Facebook reports growth in revenue and users in Q2
During its Q2 earnings call last week, Facebook reported revenue of $18.7 billion, up 11 per cent year-on-year, and said it is expecting revenue growth for the third quarter of about 10 per cent. The platform also shared that monthly users across all apps (Facebook, Messenger, WhatsApp and Instagram) also increased by 0.15 billion in Q2, now standing at 3.14 billion. The figures represent a 12 per cent annual growth in both DAU and MAU.
Microsoft moves to buy TikTok in four markets
Microsoft is exploring a deal with TikTok's parent company, ByteDance, which would see the tech giant own and operate TikTok in the US, Australia, New Zealand and Canada. Microsoft says it is aiming to complete its discussions with ByteDance no later than September 15th. The news comes as President Trump announced that he is planning to ban TikTok from operating in the US and, while talks were in place ahead of this, Microsoft met with the President after he voiced his opposition to the deal. Subsequently agreeing to open the deal up to other US minority investors.
TikTok calls for greater transparency within the industry
TikTok has announced that it is taking new measures to give outsiders access to the algorithms it uses to sort and share users’ videos, and that it will be letting experts observe moderation policies - challenging its rivals to follow suit. The move comes as TikTok launches its Transparency and Accountability Center for moderation and data practices.
Twitter updates its policy on links, adding hateful conduct and violence
As part of ongoing efforts to limit harmful content on its platform, Twitter has updated its policy on links, adding hateful conduct and violence to the list of link categories it may block and potentially suspend users for sharing.
We’ve clarified our approach to reducing the amount of harmful content on Twitter from outside sources.
Here’s an outline of the types of links we may block, and how we identify them to help keep you safe from malicious URLs: https://t.co/MhlSMJoxXs
— Twitter Support (@TwitterSupport) March 23, 2020
The NHL teams up with Twitter and Disney Streaming Services
The National Hockey League has partnered with Twitter and Disney Streaming Services to bring fans live two-minute look-ins of select games during the 2020 Stanley Cup Qualifiers and Stanley Cup Playoffs in the US. In the days leading up to each look-in, fans will be able to vote on the National Hockey League's Twitter page (@NHL) for which of the two games they want to see featured. As part of the activation, all participating teams and the Stanley Cup itself will have their own hashtag-triggered emojis.
Congress takes on the tech giants in antitrust hearing
The CEOs of Apple, Google, Facebook, and Amazon all appeared in front of Congress last week, as part of a hearing to determine if their business practices amount to anti-competitive monopolies. After five and a half hours, the session ended with the Committee Chair saying that it was clear to him that "these companies, as they exist today, have monopoly power." The committee will publish its report with conclusions and next steps in due course.
Ones to watch
Facebook has unveiled its latest experimental app, E.gg - calling it an "experimental new platform for weird and wonderful expressions of who you are and what you love"; Twitter has confirmed that it’s exploring the idea of a paid subscription model, and has begun surveying users about potential features; and WeChat has officially stopped operations in India after being banned by the country over privacy fears.