We’ve got that Friday feeling! Here’s what we’re chatting about today:
A fake news game, a petition for a Snapchat redesign, bad news for Twitter bots, plus, will advertisers think twice before spending their money on social media?
Advertisers are thinking twice when it comes to social media
It’s no secret that trust in what we read on social media is eroding — fake news, anyone?
In fact, the level of trust has plummeted so far, it’s causing big brands to think twice about where they spend their advertising dollars. Last week, Unilever’s chief marketing officer Keith Weed discussed the effect distrust has had on social media advertising. Weed even went so far to threaten to pull all ads from major platforms like Facebook and Google unless they take steps to filter out misinformation and abusive content.
Unilever alone spends over two million dollars per year in social ad content.
According to Johanna Blakely, managing director at the Norman Lear Center, platforms are now realizing that they need to take steps to regain the trust of their users. Not necessarily because of complaints from their user base, but because of advertiser threats and complaints.
So where will big advertisers turn to reach consumers? According to Edelman’s 2018 Trust Barometer, traditional media is seeing a welcome resurgence in trust.
New game based on fake news teaches players how to spot misinformation online
And speaking of fake news, say hello to Bad News.
It’s a game designed by members of the Cambridge Social Decision-Making Lab and media literacy group Drog to teach players about digital misinformation by turning them into fake news creators. Players start with a small-time Twitter account and slowly build followers by feeding their fear and anger, deflecting facts and confusing straightforward issues.
According to creators, the game is a way to “vaccinate” people against misinformation. “The idea is that once you’ve seen the tactics, and used them in the game, you build up resistance,” said Cambridge Social Decision-Making Lab director Sander van der Linden.
Change.org petition complains about Snapchat’s redesign
If you’ve been on social media at all within the past couple weeks, you’ll know that people are not happy with Snapchat’s new look.
Users have gone so far as to start a Change.org petition to ask the company to reverse its controversial update, which people say makes the app more difficult to use. Snapchat has finally responded to the petition, promising to make a few more changes to the Friends and Discover section in order to address user complaints.
Snapchat has stood in support of the update, maintaining that people just need time to get used to it. Beginning soon on iOS and on Android in the coming weeks, Snapchat will introduce tabs in the Friends section and in Discover, which it says will make it easier for users to find the Stories they want.
Bad news for Twitter bots
Twitter has banned bulk tweeting and duplicate accounts this week as part of a crackdown on spam and political propaganda bots.
Developers are now banned from using any system that simultaneously posts “identical or substantially similar” tweets from multiple accounts at once, or makes actions like liking, retweeting, and following across multiple accounts at once. Twitter will remove these options from its own TweetDeck app, and third-party developers have until March 23rd to comply.
Instead of sending the same tweet from multiple accounts, users will have to send one tweet and have multiple accounts retweet it, but they can’t use “bulk, aggressive, or very high-volume automated retweeting.”
Is anyone exempt from Twitter’s new rules? The answer is yes — weather, emergency, or other public service announcements of broad community interest will still be able to send the same tweet from multiple accounts. For the full list of changes coming to Twitter, check out this blog post.
David Harbour does the Hopper dance with penguins
After a challenge on Twitter that escalated dramatically, David Harbour was promised by Greenpeace that he could go and dance with penguins in the Antarctic. The end result of his journey did not disappoint:
here's a petition to create the largest protected area in the world.@Greenpeace has 1M sigs.
let's give them 1.8.
1 for every proposed square km
for the 'guins.
here's me dancing with them,
they don't have netflix.@Greenpeace ? pic.twitter.com/jjLBk2XOIr
— David Harbour (@DavidKHarbour) February 20, 2018
And obviously, the Internet rejoiced:
my face hurts from smiling https://t.co/qC000VFPwz
— Amanda Sales (@Scamandalous) February 20, 2018
this is a mood pic.twitter.com/tPDX5vtPvM
— nicole (@ITSNlCOLE) February 20, 2018
Tessa Virtue, Scott Moir Free Dance at Winter Olympics | Pyeongchang 2018
Did you miss it? Catch Tessa and Scott’s final Olympic performance — get your tissues ready.