T witter Conversations, Facebook Messaging and Thinning Profits

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Nick Cotton Aug 10, 2018

Here’s the news we’re talking about around the Zbra Studios water cooler. We’ve provided key bullet points from each article for the speed readers out there.

Twitter turns to academics to improve conversational health on the platform
By Jordan Cook From Tech Crunch
  • “In March, Twitter called for proposals from researchers to see how they might approach the issue of analytics around the types and manner of conversations on Twitter.”
  • “The first set of metrics this team is focusing on will look at the extent to which people acknowledge and engage with diverse viewpoints on Twitter. The second set of metrics will look at the difference between incivility and intolerance.”
  • “Just like any social network, Twitter provides scaffolding. Users, on the other hand, construct buildings made of dialogue. How exactly Twitter will be able to adjust the scaffolding to produce more useful, empathetic conversations is still a mystery.”
Facebook has acquired Redkix to build better messaging features into its Slack competitor
Kurt Wagner From Recode
  • “Facebook made the purchase in hopes of building out its own communication features inside Workplace, the enterprise version of Facebook that it hopes to compete with Slack.”
  • “It’s unclear how Workplace plans to integrate Redkix’s technology, although it makes sense why Facebook would want it. Workplace, which is used internally by Facebook employees, is a lot like the regular, consumer version of Facebook. That means it has features like messaging and groups, but not more traditional office features like email and calendars.”
  • “Workplace has 30,000 businesses using the product, which sounds like a significant number, but Facebook doesn’t share how many of those businesses are paying customers. And it doesn’t break out Workplace revenue on earnings reports, either.”
Why Facebook’s Thinning Profit Margins Are A Secret Asset
By Antonio Garcia Martinez from Wired
  • “Zuckerberg, whatever you might think of him, proved true to his earlier word that he’d put users and their privacy over profits. At huge corporate cost, he’s hiring an army of people to wrangle the various issues dogging the company. And Wall Street punished the company for it.”
  • “Paradoxically, though, this tumult may have strengthened Facebook’s position and made it less likely to become the next MySpace.”
  • “Beyond the cost, startups are not built to effectively moderate content, and they’ll naturally be unskilled at it. The task requires lots of expensive lawyers, well-run operational teams managed by veteran practitioners, skilled security professionals, and the like.”
  • “Much like Europe’s new privacy regime, which quickly caused some small publishers and startups to decamp from the EU and favored incumbents like Google and Facebook, regulation (almost) always benefits larger players, as they can best bear the costs.”

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