Yesterday, approximately 17 million Facebook Live users tuned in to an awe-inspiring video of nature at its fiercest: A massive, swirling supercell storm. In the sense that "live" means "actually happening right now", however, this stream was 100 per cent fake.
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Predicting the future is near impossible -- but that doesn‘t stop us all from having a red hot go. Human beings have been predicting the future since the beginning of history and the results range from the hilarious to the downright uncanny.
One thing all future predictions have in common: they‘re rooted in our current understanding of how the world works. It‘s difficult to escape that mindset. We have no idea how technology will evolve, so our ideas are connected to the technology of today.
Like regular action cameras, 360-degree video is slowly coming to life around the world. The second iteration of the Gear 360 supports a significantly higher video resolution than the original, and when paired with a recent Samsung smartphone it can live broadcast 360-degree video to Facebook and YouTube.
Since it debuted nearly a year ago, Facebook Live has been rife with content moderation problems. The latest in a long line of horrific examples comes from Chicago, where the Associated Press reports that a missing 15-year-old girl was allegedly sexually assaulted by up to six people while about 40 people watched the stream.
In the past day, boxing fans on the internet went a little bit nuts. The long-awaited (like, decade-long) rematch between Anthony Mundine and Danny Green -- a controversial 2006 fight itself -- wasn't really the reason, though. It was the match before that, between a rugby player and his slightly chubby, boyish rival.
That match was enough to get a Holden mechanic from Brisbane to stream the fight to the world using Facebook Live video on his phone. Foxtel, though, wasn't exactly happy.
Picture this: you're at home, alone, and you suddenly feel an overwhelming urge to bellow into the abyss. Perhaps you've just formulated a take too spicy for the written word. Perhaps you're just mad about shit. You open up your Facebook app but right when you tap "LIVE" you catch sight of your face -- hideous, gnarled, cracked and broken. You swiftly close out of the app, burdened with a heavy sense of grief. Still burdened with that yearning to release your hot take, you begin to weep.
So far, Facebook Live's partnerships with digital publishers has yielded, among other things, an exploded watermelon and a failed interview with the US president. Now, new details have emerged about Facebook's plans to pay not just media outlets and celebrities, but also content creators from Vine and YouTube. And boy, did I ever pick the wrong line of work!
There's been a lot of discussion over the ethics of posting violent live-streams on Facebook, and the social media site has decided to release subjective guidelines: if a person posts violent content to "raise awareness," the video can stay. If someone shared the same video to mock the victim, it will be removed.
Let me get this out of the way: the trillion dollar US F-35 fighter jet program is an embarrassing mess. But it's hard not to marvel at the very expensive technology's promises. This conflict squeezed my brain this week, when the Air Force stopped by Gizmodo's US office with a $US400,000 ($554,212) F-35 helmet in hand. They even let me wear it.