😎 Facebook just launched Ray Ban Stories. The smart glasses, which start at $299, allow you to snap photos and video, listen to music and take calls.
Finding an audience that trusts Facebook as a wearable capable of recording what people see, hear and say might be tricky. Of all the companies you would trust to wear on your face, how high on the list is Facebook?
But depending on your comfort level with Facebook, I find the possibility to share across platforms really interesting. Once you’ve taken photos and video — up to 30 videos or 500 photos — they go directly to a companion Android/iOS app. From there you can share to wherever your phone is set up to share, whether that’s Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp, Twitter, TikTok, Snapchat, Outlook and more.
For now, it’s a novelty following in the footsteps of Snap’s Spectacles and Google Glass. One critic even called them “an overpriced influencer toy.” But it’s an interesting space to keep watching as tech companies explore the future of computing.
✅ Instagram just shared a post around their verification process, including the following requirements:
Your account must represent a real person, registered business or entity.
Your account must be the unique presence of the person or business it represents. Notable entities (for example pets or publications) are also eligible.
Only one account per person or business may be verified, with exceptions for language-specific accounts.
Your account must be public and have a bio, profile photo and at least one post.
Your account must represent a well-known, highly searched-for person, brand or entity.
As part of the verification process, they also look at accounts featured in up to 5 news articles from a list of diverse outlets. Of course, none of this is a guarantee. The information is more of a loose guideline than an official blueprint for making verification happen.
🔵 Twitter is beta testing a version of Facebook Groups, or as they call them Communities. Like Groups, these are spaces for people to connect over shared interest. But there are some differences. Tweets posted in Communities are public and can be seen by anyone on Twitter, but only others within the Community can engage and participate in the discussion.
Communities will have moderators to make sure this thing doesn’t go off the rails, it will be the mods who will set and enforce the rules for a Community. The feature is still invite-only so I can’t say for sure but the concept of focused conversation around shared interests could be big for Twitter.
📲 Social Media State of the Union: TikTok has overtaken YouTube in downloads and watch time. You might have seen those headlines but that was just one detail from a new report: The Evolution of Social Media Apps from App Annie. It includes some interesting data and trends around social media apps which account for 44% of all time spent on mobile.
Here are some of the obvious and not so obvious highlights:
Video is fueling the growth of social media apps with live streaming video outpacing every other content format (chat, photo, produced video). It’s driven growth and revenue over the last four years. “Social apps that offer live streaming as a prominent feature account for $3 of every $4 spent in top 25 social apps in H1 2021.”
The in-app purchases that are fueling social media apps are tied to content creator “gifting” during livestreams. From Twitch “bits” to TikTok “coins,” virtual gifts sent to creators are creating a positive and lucrative feedback loop as creators give shout outs to the followers who gifted them.
As all the apps begin to look alike, the lines are blurring between social, photo, video and entertainment apps. TikTok tops the list for most app downloads in 2021 but YouTube still dominates the time spent list and also outperforms Netflix and every other entertainment and social app for consumer spend.
TL;DR: Prioritize video, live streaming and creators. It’s still too early to tell whether TikTok or YouTube will win the war for our attention. And until there’s a clear winner, yes, you still have to shoot portrait and landscape and short and long-form video.
🔥 Jessica Chastain would like you to know she heard your swoons and saw your clips and she is amused.
🎬 Does Hollywood still represent the be all end all for creators? This week’s headlines suggest it’s still a big draw:
Peloton’s Cody Rigsby just announced he’s joining the next season of Dancing With the Stars.
David Dobrik just signed a deal with Discovery+ to film a travel series starring himself and several Vlog Squad friends. The 10 episode Discovering David Dobrik airs later this year.
🚨 The LAPD is reportedly collecting social media data on every civilian they stop. Along with those efforts, in 2021 they invested in software called Media Sonar that helps the department “address a potential threat or incident before its occurrence.” Actually tracking criminals is an important job but there is so much potential for abuse and if you watched 2002’s Minority Report you know how this story goes. Spoiler alert: Not well.
⚖ Australian media companies need to carefully monitor and moderate comments on their Facebook posts or risk being held liable for defamatory comments, according to a new court ruling.
🤩 Reminder: the Met Gala is on Monday and this year it’s being live streamed on Twitter. It’s an interesting choice after having streamed on YouTube and Instagram. Either way, expect an increase of fashion pics on your feed next week.
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