Social Web Update 12.11.18
My weekly annotated summary of significant social web platform developments from the previous week, with links and carping marginalia as needed . . . Posted every Monday morning or thereabouts.
Love the Numbers
So here’s the bad news for the major social media platforms from Recode . . . “Facebook, Twitter and Snapchat are no longer adding new users in the United States. Facebook’s daily user base has been the same for the past three quarters. Twitter and Snapchat have both lost users in the U.S. or North America, respectively, in back-to-back quarters.”
And because the North American market generates more advertising revenue per user by far than other parts of the world “these companies need to figure out other ways to grow their advertising businesses.”
A long time complaint about Snapchat is the stinginess of the user data provided to advertisers. Perhaps seeing the numbers above, last week Snapchat announced “its integration with Comscore, adding measurement of U.S. traffic for the platform’s vertical video content. This deal marks the first time Snap has introduced third-party measurement for traffic on Snapchat Discover.”
In reporting on Instagram’s prototyping of a collaborative ‘Stories’ space just for users at a specific school, Josh Constine in TechCrunch worries that “School Stories could create a fun space for kids to share with their peers beyond the prying eyes of their parents or strangers, though they could also exacerbate teen culture issues around envy and exclusionary social scenes.” This may be true even if Instagram would manually review for instances of bullying, as it claims it will.
The venerable (in social web terms anyway) image-based discovery platform — what founder Ben Silberman calls a "catalogue of ideas" — is retrofitting itself to look a lot more like Instagram. In place of its traditional tile format dating from 2009, Pinterest will feature a single column of posts. The Verge adds that “Aside from the change in layout, the chronological feed still works more or less the same way as it did before. You can tap on a red ‘Save’ button below an image to save it to a board, or tap on the image directly to be linked out to a piece of content.”
Facebook’s answer to Match — Facebook Dating — is expanding from Columbia to Canada and Thailand and “adding a few new features to coincide with the launch, including the ability to re-review people you passed on and take a break by putting the service on pause, among other things.”
The long-awaited ‘unsend’ feature for messages on Facebook Messenger may soon be accessible . . . But when it does become available it apparently will only give you 10 minutes to delete the offending note.
LinkedIn has launched a new events feature for organizing meetings and other events. Mashable reports that “The feature is pretty similar to Facebook events. You create an event, fill in the relevant details such as the time, location, and a brief description. From there, you can invite people you're connected with on LinkedIn and share it in your feed.”