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    • First Instagram.

      There’s this reluctance sometimes to share content on social media for fear that no one will like it.


      Because everyone will then see that no one liked your content or that only a few people bothered to like it.

      As much as we’d prefer to get over 100 people to like our content like this 👇, we’re more likely to get a handful or less to most of what we share on social media.

      Instagram is therefore experimenting with making your likes visible only to you, meaning that people will have to decide whether to like your content based on its quality rather than because it’s popular.

      Instagram began hiding Likes in April in Canada, then brought the test to Ireland, Italy, Japan, Brazil, Australia and New Zealand in July. Facebook starteda similar experiment in Australia in September. Instagram said last week the test would expand to the U.S., but now it’s running everywhere to a small percentage of users in each country. Instagram tweets that feedback to the experiment so far has been positive, but it’s continuing to test because it’s such a fundamental change to the app. (TechCrunch)

      Next YouTube.

      When I shared this with @Vilen , I think “Wow!” was a bit of an understatement.

      YouTube has become a repository for sharing the world’s videos. You may not make money uploading videos of you flossing with your friends, but at least your account was always free.

      TechSpot, a site I’m not very familiar with, discovered in YouTube’s new terms of service, which go into effect in December, that

      “YouTube may terminate your access, or your Google account’s access to all or part of the Service if YouTube believes, in its sole discretion, that provision of the Service to you is no longer commercially viable.”

      Thoughts from those with active YouTube channels? @DangerDave or @JeffersonGrahamPhoto ?

      Here’s a link to the full article.

    • Regarding the YouTube news, as always I wonder how much of that is a real issue, and how much of it is just hyperbole by some clickbait media site.

      I just tried finding the exact Terms of Service change that is being reported about. Not that easy because I live in a different jurisdiction and YouTube wants to show ToS relevant to my situation, but I guess I found links that will survive embedding. Here's the current one:

      And here's the one that will go into effect on December 10:

      So, what are the actual changes? It is true that something has been added to the section "Account Suspension & Termination". Quote:

      YouTube may terminate your access, or your Google account’s access to all or part of the Service if YouTube believes, in its sole discretion, that provision of the Service to you is no longer commercially viable.

      If you compare just that section to the current one, you will find that it is much longer, and that the current version does not state anything whatsoever about "account termination" outside of users violating the ToS.

      However, looking at the whole thing, the old ToS has this to say in the "General Use of the Service" section:

      YouTube reserves the right to discontinue any aspect of the Service at any time.

      And, in the following section:

      YouTube reserves the right to remove Content without prior notice.

      I'd say that "deleting all your content" and "shutting down your channel" has been something legally possible even before. Now, I'm not commenting on whether that clause is good, or bad, or simply necessary - but it doesn't seem to be that big of a change after all.

    • Not too bothered.

      8.4k subscribers = beer money. It means Google is making beer money X 4 off my content so I should be fine.

      But anyone who relies on any Google services to make their living really is in a parlous state.

      I don't (rely on them) and if they cut it too rough I'd just move to Vimeo and charge pay per view. With the improvements I've made in production values lately I might even publish on both platforms in the future anyhoo.

    • I’m not surprised by this move and I actually feel that it is fair. For any business to succeed and be financially viable they have to establish boundaries.

      YouTube is a free service to consume, supported by ads. YouTube Premium (paid, ad-free version) is not mainstream yet. So, in order to make a profit, YouTube needs to serve ads that people watch in order to cover the cost of storage.

      There are a few examples that make this business model unsustainable. Here is one: if someone uploads / streams gigabytes of video of them playing video games that no one watches it costs YouTube a huge chunk of money to host that video on their servers. That tiny percentage of users could rack up a huge storage bill that needs to be paid for by others. That means showing more ads on everyone else’s videos that do get watched. That and needing to charge more for the ad-free Premium service. So YouTube is taking a defensive position in the ToS, reserving the option to take down those videos.

      I’m all for net neutrality, but in this example I think that YouTube should have the power to prevent abuse of their free storage.

    • I think the last five minutes of this video is important to YouTube creators, such as @DangerDave and @JeffersonGrahamPhoto .

      Because of the COPPA settlement with the FTC, as of January 1st the algorithms YouTube uses to classify videos is automatically going to mark videos as “13 and under.” If one of your videos gets marked in error, that means no beer money for you.

      Open question on how you file for a correction.

    • I've marked my channel as not for kids.

      Well physical age anyway. I still don't know what I want to do when I grow up.

      I'll start *&!@#$*&)!@$# swearing and cussing in my ($)(&^!@ Videos to make sure.

    • The Coppa thing is actually going to have significant impact on a large amount of content creators. Like, the end of their channels and their incomes - and a risk of a $40k fine if they get it wrong - if they are in the USA.

      My stuff is fine. You have to be over 16 to legally operate the products I review, but all of the gamers, toys reviewers, unboxers, collectors, modellers and anything with cartoon content - or anything that could be construed as targeted at kids (even if it isn't) - is 90% out of business come January.

      As noted - making a living off a Google service is parlous - even if this shemozzle isn't entirely all of their own doing.

    • So “unboxing” videos are where you literally take the toy out of the box?! Who knew it was a thing (not me).

      I’m glad to hear that your stuff will be fine, Dave.


      I know this might be of interest to @mjlawler who has over 900 videos on YouTube in the education space.

    • Yeah - it's a thing. There are even ones where they wrap gifts. I've never bothered with any of it either but they show up in my recommeded feed occasionally - because I did watch some model railway vids with my Grandson. Not any more after January though. All targeting for jnrs ist verbotten.

    • Reading a few old Wired magazines from the library and the June issue did a profile on HobbyKidsTV, a YouTube channel by a family with three kids doing videos and over 3 million subscribers:

      The HobbyParents declines to comment on whether they’ve quit their day jobs, but it’s hard to imagine how filming and editing eight to 12 videos a week, could be anything but full time.

      Each video has a preroll ad, up to five midroll ads, and a postroll ad, sometimes in addition to a “branded integration” within the video itself.

      Wow, I think they’ll be losing more than beer money come January 1st.

    • Regarding likes, I believe the psychology behind this has always been a bit concerning. And this is only a part of an entire ecosystem of information gathering and sharing that is built around popularity. There was a very interesting study on this conducted years ago based off what they call the majority illusion. Fascinating and worrisome at the same time.

    • Interesting article. I think it would also be of interest to @lidja .

      I think there is always the opportunity for distortion with social rating systems, whether it’s amazon reviews, Yelp comments, upvoting on Reddit or likes on Instagram.

      An interesting feature that Twitter introduced about a year ago was likes from trusted sources: if five or more of the people you followed ended up liking the same content then the algorithm would have the content show up in your timeline.

      In essence, group curation by trusted sources.

      I will be honest that there is a minor thrill when my notifications blow up with a flood of likes and retweets. This past week, between Guest Blogger Week and the 2nd Annual Maths Panel on Cake, was one of those blow ups. (It’s fun when it happens, but it’s not by any means the main reason why I enjoy social media.)

    • Dopamine.

      "According to an article by Harvard University researcher Trevor Haynes, when you get a social media notification, your brain sends a chemical messenger called dopamine along a reward pathway, which makes you feel good. Dopamine is associated with food, exercise, love, sex, gambling, drugs … and now, social media."

      "Dopamine problems are implicated in ADHD, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, depression, bipolar
      disorders, binge eating, addiction, gambling, and schizophrenia. Having too much dopamine in the wrong place can make you psychotic."

      Be careful out there. Social Media in Moderation.

    • Wow those are impressive numbers! Validation is a major component of the human condition so it don't think it is something we should be ashamed of but I do believe the algorithms are favoring quantity over quality which tends to draw out the lowest common denominator in the exchange. I did not know that about Twitter. Very interesting. I believe the fix is providing the user with more controls to tune who and what they are interested in. As well as filter out non verified sources and noisemakers. As an optimist, I believe these changes are on the horizon but they are not going to come from the established players (the FANGs of the world)

    • Be careful out there. Social Media in Moderation.

      Yeah, a year and a half ago I was creating content that often went viral: think 20,000 views in a day. I found myself spending way too much time online and it became about can I get more likes, views, retweets, etc. with the next viral attempt.

      My approach to stay in balance is to be mindful of my reading stack of books and magazines. If it starts to get too high it means that I need to take a break from social media and commune with print.

      Hmm, the stack seems to have grown.


    • Yerp - I was very active on Online Forums before the Facebook thing, prolific, but every now and then I found myself being vexed by what was happening in cyberspace. When I caught myself in that rut I simply turned it all off for 3 to 6 months. Logged out, walked away and lived exclusively in the real world again.

      When I was back to a balanced space suitable for ignoring haters and the vast multitute of idiots I logged on again.

      Then one day I just couldn't be bothered any more.

      I never embraced facebook, certainly not on a personal level, I don't follow anyone at all and have never completed my profile. I do have a page for motorcycle test self-promotion but it's broadcast only - nothing incoming.

      I don't have a twitter account and have opened the instagram app maybe 6 times - ever. Linkedin can get f******.

      Actually Cake is pretty much all I do now (apart from a rare photo share on ADV). I quite like it being as personal and as balanced as it is - which I'm sure is a flow-on from the governors.

    • I never embraced facebook, certainly not on a personal level, I don't follow anyone at all and have never completed my profile.

      Thanks for mentioning that, Dave.

      I feel like an anti-social heel at times for not being on FB but it reminded me of that 1970s cliche where your neighbors come back from their European vacation and then invite you over for three hours of out of focus pics separated by the advancing clicks of their slide projector. Except on FB it felt like a weekly (daily?) occurrence, restaurant food pics and other things that I never knew about my friends (or cared to know) before Facebook. I care deeply about my friends and family but their virtual over sharing I can do without.

      I think the governorship on Cake is outstanding, but I’m a bit biased as one of the moderators.

      What I like about Cake is that there are a lot of smart people on here but no one is trying to throw it in your face. I can mention an article from Harvard Business Review or MIT Technology Review or The New Yorker and odds are more than one person here has already read it, In print.

    • I never knew about my friends (or cared to know)

      Aye - not friends - but some people I've met in my line of work have sent me a 'friend request'. They seemed 'Normal' so I said OK. And they turned out to be total redneck racists or Islamaphobes on FB - that was a real eye opener.

    • COPPA Laws impact Middle School Teachers

      This is definitely a law of unintended consequences for educators. The two minute video shows how on Jan 1st, MS teachers will lose access to countless resources.

      Any thoughts from the resident edtech experts?

      @HAllum , as an educational technology coach to K-8 schools are your hands full supporting teachers through this change?

    • Wow I was not aware of the COPPA laws. I could completely see how this would affect teachers working with 13 year olds and younger. The fines look pretty stiff. This is certainly a multi dimensional issue.

    • Thanks for posting my video on how COPPA will impact educators and students. I have been teaching middle school computer design since 2003. I have seen a lot of changes. At first, my job was really tough because of the lack of access to amazing resources. My district has been forward thinking by opening doors for our students by providing access to wonderful online tools. Though I understand the need to protect our youth, the laws seem to be incredibly rigid. I am seeing more and more online tools that students love and learn from being taken away. For example, NitroType is a fantastic online typing resource that students love to visit and practice typing has been recently removed from use. We all know the vast majority of our students go home and spend time on Youtube, which is now being removed from more and more middle schools. I realize some students aren't too disciplined about Youtube at school but the majority of them are using it to locate professional how to videos which will no longer be accessible for them at school. All my videos for learning are on Youtube. My digital units have a lot of links to those Youtube videos. I will have to go through every lesson my students do in my class and modify it so students can view my videos. I am concerned that we will be limiting what our students can view because lets face it, Youtube has amazing educational videos. So many of the educational sites that I can send my students to in order to get deeper learning have videos on their site that are Youtube videos. We need to teach our students how to use tools for good and not take them away as a learning tool. This is shameful.