1) Facebook launches FB news across UK.
2) Introduction of Birdwatch by Twitter
3) Story Pins : Easier way to discover fresh ideas : Pinterest
4) CEO Susan Wojcicki addresses YouTube’s priorities for 2021
5) Clearing myths about News Feed algorithm
6) Decisions of Oversight Board : Facebook
7) Twitter has got a new look!!
8) Pinterest supports emotional wellbeing through new social impact efforts
9) App Tracking Transparency (ATT) policy
1) Across the UK FB begins to roll out Facebook News, a destination within the Facebook app that features news from hundreds of leading national, local and lifestyle outlets. The product puts original journalism in front of new audiences and provides publishers with more advertising and subscription opportunities to build sustainable businesses for the future. They’re also announcing a number of new partners for Facebook News : Channel 4 News, Daily Mail Group, DC Thomson, Financial Times, Sky News etc.. With Facebook News, people in the UK will see the top headlines and stories of the day next to news personalised to their interests.
Key features of Facebook News include:
• Today’s stories chosen by a team of journalists to catch up on the latest news as it breaks throughout the day.
• Personalisation based on the news you read, share and follow, so you can find new interests and topics from your favourite news outlets or publications you haven’t previously followed, creating a fresh and interesting experience every time
• News sections to dive deeper into business, entertainment, health, science & tech and sport
• Controls to make sure you see the articles, topics or publishers you want to see and hide those you don’t.
Facebook News was built to bring people closer to the stories that impact their lives and the community around them. Their aim is to build on our efforts to sustain great national and local journalism and create more value for publishers.
2) Twitter has introducing Birdwatch, a community-based approach to misinformation.
Birdwatch allows people to identify information in Tweets they believe is misleading and write notes that provide informative context. This approach has the potential to respond quickly when misleading information spreads, adding context that people trust and find valuable. Eventually this aims to make notes visible directly on Tweets for Twitter users around the world, when there is consensus from a broad and diverse set of contributors. In this first phase of the pilot, notes will only be visible on a separate Birdwatch site. On this site, pilot participants can also rate the helpfulness of notes added by other contributors. These notes are being intentionally kept separate from Twitter for now, while they build Birdwatch and gain confidence that it produces context people find helpful and appropriate. And Twitter has said that, notes will not have an effect on the way people see Tweets or their system recommendations.
To that end, they’re also taking significant steps to make Birdwatch transparent:
• All data contributed to Birdwatch will be publicly available and downloadable in TSV files
• As they develop algorithms that power Birdwatch — such as reputation and consensus systems — they aim to publish that code publicly in the Birdwatch Guide.
They have invited anyone to sign up and participate in this program, and know that the broader and more diverse the group, the better Birdwatch will be at effectively addressing misinformation. More details on how to apply.
3) Pinterest introduces an easier way to discover fresh ideas from creators with following streams. They introduce “Story Pins”, a place for Pinners to see new Story Pins from the creators they follow, right at the top of the home feed. In this immersive stream, Pinners can find fresh Story Pins and even find new creators to follow through the “Discover creators” icon.
“Story Pins are different in all the ways,” says Pinterest. The main value of Pinterest is to discover positive, inspirational and educational ideas, and not just for entertainment purposes. They’re saveable, actionable and long-lasting so they can be discovered over time. From the following stream, Pinners can save ideas and visit a creator’s profile to see even more ideas that might inspire their next project.
4) CEO Susan Wojcicki addressed YouTube’s priorities for 2021 on 27th January : In her talk she mentions that a lot of people started to use their platform to learn new skills, gather information about Covid-19 etc… The pandemic has increased our digital life.
She also said that, at YouTube, they’re taking the lessons of 2020 into the new year. They’re focused on delivering on our key priorities, which are, growing the creator economy, living up to our responsibilities, helping people learn new skills and building for the future of YouTube.
In the year ahead, she said, they are committing to support creators and artists in three key areas:
1. Policy transparency
She said, ” We know that creators want support from our teams and more transparency into how our policies work. We recognize we have more work to do and are committed to providing more support to creators in 2021. Our policies are designed to protect our YouTube community against abuse and bad actors and also to make sure we are able to keep advertisers coming back to YouTube to support our creator ecosystem. But we recognize that at the scale we operate, it’s hard for creators to keep up with changing Community Guidelines. And we also know that we make mistakes. We take these issues seriously, and we’re making changes this year to help creators. Some of the work we will be doing to address this area of concern for the community includes: more transparency in our policies, more support available for creators, and improvements to the appeal process for creators. “
2. Additional sources of revenue
” Our Music and Premium Subscriptions have been growing quickly, reaching more than 30 million paid Members in the third quarter of last year. And creators and artists are finding other new ways to connect with their audiences and diversify their revenue,” she said.
3. Supporting the success of all creators
She said, “we also want to make sure that all creators can participate in these opportunities. We’ve heard concerns from creators across various communities, particularly in the Black community, about their experiences on the platform. But since we don’t ask creators to identify themselves, it’s difficult to understand what’s happening at scale for different communities on YouTube. We’ve been working to address that. This year, we’ll start asking creators in the U.S. on a voluntary basis to provide us with their gender, sexual orientation, race, and ethnicity. This information will help us identify potential gaps in our systems that might impact creators. As we gather this data, we’ll look closely at how content from different communities is treated in search and discovery and monetization. We think this effort will ultimately benefit the entire YouTube community, and we appreciate the partnership of the Black, LGBTQ+, and Latinx creator communities who have shared their perspectives with us to help make YouTube a better place for everyone.”
5) “When it comes to the News Feed algorithm, there are many theories and myths,” said FB. Facebook share many of the details and features of News Feed. They have said that the machine learning (ML) ranking system that powers News Feed is incredibly complex, with many layers. The volume is enormous.
More than 2 billion people around the world use Facebook. They may have trillions of posts and thousands of signals and from that they choose that which is the best recommendations for people. When one open Facebook, that process happens in the background, as our news feed gets loaded. And once they’ve got all this working, things change, and they need to factor in new issues that arise, such as clickbait and the spread of misinformation. When this happens, they have to find new solutions. The ranking system is not just one single algorithm; it’s multiple layers of ML models and rankings that we apply in order to predict the content that’s most relevant and meaningful for each user. As they move through each stage, the ranking system narrows down those thousands of candidate posts to the few hundred that appear in someone’s News Feed at any given time.
The system determines which posts show up in our News Feed, and in what order. This is done by predicting what we’re most likely to be interested in or engage with. These predictions are based on a variety of factors, including what and whom we’ve followed, liked, or engaged with recently. Liking is not the only way one express his/her interest to a post. People share articles they find interesting, watch videos or leave thoughtful comments. Things get more complex when they optimize and create the most long-term value for people by showing them content that is meaningful and relevant to them. They also survey people. Then they take each prediction into account based on the actions that the users tell them.
They manage this in various steps, strategically arranged to make it fast and to limit the amount of computing resources required. First, the system collects all the candidate posts. This eligible inventory includes any post shared by a friend, group, or Page he/she’s connected to that was made since his last login and has not been deleted. Next, the system needs to score each post for a variety of factors, such as the type of post, similarity to other items. To calculate this for more than 1,000 posts, for each of the billions of users — all in real time — they run these models for all candidate stories in parallel on multiple machines, called predictors.
Before they combine all these predictions into a single score, they apply some additional rules. They wait until after they have these first predictions so that they can narrow the pool of posts to be ranked — and we apply them over multiple passes to save computational power.
First, certain integrity processes are applied to every post. These are designed to determine which integrity detection measures, if any, need to be applied to the stories selected for ranking. In the next pass, a lightweight model narrows the pool of candidates to approximately 500 of the most relevant posts for Juan. Ranking fewer stories allows us to use more powerful neural network models for the next passes.
Next is the main scoring pass, where most of the personalization happens. Here, a score for each story is calculated independently, and then all 500 posts are put in order by score. For some, the score may be higher for likes than for commenting, as some people like to express themselves more through liking than commenting. Any action a person rarely engages in (for instance, a like prediction that’s very close to zero) automatically gets a minimal role in ranking, as the predicted value is very low.
Finally, they run the contextual pass, in which contextual features like content type diversity rules are added to make sure the News Feed has a good mix of content types and one is not seeing multiple video posts, one after another. All these ranking steps happen in the time it takes for one to open the Facebook app, and within seconds, he/she has a scored News Feed that’s ready for him to browse and enjoy.
6) The Oversight Board published their decisions on the first set of cases they chose to review. They restored the breast cancer awareness post last year, as it did not violate our policies and was removed in error.
As we are in the middle of a pandemic, Facebook feels that it’s important to comment on the Covid-19 case. The board rightfully raises concerns that they can be more transparent about our COVID-19 misinformation policies. They agree that these policies could be clearer and intend to publish updated COVID-19 misinformation policies soon. But they believe that it is critical for everyone to have access to accurate information, and their current approach in removing misinformation is based on extensive consultation with leading scientists.
The next steps taken by Facebook are to update the Newsroom posts about each case within 30 days to explain how they have considered the policy recommendations.
And FB said that, the Oversight Board’s decisions (and future board decisions) are binding on Facebook, and they will restore or remove content based on their determination.
There are several phases to fully implement a decision by the Oversight Board. The board’s decision will impact content on the platform in two ways — through the binding aspects of the decision itself, and through any additional guidance or recommendation the board includes.
After these steps are completed, Facebook will update the case specific Newsroom post and, in instances where the recommendation is considered at the Policy Forum, document the process in the Policy Forum minutes. Facebook has committed to considering the board’s recommendation through its policy development process.
7) Twitter has now got a new look. Instead of working with some of the larger, more well-known companies, Twitter reached out to @AtelierIrradie in Paris. They had a global perspective, a portfolio of fashion and beauty, and a design aesthetic that they knew was right for what they wanted to do.
They say that, they can turn up or down the expressiveness of the brand based upon the situation or conversation.
The work is ripped, torn, bold, digital, layered and courageous. It has energy and motion. Tears are used to reveal information or to focus on something.
Layers and textures represent the constant stream of overlapping and intersecting conversation.
The use of color that POPS conveys humor, intensity, and authenticity.
And we ground everything in our iconic logo, Twitter blue, AND Tweets.
They worked with @grillitype in Switzerland to develop Chirp, which is their first proprietary typeface.
To get there they blended American Gothic and European Grotesque styles, adding specific handmade quirks of early woodcut specimens. This gives Twitter a versatile and contemporary family with international sensibilities. They’re in the process of extending Chirp to languages beyond the Latin alphabet.
The core of their product isn’t changing, they’re just changing how they show up.
8) Pinterest announced an expansion of the company’s social and community impact efforts through new initiatives led by Ari Simon, Head of Social Impact and Philanthropy. In this newly created role, Ari will oversees Pinterest’s social impact efforts, including a philanthropic strategy focused on expanding emotional wellbeing and place-based giving across Pinterest’s global footprint. They believes that emotional wellbeing is a precondition for inspiration and creating a life we love.
As Pinterest works to build a more positive corner of the internet, the Social Impact and Philanthropy function focuses on taking its impact offline in three areas:
• Expanded Employee Volunteerism: The company is launching an expanded volunteer service program that will grant employees five volunteer days off to support civic and community engagement activities every calendar year.
• Donation Match: Pinterest is increasing its donation matching program and will match funds to eligible nonprofits, dollar for dollar, up to $1,000 per employee every year. Whether it’s one big donation, or spread across multiple nonprofits throughout the year, it will support gifts to qualified organizations.
• Charitable Giving: Pinterest’s expanded philanthropy program will provide 250,000 shares of stock (currently valued at roughly $17 million) in grants this year. The primary focus of the grantmaking will be in the area of emotional well-being, particularly increasing awareness, reducing stigma, supporting innovations in the field, and tackling inequities in access and disparities in outcomes. In addition, the program will include a place-based community giving portfolio, and a reserve for responsive grantmaking to tackle urgent or emerging challenges, like the COVID-19 pandemic and support for organizations tackling racial and other inequities. “Our approach to Social Impact and Philanthropy is guided by the belief that this work doesn’t stand separate from our identity as a company, but is rather core to our brand, our identity, and our long-term vision for impact,” said Ari Simon, Head of Social Impact and Philanthropy. “It’s about finding new and powerful ways to bring inspiration to the world, to reinforce our core values through action, and to show up collectively in the places where we live and work.”
9) Apple’s upcoming App Tracking Transparency (ATT) policy will require developers to ask for permission when they use certain information from other companies’ apps and websites for advertising purposes, even if they already have user consent. And they shared how Google is helping our community prepare, as we know that developers and advertisers in the iOS ecosystem are still figuring out how to adapt.
* Evaluate whether Apple’s ATT prompt is right for your app
* Expect fluctuations in iOS App campaigns traffic
* Implement Apple’s SKAdnetwork API
* Consolidate iOS App campaigns and use only tCPI or tCPA bidding
* Get reporting insights for your iOS App campaigns
* Protect iOS monetization with new AdMob features