Social media is forever changing which makes it easy to miss an update from time to time. Twice a month, we look into three of the latest key updates from the past few weeks from the various social media giants. Here’s what’s been happening recently…
The return of Bebo 👀
The famed social network from the 00’s – which allowed people to add their “other halves” and pick their top 16 friends – is set to come back next month, its owners have teased.
Writing on the homepage of the site, Co-Founder Michael Birch said: “Bebo is coming back in February 2021 as a brand new social network. We are currently in private beta. If you’ve been invited please enter the password below … This is a totally new site developed by the original founders. All the old accounts are long gone (probably for the better, though sorry for the old photos!).”
And it seems fans of the social network were feeling a bit nostalgic and excited to see it return.
One wrote: “If Bebo really is coming back I expect written applications from each of my friends as to why they deserve to be in my Top 16. I will be checking references.”
Whilst another added: “I wish Bebo will somehow allow us back into our old accounts. My email ain’t changed!! That will bring back so many memories it would make my entire life.”
It has also been reported that Bebo plans to “take on Facebook and Twitter” for the power of social media. Birch says the platform’s re-launch will offer a “refreshing break” from the news and misinformation that he feels dominates other platforms like Facebook and Twitter. He said Bebo will offer “live social networking – when you’re logged into Bebo, you are aware of which other friends are online. You can interact with them in real-time.” Birch also revealed that Bebo’s web address attracts one visit every three seconds on average, even while the platform has been offline.
Will you sign up for Bebo for the sake of nostalgia? Or is that stone best left unturned in the noughties?
Social Platforms Launch New Initiatives to Celebrate Black History Month
February is Black History Month and this week, all of the major social platforms have announced new programs and initiatives to celebrate Black stories and highlight the contributions of people of colour, as part of the event.
Here’s a look at what each platform has announced and how you can take part in the various events and happenings.
Facebook, which has boosted its support of Black creators and the community over the past year, is launching a series of educational videos and programs designed to highlight Black creators and their contributions to culture, in various ways.
First off is a new video series called “Written By,” which will feature stories designed to “promote conversations about how Black history continues to be written in real-time”.
Facebook’s also launching a new, four-part series on Facebook Watch to showcase Black contributions in music.
“Each episode of “Forward: The Future of Black Music” will feature a music icon shining the light on a newcomer they believe to be the future. Influenced by the classic TV series “Iconoclasts,” viewers will be a fly-on-the-wall for a musical experience with a legend and their successor. The series will also be viewable on Messenger’s Watch Together.”
Instagram is promoting Black voices and their contributions via the #ShareBlackStories hashtag, which it’s been looking to boost to assist the Black community, which has been disproportionately impacted by the pandemic.
Instagram’s also adding new creative tools in the Instagram Camera to enable users to take part in the event, while it’s also hosting workshops and other events for Black creators.
YouTube says that it has “a host of exciting activities planned” for Black History Month, which will begin with a new showcase of artwork from Black guest artists that will be featured on the YouTube homepage, “along with curated content from Black Creators and talent across our Spotlight and TV surfaces – including new YouTube Originals and Kids content.”
TikTok, meanwhile, has launched a new “Black TikTok Trailblazers” list.
“These individuals were recognized and nominated by the North America #BlackTikTok community for being leaders and pioneers on and off TikTok. Our Trailblazers are using their platform to educate, entertain, and advocate for the Black community.”
TikTok is also adding a new #MakeBlackHistory banner on the Discover page, in order to connect users to a schedule of TikTok LIVE programming featuring Black creators and artists, while its also rolling out new creative effects and stickers linked into the event.
Instagram Adds ‘Recently Deleted’ Folder to Safeguard Against Mistaken Post Removal
This will make many Instagrammers very happy – the platform is today adding a new ‘Recently Deleted’ folder which will enable users to restore any feed posts that they’ve deleted for 30 days after.
As explained by Instagram:
“Now, for the first time, you can review and restore deleted content in the Instagram app. Photos, videos, reels, IGTV videos and stories you choose to delete are removed from your account immediately and moved to the Recently Deleted folder.”
Given the ephemeral nature of Stories, they don’t stick around for 30 days, and will only stay in your Recently Deleted folder for 24 hours max. But everything else will remain available for a month, giving you plenty of time to restore any mistakenly erased IG masterpieces.
Or maybe, maliciously erased. Instagram also notes that many people who’ve had their accounts hacked have also ended up having their content deleted, with no way to recover it.
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