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Facebook agrees to take a deeper look into Russian Brexit meddling

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Facebook has said it will conduct a wider investigation into whether there was Russian meddling on its platform relating to the 2016 Brexit referendum vote in the UK. Yesterday its UK policy director Simon Milner wrote to a parliamentary committee that’s been conducting a wide-ranging enquiry into fake news — and whose chair has been […]

YouTube is pulling Tide Pod Challenge videos

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People doing stupid stuff on the Internet is hardly news. To wit: The Tide Pod Challenge, in which YouTubers have been filming themselves eating — or, we really hope, pretending to eat — laundry detergent pods. Why? Uh, because they’re brightly colored?? We guess??????? Obviously this is Darwin Awards’ levels of idiocy — given that […]

Giphy builds transparent GIF library for Instagram Stories

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Instagram now lets some users slap background-less GIFs sourced from Giphy onto their Instagram Stories. Rolling out for wider testing with a Giphy-branded design, the new GIF sticker engine could further differentiate Instagram Stories from Snapchat, which has yet to embrace the animation trend. It appears that Giphy has worked with Instagram to create a […]

Bloated Facebook Messenger promises to simplify in 2018

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“The app became too cluttered” Facebook’s head of Messenger David Marcus announced today in a post of plans for 2018 including “massively simplifying and streamlining Messenger this year.” Between Messenger Day/Stories, its Snapchatty augmented reality camera, a bot Discover section, games, and more, Facebook had to build artificial intelligence “M Suggestions” just to remind people […]

Serial SWATter arrested, charged with involuntary manslaughter

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Wichita police have arrested a 25-year-old online troll who calls himself SWAuTistic, charging him with involuntary manslaughter after sending police to a Kansas address. When police arrived at the address they opened fire on the resident, a father of two named Andrew Finch. SWAuTistic, real name Tyler Raj Barriss, could face 11 years in prison. […]

WhatsApp reportedly testing anti-chain letter spam warning

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WhatsApp appears to be testing a new feature aimed at trying to limit the spread of chain letter style spam messages and tackle viral fakes spreading on its platform. Two WhatsApp blog sites, Whatsappen.nl and WABetaInfo, report spotting notification messages in the app which appear intended to warns users that they are at risk of […]

PSA: Google’s art selfie feature is US only for now

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Google’s Arts & Culture app has been around for about a year and half. But it’s taken an art selfie feature to generate a bit of viral interest in the app — with a steady stream of delighted/outraged tweets bubbling up over the weekend as users assessed the results of their fine art doppelgänger. Oh […]

Facebook stock dips after the platform deprioritizes publishers

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Facebook shares fell around 5% on Friday following the news that the company would retool its News Feed to boost social interactions over stories from publishers. Mark Zuckerberg announced the news on Thursday evening in a post on his own Facebook page to expected investor skittishness. “I want to be clear: by making these changes, […]

Snapchat’s big redesign bashed in 83% of user reviews

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Confusingly jamming Stories in between private messages has sparked backlash amongst the first users of Snapchat’s sweeping redesign. In the few countries including the U.K., Australia, and Canada where the redesign is widely available, 83 percent of App Store reviews (1,941) for the update are negative with one or two stars, according to data provided […]

ECJ to rule on whether Facebook needs to hunt for hate speech

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Austria’s Supreme Court is referring a legal challenge over the extent of Facebook’s responsibility to remove hate speech postings to Europe’s top court for an opinion (via derStandard.at). The case has clear implications for freedom of speech online. The original lawsuit against Facebook was filed by the former leader of the Austrian Green Party, Eva Glawischnig, […]

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