LinkedIn Adds B2B Tools to Enhance Brand Safety, Exposure

LinkedIn is amping up its B2B marketing features designed to give brands an edge in a recessionary climate. In an effort to drive ad spending in the midst of economic uncertainty, the company has introduced a suite of tools — unveiled at the company’s B2Believe marketing summit — that aim to provide granular control over media investments on the Microsoft-owned platform. The new capabilities include ancillary measurement tools and fresh ad formats as well as a Brand Safety hub, allowing advertisers to boost performance on the LinkedIn Audience Network while setting brand safety guardrails. Continue reading LinkedIn Adds B2B Tools to Enhance Brand Safety, Exposure

Incubated at Twitter by Jack Dorsey, Bluesky Launching Beta

Bluesky, a decentralized platform conceived by Jack Dorsey while he was CEO of Twitter, has generated more than 30,000 waitlist signups as it prepares for a private beta launch of Bluesky Social. Bluesky’s main innovation is the Authenticated Transport (AT) Protocol, described as a networking technology “to power the next generation of social applications.” AT Protocol is an open standard designed to allow different social apps the ability to interoperate, giving users more control by letting them independently adjust algorithm settings or move profiles without losing data. Continue reading Incubated at Twitter by Jack Dorsey, Bluesky Launching Beta

Robot Renaissance Triggers a Surge in Automaton Workforce

The world is experiencing a skilled labor shortage, and robots are stepping in to fill the void. Last year, some 500,000 industrial robots were added to the global workforce, bringing the total figure to about 3.5 million, according to a new report by the International Federation of Robotics trade group, which says the number of robots added in 2021 exceeds by 22 percent a record set in 2018. The pattern indicates the industrial robotics market will grow from $15.7 billion in 2022 to $30.8 billion by 2027, a CAGR of 14.3 percent, according to the report. Continue reading Robot Renaissance Triggers a Surge in Automaton Workforce

Microsoft Integrates DALL-E 2 into Designer and Creator Apps

Microsoft announced it is integrating OpenAI’s DALL-E 2 into its new Microsoft Designer app, as well as its Microsoft Edge browser and the Image Creator tool in its Bing search engine. Microsoft provides cloud computing services to OpenAI and has partnered with OpenAI in AI commercialization efforts including the Azure OpenAI Service, now in preview, and GitHub Copilot. The Designer web app can be used to create designs for posters, presentations, invitations and other graphics that can be printed and used for display or shared on social or business media. Continue reading Microsoft Integrates DALL-E 2 into Designer and Creator Apps

LinkedIn Test Raises Ethics Questions Over Parsing Big Data

LinkedIn’s experiments on users have drawn scrutiny from a new study that says the platform may have crossed a line into “social engineering.” The tests, over five years from 2015 to 2019, involved changing the “People You May Know” algorithm to alternate between weak and strong contacts when recommending new connections. Affecting an estimated 20 million users, the test was designed to collect insight to improve the Microsoft-owned platform’s performance, but may have impacted people’s career opportunities. The study was co-authored by researchers at LinkedIn, Harvard Business School, MIT and Stanford and appeared this month in Science. Continue reading LinkedIn Test Raises Ethics Questions Over Parsing Big Data

Facebook, YouTube Among Top Social Apps for News in U.S.

Among American adults who regularly look to social media for news, Facebook outpaces all other sources, according to a study from Pew Research, which found 31 percent of U.S. adults claim to “regularly get news” from the Meta Platforms site. Google’s YouTube was second, with 25 percent, followed by Twitter (14 percent), Instagram (13 percent) and TikTok (10 percent). Examined as a percentage of each site’s total adult users seeking news there, news-seekers, Twitter popped at 53 percent, followed by Facebook (44 percent), Reddit (37 percent) and TikTok (33 percent). Among that subset, TikTok was the fastest-growing, up from 22 percent in 2020. Continue reading Facebook, YouTube Among Top Social Apps for News in U.S.

Netflix Names Microsoft as Sales and Tech Partner for Ad Tier

After much speculation, Netflix has revealed it has chosen Microsoft to help with configuring and launching an ad-supported subscription tier. Netflix announced plans for the new tier in April, explaining that a partner might be brought in to accelerate the effort and fuel innovation. Microsoft will supply ad-placement technology and ads served on Netflix will be exclusively booked through the Microsoft platform. “Microsoft offered the flexibility to innovate over time on both the technology and sales side, as well as strong privacy protections for our members,” Netflix COO Greg Peters explained in a statement. Continue reading Netflix Names Microsoft as Sales and Tech Partner for Ad Tier

LinkedIn Turns Up Volume on Creator Appeal with Live Audio

LinkedIn is expanding its live audio feature and making audio hosting available to all creators in an effort to drive engagement. After introducing live audio events in January, those using the platform’s Creator Mode can now take advantage of the update to host live audio events if they agree to adhere to “community policies of being a trustworthy, safe, and professional provider of content.” Although the live audio event hosting is currently limited to creators, all LinkedIn users can participate in the live chats. LinkedIn creators can now schedule audio events and promote upcoming discussions. In addition, LinkedIn’s upcoming Business Manager will help enterprise clients manage multiple assets. Continue reading LinkedIn Turns Up Volume on Creator Appeal with Live Audio

Direct-to-Consumer Marketers Seek Social Media Alternatives

Direct-to-consumer startups that previously relied mainly on Facebook and Instagram to reach customers continue to adapt strategies more than a year after Apple’s privacy policy revisions forced massive change on the digital advertising sector. Brands that were marketing before Apple’s privacy changes took effect last year had an opportunity to build customer bases using the uniquely specific targeting opportunities once offered by social media. Newer entities, however, are struggling to get a toehold as they search for comparable tools, looking well beyond the traditional social platforms. Continue reading Direct-to-Consumer Marketers Seek Social Media Alternatives

DeepMind’s Gato Moves Toward Artificial General Intelligence

Alphabet-backed research lab DeepMind last week released a new AI system called Gato that takes a step toward artificial general intelligence, or AGI, technology that enables machines to undertake and learn the same tasks as humans. Described by DeepMind as a “general purpose AI, Gato’s debut coincides with LinkedIn co-founder Reid Hoffman and DeepMind co-founder Mustafa Suleyman securing $225 million to fund Inflection AI, an artificial intelligence company the pair launched earlier this year to simplify communication between humans and computers. Neither investors nor valuation were disclosed. Continue reading DeepMind’s Gato Moves Toward Artificial General Intelligence

Clearview to Limit Sales After Settling Illinois Privacy Lawsuit

Facial recognition software company Clearview AI has agreed to limit U.S. sales of its identity database to businesses and other private actors as part of a lawsuit settlement. The case, brought by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and other groups, was filed in state court in Illinois, where the Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA) is considered the nation’s strongest data privacy law. The lawsuit alleged that Clearview routinely scraped images of state residents from the Internet without obtaining their permission or making them aware of the practice. Continue reading Clearview to Limit Sales After Settling Illinois Privacy Lawsuit

Twitter Will Begin Testing a Controversial Edit Button Feature

Subscribers to the premium Twitter Blue will soon be able to test an edit feature, according to Twitter, which says a tweet edit button has for years been its most-requested UI update. Speculation that the feature would be added has run rampant since Elon Musk, a vocal proponent, announced his significant investment in the company. Following news that Musk will join its board, Twitter revealed that it has been working on such a feature since last year and testing will begin in the coming months. However, the feature is somewhat controversial. Continue reading Twitter Will Begin Testing a Controversial Edit Button Feature

Feds Mine Crypto Trail and Find $3.6 Billion in Stolen Bitcoin

Led by the IRS Criminal Investigation branch, federal agents seized more than $3.6 billion in stolen Bitcoin last week, resulting in its largest seizure ever. Tracking the 119,754 Bitcoin stolen in 2016 from Hong Kong’s Bitfinex currency exchange across several continents, thorough the dark web and many transfer schemes was an amazing feat that says as much about the skill of U.S. law enforcement as it does the breadcrumb trails left by cryptocurrency. Engineered to be traceable (some say transparent), blockchain does offer a degree of anonymity that makes it attractive to crime. Continue reading Feds Mine Crypto Trail and Find $3.6 Billion in Stolen Bitcoin

Major Security Vulnerability Triggers Worldwide Internet Crisis

The Log4j code vulnerability has the media declaring the Internet in a state of crisis. Log4j is a Java-based logging framework developers use to track user activity within applications on the popular Apache web server. Security experts are rushing to patch the bug, which is being exploited to remotely assume control of vulnerable systems, stealing credentials, installing malware and launching other attacks that permeate consumer devices. Last week, the U.S. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency issued a Log4j alert, as did Australia’s CERT emergency response team. Continue reading Major Security Vulnerability Triggers Worldwide Internet Crisis

Talk of Twitter Sale Brews with Square/Block Floated as Suitor

Even before Jack Dorsey tweeted his resignation as Twitter CEO — and announced that another company he co-founded and runs as CEO, Square, will on December 10 change its name to Block — there was speculation that Twitter will soon be purchased. The rumors have been fueled by a belief that Twitter has potential beyond its stagnant share price — $44.47 as of yesterday’s close, slightly less than $44.90 the day of its November 2013 IPO — evidenced in its strong branding and popularity with elites. Top tech exec Parag Agrawal’s ascent to CEO is the corporate equivalent of staging in real estate.  Continue reading Talk of Twitter Sale Brews with Square/Block Floated as Suitor