Getting creative with music, ad transparency, and more consumer protection in this week's edition of Marketing in the Digital Age.
Summary: Not only did Instagram announce this week that Instagram Stories has 400m active users, it announced that Stories' users in the US and 5 other countries will be able to add music to videos and photos they shoot on the platform. They did a deal with all major labels to include hits users can time their photos and videos to and post.
The growth itself to 400m users, up from 300m in November, shows a growth rate of six times that of Snap's entire app.
Opinion: Watch out, Music.ly, Facebook is coming for you next! I could see there being some antitrust issues if this were a more regulated space, but social media is still a Wild West (which Cambridge Analytica exposed).
Summary: In response to their role in the spreading of misinformation, particularly with the 2016 presidential election, Twitter launched an Ads Transparency Center. From this, anyone can view search any Twitter handle and see what ad campaigns the account has placed in the past seven days. For political advertisers in the US, there will be added info like billing, ad spend, impressions per tweet, and demographic targeting. Facebook will be announcing a similar ad transparency initiative.
Opinion: It still floors me that our presidential election was tampered with by people who were not within the confounds of Facebook. This is a good step, and my guess is that there will be people who monitor these buys and report on them a-la-blog style to make a living out of it. Wait, maybe I should be that person...
Summary: California lawmakers unanimously signed a historic privacy bill into effect. As reported in Wired, "The new legislation gives Californians the right to see what information businesses collect on them, request that it be deleted, get access to information on the types of companies their data has been sold to, and direct businesses to stop selling that information to third parties.... The ballot initiative would have prevented businesses from denying service to consumers if they opt out of having their data tracked and stored. The law contains similar language, though it creates what Hertzberg calls the "Spotify exception," which allows companies to offer different services or rates to consumers based on the information they provide—for instance, a free product based on advertising. But, the bill states, the difference must be 'reasonably related to the value provided to the consumer by the consumer’s data.'"
Opinion: First, something was finally done unanimously within the government! That in and of itself seems to be a victory in our current political climate. Second, this seems to be a great step in protecting consumers' data. Third, I do wonder how this will indeed affect technology innovation.