Social Pulse, Week of 2-3

Amazon Dating: What if Amazon was a dating site, offering up potential mates like paper towels? That’s what does, including real life humans you shop, review and purchase? Luckily it’s a parody.

HBD YouTube! YouTube turns 15 on February 15. And we just learned the go-to place for user-generated video and brand content recorded $15 billion in 2019 ad revenue — about the same size as Netflix and (by my math) 65x larger than Twitch. YouTube can sometimes be used as just a place for a brand’s TV spots, but there is so much more opportunity on this monster platform.

I’d like to add you to my professional network on LinkedIn: LinkedIn will turn 17 this Spring, and the business-focused social network is growing larger than ever. In its latest earnings report, Microsoft announced LinkedIn reached a milestone 675 million members (as of November) and is driving 25% in session growth, which they call “record engagement.” We don’t have an active user number here, but it’s clear there is continued demand for this kind of connection and content.

The Evolution of Dance: The most popular dances in the world – like The Renegade – are coming from TikTok. But it raises a question about who owns a dance when there isn’t a digital paper trail.

The Kickoff of Primary-Night Social Media Conspiracy Season: This week the results delay at the Iowa Caucuses gave us our first look at social media filling the news vacuum with conspiracy theories, an unfortunate trend the Washington Post says will continue throughout the rest of the year.

Key quote: “The thing that keeps me up at night… is even if the 2020 election is fair and well-managed … the losing party’s supporters won’t accept that democracy worked [because of social media conspiracy theories].”

Meanwhile a new Pew study finds that both parties say they distrust social media for political and election news.

Virtual Traffic Jams: Performance artist Simon Weckert set out to generate a “virtual traffic jam” in Google Maps by pulling a wagon full of smartphones, raising awareness of the power of tracking data and how digital tools affect our real world actions. In this performance, 99 second hand smartphones were transported in a wagon to generate to turn a green street red in Google Maps, which had an impact in the physical world by navigating cars on another route to avoid being stuck in traffic. Watch the video.

Twitter Launches iOS Conversation Threads: This week Twitter introduced a new format for threaded engagement on Twitter in the iOS app, which is supposed to make it easier to track replies from people you know. At first blush, it’s confusing how the replies appear and disappear while you scroll. Perhaps they’ll work that out.

10 Accounts That Will Make You Sign Up for TikTok: It’s 2020. TikTok is the fastest growing, most important social network for Generation Z and Generation Alpha. You work in marketing. You need to sign up for TikTok, but you haven’t yet. So here are 10 Accounts That Will Make You Sign Up for TikTok that are pretty good. But maybe instead, click here and download the app!

Nostalgia of the Week: Listen to this video of this old PC and printer booting up. Ah, the memories.