‘Tis the season for some reflection and this week’s Social Media in the News is taking a quick glance back at some of the headlines featured in our blog in 2020. 

This feature initially started as a way to highlight the ways social media was making news in “traditional” media. Through the course of COVID-19, things shifted a little bit as we focused a lot on new features that were quickly rolling out across multiple platforms. 

Here’s a look back: 

Remember the #BroomChallenge?

Our first Social Media in the News launched on Feb. 17 as the “Broom Challenge” was taking over everyone’s feeds. Balancing brooms across the country (and other parts of the world) even made headlines in the USA Today

Local meteorologist Andrew Freiden was having none of that though and set us all straight: 

Dangerous Challenges Go Viral

The Broom Challenge was certainly harmless, but early in 2020, several dangerous challenges on social media made their way to the news. One of those morphed from a “tripping challenge” to the “Skull Breaker Challenge.” 

Let’s hope we don’t see those things again in 2021. 

“Stories” Are Everywhere

While “Fleets” are new to everyone right now, we actually mentioned them in March as the USA Today reported that Twitter was testing out this feature. It was also in that same post on March 16 that “Stories” were coming to LinkedIn. 

We’ll be talking much more about “stories” in a Year in Review blog post soon!

The Early Days of COVID-19

By the end of March, YouTube was dropping the quality of video to allow for more bandwidth, Google was dropping the ability to drop reviews, and Facebook was adjusting staffing levels leading to long delays on ads. 

We also learned quickly to not use the bathroom while on Zoom calls …

A Focus on Diversity 

During protests in late spring and through the summer, there was a major focus on diversity on social media. This included things such as LinkedIn adding free courses in diversity and inclusion. Artists and millions of others on social media joined “Blackout Tuesday,” and several other companies boycotted placing ads to bring attention to hate speech and misinformation running rampant. 

> Related: 10 Diverse Stock Image Sites to Make Your Content More Inclusive

#RIP … but Not Really

One strange trend that made headlines this summer was the #RIP tag with someone famous … who wasn’t really dead. One of those was popular talk show host Ellen Degeneres.

That lead to some hilarious moments of people posting photos of other actors who were not Ellen (but also still very much alive). 


What About TikTok?

There were questions throughout the second half of the year on whether or not TikTok would be accessible at the end of 2020. Well it is, for now. You can catch a recap HERE of the ups and downs and questions that were making headlines about TikTok’s future since late summer.

Stock of the Year

In several Social Media in the News posts, we mentioned how well Pinterest stock was doing. While many social media companies saw increases in 2020, nothing has come close to Pinterest’s growth. As of mid-December, it had gained 274.4% and had a closing price of nearly $70. 

“Unlike other platforms who primarily connect people with each other, many of the things people seek Pinterest for – namely ideas and inspiration – are actually products themselves,” Choice Equities Capital Management says

Pinterest is also looking ahead and predicting the trends for 2021: 

Speaking of 2021 

In November, Morgan Stanley said that several platforms could see major growth in advertising next year. Many tech giants have grown about 11 percent this year — they could grow as much as 20% in 2021. 

And we’ll be right here tracking that growth and brining you the latest headlines a couple of times a month in Social Media in the News! Thanks so much for reading throughout the year! 

Want to find out even more about what’s been happening across social media? Catch up on all of our Social Media in the News 2020 headlines HERE.


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