August 2023 Social Platform Updates

This is a monthly newsletter about social platform updates and new features. To receive Social Navigator in your inbox each month, subscribe here.

TikTok rolled out search ads. X lowered its requirements for ad revenue sharing. Snap launched generative AI selfies. And Triller filed for an IPO.

Here's everything you missed from social platforms last month...

Facebook 👍

✦ Ended news availability in Canada after new legislation passed requiring tech companies to pay news publishers for using their content.

✦ Will soon offer Stories and Reels in chronological order to comply with the European Union’s Digital Services Act.

✦ Released a generative AI tool for editing music and audio called Audiocraft.

✦ Users can now fill out a form to prevent their personal information from being used to train generative AI models.

Instagram 📷

✦ Researchers discovered a "Meta Verified" feed filter in Instagram's code, but Meta has denied actively testing such a feature.

✦ Enabled users to add music to photo carousels.

✦ Updated Collabs to now support up to three co-authors.

✦ Testing an option for users to add images and videos to an existing post, in order to facilitate more collaborations and participatory content.

✦ Experimenting with 10-min long Reels.

LinkedIn 🤝

✦ Added multiple reactions to collaborative articles (no longer just upvotes).

✦ Discontinued certain notifications to reduce unnecessary alerts.

✦ Released a smoother editing and publishing tool for articles.

✦ Enabled users to manage up to 5 newsletters (previously only one).

✦ Added a brand partnership label for sponsored posts.

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Snapchat 👻

✦ EU users can now opt out of personalization features in Spotlight and Snapchat Discover in order to comply with the EU’s Digital Services Act.

✦ Launched generative AI selfies called Dreams.

✦ Announced a new rewards program for AR Lens creators.

Substack ✍️

✦ Added a follow button, so you can track an author without subscribing to the author's newsletter.

✦ Released an AI-powered audio transcription tool to automatically generate scripts for podcast episodes uploaded to the platform.

Threads 🧵

✦ Testing keyword search in Australia and New Zealand.

✦ Enabled users to see their liked posts.

✦ Added sorting options for your following list (by default, latest first, and earliest first).

✦ Rolled out an option to share posts to Instagram DMs.

✦ Released custom alt text for images and videos.

✦ Added a new mention button.


✦ Launched PrivacyGo, a privacy tool to improve how advertisers match their content with audiences.

✦ Announced a music competition called Gimme The Mic held via TikTok livestreams.

✦ Rolling out labels for creators to disclose AI-generated content.

✦ Reportedly working on an integration with Lemon8 to share posts between apps.

✦ Enabled advertisers to place ads on the TikTok search results page.

✦ Announced plans to sunset Shopify storefronts and reportedly going to ban links to external e-commerce sites like Amazon, forcing people to use TikTok Shop.

✦ Launched a European Online Safety Hub and enabled users to turn off personalization in their feeds to comply with the EU’s Digital Services Act.

✦ Rolled out Effect House v3.0, which includes new gen AI tools like asset studio and generative effects.

✦ Expanded its Creativity Program Beta to more countries including Japan, Korea, Great Britain, and Germany.

Triller 🎵

✦ Filed for an IPO on the NYSE.

Twitch 🎮

✦ Relaxed its rules about simulcasting.

✦ Enabled users to prevent blocked or banned users from viewing their streams starting in September.

X 🐦

✦ Announced it won’t take a cut of creator subscriptions until the creator earns $100K in lifetime revenue, at which point X will take 10% of earnings.

✦ Reversed its policy on political advertising, allowing political ads that meet certain guidelines.

✦ Reportedly plans to stop showing article headlines or text in links.

✦ Enabled verified businesses to post job listings, perhaps in an effort to compete with LinkedIn.

✦ Announced an upcoming “Sensitivity Settings” control, which will use machine learning to reduce a brand’s proximity to hate speech, profanity, and spam.

✦ Lowered the requirements for ad revenue sharing from 15M to 5M impressions in the last 3 months, and reduced the minimum payout from $50 to $10.

✦ Removing the option to block unwanted followers, so users can only mute and block unwanted followers in DMs, not the main feed.

YouTube 🎥

✦ Testing AI-generated video summaries.

✦ Launched a collab tool for Shorts, allowing creators to record a Short in a side-by-side view with another video.

✦ Announced a Music AI incubator in partnership with Universal Music.

✦ Removed the ability to link websites in Shorts comments, descriptions, and the vertical live feed to prevent harmful links and malware.

✦ Enabled creators to link Shorts to long-form videos.

✦ Experimenting with a mobile-first vertical live experience.

✦ Made it possible to save Shorts to playlists.

✦ Testing recomposition tools to transform horizontal videos into Shorts.

✦ Introduced a personalized short-form video feed called Samples to YouTube Music.

✦ Launched an education course for creators to get their accounts reinstated after policy violations.

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