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EU Regulators Warn TikTok that it Needs to Update its Systems in Line with New Laws, or Face a Ban

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EU Regulators Warn TikTok that it Needs to Update its Systems in Line with New Laws, or Face a Ban

Regulatory pressure continues to rise for TikTok, with the EU now warning the app that it will need to adhere with its laws and regulations, or risk being banned from the region entirely.

As you can see in this tweet, EU Internal Market Commissioner Thierry Breton met with TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew this morning to discuss the app’s obligations in the region, specifically in regard to the protection of young users.

Breton informed Chew that TikTok will come under specific scrutiny when the EU’s new Digital Services Act (DSA) kicks in in September, which includes new provisions for the protection of users, and specifically young users, in regards to content, data usage, and more.

Breton further informed Chew that if the new rules were in place already, TikTok would likely be in violation of them as it stands today.

Breton explained that it is not acceptable that TikTok users can access ‘harmful and sometimes even life-threatening content’ within seconds in the app. If that situation stands, Breton says that TikTok could indeed face a full ban in the EU, adding more pressure to the app to update and evolve its processes in line with developing regional requirements.

TikTok, which is already facing a potential ban in the US over its potential connection to the Chinese Government, says that it’s committed to meeting the requirements of the DSA, as well as Europe’s GDPR, and that it’s on track to improve its systems in line with all requirements.

But it’s another threat to the app’s dominant run in the space, which could potentially see TikTok face restrictions, and even bans, around the world, as more regulators dig deeper into the app’s impact, and linkage to outside influences.

Last month, an investigation found that China-based staff from TikTok’s parent company ByteDance had used the app to spy on American journalists, as part of an initiative to uncover potential leakers within its staff ranks. Which is exactly what various US security officials have warned about – that TikTok, which is under the control of Chinese management, has access to sensitive user data in foreign nations, which could be used, by TikTok or potentially by the CCP, in efforts to monitor and gather information on users.

TikTok has been working to distance itself from this, which includes a multi-million dollar plan to separate US user data from its China-based staff. But thus far, those concerns have not been abated, with a growing number of US states now banning TikTok from official devices, and calls increasing for the White House to take action against the app.

European officials also have their concerns, and with these new laws coming into place, which will push TikTok to implement more measures to stop users stumbling into harmful topic areas, that’ll put even more pressure on the company to update its systems, which will cost more in engineering and manual monitoring to keep the app in line.

But could TikTok really be banned?

Breton himself is developing a habit of making a public show of keeping social platform management in line, but thus far, the EU has not banned any apps for violations of its evolving rules.

That’s not to say it won’t happen, but it does feel like more of a public push to add pressure, than a genuine effort, at this stage, that will threaten the app.

But it’s just one aspect, and there may well be other concerns around TikTok that could result in more regulatory action against the app.

A lot depends on Chinese foreign relations, and how the CCP deals with other nations. Any shift in posture could prompt a re-think of such, which could indeed see TikTok banned in more places in 2023.



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4 new social media features you need to know about this week

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New social media features to know this week


Social media never stands still. Every week there are new features — and it’s hard for the busy comms pro to stay up-to-date on it all.

We’ve got you covered.

Here’s what you need to know about this week.

LinkedIn

Social media sleuth Matt Navarra reported on Twitter that LinkedIn will soon make the newsletters you subscribe to through the site visible to other users.

This should aid newsletter discovery by adding in an element of social proof: if it’s good enough for this person I like and respect, it’s good enough for me. It also might be anopportunity to get your toe in the water with LinkedIn’s newsletter features.

Instagram

After admitting they went a little crazy on Reels and ignored their bread and butter of photographs, Instagram continues to refine its platform and algorithm. Although there were big changes over the last few weeks, these newer changes are subtler but still significant.

 

 

First, the animated avatars will be more prominent on profiles. Users can now choose to flip between the cartoony, waving avatar and their more traditional profile picture, rather than picking one or the other, TechCrunch reported, seemingly part of a push to incorporate metaverse-esque elements into the app.

Instagram also appears to have added an option to include a lead form on business profiles. We say “appears” because, as Social Media Today reports, the feature is not yet listed as an official feature, though it has rolled out broadly.

The feature will allow businesses to use standard forms or customize their own, including multiple choice questions or short answer.

Twitter

In the chaotic world of Twitter updates, this week is fairly staid — with a useful feature for advertisers.

The platform will roll out the ability to promote tweets among search results. As Twitter’s announcement points out, someone actively searching for a term could signal stronger intent than someone merely passively scrolling a feed.

Which of these new features are you most interested in? That LinkedIn newsletter tool could be great for spreading the word — and for discovering new reads.

Allison Carter is executive editor of PR Daily. Follow her on Twitter or LinkedIn.

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Twitter Tests Expanded Emoji Reaction Options in DMs

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Twitter Tests Expanded Emoji Reaction Options in DMs

Twitter’s looking to give users a broader set of emoji reactions for their DMs, while also, potentially, enabling personalization of your quick reactions display in the app.

As you can see in these mock-ups, shared by Twitter designer Andrea Conway, Twitter’s testing a new search option within the reaction pop-up in DMs which would enable you to use any other emoji as a reaction to a message.

An extension of this would also be the capacity to update the reactions that are immediately displayed to whatever you choose.

Twitter DM reactions

It’s not a game-changer by any means, but it could provide more ways to interact via DMs, and with more interactions switching to messaging, and more private exchanges, it could be a way for Twitter to better lean into this trend, and facilitate a broader array of response options in-stream.

Twitter’s working on a range of updates as it looks to drive more engagement and usage, including tweet view counts, updated Bookmarks, a new ‘For You’ algorithm, and more. Elon Musk has said that he can envision Twitter reaching a billion users per month by next year, but for that to happen, the platform needs to update its systems to show people more of what they like, and keep them coming back – which is what all of these smaller updates, ideally, build to in a broader approach.

But that’s a pretty steep hill to climb.

Last week, Twitter reported that it’s now up to 253 million daily active users, an increase on the 238 million that it reported in July last year. Daily and monthly active usage is not directly comparable, of course, but when Twitter was reporting monthly actives, its peak was around 330 million, back in 2019.

Twitter MAU chart

As noted in the chart, Twitter switched from reporting monthly active users to daily actives in 2019, but looking at the two measurements, it’s hard to imagine that Twitter’s monthly active usage is any more than 100m over its current DAU stats.

That means that Twitter has likely never reached more than 350 million active users – yet Musk believes that he can best that by close to 200% in a matter of months.

Seems unlikely – even at current growth rates since Musk took over at the app, Twitter would only be looking at around 500 million users, optimistically, by the end of 2024.

If it can maintain that. More recent insight from Twitter has suggested that user activity has declined since those early post-Musk purchase highs – but maybe, through a range of updates and tweaks, there could be a way for Musk and Co. to maximize usage growth, beyond what seems possible, based on the stats.

We’ll find out, and as it pushes for that next level, you can expect to see more updates and tweaks like this, with enhanced engagement in mind.  



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Tarte Influencer Marketing Criticized 01/31/2023

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Tarte Influencer Marketing Criticized 01/31/2023

With consumers obsessed over the price of a dozen eggs, could conspicuous consumption-driven influencer marketing falling out of favor? That is the question brands might be considering after the
backlash that cosmetics brand Tarte is receiving after a sponsored trip to Dubai. “Influencers were called out for appearing not …

Read the whole story at Marketing Brew »



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