Instagram Introduces Video Captions, Shutters the IGTV App

Instagram is making changes to its videos, adding auto-generated captions in 17 languages even as it discontinues support for the standalone IGTV video app to “focus on having all video on the main Instagram app.” It is eliminating the in-stream advertising known as IGTV ads while exploring ways to help creators monetize the short-form Reels format that “continues to be the largest contributor to engagement growth on Instagram,” according to the social platform. Instagram says it will “begin testing a new ad experience” later this year that will “allow creators to earn revenue from ads displayed on their Reels.”  Continue reading Instagram Introduces Video Captions, Shutters the IGTV App

TikTok Shakes-Up Its Content Format with 10-Minute Videos

TikTok is pivoting to longer videos. The social platform that became the fastest-growing ever on the strength of short-form videos and had competitors scrambling in its wake to copy the format, is now allowing users to post videos of up to 10 minutes. Launched by China’s ByteDance in September 2016, TikTok was initially formatted for videos of 15-seconds or less. In 2018, when it merged with Chinese lip-sync service Musical.ly, it permitted videos of 1 minute, and then bumped up to three-minutes last summer. By September 2021 TikTok announced it had hit one billion users worldwide in only five years. Continue reading TikTok Shakes-Up Its Content Format with 10-Minute Videos

TikTok Experiments with Paid Subscriptions, Tweaks Stories

TikTok is testing the waters with a paid subscription mode for creators, joining Facebook, Clubhouse and others. Although TikTok remains tight-lipped about the experiment, it seems designed to keep TikTok influencers on the ByteDance platform rather than leaving for more lucrative pastures. Last week, Instagram announced a test allowing creators to charge from 99 cents to $99 per month for exclusive content, while Twitter in September debuted Super Follows, with rates of $2.99 to $9.99 per month. A creator with 13,000 followers that gets a 2 percent take rate at $4.99 per month can make $900 a month. YouTube and Snapchat also offer monetization options. Continue reading TikTok Experiments with Paid Subscriptions, Tweaks Stories

TikTok Adjusts Feed to Curb Repetition, Offers Users Control

TikTok is tweaking its For You feed so users won’t be recommended too much of the same content. The move follows a global spate of regulatory hearings that took social media companies to task for promoting content that intentionally polarizes adults and potentially harms children. In addition to “diversifying recommendations” in order to “interrupt repetitive patterns” around topics that may provide negative reinforcement, like “loneliness or weight loss,” the popular ByteDance platform said it is also introducing a new feature that will allow users to avoid specific topics or creators. Continue reading TikTok Adjusts Feed to Curb Repetition, Offers Users Control

Reddit Integrates Dubsmash Video Features into Its Own App

Reddit is shutting down its short-form video platform, Dubsmash, on February 22, 2022. As a result, Dubsmash will no longer be available to download from Apple’s App Store or the Google Play Store, and the downloaded app will cease to function. After acquiring Dubsmash in 2020, Reddit has been working on integrating its own video-sharing functions with Dubsmash. The integrated version will add several new features, including creative video editing, voice-over, and multiple filters for users to apply to their short clips. In addition, a new video streaming feature was added to the app exclusively for iOS users back in August. Continue reading Reddit Integrates Dubsmash Video Features into Its Own App

Google Chrome to Adopt New Coalition for Better Ads’ Rules

Beginning in August, Google Chrome will block the Internet’s most intrusive ads: long pre-roll video ads that can’t be skipped, mid-roll ads that appear part way through a video, and large display ads covering more than 20 percent of the screen. These ad types will be banned only on short-form videos under eight minutes. Google’s move follows new rules just set by the Coalition for Better Ads (CBA), whose other members include Facebook, the Interactive Advertising Bureau, and the World Federation of Advertisers. Continue reading Google Chrome to Adopt New Coalition for Better Ads’ Rules

Verizon Invests in AwesomenessTV to Grow its Mobile Video

Verizon Communications announced yesterday that it has purchased a minority stake in AwesomenessTV, the digital entertainment network geared toward teens and young adults. Verizon is buying 24.5 percent of the video company, now valued at $650 million. DreamWorks Animation owns 51 percent of the unit (it acquired Awesomeness in 2013), and Hearst owns another 24.5 percent. According to the telco, plans include creating a “a first-of-its-kind premium short-form mobile video service featuring leading talent in front of and behind the camera.” Continue reading Verizon Invests in AwesomenessTV to Grow its Mobile Video

Google Offers Special Deals to Keep Top Talent on YouTube

As Facebook’s video startup Vessel begins to take shape, the company has aggressively pursued some of YouTube’s most popular online stars. In response, Google has been structuring more lucrative deals for its stars to keep them from leaving. The company has gone as far as offering multiyear deals, performance-based bonuses and additional funding for video production. Although Vessel has yet to launch, it is reportedly looking to secure programming in advance of its debut.  Continue reading Google Offers Special Deals to Keep Top Talent on YouTube