The War on Info is Lost, and Snap Shrinks: Do Not Read Until Monday
Hopefully you are far away from the office on a Summer Friday and Do Not Read Until Monday!
Dreaming of a day I don’t have to see Alex Jones’ face
So after several weeks of user petitioning, and platforms hemming and hawing (and I don’t use that phrase lightly, I hate it), Alex Jones finally lost the InfoWars and was banished to relative obscurity by Facebook and YouTube.
Of course, this followed actions by Apple, Spotify, and more, feeding into – you guessed it! – more conspiracy claims by the Jones and his followers. …And a Snapchat filter. Some would say the worst part of it is the potential to undermine our core rights of free speech as Americans. And they do have a point. I would contend, though, that the worst part might be that I have to see pictures of that guy’s face at least daily. Sometimes he’s even depicted shirtless – SHIRTLESS – such as when he was even banned from a porn site.
One holdout on banning InfoWars had been Twitter, though later breaking reports suggest they may be reining the entity in as well.
Snapchat daily users contract by 3 million
The once-untouchable cultural phenomenon and social (ahem, “camera”) app lost about 3 million daily active users in Q2, signaling trouble for the company’s future. As Facebook, mostly via Instagram, assails the app by aping its core features, Snap has doubled down on its deeply engaged user base. As this erodes, so does its hope of monetizing those users, and getting advertisers excited about the platform.
It’s not a nail in the coffin by any means – Twitter suffered similar setbacks, but has lately been on an upswing – but Snap definitely needs to find a money-making venture Facebook can’t immediately swipe from them.
Samsung announced a bunch of things
Samsung had a big event this week called Unpacked where it announced a number of product updates. The Galaxy Note 9, a big seller in the Android world, could easily be considered the largest, unless you count that Fortnite for Android will be exlusive to Samsung in its initial launch.
A bit more dubious was the announcement of the Galaxy Home, another entry in the crowded home speaker market. The Home features Samsung’s virtual assistant Bixby, admittedly a pretty distant contender in that market. The speaker does look kinda cool though.
It also updated and re-christened its smart watches to the Galaxy branding.
This week in Facebook trying not to look like total jerks:
- Created ‘mentorships’ within Groups.
- Awarded some security grants.
- Requiring address verification for some larger pages.
- It’s also hoping to boost utility for the smaller ones.
Odds + The End
- Oh, Facebook might also be trying to get your banking data though. Hey, they’re Facebook!
- RIP Tribune Media-Sinclair Merger.
- AI can beat you at finding Waldo.
- Siri’s getting better at recognizing local place names.
- Apple isn’t listening to your calls.
- Pandora is ready to recommend podcasts.
- Tinder might bring in $800 million this year, and I can’t even get a text back.
- Facebook’s a major contender in … the browser market?
- August 10, 2018