• 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

  • Snapchat’s owner publishes its latest chapter of troubling financial results

    Judging by its latest batch of financial results, Snap is seemingly driven to outdo Twitter as one of the worst performing social media companies of the year. This week the owner of Snapchat published its Q2 2017 earnings report, and it missed a number of Wall Street estimates. Let's start with those all important user numbers. While Instagram earlier this year announced user numbers topping 700-million, with 250-million using Instagram Stories, Snapchat added just seven million users this quarter. That growth rate is down by 0.8% from 5% growth of the previous quarter. In terms of a global breakdown for Q2 2017, it...

  • Facebook Watch is a social video service for mobile and beyond

    As it slowly transforms from a social network into a media company, Facebook Watch is the company's latest step into the latter. With its website and apps running out of space for ad placements, an entirely new video app which feeds off the Facebook name seemingly makes business sense. The service is the company's social video platform, which will host a number of Facebook-funded shows, sports and shows from outside creators. There's no word on whether the entire swathe of video on Facebook will be available on Watch. "Shows are made up of episodes -- live or recorded -- and follow a...

  • Bonang’s book is so full of typos Exclusive Books is offering refunds

    Exclusive Books is offering full refunds to readers dissatisfied with socialite Bonang Matheba's book From A to B. The book was allegedly full of grammatical errors, and a reedited version should be on the shelves soon. In the meantime, Exclusive Books is so keen on saving its image its not even asking for receipts in exchange for refunds. All customers please take note of the following. pic.twitter.com/dFypasaKbx — Exclusive Books (@ExclusiveBooks) August 8, 2017 It has also cancelled all signings and events. In the two weeks since its release, From A to B has rocketed to the top of the store's bestselling list. Bonang's rapper boyfriend AKA tweeted...

  • The YouTube app now has a DM tab

    Google has added yet another messaging feature to its repertoire -- and this time it's on the YouTube app. Dubbed the "Shared" tab, the feature allows you to send videos and chat with friends directly in YouTube. These friends are anyone you connect with via email, phone number or an invitation link. That's right -- anyone to whom you've ever sent an email will now have your channel sitting in their shared tab for whenever they get nosy. With the click of a button, your university tutors, your colleagues, that friend you stopped speaking to years ago: they'll know every video...

  • Here’s how ‘kidnapped’ model Chloe Ayling was saved by Instagram

    British model Chloe Ayling has said Instagram saved her when she was allegedly abducted and held for ransom in Italy. The 20-year-old claims that she was lured to a fake set, but when she arrived in Milan, two men grabbed and drugged her before shoving her into a suitcase. She awoke handcuffed and was told by masked men that she was to be sold on the dark web to the highest bidder. "When the buyer gets tired of the girl he can give them to others or if she’s not longer of interest she’s ‘tiger meat’," one of them told Ayling. Her...

  • Baleka Mbete declares secret ballot: the Twitter before and after

    South Africa's Speaker of the House Baleka Mbete has announced that tomorrow's vote of no confidence in President Jacob Zuma will be held under a secret ballot. This comes after an announcement made in Parliament's Goodhope Chambers on Monday. While the news is welcoming for opposition parties and a test of strength for South Africa's Constitution, it's Twitter that saw the most remarkable change Monday. Prior to the announcement, tweets were marred by a foreboding and defeatist tone, with many predicting that Baleka Mbete would declare an open ballot. "She won't! She will not do it!" one user exclaims. She won't! She will not...

  • Despacito vs See You Again: which YouTube video will hit 3bn views first?

    "Despacito" and "See You Again" are currently locked in an epic, brutal popularity battle atop the YouTube charts. As the first and second most watched videos on Google's video platform, both have a chance to become the first ever video to break the three-billion view milestone. At present, "Despacito" is the plucky underdog, standing at 2.889-billion views, but it has caught and passed previous most viewed video on YouTube -- Psy's "Gangnam Style" -- within two weeks. "See You Again" however is now less than 10-million views away from hitting the three-billion view milestone. It became the most viewed video on YouTube...

  • #IfTwitterDidntExist: the internet imagines the 140-character apocalypse

    What would you possibly do if Twitter didn't exist? That's one of the most important questions being asked by the internet right now. Founded in 2006 by now-CEO Jack Dorsey, Twitter hasn't had the smoothest existence compared to its contemporaries. It was a breakthrough social network in many ways. While Facebook was toying with personal pages and Google possessed no tangible clue of what a social network is supposed to be, Twitter was the preppy kid with a brief but always sassy opinion. And users' opinion has always been at the fore of Twitter's social mechanics. While things looked up for Twitter prior to...

  • 11 must-know tips and tricks for Facebook Messenger

    Facebook Messenger has grown from a necessary evil to a semi-decent service in its own right, spanning messaging (obviously), chatbots and more. The app is one of the more popular mobile downloads around, but here are a few more ways you can get the most out of it. Disable those pesky chat heads We're starting off with a simple but effective tip for an annoying feature: those weird chat heads. The chat heads are essentially those chat bubbles that pop up when you receive a message, obscuring part of your screen and just being obnoxious. In any event, you'll want to visit your profile...

  • Instagram Stories is a remarkably successful one-year-old

    When Instagram Stories launched back in August 2016, the world just couldn't help but chastise Facebook for copying Snapchat's business model. But 12 months on, a quarter-of-a-billion users later, and yet another possible Facebook revenue stream, it looks to be one of the best digital business decisions made this decade. Snapchat isn't exactly a minnow though. The ephemeral messaging app still boasts an admirable userbase of around 166-million. But it isn't growing nearly as quickly as Facebook's version. Instagram Stories has rocketed to 250-million daily users in a year. In celebrating its birthday, Instagram also shed some more revealing light on Stories'...

  • YouTube’s machines are better at fighting terrorism than humans

    YouTube this week took to its blog, updating the internet on how it has been combating extremist content on its platform this past month. Part of this strategy -- outlined at the end of June -- included partnering with the likes of Microsoft, Facebook and Twitter to accelerate efforts to nullify online extremism. Beyond this, the company has also implemented a few hardware and policy changes. "We've always used a mix of technology and human review to address the ever-changing challenges around controversial content on YouTube," it writes. "We recently began developing and implementing cutting-edge machine learning technology designed to help us identify...

  • James van der Beek runs a better Diplo Twitter account than Diplo

    As the brains behind tracks like "Lean On", "Cold Water" and, uh, "Bubble Butt", Diplo is no stranger to the limelight. His official Twitter account also boasts around 2.33-million followers, which isn't minuscule at all. But while his timeline is laced with fans' adorable letters expressing their love for his music, his Diplo account isn't quite the best Diplo account. That honour belongs to James van der Beek. Yes, Dawson Leery of Dawson's Creek fame. Van der Beek's parody account -- @_diplo_ and not the more official @diplo -- also boats a verified badge, which makes it notably difficult to tell the actual...

  • 10 more SA photographers doing beautiful things on Instagram [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. Earlier this year, we took a look at a list of Instagrammers with less than 1000 followers who should seriously have a slew more. In this edition of Digital All Stars, we revisit a previous topic, but instead raise the bar to 2500 followers. Why? For one, we realised that there's a bevy of accounts across Instagram's sprawling...

  • Here’s what’s up with that suicidal McDonald’s Twitter account

    If you were on Twitter over the course of the weekend, then you probably saw at least one tweet from a Hong Kong McDonald's branch claiming it wanted to die. The unverified account seems to be part of a long-con hoax that paid off for about 24 hours before McDonald's came to shut down the fun. It all started in October last year, when @Mc_DonaldsHK tweeted about the new McSpicy Chicken Filet meal. It then updated sporadically with other promotions, like a genuine account would. The account eventually hit its target in May. The verified @McDonaldsCorp tagged the fake Hong Kong account in a...

  • #StJohnsCollege: South Africans react to racist teacher

    Joburg's prestigious St Johns College has found the ire of South African Twitter after failing to remove a teacher found guilty of racist misconduct. Geography teacher Keith Arlow underwent an internal investigation where he was found to have consistently undermined black students' intelligence, labelled Indian students "Nawab" and called Greek students "dirty". He was punished with a final written warning. Parents of the discriminated students told Huffington Post (which broke the story) that they are unhappy with the how the school dealt with the issue and want more than just a promise of "healing". Twitter believes much the same. Just a few hours after the...