Tech News

Facebook Favors Friends Feeds, Tweaking Twitter Tackles Trolls, & More… [Tech News Digest]

Dave Parrack 22-04-2015

Facebook changes things up, Twitter tackles the trolls, YouTube stops working, Vine shares the love, celebrity Apple Watches, and the Age of Ultron trailer recreated in LEGO.

Facebook Makes It All About Your Friends

Facebook is updating the News Feed to ensure updates from your friends are favored over updates from publishers. From now on, posts published by friends will appear higher up in your News Feed Don’t Be an Experiment: How to Control Your Facebook News Feed What determines what is and isn't a top Facebook post? How often you interact with a person, topics you're interested in, how many likes or comments the post attracts, and – apparently – psychological experiments. Read More to ensure you don’t miss that oh-so-important baby picture which looks identical to the 50 that came before. This will be at the expense of posts published by Pages you follow.

Two further updates bring further changes. You will no longer see so many updates that are simply your friends Liking or commenting on someone else’s posts. It should also take a lot longer to reach the end of your News Feed, as Facebook is relaxing the rules about showing multiple updates in a row from the same source.

These changes are designed to balance out the content you see on Facebook, with friends placed higher on the pecking order. This is clearly a good thing, but it could harm publishers who share their content via Facebook. Which, when coupled with Google’s Mobilegeddon Windows 10 Release Date Revealed, Google Launches Mobilegeddon, & More... [Tech News Digest] Windows 10 set for July, Google goes mobile-friendly, Nokia is coming back, how to download your Google Search history, help search for the Loch Ness Monster, and the best fake GoPro ad ever made. Read More , could spell disaster for some websites not keeping up with the demands being placed on them by various gatekeepers.

Twitter Changes Tact to Stop Abuse

Twitter is actively tackling the problem of people using the platform to verbally abuse people Tweeting While Female: Harassment, and How Twitter Can Fix It Twitter's abuse problem is real. Here are some examples, along with expert opinion on how Twitter can solve this. Read More , threaten violence, and spread messages of hate. A couple of months after Twitter CEO Dick Costolo promised to deal with the problem, the social network has rolled out a couple of policy and product updates aimed at doing just that.

The biggest change is the introduction of a preemptive filtering system which limits the reach of tweets identified as being abusive. Those found guilty of sending messages that are contrary to Twitter’s terms of use may then have their accounts locked, tweets deleted, and/or phone number verified.

This is clearly just the start of Twitter’s fight back Twitter Fights Bullying, Indiegogo Insures Against Failure, & More... [Tech News Digest] Also, broadcast yourself on Steam, buy a new old ZX Spectrum, program the White House Christmas tree lights, and watch a documentary about Bob Pritikin. Read More against those demeaning and devaluing its service. These changes might not solve all of the abuse problems associated with Twitter, but it strongly suggests the company is taking the issue seriously, and tackling it head-on. And as we all know, admitting you have a problem is the first step towards recovery.

Your YouTube App Needs Updating

The YouTube app will no longer work on a number of older smart TVs and iOS devices after this week, with an upgrade to the YouTube Data API effectively nixing support for products made before 2012. This includes second-generation Apple TVs, and both Sony and Panasonic television sets and Blu-ray players.

Even older iPhones, iPads, and iPod Touches will be affected, but owners of these devices just need to upgrade to iOS 7 or higher to continue accessing the YouTube app 5 Unique Alternative YouTube Apps for iOS Devices When iOS 6 took the original YouTube app away, many developers scrambled to create their own versions of the video app. Of course, we now have the official Google YouTube app, but this doesn't mean... Read More . You’ll know if your hardware is affected, as the only video that will continue to work after the API upgrade will be the one embedded above.

Share Vines Everywhere All at Once

You can now share your Vine videos The Best Twitter Vine Videos Created So Far Short films can be truly amazing. Like the best short stories, short films often pack more meaning into their brief running times than full-length movies (or novels) do. There's something about the genre that compels... Read More to a number of different social networks all at once with minimal effort. This is thanks to Vine introducing a new share screen that lets you select a bunch of connected platforms at the same time. The update has already been pushed out to the iOS app, with the Android app set to get it soon.

While this may seem like a small update, Vine videos and their creators live or die by the number of times they’re shared across the Web. By focusing on this important aspect of the whole experience, Vine should be able to increase the shares, attract more users to its service, and provide content creators with a more attractive platform on which to air their wares.

The Apple Watch You Can’t Buy

While you probably shouldn’t buy an Apple Watch Read Early Apple Watch Reviews, Pay for Ad-Free YouTube, & More... [Tech News Digest] Apple Watch reviews, ad-free YouTube, Microsoft teases Redstone, Facebook Messenger on the Web, Popcorn Time on iOS, and The Legend of Zelda gets a Game of Thrones makeover. Read More at all, there exists one version of Apple’s first smartwatch which you couldn’t buy even if you wanted to. No, not the $10,000+ Apple Watch Edition, as that’s for chumps with too much cash but not enough class. This is the Celebrity-Only Apple Watch, as sported in public by both Karl Lagerfeld and Beyoncé.

It’s even more blinged-up than the Edition, with a custom link bracelet made entirely from 18-carat gold. Which means you’ll need to be accompanied by at least two bodyguards before leaving the house. Which isn’t a problem for Beyoncé, who sported this ridiculously expensive piece of tat at Coachella. Not that she wants you to know about it. Obviously. You poor proles.

The Avengers: Age of Ultron LEGO Trailer

And finally, with The Avengers: Age of Ultron almost upon us, it’s time to celebrate its release with a LEGO version of the trailer. Because, as The LEGO Movie clearly proved, LEGO ensures everything is awesome, everything is cool.

This remake of the original teaser trailer by The Brotherhood Workshop is a shot-for-shot recreation, and the level of detail makes my tiny brain hurt a little. It’s really no surprise to find this took five months to complete. [H/T CNET]

Your Views on Today’s Tech News

Do you agree with Facebook favoring your friends over publishers? Is Twitter doing enough to tackle the problem of abusive trolls? Should Apple really be giving exclusive Apple Watches away to rich celebrities?

Let us know your thoughts on the Tech News of the day by posting to the comments section below. Because a healthy discussion is always welcome.

Image Credit: Franklin Heijnen via Flickr

Explore more about: Apple Watch, Facebook, Twitter, Vine, YouTube.

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