POLICY, PRIVACY & POLITICS
The “System Failed:” Facebook’s Outgoing Policy Chief Takes the Fall for Smear Tactics (Fortune)
A week back, a bombshell New York Times story severely tarnished the image of Facebook CEO Sheryl Sandberg by detailing the company’s deflection and smear tactics in the face of scandals over Russian disinformation and Cambridge Analytica’s misuse of people’s data. Now another Facebooker has taken the fall for hiring Definers, the conservative outfit in question. TechCrunch reported on an internal memo by Facebook’s outgoing public policy chief, Elliot Schrage, in which he takes responsibility for hiring Definers to “positively distinguish us from competitors” — but not to pump out fake news.
Facebook’s Newest Feature Tells Users to Get Off Facebook (Fortune)
Facebook is rolling out a new feature that tracks and tells users exactly how much time they spend on its app, TechCrunch reports. This also comes a week after the company rolled out a parallel time tracker for Instagram. Last year, Facebook cited academic studies and internal research in a blog post that stated, “In general, when people spend a lot of time passively consuming information — reading but not interacting with people — they report feeling worse afterward.”
NEWS YOU CAN USE
Facebook Releases New Report on Customer Friction Points, and How to Resolve Them (Social Media Today)
According to Facebook, 80% of consumers say that the experience a business provides is just as crucial as its goods or services. That’s a key stat to keep in mind, and the focus of a new report from Facebook which looks at customer friction points along the path to purchase. For the report, Facebook collaborated with Boston Consulting Group to analyze friction points, and their associated costs, across industries in the Asia Pacific region.
Big Changes Coming to Facebook’s Messaging Platform (Social Media Today)
As of January 1st, Facebook Pages will need to have successfully been approved for subscription messaging permissions – if not, they won’t be able to send the free messaging type called ‘non-promotional subscription messaging’.
Facebook is shutting down its connected-TV ad network (Digiday)
Facebook’s effort to extend its ad business to the television screen is running into problems. Two years after Facebook extended its Audience Network ad network to the connected-TV market, Facebook is shutting down the connected-TV side of its ad network and will stop selling ads.
Instagram Rolls Out More On-Platform Shopping Options for the Holidays (Social Media Today)
With 500 million daily active users, 80% of whom follow at least one business account, and with the main focus of the platform being on visual elements, it makes sense for Instagram to look to capitalize on its eCommerce potential. Instagram has been developing its Shopping Tags feature for some time, which it recently expanded to Instagram Stories. And now, ahead of the holiday shopping season, Instagram has announced three more shopping tools to help businesses capitalize on buyer intent and interest.
Facebook Rolls Out News Feed Algorithm Update to Disincentivize Controversial Content (Social Media Today)
In a long letter addressing Facebook’s progress in tackling the platform’s problems with user safety and the spread of misinformation, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has outlined a new News Feed algorithm update which aims to limit the incentive for Pages to share sensationalized content.