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Multiple CID Madness: Managing One Client Over Many Accounts

September 24, 2020 No Comments

This blog provided introductory tips for how to effectively manage multiple Google Ads accounts for the same entity, and when to pursue that strategy.

Read more at PPCHero.com
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Five reasons why SEO should be prioritized over paid media campaigns

September 5, 2020 No Comments

30-second summary:

  • Most marketers combine SEO and paid media campaigns, but the marketing budget between the two should not necessarily be split down the middle.
  • Paid media campaigns, which include PPC, social, and influencer campaigns, are a one-and-done expense, meaning the investment doesn’t build on itself.
  • SEO can take weeks or months to show results, but after the effort, it’s cost-effective and sustainable.
  • All in all, SEO should be prioritized if you’re focused on the longevity of your company’s marketing scheme.
  • Elevation Marketing’s Vice President of Strategy and Marketing Services explains why SEO gives more bang for your buck.

US digital ad spending was expected to grow 19% to $ 129.34 billion by 2020, finally surpassing traditional advertising methods. According to eMarketer, this figure accounts for 54.2% of total ad spending in the country — and this isn’t a fluke. Digital marketing is effective, but there are multiple routes marketers can take. So, how do you know which?

SEO and paid media campaigns are two of the most common digital marketing strategies, and they’re often implemented together as a one-two punch. SEO is a more long-term play in which marketers will work to enhance a website’s SERP rankings, and the latter includes anything from paid social media ads to PPC campaigns. While paid media can get you thousands of impressions,  it may not always be worth the largest chunk of a marketing budget, especially if you’re thinking about the bigger picture.

The truth is that most online experiences (about 68% according to research) begin with a search engine, and that’s where SEO shines, despite the fact that 25% of marketers admitted to having a less than average understanding of organic traffic. A great SEO strategy won’t see immediate returns like PPC campaigns might, but it provides an effective strategy that is far more scalable and sustainable. 

For this reason, SEO should take priority overpaid media, especially when your marketing budget is tight, but ultimately both types of digital marketing strategies work best when used hand-in-hand.

1. SEO is cost-effective

The ROI of an SEO campaign is a bit harder to calculate than that of a paid campaign. If you’re paying for links or ad clicks or paying an influencer to create a sponsored post, you can easily see the real-time profits. SEO is a little bit different because it can take months to reap the benefits. Nonetheless, it’s still more cost-effective in the long run because once a comprehensive SEO strategy is correctly implemented, it’s set and tends to snowball. You only need to invest in maintenance and updates, rather than investing every single time you run a paid campaign. 

When it comes to search engines, SEO generally has a smaller CPA (cost per acquisition) than PPC. That’s not to say that SEO doesn’t require an initial investment. A great strategy requires a sharp, well-versed professional — which does come at a premium. Google also uses more than 200 different factors to rank websites and some of these factors are constantly evolving, so a long-term investment is a must to keep up with the ever-changing SEO landscape, it just doesn’t usually cost as much as consistently running paid advertising campaigns throughout the entirety of your company’s lifespan.

There are also multiple resources on the web that allow you to learn the basics of SEO on your own. This technical SEO checklist gives step-by-step instructions on how to perform on-page checks that will boost your search engine rankings. This is perfect for those who are just starting out and want to get some base-level SEO added to their site. 

2. SEO has longevity

You might get great results for things like paid search and digital display media, but the second the campaign ends, that success is over. For example, you can bid for a spot on the first page of Google (which can be very expensive depending on the keyword), but that disappears the second you stop paying for it. At the end of the day, paid media is artificially inflated growth.

There is some truth to the old adage that all good things take time, and SEO is a prime example. With a great strategy, you should see solid results by six months, and even more solid results by a year, but these results don’t just disappear the second you decide to divest and reallocate your marketing budget to something else. Once your website’s SEO is established, it’s established (i.e. when you’re in, you’re in). The rest is maintenance, like minding Google’s core updates and creating regular content, or it will trickle to a stopover time. Think of SEO as building a foundation for a house and paid media campaigns as furnishing the room.

3. SEO is sustainable

Paid media’s longevity problem makes it difficult for startups and smaller, newer businesses to maintain long term. While most brands invest a solid amount in paid campaigns from the beginning, it’s not exactly a sustainable strategy. Think of it this way: the average social media influencer charges between $ 75 to $ 3,000 per sponsored post — and it can go way beyond that. That’s just for one post that will get buried in a feed, whereas a business could invest the same amount in SEO content, and see the returns for months on end.

In short, SEO is a sustainable way to elevate your online presence and raise brand awareness. Your ROI from SEO will continue to climb long after your paid media efforts have peaked. Even organic social media marketing doesn’t perform the same way. For example, pages with more than 500,000 likes on Facebook have seen a dramatic decrease in reach, possibly to encourage companies to increase their ad spend.

4. Users prefer organic links

Flatly put, people prefer and trust organic links over paid ads. In fact, organic results can get 15 times the CTR of paid search results if you rank well on a high search volume keyword, and that’s because people just don’t trust advertisements. Consumers want results because they’re relevant, not because someone paid to be there.

A survey done by MarketingSherpa showed that 70% of the links users click on are organic, while only 25% are paid. This emphasizes the importance of having your site rank organically as users are far more likely to visit your site via an organic link.

Stat on organic vs paid media campaigns performance

Of course, backlinking is also a crucial part of any SEO strategy. Users may overwhelmingly favor organic content, but there’s a fair chance they won’t see it unless you’ve got a solid link building strategy that includes placements from trustworthy, high-quality, third party websites. Studies have shown that 91% of all pages don’t get organic traffic from Google, largely because they don’t have any backlinks. More than half of all website pages don’t even have one backlink when the more backlinks a page has, the higher it ranks on Google’s SERPs.

5. SEO is scalable

SEO is fully scalable, meaning you can adjust your campaigns as your company grows. In fact, many business owners first dive into the world of SEO by reading up and implementing their own basic strategy before they have the funds to bring in the professionals. The more you do, the better it’s going to work. 

Paid media doesn’t work in the same way. Sure, it can generate impressions and raise the brand, but ad blindness is an extremely real consequence. According to Forbes, Americans are inundated with 4,000 to 10,000 every single day, and it’s no secret that they start to filter them out eventually. 

Overall, a solid SEO strategy sets up a solid foundation for marketing success that can only be elevated through paid campaigns. The same can’t be said for the reverse.

Ryan Gould is Vice President of Strategy and Marketing Services at Elevation Marketing. He can be found on LinkedIn.

The post Five reasons why SEO should be prioritized over paid media campaigns appeared first on Search Engine Watch.

Search Engine Watch


Instagram Reels launches globally in over 50 countries, including US

August 5, 2020 No Comments

Instagram Reels, the company’s significant effort in challenging TikTok on short-form creative content, is launching globally, starting today. The feature is being made available across 50 countries, including the U.S., as TechCrunch had previously reported. The expansion means Reels will now be available in key international markets, such as India, Brazil, France, Germany, the U.K., Japan, Australia, Spain, Mexico, Argentina and several others.

The timing is fortuitous, given TikTok’s uncertain future in the U.S. as the Trump administration weighs either banning the Chinese-owned app entirely or forcing it to sell off its U.S. operations.

However, Facebook’s plans to respond to the TikTok threat were underway well before now.

In late 2018, Facebook launched a TikTok clone called Lasso. The app didn’t take off and was shuttered this year. Though unsuccessful as a standalone product, Lasso represents Facebook’s ability to run what are essentially large-scale beta tests that don’t have to generate revenue. This allows Facebook to collect a sizable amount of user behavioral data that can then be put to use when building new features for flagship apps, like it’s doing with Instagram Reels.

Following Lasso’s tests, Instagram released Reels in Brazil in November 2019, where it was called Cenas, to see how Instagram users would respond to a different sort of mobile video experience.

Those tests steadily expanded outside the U.S. to markets like India and parts of Europe in 2020.

With Reels, Instagram’s goal is not just to capture the now potentially up-for-grabs TikTok audience in the U.S. — it’s to steal them away even if TikTok remains.

Image Credits: Instagram

Today, Instagram caters to a certain kind of creator community that doesn’t always overlap with the younger, Gen Z (and up) user base that’s found a home on TikTok. (And Gen Alpha, if we’re being honest.) Instead, Instagram users either share polished, curated photos to their Feed; publish personal and casual videos in Stories; or share almost YouTube-like creator content to IGTV. Meanwhile, Instagram’s browsing experience hasn’t offered a way to quickly swipe through videos like on TikTok.

Image Credits: Instagram

Reels aims to change that. The feature lets users create and publish 15-second videos using a new set of editing tools that include options like AR effects, a countdown timer, a new align tool to line up different takes and, of course, music. Instagram’s deals with major record labels mean users won’t have to wonder if their sound will later be removed due to a rights issue and will offer a variety of musical content right out of the gate.

A comprehensive audio catalog could be a competitive advantage for Reels — not to mention a feature that’s difficult for smaller apps to acquire due to the complicated nature of record label negotiations.

When TikTok users recently descended on rival apps upon news of a potential TikTok ban in the U.S., one of their chief complaints was the lack of good music or popular sounds. Some even republished their favorites under hashtags like #sounds or #TikToksounds in an effort to rebuild TikTok’s catalog via user-generated uploads.

Instagram understood the importance of music — not just editing tools, workflow and discovery — in helping its TikTok competitor thrive. TikTok, after all, has its own record label contracts — though the extent of those deals haven’t been widely published.

“We think it’s really important to honor the rights of the music labels — and that’s one we’ve been working on for years now,” said Instagram head of Product, Vishal Shah. “We’re launching Reels now in countries where we have rights. We think that the catalog is quite deep and it has some unique content that you can’t really find, at that depth, in other platforms. At the same time, we wanted to make sure that all the restrictions that we needed to put in place — whether that was on the country basis or what could people download and use and remix etc. — were all built into the product from from day one. That’s something we’ve been working with the labels on and was an important consideration in the launch,” he added.

What he didn’t mention is that Instagram’s music industry relationships aren’t only with the record labels. The company has deals with other publishers and independents as well, which have been part of the company’s ongoing partnership efforts and strategic negotiations that are helping fuel other Facebook products, like the recent launch of Music Videos. 

Image Credits: Instagram

Using Reels is easy because it’s built into the Instagram Camera that people already know how to use. To create a new Reel, you’ll select the option at the bottom of the Instagram Camera, next to Story. The editing tools then pop up on the left side of the screen, which is where you’ll find the AR effects and other options, like the timer, speed and align features.

Like other Instagram posts, Reels can be saved to Drafts while they’re a work in progress. When ready to go live, Reels can be pushed out across key surfaces in the app — including Stories, Stories with Close Friends only or as a DM. If you have a public Instagram account, you also can publish Reels to the wider Instagram audience, which will discover them within a new space in Explore.

Image Credits: Instagram

Reels can also be captioned and hashtagged, and friends can be tagged — allowing Instagram to leverage the size and scale of its user base to help the new feature go viral. If Reels are published to Stories, they’ll disappear in 24 hours. Otherwise, Reels will continue to live on in a new tab on users’ profiles.

To watch Reels from Explore, users are presented in a vertical feed personalized to your interests, similar to TikTok. “Featured” Reels are those chosen by Instagram to guide users to original content and will be labeled accordingly.

Overall, what Instagram has built isn’t all that differentiated from TikTok. But nor is it a direct clone.

Instead, Instagram has turned the entirety of the TikTok experience into a single feature among many others within its own app. That’s been a formula for success in the past — Instagram Stories is now bigger than all of Snapchat, for instance.

But TikTok has built something that may not be as easily replicated: a community of users who started their social media lives with underage accounts on Musical.ly. They grew up with the app, lived through the TikTok rebranding and now may see no need to switch — unless TikTok actually does disappear.

Or, as my tween put it when a friend told her TikTok wasn’t really going to be banned: “So Instagram built Reels for nothing?”


Social – TechCrunch


Even as cloud infrastructure growth slows, revenue rises over $30B for quarter

August 2, 2020 No Comments

The cloud market is coming into its own during the pandemic as the novel coronavirus forced many companies to accelerate plans to move to the cloud, even while the market was beginning to mature on its own.

This week, the big three cloud infrastructure vendors — Amazon, Microsoft and Google — all reported their earnings, and while the numbers showed that growth was beginning to slow down, revenue continued to increase at an impressive rate, surpassing $ 30 billion for a quarter for the first time, according to Synergy Research Group numbers.


Enterprise – TechCrunch


Facebook to launch ‘virtual dating’ over Messenger for Facebook Dating users

April 25, 2020 No Comments

Facebook will soon allow users to go on “virtual dates,” the company announced today. The social network is planning to introduce a new video calling feature that will allow users of its Facebook Dating service to connect and video call over Messenger, as an alternative to going on a real-world date. This sort of feature is much in demand amid the coronavirus pandemic, which has forced people to stay home and practice social distancing.

But for online dating apps, which aim to connect people in the real world, it’s a significant challenge for their business.

For the time being, government lockdowns have limited the places where online daters could meet up for their first date. Restaurants, malls, bars and other retail establishments are closed across regions impacted by the coronavirus outbreak. But even when those restrictions lift, many online dating app users will be wary of meeting up with strangers for those first-time, getting-to-know-you dates. Video chat offers a safer option to explore potential connections with their matches.

When the new Facebook Dating feature goes live, online daters will be able to invite a match to a virtual date. The recipient can either choose to accept or decline the offer via a pop-up that appears.

If they accept, the Facebook Dating users will be connected in a video chat powered by Facebook Messenger in order to get to know one another.

As the feature is still being developed, Facebook declined to share more specific details about how it will work, in terms of privacy and security features.

Facebook is not the first online dating service to pivot to video as a result of the pandemic. But many rival dating apps were adopting video features well before the coronavirus struck, as well.

Bumble, for example, has offered voice and video calling in its app for roughly a year. The feature there works like a normal phone call or Apple’s FaceTime. However, users don’t have to share their phone number or other private information, like an email address, which makes it safer.

The company says use of the feature has spiked over the last two months as users embrace virtual dating.

Meanwhile, Match Group has more recently rolled out video across a number of the dating apps it operates.

This month, the Match app added video chat that allows users who have already matched to connect over video calls. Match-owned Hinge also rolled out a “Dating from Home” prompt and is preparing its own live video date feature, as well, Match says. Plenty of Fish (PoF), another Match property, launched live-streaming in March, giving singles a new way to hang out with friends and potential matches.

Match Group’s flagship app Tinder has not yet embraced live video dates, but still offers a way for users to add video to their profiles. The company couldn’t comment on whether or not video dating was in the works for Tinder, but in the post-COVID era, it would be almost bizarre to not offer such feature.

Other dating apps have also launched video dating, including eHarmony and a number of lesser-known dating apps hoping to now gain traction for their video dating concepts.

Facebook says the feature will roll out in the months ahead and will be available everywhere Facebook Dating is available.


Social – TechCrunch


Facebook to launch ‘virtual dating’ over Messenger for Facebook Dating users

April 25, 2020 No Comments

Facebook will soon allow users to go on “virtual dates,” the company announced today. The social network is planning to introduce a new video calling feature that will allow users of its Facebook Dating service to connect and video call over Messenger, as an alternative to going on a real-world date. This sort of feature is much in demand amid the coronavirus pandemic, which has forced people to stay home and practice social distancing.

But for online dating apps, which aim to connect people in the real world, it’s a significant challenge for their business.

For the time being, government lockdowns have limited the places where online daters could meet up for their first date. Restaurants, malls, bars and other retail establishments are closed across regions impacted by the coronavirus outbreak. But even when those restrictions lift, many online dating app users will be wary of meeting up with strangers for those first-time, getting-to-know-you dates. Video chat offers a safer option to explore potential connections with their matches.

When the new Facebook Dating feature goes live, online daters will be able to invite a match to a virtual date. The recipient can either choose to accept or decline the offer via a pop-up that appears.

If they accept, the Facebook Dating users will be connected in a video chat powered by Facebook Messenger in order to get to know one another.

As the feature is still being developed, Facebook declined to share more specific details about how it will work, in terms of privacy and security features.

Facebook is not the first online dating service to pivot to video as a result of the pandemic. But many rival dating apps were adopting video features well before the coronavirus struck, as well.

Bumble, for example, has offered voice and video calling in its app for roughly a year. The feature there works like a normal phone call or Apple’s FaceTime. However, users don’t have to share their phone number or other private information, like an email address, which makes it safer.

The company says use of the feature has spiked over the last two months as users embrace virtual dating.

Meanwhile, Match Group has more recently rolled out video across a number of the dating apps it operates.

This month, the Match app added video chat that allows users who have already matched to connect over video calls. Match-owned Hinge also rolled out a “Dating from Home” prompt and is preparing its own live video date feature, as well, Match says. Plenty of Fish (PoF), another Match property, launched live-streaming in March, giving singles a new way to hang out with friends and potential matches.

Match Group’s flagship app Tinder has not yet embraced live video dates, but still offers a way for users to add video to their profiles. The company couldn’t comment on whether or not video dating was in the works for Tinder, but in the post-COVID era, it would be almost bizarre to not offer such feature.

Other dating apps have also launched video dating, including eHarmony and a number of lesser-known dating apps hoping to now gain traction for their video dating concepts.

Facebook says the feature will roll out in the months ahead and will be available everywhere Facebook Dating is available.

Mobile – TechCrunch


Over two dozen encryption experts call on India to rethink changes to its intermediary liability rules

January 10, 2020 No Comments

Security and encryption experts from around the world are joining a number of organizations to call on India to reconsider its proposed amendments to local intermediary liability rules.

In an open letter to India’s IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad on Thursday, 27 security and cryptography experts warned the Indian government that if it goes ahead with its originally proposed changes to the law, it could weaken security and limit the use of strong encryption on the internet.

The Indian government proposed (PDF) a series of changes to its intermediary liability rules in late December 2018 that, if enforced, would require millions of services operated by anyone from small and medium businesses to large corporate giants such as Facebook and Google to make significant changes.

The originally proposed rules say that intermediaries — which the government defines as those services that facilitate communication between two or more users and have five million or more users in India — will have to proactively monitor and filter their users’ content and be able to trace the originator of questionable content to avoid assuming full liability for their users’ actions.

“By tying intermediaries’ protection from liability to their ability to monitor communications being sent across their platforms or systems, the amendments would limit the use of end-to-end encryption and encourage others to weaken existing security measures,” the experts wrote in the letter, coordinated by the Internet Society .

With end-to-end encryption, there is no way for the service provider to access its users’ decrypted content, they said. Some of these experts include individuals who work at Google, Twitter, Access Now, Tor Project and World Wide Web Consortium.

“This means that services using end-to-end encryption cannot provide the level of monitoring required in the proposed amendments. Whether it’s through putting a ‘backdoor’ in an encryption protocol, storing cryptographic keys in escrow, adding silent users to group messages, or some other method, there is no way to create ‘exceptional access’ for some without weakening the security of the system for all,” they added.

Technology giants have so far enjoyed what is known as “safe harbor” laws. The laws, currently applicable in the U.S. under the Communications Decency Act and India under its 2000 Information Technology Act, say that tech platforms won’t be held liable for the things their users share on the platform.

Many organizations have expressed in recent days their reservations about the proposed changes to the law. Earlier this week, Mozilla, GitHub and Cloudflare requested the Indian government to be transparent about the proposals that they have made to the intermediary liability rules. Nobody outside the Indian government has seen the current draft of the proposal, which it plans to submit to India’s Supreme Court for approval by January 15.

Among the concerns raised by some is the vague definition of “intermediary” itself. Critics say the last publicly known version of the draft had an extremely broad definition of the term “intermediary,” that would be applicable to a wide-range of service providers, including popular instant messaging clients, internet service providers, cyber cafes and even Wikipedia.

Amanda Keton, general counsel of Wikimedia Foundation, requested the Indian government late last month to rethink the requirement to bring “traceability” on online communication, as doing so, she warned, would interfere with the ability of Wikipedia contributors to freely participate in the project.

A senior executive with an American technology company, who requested anonymity, told TechCrunch on Wednesday that even as the proposed changes to the intermediary guidelines need major changes, it is high time that the Indian government decided to look into this at all.

“Action on social media platforms, and instant communications services is causing damage in the real world. Spread of hoax has cost us more than at least 30 lives. If tomorrow, someone’s sensitive photos and messages leak on the internet, there is currently little they can expect from their service providers. We need a law to deal with the modern internet’s challenges,” he said.


Social – TechCrunch


Pre-made calendar with over 300 holidays to help plan editorial content

November 1, 2019 No Comments

A carefully planned content marketing strategy contains several key ingredients including an understanding of who you’re creating content for (e.g., your persona or personas), how your content will help them, and some key performance indicators to measure success.

However, even the most thoughtful and well-planned content strategy can run into roadblocks without a detailed editorial plan. The editorial plan should include what categories and topics you plan to write about, how you intend to amplify your content (e.g., social media, email, etc.) and—the most important bit of all—a list of relevant, highly engaging ideas that incorporates a balance of evergreen and time-sensitive content.

Event-specific content can be challenging to create with any consistency, but with some planning and foresight, it is possible to plan out your editorial calendar in advance. One way to do this is to align some of your topics with seasonal holidays, observance days, and themes. 

holiday planner social media

[Image source]

A holiday for every week, month and season 

At CommonMind, we’ve compiled a holiday planner specifically aimed at social media content planning. It contains more than 300 holidays bucketed in three categories as follows:

  • 2019/2020 U.S. National Holidays: This calendar contains all the top favorites like Christmas, New Year’s Day and Tax Day (that last one is somebody’s favorite, I’m sure).
  • Educational Calendar/Events: This includes key dates such as Global Family Day and National Science Fiction Day which are observed globally. 
  • A Food-themed Calendar: Technically, these aren’t holidays, but they’re fun to observe and perfect for helping fill your editorial calendar, particularly if you are in the food and beverage industry (though this isn’t a requirement).

Since a long list of every conceivable holiday can seem a bit daunting to wrap your brain around, we’ve also created an embedded Google calendar that can be viewed in weekly or monthly increments or printed. 

holiday planner for social media example calendar

November 2019 Holiday Calendar – Source: CommonMind

Holiday planning isn’t just for retailers

When people think of the holiday season, it tends to mean the period of time between Thanksgiving and New Year’s (although it’s been creeping up in the calendar to incorporate Halloween as well). But holiday content planning isn’t just for retailers or companies whose business ebbs and flows depending on the season. Here are a few examples of how some lesser-known holidays and observed days can inspire great content.

World Vegan Day (November 2, 2019): This is relevant to a variety of businesses in the health and wellness industry. Here are a few examples:

  • A nutritionist could write a piece about how to create a nutrient-rich vegan diet.
  • A healthcare provider could create a list of physical signs for vegans to be aware of that indicate they’re not getting enough of a specific vitamin or mineral.
  • A fitness expert (or gym) could write about how to ensure vegans have enough energy for various types of workouts.

World Kindness Day (November 13, 2019)

  • A marketing agency could write about an ad campaign or case study which features kindness as the main theme.
  • A veterinary clinic could write about how kindness helps both pets and their owners live happy, more fulfilling lives.
  • Any  number of businesses can write about kindness as their approach to doing business such as through employee wellness and medical programs, community service and involvement, or promoting an internal culture of kindness.

National Hot Cocoa Day (December 13, 2019)

  • This is a cocoa-manufacturer’s dream holiday and the perfect day to promote their cocoa products with a blog post as well as via social media.
  • Food-related organizations (coffee shops, restaurants, caterers, grocery stores, etc.) could create an event around this day (e.g., drop in for a free cup of cocoa!) and promote it via their blog and social media accounts.
  • Retailers can cash in on the height of shopping season by offering free cocoa in stores, coupons that fall on this day, and stories that humanize the company which can be featured on the blog (e.g., feature an employee cocoa-related story).

As you can see, becoming familiar with nonstandard holidays as well as observance days can help spur creative ideas for content that’s relevant to a variety of businesses and industries (you don’t have to sell cocoa to take advantage of National Hot Cocoa Day).

Our Google Holiday Calendar is a great way to familiarize yourself with upcoming holidays and can be imported into your own calendar for easy reference. Since this may be overwhelming, you can also peruse the long list of holidays to begin brainstorming and filling out your editorial calendar for the rest of 2019 and into 2020.

Happy content planning!

Jacqueline Dooley is Director of Digital Strategy for CommonMind.

The post Pre-made calendar with over 300 holidays to help plan editorial content appeared first on Search Engine Watch.

Search Engine Watch


Daily Crunch: Facebook faces government pressure over encryption

October 4, 2019 No Comments

The Daily Crunch is TechCrunch’s roundup of our biggest and most important stories. If you’d like to get this delivered to your inbox every day at around 9am Pacific, you can subscribe here.

1. Facebook is being leaned on by US, UK, Australia to ditch its end-to-end encryption expansion plan

U.S. Attorney General William Barr, acting U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan, U.K. Home Secretary Priti Patel and Australia’s minister for home affairs, Peter Dutton, have co-signed an open letter to Facebook calling on the company to halt its plan to roll out end-to-end encryption across its suite of messaging products.

Facebook isn’t the only messaging company using end-to-end encryption, but it’s in governments’ crosshairs on account of a plan to expand its use of e2e crypto.

2. Bird raises $ 275 million Series D round at a $ 2.5 billion valuation

The scooter startup’s new round comes a few months after TechCrunch reported Bird was looking to raise a Series D round at a $ 2.5 billion valuation.

3. Instagram launches Threads, a Close Friends chat app with auto-status

What if Instagram could automatically tell your Close Friends you’re home, working, on-the-move or chilling and might want to hang out? That’s the idea behind its new companion app Threads.

4. Startups ‘are staying private way too long’ says Salesforce founder Marc Benioff

“What public markets do is indeed the great reckoning,” Benioff said while onstage at Disrupt SF. “But it cleanses [a] company of all of the bad stuff that they have.”

5. Kitty Hawk reveals its secret project, Heaviside

HVSD (named after renowned physicist and electrical engineer Oliver Heaviside) is an electric aircraft designed to go anywhere and land anywhere fast and quietly. Sebastian Thrun’s aviation startup has been working on the aircraft for two years.

6. TikTok explains its ban on political advertising

This isn’t really a new ban, but rather a reiteration of an existing one. The company says it won’t allow ads supporting a candidate, political party or issue, because they don’t fit with the “light-hearted and irreverent feeling” that the app is aiming for.

7. Google-backed Dunzo raises $ 45M to expand its hyperlocal delivery startup in India

An Indian startup that is increasingly posing a threat to established food and grocery delivery businesses, as well as to e-commerce giants, just closed a new financing round.


Social – TechCrunch


Space Photos of the Week: Hubbub Over Hubble

August 24, 2019 No Comments

You can’t beat space telescopes for an unencumbered view of the cosmos.
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