5 recent Facebook updates that every social geek should know

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    Facebook announced a partnership with Blizzard Entertainment: All of Blizzard’s games, from “World of Warcraft” to “Diablo 3” to “Hearthstone” to “Overwatch” will be instantly streamable – live! – on Facebook Live. You push a “Go Live!” button, there’s a short countdown (3….2….1), and you’re off to the races, live streaming your game directly to Facebook in high-resolution. It’s easy to imagine just such a future on everything from your iPhone to that PlayStation 4 in the living room.

  • Before now, Facebook relied heavily on a team of on-call engineers to parse through real-time data about national disasters and incidents such as terrorist attacks coming in from third-party partners. Ultimately, these staffers would serve up manual Safety Check prompts encouraging people to use the feature. Starting this week, Facebook is testing a Safety Check invite tool that allows people in affected areas to ask friends and family members to check in and mark themselves as “safe.”

  • Facebook updated Messenger by adding more than 100 new emoji characters “to better reflect gender and skin tones,” Facebook also updated its existing emoji so that all its emoji will appear exactly the same across Messenger, regardless of device or platform. The update is meant to bring more diversity to Messenger’s emoji set. There are now more female emoji characters, including a female police officer, runner and swimmer; as well as gender-agnostic options and multi-colored emojis.

  • Chatbots have the advantage of enabling users to access business services while on chat platforms like Facebook Messenger and Telegram. What this could mean is that the search and discovery function may shift away from Google and apps to chat platforms because of their pure simplicity and convenience. This development truly has the potential to become the ‘next big thing’ when businesses invest sufficiently in this technology and when more chat platforms like Whatsapp join the party.

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    Facebook announced a few days ago that it will now allow users to leave a video in the comments section, as the company continues to emphasise video content as we consume more of it. You can leave a video by clicking the camera button in the comments box and uploading one. It’s available currently on the desktop web, but the next update will expand the feature to its iOS and Android apps.