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Facebook warns against passively browsing your News Feed

Facebook warns against passively browsing your News Feed

Facebook has once again faced sharp criticism over the potential negative effects social media can have on someone's life, but this time it is back with more than a simple statement. The company has warned that passively browsing your News Feed could have a negative effect on your mood, citing research the found passive activities may lead to feeling bad whereas active participation -- such as leaving comments on friends' posts -- may be beneficial.

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Facebook Snooze lands in time to avoid Star Wars spoilers

Facebook Snooze lands in time to avoid Star Wars spoilers

This is a big weekend for Star Wars fans. The Last Jedi launches in the US today, which means that the race is now on for those who would rather not be spoiled. Those fans need to see the movie as quickly as possible or risk running into spoilers on the internet, which are unsurprisingly everywhere. What if you can't see the new movie right away, though? A new feature being rolled out by Facebook could help with that.

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Facebook Messenger World Effects bring Snapchat-like AR stickers

Facebook Messenger World Effects bring Snapchat-like AR stickers

It ain’t over til the big-boned Viking lady sings, as they say. That definitely seems to be the case with Facebook’s barrage of new features that are too eerily familiar with features from its biggest rival, Snapchat. Then again, everyone’s going towards augmented reality objects these days, so Facebook could simply say it’s just riding the waves. Regardless, uses of Messenger need not look elsewhere for their 3D stickers fix as Facebook introduces “World Effects” that brings the messaging service closer to making Snapchat redundant.

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Essential Phone Camera update brings Facebook and YouTube 360 streaming into play

Essential Phone Camera update brings Facebook and YouTube 360 streaming into play

This week the folks at Essential released an update to their Essential Phone's camera app. The Essential Camera app build 0.1.091 was made to bring YouTube Live 360 support for the first time. The ability to broadcast Facebook Live 360 video to a Facebook page was added in this update as well.

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Instagram’s new Direct app splits off private messaging

Instagram’s new Direct app splits off private messaging

Facebook’s war against Snapchat continues and this time it is using Instagram as its proxy. The popular social photo sharing platform has just rolled out a limited test of its new Direct private messaging app that removes the same functionality from the main Instagram app. But in addition to exhibit similar behavior to Snapchat, this split could bring back painful memories of Facebook’s controversial extraction of Messenger into its own standalone experience.

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Facebook Messenger Kids goes heavy on parental controls for safe chatting

Facebook Messenger Kids goes heavy on parental controls for safe chatting

With more than 2 billion monthly users, Facebook can't exactly guarantee that it's going to be a safe place for kids. In fact, Facebook bars anyone younger than 13 from creating a profile, and has done so from the start. While that's probably for the best, Facebook still offers tools that are handy for keeping in touch - specifically Messenger - and now you have an new option if you'd like to let your child have a presence on Messenger while at the same time staying away from the larger Facebook ecosystem.

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Facebook test makes users share a selfie to unlock their accounts

Facebook test makes users share a selfie to unlock their accounts

Facebook is testing a security feature that requires an affected user to upload a selfie in order to unlock their account. The test surfaced after some users complained about receiving a notice that they had to upload an image of their face to unlock their account features. Facebook has since confirmed the test, explaining that it is a way for catching "suspicious activity" and weeding out spammy accounts.

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Facebook suicide prevention tool uses AI to detect users at risk

Facebook suicide prevention tool uses AI to detect users at risk

Facebook's latest suicide prevention tool update doesn't rely on user reports to detect suicidal users, instead using artificial intelligence to detect when a user may be experiencing suicidal thoughts. This ability also includes Facebook Live; the company plans to roll it out to users around the world with the exception of Europe. This is part of what Facebook calls proactive detection.

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Facebook does a Snapchat with messaging Streaks

Facebook does a Snapchat with messaging Streaks

The old saying goes “if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em”. Facebook, naturally, has put a different twist to that: if you can’t beat ‘em, copy ‘em. That does seem to be the between the social networking titan and Snapchat, perceived to be its biggest threat, bigger than even Twitter. Following a long list of new features that have a not so vague resemblance to Snapchat’s, Facebook is now testing “streaks” in Messenger, turning conversations into a potential game and, of course, profitable user engagement for Facebook.

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Facebook will soon alert users who liked a Russia-linked page

Facebook will soon alert users who liked a Russia-linked page

Facebook will start alerting users who 'liked' a page that has been linked to Russia, the company says. This is part of Facebook's transparency over the matter, it said in a recent release, explaining that "this is part of our ongoing effort to protect our platforms and the people who use them from bad actors who try to undermine our democracy."

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Facebook Messenger gets high-res 4K photo sharing support

Facebook Messenger gets high-res 4K photo sharing support

Facebook just made it possible for users to share higher resolution photos using Messenger, a welcomed feature considering how often users are on WiFi and LTE. Up until now, images shared through Messenger were fairly low-resolution -- not so low that they were unusable, but low enough to have a noticeable loss of quality. That changes with 4K image support.

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Honda will use Facebook to alert customers about Takata recall

Honda will use Facebook to alert customers about Takata recall

Honda will start using Facebook to alert its customers about the deadly Takata air bag recall, which continues to affect many drivers throughout the US. The recall revolves around the ongoing issue of faulty air bags that, when deployed, may rupture with too much force, causing injury or death to the person in the vehicle. Honda will produce its targeted alerts via Facebook's custom audience tool.

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