Content on Facebook is being censored in Thailand in accordance with what the government views as acceptable. The nation doesn't allow people to criticize the royal family. In cases where high-profile users have posted "controversial" content, their posts are being blocked.
Instagram has found a new place to include ads. The Facebook-owned social network is testing ads that'll display between Stories, which also means they're skippable. Users will begin seeing the ads in the coming weeks, according to Instagram. The ads are under 15 seconds.
4G infrastructure is now available in almost every country and companies have started pushing out the new 5G connectivity. While it will take a while before public gets 5G network, Intel has now announced its 5G modem at the Consumer Electronics Show 2017 in Las Vegas.
Facebook's guidelines pertaining to nudity have been a point of debate in the recent past. The social network was criticized for removing a post featuring the historic "napalm girl" photo from the Vietnam War and now it isn't happy with an image of a nude Neptune statue.
To more completely understand its users, Facebook purchases data about them. It's been doing this for years, but a recent ProPublica report highlights the practice. Facebook pays for information from six data partners in the US, including Experian and TransUnion.
Tweet editing could be on the way, but the social network needs to figure out how it should be implemented. To close out the year, CEO Jack Dorsey polled users on what features they want to see added in 2017. Editable tweets was a common and well received request.
Twitter accounts managed by Sony were hacked by an unknown entity earlier this morning and proceeded to falsely tweet about Britney Spears' death. Since the posts came from verified accounts, some people temporarily believed the singer was indeed dead.
To more thoroughly monitor who is visiting the United States, the government has begun requesting social media information from those using the visa waiver program. Travelers are asked to provide their Facebook, Google+, Instagram, YouTube, and LinkedIn usernames.
Government requests for Facebook account data were up 27% during the first half of the year, according to the network's Global Government Requests Report. The majority of the 59,229 requests were from the US. 56% of the time, a gag order was included.
In another move away from reverse chronological listings, Twitter will pull up search results by relevance. It hopes to improve the search function by showing potentially more relevant information rather than just listing every tweet with a matching keyword.
Facebook is going to put more shareable moments at the top of user news feeds. The messages encourage users to post about the topic. Facebook's current moment is for the holidays, but future ones will cover other cultural moments, similar to Google's Doodles.
Facebook is expanding its livestreaming feature with audio-only streams, which have been introduced with content from the BBC and others. The other initial partners for the feature include Harper Collins, LBC radio, and authors Adam Grant and Brit Bennett.
Recording videos for Instagram Stories no longer requires holding down the camera button. An update for that part of the app allows you to record by tapping the button a single time, which is bound to be more convenient in many use cases. Stickers are also included.
Twitter users who rely on the social network as a source of news may soon gain another way to learn about the day's biggest stories. A breaking news alert feature is in testing and is being trialed with users. Many people were exposed to the alerts for the first time yesterday.
Text status updates on Facebook can now come with color backgrounds. The social network added support for a number of background colors, though it only allows them to be used on text posts. You cannot apply the colors when links, images, or videos are involved.
Social networks like Facebook and Twitter could be fined exorbitant amounts of money in Germany if they don't fully address fake news. A legislative proposal in the country includes a €500,000 fine for every instance of fake news that isn't quickly removed.
Twitter will consider an update to direct messages that will add support for encrypted content to that part of the app. CEO Jack Dorsey says the request for "secret, burn-after-reading" direct messages is something that's reasonable and will be considered internally.
Twitter was working on a unique messaging-style app as recently as September 2016, but it decided to cancel the project, reports BuzzFeed News. The app was going to be targeted at emerging markets and it was based on collections of tweets and "instant messages."
Facebook has more clearly laid out a plan for dealing with fake news on the network. It announced on Thursday that it'll make reporting easier and it'll work with third-party fact-checking agencies to verify content is fake. Disputed content will be marked as such.
There are now 600 million active users on Instagram, Facebook's photo and video-centric social network. Of those, 100 million joined in the past six months and Instagram's user count has doubled in the past two years. This growth comes alongside the introduction of new features.