View profile

a surprising truth revealed by Instagram

Geekout Newsletter for Social Media Managers
Issue #87 • View online
*Read this newsletter on the web for the best experience*
Hello, Geekout friends!
Welcome to your weekly geeky briefing of everything NEW in the world of social.
Kicking things of this week:
And… This is worth reading!
Boost your visibility on Instagram with these smart tips from Later.com.
✨ 5 Instagram SEO tips to boost your discoverability. Reveal Tips [ad]
____
🔥 GEEKOUT HOT 5
  1. TikTok stars invited to private White House war briefing [FULL STORY]
  2. Controversial UK Online Safety Bill published [MORE DETAILS]
  3. Instagram revealed it’s getting NFT features soon [GET MINTED]
  4. TikTok confirmed expansion of TikTok Stories test [MORE STORIES] 
  5. Instagram rolled out new safety tools for parents [NEW TOOLS]
____
Shall we take a quick spin around everything else worth knowing about this week? 
Go on then. If you insist…!
Instagram made social media managers very happy with this platform update… Twitter Spaces confirmed test of its new audio clipping tool… You can now schedule publishing of new TikTok’s uploaded on desktop.
Facebook’s Ray Ban Smart Glasses got new features and colour combinations… Twitter’s Close Friends-like feature may be close to launching… Snapchat is working on a new Communities feature… Meta announced much-needed parental controls for its Quest VR devices.
____
📊 USEFUL INSIGHTS | 7 Key Customer Care Expectations Impacting Social Media Success in 2022
Did you know: More than 60% of consumers *don’t* feel they receive excellent customer service on social media? Discover how to sharpen up your social engagement strategy with this new research from Emplifi | Read Free Report
____
Facebook Dating is still a thing and it has a new feature… Facebook gave in and finally joined TikTok (i hope its first TikTok is a watermarked Reel)… Instagram also joined TikTok. It’s posting videos teaching TikTokers how to make Reels… Not kidding.  
Twitter’s test of a Downvote button for replies rolled out to more users… Twitter rolled back its latest tweets timeline pinning feature following lots of complaints… Instagram is finally letting livestreamers add moderators
AND… 
Pour one out for Meta employees who had devastating news this week :) 
____
WORTH A LOOK 👀
⭐️ TWITTER: You can now join Geekout on Twitter Communities [REQUEST INVITE]
😀 FOLLOW: The 50 cheeriest social media accounts [FIND HAPPINESS]
✨ EMOJIS: 123 new emojis now available in iOS 15.4 [FULL LIST]
👀 FIGHT: How rival social media companies use each others platforms [MORE INFO]
🔥 PRO-TIP: The little-known secret to writing attention grabbing Twitter Thread [REVEAL] 
____
Okay then… Let’s jump into the top stories making the most headlines this week👇
— Matt
P.S. Join us for the Geekout Debrief on Twitter Spaces at 8AM PT / 11PM ET / 4PM UK today (FRI 18 MAR) - LISTEN / REPLAY

🎧 Podcast of the week
Confessions of a Social Media Manager featuring Canva
🚨 Everyone's talking about...
The idea of a bunch of TikTok stars being summoned to a Zoom call with the White House to discuss the war in Ukraine sounds ridiculous. So ridiculous, in fact, that it became a Saturday Night Live sketch. But as the Washington Post reported, it was serious business:
This week, the administration began working with Gen Z For Change, a nonprofit advocacy group, to help identify top content creators on the platform to orchestrate a briefing aimed at answering questions about the conflict and the United States’ role in it.
The Washington Post obtained a recording of the call, and in it, Biden officials stressed the power these creators had in communicating with their followers. “We recognize this is a critically important avenue in the way the American public is finding out about the latest,” said the White House director of digital strategy, Rob Flaherty, “so we wanted to make sure you had the latest information from an authoritative source.”
It makes sense that the White House would want to at least gently guide the messaging that was filtering through to the world’s youth via TikTok, but it was funny that the news broke on Friday around the same time Vice reported that Russia is paying influencers to post pro-Kremlin messages on the platform.
The fact that both the US and Russia recognise the importance of TikTok in their propaganda/messaging efforts demonstrates how social media has become part of the fabric of war.
And how the platforms deal with that fact is a form of warfare, too. Just this week, we’ve seen Twitter say it has labelled or removed 50,000 pieces of misleading Ukraine content, a fake Zelenskyy video caused headaches, and Russia started copying the approach of open-source intelligence to appear more credible. All this happened as Facebook and Twitter continue to be the main outlets for misinformation about Russia’s invasion of Ukraine
Russia followed through on a threat to ban Instagram. Platform chief Adam Mosseri said “This decision will cut 80 million in Russia off from one another, and from the rest of the world as ~80% of people in Russia follow an Instagram account outside their country. This is wrong.”
If you shut down one platform, another will come to the fore. Clubhouse has flown under the Kremlin’s radar to become a home for anti-Putin talk in Russia.
But taking a step away from all the bans, blocks, and political tussles over propaganda, just look at the story of the 19-year-old who shared her escape from Ukraine on TikTok for an example of how social media still has the ability to connect us on a very human level.
It was supposed to be the legislation that showed the UK leading the way in keeping social media platforms safe.
But the UK government’s Online Safety Bill, published in its latest form this week, has instead become a jumbled bag of rules designed to deal with every possible bugbear ministers want to address. And with an approach to enforcement that draws on the worst of anti-tech hysteria, many are questioning the workability of the bill.
It’s a tough bill: platform executives can be held criminally liable if they don’t work with regulator Ofcom’s investigations into alleged wrongdoing. And it’s broad, covering “legal but harmful” content as well as behaviour that is explicitly illegal. The fact that “legal but harmful” won’t even be technically defined until later is cause for concern in itself.
As Sky News’ Rowland Manthorpe summarises, the broad, vague nature of the the bill might mean it’s going to cause plenty of unnecessary headaches for years to come:
A more piecemeal approach, or one using existing institutions, wouldn’t have yielded such extreme uncertainty. The police could have been given new funding to prosecute abuse, much of which is already illegal under our current law, or to go after online scams. Different issues could have been parcelled out in other, more focused legislation.
But it is too late for might-have-beens. The only thing to do now is to watch what happens as the new regime develops. After all this time, the wait to find out what Online Safety means is not over. Don’t bet against it still being a work in progress in five more years.
Mark Zuckerberg this week confirmed what we already knew thanks to people who dig through app code to expose new features: NFTs are coming to Instagram.
Speaking at SXSW, Mark Zuckerberg confirmed that digital collectibles would be arriving on Instagram “in the near term.”
“We’re working on bringing NFTs to Instagram in the near term,“ he said. He didn’t detail exactly how that would take shape, but suggested people would be able to show off their existing NFTs and potentially mint new ones. "I’m not ready to kind of announce exactly what that’s going to be today. But over the next several months, the ability to bring some of your NFTs in, hopefully over time be able to mint things within that environment.”
In recent months, we’ve seen code pop up pointing to a ‘Collectibles’ feature that would allow users to collect and display NFTs in Instagram. But as the first big wave of interest in NFTs wanes, the question remains if the endorsement of a household name like Instagram can overcome the usability hurdles NFTs can present to cryptocurrency newcomers and the safety issues around theft.
There are signs that a second, more mature wave of NFT activity could be on the way. The fashion industry is taking an interest, and with recent investment talks valuing Bored Ape Yacht Club parent Yuga Labs at a reported $5bn, the business of NFTs isn’t going to disappear any time soon.
👀 Must-read of the week
Why We Use “lol” So Much
🤔 Thought for the week
He’s not wrong, is he? 👇
📈 Chart of the week
Matt Navarra
New research about Twitter Lurkers

- Roughly half of U.S. adults who use Twitter (49%) post fewer than five tweets per month

- Most adult Twitter lurkers are aged between 30 and 49

Source: @pewresearch
https://t.co/Fg2rwK4Q99 https://t.co/8IJPUIomvP
📊 Stat of the week
💬 You can quote me on that
When I’m quoted in the news, you’ll find it here…
How LinkedIn transformed itself into a gen Z-friendly social media contender
🌟 New feature of the week
Constantly forgetting to add important @mentions in your Instagram Stories? This new feature in development will please you:
Credit: Alessandro Paluzzi
Credit: Alessandro Paluzzi
🐣 Tweet of the week
❓ Question of the week
The replies here include lots of useful tools for disorganised social media managers. Tap through and see what you’re missing out on… 👇
Matt Navarra
best all-in-one calendar, to-do list, email platform?

Any recommendations ?
🔵 Meta news
All the latest from Meta brands: Facebook, Instagram, Messenger, WhatsApp, and beyond:
Facebook’s Parent Company Will Make Employees Do Their Own Laundry
  • Meta has confirmed that Facebook has joined TikTok. [TechCrunch]
  • …and Instagram has a TikTok account, too. [Mashable]
  • Meta has been fined €17m for 12 EU data protection breaches in 2018. [RTE]
  • The family of a teenager whose death has been linked to Instagram have expressed frustration at the time it has taken for Meta to release relevant data. [The Guardian]
  • Meta will let brands have more control over ad placement in a test later this year. [TechCrunch]
  • Facebook appears to be better at recommending child predation groups than it is at removing them. [Wired $$$]
  • Meta has filed another lawsuit over misuse of its platforms. This times it’s about fake customer reviews on Facebook. [Social Media Today]
  • Australia has sued Meta over scam ads with fake celebrity endorsements. [Sky News]
  • Instagram suspended Kanye West for 24 hours for violating its harassment policy,. [Variety]
New features and tests:
Facebook:
  • Facebook has been spotted testing a profile and Page switcher similar to Instagram’s. [@yousufortaccom]
  • A new look for Facebook live video broadcasts has been spotted in the wild. [@jonah_manzano]
  • Facebook is still testing various tweaks to profile page layouts. [@mrchrisfloyd]
  • Facebook Dating has added a ‘send a smile if you want to match’ feature. [@MattNavarra]
  • Facebook has added a ‘Feature Sets’ option for Group admins. It’s a new shortcut to enable bundles of group features. [@MattNavarra]
  • Meta has been spotted offering a new ‘account health’ evaluation programme. [@ahmedghanem]
Instagram:
  • Instagram has launched new safety tools for parents in the US. [TechCrunch]
  • Instagram now lets you assign a moderator for your Live broadcasts. [Engadget]
  • Instagram has been spotted testing its camera-based search feature in the wild. [@LindseyGamble_]
  • Instagram is starting to offer real-time support in-app for creators. [@MattNavarra]
  • Instagram is testing an option to block people you mention in a Story from sharing it via their own account. [@yousufortaccom]
  • Instagram’s latest API update enables third-party tools to publish Carousel / Multi-Image posts. [@MattNavarra]
  • Instagram is testing an easier Save button for Reels. [@hammodoh1]
  • Instagram could soon add a ‘reply to author’ option on posts. [@alex193a]
  • Instagram’s subscriber offering is coming together. The option to create exclusive subscriber posts has been uncovered. [@alex193a]
  • …and also a Mute button for Reels. [@beto011120]
  • Instagram is testing a new reaction sticker for Stories. [@hammodoh1]
  • Instagram has been spotted testing a redesigned Reel duration button. [@ahmedghanem]
  • Instagram seems almost ready to launch the ‘Add Yours’ sticker for Reels. [@alex193a]
  • Instagram is working on new features for the Explore page. [@alex193a]
  • Instagram could soon let you comment on feed posts with a music sticker. [@alex193a]
WhatsApp:
  • WhatsApp is working on a revamped contact info page. [WABetaInfo]
  • WhatsApp is nearly ready to launch a global voice notes player so you don’t have to stay inside a specific chat to listen to a note. [WABetaInfo]
Quest/VR/devices:
  • Meta is giving users more control over their personal safety boundary feature, including the ability to switch it off. [TechCrunch]
  • Meta’s Ray-Ban Stories glasses have new features, including 60-second video recording with audible notifications. They’ve also launched in four new European countries. [Tech at Meta]
  • Meta has launched parental supervision tools for Quest. [Meta Newsroom]
🐣 Twitter news
Twitter rolls back its decision to force you into the out-of-order timeline
  • The new version of TweetDeck might roll out as a Twitter Blue subscriber feature, according to app code. [@wongmjane]
  • Twitter has warned about phishing attacks by people posing as company employees. [@TwitterSupport]
New features and tests:
  • Twitter’s ‘Circle’ feature appears to be almost ready to launch. [TechCrunch]
  • …and the feature might eventually support the ability to set up multiple circles. [@wongmjane]
  • Twitter is rolling out a clipping tool for Spaces, initially to a limited number of users on iOS. [@TwitterSpaces]
  • Twitter’s upcoming ‘Podcasts’ feature appears to be an aggregator of podcast links shared by your followers. [@wongmjane]
  • Twitter is still working on analytics for Spaces. [@nima_owji]
  • Twitter is developing a feature called ‘tweet awards’. [@wongmjane]
  • Twitter is working on a pronouns field for profiles. [@alex193a]
  • Twitter is rolling out member search for Communities. [@HiCommunities]
  • Twitter’s beta on iOS now lets Blue subscribers filter Top Articles by timeframe. [@MattNavarra]
  • Twitter could soon offer an ‘Author labels’ for tweets in replies, to clearly show which are by the OP. [@alex193a]
  • Twitter is working on a homescreen shortcut icon to specific Communities. [@alex193a]
🔺 TikTok news
Inside Project Texas, TikTok’s Big Answer To US Lawmakers’ China Fears
  • BBC News has explained why it took its time to join TikTok. [Journalism.co.uk]
  • The exec in charge of finding TikTok’s biggest UK-based viral stars has revealed what her team looks for in a superstar on the platform. [Insider $$$]
  • TikTok has become an official partner of the Cannes film festival. [Variety]
New features and tests:
  • TikTok now lets you know how many people saved your video. [@hammodoh1]
  • TikTok creators can now add Instacart shopping lists to their videos. [TechCrunch]
  • You can now schedule publishing of TikTok videos uploaded on desktop. [@MattNavarra]
  • Stories are showing up on profiles for some TikTok users. [@hammodoh1]
  • And TikTok Stories is rolling out more widely. [@RothsReviews
💥 More social media news and updates
Social media battles make Americans log off - to go and read the news instead
  • Twitch says it has suspended accounts linked to a co-ordinated harassment campaign against women and the LGBTQ+ community. [@TwitchSupport]
  • YouTube has forced an app called Vanced, which offers features like adblocking for the platform, to shut down. [The Verge]
  • YouTube has removed an interview with Donald Trump in which he repeated familiar lies about the 2020 US election. [Rolling Stone $$$]
  • Snap has introduced new safety-related restrictions on developers using its SnapKit platform. [TechCrunch]
  • Vimeo has faced criticism for hiking prices for some creators to thousands of dollars per year. [The Verge]
  • A proposed bill in California would let parents sue social media companies for addicting kids. [Los Angeles Times]
  • Linktree has big plans for its ‘link-in-bio’ tool. [Protocol]
  • Brandwatch has acquired influencer marketing platform Paladin. [PR Newswire]
New features and tests:
  • YouTube is rolling out video transcriptions on Android. [Android Police]
  • Snapchat’s new Custom Landmarks feature could turn every public space into an AR experience. [TechCrunch]
  • Snapchat now lets you share outfits for your Bitmoji. [Adweek $$$]
  • Snapchat is working on a Communities feature. [@alex193a]
  • Discord is rolling out a new account switcher. [XDA Developers]
  • Clubhouse is testing a ‘wave bar’ feature. [Adweek $$$]
  • Pinterest now offers new social sharing features for Idea Pins. [TechCrunch]
  • Telegram has added new features including a download manager, a new attachment menu, and more. [MacRumors]
💲 Advertise in Geekout
  • Geekout has 17,500+ subscribers.
  • Geekout subscribers manage social media for the world’s biggest brands including Apple, Amazon, BBC, Edelman, Redbull, Twitter, McDonalds, Nike, and more.
  • Geekout has an industry-beating open rate of 51% and a 30% click rate!
You should advertise in Geekout!
Get in touch: matt@mattnavarra.com
📖 Weekend reading
Suffixes Have Become Slang On Social Media
😳 And finally...
When logos go wrong…
Australian Government Removes Women’s Group Logo That Looks Like a Dick
📅 Back next week...
…And that’s everything you need to know this week!
Geekout download. Done. ✅
Right… Time to go pre-order this epic new Lego set. Great Scott!
Goodbye geeks!
— Matt
_________________
SUPPORT GEEKOUT ❤️
Don’t keep Geekout to yourself!
Help others discover the geekiness:
This newsletter is edited by Martin SFP Bryant.
Did you enjoy this issue?