September 20, 2018 By Zak Mehan
Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff is buying Time Magazine from Meredith Corp, following fellow tech billionaires Jeff Bezos, Laurene Powell Jobs and Patrick Soon-Shiong, who purchased the Washington Post, The Atlantic and the Los Angeles Times and San Diego Union-Tribune, respectively.
As Axios notes, the right backing can revive print brands. Mr. Bezos offers, perhaps, the most successful example, so let’s remind ourselves of the two key critical but unsurprising prongs guiding the strategy that every company should include in its communications strategy: analytics and content.
Arc Publishing, the platform initial built for the WaPo, is a publishing platform with fully-integrated analytics capabilities, that have been deployed to run effective paywall campaigns by analyzing the most popular content, key traffic drivers to the site, devices used and a myriad of other indicators to better personalize the content offering.
And the WaPo hired an army of new digital-savvy reporters to focus on digital content creation. Quantity was a key focus, but we’ve also seen some standout interactive design work from the publication as well – this interactive infographic on mass shootings woven throughout a narrative piece has stuck in our minds.
From a massage (no joke), Benioff said he would not be wading into ongoing operations but we’d be surprised if there aren’t any changes made. We’ll see whether he follows the WaPo’s example or has a few tricks of his own up his sleeve that can be emulated.
A report from Stanford University, New York University and Microsoft Research found that engagement with content from a sample of 570 fake news sites dropped by 50 percent since 2017 when Facebook began a concerted effort to fight fake news on the platform. While this result is said to be “far from definitive”, it is a positive sign so far.
One potential gap the researchers have pointed out in many social media networks’ efforts to curb fake news is the proliferation of image and video content that is harder to track. Facebook is boosting its efforts there, using reverse image searching to identify images and videos as either “Manipulated or fabricated”, “Out of context” or “Text or audio claim”. If this is successful, Facebook will be setting a fast pace for other social networks to combat fake news.
As well as protecting users from fake news, Facebook has expanded security tools to protect political campaigns. These include adding two-factor authentication upon sign in and increased monitoring for hacking attempts. The midterm elections this fall are serving as a good test for Facebook’s new security features, so we’ll continue to watch.
For people who use Twitter for the news, the shift away from a chronological feed was frustrating, reducing the platform’s effectiveness for tracking fast-moving events in almost real time. Twitter has heard the frustration and will soon let users toggle between chronological and ranked feeds.
Further beefing up its news offering, Twitter is also now placing live broadcasts from accounts you follow – such as BuzzFeed’s AM to DM and Bloomberg’s TicToc at the top of your feed. The new feature is reportedly to help provide users with breaking news updates and sports…stuff.
And while those changes would be big but familiar, Twitter is also testing out something completely new to the platform – up and downvotes. Reddit is the most successful platform to introduce this feature after Facebook, instead, opted for Reactions. Expanding engagement options on Twitter could be a good way to increase engagement on the platform overall and add an important opportunity for analytics.
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Bustle Owner Plans to Double Down on Gawker WSJ
As if the beating from the Cowboys over the weekend wasn’t bad enough, now Giants fans will have a reminder of it as yet another Eli Manning meme is born.