Social media updates: December 2023

Your monthly roundup of the social media updates and news from the past month.
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Table of Contents

December, much like the year 2023, has been full of changes.

From Meta’s increasingly aggressive push towards artificial intelligence (AI) to a change in TikTok’s policy on influencers making money, there is a lot to absorb as you get some well-earned rest before diving into 2024.

So Vamp is here to give you all the help you need.

We’ve compiled the most important changes announced by social media companies this month, so whether you’re a brand, influencer or marketer, get comfortable and ready yourself with everything you need to know for 2024.

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Meta (Instagram, Facebook and WhatsApp)


October marked a game-changing month for Meta users after a lavish set of upgrades were announced, from updated fonts to new photo filters.

This month, Mark Zuckerberg’s social media empire has gone one step further by announcing 20 new AI features.

One of those is increased access to the tool Imagine, which was previously available in chats but will now be available in the US at

The tool is simple, you type in a prompt and AI will generate an image for you.

Brands with savvy social media teams may wish to start experimenting immediately to get ahead, as this will almost certainly be a leading player in the ever-evolving game of AI generation.

There’s also prime ground for using humor here in good taste, too. A number posts on X have raised smiles this year where the creator shows followers the results of their prompts, ranging from beautiful to absurd.

And for influencers, it’s never a bad idea to start developing a skill that will become increasingly in demand.

While it is currently being rolled out in the US, it’s likely UK users won’t be left waiting too long.

Are you looking to learn more about launching a social media campaign? Our guide shows you how to plan them.

View Once Voice Messages

Since 2021, WhatsApp users have been able to send photos and videos that disappear once opened in a move that mirrored Snapchat’s iconic success story.

But the ability to send voice messages that vanish once listened to has been absent: until now.

Its primary purpose is to increase privacy, with examples ranging from reading credit card details to providing an address.

So how can this help you if you’re a brand or influencer?

Well, 2023 was a year in which mass communication through WhatsApp took a major step forward.

News powerhouse The Mail launched its own WhatsApp channel in September, with fellow national The Mirror doing the same the following month.

Brands and influencers could therefore find success in taking this approach too, and may find audiences are more responsive to their content via WhatsApp than traditional outlets.

What disappearing voice notes could enable is the ability to direct WhatsApp recipients elsewhere via previews. Suppose you share your thoughts for the day. Didn’t catch that? You’ll find the whole piece on my website, Instagram or YouTube channel.

For influencers and brands navigating smaller groups, you will also be in a position to offer an increased layer of privacy.

Suppose a follower gets in touch via a private WhatsApp, thinks your video is incredible and wants you to send them your starter pack. Well, a little assurance that their address won’t be stored on this app could go a long way to building a trusting, long-term relationship.

Are you a small business eager to make 2024 the year you really take off? If so, you can see our complete social media guide for small businesses.

Video Notes

Creators using Instagram can now add a short, looping video as their profile photo in Notes, and of course within the post itself.

Instagram chief, Adam Mosseri, wrote: “New test on Instagram. This week we started testing the ability to post selfie videos in Notes. 

“Soon, people will be able to update their default profile photo in Notes with a short, lopping video. You’ll still be able to share a thought via text to accompany the video. If you start seeing videos in notes, let us know what you think!”

Naturally for content creators this marks an opportunity to boost engagement.

If you’re an influencer at ease with the camera, a particular facial expression in a video, rather than a picture, could be exactly the edge you need.

This also bodes well with increased capacity for recipients to respond, including audio, photo and video.

So whether you’re a brand specialising in short-form or an influencer for whom Instagram is your default app, small updates like this are worthy of note.

Pinned WhatsApp messages 

Another new feature appearing on WhatsApp this month is the use of pinned chats.

In the same way your priority tweets and Instagram content can be pinned to your profile, now your most important chats can be placed at the top too.

An X post from WhatsApp on December 12 read: “Introducing pinned messages. Now everyone can stay on top of a chat by keeping the important messages up top.”

Great news for micro-influencers, for example, who are interacting with followers on a bespoke basis.

If they’ve asked you a question while you were in a hurry, simply pin the chat to make sure you don’t forget.

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Creativity Beta 

From December 16, TikTok removed its creator fund, set up in 2020, and replaced it with the creativity program beta.

The company claims this will create more opportunities for creators to monetise their content, but only if uploads are over a minute long.

To be eligible for the new program, you need at least 10,000 followers and at least 100,000 views within 30 days on a US-based account.

But TikTok claims the shift may result in creators being paid up to 20 times more than they did under the creator fund.

That may seem confusing following a collective focus on short-form video in the past year, but TikTok insists there’s a good reason for it.

The company recently claimed that users are spending half their time on the app watching content longer than a minute.

Users staying on videos longer means more engagement and essentially more time on the app, which promises to reward users for that engagement with extra cash.

So if you’re an influencer or brand, it would be a highly wise strategy to start honing your TikTok skillset to videos longer than 60 seconds.

And on that note, if you would like to stay ahead of the curve, you can see our guide to competitor analysis here. 

App upgrades for larger devices

An early Christmas present for TikTok creators who prefer editing on larger devices: a range of fresh upgrades.

Although most people use TikTok on their mobiles, there are clear benefits to editing on larger screens, including tablets, and foldable devices.

This includes a clear video feed, which TikTok says is a “more refined video feed that showcases content with enhanced clarity”

There’s also the introduction of streamlined navigation bars, described as “sleek navigation bars at the top and bottom of the screen for easy access to your favourite features and tabs”.

And finally, there is support for landscape or portrait use.

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Live video to space chats

It’s difficult keeping up with Elon Musk these days, but one thing to note from December was the introduction of live video to space chats.

Musk shared on X: “We’re working on adding video to Spaces so that it’ll just be a simple thing where you can turn the video on or off. 

“And then the person who is speaking, the video will switch to them, like a group call or something like that.”


Real-time view and like counts

YouTube is currently testing views and like counters that appear in real-time. While the feature was announced in October, it’s been reported this month that more users are beginning to see this.

As it stands, you can already see views and like counts but they don’t change while you’re watching the content.

But with the update, a slick animation appears to show you just how popular your content is proving to be.

YouTube had said in a post: “And, for new video uploads, we added a new animation that updates view count and like count in real time for the first 24 hours to show how many other users are engaging with what they’re watching.”

Pause video comments

At the beginning of December, YouTube said in a blog post that it was rolling out a comment moderation setting called Pause.

This allows creators to stop new comments appearing while preserving existing ones already published.

The truth is, you’re only human and there are some nefarious people on the internet, so if you’re experimenting with new content and don’t want your followers to see any new ones, this update is a positive one.

It’s also handy when managing comments may simply get overwhelming, without having to turn them off completely.

YouTube said: “Prior to Pause rolling out, if you were looking to prevent new comments from being posted on your content you only had 2 options – to hold comments for review before publishing them or to disable comments from your channels entirely.”

While we’re on the subject, if you would like to see what competitors are saying about your brand, you can see Vamp’s guide to social media listening

10 free subscriptions per month

As of December 12 YouTube began giving eligible creators, with channel memberships enabled, free subscriptions to give subscribers. 

This is currently not available for brand accounts, but influencers can use this to drive awareness of your content and offer personable interaction.

If, for example, you pick one follower for a free subscription to give them exclusive access to behind-the-scenes content, you’ll be establishing a connection that may result in loyalty for years to come.

Creators must have channel memberships enabled and offer membership tier below $5.

Until next time

That’s all until next year. 

It’s been a revolutionary year for technology, and that has been reflected through social media on a grand scale.

Next year promises to be much of the same, but Vamp is here to help you every step of the way.



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