Social Media

National Retailers Launch “As Seen On TikTok” Sections

The Associated Press reports: TikTok, an app best known for dancing videos with 1 billion users worldwide, has also become a shopping phenomenon. National chains, hoping to get TikTok’s mostly young users into its stores, are setting up TikTok sections, reminiscent of “As Seen On TV” stores that sold products hawked on infomercials. At Barnes & Noble, tables display signs …

Read More »

Facebook Bans Content That “Sexualizes” Celebrities

The Verge reports: Facebook announced Wednesday that it would start removing “severe sexualizing content” targeting public figures as part of a new update to its bullying and harassment policies. The policy changes also include coordinated harassment attacks against users. As part of this new policy update, Facebook said that it would remove any profiles, pages, groups, or events dedicated to …

Read More »

Zuckerberg: Whistleblower’s Claims Don’t Make Sense

Mark Zuckerberg writes on his Facebook page: Now that today’s testimony is over, I wanted to reflect on the public debate we’re in. I’m sure many of you have found the recent coverage hard to read because it just doesn’t reflect the company we know. We care deeply about issues like safety, well-being and mental health. It’s difficult to see …

Read More »

LIVE VIDEO: FB Whistleblower Testifies Before Senate

CNN Business reports: The Facebook whistleblower who released tens of thousands of pages of internal research and documents indicating the company was aware of various problems caused by its apps, including Instagram’s potential “toxic” effect on teen girls, is set to testify at a Senate hearing on Tuesday. Frances Haugen, a 37-year-old former Facebook product manager who worked on civic …

Read More »

Whistleblower To Testify Facebook Is “Urgent Threat”

Reuters reports: Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen will appear before the US Congress Tuesday (Oct 5), where she is set to sharply criticise her former employer as “one of the most urgent threats” facing the country, and to demand transparency about its operations in order to better regulate it. Haugen, a former product manager on Facebook’s civic misinformation team, says the …

Read More »

Facebook And Instagram See Widespread Outage

The Verge reports: Just as Facebook’s Antigone Davis was live on CNBC defending the company’s policies and its handling of research data suggesting Instagram is harmful to teens, its network of services suddenly went offline. On Twitter, Facebook communications exec Andy Stone says, “We’re aware that some people are having trouble accessing our apps and products. We’re working to get …

Read More »

Whistleblower: Facebook Puts Profits Over Safety

The New York Times reports: John Tye, the founder of Whistleblower Aid, a legal nonprofit that represents people seeking to expose potential lawbreaking, was contacted this spring through a mutual connection by a woman who claimed to have worked at Facebook. The woman told Mr. Tye and his team something intriguing: She had access to tens of thousands of pages …

Read More »

Whistleblower To Claim Facebook Helped Enable Riot

The New York Times reports: Facebook, which has been under fire from a former employee who has revealed that the social network knew of many of the harms it was causing, was bracing for new accusations over the weekend from the whistle-blower and said in a memo that it was preparing to mount a vigorous defense. The whistle-blower, whose identity …

Read More »

Trump Asks Federal Court To Force His Return To Twitter

Reuters reports: Former U.S. President Donald Trump asked a federal judge in Florida on Friday to ask Twitter to restore his account, which the company removed in January citing a risk of incitement of violence. Trump filed a request for preliminary injunction against Twitter in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida, arguing the social media company …

Read More »

YouTube Bans Prominent Anti-Vaxxers, Anti-Vax Clips

The Washington Post reports: YouTube is taking down several video channels associated with high-profile anti-vaccine activists including Joseph Mercola [photo] and Robert F. Kennedy Jr., who experts say are partially responsible for helping seed the skepticism that’s contributed to slowing vaccination rates across the country. As part of a new set of policies aimed at cutting down on anti-vaccine content …

Read More »

Instagram For Kids On Hold After Critical Reports

CNBC reports: Facebook, which faced sharp criticism from lawmakers and users for its plan to develop an Instagram for kids, announced Monday it’s pausing work on the project. “While we believe building ‘Instagram Kids’ is the right thing to do, Instagram, and its parent company Facebook, will re-evaluate the project at a later date. In the interim Instagram will continue …

Read More »

Gab CEO Warns Users: Your Threats Will Destroy Us

“Everyone thinks they have all the answers when it comes to moderating, but Gab is the one with Congress down our backs and the nation state of Germany threatening us along with the entire mainstream press, activist groups with war chests in the hundreds of millions, and other bad actors attacking us constantly. “Do you want this website to stay …

Read More »

Big Tech Sues Texas Over Law On Social Media Bans

The Texas Tribune reports: Texas is being sued over its new law barring social media platforms from banning users over their political views by two trade associations that represent some of the industry’s biggest online companies. NetChoice and the Computer and Communications Industry Association, which represent Google and Twitter, among other companies in the e-commerce and social media industries, filed …

Read More »

BOOK: Mark Zuckerberg Made Secret Deal With Trump

The Daily Beast reports: During a meeting in Washington, D.C. in 2019, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg agreed to not fact-check political posts if the Trump administration would steer clear of any “heavy-handed regulations,” venture capitalist Peter Thiel told an associate, according to a new book. The associate alleged that at the meeting—which was also attended by Thiel, former President Trump, …

Read More »

DHS: Extremists Used TikTok To Push Violence At Riot

Politico reports: Federal officials warned law enforcement agencies this spring that domestic extremists had used TikTok in the lead-up to the Jan. 6 riots on the Capitol, including by promoting bringing guns to Washington that day, according to an internal government document — highlighting authorities’ growing concern over violent content on the video app. In the April 19 briefing reviewed …

Read More »

FEC Rules For Twitter On Hunter Biden “Laptop” Story

The New York Times reports: The Federal Election Commission has dismissed Republican accusations that Twitter violated election laws in October by blocking people from posting links to an unsubstantiated New York Post article about Joseph R. Biden Jr.’s son Hunter Biden, in a decision that is likely to set a precedent for future cases involving social media sites and federal …

Read More »

TikTokers Spam Texas Abortion Snitch Line With Porn

The Guardian reports: Pro-choice users on TikTok and Reddit have launched a guerrilla effort to thwart Texas’s extreme new abortion law, flooding an online tip website that encourages people to report violators of the law with false reports, Shrek memes, and porn. Though the site was launched a month ago, the fake reports came flooding in on the eve of …

Read More »

Reddit Bans 124,000 Member Anti-Vax Forum

Input reports: Earlier this afternoon, r/NoNewNormal, an anti-vax subreddit with more than 124,000 users, was banned from Reddit, for “brigading,” the act of one community overwhelming another with a stream of spam and memes, a form of digital invasion designed to drown out the voices of internet foes. CNET reports: Though the admin confirmed there’s been a “pronounced” increase in …

Read More »

Twitter Feature Will “Autoblock” Abusive Accounts

From Twitter’s corporate blog: Unwelcome Tweets and noise can get in the way of conversations on Twitter, so we’re introducing Safety Mode, a new feature that aims to reduce disruptive interactions. Starting today, we’re rolling out this safety feature to a small feedback group on iOS, Android, and Twitter.com, beginning with accounts that have English-language settings enabled. Safety Mode is …

Read More »

Axios: Trump Demands Financial Stake To Join GETTR

Axios reports: Former President Trump wanted equity in Gettr, the new social media app launched by former Trump aide Jason Miller, sources tell Axios. The former president has yet to join the app, although sources say that conversations about his participation are ongoing. Discussions about equity are likely part of those conversations, and everything is a negotiation point. Miller has …

Read More »