This week in social media news, it’s all about Instagram. Here’s the scoop: Instagram adds a feature to make users pause when posting offensive captions, adds Layouts for Instagram Stories, bans branded content for certain products and introduces Brand Collabs Manager for select Instagram users. Also, over 267 million Facebook users’ personal info was compromised in an online database.
Earlier this year, Instagram introduced a feature that notified users when their comments may be offensive. They are now rolling out a similar feature for captions that will appear in the feed.
Instagram introduced the feature in a blog on their “progress on leading the fight against online bullying.”
When the AI detects a caption that might be offensive, users will get a notification saying, “This caption looks similar to others that have been reported.” Then users have the option to edit the caption, learn more or share anyways.
The hope is that by notifying users of potentially offensive captions, they will take a second to pause and think about their words. It also gives users a better idea of what Instagram’s guidelines are and when they are about to break them.
The platform says the feature will start rolling out to select countries first and then globally in the coming months.
Instagram launched a new feature called Layouts, letting users upload multiple photos for the same Story post. Up to six photos to be exact.
People already use external apps and tricks to do the same thing, so this move makes sense.
This may cause some problems for companies whose whole business is based off of providing this feature. But still, the feature is limited and other apps offer more creative approaches to posting multiple photos in one Story.
While Facebook and Instagram don’t allow advertisements for vaping, tobacco products or weapons, they did let influencers promote these products. But now they have closed the loophole.
Vaping, tobacco and weapon brands were using branded content from influencers as a way to advertise their products on the social media platforms. Users would see a “paid partnership with” tag on the post, but it was still effectively an ad for these items.
“Across the Facebook company, we are updating our policies to include clearer rules for the paid promotion of certain goods and services such as vaping, tobacco, alcohol and diet supplements,” Instagram said in an announcement.
They also said that branded content that promotes alcohol and diet supplements will require special restrictions. Instagram says these policies will go into effect next year.
In a blog post, Instagram says they want to “help creators turn their passion into a living.” So they are testing some new tools.
The tool was previously only available to Facebook creators but now they are opening it up to a select group of Instagram creators. Collabs Manager will let creators share insights and engagement with brands to help them find partners.
“Creators in Brand Collabs Manager can also search for like-minded brands looking to partner on content creation. They can source new deals, manage partnerships, and automatically share insights with them (before this, many creators could only send brands screenshots of their analytics),” Instagram said.
It also gives the brands access to insights on posts they are tagged in as branded content.
In another report from this week, over 267 million Facebook users had their personal data (name, Facebook ID, phone number) exposed in a public database.
As reported by Business Insider, the database was available to anyone who tried to access it on a public forum for about two weeks. The database was taken down, but some users could be targeted by spam messages or other scams.
A Facebook rep said, “We are looking into this issue, but believe this is likely information obtained before changes we made in the past few years to better protect people’s information.” This means that the phone numbers listed on the database would be more than 18 months old.
Facebook is urging users to change their privacy settings so that only friends can see their posts and to take them out of any search engine results.
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