Policy Changes and New Features on Social Media and Mobile Platforms

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Facebook Modifies Requirements for Promotions

On August 27, Facebook announced on its Facebook for Business Blog that it has modified the Pages Terms that govern brands' Pages on Facebook to make it easier for businesses of all sizes to create and administer promotions on Facebook.

Facebook removed the requirement that promotions on Facebook be administered only through apps. Now promotions may be administered on Page Timelines and in apps on Facebook. For example, businesses can now:
• Collect entries by having users post on the Page or comment/"Like" a Page post
• Collect entries by having users message the Page
• Utilize "Likes" as a voting mechanism

However, Facebook did not change its policy about personal Timelines: as before, businesses cannot administer promotions on personal Timelines.

Companies can still run promotions through an app. In Facebook's new downloadable Promotion Guidelines, Facebook compares creating a promotion in an app with creating a promotion on a Page. Creating a promotion with an app on Facebook provides more space and flexibility for content than Page posts alone, and promotions run through apps can collect data in a secure, structured way that may be appealing to advertisers, particularly larger brands. Creating a promotion with a Page is faster and easier, and Page posts about promotions are eligible to be displayed in the News Feeds of the people who "Like" the Page and can be promoted to a broader audience. According to Facebook, businesses always have the option of using both an app and their Page to administer a promotion.

Facebook also modified its Pages Terms relating to tagging content in promotions. In order to maintain the accuracy of Page content, the updated Pages Terms now prohibit Pages from tagging or encouraging people to tag themselves in content that they are not actually depicted in. In an example provided by Facebook, it's OK to ask people to submit names of a new product in exchange for a chance to win a prize; however, it's not OK to ask people to tag themselves in pictures of a new product in exchange for a chance to win a prize.

Apple Changes Certain Terms for Kids' Apps

Apple has reportedly modified its App Store Review Guidelines in several ways that will impact mobile apps for children. The revised guidelines state that apps for children under 13 must include a privacy policy, may not include behavioral advertising (such as ads based on in-app activity), and must obtain parental consent before allowing children to link out of the app or engage in commerce. In addition, contextual ads must be age-appropriate, and apps in the Kids Category of the App Store must be made specifically for children "ages 5 and under, ages 6-8, or ages 9-11." Mobile app developers typically try to make sure their apps comply with the App Store Review Guidelines before submitting their apps to Apple for approval.

Apple will also allow, for the first time, children under 13 to sign up for an iTunes user account, as long as the account is tied to an approved educational institution. These changes precede Apple's launch of its new mobile operating system, which is expected this fall.

Pinterest Launches "Rich Pins" and "Price Watch" Features

Pinterest is rolling out "Rich Pins" which display automatically updated details like prices, availability, movie reviews and ingredients, and a link to a brand's website. So far Rich Pins are only available for three specific categories of pins: products, movies, and recipes. Product pins include real-time pricing, availability, and where to buy the item; movie pins include ratings, cast members, and reviews to help Pinterest users learn about new movies; recipe pins include ingredients, cooking times, and serving information. Brands need to apply to Pinterest and program their websites with specific meta tags to start using Rich Pins. Pinterest also announced a "Price Watch" feature that will allow Pinterest users to receive real-time email alerts about a product they have pinned when the price has changed.