Snap Inc., maker of SnapChat and Spectacles, and the general new hotness in social media these days, filed for an IPO on Thursday. The catch? The paperwork shows that for all its hype, Snap has never made a profit. That’s in spite of the $404 million in revenue it generated in 2016.
That hasn’t stopped The Wall Street Journal from calling it “the largest…debut since Alibaba” right above a helpful video that explains filters to us oldz. That didn’t stop them from pointing out that a certain tech behemoth (cough Facebook) has been copying most of its moves lately.
One thing Facebook hasn’t copied yet is Snap’s tough stance on trolls, thirst traps*, and other shady online behavior. Combined with its 158 million daily active users, that might make it pretty appealing to publications and advertisers.
So maybe there’s only one thing to say….and we’ll let Tom Cruise handle that.
Old school social still makes news
Reddit made news this week when it officially banned some prominent subreddits. Reddit has never had a reputation for being the kindest corner of the Internet (just ask Ellen Pao), and some of the subreddits toe the line between free and hate speech. And by “toe the line,” I mean just typing the names of them would probably trip the software filters at most of the places I’ve worked.
It took a blatant breaking of the terms of service to bring on the ban. In this case, it was tied to doxxing. It’s worth pointing out that Reddit is still a privately held company, and the clear violation of the terms of service makes it harder for the banned groups to say that they were wronged.
And Facebook is adding more ads
Sometimes, it feels like it wouldn’t be a round up of social media news if I didn’t mention Facebook finding even more ways to make money. This week’s installment comes from reports that they’re testing ads in Messenger.
This is in addition to the sponsored messages that a brand can send you if you’ve already messaged. Screenshots show newsfeed style ads in the Messenger app. It feels…icky… but Facebook has been promoting chatbots and messenging as a bigger part of its future for some time now.
But man, I’m having a hard time getting excited about the possibility, and that’s saying a lot for someone who has written ads for a living.
*Thirst trap- posts from someone desperate for attention. You can find more on urban dictionary, but it’s not recommended for work.