My weekly annotated summary of significant social web platform developments from the previous week, with links and carping marginalia as needed . . . Posted every Monday morning or thereabouts.
Love the Numbers
Two charts today, from Statista's latest research on the top Twitter and Instagram accounts worldwide as of June 2018. Given Donald Trump's extreme narcissism, he'll be disappointed to find that @realDonaldTrump doesn't even make the top ten list of Twitter accounts. Even more galling for the pathological liar-in-chief must be the fact that @barackobama comes in third, just behind Katy Perry and Justin Bieber. Topping the Instagram chart is Selena Gomez, with Christiano Ronaldo a distant second.
Facebook keeps working away at trying to make the News Feed a user's happy place. The latest tweak being rolled out to a few users is called 'Keyword Snooze' and it "gives people the option to temporarily hide posts by keywords, are pulled directly from text in that post. If you choose to “snooze” a keyword, you won’t see posts in your News Feed containing that exact word or phrase from any person, Page or Group for 30 days."
The 2018 watchword for a number of social platforms is transparency, especially when it comes to advertising. Last week Facebook introduced a couple of changes meant to make the source of Pages and: ads less opaque: By viewing an 'Info and Ads' tab on any Page "You can nowsee the ads a Page is running across Facebook, Instagram, Messenger and our partner network, even if those ads aren’t shown to you . . . You can also learn more about Pages, even if they don’t advertise. For example, you can see any recent name changes and the date the Page was created."
Rumour has it that Snapchat, which only recently opened itself up to developers, may allow developers to create games for a gaming platform within the app as early as this coming fall.
Keeping in lock step with its parent, Instagram announced that users can now add music to their 'Stories' to create a veritable soundtrack of your life. Tapping a new music icon in when adding a photo or video to 'Stories' opens a library of thousands of songs. You can "search for a specific song, browse by mood, genre or what’s popular and tap the play button to hear a preview. When you’ve selected your song, you can fast-forward and rewind through the track to choose the exact part that fits your story. . . .You can also choose a song before capturing a video. When you open the camera, swipe to the new “Music” option under the record button. Search for a song, select the exact part you want, and record a video as the song plays in the background."
Chris Welch at The Verge reports, with some annoyance, that Instagram may be "testing a persistent Stories bar that follows you down the feed." It's only a test, but Welch adds: "(B)etween the obnoxious neon-orange IGTV notifications in the main app that I can’t turn off and now this, I’m not thrilled. Let people use the app how they want."
LinkedIn has enabled the translations of posts written in a different language in the LinkedIn Feed: "Posts that are in a different language than you speak will now show a “See Translation” button within the LinkedIn Feed, the recent activity section on someone’s profile, and the post detail page."
Those QR codes that seemed to disappear for a time are making a comeback of sorts. LinkedIn for one has added a LinkedIn QR code . . . so that "the next time you’re at an industry event and meet someone that you want to keep chatting with, open the LinkedIn app and scan their QR code to connect and stay in touch" or at least read up on his or her profile before setting up that coffee meeting!