Social Media

Dubsmash is shutting down after short resurgence

Its legacy continues on Reddit

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The sudden resurrection of Dubsmash turned some heads recently. Years since its heyday, the forgotten app suddenly resurfaced to capitalize on the still-ongoing short-form video trend that TikTok started. The app’s resurgence potentially hinted at Dubsmash’s return to form. However, it looks it might not be the renaissance it was hoping for. Dubsmash will shut down early next year.

Last year, Facebook sought to acquire the platform in an attempt to compete against TikTok. Several brands and social media platforms had much to gain from successfully going for the video-sharing platform. Ultimately, Reddit acquired the company. Though Dubsmash certainly subsisted through Reddit, it hasn’t caught up with TikTok.

Now, Reddit has announced that they are shutting the platform down for good on February 22, 2022. On that date, the app will no longer be available on digital app stores. Further, it will no longer work on devices it is still installed in.

Dubsmash isn’t completely dead yet, though. Reddit is incorporating the app’s camera tools into its own photo-sharing platform. For a while now, Reddit has its own dedicated section for videos. It’s not exactly a TikTok competitor, but it does offer much of the same features. With Dubsmash’s features bolstering the platform, users can now customize their content even more.

Reddit has high hopes going forward with its improved video-sharing platform.

SEE ALSO: TikTok overtakes YouTube in hours watched

News

Facebook terminates Facial Recognition from platform

And deletes all facial profiles

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Way back when, Facebook wowed the world by automatically tagging people on photos. The platform knew exactly who’s who in a photo. Of course, that was before today’s brouhaha on user privacy. Now, the feature exudes less convenience feature and reeks more of creepy dystopian nightmare. Perhaps addressing its current controversies regarding privacy, Facebook is terminating its Facial Recognition software.

Announced in an official post, Facebook will shift away from heavy facial recognition use. The network will no longer tag people in photos. Additionally, it will also delete over a billion people’s facial profiles, signaling one of the most dramatic changes for the company. Additionally, Facebook’s automatic alt text will no longer name individuals in its descriptions.

Prior to the announcement, Facebook made its facial recognition program an opt-in feature for users back in 2019. Though the feature was still present on the network, users had to allow the program to do its work. According to Meta’s artificial intelligence vice president Jerome Pesenti, more than a third of Facebook’s users opted into the feature.

However, key to its new announcement, Facebook is merely limiting its use of recognition. The company has not revealed how much of the facial recognition software will remain. Theoretically, law enforcement agencies might still be able to force Facebook to divulge identifying information for an investigation. The report also doesn’t indicate how the current package of information was used prior to its deletion.

If anything, the decision is a step in the right direction, especially as Meta diverges away from the negative press of its network, Facebook. It also sets a precedent for other tech companies to hopefully follow.

SEE ALSO: Facebook changes name to Meta

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News

Instagram launches link stickers for everyone

Available to everyone now

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Months ago, Instagram got rid of its swipe-up feature. The now-defunct feature previously allowed content creators to link their stories to external sites. It was an invaluable tool that encouraged click-throughs. In lieu of that, Instagram introduced link stickers. Now, after an exclusive short testing period, the social media platform has opened the feature for every user.

The feature, like all Instagram stickers, will open when you access a story’s editing options. Users will be able to customize the link sticker’s color and the URL it links to. Instagram is still working on other ways to customize the sticker, but the current iteration should fulfill its purpose nicely: an easy way to link content.

Previously, Instagram released the feature for dedicated content creators of over 10,000 followers or are verified. It reflected how the original swipe-up feature worked. This time, most users, regardless of verified status and follower count, can now use the feature for themselves.

Despite opening the feature up to more users, Instagram is still enforcing some limits. “New accounts and accounts that repeatedly share things like hate speech and misinformation, or other content that violates [their] Community Guidelines” will not have access to link stickers.

SEE ALSO: Instagram is adding a “take a break” feature

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Enterprise

Facebook changes name to Meta

Thoughts on the new name?

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Meta

That’s so Meta. At Connect 2021, Facebook Founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced that the company will now be called Meta.

Under Meta will still be same family apps like Facebook, Messenger, Instagram, and WhatsApp. But there will also be their Reality Labs with Oculus, the Horizon VR platform and other VR and AR efforts which will expand Zuckerberg’s metaverse vision.

In their official release announcement, the company said “Meta’s focus will be to bring the metaverse to life and help people connect, find communities and grow businesses.”

“The metaverse will feel like a hybrid of today’s online social experiences, sometimes expanded into three dimensions or projected into the physical world.” it added.

Zuckerberg and his metaverse

On the founder’s letter, Zuckerberg shared more about his metaverse vision. He said, “The defining quality of the metaverse will be a feeling of presence — like you are right there with another person or in another place.”

Zuckerberg previously demonstrated this with all of their VR and AR efforts with Oculus.

Meta

“In the metaverse, you’ll be able to do almost anything you can imagine — get together with friends and family, work, learn, play, shop, create — as well as completely new experiences that don’t really fit how we think about computers or phones today,” he added.

Zuckerberg insists that the metaverse won’t be created by Meta alone. He said it will be “built by creators and developers making new experiences and digital items” to “unlock a massively larger creative economy than the one constrained by today’s platforms and their policies.”

Misinformation hub

The announcement comes on the heels of whistleblower Frances Haugen detailing the dangers that the platform enables in the real world.

Facebook’s reputation is rapidly crashing down. For quite a while now, the social media platform has defended itself against claims of misinformation and anti-trust. However, though the company is holding its own in the courtroom, Facebook is now facing another internal battle. A Facebook whistleblower has revealed how consciously dangerous the platform is, especially in other countries.

Speaking to CBS’s “60 Minutes,” Haugen says the platform is more harmful in countries where there are no robust misinformation regulations. She noted how the lack of protection and fact-checking can lead to death.

“In a village in Africa, someone will send in a picture of a massacre that is allegedly happening in the next village and say, ‘grab your guns, come save your cousins,’” Haugen said.

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