Facebook Working on a Teen Messaging App Called ‘Talk’: Report

Facebook Working on a Teen Messaging App Called 'Talk': Report

App will allow parents to monitor who their children are in contact with
The app, called Talk, cannot be searched by general public
The app is expected to be for those who are 13-years-old and above
In a bid to protect vulnerable teenagers from online bullying and exploitation, Facebook is reportedly launching a new messaging app that will allow parents to monitor who their children are in contact with.

The app, called Talk, cannot be searched by general public but just by the teens who use it and will be closed to strangers who are looking to take advantage of teenagers on the Internet.

According to the website The Information, a software code was found in the main app that revealed signs of new parental controls that would set the app apart from Facebook’s Messenger app.

The code said, “Talk is a messaging app where you fully control the contacts and your child uses the Talk app to chat with you in Messenger.”


The app is expected to be for those who are 13-years-old and above and will not require the user to have a Facebook profile.

Recently, The Australian newspaper reported that the social network can help advertisers target users as young as 14.

While the parental controls in the new messaging app may turn some teens off due to limitations on their freedom on the social media, the service may be helpful to parents who are worried about their inability to monitor to whom their kids talk to online.


WhatsApp Starts Allowing Sharing of All File Types on Android, iPhone, Windows Phone: Reports

WhatsApp Starts Allowing Sharing of All File Types on Android, iPhone, Windows Phone: Reports

Users in Kuwait and Sri Lanka are seeing the support for all file type
The roll out has happened only to select users
WhatsApp will roll out support to everyone soon
WhatsApp has long been used as a medium to share photos, videos, and even Word docs. And for those files that weren’t supported on WhatsApp, users tend to go the long route by uploading them first on the cloud, and then sharing the link for download. There are several other workarounds, including third-party apps, to get your unsupported file from one sender to another, but it appears WhatsApp no longer wants you to use those. The company is said to be testing support for all types of file transfers (including archives) on Android, iPhone, and Windows Phone with a limited number of users, removing any hindrance of file sharing on WhatsApp.

WABetaInfo spotted this roll out, and claims that it’s a phased one. While some users in countries like India, Japan, Kuwait, Sri Lanka have reported that the support has arrived, there are several other users that do not see it still. However, WhatsApp can be expected to roll this feature out to everyone in the due course of time. The file sharing limit is at 128MB on iOS, 64MB on Web, and 100MB on Android, WABetaInfo reports.This new feature will now allow you to share video in a wide variety of formats, MP3 songs, or even APK files for that matter on WhatsApp. As of now, it’s now certain what type of file-checking system WhatsApp has put into place to prevent transfer of malicious or booby-trapped files. The other neat addition noted by the tipster is that with the new sharing feature, WhatsApp also allows you to send uncompressed photos and videos without compromising on resolution, but the ceiling limit is too low for high-quality video clips of sufficient length. Presumably, this cap has been enforced to not overwhelm WhatsApp’s servers with huge files.
WhatsApp is also tipped to be working on a recall feature that allows you to undo a message sent to someone, and is also working on bringing the new Status feature to WhatsApp Web.


Facebook Launches Online Civil Courage Initiative in the UK

Facebook Launches Online Civil Courage Initiative in the UK


  • Facebook will launch the Online Civil Courage Initiative in the UK
  • Looks to train and fund local organizations to combat extremist content
  • EU said that social networks have improved in removing hate content

Facebook is launching a UK programme to train and fund local organizations to combat extremist material online, as Internet companies attempt to clamp down on hate speech and violent content on their services.

Facebook, which outlined new efforts to remove extremist and terrorism content from its social media platform last week, will launch the Online Civil Courage Initiative in the UK on Friday, the company said in a statement.

The new initiative will train non-governmental organizations to help them monitor and respond to extremist content and create a dedicated support desk so they can communicate directly with Facebook, the company said.

“There is no place for hate or violence on Facebook,” said Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook’s chief operating officer. “We use technology like AI to find and remove terrorist propaganda, and we have teams of counterterrorism experts and reviewers around the world working to keep extremist content off our platform.”

The British government has stepped up attacks on Silicon Valley Internet companies for not acting quickly enough to take down extremist online propaganda and fostering “safe places” where extremists can breed following a string of attacks in recent months in London and Manchester.


Facebook, Alphabet Inc’s Google and Twitter have responded by saying they have made heavy investments and employed thousands of people to take down hate speech and violent content over the past two years. Security analysts say the efforts have dramatically reduced the use of these platforms for jihadist recruitment efforts, although more work needs to be done.

Prime Minister Theresa May has sought to enlist British public opinion to force the US Internet players to work more closely with the government rather than proposing new legislation or policies to assert greater control over the web.

Earlier this week, May urged fellow European Union leaders at a meeting in Brussels to join her in putting pressure on tech companies to ‘rid terrorist material from the internet in all our languages’.

She called for the Internet companies to shift from reactively removing content when they are notified of it, towards greater use of automatic detection and removal tools – and ultimately preventing it from appearing on their platforms in the first place.


Do You Know What it Feels Like to Get Hacked?

Do You Know What It Feels Like To Get Hacked? | Social Media Today

Hopefully your answers is “no”, and the intention of this blog is to keep you cyber safe in 2017.

Remember the hack of the Ashley Madison site? The top 3 passwords used on that site were “123456”, “12345” and “password”.

While there are no guarantees that malicious actors won’t get to your information, the following tips will decrease the probability of having your personal information hacked.

Let’s do some cyber maintenance. In addition to changing your passwords, learn other ways to make your cyber presence safer.

1. Have Complicated, Unique, Difficult-To-Crack Passwords

Hate changing your passwords for your social media, online banking, Amazon.com and other online accounts? So do I. But having someone invade your privacy, social channels, or even financial information is a lot worse.

A good solution to create strong passwords (and track them at the same time) is to sign up for a password storage tool. 1Password carries a yearly fee, and I’ve also heard good things about a free tool called LastPass.

All you need to do, once you have such a tool, is to create one really complex password and remember it. Then you can let the tool auto-generate all your other long and tricky passwords, which you won’t need to remember.

2. Never Reuse a Password

Don’t use the same password or slightly modify it to use it on multiple accounts.

Make each password unique, with a mix of upper and lower case letters, numbers, special characters – at least 9 characters, ideally more.

3. Update Your Passwords Regularly

Change your passwords periodically (at least every 6-12 months). While having a really difficult password is the number one way to protect your accounts, changing your password can’t hurt.

4. Prevent “Dictionary Attacks”

Don’t use dictionary words, your pet’s name, your college or any other words that have an obvious correlation to you as a person. These are easy to find, even just via Google, and so-called “dictionary attacks” – which are extremely common and simple – can crack those passwords in no time.

NOTE: Personally, I also discourage publishing your birthday on LinkedIn or Facebook as this date is a crucial detail to cracking and taking over your (online) identity; especially in the USA where birth date and social security number ARE your identity.

5. Keep Your Security and Privacy Settings Current

Facebook, LinkedIn and other social media channels occasionally change their privacy options, which is easy to miss (or dismiss) as such updates are not particularly interesting.

For a safe 2017, visit your social channels and review your privacy and notification settings. While you’re there, disconnect access for apps you no longer use.

6. Enable Two-Factor-Authentication

Something often dismissed as too complicated is two-step-verification.

Most social platforms, banks and other accounts now provide this as an option – here’s how it works:

  • In addition to your password, every time you sign in, you get a text message or app notification with a code that you need to enter before you get access to your account.
  • You’ll be asked to specify your trusted device(s) to receive the code, e.g. your iPhone or iPad, so only you have access.

7. Don’t Store Passwords in Your Browser

I know, it seems convenient but hackers feel the same way.

Browser attacks are very common – here’s some more information on common threats by Kaspersky.

8. Have a Security Program Installed

You need a virus protection program at a minimum, and many of these now come with privacy packages to help you in case you do get hacked.

Here’s a suggestion for 10 virus protection programs. Also consider a service that alerts you to invasions into your personal information, like changes in your credit report. One option is Lifelock.

9. Install Software Updates

Don’t dally when it comes to installing updates to your applications, operating system or website. While I admit that I sometimes wait a few days when a new OS update comes out so that the main bugs can be fixed first, I never wait for more than a week.

10. Be Suspicious of URLs Before You Click

Phishing is generally an attempt to get users to click on a malicious URL that will upload a virus if you do.

Never click on a URL sent by your bank, PayPal or other account that requires you to sign in.

Often, malicious actors will steal your password that way, or upload a virus. Instead, go to the site directly and log-in from there to check on any message.

Also, be suspicious about the senders of any message you receive via email or social media. Sometimes when I see a shortened link, I ask the sender to give me the URL to look it up myself or I pass.



[Source:- Socialmediatoday]

Facebook’s Testing Out a New Tool to Help You Connect with Like-Minded Users

Facebook’s Testing Out a New Tool to Help You Connect with Like-Minded Users | Social Media Today

Facebook’s always looking to boost sharing and interaction on the platform – as The Social Network has noted previously:

Our top priority is keeping you connected to the people, places and things you want to be connected to — starting with the people you are friends with on Facebook.”

Not only does this encourage more engagement (which is a crucial measure for social platform success), but more sharing means more data, and more data means better ad targeting. Facebook needs to facilitate connection in order to fuel their whole business model.

Which is why their latest test makes sense.

According to TechCrunch, Facebook’s rolling out a new “Discover People” option which will enable users to connect with others who are interested in similar things as they are, including upcoming events, people who work at the same company or even those who simply live nearby. The new feature was initially tested in Australia and New Zealand but it’s now in the process of being rolled out more widely.

The new option will be available within the options menu (the three lines) – some users will have access already.

Once selected, you’re prompted to update your profile bio and photo to ensure it’s accurate and up to date. Below that, you’re shown a list of all the events for which you’ve registered an interest in attending – when you click into any of these, you’re shown a listing of other people who will be heading along, and you can click onto any profile for more information.

As you can see, clicking on a profile will show you not only who each attendee is, but also any things you have in common with them, helping facilitate connection.

And as noted, in addition to events, you can also see a listing of work colleagues and people who live in the same area, further adding to the connective capacity of the tool.

It’s an interesting option, and it certainly adds something to the Facebook mix – but is connecting with strangers something Facebook users will warm to?

In the case of events – particularly business related functions – the tool makes some sense, and LinkedIn actually offers similar in their new platform prompts, introduced as part of their recent redesign.



[Source:- Socialmediatoday]


Pinterest Announces Search Ads to Help Businesses Tap Into User Interests

Pinterest Announces Search Ads to Help Businesses Tap Into User Interests | Social Media Today

In their latest effort to transform their platform into a fully-fledged e-commerce machine, Pinterest has announced a new search ads offering, giving marketers the chance to tap into the more than two billion searches conducted on the platform every month.

Pinterest Announces Search Ads to Help Businesses Tap Into User Interests | Social Media TodayOf course, two billion, in the wider scheme of things, is not much – Facebook sees 1.5 billion searches per day – but what’s most interesting to note about Pinterest is the reason why people use it, what inspires people to search for Pins.

You see, what Pinterest lacks in volume, it makes up for in intent. As highlighted by this slide from the 2016 Mary Meeker Internet Trends report, Pinterest has surged ahead of other social platforms in terms of purchase intent and shopping potential.

So while Pinners may not be searching as much, when they do search, they’re doing so with an intent to buy – in fact, Pinterest’s own research has shown that 93% of active Pinners use the platform to plan for purchases, while 87% have purchased something because of Pinterest.

The reach may be smaller, but the potential is still significant.

Pinterest’s search ads function much as you’d expect – when a user conducts a search for a key term (or key terms) you’ve targeted, your Promoted Pins show up, similar to how you would use Google search ads.

The new system will also work in a similar structure to other search offerings:

We’re rolling out a full suite of features, including Keyword and Shopping Campaigns that are shown in search results, along with powerful new targeting and reporting options.” 

Pinterest also notes that the majority of their two billion monthly searches are for products and services, while 97% of their top searches are non-branded, providing expanded opportunity for businesses to reach browsing buyers.

Given user behavior, the addition of search ads is a logical move for Pinterest – though the platform has seen some criticism of late for moving to slow to implement new ad options. Pinterest has been working to improve this, rolling out a range of new tools in the past twelve months, including improved buyable pins, advanced image search capabilities, remarketing and custom audience tools, video Pins and an entirely re-designed mobile app experience.

Documents obtained by TechCrunch in late 2015 showed that Pinterest’s aim is to be generating more than $2.8 billion in revenue by 2018, and they still have some way to go before reaching that goal, with CEO Ben Silberman recently confirming that their 2016 revenue would be in the vicinity of $300 million.

Given their stated goal, the platform will need to roll out a heap more tools and updates this year, though they do have some impressive features in the works, including advanced image recognition and virtual placement tools.

Search is another addition to this, and while it may seem small, it could be a big winner for your business.



[Source:- Socialmediatoday]

YouTube Testing New In-App Chat Function to Boost Social Activity

Image result for YouTube Testing New In-App Chat Function to Boost Social ActivityGoogle has never fared particularly well in social.

This was highlighted earlier in the week when the search giant announced a new update for Google+ – which reminded many that Google+ actually does still exist. Yet, despite their various attempts and failures in trying to tap into the social realm, that hasn’t stopped them from trying. I mean, really, they can’t – social platforms are continually cutting into their core business, with more and more discovery activity being conducted with social apps, a trend that only looks set to grow.

That same impetus appears to be behind their latest shot at social functionality, with Google-owned YouTube testing a new in-app messaging platform which enables users to share their thoughts and comments about YouTube content on YouTube – not somewhere else.

It’s pretty straight-forward – you watch a cool video on YouTube and you can immediately share it with your friends, so long as they also have the YouTube app installed. And of course, a lot of people do have the YouTube app on their devices – millions of iOS users have downloaded the app and it’s included on Android by default.

It makes sense, right? Now that it’s easier to share YouTube content directly, within the app itself, more people will do that than click on the Facebook or Twitter button and go share it over there. Right?

This is the same flawed approach Google has repeatedly taken in social, that if you give people an improved or streamlined experience, they’ll use that instead. But they won’t.

Why? Because their friends are on Facebook already. Adding a new chat experience means people need to re-align how they do things, where they share, how they get others involved. And most just won’t bother.

This is the same problem with Google’s new Allo messaging app – yes, it’s good looking and it has cool features like Google Assistant built in, but most people have already established their networks of friends on Messenger and WhatsApp. In order for them to switch to Allo, they’d need to convince all of those friends to also come across in order to make it worth their while, which ultimately means Allo likely won’t see any significant take-up, despite being an arguably more advanced and better messaging platform.

Google+ was the same – its systems may have been better, more advanced, but it offered no key differentiation from the existing options outside of that, which meant users felt no real compulsion to switch across. Everything they cared about was already on Facebook.

Of course, that’s not to say a new option can’t come in – Snapchat’s been able to take audience share from the established players by offering something users can’t get anywhere else, cool new features and tools that differentiate it from the pack and appeal to audiences looking for an alternative. But that differentiation is key.

So, yeah, YouTube might soon have a new messaging system, and it looks okay, functional. But I doubt you’ll see a big enough migration of users across to this option to make it a serious marketing consideration. Maybe, as you build up YouTube subscribers, you could use this to help spread the word. But then again, you’re probably better off using the other platforms where you have established connections and communities, as encouraging more action on those networks will produce greater return in increased reach.

If YouTube’s able to add something new to the process, some new messaging tools or features that make users want to check it out, the option could be something, but right now, in test phase, it looks like another Google social attempt that will be cool to know about, might even have some interesting quirks and benefits. But probably won’t become a major challenger in the space.



[Source:- Socialmediatoday]

3 Ways to Maximize Your Content Reach on LinkedIn

3 Ways to Maximize Your Content Reach on LinkedIn | Social Media Today

Do you publish long-form content on LinkedIn? Are you looking for ways to get more views and engagement with your posts?

LinkedIn recently released its list of “top voices” from 2016, and in the process, they also shared what made those bloggers so successful on the platform.

As per LinkedIn:

“When we compare these authors to all members writing in 2016, the Top Voices have received, on average, 64x more comments, 52x more likes, and 24x more shares on their articles. That viral activity on their writing led to an average of 73x more views from LinkedIn members than typical pieces, and a huge growth in followers.” 

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again – in today’s marketplace, your content is your currency. Creating great content and then sharing it online is how you “purchase” the time, attention and interest of potential customers. It’s also how you build the critical “Know, Like and Trust” elements that are key to every successful sale and business relationship.

Remember, anyone can claim authority – creating great content that demonstrates your expertise, and helps others solve a pressing problem or reach a specific goal, is the real key to success in online sales and marketing.

Here are three specific tips that LinkedIn says can help set apart your content from the rest on the network.

1. Global Reach, Specific Topics

The beauty of publishing on LinkedIn is that it’s the place where your ideal customers and clients in the global marketplace are already hanging out, looking for news, online training, resources, vendors, employees and more.

But among that global group, there are some specific, regional trends of note, in terms of audience interests.

As explained by LinkedIn:

“In the USA, writers tend to focus on entrepreneurship and innovation. In France, the economy and macroeconomics drive readership. India cares about branding and advertising; Brazil favors anything that’s current.”

Such trends can help you better target your content to maximize performance within your target market.

But aside from those more specific, regional trends, LinkedIn did note one consistent theme:

“…across the world, the same formula worked to develop an audience: Consistency, depth and an authentic desire to create conversations (not just content).”

2. Facilitate Engagement

If you’ve nailed your topic with a well written post targeted at your ideal audience, the true secret to generating big reach on the platform lies in everything else you do to set up your posts, including timing, engagement and follow through.

“The Top Voices made 10x more replies to comments on their articles than did the average LinkedIn writer” 

Along with responding as quickly as possible to the likes, shares and comments your articles receive, you can also use other social media channels and your email list to drive traffic to your posts.

One of my favorite tactics is to also use LinkedIn itself – I leverage third party automation tools like LinMailPro to send a personalized, 1-on-1 note to targeted LinkedIn connections with a link to the post.

As long as your message is sincere, and your content useful to the connections you’re sending it to, you’ll get almost zero complaints from your connections when promoting your content via 1-on-1 LinkedIn messages.

3. Let LinkedIn Know

Another tip, which comes direct from LinkedIn, is to promote your LinkedIn post on Twitter and tag LinkedIn’s editorial team.

This can be a simple, “one liner” about your post, highlighting it to [email protected] to make them aware of your content.

A lot of people tag LinkedIn’s editors, so it’s not a guaranteed path to increased exposure, but it can help alert the relevant people, which, in turn, could see your post featured on LinkedIn’s Pulse platform.

Speed + Engagement = Going Viral on LinkedIn

When you do this – send traffic to your own LinkedIn posts, be it via LinkedIn messages, your email list or other social media channels – LinkedIn takes notice.

The faster your post picks up views and the more engagement that happens in a short time frame, the more likely it is LinkedIn will be alerted to that activity and decide to promote your post in more places on the platform.

Once that happens, watch out – your views and reach can increase massively through that additional exposure.



[Source:- Socialmediatoday]


Visual Communication: The Next Step in Marketing [Infographic]

If you haven’t already heard, visuals can play a big part in boosting the performance of your marketing messages.

We’ve seen this most notably with the rise of video, with Cisco predicting that up to 82% of all consumer Internet traffic will be video by 2020. Facebook predicts that the News Feed will be “mostly video” by 2019, content with images sees up to a 94% increase in page views versus content without – all the available data points towards visuals being key.

As technology advances, we gravitate towards the mediums that best enable us to share our experiences. Visuals do that, so it’s worth including images and considering the role visuals play in your outreach efforts.

To add some more perspective to this, Creately have put together this new infographic of key image stats and trends.



[Source:- Socialmediatoday]

Siri vs Google Assistant: The Battle of the Smartphone Assistants [Infographic]

Siri vs Google Assistant: The Battle of the Smartphone Assistants [Infographic] | Social Media Today

Virtual assistants are set to become a much bigger part of our every day process in 2017 and beyond. Already, Amazon’s Echo and Google Home are changing the way we interact around the home, and newer tools like Google Assistant and Facebook’s Messenger Bots are looking to expand that capacity to more of our everyday interactions.

Indeed, Google reported last year that 20% of mobile searches are now voice queries, underlining the shift. This is not just an advance in technology, this a whole new user behavior, one the next generation will grow up with, making it even more ubiquitous.

But right now, the option is growing, the uses cases are only just starting to take shape. So which of the current leaders in mobile personal assistants perform better – Google Assistant or Apple’s Siri?



[Source:- socialmediatoday]