Changing patterns around media
Google is going after the whole text-to-speech thing.It’s added a feature to its light search app called Go, which was designed for countries like India and Indonesia. Go algo-magically turns all text sites into spoken word. They’re starting out with 28 languages, including Hindi, Bengali, and Tamil. You can imagine how powerful this is for markets with low literacy levels. This will change society faster than you think.
There’s a new messaging app in China.You’d think no one would bother given WeChat’s dominance. But here we have it — Bullet Messaging, which now tops China’s iOS App store. The best feature: the app translates your voice to text in real time.
Former Australian Prime Minister (yes, there are too many to keep up with of late) Kevin Rudd wrote a scathing piece on Rupert Murdoch, calling him “the greatest cancer on the Australian democracy”.In fact, he blames Murdoch’s media empire for pushing a far-right view of the world, resulting in Brexit, the Tea Party, Trump, and for undermining action on climate change in Australia. That’s a lot of blame. He’s now calling for a royal commission into the future of media ownership in Australia.
Tired of all the racist crap on Twitter?There’s an alternative: Mastodon. It’s an open-source, community-run site that lets you post “toots”. Silly name aside, the service creates different chunks of communities, each with its own rules and administrators.
On The Media, that fabulous podcast series on media (and my first ever podcast habit!), actually made a show about Twitch.If you haven’t already seen it, Twitch is the biggest video streaming service on the net. It’s bigger than Netflix. If you haven’t heard about it, it’s probably because you’re not into PC gaming. But it’s creating millions of dollars for players, and it has plenty of lessons about engaging with audiences and sponsors — who are willing to pay. Isn’t that what media needs?
How odd. Teens are turning to Instagram to debate big issues.Specifically, they’re getting their information from so-called flop accounts. Never seen it? Neither have I. “Flop accounts bring attention to bad things or bad people that people should be aware of. We also post cringeworthy content for entertainment purposes,” says a 13-year-old flop admin.
China’s massive audio sharing platform Ximalaya FM is reportedly prepping for an IPO after making adjustments to its investment structure.The service, which has about 6 million daily active users, is said to have recently raised $460 million at a $3.4 billion valuation from investors such as Tencent and Goldman Sachs.
Social media is reshaping the way satire is produced and distributed across Asia — as well as how governments strive to contain it.Some satirists continue to make themselves heard despite the strongman politics of Asia.
The Stock Exchange of Thailand is threatening to delist Nation Multimedia Group for (still) failing to submit its financial statements for the year ended December 31, 2017.Nation now has till August 27 to respond.
How big is the collapse in ad revenues for U.S. magazines?Magazines lost about $417 million in revenue last year — a massive collapse as major advertisers like Pfizer and J&J move their money elsewhere (presumably digital).
Slack, that increasingly common collaboration tool at media companies, is reportedly raising a fresh round of $400 million or more — its biggest so far.That would put its post-money valuation at more than $7 billion.
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