Noah Waldman, 17 Feb 2020

The Week in Social: Spotify’s Podcast Ads, 2 Billion on WhatsApp, Memeing the Election, and a Better Feed

Spotify to Ruin Podcast (Ads)?

One of the best parts about podcast advertising, as an advertiser and a listener, is that they’re usually read by the hosts who are allowed to put their own flavor on it. The process is a little risky, but it also often results in ads that feel personal and authentic, making them more effective, like a WOM recommendation rather than an ad spot. So, of course a platform wants to put that at risk through automation.

By privatizing and automating podcast ad distribution, Spotify would be making things worse for:

  • Podcasters, who would lose control over their own monetization
  • Advertisers, who would be dealing with yet another platform like Google or Facebook
  • Listeners, who now have to deal with less engaging ads

and

  • Spotify, who is missing the forest for the trees here.

Read more at BIG

WhatsApp Reaches 2 Billion

In case you were wondering, that’s double the population of Instagram, and half-a-billion less than Facebook’s total. WhatsApp’s userbase, which is approximately 1/8th of the world’s population, is a testament to how much people actually value their privacy. It’s a note that Facebook – WhatsApp’s owner – is hopefully paying attention to for more than just lip-service. People value their privacy, who knew? Besides everyone.

Read more at The Verge

Bloomberg Memeing his Way to the White House?

Has there ever been a greater test of the power of influencer marketing? On one hand, this is a development right out of Black Mirror, and is a test of the power of American democracy to resist being bought outright by oligarchs. On the other, if a presidential candidate is brave enough to rely on Zoomer memers to build his brand, then certainly you should be able to convince any brand you work with to be a little braver.

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Read more at AVClub

Instagram’s Blowing Our Damn Minds!

A feed that displays posts in the order that they were posted? How…what kind of mad genius came up with that idea!? How will people know what pieces of the content they signed up to receive from other people is actually worth their time without an algorithm?

For real though, the platforms all deciding that they should mess with time itself should’ve been an early sign that they were going power-mad.

Read more at The Next Web