Cassandra Megraw, 24 Dec 2018

Week in social: 2018’s dankest memes, Twitter’s sparkle button, and Snapchat’s Lens Challenge

Fondest meme-ries of 2018

As human beings with access to the internet, we all know that it’s simply not the end of the year without the release of various ‘best of’ lists. But hey, they’re popular for a reason and we’re here for it. At the risk of losing you to the endless depths of internet meme-ry, we’d like to kick this week’s Week in Social off by sharing this exhaustive list of best memes of 2018. From “weird flex but ok” to Jay Z on a Jet Ski to “don’t say it” to Squinting Woman, it’s got it all. Because social. Because the internet. Because the end of the year.

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Read more at Complex

Twitter lets users sparkle

The People vs Twitter Algorithm war has raged on long enough, it would seem, with Twitter officially raising its white flag in the form of the ‘sparkle button’, which allows users to switch between the reverse chronological and the algorithmic timelines. As of this week, all iOS users have access to the button (which sits at the top right of the screen), and Android and desktop users will be able to sparkle in January. While Twitter has made it clear that its algorithmic ‘Top Tweets’ timeline has increased engagement as well as conversation, this move shows that it’s listening to the naysayers (for now).

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Read more at TechCrunch

Messaging apps the next frontier for advertisers

Advertising is set to venture even further in 2019, with messaging app advertising becoming even more of a ‘thing’ – and a big thing at that. Advertising typically follows the advertiser wherever they might go (sometimes surprisingly so), and since people are keeping connected over messaging apps more than ever, this is the next big step for marketers. Messaging apps like Facebook’s Messenger, Snapchat and Twitter all have ad formats as part of their messaging experience, and monetizing messaging is set to grow as a focus as digital advertising matures – especially with data showing that mobile web brings $10 billion in ad spend in the U.S. alone, and yet customers spend even more time on messaging apps than mobile web. From chatbots and texts to AR shopping experiences, the opportunity for advertisers to reach out and connect through conversational, creative and friendly content is as exciting as it is timely.

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Read more at Digiday

Snapchat dares you to take part in Lens Challenges

Ever wanted to play a game of truth or dare only minus the dare and on Snapchat? Wish granted (and just in time for the holidays)! Snapchat’s new Lens Challenges feature lets users dare others to take on various tasks, all with a lens to match. The photo-sharing app has told Deadline the challenges are meant to “inspire creativity, self-expression, and community for Snapchatters and Lens Creators alike.” After a drop in monthly active users by two million to 186 million last quarter, it’ll be interesting to see if this new offering can help bolster numbers and get more people snapping again.

Read more at Engadget

Facebook may be working on a soon-to-be cryptocurrency

Bitcoin, step aside – Facebook may very well be developing its own cryptocurrency. Bloomberg recently reported that the tech powerhouse is developing what’s called a “stablecoin” – a currency that’s tied to the US dollar (meaning more stability) that will give its users a way to transfer money via its WhatsApp service. With 200 million users in India, Bloomberg has said Facebook will likely launch the currency there, though it is reportedly still ironing out the strategy and how it intends to protect its stablecoin’s value.

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Read more at Bloomberg