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…

Instagram to Launch Multi-Participant Live-Streams

While audio live-streaming is having its moment with the rise in popularity of Clubhouse, Instagram is still catching up on the last big live-streaming trend, with Instagram Chief Adam Mosseri revealing that the company is planning to launch multi-participant IG Live video chats within the next few weeks.

Mosseri made the announcement during an interview with Lilly Singh on her talk show ‘A Little Late‘.

As explained by Mosseri“We have been working on live groups – finally. We’re releasing the ability to go live with more than one other person, so with up to four other people, in the next couple of weeks, which we’re really excited about.”

Live-streaming, in general, saw a big rise in 2020, as people sought ways to stay connected amid the various lockdowns and mitigation measures, so no doubt Instagram would have liked to have got the feature out even sooner. But now, it looks set to be launched very soon, providing another means to broadcast, and connect with your Instagram audience.

That could open up a range of possibilities and options. You could conduct interviews, invite fans and customers onto streams, share the stage with influencers, etc. Going live with another person can also feel less intimidating – and as shown by the rise in audio live-stream platforms, people are clearly interested in more authentic, in-the-moment connection at this time.

There’s no definitive date outlined for the launch as yet, but expect an official announcement from IG some time soon.

Instagram Announces New Steps to Combat Bullying and Abuse via DMs

More from Instagram here as the platform announces new steps in its efforts to protect users from bullying and abuse via DMs, with tougher enforcement for those who repeatedly violate platform rules and an expansion of the option to switch off DMs for selected user groups.

As explained by Instagram“We want Instagram to be a place for people to connect with the people and things they love. But we also know that, just like in the offline world, there will always be those who abuse others. We’ve seen it most recently with racist online abuse targeted at footballers in the UK. We don’t want this behaviour on Instagram.”

 

Instagram has seen various incidents of racial-based attacks against high profile footballers in the UK of late, with players from a number of Premier League clubs being targeted via their Instagram Direct inbox. Manchester United, in a joint statement with Everton, Liverpool and Manchester City, has condemned these acts and has called on Instagram’s parent company Facebook to do more to protect users from such.

But the fact that these incidents have happened in direct messages has complicated things, as noted by Instagram:

“Because DMs are for private conversations, we don’t use technology to proactively detect content like hate speech or bullying the same way we do in other places. But there are still more steps we can take to help prevent this type of behavior.”

In line with this, Instagram has announced a range of new measures to combat such incidents. First off, Instagram says that it will now disable the accounts of people who send abusive DMs. In addition to this, Instagram’s looking to give personal accounts the option to switch off DMs from people they don’t follow, which is currently available on business and creator accounts.

Whether this makes a difference remains to be seen, but at least Instagram are FINALLY doing something about this issue.

TikTok Launches New Seller University as it Looks to Expand its eCommerce Push

TikTok is working quickly to provide more monetisation options for creators, with new eCommerce and in-stream selling tools that users will eventually be able to incorporate into their profiles, videos and live-streams.

The latest development on this front, following its partnership with Shopify, is a new education portal called TikTok Shop: Seller University, which TikTok is currently testing in Indonesia.

 

As you can see in the image above, TikTok describes the new education platform as:

“…a training hub to help you do business on TikTok. We offer a full suite of lessons on seller tools, policies and the latest updates to the shop. Start to learn and sell big!”

Users will eventually be able to sign-up to the program to sell products on TikTok in a range of ways.

If you choose to sell through your personal page, you can then display products via live-streaming or short videos, with product anchors embedded in your content. When customers view your content, they can be re-directed to the corresponding product detail page by clicking on the product anchor.”

TikTok also notes that those who sign up to the program will be able to showcase their products on a second tab of their profile page.

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