TicToc is the new breaking news channel from Bloomberg and Twitter, showing the latter is serious about being a media distribution platform. I have to think between this, Cheddar and a few other video shows Twitter will eventually break out some sort of separate channel akin to Snapchat’s Discover to get more attention.

Penske Media, which already owns Variety and other entertainment publications and websites, has acquired a controlling interest in Rolling Stone, which the company says it will revamp.

Content Marketing

The sponsored filters on Snapchat can now feature animated messages and images, a change the platform hopes will make the feature more engaging and therefore more widely used.

Enhanced direct message functionality on Twitter is being rolled out more widely, allowing brands to add more buttons to replies and better manage conversations, enhancing its usefulness as a customer support platforms.

Social Media

Facebook is removing the “Disputed Flags” from stories deemed to be questionable or outright false, citing research showing such labels actually reinforce its veracity among people whose preconceived notions or beliefs are validated by such stories. Instead it will show related stories from trusted sources and fact checks, shown to be more effective. I’ve long posited that Facebook simply validating news sources would help this problem since it’s little different from what any media editor would do. But oh, that’s right, it claims it’s not a media company. Sorry.


More music labels are signing on to YouTube’s upcoming new or revamped subscription music service. Facebook has also signed a licensing deal with Universal Music Group that will allow music from that label’s artists to be included in videos uploaded by users and be used for a variety of other vaguely-defined purposes.

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Chris Thilk is a freelance writer and content strategist who lives in the Chicago suburbs.