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Weekly Update - October 30, 2021: YouTube, Facebook/Meta, Instagram

Happy Halloween! Whether you are dressing up and partying or spending a quiet weekend at home, I hope you have more treats than tricks.

There were a number of updates announced this week at Facebook Connect and Adobe Max. The biggest news was Facebook (the parent company) changing their name to Meta, and going all in on the “metaverse”. Adobe announced a number of product updates, including limited versions of Illustrator and Photoshop coming to the web.

Plus there are tips and updates for YouTube creators, AdSense publishers, Instagrammers, Google productivity tools and more. 

YouTube Policy Update

Starting November 1, YouTube videos “made for kids” that are “low quality” may lose monetization. Channels with low quality content aimed at children may have their monetization completely suspended.

What does “low quality” mean? YouTube is initially focusing on content that encourages negative behaviors or attitudes, but they also don’t want content that is overly commercial or promotional, deceptively educational, hindering comprehension, sensational or misleading, or has strange use of children's characters.

Learn more about how this update may affect your partnered YouTube channel.

Top News and Updates

Facebook Connect: building the metaverse

This week was probably the last Facebook Connect, as the parent company is now called “Meta”. In addition to the name change, there were a number of announcements about their VR and AR platforms, including opportunities for creators.
  • Facebook’s parent company is now called Meta, as in metaverse, the “next evolution of social technology”. Facebook, the social network, has increasingly come under fire for prioritizing “engagement” and profit over privacy and the social good. The new name may help distance Meta’s other products (Instagram, WhatsApp, Horizon, etc) from Facebook. It sounds like for the most part, this is just a name change.
  • If you have an Oculus Quest VR headset, you can immerse yourself in Meta’s “Horizon” metaverse. Horizon Worlds is a creator space with social world building tools. There is an accelerator program and creator fund to encourage “world” creation. There is also Horizon Venues, for live events, and office-like Horizon Workrooms and other business tools.
  • Meta’s Horizon Home, lets you use your Quest VR headset to hang out with your friends, and (soon) access 2D apps like Slack, Canva, Dropbox, Instagram and more Progressive Web Apps (PWAs). Why would you want that? “This new capability will let you chat with work colleagues, access your files, update your social feeds, and more without having to remove your headset.”
  • Spark AR is Meta’s augmented reality (AR) platform for enhancing Instagram Stories and Reels. Polar is a new experimental (iOS-only) app powered by Spark AR, that allows creators to easily create and share effects and filters. There are also new tools for advanced creators to make it easier to place 3D AR objects in the real world. If you are interested in getting started, there are tutorials and a new Spark AR Certification course.


  • October 31-November 12: COP26 - the United Nations international climate change conference - meets in Glasgow. If you aren’t in Glasgow, you can virtually visit the associated Green Zone events and exhibits by visiting the Green Zone page hosted by Google Arts & Culture, and by subscribing to the COP26 YouTube channel.
  • November 3-4: Google Cloud Government & Education Summit. Register now. “The event will open doors to digital transformation with live Q&As, problem-solving workshops and leadership sessions, designed to bring forward the strongest talent, the most inclusive teams, and the boldest ideas.”
  • Through November 7: There’s a new YouTube Shorts dance challenge using Indian rapper Badshah’s catchy new single “Jugnu”.


  • YouTube’s “New to You” is now available on the YouTube homepage on desktop, mobile and TVs. This will show you content that you haven’t seen before, but YouTube thinks you will like. This can help you find new creators and videos to watch.
  • Comment filters are now available in the YouTube Studio mobile app. That makes it easier to find comments that you have not yet responded to, or that contain a question.
  • YouTube Chief Marketing Officer Danielle Tiedt shares three lessons she has learned about inclusion. The key take home message: “Change takes more than a marketing campaign.”
  • Because YouTube Chapters are used as a source of metadata in YouTube search, it’s worth optimizing their text. That’s especially true if your videos only have automatically added Chapters that might need tweaking.

Web Publishers

Photos and Images

  • Adobe Fresco is a free drawing and painting app for Windows, iPhone and iPad. Now you can add motion to your images.
  • Adobe has also launched “Content Credentials”, a new way to add attribution to images. Adobe Stock images have these credentials, and Photoshop users can add information to the images. You can include your social media profile and crypto wallet address, which will be displayed in a number of NFT marketplaces to show authenticity. To otherwise view Content Credentials, open the image on the Verify website.



  • Google Fi will soon have end-to-end encrypted phone calls, with some limitations. This only applies to 1:1 calls between Google Fi users on Android phones. End-to-end encrypted messaging is available in 1:1 conversations in Android Messages with chat features enabled.

Social Media



  • Google has a new tool that lets under-18s (or their parents or guardians) request images of themselves be removed from the Google Search results.
That’s all the updates for this week. Subscribe to get the Weekly Update in your email inbox or favorite feed reader every week. Miss last week’s update? Get it here.

Image: Halloween pumpkin candy by “Marketplace Designers” on Canva (free to use)