12 Headlines from the Week of June 29, 2018

POLICY, PRIVACY & POLITICS

Ringing in the data proving to be more challenging (WSJ)

Wednesday’s edition of the Wall Street Journal reported on the challenges Facebook is having in tracking where data to third party app developers went after it left the platform. A major issue is that many of the app developers have gone out of business or are otherwise MIA and aren’t responding to Facebook’s information requests. Facebook also doesn’t have legal authority to compel those developers to cooperate.

Facebook reverses ban on cryptocurrency ads (Mobile Marketer)

Facebook eased its ban on cryptocurrency marketing from January with a new set of rules allowing preapproved advertisers to promote the digital money. Crypto-advertisers will now need to fill out a form, providing details such as whether they hold required licenses and regulatory circulation, so Facebook can assess their eligibility for advertising on the platform. 

Facebook tweaks political ads policy (Digiday)

Facebook to launch a news publisher-specific section of its ads archive called Promoted News, which will carry the articles publishers have paid to promote that fall under what Facebook considers political topics.

 

NEW FUNCTIONALITY

Instagram introduces group video calls, new explore layout (Social Media Today)

Announced in May, Instagram released its new group video calling option, along with an updated Explore layout and new AR tools this week. Up to four friends can join. Interesting insight: more than 375 million of the app’s billion users now interact via messaging each month, while Instagram’s research shows that 85% of people’s messages within the app are shared with the same three friends.

 

NEWS YOU CAN USE

Instagram offers new guide to creating and uploading IGTV content (Social Media Today)

Just a few days after its launch in Vegas, Instagram released a guide on Wednesday on how to create content for its IGTV platform. It includes tips, apps and accessories you can consider to help improve your IGTV videos.

Facebook adds keyword ‘Snooze’ option to help user avoid spoilers (Social Media Today)

Don’t want to see who got the final rose on “The Bachelor”? Facebook just began testing a feature that can help you avoid spoilers or, basically, any topic you don’t want to see in your News Feed for up to 30 days. 

Facebook releases new SDK Code setup simplifying their app installation (Adweek)

Any marketer who has implemented SDK code to track mobile app events will like this: it’s getting simpler. Facebook writes their new tool “simplifies the setup process by enabling marketers to add, modify and remove events with a simple point-and-click tool. Marketers no longer need to ask their developers to write code, release a new version of their app and wait for people to update—a process that could take weeks, if not months.”

 

OTHER HEADLINES

Facebook expands auto-translation tools in Messenger (TechCrunch)

Facebook Messenger will now offer optional auto-translation of English to Spanish and vice-versa for all users in the United States and Mexico. Now when users receive a message that is different from their default language, Messenger’s AI assistant M will ask if they want it translated. All future messages in that thread will be auto-translated unless a user turns it off. Facebook plans to bring the feature to more language pairs and countries soon. Facebook began offering translation technology for News Feed posts and comments in 2011.

Oculus launches Oculus TV (Social Media Today)

First IGTV, now Facebook-owned Oculus is getting into the television arena with the launching of a new VR TV viewing app. Projections are that Oculus will ship around a million new units this year with the holiday shopping season seeing the biggest push.

Facebook expands its Messenger Kids app beyond the U.S. to Canada and Peru (Venture Beat)

Facebook is expanding its controversial Messenger Kids app beyond the U.S. and into Canada and Peru, the company announced today. Messenger Kids will now also be made available in Spanish and French in all three of its available markets. Messenger Kids originally launched for kids aged 6 to 12 in the U.S. last December.

Facebook patents system that can use your phone’s mic to monitor TV habits (New York Times)

System would allow Facebook to identify what adults and children are watching based on ambient noise The New York Times Op-Ed piece reveals other interesting patent technology under the Facebook roof.

Jif scoops Neil Patrick Harris for Facebook Live comedy show (Mobile Marketer)

From our Ohio backyard, J.M. Smucker peanut butter brand Jif announced a partnership with actor Neil Patrick Harris to promote its new Jif Power Ups snacks via a news release. Harris hosted “The Parenting Struggle is Real…Funny” on Facebook Live on June 26.