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Social Media Buzz Weekly: Roundup of Social Media Updates

Welcome to Social Media Buzz Weekly, your weekly bulletin of the latest social media updates. With the social media landscape evolving with each passing day, it can be challenging to keep a tab on the rapid developments. Well, not anymore, as we have taken it upon ourselves to keep you abreast of every happening in the social media space.


So, without any further ado, let’s look at some of the most significant developments from the last week in the world of social media.


1. Twitter Expands Access to Twitter Blue, Announces New Incentives for Signing Up



Twitter has now expanded Twitter Blue access to Saudi Arabia, France, Germany, Italy, Portugal, and Spain, which will enable millions more Twitter users to potentially sign-up for a verification tick.



Twitter’s also looking to further incentivize Blue sign-up by offering revenue share for ads shown in reply threads. The idea here is that if users write interesting tweets, they would get compensated for the discussion they generate – but you need to be signed up to Twitter Blue to get it. Elon Musk hasn’t shared any further info on the potential revenue split or process at this stage.


2. TikTok Launches New Strikes-Based Penalty System for Repeat Offenders



TikTok is rolling out a new strikes-based system for account suspensions and penalties, in order to weed out repeat offenders in the app, as opposed to taking action on each individual case.



In order to impose stronger penalties, and provide more protection for users, TikTok’s new system will see users penalized based on their cumulative actions. TikTok says that its policy thresholds will vary depending on a violation’s potential to cause harm to our community members.


3. Twitter’s Cancelling Free Access to its API, Which Will Shut Down Hundreds of Apps



Twitter has announced that, as of February 9th, it’s cutting off free access to its API, which is the access point that many, many apps, bot accounts, and other tools used to function.



That means that a heap of Twitter analytics apps, management tools, schedulers, automated updates - a range of key info and insight options will soon cease to function. The announcement follows Twitter’s recent API change which cut off a heap of Twitter posting tools, in order, seemingly, to stop users from accessing the platform through a third-party UI.


4. Pinterest Focuses on Travel Inspiration and Education for Black History Month



Pinterest has kicked off a new ‘Find Your Routes’ Black Travel Hub initiative, which aims to highlight places that have strong connections to Black history, while also showcasing Black-owned businesses.



The Black Travel Hub will present a range of travel options, along with their history, with creators from the US, Colombia, Jamaica, Brazil, and more, all taking part in presenting their city.


5. TikTok Tests Reducing Music Options as Part of Ongoing Negotiations Over Music Usage Rights



TikTok is currently running a test among some users in Australia which will restrict their capacity to add music to their clips.



The idea is that TikTok’s looking to put a dollar value on the use of music in the app, as a bargaining chip in its future negotiations with music publishers. TikTok’s owner ByteDance has sought to negotiate lower payments on music usage within the app, arguing that music is not as crucial to the TikTok experience as publishers suggest.


6. Snapchat Outlines New Initiatives to Celebrate Black History Month



Snapchat has outlined its plans to celebrate Black History Month, including themed Spotlight challenges, new AR filters, and a new partnership to ensure optimal representation across its various features.



Snapchat’s launching a new set of Black History Month Spotlight Challenges, which will see over $40,000 awarded to creators for taking part in specific projects aligned with the event. Snapchat’s also launching a range of themed Lenses, created by Black artists. Moroever, it is teaming up with the Beauty in Inclusivity Association (BIIA), to ensure that there’s an optimal mix of representation and diversity across the app.


7. Twitter Cancels its Collaborative Tweets Experiment



Twitter short-lived ‘Co-Tweets’ experiment is no more, with the platform announcing an end to Co-Tweets effective immediately.



Launched in live testing in July last year, Co-Tweets enabled you to collaborate on a single tweet with another user, providing new opportunities for cross-promotional partnerships. The idea essentially stemmed from TikTok, where Duets have become a popular content option, which has prompted the addition of similar functionality on both Facebook and Instagram. Co-Tweets were Twitter’s version of the same – but amid the ongoing re-organization of the app, they’ll no longer be supported.


8. Instagram’s Founders Return with a New Social App



Instagram founders Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger are launching a new social app, though its initial focus will be more on content specifically, as opposed to social elements- at least in its early stages.



Called ‘Artifact’, the new app is designed to provide you with a curated news experience, based on your engagement and interests. The app opens to a feed of popular articles chosen from a curated list of publishers ranging from leading news organizations like the New York Times to small-scale blogs about niche topics. Tap on articles that interest you and Artifact will serve you similar posts and stories in the future, just as watching videos on TikTok’s For You page tunes its algorithm over time.


9. TikTok Outlines Programming for Black History Month



TikTok has announced its programming line-up for Black History Month, which will include its first-ever Visionary Voices list, as well as dedicated programming throughout February.



TikTok has chosen a group of Black creators to take part in a month-long showcase of their work. Participants have been chosen in three categories - Creators, Small Owned Businesses, and Industry Disruptors.


TikTok’s also hosting a #BlackTikTok in-app hub, where it will highlight inspiring stories from creators and Black-owned businesses, while it’s also looking to showcase music from Black creators, with a new #BlackMusic showcase.


10. TikTok Adds New Video Insights Element to Dig Deeper into Content Trends



TikTok has added a new Video Insights analytics element, which is now available within the Reporting section of TikTok Ads Manager.



Within the Reporting section of Ads Manager, you can now tap through to get specific insights about the performance of each of your uploaded clips. The new overview provides data on comparative ad performance (vs industry benchmarks), insight into how specific elements in your clips are resonating, audience breakdown insights, and more.


11. Twitter Outlines New Platform Rules Which Emphasize Reduced Reach, as Opposed to Suspensions



Twitter has now outlined how it will be enforcing its rules from now on, which includes less restrictive measures for some violations. The latest guidelines will see Twitter leaning more towards leaving content active in the app, but reducing its impact algorithmically if it breaks any rules.



This means a lot of tweets that would have previously been deemed violative will now remain in the app.


12. Instagram Rolls Out Inbox ‘Notes’ to More Regions



Instagram is expanding Notes access, with users in Europe and Japan now also able to add Notes within the Direct inbox in the app.



Notes are short posts, up to 60 characters long, which are displayed at the top of your IG inbox for 24 hours. Your connections can see and respond to your Notes in the app, providing an easy way to spark conversation and engagement in-stream.


13. Pinterest Announces New Video Partnership with Publisher Condé Nast



Pinterest has announced a new partnership with publisher Condé Nast which will see the lifestyle brand share exclusive content to the platform, including new video activations around major events, like New York Fashion Week.



Pinterest says that Vogue and Architectural Digest will produce over 160 exclusive videos ‘aligned with Pinterest’s key seasonal and cultural moments’, including Fashion Month in February, Wedding Season, Summer, and Back to School activations. The partnership could be a big win for Pinterest, helping to drive more engagement around two key areas for the app – wedding, and home upgrades.


14. Twitter Applies for US Licenses to Facilitate In-App Payments



Twitter has begun applying for regulatory licenses in US states, the next legal requirement for providing payment services in the app.



Payments, which Elon Musk has a long history in, could be another way for Twitter to generate revenue, by enabling transactions between users, from which it would then take a small percentage. Musk has repeatedly flagged his vision for payments as part of his broader push to make Twitter into an ‘everything app’, which would provide more functionality and usage benefits.


Wrapping Up

And that was a wrap of this week’s Social Media Buzz. We’ll be back next Monday with more news and updates for you from the social media world. Till then, stay tuned!


If you want to read more on the latest developments taking place in the social media space, take a look at ClickInsights’ Social Media Buzz, wherein we bring to you monthly reports on everything going on in social media, ranging from platform updates to policy changes that influence the way we market.


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