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July Social Media Snapshots: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Reddit4 min read

4 min read

July 2016 - Social media snapshots


Zuckerberg privacy woes, Barnaby Joyce and Mariah Carey, Twitter treats SMEs

Welcome to the first edition of Social Snapshots, a monthly snapshot of some of the biggest news in social media at the start of the month.

This month, let’s take a look at what’s happening with all of the big social media networks, and what it might mean for your social strategies.

It’s been a weird, tough week for Mark Zuckerberg

It must be tough to see your own name appearing in the “trending news” section of the social media platform you yourself created. But such is the case for Mark Zuckerberg this week, who has been at the centre of a few weird – and creepy – news stories.

First, he posted a photo of himself with black tape covering his headphone jack and webcam. This generated a number of headlines wondering if the average Joe should take the same privacy measures – and unfortunately, it took any thunder away from what the photo was meant to announce: that 500 million people use Instagram (which is owned by Facebook) every month.

Before that news died down, Zuckerberg found himself in another privacy-related story – this one, however, takes place in the physical realm. It looks like some of Zuckerberg’s neighbours in Hawaii are kicking up a bit of a fuss over a six-foot wall around his $110m holiday home. We can only assume Donald Trump would approve.

Aussie politicians get a very intimate Instagram experience

Everyone loves a good Instagram selfie, but there’s usually very little that’s natural about such portraits. Just think about how many snaps you delete before finding the perfect selfie that shows you how you want to be shown.

Photographer Nic Walker, however, wanted to capture Australian politicians’ true emotions. It wasn’t an easy feat, but he found a creative way to do it in a collaboration with Facebook and Instagram.

When politicians like Julie Bishop, Barnaby Joyce, Penny Wong and Anthony Albanese sat down in front of the camera, Walker flashed them photos to bring out emotions. The images shown to our political leaders were quite diverse – some saw their own family, others saw their political nemeses, and still others saw celebrities like Mariah Carey or the girls from Sex and the City.

The result is a stunning series of photos featured on the Sydney Morning Herald Instagram account. Kudos to the SMH and Walker – this project shows the real power of collaboration on social media, and demonstrates how Instagram can go well beyond the genres of food porn and duck-faced selfies.

This is Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull (@turnbullmalcolm) in the final in a series of 10 moving vignettes captured by Fairfax photographer Nic Walker (@NicWalker101) for a Fairfax Media and @Instagram series Election 2016: Our Leaders. Walker, the project’s creative director and photographer, describes the collaboration as “a chance to play with traditional portraiture and moving images with people who are largely inaccessible but on what is arguably the most democratic and most accessible social media platform in the world”. The portraits involved capturing micro-expressions over a nine-second shoot. Each politician was shown six images that were chosen specifically to elicit a reaction (we won’t be revealing what they were, but you can have a guess). Nine frames were shot per second – 81 frames in all – so what you are seeing is reactions to images captured by the camera with no time for the subjects to consciously construct their expressions. “During an election campaign, you get the sense that politicians go into a mode where their image is very crafted and manufactured,” Walker said. “This project was all about eliciting a very human response to remind people that love or hate their ideas, politicians are people too.” #auspol #ausvotes #election2016 #auspolportraits #portraiture #portrait #photography #movingimage #sydneymorningherald

A video posted by The Sydney Morning Herald (@sydneymorningherald) on

Twitter gives small businesses a treat

Twitter is continuing its push into the small business market with a new standalone platform called Dashboard. There’s a whole slew of features in the app – analytics, scheduling options, customised feeds, and even recommendations on what to tweet – that could make life easier for small businesses trying to connect with customers on the platform.

Right now, Dashboard is only available for beta testing in the US. We’ll be keeping an eye on it, as it sounds like it has great potential.

This peacock photo is the funniest thing on Reddit right now

Every once in a while (okay, almost every day), a photo appears on Reddit that is just perfect for photoshopping. The pic du jour was posted by Reddit user /u/bwaxse, and it shows his daughter running in what can only be described as sheer terror from a peacock.

Reddit did what it does best and gave it the photoshop treatment. Spoiler Alert: If you haven’t watched the last episode of Game of Thrones, then save this one for later. Otherwise, enjoy.


We’ll be back next month with more of what’s happening in the world of social media. Stay tuned.