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Instagram to Warn On ‘Potentially Offensive’ Captions

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Instagram to warn for “potentially offensive” captions and Facebook introduces Facebook Pay.

Welcome to “#SocialStocks,” The Fly’s weekly recap of Wall Street’s reactions to social media stock news.


On December 16, Instagram announced that it is rolling out a new feature that notifies people when their captions on a photo or video may be considered offensive, and “gives them a chance to pause and reconsider their words before posting.” Instagram said: “As part of our long-term commitment to lead the fight against online bullying, we’ve developed and tested AI that can recognize different forms of bullying on Instagram… Today, when someone writes a caption for a feed post and our AI detects the caption as potentially offensive, they will receive a prompt informing them that their caption is similar to those reported for bullying. They will have the opportunity to edit their caption before it’s posted.” Instagram is a member of the Facebook Family of Apps (FB). 


On December 12, Deborah Liu, VP, Marketplace & Commerce announced the introduction of Facebook Pay, which will provide people with a “convenient, secure and consistent payment experience across Facebook, Messenger, Instagram and WhatsApp.” Facebook Pay will make transactions easier “while continuing to ensure your payment information is secure and protected,” Liu said. She added that Facebook Pay will begin rolling out on Facebook and Messenger in the U.S. for fundraisers, in-game purchases, event tickets, person-to-person payments on Messenger and purchases from select Pages and businesses on Facebook Marketplace, noting that over time, “we plan to bring Facebook Pay to more people and places, including for use across Instagram and WhatsApp.”  


On December 18, Deutsche Bank analyst Lloyd Walmsley raised his price target for Facebook to $270 from $260, calling the company a top large cap pick for 2020. The analyst told investors in a research note that he is bullish on Facebook and sees the “renewed strength” in the core Facebook app becoming a “critical leg of the story” around the shares in 2020. As this becomes clearer over the next few quarters, he said investors should gain comfort in terminal value in the core Facebook app, leading to multiple expansion on top of revenue and earnings upside. His updated sum-of-the-parts valuation assumes a higher valuation for core Facebook. Meanwhile, Citi analyst Hao Yan lowered his price target for Twitter to $36 from $45 after updating his model to reflect the company’s results and management commentary. The analyst maintains a Neutral rating on the shares. He remains “largely concerned” on the near-term revenue outlook for the stock due to the MAP impacts. 


Facebook’s senior leadership is increasingly divided over how to address criticism of the company’s effect on U.S. politics, with board member and billionaire investor Peter Thiel serving as an influential voice advising CEO Mark Zuckerberg not to bow to public pressure, people familiar with the matter told The Wall Street Journal on Monday. According to the people, Thiel has argued that Facebook should stick to its controversial decision to continue accepting political advertisements and to not fact-check those from politicians. “Many of the decisions we’re making at Facebook come with difficult trade-offs and we’re approaching them with careful rigor at all levels of the company, from the board of directors down,” a Facebook spokesman said.

Originally Posted on December 18, 2019 – #SocialStocks: Instagram to Warn On ‘Potentially Offensive’ Captions

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