell online and via mobile platforms.

The buy button lets shoppers purchase products and enter payment and shipping information without leaving the Twitter platform. Until now, only commercial retailers have had access to the functionality.

Periscope introduces landscape filming

Last week, it was announced that Periscope has now introduced landscape broadcasting. Until now users were forced to tilt to watch videos that had been filmed sideways.

The introduction of landscape mode to the latest iOS, Android and web-based versions of the service has been warmly welcomed by users who have been pressing for the update.

Twitter sued for privacy breaches

A class-action lawsuit has been filed against Twitter for replacing hyperlinks in direct messages with its own “t.co” short links. The practice, it is claimed, is an invasion of its users’ privacy, and violates both the Electronic Communications Privacy Act and the California Invasion of Privacy Act.

The US lawsuit is seeking millions of dollars in damages from Twitter.

According to the claimants, the system of replacing hyperlinks in people’s private messages is equivalent to reading private communications without permission. By intercepting and accessing the content of messages to change these links, it is claimed Twitter is guilty of “unlawful conduct”.

Twitter denies the claims stating that: “We believe these claims are meritless and we intend to fight them”.

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