It’s time to kick off your weekend right! Here’s what all the buzz was about this week: tentree’s Earth Week celebration, Facebook’s Q1 earnings and how the platform’s privacy shortcomings have affected Canadians, and will Instagram remove ‘likes’?
Finally, we’re topping things off with some Friday Fun.
tentree Uses Instagram to Plant Trees in Honor of Earth Week
To celebrate Earth Day, tentree launched a week-long Instagram initiative using likes to help plant trees.
The company will plant a tree in Indonesia for every ten likes on the post above, through a partnership with Eden Reforestation Projects.
What started as a goal of 500,000 trees has quickly become a goal of 1 million! The post currently has over 14 million likes and counting… such a worthy cause, and something everyone should get behind.
Facebook Data Leak: How Canadians Were Affected
While it had already been reported that more than 620,000 Canadians had their data improperly shared in connection to the Cambridge Analytica scandal, we now have a more detailed and thorough look at the actual numbers, province by province.
The result of a joint investigation launched a year ago by the Privacy Commissioner of Canada and the Information and Privacy Commissioner for British Columbia, “…the privacy watchdogs have provided new details about Canadian Facebook users impacted by ‘major shortcomings in the social media giant’s privacy practices.’”
The good news? As a result of the report, Federal Privacy Commissioner Daniel Therrien plans to take Facebook to federal court to force compliance in addressing privacy shortcomings, and has revived Therrien’s campaign for legislative change to strengthen Canada’s privacy laws.
No comment from Facebook yet but according to Canadian officials, the company “refuses to implement recommendations to address deficiencies.”
Facebook Reserves $3 Billion for FTC Fine
More on Facebook this week — this time concerning the social network’s Q1 report.
Despite their mistreatment of user data, Facebook reached 2.38 billion monthly users in Q1, up 2.5 percent from 2.32 billion in Q4 2018. Earnings per share totaled $0.85 in contrast to the projected EPS of $1.63 because Facebook has reportedly set aside $3 billion for the potential FTC fine the company is facing.
According to its earning release, Facebook wrote they anticipate an FTC fine between $3 billion and $5 billion. No word yet as to when the related investigation will be completed.
Instagram Tests Removing ‘Likes’
In an effort to help users focus on the content they share rather than the number of ‘likes’ they generate, Instagram is reportedly testing a version of the app where ‘like counts’ are hidden.
Instagram is testing hiding like count from audiences,
as stated in the app: "We want your followers to focus on what you share, not how many likes your posts get" pic.twitter.com/MN7woHowVN
— Jane Manchun Wong (@wongmjane) April 18, 2019
Screenshots shared by researcher Jane Manchun Wong reveal Instagram feed posts that no longer show exact like counts. Instead, you see that a post was liked by a few named handles “and others.”
In a statement, an Instagram spokesperson denies the speculation, saying the feature is not being tested “at the moment,” but that “exploring ways to reduce pressure on Instagram is something we’re always thinking about.”
For those that believe likes (or lack thereof) equate to social pressure, the change could be a welcome one and potentially make the app a little healthier.
Clare O’Connor documented her father’s epic response this week when he found out she was considering purchasing the much talked about (and often mocked) Peloton bike. Check out the thread below for more LOLs like this one: “After-tax income” is the daddest phrase to ever dad in the history of dad’s.”
I told my mother I was considering buying a Peloton and…received this email minutes later from my father, who I should really start enlisting if I need to drag someone. pic.twitter.com/95CWiYwvk8
— Clare O'Connor (@Clare_OC) April 10, 2019