Mark Zuckerberg Takes the Stage at Facebook F8
Mark Zuckerberg has taken the stage to deliver a keynote at F8, Facebook’s annual developer’s conference.
The CEO addressed Facebook’s ongoing data privacy scandal, election meddling issues, and fake news problems, recapping the company’s efforts to fix those problems. But he also tried to move the narrative forward with new product and feature announcements.
“We are all here because we are optimistic about the future,” said Zuckerberg. “We have real challenges to address but we have to keep that sense of optimism too. What I learned this year is we have to take a broader view of our responsibility.”
Facebook gets into dating
And Facebook is adding new features for dating, Zuckerberg announced. There are 200 million people who have marked themselves as single on Facebook, he said.
“This is going to be for building real long term relationships, not just hookups, it’s going to be in the Facebook app but it’s totally optional. It’s opt in… we have designed this with privacy and safety in mind from the beginning… you will only be suggested people who are not your friends.”
The tool will let people build separate profiles just for dating using their first names only. Their regular friends won’t see these profiles. People using the feature will be able to pick what groups or events they want to “unlock” to see more potential matches with the same interests.
There’s also a separate inbox for dating messages that doesn’t allow photos, Facebook Chief Product Officer Chris Cox said in his own presentation.
A fresh start
Shortly before Zuckerberg’s keynote began, the company announced a new privacy feature that will, once launched, allow users to clear their browsing history on Facebook, including what they’ve clicked on and which websites they’ve visited.
Instagram adds video chatting and more
Instagram is getting a few updates as well. The photo-sharing app is adding group video chats to its messaging tool. The video can be minimized so that users can chat while still liking photos and swiping through their feed. Other new features coming to Instagram include augmented reality overlays from developers, like funny mustaches and hats, and new ways for third-party apps to have videos post directly to stories on Instagram and Facebook.
Mark jokes about his testimony
Zuckeberg was cheerful and even giggly at times during his presentation, a far cry from his stiff testimony two weeks ago in front of Congress. He had a much more receptive audience at F8, with developers cheering like he was a rock star and even yelling things like “thank you!” at the stage.
Zuckerberg called out “Watch Party,” a tool announced in January that lets you watch shows while chatting about them with your Facebook friends.
“Let’s say that your friend is testifying in Congress, for example. Now you’re going to be able to bring your friends together and you can laugh together and you can cry together. Some of my friends actually did this! Let’s not do that again anytime soon,” Zuckerberg said.
The event comes more than a month after news broke that Cambridge Analytica, a data firm with ties to President Donald Trump’s campaign, accessed information from as many as 87 million Facebook users without their knowledge.
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