Friday Social: Messenger Reaction Filters, Tackling Terrorism on Social, and Harry Potter’s 20th Anniversary

Charlotte Thompson

June 30th, 2017

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Our #FridaySocial is a weekly round-up of the key social media news stories from the previous seven days.  Let us know your thoughts in the comments or via Twitter – @Umpf

Messenger Reaction Filters

Finding it difficult to muster up the emotion needed to celebrate a friend’s big announcement? Facebook Messenger has a brand new tool to give you a helping hand.

When you’re on a video call with someone over the app, you will see a new reaction filter offering the five standard options for Facebook reactions (Love, Sad, Angry, Happy and Wow). Tap on one and it will animate the screen with tears of laughter, love hearts, or, for the not so happy among us, tears of sadness.

June - Tech Crunch

Oh, and screenshotting a hilarious moment or glitch has been made easier with a dedicated button that will save down images without the hassle of stretching to reach multiple buttons. If you use it, you can post the saved image to your Messenger Day or your other social media accounts.

Tackling Terrorism on Social

Internet giants Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Microsoft have teamed up to tackle terrorism online. All four networks publicly announced the formation of the Global Internet Forum to Counter Terrorism last week, promising to continue to make their hosted services “hostile to terrorists and violent extremists.”

The identical statements listed three points in response to the ever-evolving tactics used by terrorists and extremist groups. These are:

Technological solutions: Improving joint technical work, exchanging best practices, and defining standard reporting methods for terrorist content.

Research: Commissioning research to inform and guide future decisions around the removal of terrorist content.

Knowledge-sharing: Working with counter-terrorism experts including governments, civil society groups, academics and other companies to engage in shared learning about terrorism.

In an effort to form a cohesive barrier to terrorist activity, they will also engage with smaller companies to help with the development of the technology and processes needed to tackle extremist content online.

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Add Text to your Cover Photos

Facebook is currently testing a new feature which allows Page managers to add text to their cover photos. The text box has a limit of just 100 characters so it’s rumoured to be a way to help Facebook sort our Page relevance and connect users to what they actually want to see.

In a statement to Social Media Today, Facebook confirmed the reasoning behind the option:

“We’re always working to make Pages more valuable for people and businesses alike. We recently started testing several cover area designs and enhancements to help businesses feature key information more prominently.

If the Page admin has already filled out the “Description” field in the About section, we will automatically transfer the text. Page admins may edit it at any time by clicking the “Edit Information” option in the cover area.

These new enhancements only apply to Pages with a cover photo.”

Will you be using it on your pages?

Snapchat Geofilters

Snapchat is bringing the creation of custom geofilters out of the dark ages of desktop and onto mobile, making it easier for users to create and submit them.

The mobile creative studio is located in Settings and allows you to choose from a list of pre-set occasions (wedding day, birthday party, new baby and more).  Users can select a template, edit text, and customise their filter using Bitmojis and Snapchat’s Sticker library.

Just like its desktop version, Snapchat’s creative studio requires users to specify a time and perimeter location using a map before submitting the filter to the app for approval. Payment is run in-app too with push notifications once the filters go live.

Bad news, businesses! Snapchat has said that its mobile option is designed for everyday people of the social media universe, and that companies should continue to use the web-based studio option for now.

The app’s new tool is only available in the U.S but will be rolling out to other locations in the future.

June - Snapchat

And finally…

Muggles everywhere took to social media this week to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the release of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone.

Twitter fans marked the occasion using the specially created #HarryPotter20 hashtag, complete with tiny scar and glasses, while Facebook rolled out a subtle feature which turned each house its respective colour when the words Harry Potter, Slytherin, Gryffindor, Hufflepuff, or Ravenclaw were used in a status. A tap of the wand that also appeared cast a magic spell across the screen.

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