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The #SocialSkim – Week of November 19th

This week in social media:

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Instagram Adds New Ways To Shop

Ahead of the Black Friday and Cyber Monday Madness, Instagram has announced three new ways to shop on the platform.

The First Addition is ‘Shopping Collections’. Here is what they had to say about this feature:

Now when you come across a must-have item, save it to your Shopping collection to revisit it later. When you tap a product tag in Stories or Feed, tap the Save icon in the bottom right corner to save it to your Shopping collection. Just like existing collections, you can access your Shopping collection from your profile. It’s an easy way to keep your wish list up-to-date and store creative gift ideas for the holidays.

Instagram Shopping Collections

The next addition allows users to show on business profiles. Here was their statement regarding this new feature:

We’re also testing a redesign of the Shop tab on business profiles so you can quickly view all the products featured in their shopping posts. When you visit a business profile, tap on the ‘Shop’ button to see their products, such as the item name, price, and the post featuring the item. It’s a great way to browse all the products from a brand you love on Instagram, in one place.


The last feature is ‘Shopping in Feed videos’. Here is how Instagram describes this:

You can now shop in videos from your favorite brands. When you see a video in Feed from a brand you follow, tap the shopping icon in the bottom left corner to reveal the featured products and learn more about them.

Instagram hopes to better leverage their 500 million daily active users with these new features. According to their team, 80% of these users follow at least one business account.

Instagram Releases Usage Dashboard

While this was announced quite some time ago, they have finally rolled out the feature. As described in a previous version of the Social Skim, this feature will allow users to monitor their activity through a dashboard on the platform.

Instagram usage insights dashboard

Some of the features included in this new release will be an ability to pause notifications, and a display of the time spent on the platform.

Facebook Cracks Down On ‘Controversial’ Content

Facebook announced that it has updated its Algorithms to ‘Disincentivize’ sensationalized content. Facebook CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, explained the problem in the following way:

“One of the biggest issues social networks face is that, when left unchecked, people will engage disproportionately with more sensationalist and provocative content. This is not a new phenomenon. It is widespread on cable news today and has been a staple of tabloids for more than a century. At scale it can undermine the quality of public discourse and lead to polarization. In our case, it can also degrade the quality of our services.”

They aim to greatly tamper down the dissemination of this controversial content. Mark specifically talked users who approach the line Facebook sets on nudity.

“For example, photos close to the line of nudity, like with revealing clothing or sexually suggestive positions, got more engagement on average before we changed the distribution curve to discourage this. The same goes for posts that don’t come within our definition of hate speech but are still offensive.”

Mark went on to describe how they plan to tackle this issue and released the following charts depicting their plan:

“Our research suggests that no matter where we draw the lines for what is allowed, as a piece of content gets close to that line, people will engage with it more on average — even when they tell us afterwards they don’t like the content. This is a basic incentive problem that we can address by penalizing borderline content so it gets less distribution and engagement. By making the distribution curve look like the graph below where distribution declines as content gets more sensational, people are disincentivized from creating provocative content that is as close to the line as possible.”

Facebook News feed distributionFacebook News Feed distribution


Facebook Releases ‘Unsend’ On Messenger

You may remember that just a few months ago users described getting messages in their inbox from Facebook executives which were then inexplicably deleted. Facebook then announced that soon, all users would be able to do this. Staying true to their word, Facebook has just released an ‘unsend’ option for Messenger. Facebook Messenger unsend screenshots

According to Facebook, users will now be able to remove messages they have sent within 10 minutes of sending.

Twitter Rolls Out New Discovery Feature

Twitter has launched new updates to its explore section. The company hopes to help users find more relevant articles by separating news into specific sections.  Sections will include things like Sports, TV, Politics, etc.

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Google Releases New Options For Google My Business

Google aims to take advantage of the recent surge in nearby business searches by making it easier to connect with local businesses. According to their team:

“Every month, [we] connect people to businesses nearby more than 9 billion times, including over 1 billion phone calls and 3 billion direction requests to stores.”

The new features will make it easier for business to add to their profiles, and control what searchers see. Additionally, it will make it easier for business to showcase their business across their breadth of apps. Here is the description of their new ‘Google Posts Tool’

“With a press of the new Post button in the app, you can upload a photo, create an offer or event and add it right to your Business Profile on Google. You can also manage your business information on Google from the Profile tab and watch your edits appear seamlessly across Search and Maps.”



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