In The News: Facebook Tests VR Social Platform, YouTube Adjusts Ads Ban on Coronavirus Videos, and Twitter Expands Hate Speech Policies

Mar 2020

top view of friends wearing VR headsets in circle putting hands togetherVirtual conversations may be the staple in the near future. This week, social media platforms are taking a turn into virtual reality and implementing quality and truthful online discussions. Facebook’s new Horizons VR platform may be the new hangout spot, while YouTube and Twitter make efforts to keep conversations going in light of the coronavirus and hate speech remarks.


Facebook Begins Testing on VR Social Platform

Would you be interested in connecting with your customers via virtual reality? Soon, you may be able to! Facebook has begun testing its new VR social platform: Horizons. Facebook experimented with another VR venture last year called Spaces, which allowed you to interact with a virtual world in a natural way with hand tracking from the Oculus Quest headset. 

However, Horizons is a virtual world where you create an avatar and engage with others. Facebook is aiming to be the frontrunner for virtual reality in social media. Their Oculus VR division created Horizons and could be a new way to establish your presence online. With invites for the alpha version being sent to a small group of users, the excitement behind Horizons is tangible. Could Horizons be your ticket to engagement with customers and showing off your brand? 


YouTube Adjusts Ads Ban on Coronavirus Videos

If you create videos to speak to your audience, you may find that you are losing income on YouTube. With coronavirus sweeping all social media platforms, there is a growing trend of businesses being affected by the illness. Not too long ago, YouTube banned the monetization of ads on videos discussing coronavirus due to their “sensitive events” policy. 

CEO of YouTube, Susan Wojcicki, said that ads would be allowed on videos with coronavirus-related content. Wojcicki states, “There’s a lot of uncertainty right now, and we understand the importance of helping people find authoritative sources of news and information.” Additionally, those videos have precautions in place so that ads can be shown only on particular news organizations or creators who pass YouTube’s self-certification program. 


Twitter Expands Policy on Hate Speech

Twitter proves that it’s the platform for discussion for businesses and individuals alike. They currently have policies against hate speech covering race, gender, and as of last year, Twitter banned tweets that dehumanized religious groups. Now, they are updating that policy to cover tweets with dehumanizing statements that treat people as “less than human.”

After the policy for religious groups was instituted, the company asked the public for feedback. The vast majority of respondents said that the biggest issue was that the policies were too broad. Being a platform for discussion, Twitter has updated their policy about dehumanizing tweets to include age, disability, and disease in a tweet. They stated from its Twitter Safety account, “We continuously examine our rules to help make Twitter safer.” Are you a fan of Twitter’s responsiveness to keep the conversation going?


megaphone92% of the U.S. population is familiar with Twitter, even if they don’t use it

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