BLOG POST BY: Rowan Byers
January 23, 2023

Social Media News Round Up #86 – TikTok Faces Potential Ban in Europe & US

Each week the insights team at The Goat Agency pull together the latest news from the social space in a weekly social media news round-up. This week we cover TikTok’s looming ban threat extending to Europe, T2 the Twitter alternative receives investment injection, and artists launch legal action against generative AI tools.

Don’t forget you can follow us on LinkedIn, Instagram, TikTok and Twitter for real-time announcements of all our new blog content!

Tiktok Ban

Contents

TikTok Now Faces a Potential Ban in Europe and the US

Getty Images and Collective Artists are Suing Generative AI Tools

Twitter Alternative T2 Receives $1.1 Million Injection From Investors 

Twitter to Refine Tweet Recommendations

New YouTube Developments Provide Further Context to Policy Violations

TikTok Now Faces a Potential Ban in Europe and the US

TikTok is back up against the ropes this week with yet another ban threat looming. First came US lawmakers, now the EU wants a slice of the action.

Europe has warned TikTok that it will need to adhere with its laws and regulations, or risk being banned in the region.

The EU’s Internal Market Commissioner, Thierry Breton, met with TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew to discuss the app’s obligations in the region, focusing on the protection of young users.

TikTok has since received an official warning that could see the platform banned completely in the region if it does not meet the new Digital Services Act, which comes into play from September.

Breton noted that if the rules were to come into effect today, then TikTok would likely be in violation of the legislation, putting the app’s operation in Europe at risk.

TikTok finds itself in hot water currently across western markets, both the US and Europe are out for blood. In the US, TikTok faces a potential ban over its potential connection to the Chinese Government, and now in Europe over GDPR and its detriment toward younger audiences.

Getty Images and Collective Artists are Suing Generative AI Tools

With generative AI tools like ChatGPT and DALL-E growing in demand, a number of artists are taking legal action to stop their work being used as source material, which robs them of fair compensation.

MidJourney, Stable Diffusion and DeviantArt have each been targeted for infringing the rights of creators. Getty Images has also launched its own legal action against the makers of Stable Diffusion over unlicensed usage of Getty’s content.

Artists are outraged that apps like DALL-E can use work that they charge for as the source material for new AI-generated imagery, for which there is no legislation to protect against. 

This is something that artists hope to iron out through the launch of legal action.

“A trio of artists have launched a lawsuit against Stability AI and Midjourney, creators of AI art generators Stable Diffusion and Midjourney, and artist portfolio platform DeviantArt, which recently created its own AI art generator, DreamUp. The artists allege that these organizations have infringed the rights of ‘millions of artists’ by training their AI tools on five billion images scraped from the web ‘with­out the con­sent of the orig­i­nal artists’.” Writes The Verge.

This isn’t the first lawsuit against AI generators. Another group is suing Microsoft, GutHub , and OpenAI over an AI programming tool ‘CoPilot’, that produces code based on examples of existing code on the web.

There are a bunch of risks that could harm the progress of generative AI tools, but they’re unlikely to fade away completely. With, Microsoft looking to take a large share within OpenAI, it seems possible that these tools will only enter into the mainstream sooner rather than later, as opposed to being restricted.

What is concerning, for content creators, is that there are no current regulations in place to prohibit generative AI tools from taking an artists work, that they charge for, and using it to form imagery.

It’ll be interesting to track the progress of the aforementioned lawsuits, and how lawmakers can impose some form of regulation to refine the connection between artists and AI.

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Twitter Alternative T2 Receives $1.1 Million Injection From Investors 

Something that started out as just a few tweets is now gearing itself up to offer an alternative to Twitter. 17 investors have come together to raise $1.1 million for a company dubbed T2.

The potential Twitter alternative is the project of Gabor Cselle, formerly of Google and Twitter. During Elon Musk’s early reign at Twitter, Cselle composed a series of tweets regarding opportunities that Musk was missing. That sane thread led to the inception of T2.

While the idea of T2 is hardly revolutionary, that actually works in Cselle’s favor. In his own words he will create “a familiar place that is very close to the original (Twitter).”

Taking on Twitter is by no means a small feat, but Cselle has gathered a strong team of investors to back his project. Within that team are individuals like Bradley Horowitz, Google Vice President, and former Wikipedia CEO Katherine Maher.

T2 has a long road ahead, and like previous Twitter alternatives Mastodon and Hive, it will need to prove its sustainability or force being taken offline.

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Twitter to Refine Tweet Recommendations

So Twitter now has its own ‘For You’ feed. Well, people are already sick of it. Users on Twitter have questioned the sudden influx of recommended tweets, which prompted the platform to release a new swipeable ‘Following’ feed, acting as a green light to pump even more tweets out.

According to Elon Musk, Twitter has gone too hard too soon on the recommendations, and will scale back effective immediately.

Although it hasn’t been addressed directly, the implication is that creators are seeing a large drop in engagement as a result of the increase in recommended tweets.

Twitter would like to follow in the footsteps of TikTok, eventually offering users a constant feed of tweets that they’ll enjoy, which in turn helps boost engagement on the main feed.

The challenge that Twitter faces is that the recommendations are somewhat all over the place, and that’s down to its algorithms in this respect not being very good.

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New YouTube Developments Provide Further Context to Policy Violations

YouTube has been developing a timestamps option, which provides more detail as to when a violation has occurred within a video.

The timestamps show creators exactly when the violation has taken place, and which specific policy it is in violation of. YouTube has included links to further information about the policy, offering a far more transparent process for upload issues.

In addition to this, YouTub has also been working on a new guided resolution flow for violations and reports. This aims to provide creators with more information on the next steps they should take in response to concerns.

This process is likened to the timestamp alerts, but with extra steps, including extra information that will help creators understand exactly what has occurred, and what they can do to fix issues.

“We’ll show where the policy violation occurs, what precise policy was violated, and what that means for the individual piece of content. And at the end of the guided resolution flow, we’ll show creators what options they have going forward and make it easy to take those next steps.” Added YouTube.

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And that’s all for this week, but don’t forget to follow us on LinkedIn, Instagram, TikTok and Twitter for real-time announcements of all our new blog content!

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Written by: Rowan Byers

Insights Executive at The Goat Agency