In this month’s roundup, I go over some changes you may need to know about regarding social media, search, and more. You’ll find stuff about Google, Instagram Reels, Twitter, Tumblr, Mastodon, and ChatGPT in the May edition of our roundup.

Google to integrate AI results

It has been reported that Samsung is considering changing its default search engine on Android phones to Bing, due to Bing’s use of AI-powered search. Because of this, Google is intending to stay above the curve and use its own AI-powered search features. Google has been experimenting with its own AI called Bard which has produced mixed results. However, Google is looking to take this a step further with Magi.

New Instagram Reel features added

Meta has added some new features intended to make editing reels easier, and keep content creators engaging with their audience. These features include a new editing experience, a new place to discover trends like trending audio and hashtags on professional accounts, and updates to reel insights. Take a look at the official announcement on Meta’s Newsroom.

NPR and PBS leave Twitter

After having their content marked as “state-affiliated media” and “government-funded media,” both NPR and PBS have signaled to major news publishers that Twitter is no longer the place to be by vacating the platform. CBC has followed after being marked as “government-funded media” which means we may see more news publishers being affected.

Tumblr adding ActivityPub support

As Twitter continues its slow, painful decline, users are migrating to Tumblr and Mastodon to fulfill their short form, long form, and quirky content needs. Why not play nice with the other social media platforms? Tumblr is adding support for ActivityPub, the social protocol that powers Mastodon. What this means is that, in short, Mastodon users may be able to interact with Tumblr users, and vice versa, once it is supported. This directly aligns with what we see with WordPress regularly, supporting native embedding and more of other platforms, rather than walling off their social media platform. We’re excited to see where this goes!

Uploading your loved ones to AI to speak to them after they’re gone…?

This sort of “grief processing” (as it’s being toted) sounds dystopian to me. There’s been enough sci-fi about trying to decode dying/dead loved ones into a computer, like Black Mirror’s episode “Be Right Back”, the 2020 movie “Archive,” or the entire premise of Amazon’s comedy series “Upload”, just to name a few. Don’t we know by now that failing to allow grief to be processed as a normal part of life might seem harmless, but can be quite troubling? Imagine chatting with a version of your loved one and they recommend to you sponsored products, films, tv shows, and more. Then imagine chatting with this version of your loved one that takes on a life and personality of its own – to the point that you no longer remember the version of your loved one when they were alive. Maybe this is a road we could try not to walk down. I suppose I should stop being so shocked when Black Mirror keeps accurately guessing things time and time again.

Are you an artist wanting to build a portfolio site?

Building an artist portfolio site in WordPress: Pros and Cons

I’ll be speaking May 31st at 6 PM in Manchester, NH for New Hampshire WordPress about the pros and cons of building your portfolio site in WordPress! You don’t have to know anything about WordPress to join. RSVP at the NH WordPress Meetup group!

Did I miss something major? Let me know in the comments below!

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