Is Facebook down? Yes, Facebook is down in India

Is Facebook down? Yes, Facebook and Instagram are currently unavailable for many users or is restricted to a limited extent. The reports of disturbances have accumulated since about 3 pm in India.

Either the pages are not reachable, users cannot log in or error messages appear during the posting. On Facebook, it says: "There was a problem updating your status, please try again in a few minutes." For other users there is an indication that there is maintenance on the database.

Rainbow Reaction Facebook images

To celebrate Pride Month, the month of activities and events against gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) discrimination, Facebook has made some special features. Among these, the most obvious is a rainbow flag that you can use to react to the various post like you normally do with smilies, hearts or the classic thumbs up.

The rainbow flag, chosen because it is the symbol of the LGBTQ community is however not immediately available to users. You can activate it if you "like" the LGBTQ Facebook page, the official Facebook page that supports the LGBTQ community. That done, it will be seen among other reactions in the drop down menu below each post.

What is Pride Month

Pride Month is the name by which it is known the set of events that take place during the month of June to support the LGBTQ community. The month of June was chosen from the history of the LGBTQ movement in the United States on June 28, 1969, in New York after violent protests broke out after the police raid on a gay bar, the Stonewall Inn, which is considered the birth of the LGBTQ liberation movement in the United States.

The other Facebook initiatives and those of Google

In addition to the rainbow reaction, Facebook introduced other functions for the Pride Month with a frame for your image profile similar to that introduced to celebrate the legalization of gay marriage in the United States and rainbow filter in Messenger and Instagram.

Even Google has modified some of its services for the Pride Month. All research related search queries are presented with a rainbow ribbon and routes of gay pride around the world are shown on Google Maps with a rainbow online, instead of blue.

The age-old question is whether Facebook users are willing to pay for news of major newspapers that every day they read on the platform for free? For now, there is an answer, but perhaps we will discover later this year if the plans of the social network will be successful.

According to the Wall Street Journal, the Menlo Park engineers are in fact working on a feature that will allow you to pay for news (re) published on the platform from major newspapers. The system will not guarantee a subscription to the whole publication, but only to the pieces available on Facebook as Instant Articles.

The large publishing groups and social networks have not yet agreed on the terms of service. Negotiations are ongoing. What we know for now is that Facebook wants to implement a share of monthly free news, after which the user will be asked to proceed with the subscription.

The ongoing discussions are also on payment methods and rates. One possibility being considered is that Facebook provides all proceeds to the publishers, but manages payment information independently. Any percentage, in short, in exchange for fresh data at a very high added value (such as the number of the credit card), that the social network has always struggled to associate to its users.

We are working with our partners to understand their business models and explore ways that enable them to channel more value from Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg told the WSJ. We are taking the time it takes to thoroughly understand their needs and their goals.

Large groups had pushed for the implementation of a payment solution even before the launch of Instant Articles, but Facebook had objected to avoid placing too many obstacles between the user clicks and content to read. The Instant Articles, active since 2015 are versions of the articles that are lighter and optimized for smartphones, hosted by the platform and not on the website of the newspaper. You can only access Facebook from the app, and only for specific content, selected in advance by publishers.

According to industry experts, in-app payments for news could help especially the smaller and regional publications that are still struggling to define a digital strategy for success. For Facebook, it would also be a way to compete with Google AMP and Apple News. One of the main criticisms of Facebook's Instant Article is that the amount of advertising that can be inserted in the optimized versions of the articles is not sufficient to ensure adequate revenue.

Recently, the social network has relaxed the terms of service and allowed publishers to insert into Instant Article a registration form to the newsletter, but did not change any settings on the number and type of ads.