Today, thanks to your tips, I'm bringing you a scoop: a new app called Threads, now under development on Instagram, designed to promote sharing with close friends. I published it a few hours ago on The edge:
Facebook is developing a new messaging app called Threads that aims to promote constant, intimate sharing between users and their best friends, The Verge has learned. Threads, designed as an associated app on Instagram, invites users to automatically share their location, speed, and battery life with friends, along with more typical text, photo, and video messages using Instagram's creative tools. The app, which is designed to share with your & # 39;good friends”List on Instagram, is now being tested internally on Facebook.
Instagram declined to comment. (…)
Screenshots reviewed by The Verge show an app designed to promote constant, automatic sharing between users and the people on their "good friends" list on Instagram. Sign up for automatic sharing and Threads will update your status regularly so that your friends get a real-time overview of information about your location, speed and more. Threads is not currently displaying your real-time location – instead it could say that something like a friend & # 39; en route & # 39; is, according to sources familiar with the matter.
The move comes in the midst of the greater pivot of Facebook towards privacy and a abandoned attempt to build a stand-alone messaging app for Instagram. Messages are a core function of Facebook's offer and it is only logical that the company continues to try new things to ensure that it remains an eye on us.
On Twitter, many readers were surprised that Facebook would ask users to share their current battery life. These people should not be Snapchat users: on Snapchat, people like to share stickers that show their battery life, usually as a kind of braggadocio – still look at me here in the club, despite the fact that I'm up to 10 percent empty and Lyft is my only way home!
Location tracking is more interesting, but right now Threads will not show anyone your exact location. (You can offer that information on Facebook Messenger if you want.) Instead, I am told, Threads can generate a status that says something like "I'm on my way". Over time you will have to assume that Instagram wants what Snap has – a real-time map of user locations to enable new social behavior. (By the way, I've always wondered how Instagram could credibly clone Snap Map; the fact that it's now possible remotely is proof of what Close Friends's good idea was.)
Will Threads ever get a public release? Will it win if it wins? Josh Constine is skeptical. Me too, and for this reason: good friends, although a good and useful thing, are already showing signs of bloating. This is largely due to Instagram itself, which regularly "suggests" new friends to add to the list. As a result, my own list has now advanced to more than three dozen people.
The whole point of Close Friends is to reduce the cognitive overhead of public posts by convincing you that you share with an intimate group – ideally one whose members you can usually name. The more people on that list, the more mental math you need to do before you post. Incidentally, this was the exact dynamic that led in the first place to the list of close friends! (And also encouraged the Finstagram phenomenon for it.) As the list swells, users may become less willing to share (automatically, not less!) The more intimate types of data Facebook asks for here – location, speed of movement, etc. .
And that is a difficult problem, because message apps are only really useful if you can reach a large number of people on them. (Beta testers did not want to use Direct, even though they could reach their entire Instagram chart Instagram & # 39; s incentive is to let you make lots of good friends – but it is not clear that real people have the same incentives. To entice people into using Threads, Instagram may have to create other incentives that are not yet in the app. They can still do that – after all, there is a beta test period for that.
Thank you to everyone who has written with feedback about our newer, slimmer format here. I'm still trying to find the balance between being comprehensive and digestible, and hopefully I'll get a little closer today.
Today I offer you a smaller adjustment: new section names. More than two years of writing The interface, I realized that the links after the column really fall into two categories. There are links about governance, both by states and by platforms; and then there are links about the industry: business performance, the coming and going of executives, product launches, behavior of emerging apps, and so on.
As of today, the sections that were previously titled are retired. You will find Governing and Industry instead.
More nice changes coming soon.
Concerns Privacy concerns stand in the way of Facebook share data with researchers needed to understand polarization and propaganda, Craig Silverman changes BuzzFeed. There are very real considerations here, and it is no big surprise to me that Facebook is extra careful about what user data it gives to third parties.
Another source with knowledge of discussions about Facebook, Social Science One and financiers said that the core frustration is that Facebook has deteriorated the quality and depth of the data it will offer, while it took much longer than expected to deliver.
"I think the only way to feel reasonably certain about this project is if you ignore what has happened in the last 16 months. If you take a step back and look where we started and where we are, it's a pretty big step back & # 39 ;, said the source, who was also not authorized to speak publicly.
Facebook will not be confronted with new restrictions on data collection in Germanywhile a lawsuit is pending. (Joseph Nast / Reuters)
Sen. Jon Kyl defends the recent audit of alleged bias against conservatives Facebook & # 39; s article, which he led. "I'm a little disappointed by people who don't appreciate the value of simply hearing the conservative complaints," Kyl said. "It's not easy with a great big company like Facebook with all the other things they do, but at least they acknowledge the fact that they missed the information they needed, and they hired us to get that information." (Heritage Fundament)
Facebook banned the Epoch Times, a popular pro-Trump news center, to buy ads after apparently misrepresenting themselves during the purchasing process. (Brandy Zadrozny and Ben Collins / NBC News)
Google prohibited political discussion on internal mailing lists. Good luck with moderation! (Annie Palmer / CNBC)
US federal agencies employees send articles from white nationalist and conspiracy websites. (Hamed Aleaziz, Ryan Mac and Jeremy Singer-Vine / BuzzFeed)
Researchers are using machine learning to generate false UN speeches, with reasonably good results. (Karen Hao / MIT Tech Review)
Australia "blocks access to internet domains hosting terrorist material during crisis events and will consider legislation to force digital platforms to improve the security of their services. "(Allison Bevege / Reuters)
here is a data analysis of when Chinese state media started promoting disinformation about the protests in Hong Kong. (Future included)
Smartphone users in emerging economies have more diverse social networks than those who don't, according to new research from Pew. (Sarah Perez / TechCrunch)
⭐ Facebook is conducting an evaluation of 600 marketing partners after one of them was caught scraping public messages to build huge databases of user information and sell access. It is thought that the practice goes far beyond the one caught, Rob Price reports:
The findings raise important questions about Facebook's due diligence when checking apps that use Instagram data. Although the vast majority of companies identified by Business Insider were not Facebook marketing partners, they all publicly advertised services that seemed to violate Instagram's rules, and a single Business Insider reporter could track them down in about a week. The historical passivity of Instagram has also created an uneven playing field for companies that trust it, with companies willing to break the rules and take advantage of an unfair advantage over those who choose to comply with Instagram policies – even if the companies provide their employees with their livelihood in the process.
The historical passivity of Instagram has also created an uneven playing field for companies that trust it, with companies willing to break the rules and take advantage of an unfair advantage over those who choose to comply with Instagram policies – even if the companies provide their employees with their livelihood in the process.
YouTube removes violent videos targeted at children. (Nick Statt / The edge)
YouTube shall not negotiating with the organizers of a YouTuber union. (Bijan Stephen / The edge)
Members of Twitter's independent Trust and Safety Council say twitter neglects the project. Look, Twitter ignores many things. Stand in line! (Louise Matsakis / Wired)
Used this online pharmacy twitter to start a scandalous campaign against CFS. (Emma Court and Lydia Ramsey / Business insider)
After breakage left Venice Beach, it was replaced by homeless camps. (Daniel Hernandez / New York Times)
is Google & # 39; s latest proposal about cookies an attempt to inform us about privacy issues? (Jonathan Mayer and Arvind Narayanan / Freedom to Tinker)
And finally …
Kareem Rahma is an Instagrammer with a wonderfully naughty Instagram gimmick. With the help of the Cameo service, with which you can pay celebrities to record short videos in which you say what you want, Rahma has had people like comedian Gilbert Gottfried read poems to make his work. He calls them & # 39; fake deepfakes & # 39; – the next shot over the bow in the war between fact and fiction.
Talk to me
Send me tips, comments, questions and more non-released items from the Facebook product roadmap: firstname.lastname@example.org.