Here’s your Last Week in Digital Media.
- Byte, the successor to Vine, shared details of their creator monetization program (launching April 15). It’s an interesting, if complicated take, on compensation where creators will be placed into Viewership Brackets each month and rewarded based on a shared pool of money.
- Google has joined Facebook (and SXSW), canceling its annual developer conference Google I/O. Both F8 and Google I/O typically see a lot of new product announcements, so it will be interesting to see how these are shared over the coming months. Separately, if you want an easy tracker of industry events that have been canceled, try this site.
- twitter is experimenting in Brazil with their own version of stories called “fleets”. Fleets are tweets that disappear after 24 hours. You can view a video of the twitter fleets experience here.
- in other twitter news, CEO Jack Dorsey, who last week was under threat of being replaced (and still is), has backed away from plans to move to Africa.
- reverse engineer Jane Wong has spotted that Spotify is working on a “Hey Spotify” capability within the core app.
- Google will move to mobile-first indexing by default as of September 2020. So make sure you check with clients and publishers that they have a great mobile-first experience (and consider a mobile SEO audit).
- Apple has updated its AppStore guidelines and opened the door to push notifications being used for marketing purposes (including possible ads). s4.5.4 of the updated terms details the requirements including that users must have opted-in.
STREAMING (VIDEO and AUDIO)
- AT&T’s new connected TV service, that will eventually replace DirectTV and AT&T U-Verse although it’s not packaged as a cord-cutting offering, requiring a 12-month agreement to get get it for US$49.99.
- a little under a month away from launch, mobile video platform Quibi has raised US$750MM in a second capital raising. There will be 50 shows on Quibi at launch with plans for 175 in the first year.
- it’s reported that Roku is in exploratory conversations for original content for the Roku Channel. If true, it would be a big change for Roku although as a company it potentially sits on as much audience content viewing intelligence data as Netflix giving it an edge in identifying the right programming.
- Bytedance has launched a test of their music service in India (there’s also reports of a test in Indonesia). Bytedance’s music service is called Resso, and is described as a social streaming app, and includes both a free and premium tier. This is not the only product expansion being tested by Bytedance, with the company also experimenting with financial services and games (paywall)
- ViacomCBS owned Pluto TV is launching an advertising campaign as it looks to grow users of the service.
- Flipboard TV, the ad-free video news service announced back in February, has officially launched. Flipboard TV is exclusive to the Samsung S20, the service costs $2.99 per month (after a free 3-month trial).
- Apple and TikTok both declined to appear before a March congressional hearing specifically about their ties to China. This is the 2nd time they have declined the request.
- two US Senators are proposing a new regulation called the “Kids Internet Design and Safety (KIDS) Act”. The full KIDS Act bill (PDF link) focuses on push alerts, autoplay content, in-app rewards, content recommendations, to even influencer content and unboxing videos. If enacted, the KIDS Act would be overseen by the FTC.
PRIVACY, TRUST, and SAFETY
- in a US appeals court decision, it was ruled that the First Amendment does not apply to YouTube. This should not come as a surprise, but it’s an important decision with broad ramifications for brand safety as it underscores that platforms can exercise editorial control and act responsibly by either removing or demonetizing content on their platforms. It’s worth reading the ruling (PDF link).
- it’s reported that Facebook and its partners in Libra are weighing a change in their approach to the cryptocurrency. Mainly driven by ongoing issues with regulators who have consistently expressed concern about the plans.
- App and service DoNotPay has launched a $3 a month data protection offering, that offers to help get your data deleted from data brokers and data scraping sites.
- Five countries (US, Canada, UK, Australia, and New Zealand) have released 11 voluntary principles to keep children safe online and protect them from harm (PDF link). Representatives from the major platforms are reported to have been involved in the development of the principles.
Have a great week.