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Andy's Round-Up: Payments via WhatsApp, and regulation for algorithms?

Andy3rd February 2020

LinkedIn sees record levels of engagement

🤔 What happened?

Microsoft reports that LinkedIn received 'record levels of engagement' over the last three months of 2019.

💡 My take

LinkedIn Microsoft have announced record levels of engagemnt through LinkedIn. It's not a massive surprise because if anyone's been using LinkedIn regularly (like us) you would have seen fantastic organic growth. LinkedIn is really the darling of organic engagement at the moment. Now, also in line with this, LinkedIn announced a 15 million user growth from last quarter to this quarter. So not only is engagement really increasing, but we're also seeing user numbers increase as well which is awesome news.

LinkedIn brings Elevate and Company Pages together

🤔 What happened?

LinkedIn announced that it is merging its Elevate employee advocacy platform with Company Pages.

💡 My take

The second update from LinkedIn is also great news. They're taking their Elevate product and their Company Pages and merging them together. For those of you not familiar with what Elevate is, it's a way for Company Page owners to share content with their employees that are also on LinkedIn to kind of proliferate that content and really engender this employee advocacy thing that we've been championing heavily. So the merging of those two products means that Elevate functionality becomes free, meaning that we're gonna see better engagement on LinkedIn. This is going to roll out to everyone by the end of 2020.

Earn money on WhatsApp using Payments feature

🤔 What happened?

WhatsApp is preparing to roll out a new feature which lets you earn money from right inside the app.

💡 My take

Once again we have another update from WhatsApp. Last week we saw that they canned ads, on a backlash ultimately. This week, before we saw that they're announcing 'Catalogs' for businesses to help consumers interact with businesses in an easier way, WhatsApp are now releasing WhatsApp Pay to allow transactions through the product. I think this is going to be a really important play for them because we're certainly seeing, as we discussed last week, that they're heading towards a business to consumer play. Imagine that someone would be able to interact with a business on WhatsApp messenger and then pay that business for a certain product or service - this makes for an amazing consumer experience.

Facebook's 'Clear History' is now available to everyone

🤔 What happened?

On top of clearing your browsing history, the new tool also includes options to review your information by category, download all or part of it and choose how your off-Facebook activity should be managed in the future.

💡 My take

Facebook have announced that the 'Clear History' option is now available for everyone. This is a fantastic way for you to maintain control of your data. This update comes two whole years after they initially announced it. Now it's finally out.

Algorithms on social media need regulation, says UK's AI advisor

🤔 What happened?

New regulation should be passed to control the algorithms that promote content such as posts, videos and adverts on social networks, the UK government’s advisory body on AI ethics has recommended.

💡 My take

In line with privacy as well, is that a recent article in The Guardian says that the Center for Data Ethics and Integrity are pushing for greater and regulation of social media platforms in the UK. This Center for Data Ethics and Innovation (catchy title) believe that the social media channels have too much power at the moment in controlling who can see what and when. Therefore, they're calling for better regulation and increased transparency over how these algorithms work and what's being shared. I think this is great news for the industry in general and I support it. However, at the same time, this is just talk and noise at the moment so we've yet to see anything being firmed up. Expect a lot more of that in 2020.

Andy does a round-up of social media news every week. Connect with Andy on LinkedIn to get it first.

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