social media services have developed dark modes for using their websites at
night. The glare of a bright screen at night usually puts a strain on a
person’s eyes. Twitter and Gmail already offer Dark Mode settings and Facebook
already has it for its Messenger app. According to software engineer Jane M.
Wong, Facebook proper is already using an early version of Dark Mode, but it
will take a while for this idea to be fully implemented.
Facebook frequently tests new features without making it
obvious. However, the company doesn’t have set timelines for when new features
are released. This new feature may negatively contribute to the problem of tech
addiction. Daytime addiction to social media is already common among web users.
Only time will tell if social media companies will ever begin to take the
problem of tech addiction seriously.
Facebook is set to launch a new service this fall codenamed
‘Catalina’, which will serve as a larger version of their current Facebook
Portal. Portal is like an iPad that primarily serves for making video calls and
listening to music.
Catalina will essentially be a bigger version of Portal. It
will connect with your television, enabling video calls on a massive scale. The
device will come with a remote and will steam to other boxes within the
household much like Apple TV.
Facebook has approached some of the big names in tech and
entertainment – Disney, Netflix, Amazon, Hulu and HBO – to discuss the prospect
of having their services streamed across Catalina. Imagine video chatting with
your friends while you are all watching the same movie.
FB is apparently not looking to create content,
they seem happy to leave it to others in hopes that major streaming services
sign on. One notable exception is
Google’s YouTube, which has apparently not been asked to join the party. More specifics are expected as we approach this
fall’s release date
Facebook created “Kids Messenger” back in 2017 pledging a “safe space” for kids to chat and connect with one another, with approval settings set by the parents. The main draw to the app was the fact that parents could protect their kids from talking to strangers and ensure that their children were chatting among approved friends. The app is for children under the age of 13.
Despite this being a good idea to the core, Facebook has misstepped again. Recently a bug was brought to light that enables unapproved members to join into group chats with children. Facebook is aware of the issue and has claimed it is only in a select number of cases. They have since fixed the bug so there should be no further issues.
What is concerning is the thought that this has gone on for quite some time. How long has Facebook known about it? Were there adults posing as children popping into these group chats? There are a clear lack of regulations in the children’s chat space.
Companies like Facebook that operate in this market must be more strictly regulated to ensure the safety they pledge, as well as incentivized to fix any problems such as that with the Kids Messenger with haste. This bug could have been going on for a significant amount of time, with Facebook taking their sweet time to fix it. That must change if children’s safety in online communication is truly the goal.