YouTube rolls out a short-video ad tool for small businesses

YouTube is introducing a new tool that would allow small business owners to create video ads in the least possible cost. The tool is fairly easy to use and doesn’t require any technical or creative know-how.

Titled as the YouTube Video Builder, the tool went for a testing phase with a small group of users and is now being rolled out to the general public. According to Ali Miller Director, Product Management, YouTube Ads, the video builder will specifically help small businesses during the pandemic when the need to release videos quickly is apparent.

Business owners who wish to access this tool can log on to the service via their Google account. They can also link their non-Google email address to avail the service. Businesses will also need to have their own YouTube channel to upload videos.

The operations of the YouTube video builder is simple. Advertisers can utilize images, text, and photos from their business’s profile and customize the layout, colors, and fonts as per the preference. The video can be either six-second or 15-second long and will be uploaded as Unlisted on the company’s channel.

The company can also share the video on social media and/or embed it with other websites. And if they wish, they can run the videos on ads through Google Ads.

Similar to YouTube, Vimeo also released a tool to aid small business owners to create professional-looking social videos in February. Last fall, Facetuner maker Lightricks also launched a line of apps that would be helpful for small businesses in their social media marketing campaigns.

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Facebook Friendships Could Be Used To Determine Covid-19 Spread

The coronavirus might just be the single biggest threat that humanity has ever faced, and that truly is saying something. We need to get ahead of it and a big part of the reason why that is the case has to do with the fact that if humanity fails to flatten the curve then it could potentially cause a lot of problems that would include us being set back quite a bit in terms of economic growth as well as technological progress.

One of the best ways to ensure that everything works in your favor is by looking into tracking the spread of the virus, and it turns out that Facebook might just be quite good at doing this sort of thing all in all. The reason behind this is that the social media platform, with its Social Connectedness Index, can make it quite clear who people are quite connected to, and this makes it a lot easier to track who might have been exposed to the virus and who needs to be quarantined for their own safety as well as the safety of others.

If someone is diagnosed with COVID-19, their friends list can be used to see who they might have met and thus who might have been exposed to the virus. This will make it a great deal easier for the necessary precautions to be taken, and a lot more can be done in order to make the most of things like this all in all. This is just one example of how technology can make it a great deal easier for this virus to be handled adequately, and in a lot of ways these are things that matter a lot more than you would have initially realized. Facebook’s help in this regard could be a game changer for key players in the fight against coronavirus.

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WhatsApp Limits The Forwarding Of A Message To Only One Person At A Time

WhatsApp Limits The Forwarding Of A Message To Only One Person At A Time To Slow Down The Spread Of Misinformation

  • The platform announced to put new limits to forwarded messages after a mass increase in the spread of the coronavirus misinformation.
  • Previously, you could forward a single message to up to 256 users at a time, but the company has been putting limits on this feature over time.
  • WhatsApp experiencing surged traffic during these days could potentially help the misinformation to spread even more and here are the steps the company is taking to curb the spread of this misinformation.

Whatapp announced to put a limit on the forwarding of the messages on Tuesday after there was an increased forwarding of the messages containing the coronavirus misinformation. If a message has been forwarded by a chain of 5 users, it will be identified as a ‘highly forwarded’ message by the company’s server and then the user will only be able to forward this message to only one person. The new policy will be implemented moving forward and aims to create friction to lower the speed with which data moves across the platform.

The Facebook-owned company stated in its blog post that they know their users forward messages containing useful information, memes, entertainment content, or meaningful prayers and quotes. The users have also organized public moments in recent weeks to support the frontline health officials who are combating the coronavirus. But the platform stated that they have also seen a huge rise in the distribution of coronavirus fake news and it is important to slow down its speed so the platform will continue to be a better place of private discussion for the users.

Earlier, it was easy for the users to forward a message to up to 256 people with only a few taps and these messages also not indicated to be forwarded. It was almost unattainable for the platform to induce who might be spreading hate speech across the platform due to the end-to-end encryption in WhatsApp. This issue once was the reason for a crisis in India in which the said platform was linked to anarchy.

The platform tested to put a limit on the number of times a message could be forwarded for the first time in 2018. The company placed two arrows to indicate a message was forwarded and the platform reduced the number of people a message could be forward down to 5 users in 2019 which is now dragged down to only one user.

This soft limit still allows you to forward a message to as many people as you want to but you will have to send the message over and over again to different contacts on your WhatsApp. According to the company, this friction is an effective measure to reduce the speed with which the messages spread across the platform and there was a decrease of 25% in the forward globally during the last year.

Several studies and news publications have raised their concerns regarding fake news on Whatsapp and it appears the Facebook-owned app has started to listen to some of its critics. Recently, Whatsapp integrated a search button to cross check the content of a message in Google search, the messaging platform also facilitated a bot that provides verified information about COVID-19 and donated $1 million to the IFCN, which are indeed a good small step towards fact-checking content from the web. Yet, Whatsapp needs to implement better and more smart content moderation strategies to effectively deal with the misinformation propaganda.

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