Welcome back to the 848 Update! This week the world of social media has been turned on its head, some well recognised software has been given its marching orders and we have some unsettling news about electronic household items… 

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It’s long been an integral part of viewing media online, but Adobe Flash could soon be a thing of the past as Google Ads have announced they will cease to host any Flash adverts. Though the announcement comes almost a full year before this will be implemented in January 2017, this gives advertisers plenty of time to move away from the less secure format that often crashes and slows down loading times.

In case you’re wondering, the image above wasn’t artificially created for this blog post and Flash really did crash on us while researching this story. What a great example of why we’re already looking forward to next January!

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We’ve seen some big changes from well loved social media platforms this week, though some have gone down far better than others. There was rejoice as Instagram finally rolled out the long-awaited ability to switch between accounts, making it far easier to manage business or blog profiles alongside personal accounts on the same device. Just make sure you’re using the right profile before posting a picture of your lunch!

Meanwhile Twitter is undergoing some big changes. As well as announcing the algorithmic timeline we discussed earlier in the week, new efforts are being made to reduce harassment on the site. The new Trust and Safety Council will be headed up by prominent Twitter users of diverse backgrounds and will work towards balancing the concept of ‘free speech’ with reducing ‘trolling’ and abuse. Initial responses have been very mixed but a potentially safer environment should surely be something to look forward to?

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(photo credit Alan Levine via Flickr)

Okay, perhaps that’s a slight exaggeration, but recent announcements from US intelligence services suggest that the Internet of Things could prove to be an essential tool for gathering information. Microphones and motion sensors found in toys, voice-recognition software and smart TVs might contain vital data that can be accessed and used like any other online device. This is certainly one of those news stories we’re not sure whether to be impressed or concerned by!

Are you celebrating at the prospect of no more Flash? Or maybe you’re too busy covering up every webcam in your home? We’d love to hear your thoughts!