The Unsocial Network
Meet Binky, it started as a spoof social media platform but has noted a recent surge in popularity. Currently only available on iPhone, the app aims to be a positive social media experience… just minus anything social. Filled with a continuous feed of random, meaningless posts, users can swipe, like, comment and ‘re-bink’ but no one will ever see it. There’s no need to set up a profile and the settings are simple (do you want the sound on or off? That’s it), just download the app and go. There are a few suggested reasons for its growth. Whether you’re looking to keep your hands busy while weaning yourself off of social media, you’re sick of seeing the depressing news reports in your Facebook feed or the venomous trolls on Twitter, or simply need something that makes you look busy while in an awkward real life situation, Binky’s your new go-to app. But if you want to do something even slightly useful with your time, maybe give this one a miss.
Giant ‘Click Farm’ Discovered in Thailand
Earlier this week, three Chinese men arrested in Thailand admitted to running a ‘click farm’ using hundreds of mobile phones and thousands of SIM cards to run up likes and views on the Chinese social network, WeChat, and they’re not the only ones at it.
If you’ve ever questioned those Instagram comments promising thousands of likes or queried how an account has achieved 10,000 followers with only eight pretty dodgy photos, click farms are the answer. They sound simple, you pay your money and you get an inflated number of likes, but it’s not without its consequences. If you earn money from traffic related advertising, then using click farms is potentially fraudulent, but worse are the terrible conditions that workers ‘employed’ by the click farms have to endure as Channel 4’s dispatches uncovered a couple of years ago.
Snapchat’s Self-serve Ads
Snapchat has earned some serious brownie points with advertisers this week with the launch of its new ‘self-serve’ ad tool.
After suffering a loss of advertising last month, Snapchat has stepped up its game in order to attract advertisers by putting the power in their hands. The self-serve ad tool means advertisers can buy, manage and optimise their campaigns from start to finish rather than leaving it to Snapchat. The tool also converts and edits advertising content to Snapchat’s unique vertical video format without having to use expensive video software meaning smaller businesses have the scope to advertise on the app creating a win-win for all.
Instagram is once again cracking down on users who post paid-for content on their feeds. Rather than using simply #spon, #ad or #sp below the image, Instagram is now adding a feature so ‘Paid partnership with….’ will appear above sponsored posts or story put up by celebrities and other brands.
This change follows a report suggesting 93 per cent of paid-for posts on Instagram from the site’s most popular influencers were not being labelled correctly leaving users unsure as to whether the post was part of a promotional campaign or not. It also follows a warning from the FTC to 90 influencers in April saying they were required by law to clearly disclose if their post is part of a commercial relationship.
This move will increase transparency on the platform and gives users great awareness about the posts they are seeing – it’s a ‘like’ from us.