Future Tense: Social Media

The Global R&D Team within Accenture Interactive share their insights on the topic of the future of social media. Content below is from Chloé Cappelier and Pauline Balan, R&D, Sophia Antipolis

Social Media has understood that its survival and popularity depend mainly on creators. For this reason, our future social media will place the creator’s remuneration at the heart of its concerns. Instagram and TikTok are reportedly testing the idea of allowing their creators to charge subscriptions for their content. Snapchat will put ads within stories and share the money with creators. It’s the first-time creators will get a cut of the ad revenue on Stories.

The remuneration of creators is also done with Web3 and NFTs. Social media collaboration marketplace Pearpop is launching a Web3 app called Pearproof. It will allow creators to mint dynamic NFTs that gain value depending on their virality on social media. Facebook and Instagram are reportedly thinking about how to make, present and sell NFTs.

Whether they are real or virtual, creators who can sometimes be considered as real influencers must respect a certain framework. Meta is notably working on the development of ‘Ethical Framework’ for the use of Virtual Influencers.

Besides this, social media is trying to diversify more and more by exploiting certain trends. Notably, a virtual world is emerging in addition to our real-world and is attracting new social relationships: the Metaverse era is underway.

For example, we have witnessed the creation of Horizon Worlds, a social VR platform created by Meta. It provides access to a vast VR playground, where you can hang out and interact with your friends. Meta also demonstrated a prototype of an AI system that allows users to generate or import objects into a virtual world simply by speaking commands.

This virtual world creates new types of interactions, and couples even celebrate their virtual wedding there.

But Metaverse is not the only way for social media to diversify itself. Since the success of Clubhouse, social media are increasingly focusing on audio. We can quote Amazon which has launched Amp whose goal is to turn any user into a radio DJ, able to program a playlist and talk to listeners. Twitter Spaces also continues testing podcast-like features.

Social networks must also satisfy the collective desire for more transparency. While they can be used by companies to improve their image, some are using them to reveal truths. On International Women’s Day, the Gender Pay Gap Bot didn’t hesitate to post real data on Twitter about the gender pay gap in each organization.

Countries are also trying to better regulate social networks, whether for example on targeted ads with the European Parliament, adult cyber abuse with Australia’s eSafety Commission, body image with the UK Parliament and more recently in EU, the Digital Markets Act.

Social Platforms also have a key role to play in major global conflicts and can be exploited by belligerents. In relation to the war in Ukraine, many have already enacted plans to mitigate elements of disinformation such as deepfake and are even demonetizing some accounts.

In response to the conflict, communities on social medias have organized and mobilized to send donations in cryptocurrency donations and organize a DAO to support Ukraine.

Written by: Chloé Cappelier and Pauline Balan

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Linnea Axelsson Lindgren

Linnea Axelsson Lindgren

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Head of Communications at Another Tomorrow, Stockholm. Loves dogs.