Monday Morning Learning – 11 January 2021

Published on 11 Jan '21

Is WhatsApp’s privacy policy update new?

WhatsApp has allegedly already been sharing user data with the Facebook suite since 2016. Previously the data policy had a little-used opt-out setting that has been removed in the latest change.

Instagram Tests New Stories Layout on Desktop

Instagram is testing out a new format for the display of Stories on the desktop version of the platform, which is designed to make it easier to scroll through the various Stories from the profiles you follow on the bigger screen.

Which is likely in-line with usage trends. Over time, Stories have become increasingly popular, even superseding the regular news feed in terms of engagement. As such, it seems likely that, at some stage, Instagram will put more focus on Stories over the main feed, at least as an option, which could eventually see the app open to Stories, like TikTok does with its full-screen feed of video clips, making it the key function of the app.

Burger King Rolls Out Its First Rebrand In More Than 20 Years

The visual plays on the chain’s legacy, with a throwback logo and colors and frequent reminders that the brand has been “Flame Grilling Since 1954.” The elements are reminiscent of the 1980s burger wars yet appeal to younger consumers who crave vintage designs. For now, the rebrand is rolling out in the U.S. system but will make its way into the global system throughout the next few years.

Analysis: ‘Whitewashing’ of the traditional mahjong game causes furor online

Dallas-based company The Mahjong Line came under fire earlier this week for cultural appropriation when it refreshed the centuries-old Chinese game of mahjong to engage with the new generation of American mahjong players.

Backlinks Remain a Critical Consideration for SEO

SEO is always changing, with Google making thousands of changes yearly to its ranking algorithm, which determines the order in which search results are displayed for any given query. Backlinks are one of the most important criteria for your ranking efforts. The long-form infographic has more important info for your detailed consumption.

TikTok Launches First LiDAR-Enabled AR Effect for iPhone 12

AR is set to get a lot more focus in 2021, as technological advances, including new wearable devices, come to market, and push the development of digital overlays and tools to the next level.

And recently, TikTok took another step with its AR tools by adding a new LiDAR-enabled effect to ring in the new year. As seen in the link example, the new LiDAR technology responds to the real-world environment, so the glitter falls onto the couch, the floor and the person within the frame. When he moves out of the scene, the glitter from his head and shoulders then falls away in his place.

As noted, AR is set to gain significant momentum in 2021, based on usage trends before and throughout the pandemic, and tools like LiDAR will enable advanced object recognition and responsive options, which could have specific benefits in applications like eCommerce.

Google adds ‘Stories’ to its search app for iOS and Android

As Stories get increasingly more popular, Google has finally introduced the Stories feature also known as web stories on its app. Web Stories (formerly known as ‘AMP stories’) are a web-based version of the popular “Stories” format that blends video, audio, images, animation and text to create a dynamic consumption experience. Web Stories can appear on Google across Search, Google Discover, and Google Images. The format is designed to show off visual content in a similar vein to Snapchat and Instagram Stories.

Facebook Tests New Post Composer to More Easily Add Recent Photos

More to the point, what we can deduce from this update is Facebook’s push to allow users to quickly share more static and videos on the platform. Instagram already had it from the beginning.

It could be Facebook encouraging users to share more personalised content, being a contributor rather than using the platform as a phantom user. It could also be that they realised, more users are interacting with established brands overwatch, publishers and ads, that person-to-person engagement is almost dead.

Facebook removes the ‘Like’ button for Pages and rolls out new features

Facebook recently announced the redesigned Facebook Pages to make it simpler for creators to build their community and achieve their business objectives. A significant change to the Facebook Page experience is the removal of the ‘Like’ button, which will put the focus on Followers and simplify the way people connect with their favourite Pages. “Unlike Likes, Followers of a Page represent the people who can receive updates from Pages, which helps give public figures a stronger indication of their fan base,” Facebook says. The changes will give creators a better indication of how many people receive updates from their Pages.