Social Media

Regional News • Asia • China
Twitter locks account of Chinese US embassy
Twitter locks account of Chinese US embassy
Credit: Courtesy of Twitter

Twitter has blocked the user account of the Chinese embassy in the US because of a tweet about the treatment of the Uyghur minority. The account @ChineseEmbinUS had published a tweet saying that Uyghur women were no longer "baby-making machines". The original English-language tweet referred to "baby making machines." The statement referred to a study reported by China Daily, a pro-government newspaper.

Technology • Internet & Web
Twitter CEO announces funding of "an initiative around an open decentralized standard for social media"
Twitter CEO announces funding of "an initiative around an open decentralized standard for social media"
Credit: Courtesy of Twitter

Twitter CEO and co-founder Jack has stated in a series of tweets that Twitter is working on a future of social media and doing their "part by funding an initiative around an open decentralized standard for social media." The technology called Bluesky will be blockchain-based and Twitter intends to "ultimately be a client of this standard."

Technology • Internet & Web
Twitter temporarily suspends account of Republican congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene
Twitter temporarily suspends account of Republican congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene
Credit: Courtesy of Twitter

Twitter has on Sunday temporarily blocked the account of Republican Congresswoman and "QAnon" supporter Marjorie Taylor Greene.

Greene had violated company rules on multiple occasions, the online platform said. The congresswoman had written on Twitter that voter fraud had occurred in the Senate elections in Georgia. According to U.S. broadcaster CNN, Greene had spread several conspiracy myths and false reports at once in a lengthy thread.

The congresswoman's Twitter messages were then flagged with a notice that their content was controversial. A few hours later, the online network decided to suspend Greene's account for twelve hours.

Business • Economy
Angela Merkel criticizes Trump's social media ban
Angela Merkel
Angela Merkel Credit: Bundesregierung/Denzel (Public Domain)

German government criticizes the permanent blocking of Trump's social media accounts. Merkel pointed out that freedom of expression as a fundamental right should only be restricted by legislation and not by companies.

In principle, the German government condemns statements inciting hatred and violence and is in favor of regulating social networks.

Technology • Internet & Web
YouTube bans Steve Bannon's podcast channel
YouTube bans Steve Bannon's podcast channel
Credit: Elekes Andor / via Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0)

YouTube bans Steve Bannon's podcast channel hours after Rudy Giuliani appeared on an episode and blamed the Capitol siege on Democrats.

Arts, Entertainment, Culture • Celebrities & Public Figures
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle quit social media for good
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle quit social media for good
Credit: Mark Jones / via Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have “no plans” to return to social media almost a year after Megxit.

A source close to the ex-royals told The Times of London that they’re “very unlikely” to have an online presence, mostly due to the “hate” they’ve received.

Business • Media & Advertising
In Possible New Marketing Trend, Luxury Fashion Brand Bottega Veneta Shuts Down Its Social Media Accounts
In Possible New Marketing Trend, Luxury Fashion Brand Bottega Veneta Shuts Down Its Social Media Accounts
Credit: Screenshot Bottega Veneta

Earlier this week, Kering-owned luxury fashion brand Bottega Veneta closed down its Instagram, Facebook and Twitter accounts without warning and with no explanation. It is unclear whether this is a mere marketing stunt or whether Bottega Veneta's decision may be a bellwether for an emerging trend.

Social media doesn’t work to attract the right people to a luxury brand, according to an analysis of a luxury insiders’ survey among some 500 executives working in or supporting the luxury industry.

“We have not found any marketing tool that produces leads qualified for our luxury products and service,” was among the comments in that survey. And another said, “So far nothing is working. Social media is seeing no actual move to act.”

Two possible reasons are currently discussed publically:

  • Social media is mass, not class. Luxury does not fit in the hodgepodge of divergent messages that is social media.
  • People who can actually afford luxury brands are over-marketed to and not likely to pay attention to the brand's social media posts. Bombarding them with irrelevant posts on social media is not how to be respectful of them and personalize every interaction.

GQ’s Rachel Tashjain speculated: “Perhaps the Bottega deletion is the ultimate act of stealth luxury – it will now be a brand that travels strictly by word of mouth.”

Technology • Internet & Web
Twitter bans former Trump adviser Michael Flynn and other QAnon figures

Twitter took action against a pair of President Trump's close associates Friday, banning them from the platform as part of a broader effort to contain the QAnon conspiracy movement. In recent months, each figure has promoted QAnon, an elaborate constellation of conspiracy theories purporting that President Trump is waging a secret battle against a cabal of political enemies who engage in child sex trafficking, among other baseless claims. As part of Trump's post-election legal team, Powell became a heroic figure to the QAnon crowd, which believes that a master plan being orchestrated behind the scenes will give the president a second term.

Technology • Internet & Web
Google bans right-wing online network Parler from App Store
Google bans right-wing online network Parler from App Store
Credit: Recreation Pendect

Following the violent storming of the US Capitol by radical supporters of outgoing President Donald Trump, Google has removed the online service Parler from its app store.

In addition Apple threatened a removal and demanded that Parler must take measures to prevent users from planning illegal, violent activities together.

Technology • Internet & Web
Twitter has permanently suspended Donald Trump "due to the risk of further incitement of violence"
Twitter has permanently suspended Donald Trump "due to the risk of further incitement of violence"
Credit: Courtesy of Twitter

Twitter has stated that "After close review of recent Tweets from the @realDonaldTrump account and the context around them — specifically how they are being received and interpreted on and off Twitter — we have permanently suspended the account due to the risk of further incitement of violence."

Technology • Internet & Web
Twitter suspends Donald Trump for 12 hours over tweets
Twitter suspends Donald Trump for 12 hours over tweets
Credit: Courtesy of Twitter

Twitter has stated that three tweets of the United States President Donald Trump have been removed because they were in "severe" violation of Twitters "Civic Integrity policy".

This means that Trump needs to remove the tweets and his account will be locked for 12 hours following the removal of the tweets.

Technology • Internet & Web
Facebook criticizes Apple’s iOS privacy changes in newspaper ads
Facebook criticizes Apple’s iOS privacy changes in newspaper ads
Credit: via @DaveStangis (Twitter)

Facebook published full-page newspaper ads in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post on Wednesday criticizing Apple’s upcoming iOS privacy changes.

"We’re standing up to Apple for small businesses everywhere," the headline read. "At Facebook, small business is at the core of our business," the ad continues and claims that Apple's changes will be "devastating to small businesses," and ends by writing that"small businesses deserve to be heard. We hear your concerns, and we stand with you."

Apple responded by saying it was "standing up" for people who use its devices and that user "should know when their data is being collected and shared across other apps and websites — and they should have the choice to allow that or not."

Technology • Internet & Web
To avoid EU privacy rules, Facebook will move UK users to US terms
To avoid EU privacy rules, Facebook will move UK users to US terms
Credit: Illustration for Pendect by Ashley Winkler, Logo Facebook

In an effort to avoid the EU's privacy laws, Facebook will move all of its users in the United Kingdom into user agreements with the corporate headquarters in California. Google has done a similar move in February. 

"Like other companies, Facebook has had to make changes to respond to Brexit and will be transferring legal responsibilities and obligations for UK users from Facebook Ireland to Facebook Inc. There will be no change to the privacy controls or the services Facebook offers to people in the UK," so Facebook's UK arm.

Law
Platforms are required to delete terror propaganda within one hour under new EU regulation

In future, services such as Facebook and YouTube will have to delete terrorist propaganda in the EU within one hour of being requested to do so by the respective authority of an EU state. Negotiators from the European Parliament and EU member states agreed on this on Thursday. For systematic violations, the operators of the sites face fines of four percent of their annual turnover.

Technology • Internet & Web
Second judge says Trump has no legal basis for a TikTok ban
Second judge says Trump has no legal basis for a TikTok ban
Credit: Ashles Winkler for Pendect

Federal Judge Carl Nichols has decided that the U.S. Department of Commerce has no sufficient legal basis for prohibiting ByteDance, the Chinese parent company of TikTok, from holding infrastructure and data for the operation of the social media application in the United States.

The Trump administration used as a basis for its action a 1977 law granting the U.S. president broad emergency powers in the event of extraordinary dangers from abroad. However, this provision expressly prohibits the president from restricting the import and export of information or information material or personal communications. TikTok clearly falls into this category, Judge Nichols now stressed.

Technology • Internet & Web
Spotify has implemented a Stories feature
Spotify has implemented a Stories feature
Credit: Pendect / Courtesy of Spotify (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0)

Following the trend of implementing a Stories feature into the application, Spotify has rolled out a first version of the feature that is already present in other platforms such as Snapchat, Instagram, WhatsApp, LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter.

Spotify uses the feature on top of the "Christmas Hits" playlist to show users short videos of artists talking about their favorite Christmas songs.

Technology • Internet & Web
YouTube starts showing Ads on all videos, even if creators are below the requirements
YouTube starts showing Ads on all videos, even if creators are below the requirements
Credit: Courtesy of Twitter

YouTube has stated that "Starting today we'll begin slowly rolling out ads on a limited number of videos from channels not in YouTube Partner Program,". Previously the terms of service for users in the United States had been changed and YouTube states that it has "the right to monetize all content on the platform and ads may appear on videos from channels not in the YouTube Partner Program". This means that YouTube will earn money on videos even if the content creators do not fulfill the requirements for the YouTube Partner Program to get a share of the revenue.

Technology • Internet & Web
Facebook to be possibly shut down in Vietnam following censorship requests
Facebook to be possibly shut down in Vietnam following censorship requests
Credit: unsplash.com / Thought Catalog

A senior official from Facebook has told Reuters that the Vietnamese government is pressuring the platform to censor more local political content on the social network. If the company does not comply it could face a ban in the country. Vietnam's foreign ministry stated on the matter that "spreading information that violates traditional Vietnamese customs and infringes upon state interests".

Technology • Internet & Web
Twitter rolls out Fleets feature similar to Snapchat and Instagram Stories
Twitter rolls out Fleets feature similar to Snapchat and Instagram Stories
Credit: Courtesy of Twitter

Twitter introduces a new feature called "Fleets" which enables users to share content such as tweets, videos or photos to other users in a separate section of the social media platform.

Content posted to Fleets will be visible for a 24-hour period and vanish after, similar to the Story feature on other platforms such as Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook, WhatsApp and Messenger. The feature will be rolled out to users worldwide.

Technology • Internet & Web
After Beheading Comments Twitter Permanently Suspends Steve Bannon Account

Twitter permanently suspended an account associated with former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon after he suggested in a video posted online Thursday that Dr. Anthony Fauci and FBI Director Christopher Wray should be beheaded.