After a stressful morning frantically refreshing half a dozen tabs to get BrightonSEO tickets, I’m pleased to say that eventually, we got some! Hopefully you did do, April’s conference is going to be a good one, trust me, I know it.
For this week’s hype I’ll be looking at Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat. Yep, Snapchat are still battling away for social media success.
Twitter has to stop and decide what one of their features actually means
Say what now? Twitter are pausing the verification process after it became apparent that users were “confusing ID verification with endorsement”. At the moment it seems like Twitter just can’t catch a break, with them having to state that verification was always intended as a way to authenticate identity and voice, but unfortunately it’s become a symbol of importance.
This is another example of where something is wrong with the platform but Twitter have stepped in too late to start fixing it. Even the General Manager of Twitter’s Consumer Product and Engineering group, Ed Ho, admitted that they’d been too late on stepping in.
How will Twitter make effective changes to the verification process? And will anyone potentially lose their verified status?
All the characters
If you were one of the lucky few with 280 characters, I hate to break it to you, but now everyone can tweet as many mini essays as their heart desires. Unless you’re tweeting in Japanese, Korean, or Chinese, as these tweets will continue under the 140 character limit.
Last week as the change rolled out, it’s likely you were inundated with tweets along the lines of “I have so many characters to use now, I must write the longest sentence I can think of just to make use of all this extra space even though it’s not necessary at all and it’s probably annoying people.”
Yeah, there were a lot of those types of tweet last week, but hopefully as the novelty wears off, the additional characters will simply be a bonus when you need to say something really important. Twitter chats, for example, are going to benefit hugely from these extra characters, as participants will be able to tweet the appropriate hashtag without having to worry about condensing their answers too much.
Bloggers everywhere pay attention, this one’s for you. We all know how unforgiving Instagram’s algorithm can be, and it so often seems that despite following accounts that you love and adore, you never see their content. Well, Instagram’s currently testing a new feature which could help things along. Or might make it worse. It’s all trial and error at the moment.
Instagram are testing the ability for users to follow a hashtag, as well as specific accounts. So instead of hunting down all the beauty bloggers you can possibly find, you should be able to see all their content by simply following the #bbloggers hashtag, for example.
In theory, this sounds like a good idea, it should make it easier to keep up to date with posts you love. However, I think the only way this will work is by Instagram using their algorithm to show you the ‘best’ posts of the hashtag you’ve chosen. So unfortunately, it looks like the algorithm is here to stay, and we won’t be getting back a chronological feed any time soon.
Rumour has it…
…that Snapchat will be debuting a redesign of the app on December 4th. Why? Because unless you’re a teen, apparently the app is too hard to use. CEO Evan Spiegel wants to make the app easier to use, presumably so that they match up with Instagram’s user friendliness and can keep hold of the user’s they’ve got on the platform.
There will also be a new feed called ‘Our Stories’ featuring crowd sourced content from users around the world. Think events like concerts and sports games, these will appear here in a endless Facebook style feed, whilst all your friend’s activity will be grouped together in a different feed. This is great as it’s giving you the option to either just view your friend’s content, or see videos from those you don’t know, but is it going to give Snapchat the boost it needs, or will current power users dislike the change?