Instagram controls let you share more love, shut out hate

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Going between permanent and fleeting image messages is now seamless on Instagram.
Going between permanent and fleeting image messages is now seamless on Instagram.
Photo: Instagram

In a year highlighted by high-octane social media unkindness, Instagram is adding controls to make the photo sharing site safe for all.

Instagram will soon give its 500 million users a setting to turn off comments on any post, the ability to remove followers from private accounts, and a tool to anonymously report users expressing signs of hurting themselves.

Instagram gains live video and disappearing messages

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Go live with friends in Instagram's new Live Video feature.
Go live with friends in Instagram's new Live Video feature.
Photo: Instagram

Instagram announced two new features Monday that gives users more privacy controls while letting them be spontaneous with only the followers they choose.

Live Video will be added to Instagram Stores to let users connect in the moment with a live story that disappears from the the app after your broadcast. Instagram also is giving users the ability to send photos and videos that disappear from your friends’ inboxes after they have seen them – and you will be alerted when a user sees it or takes a screen shot.

Instagram’s new feature is a ripoff of Snapchat Stories

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Stories is already seeing more users than Snapchat.
Stories is already seeing more users than Snapchat.
Photo: Instagram

Instagram is rolling out a new feature that lets you post more privately and without the kind of permanence that can get you in trouble.

Sound familiar, Snapchat users?

On its blog Tuesday morning, the company introduced Instagram Stories, which lets you share multiple photos and videos in a single slideshow. It can be shared with select followers without showing up on your more public profile. It then disappears 24 hours later.

Snapchat Memories finally let you save snaps for later

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Get ready to discover the new Snapchat.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Meet the sports shooter who leaves heavy gear behind for an iPhone

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Rocco Mediate hangs out in the locker room during the second round of the Constellation Senior Players Championship at the Philadelphia Cricket Club earlier this month.
Rocco Mediate hangs out in the locker room during the second round of the Constellation Senior Players Championship at the Philadelphia Cricket Club earlier this month.
Photo: Brad Mangin/PGA TOUR

Cult of Mac 2.0 bugThe photographers were assembled with all their heavy camera equipment, about to walk 18 holes under the hot Florida sun to cover The Players Championship in Ponte Verde Beach when in strolled their colleague, Brad Mangin.

“Where’s your gear?” Mangin was asked. He pulled out his iPhone 6s to a chorus of groans and curses.

Facebook videos are about to get extremely intelligent

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Facebook is killing your battery.
Automatic tagging is coming to video.
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Facebook is upping its game with video. Soon, Facebook will be able to automatically identify friends in videos and tag them. Better yet, it’ll store this information so when you want to find that moment again, you could find the video by searching for your friend’s name and then jump straight to when they appear in frame.

Posting weed on Instagram could land you in jail

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Only blaze up if you want to pay up.
Photo: Brett Levin/Flickr CC

If you like blazing up every now and then, make sure you don’t post it on Instagram. Since marijuana use is still federally recognized as illegal in the United States, posting a picture with that Mary Jane could mean you wind up with a serious fine or even some significant jail time.

Social media strategist Shannon Self says that an Instagram post with someone smoking marijuana is punishable by a fine of up to $150,000 or 18 months of jail time. That’s especially true in many states that still have laws in place banning marijuana either medically or recreationally.

Yik Yak stomps onto the web

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Because it's worth seeing how much your community loves you from a computer too.
Photo: Yik Yak

The app that has become famous around college campuses is now ready to show itself in a different form: as a desktop website. The creators have been testing a web version of Yik Yak in private beta for a while now, but as of today the site is open for public use.