Social Shoutout: Facebook have more legal dilemmas and WhatsApp ban under 16’s from using their platform.

By April 27, 2018Stories

Just like the last month or so, things haven’t been great for Facebook again this week. Today will be talking about how UK Money Saving Expert, Martin Lewis announced that he is suing the social media giant. (Yet another lawsuit for them to deal with).

But aside from that, Facebook is making some changes to their platform (and others they own) as this week Facebook and Instagram have been pushing users to review how their data is used. Alongside this, it was also announced that under 16’s would be banned from WhatsApp.

Keep reading to be filled in with all the social media gossip from this week!

THE UK'S MONEY SAVING EXPERT SUES FACEBOOK

Well if Facebook weren’t under the cosh enough… it was announced this week that Money Saving Expert’s Martin Lewis is suing them over fake ads. I’m sure Facebook is looking forward to making the headlines for a positive story sometime soon, but that looks like a distant dream at the minute!

Martin Lewis is suing Facebook over claims it has allowed scammers to publish over 50 fake adverts using his name – many of which have been used to scam people out of thousands of pounds. On Monday, the Money Saving Expert founder filed a defamation lawsuit at the High Court against the social media giant.

Having reported the issues on multiple occasions to Facebook, Lewis claimed that the lax response from the platform has allowed these ads to continue and be seen by millions of people across the UK. Not only that but he has promised to donate his potential payout to a number of anti-scam charities… a nice touch!

What’s this space – we’ll see how far the Money Saving Expert gets.

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FACEBOOK & INSTAGRAM PROMOTE FACE RECOGNITION

With less than a month to go until GDPR comes into effect and hot on the heels of the Cambridge Analytica saga, Facebook and Instagram have been promoting updates and prompting users to review how their data is used and to update their permissions.

Upon logging into the platforms, alerts come up at the top of screens prompting users to review how their data is used in a very straightforward and surprisingly plan English process. One of the main items to note is the Face recognition setting which is something we umm-ed and ahh-ed about at KC HQ around the pros and cons.
Facebook very much promotes this as a positive, in a bid to enhance inclusivity on the platform. For example, it’s great for those with visual impairments who rely on screen readers. Also, it’s a way to minimise fraudulent accounts to impersonate users, while also providing you with the opportunity to request any images that you appear in to be removed. (Which could come in handy if you have some worse for wear images circulating social media after a night out!)

After much debate, our MD decided to opt for the facial recognition feature in a bid to test it out. The very same time day, a Facebook friend announced how her pictures had been stolen to raise money for a non-existent cause fraudulently. So already, it might be starting to work in the way it is supposedly meant for.

It will be interesting to see how Facebook manage with the new data protection regulations and more specifically if face recognition is used for the purposes identified!

SOCIAL MEDIA CO'S COULD FACE NEW EU REGULATIONS OVER FAKE NEWS
The EU is calling on tech giants such as Facebook and Google to step up efforts to tackle the spread of fake news online and the use of personal data in the next few months or potentially face further EU regulation.
 
The European Commission announced its plans to draw up a Code of Practice on Disinformation for the 28-nation EU by July with measures to prevent the spread of fake news such as increasing scrutiny of advertisement placements.
 
Advertisers and online platforms will need to produce “measurable effects” on the code of practice by October. If they fail to do that, then the Commission could propose further actions, including regulation “targeted at a few platforms.”
 
Facebook has stepped up fact-checking in its fight against fake news and is trying to make it uneconomical for people to post such content by lowering its ranking and making it less visible. The world’s largest social network is also working on giving its users more context and background about the content they read on the platform.
 
It will be interesting to see how this develops in the coming months as a one-size-fits-all solution may not address the high profile issues affecting social media. And, will self-regulation be enough to earn public trust in social media?
WHATSAPP BAN UNDER 16'S FROM USING THEIR PLATFORM

In just a few weeks, WhatsApp will be raising the minimum age limit to 16.
Currently, WhatsApp users have to be 13 to use the instant messaging app. However, this is about to change. Ahead of the introduction of new data privacy rules in the EU next month, WhatsApp is changing this to 16.

Once the changes are in place, WhatsApp, which is currently owned by Facebook, will need users to verify their date of birth before being able to send messages on the app.

It is not clear how it will verify answers from users, given the limited data requested and held by the service.

Other changes announced by WhatsApp include enabling users to download a report detailing the data it holds on them, such as the make and model of the device they use, their contacts and groups, and any blocked numbers.

What do you think to this change? Will it affect communication between you and your child?

As mentioned before, WhatsApp is currently owned by Facebook, so it seems like they are taking more steps to become more secure with their data and regulations.