- The Scoop: In the wake of Cambridge Analytica, Facebook has announced that “around 200 apps” have been suspended. Facebook has been investigating “apps that had access to large amounts” of data through conducting interviews with developers, requesting information about the app and the data it has access to, along with audits “that may include on-site inspections” to determine whether user data was misused. Should the site identify additional apps that have abused access to user data, Facebook will immediately ban them and notify users.
- The Scoop: In light of Google’s recent announcement to focus on digital well-being, Google-owned YouTube has released a “take a break” reminder feature. Users can choose whether they’d like to receive an alert reminder to take a break “never” or every 15, 30, 60, 90, or 180 minutes. YouTube has also added a new setting for a “scheduled digest” that combines all individual notifications from the app (alerts for new videos from subscribed accounts, etc.) into a single list that’s delivered at a select time of day. This feature is available on the latest version of the app for Android or iOS users.
- The Scoop: Instagram CEO, Kevin Systrom, has confirmed that the team is a building “Usage Insights” feature that will show users their “time spent” on the app. It’s unclear if these usage insights will provide the total amount of time spent on Instagram ever, or if it will be represent a shorter time frame like a day, week, or month. Systrom explains that Instagram wants to “be part of the solution” in helping people understand how time online impacts their lives.
- The Scoop: Canon partnered with approximately 22,000 social media influencers to take photos of small business across Scandinavia for Google’s Local Guides platform. The idea is to help these small businesses boost their image on the platform alongside larger companies with the resources to provide higher quality photos that attract customers. With 27,000 high-quality photos captured with Canon cameras, 43% of the small businesses involved experienced a sales increase. As a result of this campaign Google even change its algorithm to favor photos with good lighting and composition, bringing these businesses to the top of the local search results.
- The Scoop: KFC has released 25 limited-edition ‘Kentucky Fine China’ buckets in celebration of the royal wedding. These handmade pottery buckets, which feature a 22 carat gold rim, are available for giveaway on the chain’s Colonel Club app through May 20th. Additionally, on the Royal Wedding day itself, KFC will also release 50 limited edition cardboard commemorative buckets available at a Windsor restaurant in the UK.
The Scoop: The internet has become divided over whether listeners hear the words “yanny” or “laurel” in an audio clip on vocabulary.com page for “laurel” — the word for a wreath worn on the head. In response, The New York Times has built a slider tool that allows users to accentuate different frequencies in the original audio clip to hear both yanny and laurel. As higher frequencies are amplified using the tool, listeners are more likely to hear yanny, while the amplification of lower frequencies makes it easier to hear laurel. The news outlet hopes that this tool helps people understand what causes the debate on the featured audio clip.