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Twitter Previews Coming NFT Display Options for Profile Images

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After sharing an initial preview of its coming NFT display option last month, Twitter has now shared some new insight into its in-development NFT showcase process, which will eventually enable Twitter users to share their NFTs with direct connection back to the ownership status of each.

As you can see in this example, posted by Twitter engineer Ethan Sutin, the new Twitter NFT display process will enable users to connect their NFT details into their image feed, which will then let profile visitors look up the info on any NFT that you use, providing direct assurance of ownership, and leaning into the rising NFT movement.

Which, confusingly at times, is rapidly rising, with people ‘investing’ thousands, even millions of dollars into still drawings that don’t really seem like art in the traditional sense.

In all honestly and transparency, I don’t really get the whole NFT thing.

I mean, I get the concept, and I understand the opportunities that they can create for digital artists, and the expansion of art investing, which could end up providing a lifeline for many creators who are looking to spend more time on their craft.

But when I see that this image of a cartoon monkey sold for the equivalent of $3.4 million, it does hurt my head a little bit.

Bored Ape example

This is a rare NFT from the Bored Ape Yacht Club collection – rare because the ape is gold, and there are apparently not many apes in this color variant.

But it’s just a picture, right? And really, not a very good one, from a craft perspective. That’s not to denigrate the artists involved, but when you consider what’s traditionally considered to be fine art that would command such a high price, and the careful brush strokes and techniques used to create those timeless images – the sheer time and effort involved in painting, say, the Mona Lisa or Monet’s waterlilies. By comparison, this hand-drawn picture doesn’t really match up. Right?

Of course, art is subjective, and whether an individual likes a piece or not is irrelevant, because as long as there’s a person, or people, willing to pay for it, the value is what the market dictates. But I see this with most of these NFT images, craft-wise, that they’re not much better than what a teenager might doodle on their notepad when they’re bored in class.

Maybe that, in itself, is part of the appeal, but I struggle to imagine that in ten or twenty years’ time, that these artworks will still be highly valued, which makes the ‘investment’ element questionable in my mind.

The other aspect that can be confusing is NFT ownership – how do you ‘own’ a digital art work that anyone can re-use, or re-share, with limited legal recourse?

For paintings and physical art, you have the actual piece, the canvas that the artist touched and worked on, and there’s only one in existence. But for digital art, there is no physical copy, so you ‘owning’ this piece and me, for example, owning a fake is actually no different at all, there’s no differentiation in what the art work actually is (though depending on the purchase agreement, the owner may be able to stop re-productions).

That’s one aspect that Twitter’s new NFT display could help to address – by providing the full details of each NFT, users would technically only be able to display art that they officially own, or it would be totally transparent in the case that they didn’t. This is arguably the most important element of this new project, and it could help ensure that artists get paid for their work, and the usage of such, by exposing those looking to fake it for NFT community cred.

Which is a real thing. The NFT movement is gradually taking over social media, and as more profile images switch to cartoonish depictions, of various form, it is definitely worth the platforms themselves looking into how they can best facilitate such, and fuel further engagement to lean into the next big art shift.

Which NFTs definitely are, whether I get them or not. Respected art house Southeby’s has already made NFTs a key focus, and as more collectors get involved in the NFT community, the movement continues to grow, and looks set to get much, much bigger as we move into the metaverse.

As such, Twitter’s new NFT project makes sense – and while I don’t know that I’ll ever get why people are paying hundreds of thousands of dollars for images like this hand-drawn parrot by Gary Vaynerchuck.

Gary Vanerchuck MFT

Like, who has that kind of cash and will this really appreciate in value?

Regardless of my misgivings, there’s very clearly significant opportunity here, which could spark whole new engagement and growth opportunities in social apps.

Socialmediatoday.com

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Snap making changes to direct response advertising business

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Snap making changes to direct response advertising business

The company posted a net loss of $288.5 million, or 18 cents a share, including $34 million in charges from its workforce restructuring. That compared to a profit of $23 million, or one cent, a year earlier.

Snap ended the fourth quarter with 375 million daily users, a 17% increase. In the first three months of the year, the company estimates 382 million to 384 million people will use its platform daily.

Snap has become a bellwether for other digital advertising companies. Last year, it was the first to raise concerns about the slowdown in marketer spending online and to fire a significant number of employees—20% of its workforce—to cut costs in the face of falling revenue.

The company has spent the last two quarters refocusing the organization, cutting projects that don’t contribute to user and revenue growth.

In the first quarter, Snap expects the environment to “remain challenging as we expect the headwinds we have faced over the past year to persist.”

Investors will get additional information about the state of the digital ad market when Meta and Alphabet report earnings later this week.

—Bloomberg News

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Twitter Outlines New Platform Rules Which Emphasize Reduced Reach, as Opposed to Suspensions

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Twitter Outlines New Platform Rules Which Emphasize Reduced Reach, as Opposed to Suspensions

After reinstating thousands of previously suspended accounts, as part of new chief Elon Musk’s ‘amnesty’ initiative, Twitter has now outlined how it will be enforcing its rules from now on, which includes less restrictive measures for some violations.

As explained by Twitter:

“We have been proactively reinstating previously suspended accounts […] We did not reinstate accounts that engaged in illegal activity, threats of harm or violence, large-scale spam and platform manipulation, or when there was no recent appeal to have the account reinstated. Going forward, we will take less severe actions, such as limiting the reach of policy-violating Tweets or asking you to remove Tweets before you can continue using your account.”

This is in line with Musk’s previously stated ‘freedom of speech, not freedom of reach’ approach, which will see Twitter leaning more towards leaving content active in the app, but reducing its impact algorithmically, if it breaks any rules.

Which means a lot of tweets that would have previously been deemed violative will now remain in the app, and while Musk notes that no ads will be displayed against such content, that could be difficult to enforce, given the way the tweet timeline functions.

But it does align with Musk’s free speech approach, and reduces the onus on Twitter, to some degree, in moderating speech. It will still need to assess each instance, case-by-case, but users themselves will be less aware of penalties – though Musk has also flagged adding more notifications and explainers to outline any reach penalties as well.

“Account suspension will be reserved for severe or ongoing, repeat violations of our policies. Severe violations include but are not limited to: engaging in illegal content or activity, inciting or threatening violence or harm, privacy violations, platform manipulation or spam, and engaging in targeted harassment of our users.

Which still means that a lot of content that these users had been suspended for previously would still result in suspension now, and it leaves a lot up to Twitter management in allocating severity of impact in certain actions.

How do you definitively measure threats of violence or harm, for example? Former President Donald Trump was sanctioned under this policy, but many, including Musk, were critical of Twitter’s decision to do so, given that Trump is an elected representative.

In other nations, too, Twitter has been pressured to remove tweets under these policies, and it’ll be interesting to see how Twitter 2.0 handles such, given its stated more lax approach to moderation, despite its rules remaining largely the same.

Already, questions have been raised on this front – Twitter recently removed links to a BBC documentary that’s critical of the Indian Government, at the request of India’s PM. Twitter hasn’t offered any official explanation for the action, but with Musk also working with the Indian Government to secure partnerships for his other business, Tesla, questions have been raised as to how he will manage both impacts concurrently.

In essence, Twitter’s approach has changed when it chooses to do so, but the rules, as such, will effectively be governed by Musk himself. And as we’ve already seen, he will make drastic rules changes based on personal agendas and experience.

Twitter says that, starting February 1st, any previously suspended users will be able to appeal their suspension, and be evaluated under its new criteria for reinstatement.

It’s also targeting February for a launch of its new account penalties notifications.



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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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