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Facebook Adds New Star Wars-Themed Features to Messenger

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With the new Star Wars film ‘The Rise of Skywalker’ set for release next week, Facebook has added a set of Star Wars-themed features in Messenger to help fans celebrate what looks to be the final installment of the epic series.

Facebook Star Wars effects

As you can see here, the main element of the update is a new set of AR effects, which you can use in Messenger video calls or post to Messenger Stories. Which also means you can post them to Facebook Stories, though only via Messenger – and you can then re-share them to your Instagram Story (by saving the video and re-posting).

The effects are explained by Facebook:

“Jump into hyperspace and travel to a whole new world with the Lightspeed Effect. Then, you’ll be able to see yourself as part of the Resistance, gliding through the galaxies in Poe Dameron’s X-Wing with the Cockpit Effect. And don’t forget about the battle of the Dark vs. Light side of the Force! Now, you can use the Dark vs. Light Effect to choose your side.” 

Facebook’s also added new themes, emojis and stickers – including an interesting, starry background theme for your message threads.

Facebook Star Wars

The visuals were designed in partnership with Disney, and provide a fun way for users to get more engaged in the Star Wars hype one last time.

Well, last time for now – you know there’ll be more Star Wars movies rolling out till the end of time, or until they stop making money. The timeline for either occurrence is roughly the same. 

You can use the AR effects as normal within your Messenger options, and:

To turn on the Star Wars chat theme, open a Messenger thread and tap the name of the thread at the top to open the thread settings. Then, select “theme” where you’ll find the Star Wars chat theme.”

The updates are live in Messenger from today.

Socialmediatoday.com

SOCIAL

Twitter utökar innehållsrekommendationer, visar användare fler tweets från profiler de inte följer

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Twitter Expands Content Recommendations, Showing Users More Tweets from Profiles They Don’t Follow

Suddenly seeing a heap more random accounts appear in your Twitter feed?

This is why – today, Twitter ramped up its tweet recommendations for a heap more users.

So you’re going to see more tweets in your feed based on things like:

  • Interests based on tweet activity
  • Topics you follow
  • Tweets you’ve engaged with
  • Tweets people in your network like
  • People followed by people you follow

There’s a heap of expanded exposure potential here, and Twitter, in an effort to juice engagement, is looking to keep people in the app for as long as possible, which, ideally, these recommendations will facilitate.

It’s similar to how Facebook and Instagram are now showing you more AI-based content recommendations, which stems from TikTok, and its focus on highlighting the most relevant content to each user, which is not directly tied to your own social graph.

There was a time when your social graph was the defining factor, which gave Facebook a huge advantage, but now, there’s been a bigger shift towards entertainment over social interaction, which expands the potential to show each user more interesting content, from a much broader range of sources.

Conceptually it makes sense, but it’s largely reliant on the platform algorithms being actually good at showing you the best content, based on your interests. TikTok is very good at this, hooking into your expressed likes and dislikes based on your viewing history.

Twitter, however, not so much.

In my experience, Twitter’s recommended topics are always pretty far off, and even within those topics, the tweets it highlights tend to also be off-topic, uninteresting, and even just weird a lot of the time.

Right now, Twitter seems convinced that I’m interested in ‘AirBnB’, ‘skönhet Influencers’ and ‘Blink 182’. I’m not interested in any of these things, which I’ve tried to tell Twitter’s algorithms by selecting the ‘Not interested in this topic’ option – yet every time I re-open the app, they’re on my Explore page once again.

It could be worse – last month it was showing me ‘Peanuts’ comics, so I had Charlie Brown’s massive head staring back at me every time I tapped over to the Explore tab.

Again, I’ve directly told Twitter that I’m not interested, but it keeps showing them to me, while today, after this new announcement, this is what my feed currently looks like:

And they just keep coming – every time I scroll back to the top, another 20 tweets are in my feed, with 80% being recommendations.

Look, this is probably a short-term push, and maybe it helps people discover new users to follow, and helps Twitter boost engagement. But again, if you’re seeing a heap more recommendations, this is why.

Hopefully, the feedback will help Twitter refine its topic and content streams.  



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