As 2017 comes to an end, it’s time to look back at the stories and news that defined the past year. There is much to cover but we selected a few.

20: A New Study Claimed Social Media Can Help People Lose Weight
The research claims that sharing your weight loss journey on social media can improve the odds of successfully shedding the extra kilos. According to TOI, researchers examined the role of virtual communities and public commitment in setting and reaching weight loss goals (goo.gl/VeAzNg).

19: Instagram celebrated 800 million users, with 500 million Daily Active Users
Carolyn Everson, vice president of global marketing solutions at Facebook announced that the photo and video sharing platform added another 100 million monthly users, bringing the app to 800 million monthly active users, up from 700 million in April. Five hundred million of those being daily active users. The announcement further solidifies Facebook as one of the most dominant companies in online advertising, posing a challenge for underdogs (goo.gl/SwLWGx).

18: WhatsApp Introduced Live Location Sharing to its 1 Billion Users
The newly introduced live location sharing is dynamic and updates ones location in real time, even when WhatsApp is in the background. One’s location is shared at the chat level, which means you can share your live location in a one-on-one WhatsApp conversation or a group chat (goo.gl/QSJ9qc).

17: Instagram Allowed its Users to Follow Hashtags
Instagram launched a feature that allows users to search for hashtags and also stay connected with hobbies, passions, and communities – making their interests more discoverable. You search for a topic/hashtag you’re interested in or tap on a hashtag from any post, open the hashtag page and tap on the follow button (goo.gl/R6Q7Tp).

16: Facebook to Launch ‘Messenger Kids’ – a Standalone App For Children Under 13 Years
Facebook announced it was set to launch a messaging app targeting kids under 13 to able to chat with their parents and with friends approved by their parents. The app will come with a slew of controls for parents. The service won’t let children add their own friends or delete messages – allowing only parents to do that (goo.gl/KDcVqj).

15: Facebook Messenger Reported 17 Billion Video Chat Sessions in 2017
AFP reported that Facebook Messenger had recorded 17 billion real time video chats – two times as many video chat sessions in 2017 compared to 2016. The reported showed that people video chatted across each other all around the world – including Antarctica (goo.gl/95VX52).

14: Twitter Introduced an Easier Way to Tweet a Thread
Twitter brought the ability for its users to send more than one tweet at a time making it simpler to thread Tweets together, and according to Twitter, hundreds of thousands of threads are Tweeted every day! But this method of Tweeting, while effective and popular, can be tricky for some to create and it’s often tough to read or discover all the Tweets in a thread (goo.gl/DkhgjL).

13: Facebook Was Reported Testing Facial Recognition (FaceID) for Unlocking User Accounts
Tech Crunch reported that Facebook was set to get its own version of Face ID – a feature we have seen Cupertino-based tech firm, Apple Inc. unveil on latest its iPhone flagship, the iPhone X that was launched in September alongside the iPhone 7 and 7+. The method was said to regain access to a Facebook account by using facial recognition in case one got locked out of their Facebook account (goo.gl/jKi2Qt).

12: Periscope Launched ‘Super Hearts’ For its Apps to Help Broadcasters Earn Money
Twitter Inc. launched ‘Super Hearts‘ for its tweeps to be able to earn money by streaming live on its Periscope service, a first for Twitter and a way for the company to try to compete with YouTube and others in the search for Internet talent. Broadcasters who received the equivalent of about USD$175 (Roughly 628,250 UGX) in Super Hearts were designated as “Super Broadcasters” and were able to cash out their money as earnings while everyone who sends Super Hearts were added to a Leaderboard to display who’s given the most love to the broadcaster (goo.gl/hqkGXB).

11: Facebook Tests WhatsApp Shortcut Button on Android
Facebook may have plans to bring its marquee service and WhatsApp closer together. The company was seen testing a new feature with select users which lets them quickly switch between Facebook and WhatsApp apps through a shortcut button. The WhatsApp shortcut button appeared on Facebook feed, tapping on the shortcut opens the WhatsApp app (goo.gl/6Z7fXN).

10: Tanzanian Government Regulated Social Media
Social media users in Tanzania who break the new law set by the government will be blocked by the Tanzania Communications Regulatory Authority (TCRA) after the government drafted regulations for online content producers and users on social media. The TCRA published the draft Electronic and Postal Communications (Online Content) Regulations, 2017, and the bill will come into force once signed by the information minister (goo.gl/zPFjYU).

9: The Impact of Social Media on the Ugandan Society Today – Pros and Cons
In the year 2017, Uganda’s social status has grown in quite a number of ways. In my opinion, this is how social media has impacted the Ugandan life (goo.gl/f7eecQ).

8: Facebook Plans For Monetizing WhatsApp
According to a Facebook blog post, Menlo Park-based social networking firm revealed that it was looking to put steps in place to monetize its owned messaging app; WhatsApp. They said they would test new features to make it easier for people to communicate with businesses they want to reach on WhatsApp (goo.gl/reGTkQ).

7: @BarackObama’s Tweet on ‘Charlottesville Violence’ Became the Most Liked Ever and 4th Most Retweeted
Former U.S. President Barack Obama’s who currently has over 93.3 million followers on Saturday 12th August,2017 posted a tweet in response to the deadly violence in the Charlottesville, Virginia rally that has garnered over 3 million likes (1.2 million retweets), making it the most-approved post in the Twitter’s history surpassing Ariana Grande’s distraught message after the Manchester terror attack in May (goo.gl/mfAaig).

6: WhatsApp Introduced Verified Business Accounts to its App
WhatsApp announced that it was introducing verified business accounts to the app in order to increase the convenience with which users are able to communicate with the businesses. How this features ‘WhatsApp Business’ verification was/(and is) currently limited to a small number of businesses that are currently participating in a pilot program (goo.gl/k3i5MW).

5: #MugabeResigns: Twitter Reacted to Robert Mugabe’s Resignation
Jubilant Zimbabweans celebrated late into the night after Robert Mugabe resigned as president –  having held power for 37 years and even once said that “only God” could remove him as president. The shock came in the form of a letter read out by the speaker of parliament, Jacob Mudenda (goo.gl/Yh6EsB).

4: Donald Trump’s Twitter Account Was Temporary Terminated For 11 minutes
A Twitter customer support employee on his last day working with the firm decided to bring down Donald Trump’s Twitter account (@realdonaldtrump). The U.S. 45th President account was terminated for a period of 11 minutes on Thursday evening shortly before 7 p.m (goo.gl/UNNnFn).

3: How Social Media Has Negatively Affected Our Society
Social media is not only a useful marketing channel for businesses, but it’s also a crucial part of the modern lifestyle. Social media allows you to instantly access personal injury lawyer Hamilton site, as fast as any other site out there. We can count some positive impacts social media has but why leave out the negative? (goo.gl/QP5y2G)

2: WhatsApp Officially Rolled Out the ‘Revoke’ Feature to all its Users
WhatsApp after a year now – launched its Recall and Revoke feature globally to help users deleted embarrassing messages or mis-sent to messages (wrong person). The features has three (3) options; Delete from Everyone, Delete from Me, and Cancel – and can only be applied or used in a period of only 7 minutes (goo.gl/68586C).

1: Twitter Finally Doubled its Tweet Limit to 280 Characters
Micro-blogging website; Twitter Inc. doubled its tweet characters to 280 allowing tweeps express themselves more and also a bid to draw in more users and boost engagement at the social network. This became the first time the tweet character cap had been raised since the company’s foundation 11 years ago (goo.gl/sGdLKJ).

Happy Holidays !!!!