Category: Author: Danielle Azar
Several announcements were made in the field of social media this week. The one that garnered the most attention was Instagram’s, who really ought to fire their legal department or whoever writes their guidelines over the uproar they caused. First,though, let’s have the good news.
YouTube “Gangham Style”
Earlier today, Korean pop star Psy’s popular music video “Gangham Style” was the first video ever to reach 1 billion views on YouTube. By now everyone has heard the song, seen the dance, or heard the reference, but a billion views is a pretty big deal. Formerly, the most viewed video was Justin Bieber’s “Baby” with 803 million, but that video was released in 2010 while Psy’s was hasn’t even been out for 6 months. YouTube employees even stated in the company blog that the “velocity of popularity for Psy’s outlandish video is unprecedented”. If you haven’t seen the video, crawl out from under that rock and take a look:
Facebook to charge $1 per stalker message
Facebook announced yesterday that it will charge users a one-time $1 fee to message a stranger as much as you want. Currently, if you send a message to someone you are not Facebook friends with, the message goes to their ‘other” section of their inbox and gets ignored. In paying the fee, Facebook will make sure your message goes to the real inbox that actually gets read. Facebook says they’re imposing the fee to decrease spam, but if spam usually goes to an inbox that isn’t seen, I don’t see how this is a solution to anything. Plus, getting someone to accept your Facebook friend request is easy; how many friends do you have on Facebook that you’ve never met? I have quite a few. This seems like a perfect situation for a stalker to spam your inbox with creepy messages that they know you’ll actually read. Additionally, how will celebrity accounts handle this? Many a rabid fan will pay much more than a dollar to contact their favorite celeb. Will Facebook charge more to message a celebrity account? Stay tuned.
Instagram wants to rob you
“You agree that a business or other entity may pay us to display your username, likeness, photos (along with any associated metadata), and/or actions you take, in connection with paid or sponsored content or promotions, without any compensation to you.” (Mashable)
Obviously, this caused an uproar in the online community with people and companies closing their Instagram accounts or vowing to close them before the January 19th date that this policy gets implemented. National Geographic closed their account and several celebrities and internet groups are threatening to boycott. After the meltdown, Instagram scrambled to rephrase the policy but failed to put it’s users at ease with the ambiguous new wording. Finally, they gave up and decided to revert back to their former privacy policies which have been in place since 2010: “Because of the feedback we have heard from you, we are reverting this advertising section to the original version that has been in effect since we launched the service in October 2010. You can see the updated terms here.” It looks like the users won this round, but seeing that Facebook owns the brand, it will only be a matter of time before they try something like this again. I think they learned their lesson where subtly is concerned though.