May 13, 2019


How to adapt to new subscription messages policy

Facebook recently made some critical changes to its Messenger policy for broadcasting messages.

We discussed what it means, how will it change bot marketing and some workarounds you can employ here.

Let’s do a quick recap and add a few clarifications and insights from Rutger Thole, who shared everything over on this FB post:

  • When someone subscribes to your Messenger, you can send broadcasts to them including promotional messages, for a window of 24 hours.
  • After 24 hours, you can re-engage with them and send 1 free promotional message.
  • If they engage with it, the 24-hour window resets.
  • If they don’t, you will not be allowed to send any further messages.
  • Any engagement with these messages will also reset after the 24-hour window.

If they don’t engage, you can try to re-engage with your subscribers via one of the eligible messenger conversation entry points. These entry points include:

  • Person sends a message to a business.
  • Person starts a conversation with the business via a call-to-action button within a Messenger conversation, such as a share attribution.
  • Person starts a conversation with a business via a plugin, such as the Send to Messenger plugin, checkbox plugin, etc.
  • Person starts a conversation with a business via an ad with an app_destination set to MESSENGER.
  • Business uses the Customer Matching API to match an existing customer via phone number and name to a person on Messenger. The bot must have the pages_messaging_phone_number permission to begin a conversation in this way.

You can continue to broadcast messages to these subscribers if:

  • Your FB page is approved for Subscription Messaging.
  • The message fits one of the available message tags.

However, each message tag can only be used for specific use cases. These use cases are listed under ‘Allowed Use Cases’ on the FB developer pages.

Here are some of the allowed use cases for non_promotional_tag.

News: Integrations where the primary purpose is to inform people about recent or important events, or provide information in categories such as sports, finance, business, real estate, weather, traffic, politics, government, religion, celebrities, and entertainment.

Productivity: Integrations where the primary purpose is to enable people to manage their personal productivity with tasks, such as managing calendar events, receiving reminders, and paying bills.

Personal trackers: Integrations that enable people to receive and monitor information about themselves in categories such as fitness, health, wellness, and finance.

Got any further questions or need more clarification on any of the points above? Hit Rutger up on his post above.


Media websites hitting their own source of income

Gut Doctor “I beg Americans to throw out this vegetable now.”

This is the headline of a native ad that is spreading around the web. This ad unsurprisingly leads to an advertorial, which then leads on to an offer page.

These kinds of ads are spread across the whole internet through networks like Taboola, Outbrain, RevContent, etc. These networks allow websites to make revenue by monetizing their content.

However, not everybody is happy to see these sorts of ads. In fact, Anmol Raizada shared a bunch of articles talking about these chumboxes, the name for the weird clickbaity news “recommendations” hanging under blog posts and news stories across the web.

Like this one, which discusses the ad we mentioned above (Gut doctor). Ironically, if you scroll down, you’ll find similar ads on their webpage sponsored by RevContent.

The Vox decided to dig a little deeper into this, again starting from the Gut Doctor ad.

John Mahoney coined these different types of chumboxes: Skin thing, Old Person’s Face, Miracle cure thing, Extreme Weight Loss and others.

And they even identified the different strategy behind them:

  • Search links.
  • Affiliate marketing.
  • Slideshow links.
  • A real ad.

Moreover, they even found out that the person behind the gut doctor is Dr. Pedre.

He’s so famous that Fox Sports Radio host Jason Smith even asked about him and the infamous vegetable that Americans should throw away on Twitter.

The final discovery was that the association founded by the doctor sold two products that provide relief from digestive issues and cure depression: Synbiotic 365 and ActivMotion.

Does your network have these offers? ‘Cause if everybody is aware of this gut doctor ad, it’s probably scaling heavy…

Bear in mind that we aren’t suggesting that you promote this offer, but rather illustrating how publishers are becoming more and more aware of the clickbaity ads often used by affiliates to push some offers.

They aren’t just growing in awareness either. They’re actually willing to denounce it, even if it hits their revenue.

If you want to have a look at the many posts shared over the years that speak out against these fake recommendations, head to this post shared in the Purple Knowledge Group.


Where on Earth is the Info & Ads section? FB sues analytics firm

If you’re wondering where the hell the Info & Ads section has gone, we have the answer! In the meantime, FB sues a South Korean firm.

Everybody wondering where the Info & Ads section has gone: Here it is!

One of the most frequently asked questions on FB groups this weekend has been: Where has the Info & Ads section gone?

If the weekend passed by without you getting the answers you so desire, here we are!

We speculated about an upcoming update behind this change on Friday, and it turns out we were right! The Info & Ads section has been moved to the Transparency section.

Head over to the Page you are interested in and we’ll walk you through it. From desktop, scroll down and you’ll see the Page Transparency box on the right.

Click on “See More”, and from there you can find Page info and history, and the ads run by that page. Though, FB will now redirect you to the Ad Library to explore the Page’s ads.

From mobile, you’ll find the Transparency box just by scrolling down a bit.

You can head here to the post shared by Depesh Mandalia to get a better understanding of it all.

Analytics firm Rankwave gets sued by FB

How many times have we seen FB on the wrong end of a lawsuit due to misusing data? You’ve lost count, right?

This time, the shoe is on the other foot.

In fact, on May 10, FB revealed it has filed a lawsuit against a South Korean analytics firm, Rankwave.

“Rankwave failed to cooperate with our efforts to verify their compliance with our policies, which we require of all developers using our platform.”

What happened?

Facebook is accusing Rankwave of using at least 30 different apps to “track and analyse” comments and likes on Facebook pages.

Moreover, the South Korean firm had a consumer app that, after gaining users’ consent, would snaffle data about location check-ins and the popularity of users’ posts.

Using the popularity data, the app would then calculate a social media “influencer score”.

This whole scenario might sound familiar to you, and that’s because Cambridge Analytica’s practices were fairly similar. They just used personality quiz apps to tempt users into providing data about themselves and their friends.

Strangely, TechCrunch found that Rankwave still offers an Android app that asks users to login with Facebook so it can calculate the popularity of your posts and give them a “Social Influencer Score”.

It’s still unclear how many users have been affected, but what is clear is that FB is seeking $9.8M in fines plus additional monetary damages and other fees from Rankwave.

Finally, they also want an injunction to restrain Rankwave from accessing the Facebook platform, and this injunction would also require Rankwave to delete all the Facebook data they have collected.

You can find a copy of the lawsuit files here.

On the bright side, at least for the moment, there’s no evidence of Rankwave transferring the data to other third parties as Cambridge Analytica did.

We’ll report all future developments on the case here, as always!


Amazon hit by ‘extensive’ fraud

E-comm stalwart Amazon recently confirmed that it was hit by an extensive fraud attack, which allowed unidentified hackers to draw off funds from its merchant accounts over a period of six months.

The hack took place between May 2018 and October 2018 and has only now been made public.

During this period, hundreds of Amazon seller accounts and their bank accounts were hacked. They did this by just changing details of accounts on the Seller Central platform to their own at Barclays Plc and Prepay Technologies Ltd.

Around $1B of loans were issued by Amazon to its merchants in 2018, a chunk of which is now bloating these hackers’ bank accounts. The exact figures are yet to be confirmed by Amazon.

Well, it clearly shows how even the largest online retail platform can be misused, and how difficult it is for Amazon to find the perpetrators.


Device bans and hacks

Snapchat has been growing steadily over the last few years. Its user base is thriving and attracting more advertisers than ever before.

So what does a platform do when it starts growing in popularity?

It starts enforcing stricter rules and policies.

Snapchat is following suit here and has been banning several users with jailbroken iOS devices, with iOS 12 and above devices being the main target.

This isn’t the first time it has banned devices with jailbroken iOS, but the previous bans were only temporary. They were more like a warning, and only applied if you accessed the platform from a third-party app or used a modified version of the official app.

Also, this is a device ban rather than a user ban. So, if you were banned and thought creating a new account would solve your problems, you’d be wrong. Any new accounts created with the same device would automatically attract a ban.

Apparently, Snapchat keeps a record of everything you do within the app. It knows if a user installs any tweak, even if that tweak isn’t related to Snapchat.

If you are Snap enthusiast using a jailbroken iOS device, there is apparently a way to avoid these bans. Bear in mind that we haven’t tried this ourselves though, and we aren’t recommending it.

For those still curious, as described here, you can try to install Unsub tweak from Nepta. This disables the Substitute tweak injection for the Snapchat app.

If you’re you’re already banned, you will have to wait for about a day for the temporary ban to expire to access the service. Once your account is reinstated, you can use the same trick as above to avoid getting banned again.

Although, a better option would be to simply avoid using Snapchat on your jailbroken device.


WordPress 5.2 and new updates

WordPress announced the release of its latest version 5.2, which is now availablefor download and includes several new features and security updates such as website health check features, PHP error protection, new dashboard icons and more.

Site health check: Two new pages to debug common configuration issues and a place for developers to add “debugging” information for website managers.

PHP error protection: Built for administrators, it lets site owners safely fix and manage fatal errors without developer resources. It includes a better handling of ‘white screen of death’ and a method for entering recovery mode, which pauses error-causing plugins or themes

Look & feel: Improved contextual awareness and keyboard navigation for those using screen readers or assistive technologies.

13 new dashboard icons: New BuddyPress icons, an Instagram icon and automatic checks to determine if a website’s version of PHP is compatible with these installed plugins.

Developer updates: New theme page template, a conditional function and two CSS classes which will make it easier to design and customize Privacy Policy pages. Body hook features that allow themes to support code added at the beginning of a body element, and new tools to write modern JavaScript.

PS: If you are running an old version of PHP (5.6.20 or earlier), you will first need to update your PHP before installing the new 5.2 version of WordPress.

If you are a WordPress user, these additional security measures sound like a great update. Upgrade your website and avoid those fatal errors that can bring your entire ecommerce website down, and the countless other smaller issues that can render your website useless.


Cool tech, (funny) business, lifestyle and all the other things affiliates like to chat about while sipping cocktails by the pool.

Buy a house on Amazon

We all know that you can buy pretty much anything on Amazon.

You want new pillows? No problem. How about some fake cash? There within a day.

But did you know that you can even buy a house?

Yes! You can order an entire guest house on Amazon. A tiny, 193 square feet house that you can put together in about 8 hours.

You can move your entire life into this house, convert it into a guest house or studio, or maybe even use it as a headquarters to launch your killer campaigns.

There’s only one downside: It doesn’t include any amenities like air conditioning or electricity.

Nor WI-FI. You have to do that.

So, if you were looking for a place to escape from everybody and isolate yourself, Amazon’s got your back.

You’ll have to wait for re-stock first though, because the product has already sold out!

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