Facebook Photo Review, Meta Descriptions, & Secure PHP

Welcome back, you know what time it is, time for our mid-week marketing recap! Today we are bringing you three of the hottest new digital trends including Facebook's new facial recognition feature, increased meta length, and more secure PHP. Enough of the small talk, let's dive in and check out these amazing features!

facebook photo review

Say So Long To Unflattering Angles, and Photos on Facebook

So it’s Christmas time and you’re sitting around with family when one of your friends sends over a awful photo of you that someone else has posted. Talk about embarrassing, right? Well Facebook has heard your cry for help and is ready to help you cut down on life’s embarrassing moments.

With Facebook’s latest feature, they have you in mind and want to make sure that you know and control the photos of you  that are uploaded, even if they do not tag you. So ladies and gentlemen, let me introduce you to “Photo Review.”

Facebook’s latest feature utilizes the finest in facial recognition technology to alert you when someone uploads a photo that appears to be you. This new feature should help give you confidence that there aren’t random unapproved photos of you floating around Facebook. Not only will it help you keep those photos taken from unflattering angles or a photo from your college days off the web, this new feature will also help take a stab at putting an end to impersonation on the social network.

In case you're in somebody's profile photograph which is public, you'll generally be told. For other photos, you'll receive a notification just in case you're in the direct audience for that photograph in order to secure the uploader's protection and not alarm you about photographs you're not allowed to see. A Photo Review segment of the profile will monitor all your untagged pictures that Facebook believes could be you.

This new photo review function is currently rolling out to users and you should see the option to review these photos on your profile very soon. This new feature is a step in the right direction, with Facebook fostering an online environment in which users will feel safe that they have control over what others do and do not see online.

meta description

More Characters in the World

The world is full of characters, and it just got a bit more full! This month Google has extended the meta character limit length to 320. Brevity has been the drum beat for awhile, but with this increase we’re seeing a change. Google’s reasoning is so that the snippets are more descriptive. Now, you may think you need to rush into your website and make your snippet longer, but that might not be the best course of action. If Google wants more information, they can easily pull that content from the site. If that happens, you can review the snippet and take action if necessary.

If you’re building a new site, definitely take this new character limit into account. The average count that’s been tracked is around 230 characters. Think about that if you do adjust your meta count; just because you’ve been given 320 characters, it doesn't mean you need to fill that space in fully. As always be sure you are sharing quality, relevant content that best describes your page within the aforementioned parameters.

Always be mindful of your key goals and keywords, keeping all of it in mind when forming your title and meta data. While we’re on the subject of titles, Google allows for 50-60 characters and according to Moz, if you follow this at least 90% of your titles will show up correctly. So, there you have it, you now have around 375 characters to show to the world. With great power comes great character length and optimization. Contact us if you’d like to be better at what you do out here in cyberspace. The world is watching.

The Takeaway: Optimize your titles & metas if necessary and follow best practices, Yoast is awesome at helping you stay in line.

more secure php

A More Secure PHP

PHP is utilized by various developers and is a popular server-side web development language. PHP has not been updated since December 2015. For this reason, web developers are welcoming the November 30, 2017 PHP 7.2 release. This new version improves the programming language’s support of cryptography and password hashing algorithms.

The PHP 7.2 release includes multiple security improvements. These improvements includes updates to the Argon2 algorithm, the libsodium cryptography library, SSL/TLS, and Mcrypt cryptography. The Argon2 algorithm has been designed for the highest memory filling rate and has been added to the PHP core. Argon2 password hashing has beat out other password hashing algorithms in security and cost-effectiveness. The libsodium cryptography library is now a core extension and offers high-speed elliptic cryptography. Lastly, the Mcrypt cryptography library extension has been removed. Mcrypt was traded off for Libmcrypt because Mcrypt is abandonware and was inhibiting the growth of the language. Libsodium is made of carefully selected algorithms implemented by security experts to avoid side-channel vulnerabilities.

The PHP 7.2 release also includes new and enhanced programming capabilities. The issue of inaccessible properties has been resolved by the conversion of numeric keys in object/array casts in the Zend Engine, which powers PHP 7. Now the keys of arrays or object hash tables are converted as appropriate. Another fix implemented is object texthints which uses object as a parameter type and as a return type. This solves the problem of a developer not being able to declare a function that needs to be passed to an object as a parameter or declare a function should return an object. Another update is HashContext as Object which causes the hash extension to use an object extension for hash contexts instead of using resources. The last update is a new warning has been added. The warning is activated when the count () function with a parameter that is a scalar, null, or an object that does not implement the Countable interface.

As you can see there are many great updates in the PHP 7.2 release that will make it faster and more secure. This release offers double the performance of previous PHP iterations. PHP 7.2 includes new features and better security.