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Meta says Trump to be allowed back on Facebook, Instagram

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Meta wants the UK to keep some EU e-commerce rules instead of scrapping them in its planned bonfire of Brussels legislation

Meta image: — © AFP INDRANIL MUKHERJEE

Glenn CHAPMAN

Social networking giant Meta announced Tuesday it would soon reinstate former president Donald Trump’s accounts on Facebook and Instagram with “new guardrails,” two years after he was banned over the 2021 US Capitol insurrection.

“We will be reinstating Mr. Trump’s Facebook and Instagram accounts in the coming weeks,” Nick Clegg, Meta’s president of global affairs, said in a statement, adding that the move would come with “new guardrails in place to deter repeat offenses.”

Going forward, the Republican leader — who has already declared himself a 2024 presidential candidate — could be suspended for up to two years for each violation of platform policies, Clegg said.

It was not clear when or if Trump will return to the platforms, and his representatives did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

But the 76-year-old tycoon reacted in typically bullish fashion, crowing that Facebook had lost “billions of dollars in value” in his absence.

“Such a thing should never again happen to a sitting President, or anybody else who is not deserving of retribution!” he said on his Truth Social platform.

Facebook banned Trump a day after the January 6, 2021 uprising, when a mob of his supporters seeking to halt the certification of his election defeat to Joe Biden stormed the US Capitol in Washington.

The former reality TV star had spent weeks falsely claiming that the presidential election was stolen from him and he was subsequently impeached for inciting the riot.

In a letter asking for the ban to be overturned, Trump’s lawyer Scott Gast said last week that Meta had “dramatically distorted and inhibited the public discourse.”

He asked for a meeting to discuss Trump’s “prompt reinstatement to the platform” of Facebook, where he had 34 million followers, arguing that his status as the leading contender for the Republican nomination in 2024 justified ending the ban.

American Civil Liberties Union executive director Anthony Romero said Meta was making “the right call” by allowing Trump back onto the social network.

“Like it or not, President Trump is one of the country’s leading political figures and the public has a strong interest in hearing his speech,” Romero said in a release.

“Indeed, some of Trump’s most offensive social media posts ended up being critical evidence in lawsuits filed against him and his administration.”

The ACLU has filed more than 400 legal actions against Trump, according to Romero.

– Extremism engine? –

Advocacy groups such as Media Matters for America, however, vehemently oppose allowing Trump to exploit Facebook’s social networking reach.

“Make no mistake — by allowing Donald Trump back on its platforms, Meta is refueling Trump’s misinformation and extremism engine,” said Media Matters president Angelo Carusone.

“This not only will have an impact on Instagram and Facebook users, but it also presents intensified threats to civil society and an existential threat to United States democracy as a whole.”

A US congressional committee recommended in December that Trump be prosecuted for his role in the US Capitol assault.

His Twitter account, which has 88 million followers, was also blocked after the riot, leaving him to communicate through Truth Social, where he has fewer than five million followers.

Trump’s shock victory in 2016 was credited in part to his leverage of social media and his enormous digital reach.

New Twitter owner Elon Musk reinstated Trump’s account last November, days after the brash billionaire announced a fresh White House run. He has yet to post.

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TikTok stars are using Fanova to generate income from social media

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TikTok stars are using Fanova to generate income from social media

Image courtesy of Fanova

Opinions expressed by Digital Journal contributors are their own.

In recent years, Latin American influencers and content creators have witnessed a remarkable surge in popularity. Despite boasting substantial and highly engaged fan bases, these influencers often find themselves in the shadows, overlooked for lucrative brand deals and partnerships. This oversight is especially pronounced, given their substantial influence over a diverse, global audience.

The moment is ripe for these creators to carve out a dedicated space where they can effectively monetize their exceptional talents. Such a platform would empower Latin American influencers and create fresh opportunities for profound collaborations and enhanced engagement with audiences worldwide.

This is where Fanova comes into play, revolutionizing the Latin American creator economy. In an environment where the creator market is still in its nascent stage, and many talented individuals remain underserved, Fanova is pioneering a new era for creators to make real money doing what they love.

Latin America’s creative minds have often found their potential hindered by a lack of opportunities. Fanova is here to break the barriers and provide a platform that allows them to monetize their content and recognize the value of their unique talents. The creator economy in the region is brimming with untapped potential, and Fanova seeks to unleash it. Creators with massive, loyal followings often find themselves unable to monetize their social media presence effectively or are overlooked by brand deals. Fanova aims to change that narrative.

With Fanova, creators have the freedom to set their monthly subscription prices, giving them the ability to provide exclusive content to their most devoted fans while ensuring a steady, reliable income month after month. Additionally, they have the flexibility to establish their own pricing for direct messages, creating a direct avenue for intimate one-on-one interactions with their followers.

By using Fanova, creators can deepen their connection with their audience by sharing a wide range of captivating content, such as behind-the-scenes glimpses, travel adventures, workout routines, insightful blogs, engaging podcasts, exclusive photos, and much more. It’s a dynamic platform that enables creators to monetize their craft and foster a stronger, more personal bond with their fan base.

Fanova is attracting top talent in the Latin American creator economy. Melissa Andress recently joined the platform. Renowned as @melissaandress on Instagram and @melipandaa on TikTok, Melissa boasts a significant and dedicated following of 1.6M and 13.7M followers, respectively. She uses Fanova to share daily behind-the-scenes of her life with her followers, treating it like a private story.

“I was immediately interested in the general concept of this platform: having a place to document behind-the-scenes content and not relying solely on brand deals seemed great to me,” Melissa explained.

Her impressive online presence has contributed to Fanova’s success in a significant way. Her engagement and credibility have introduced countless new creators and users to the platform.

Fanova is already leaving its mark in the Latin American creator economy, having attracted 150 creators. Even more impressive, Fanova has paid out over $100,000 to these creators. This is not just a promise; it’s a proven reality.

Fanova is a clean subscription platform, so nudity and explicit content is not permitted. The platform employs a team of moderators as well as artificial intelligence to monitor content.

For creators in Latin America, Fanova represents a new beginning. It’s an opportunity to be part of a transformative journey where your passion can be your paycheck. It’s a place where talent meets technology, and creators are valued. The new application is leading the charge to monetize content in Latin America, one passion at a time. For more information, visit www.fanova.io.



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Merriam-Webster’s 2023 Word of the Year

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Merriam-Webster's 2023 Word of the Year

The wordsmiths over at Merriam-Webster have announced their official “Word of the Year for 2023,” they say it’s something we are “thinking about, writing about, aspiring to, and judging more” than ever.

The word is authentic.

According to the dictionary, the most common definitions of authentic are “not false or imitation,” “being true to one’s own personality, spirit, or character,” and “worthy of acceptance or belief as conforming to or based on fact.”

Merriam-Webster says the word saw a “substantial increase” in lookups this year. That’s probably because we now live in a world where artificial intelligence, deepfake technology and questionable memes challenge our basic notions of reality.


Authenticity is also seen as a commodity at a time when influencers build their brands on social media while attempting to seamlessly pitch their “favorite” products. These days, the average person scrolls through over 43 feet of content every day on social media. After being exposed to countless images of people, it becomes easier to spot the phonies from those who are being their authentic selves.

“When we look at common threads across the thousands of influencer marketing campaigns we’ve run at The Outloud Group over the last 15 years, the similarity between all of our best-performing brand creator partnerships is pretty simple: true authenticity,” Bradley Hoos, CEO of The Outland Group, a full-service influencer marketing agency, writes in Forbes.

Merriam-Webster adds that authenticity is a trait people strove to find for themselves in 2023.

“Celebrities like singers Lainey Wilson, Sam Smith, and especially Taylor Swift all made headlines in 2023 with statements about seeking their ‘authentic voice’ and ‘authentic self,” Merriam-Webster writes. “Headlines like Three Ways To Tap Into Taylor Swift’s Authenticity And Build An Eras-Like Workplace associate this quality with pop-culture superpower.”

The dictionary also highlighted more words that trended in 2023, including:

“Rizz” — Internet slang for “romantic appeal or charm” (noun) or “to charm, seduce” (verb), popularized by YouTuber Kai Cenat, was added to the dictionary.

“Deepfake” — Altered images or recordings that convincingly misrepresent someone’s actions or words, making it hard to distinguish between real and fake.

“Coronation” — The crowning of a new British monarch, King Charles III, sent people to the dictionary’s website to learn the term’s meaning.

“Dystopian” — In 2023, “dystopian” was a verb applied to many frightening real-world issues and was used to describe the trend in video games, books and movies depicting a dark future.

“EGOT” — Lookups for “EGOT” spiked in February when Viola Davis won a Grammy for the audiobook version of her memoir. That made her one of the 18 people to become an EGOT, or winner of an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony awards.

“X” — When Twitter was rebranded as X on July 23, searches for the term spiked at Merriam-Webster.com, where curious people went to discover more about the mysterious letter.

“Implode” — When a submersible that went to visit the remains of the Titanic in June imploded, the term had a considerable spike as people attempted to learn more about the passengers’ fate.

“Doppelgänger” — This term got hot multiple times in 2023. It trended twice due to stories out of Germany and New York involving the attempted murder or suicide of someone’s lookalike. Further, September saw the release of Naomi Klein’s book, “Doppelgänger: A Trip Into the Mirror World.”



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X Experiments with New Grok AI Access Buttons In-Stream

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X Experiments with New Grok AI Access Buttons In-Stream

I’m not sure that X’s “Grok” AI chatbot is ever going to become a major element of the in-app experience. But owner Elon Musk has invested a lot into the new tool, so soon, it’ll be added to a lot more surfaces in the app, as X looks to make it a bigger enticement to get more subscribers to its X Premium+ subscription offering.

Last week, Musk noted that, soon, Grok would be available to analyze X posts in-stream.

In order to facilitate this, X is now looking to add a new Grok button to the lower function bar in the app, seemingly, at this stage a least, replacing the current Communities shortcut.

As you can see in this example, posted by X News Daily, a new Grok button may soon be displayed in prominent position, right in the middle of the bottom tray. Which would then make it easier to consult Grok for analysis of content, or potentially to assist in post creation, while there’s also another Grok tab in the sidebar, providing alternative access.

Grok chatbot

All of this is still in flux, as X works out the best placement for the option. But one way or another, Grok is coming to the main X UI, which could see a lot more content being pumped out by Elon’s sarcasm-focused AI bot, which is trained on real-time X conversation and data.

Though, presumably, access will remain limited.

Right now, Grok is only available to selected users who have subscribed to X’s highest-priced “X Premium+” monthly subscription package, which currently costs $US16 per month. X is rolling out Grok access to Premium+ subscribers based on when they signed up to the program, as it gradually expands the presence of its AI chatbot tool.

You would assume, then, that these new buttons and Grok analysis options will only be made available to those who are paying a premium for the app, though whether that’s actually worth the $US168 a year (annual plan) to gain access is another question.

But then again, millions of people have signed up to ChatGPT, and Elon seems confident that Grok will be as good, if not better than that. And in that sense, maybe Grok will prove to be a winner, which could then help X to maximize its subscription revenue intake, and broaden its income streams.

It’s impossible to say, because Grok is only in limited access, and as such, there’s not a lot of insight as to its potential value, or not, as yet.

But Elon wants to ensure that there remains a generative AI option that’s not biased, and not censored, a market gap that he believes Grok can fill. And again, given his investment in the required technology (Elon reportedly spent “tens of millions of dollars” on GPUs for his alternative AI project), he’ll also be looking to glean some return on that outlay, which will likely see X looking to make as big a push on Grok as it can to maximize interest.

Whether that’s a positive or negative, we’ll soon find out.



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