The Mastodon social network is getting a great bit of buzz. In this episode I provide some initial thoughts on what is going on. You can find me at https://mastodon.social/@danyork
Imagine if all your business contracts were sent to customers written on postcards. Everyone who happened to see the postcard could see exactly what you were going to charge the customer, how many of your product the customer is going to order - and all of the information about the customer.
Your competition, naturally, could take that information and send a contract to that customer of yours that undercuts your proposal and offers better terms. They could also share that information with others to let them know that this customer buys from you. (Or, at least, they used to!) Your customer, too, could potentially see what you are charging other customers.
Now... STOP imagining - THIS IS HOW THE INTERNET WORKS TODAY!
Facebook truly DESPISES Snapchat!
As documented in a blog post today, Facebook has now added "Stories" to their main mobile apps. Just like Snapchat, these stories:
- expire after 24 hours
- can be either images or videos
- have all sorts of filters and effects you can add
- this includes a "masks" feature similar to Snapchat "lenses" that can change someone's face
- can also be sent directly to one or more of your friends
- and just like Snapchat, the recipient can view the photo - and then view the photo once more in 24 hours
- can be created by simply swiping to the right to rapidly access the camera
If you reload your iOS or Android app today, you should see that the top of the app has changed. You now have:
- a camera icon in the upper left corner that lets you open the camera
- a "Direct" icon that gets you to images or videos sent directly to you. (Yet another messaging inbox.)
- a bar of icons of all the friends who have posted Stories so far
And, as mentioned before, you can now swipe to the right to access the camera. If you don't have this feature today, you should within the next day or so.
Cloning Snapchat again and again...
Adding "Stories" to the main Facebook app comes as no surprise. It's been clear for a while that Facebook was jealous of all the people using Snapchat and wanted to bring them back inside Facebook's shiny walled garden. Facebook had already rolled out "stories" in their other Messaging apps:
- Instagram Stories
- WhatsApp Status
- Facebook Messenger "My Day"
Of these, Instagram Stories has been viewed as successful. The WhatsApp and Messenger launches have been very recent and so it's not clear how many people will use them.
How will Facebook differentiate from Snapchat?
In their blog post, Facebook notes that:
Over the coming months, we plan to introduce new ways for the Facebook community to create their own frames and effects that can be used on any photo or video created with the new Facebook camera. Our goal is for the camera to be a home to hundreds of dynamic and fun effects that give you new ways to connect with friends, family, and your community.
We hope that with the new Facebook camera, Stories and Direct, it will be easier than ever to see the world through each other’s eyes
While it is possible in Snapchat to create a custom "geofilter", this teaser from Facebook sounds like a great bit more.
Facebook, of course, has a huge userbase. As I wrote in my "Directory Dilemma" post a few years back, users will use an app for messaging if the people they want to communicate with use that app. And the reality is that Facebook is the center of many people's communication.
So on one level, Facebook doesn't need to differentiate from Snapchat. They simply need to provide this functionality... and hope that this keeps people from opening up the yellow ghost app.
And of course, Facebook still supports regular text posts, photos, links, all of which last longer than 24 hours. They also have Facebook Live video streaming.
This is just really a way to bring "ephemeral messaging" (messages that disappear after a period of time) inside of Facebook's walls.
How many places can people post "stories"?
The question to me is really:
how many places can people realistically post their 24-hour "stories"?
Right now people have at least FIVE major options:
- Facebook Messenger
... and any other apps that are copying Snapchat right now.
The reality is that users won't post to all of them. They'll choose one... maybe two... and that will be it.
Many people will probably choose to stay right inside of Facebook's walls and use that. Or, if they are already using Instagram Stories, they may stay there.
But what about Facebook Messenger?
One curious aspect of this announcement is bringing direct messaging BACK INSIDE the Facebook mobile app.
Facebook has spent a couple years now moving messaging OUT of the "Facebook" app. They have forced people to use Facebook Messenger to send and receive direct messages on a mobile device.
Now using the "Direct" inbox, we can send and receive messages inside the Facebook app again.
Granted, the messages can only be viewed twice within 24 hours - and they are in the form of images or videos. But we do have messages in the Facebook app again.
It will be interesting to see how Facebook evolves these many different messaging and "stories" channels they have.
Which will YOU choose?
If you have read this far... do you see yourself using the Facebook Stories?
Or will you stay with Snapchat? or Instagram Stories?
Or are you using WhatsApp Status or Facebook Messenger "My Day"?
Or do you just wish this whole "Stories" format would go away? ;-)
Please do leave comments here or wherever this article appears on social media.
P.S. There are many other stories about Facebook Stories appearing today.
“Why should I care about encryption? How does it affect my business?” In this episode I give a simple example of why encryption is important for every business, government or organization. See more at http://danyork.me
Imagine if all your business contracts were sent to customers written on postcards. Everyone who happened to see the postcard could see exactly what you were going to charge the customer, how many of your product the customer is going to order – and al…
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It is a remarkably quiet week for DNS security and privacy topics at the IETF 98 meeting in Chicago next week. Both the DANE and DPRIVE working groups are moving along very well with their work on their mailing lists and so chose not to meet in Chicago. Similarly, with DNSSEC deployment steadily increasing (as we outlined in the 2016 State of DNSSEC Deployment report in December), the work to be discussed in DNS Operations (DNSOP) is more about exploring ideas to make DNSSEC even more secure.
Here is a quick view of what is happening in Chicago.
ICANN 58 takes place next week in Copenhagen, Denmark, and there will be some excellent technical content about DNSSEC and DANE happening in several sessions from March 12-15, 2017. All times below are Central European Time (CET), which is UTC+1. DNSSEC For Everybody: A Beginner’s Guide – Sunday, 12 March On Sunday, March 12, 2017, we’ll have the “DNSSEC For […]
Want to learn more about the current state of DNSSEC? Want to see demos of new software to secure email? Curious about the potential impact of the Root Key Rollover happening this year? Next week in Copenhagen, Denmark, ICANN 58 will include some great…