• BURN MEDIA
    • Motorburn
      Because cars are gadgets
    • Gearburn
      Incisive reviews for the gadget obsessed
    • Ventureburn
      Startup news for emerging markets
    • Jobsburn
      Digital industry jobs for the anti 9 to 5!

Social media

  • Here’s what you should know about Instagram’s new user settings

    For those who use Instagram fairly frequently, comment spam tends to be more of an annoyance than a problem. But the commenting system on the social network can also be used in an abusive way. Thankfully, the Facebook-owned company is now ringing in changes which should make it a more comfortable place to be. Kevin Systrom, the company's CEO and co-founder, published an outline on the Instagram blog this week, highlighting how it intends to change the commenting system. You can soon entirely disable, delete comments Although users can filter select words from their comment streams, Instagram will be giving users more power. "We’ll...

  • Another Stellenbosch bullying video makes rounds on Facebook

    Just when you thought the bullying videos were over for the year, another incident stemming from Stellenbosch has social media up in arms again. The new video, taking place once again at Stellenbosch's Luckoff High, was initially uploaded to Facebook by the Crime Intelligence and Community Awareness (CICA) page. According to CICA, the incident took place this week at Luckoff, and was sent to them by a follower. The video depicts a larger female pupil attacking a smaller female pupil. Although the video is just under 60 seconds long, a few punches are thrown before a male pupil steps in to...

  • Lufthansa’s Mildred joins Facebook’s bot family

    2016 has truly been the year of the chat bot, as Facebook, Microsoft and Google get in on the action. The latest company to craft a chat bot? Why, that would be Lufthansa... The German carrier has announced the availability of Mildred (at least it's not Gertrude), a Messenger chat bot that simply allows you to search for ticket prices via Facebook. As you'd expect, Mildred makes use of natural language processing, so you can pose questions in a human fashion rather than going for the search engine-style approach. It's all rather straightforward, as you specify a language (English or German -- more...

  • Here’s what Microsoft Zo thinks about Cape Town, social media and Pokemon

    Microsoft is old hat at this artificial intelligence chat bot thing. Remember the drama its teenage bot Tay caused on Twitter? Well, the company has now taken to the less-traversed Kik for some more interesting results. Its new bot on the platform, dubbed Zo, is a little more reserved than her curious, parrot-like sibling, and responds to politics and politically incorrect content and questions with a bat of the eyelids. This makes Zo a less impressionable bot. But is she fun to chat with? And what can she actually do? Taking a few minutes out of my day to talk to an...

  • Cape Town resident slammed on Twitter for Facebook post

    Update 1.20pm, 5 December: Cape Town resident Vanessa Hartley has published an apology to her Facebook timeline, before deleting her account: I would like to apologise for comments that were made on Facebook via my phone as my phone was at the bar … and someone thought they were very funny but now they upset me and a lot of people. Original article: Twitter users were on Sunday outraged after a Facebook post published by Cape Town resident Vanessa Hartley went viral. Hartley, a resident of Hout Bay, Cape Town, posted the below status update to her timeline, questioning the number of...

  • Got a monster connection? YouTube now has 4K live streams

    4K video streaming is still a significant obstacle for many internet users, requiring fast speeds and loads of data to take advantage of it. But 4K live streaming is an even bigger obstacle though, owing to the real-time nature of it all. Still, that hasn't stopped YouTube from supporting the standard, the company announced earlier this week. "Today, we're proud to say that we're taking 4K video one step further with the launch of 4K live streaming for both 360-degree videos and standard videos," YouTube explained. The first high-profile use for the standard came last night at The Game Awards, which saw...

  • Zuckerberg’s posts mistakenly stripped from Facebook

    What is it with companies taking down their CEO's social media messages this month? First Twitter's Jack Dorsey, and now Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg The latter reportedly removed several posts published by the Facebook CEO in what it's calling a "mistake". Eagle-eyed reporters at The Verge noticed that Zuckerberg's posts about fake news on the social media site, as well as commentary on the US elections, were stripped from his timeline Tuesday, only to later be restored just before 8pm SAST. Facebook's fake news problem One of these posts included a statement made by Zuckerberg on 18 November, regarding misinformation on Facebook. "The bottom line...

  • 20 of South Africa’s biggest YouTube personalities by the numbers [Digital All-Stars]

    Digital All Stars is a series of articles which aims to celebrate the best of South African digital. The articles, which will appear on Memeburn and Ventureburn, recognise and celebrate South Africa’s best digital entrepreneurs, business people, advertisers, and media professionals among others. Sure, data might be expensive and smartphones haven't reached everyone just yet, but that hasn't stopped South Africans from taking to video in a massive way over the past several years. We aren't just a nation of YouTube viewers though, because we also play host to a fascinating variety of South African YouTubers. So who are the biggest players in South...

  • Reddit CEO tampered with comments on Donald Trump subreddit

    Social aggregation site Reddit is known as a democratic platform. There are moderators, but they're generally called into action only when subreddit rules are broken. But the latest revelation from Reddit CEO Steve Huffman goes against this wholeheartedly. Huffman, under the Reddit name of /u/spez, has admitted to changing users' comments, replacing mentions of his username with those of mods from the 300 000-strong Donald Trump subreddit. "Yep. I messed with the 'fuck u/spez' comments, replacing 'spez' with r/the_donald mods for about an hour," he admitted on a thread. "It’s been a long week here trying to unwind the r/pizzagate stuff," Huffman adds. Comment...

  • Twitter goofs, temporarily suspends CEO Jack Dorsey’s account

    There are a few key things to remember when working at a large company. One, at least at Twitter, is to not suspend your boss's Twitter account. But it seems that yesterday someone forgot that very important rule. Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey was suspended from the website he founded earlier today, in what has been labeled by him an "internal mistake". Around 6pm SAST on Monday, tweeters discovered that the famous @Jack Twitter account was no longer active. Dorsey's account is also famous for posting the very first tweet on the network back in 2006. At the time of writing, Dorsey's account...

  • Instagram gets live videos, disappearing photos

    Facebook-owned Instagram continues its quest to take on Snapchat with two new features this week. The first new feature is live video for Instagram Stories, which is pretty self-explanatory. "Live video on Instagram Stories helps you connect with your friends and followers right now. When you’re done, your live story disappears from the app so you can feel more comfortable sharing anything, anytime," Instagram says on its blog. The two features are a big addition to Instagram, although they're definitely inspired by Snapchat "It's easy to go live — just swipe right from feed to open the camera, tap the 'Start Live Video'...

  • WhatsApp video calls: yes, it’s finally official

    Facetime and Skype still rule the roost when it comes to video calling, but if any company could take them on, it's WhatsApp. And the Facebook-owned service has done just that, allowing users to seamlessly call its contacts. "Today we're excited to announce the next step in our efforts to connect people -- WhatsApp video calling. In the coming days, WhatsApp's more than one billion users can make video calls across Android, iPhone, and Windows Phone devices," the company wrote in a blog post. WhatsApp could take the fight to Skype and Facetime with video calling The company explained the move, saying that sometimes voice...

  • 12+ Instagram snaps of last night’s supermoon from around the world

    In case you missed it, last night's supermoon was a pretty big deal. Although the phenomenon is fairly common, this particular example was a tad more special than most. It appeared around 14% larger and 30% brighter than this year's smallest full moon back in April. That's largely because the moon last night was much, much closer to earth. In fact, NASA suggests that it's the closest full moon to Earth so far this century. According to NASA, the term "supermoon" is a bit more scientific than the common it's just a larger full moon notion suggests. Supermoon is actually "a term...

  • Did fake news on Facebook contribute to US election?

    Some have questioned whether fake news and hoax articles have contributed to Donald Trump emerging victorious in the US elections last week. After all, the social network has seemingly seen a rise in fake news trending after it fired human editors. However, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg has denied that these stories influenced results, taking to (surprise!) Facebook over the weekend to share his thoughts. "After the election, many people are asking whether fake news contributed to the result, and what our responsibility is to prevent fake news from spreading. These are very important questions and I care deeply about getting them right. I...

  • WTF are Snapchat Spectacles?

    If you haven't a clue what Snapchat Spectacles are, don't worry. We had a similar debate in the office whether to publish this piece on Gearburn or Memeburn. But luckily, the social outweighed the gadgetry. We also imagine that this is exactly what Snapchat (or its parent company, now known as Snap) wanted too. Debuting on 10 November 2016 (just in time for people to get over the US Elections), Snapchat Spectacles is the company's jovial answer to smart wearables like Google Glass and Microsoft HoloLens. But it's much simpler than those devices. In fact, these US$130 sunglasses do two things...