Five things worth sharing from the last week or so, brought to you by a different member of the Browser Media team every Friday.
This week’s My Five is by Vic.
1. You don’t need to be at the Clubhouse on time
For those of you who are unfamiliar with Clubhouse, the live audio-only chat and networking app, the new feature it’s added this week may not sound like anything special.
However, because one of the app’s USPs was joining live to experience discussions in the here and now, along with its exclusivity, launching a feature that allows users to listen to broadcasts they’ve missed and share content outside of the platform is kinda a big deal.
Known as Replay, rooms can be recorded and then saved to a club or user profile to be shared by the host across other social networks. While this opens up the content to new audiences, there is the risk that users will not bother to visit Clubhouse for live content if it is readily available on demand.
2. Meta tries to do better
Facebook has come under scrutiny for its ad targeting for some time now. Because advertisers could reach audiences by sensitive identifying traits, such as race, ethnicity, political affiliation, religion, and sexual preference, there were plenty of opportunities to manipulate content and even deliver harmful or hateful ads to these demographics.
The US 2016 election was a great example of this, where advertisers for the Donald Trump campaign were able to micro-target Facebook users in swing states. As a result, Zuckerberg was accused of his platform being used to undermine democracy, and was even called into Congress to answer questions.
Now, Facebook’s parent company, Meta, has stated that from January next year, the following will be banned:
- Ad targeting that includes terms like ‘same-sex marriage’, ‘LGBT culture’, ‘Catholic Church’ or ‘Jewish holidays’.
- Any topic or term related to political beliefs, social issues, advocacy causes, as well as political organisations and figures
- Ads targeted around certain health causes, such as terms like lung cancer awareness and chemotherapy
3. Post a pet, we’ll plant a tree (we won’t really though)
If, like me, when you’re done with staring into the void, you resort to endlessly viewing Instagram Stories, you may have seen friends sharing posts of their pets with an Add Yours prompt that states ‘We’ll plant one tree for every pet picture’.
Like many others, I assumed this was an incentive backed by Instagram itself, especially as it was being shared by so many of the accounts I follow. And pets are awesome (especially dogs) and planting a tree is a nice thing to do, so why wouldn’t you?
Turns out, it was all a bit dodgy. The account responsible, @plantatreeco eventually admitted it was them, and then deleted the post after it had been shared a whopping 4 million times as they didn’t have ‘the capabilities and resources’ to actually plant any trees, like, at all.
This prompted people to begin taking a closer look at who was behind the account, and well, this Twitter thread from Patrick Marlborough is wild.
ok, I found most the reporting on the 'post a pet plant a tree' story incredibly shallow/lazy, so I went on a bit of a deep dive, and boy is the truth as dumb, wacky, a pathetic as you'd expect. Follow a long if you want!
— Patrick Marlborough (@Cormac_McCafe) November 9, 2021
If you want a quick summary, head over to Mashable here.
4. Gen-Z ya later
I like to think I’m still young and down with the kids, but the cruel reality is I’m on the wrong side of 35 and painfully uncool.
However, I’ll take being considered uncool by Gen-Z over pure unbridled hate, which is how a lot of big brands, including the NFL, Buzzfeed, Twitter, Tinder, and Abercrombie & Fitch are perceived.
A study in the US of consumers aged 16-24 revealed that connecting with a brand on a personal and relatable level, with a sense of community was pretty darn important, putting brands such as Nike, Shein, Vans, Netflix, Converse and Samsung at the top of the most liked list.
Fishing fanatics angling to buy some new gear from a popular website were in for a bit of a shock earlier this week.
Upon reaching the Angling Direct website, users were redirected to PornHub – which could have been mighty embarrassing given that there is a time and a plaice for getting frisky, and while they might have been wanting to look at some rods, fishnets, and tackle, it’s probably not exactly what they had in mind.
Upon herring about the issue, which occurred at the weekend, Angling Direct bought in cybersecurity experts to help resolve the problem.
Why hackers decided to target Angling Direct is unclear, but my cod, isn’t it a great example of why you should have a robust business continuity plan in place in case your e-commerce site is attacked? As of Thursday, the site *still* isn’t back up. I’m guessing whoever is responsible for IT at the business will be feeling the wrasse of stakeholders, as shares plummeted.
Anyway, I’ll stop carping on about it. If you want to find out more, give this a read.