Happy FriYAY! Another week, another heap of updates to share directly from the digital marketing and tech world.
In this week’s update: Facebook introduces a new multi-profile feature, Threads adds accessible account switching, TikTok tests integration of Google Search results, Twitter/X discontinues Circles, and a Canadian influencer goes viral for an “eye-opening” reason.
Let’s dive in.
Meta’s new multi-profile feature: Explore your passions and connect with precision on Facebook
After a year of experimentation, Meta has launched its new multi-profile feature, allowing users to create multiple Facebook profiles to cater to different interests and audiences. With this “Create another profile” option, users can build custom profiles for various aspects of their lives, maintaining separation and privacy.
You can create up to four personal profiles, each with a unique username and feed. This feature encourages users to share more about their diverse interests and engage with specific audiences. While this concept isn’t entirely new, Meta believes it can provide more precise organization and help users feel more comfortable sharing.
This move aligns with decreased personal posting on Facebook, with users opting for sharing content in DMs and smaller groups due to divisive content and a preference for more privacy. While having multiple profiles could facilitate selective sharing, it might require users to switch between profiles, which may not become a habitual behaviour for most. It could also invite negative behaviours like trolling via separate identities.
Meta is rolling out this feature globally, with some limitations on certain functionalities for additional profiles, such as Dating, Marketplace, Professional Mode, and payments, along with messaging restrictions. Whether this feature will encourage more personal updates remains to be seen, but Meta seems willing to explore options to increase user engagement.
Threads adds accessible account switching to mobile apps
Meta’s Twitter/X rival Threads recently introduced a much-awaited profile-switching feature on its mobile apps. Users can now easily switch between multiple accounts without the need to log out. By long-pressing on the profile icon in the bottom right, users can access the “Add profile” option to add a new profile, streamlining the process of switching between work and personal profiles.
Threads has been actively adding new features since its launch. Recently, it began testing full-text search capabilities in New Zealand and Australia, followed by a global launch of the search functionality. In just this month alone, Threads introduced features like enabling notifications for a specific post for 24 hours and the ability to quote posts on the web.
Micro-blogging competitors like Mastodon are also enhancing their platforms with new features to stay competitive. Mastodon’s latest version includes profile and post-search improvements, quick action suggestions in the search box, an upgraded web interface with better thread indicators and article previews, and a new Privacy and Reach settings tab.
TikTok tests integration of Google Search results
TikTok is testing a new feature incorporating Google Search into its in-app search results. Not currently available to all users, this feature displays a small box on TikTok’s search page, encouraging users to search for the same terms on Google. This move is part of TikTok’s efforts to expand its functionality and become a comprehensive online platform.
TikTok is also reportedly experimenting with integrating Wikipedia entries into its search results. The goal is to position TikTok as a one-stop destination for various online activities, moving beyond its reputation as a platform for viral dance content.
Including Google Search is noteworthy because it reflects a shift in internet usage among younger users. Google has observed that many young users are now turning to TikTok and Instagram for internet searches, changing the traditional behaviour of using Google for search, and this shift may affect Google’s position in the online search market.
Twitter/X discontinues Circles feature
Twitter/X has announced the discontinuation of its Circles feature, with it being “depreciated” on October 31st. This means that Twitter/X users can no longer restrict their posts to a select group of followers known as “Circles” or add new users to these curated lists. Instead, all future posts on Twitter/X will be accessible to your followers and the general public, whether professional updates or personal thoughts.
PSA: we’re disabling Circles by October 31.— Support (@Support) September 21, 2023
more info → https://t.co/sHY9l6SUFw
While users can still make their entire Twitter/X profiles private to limit access to their posts, there will be no option to filter which followers can see specific content selectively.
The fate of previous Circle-restricted posts remains uncertain. Ideally, these posts will remain restricted to the original set of users they were shared with. However, they could become public, exposing personal thoughts and comments to a broader audience.
Given this uncertainty, it may be advisable to consider deleting any Twitter/X posts you prefer to keep private, as relying solely on the platform’s privacy assurances can be risky.
Canadian ‘anti-glasses’ influencer goes viral
And lastly, in weird influencer news this week, Canadian wellness influencer Samantha Lotus has garnered attention for her viral claims that doctors who recommend glasses or contact lenses for bad eyesight are “lying.”
She asserts that she can teach people to heal their vision through “simple” and “holistic multidimensional healing” methods backed by science.
Lotus, a self-proclaimed holistic coach, was offering an $11 class to teach individuals with bad eyesight how to improve their vision. She told her followers that the need for glasses is a “lie” and that she had already healed her own eyesight. She offered to teach others how to address the “spiritual, emotional, mental, and physical reasons” behind their vision problems.
Her approach combines holistic methods, including Positive Psychology, CBT, Psychoneuroendoimmunology (PNEI), Metaphysics, Energetics, Nutrition, and Alternative Natural Medicine.
However, her claims have (naturally) attracted criticism and skepticism.
I guess it was only a matter of time before the anti-glasses grift became a thing?— mallory (she/her)💬 (@this_is_mallory) September 8, 2023
This community is so hellbent on having a contrarian opinion on every incredible scientific invention. pic.twitter.com/mDdFaTSiLi
Amidst the criticism, Lotus maintains that her class focuses on self-healing and includes advice on avoiding blue light, reducing screen time, specific eye and neck exercises, and incorporating particular nutrients into one’s diet as methods to improve eyesight.
The Canadian Association of Optometrists (CAO) has stated that no scientific evidence in peer-reviewed literature supports Lotus’ claims. They emphasize that eye care is individualized, and doctors of optometry undergo extensive education to provide professional eye care.
Lotus defended her background, citing her studies in psychology, sociology, naturopathic medicine, and training in anatomy, physiology, biology, pathology of disease, and iridology.
In response to the backlash, Lotus expressed confidence in her intentions and remained unfazed by the comments and media attention.
Are we finally getting the NYSNC reunion we deserve?! The anticipation is killing us!