Social Media Newsfeed: Instagram Tops Twitter | Facebook for Publishers

Instagram now has more than 300 million users, more than Twitter. Facebook unveils new tools for publishers. These stories, and more, in today's Morning Social Media Newsfeed.

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instagram-logo-150x150Instagram Tops 300M Users, Adds Verified Badges, Goes After Spammy Accounts (AllFacebook)
Filter this: Instagram topped the 300 million user mark, co-founder and CEO Kevin Systrom revealed in a blog post in which he also announced that the Facebook-owned photo- and video-sharing network was adding verified badges for celebrities, athletes and brands, as well as deactivating spammy accounts. Bloomberg Instagram, owned by Menlo Park, Calif.-based Facebook, said that its monthly active users rose to 300 million this month from 200 million in March, not counting spammers. That exceeds the 284 million users Twitter said it had in October. TechCrunch Instagram’s been going strong for four years now, and despite fears that the acquisition by Facebook would screw it up, there’s now 70 million photos shared each day, and over 30 billion total. Instagram CEO Kevin Systrom says, “Over the past four years, what began as two friends with a dream has grown into a global community.” USA Today Research firm eMarketer estimates about one-sixth of U.S. smartphone users — 52.5 million — use Instagram. Of those, nearly 80 percent are ages 12 to 34. The Wall Street Journal/Digits ystrom spoke with The Wall Street Journal about how he views the acquisition two years later and what he sees in Instagram’s future.

Facebook to Make Sure the Right People See Publishers’ Posts (Ad Age)
Facebook unveiled a few new tools on Wednesday to give publishers a better shot at making sure people on Facebook see their stories. One tool lets publishers target their Facebook posts at a subset of their fans interested in certain topics.

YouTube Offering Creators Contracts for Exclusive Content (SocialTimes)
Now, reports indicate YouTube is offering its stars deals in an effort to keep them on the network. YouTube is reportedly offering its top stars bonuses if they agree to sign multi-year contracts for exclusive content.

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Facebook Launches Trending Topics on Mobile (VentureBeat)
Facebook Wednesday launched Trending Topics on mobile. The feature is rolling out now in the U.S. on Android, with the promise that support for iOS and other countries is “coming soon.”

Nielsen’s Q3 Audience Report: Time-Shifted Viewing, Online Video Consumption on the Rise (LostRemote)
Nielsen released its third quarter “Total Audience Report” (formerly the “Cross-Platform Report”), and the findings support what has become evident over the past year: viewers are increasingly consuming TV content in time-shifted settings, and are watching TV and online video on a variety of devices. According to the report, Americans spent 141 hours per month watching traditional TV in Q3 2014.

How the NYPD is Using Social Media to Put Harlem Teens Behind Bars (The Verge)
The story of the Henry brothers highlights a new reality for teenagers growing up at the intersection of social media, street gangs and mounting law enforcement surveillance. For those coming of age in gang-saturated areas, the mountains of digital media posted online are a tangled web of connections that can be used to lock up violent perpetrators — but can also ensnare the innocent along with them.

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How Accurate Were 2014’s Social Marketing Predictions? [Infographic] (AllTwitter)
Pundits love to make big predictions for the year to come, and those working in the world of social media marketing are certainly no exception. So, how well did they do with their forecasts in 2014?

Hallmark Pulls ‘Swastika’ Gift Wrap After Social Media Uproar (CNN Money)
It’s the nightmare before Hanukkah, for one company. Hallmark issued an apology Wednesday and is pulling wrapping paper from store shelves following a social media uproar over a pattern that appears to contain swastikas.

Succeeding in Politics Depends on Social Media Saavy (SocialTimes)
Researcher Daniel Kreiss recently published new research outlining how social media affected the presidential campaigns of 2012. Its conclusion? The communications staff for both Barack Obama and Mitt Romney’s campaigns used Twitter to influence journalists and appeal to supporters.

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