If you’ve never read our weekly news roundup before, we try to pick up a few things you most likely won’t have seen.
And some of the big stories, too. Here’s the latest…
Instagram tests direct response ads in Stories
Instagram is testing direct response ads for its Snapchat-esque Stories feature. Direct response ads are those which allow a person to click and perform an action such as downloading an app or registering for a service.
Stories ads are more appealing because the format takes up the whole screen and is interactive. They have been a success for some advertisers on Snapchat, who may now consider Instagram.
— Ad Age (@adage) 26 May 2017
More than a dozen tech firms now offer benefits that pay female employees if they want to have their eggs frozen
CNET has a nice little report on the trend started by Facebook in 2014 and quickly followed by Apple.
Egg freezing costs around $10,000 a go, and companies such as Google, Uber and Yahoo are willing to stump up, so that younger women can preserve eggs and carry a baby later in life if they wish, when conceiving is more difficult.
Facebook’s moderation policies revealed
The articles make for interesting reading, with many examples illustrated, such as the one pictured below regarding credible violence and calls to action. But perhaps the most eyebrow-raising piece is The Guardian’s interview with some of the moderators themselves. One man says:
“There was literally nothing enjoyable about the job. You’d go into work at 9am every morning, turn on your computer and watch someone have their head cut off. Every day, every minute, that’s what you see. Heads being cut off.”
JD.com to fly drones that can lift 2,000 pounds in weight
JD.com already delivers by drone, beginning in 2016 with flights in four provinces over around 20 fixed routes. This number of routes is to expand to around 100 by the end of 2017.
In even more exciting news, JD.com is beginning a two to three year project to develop a drone that can lift a tonne in weight.
According to Recode, the early application for this mega drone will ‘likely be to deliver food from agricultural centers in rural China into cities, rather than for last-mile delivery like the smaller drones already in use.’
Amazon opens first NY bookstore
An Amazon Books store opened in Manhattan on Thursday, ironically on a site once occupied by a Borders Books and Music (which failed partly because it was too late to online – outsourcing to Amazon – and opened too many stores).
Recode has some lovely pics from the store, including distinctive signage using information we are used to from the web, such as customer reviews (including star ratings and number of reviews) and recommendations.
Amazon Books NY, via Recode
Payday loan regulations change in the UK
Today (26 May), regulations come into force that demand all online lenders advertise on at least one price comparison website. Lenders are also required to display “prominently” a link on their own websites to a price comparison site.
The Competition and Markets Authority says this will allow customers to compare loans more easily and establish the best value.
Zuckerberg gets even more political
Mark Zuckerberg gave a speech at Harvard this week, criticising the rise of nationalism and authoritarianism, the fight against which he called the ‘struggle of our time’.
It was the first time Zuckerberg as talked about policy, saying that “There is something wrong with our system when I can leave here and make billions of dollars in ten years, when millions of students can’t afford to pay off their loans, let alone start a business.”
He continued, “Giving everyone the freedom to pursue purpose isn’t going to be free. People like me should pay for it – and a lot of you are going to do really well and you should too.”
The Facebook founder discussed the idea of a universal basic income for all Americans, as well as affordable childcare and healthcare.
Tanya Joseph joins The Pool
Tanya Joseph was director of business partnerships at Sport England when, in 2015, she masterminded the organisation’s This Girl Can campaign. Later that year she won Marketer of the Year at Econsultancy and Marketing Week’s Masters of Marketing awards.
Now, she has been snapped up to lead marketing at The Pool, the publishing startup aimed at busy women, created by Lauren Laverne and Sam Baker.
Sweden partners with Airbnb, rents out entire country
Sweden has listed its landscape on Airbnb, with nine amazing locations including featured (see below).
The country is notorious for smart marketing, including its ‘Call a Swede’ campaign. Nikki Gilliland gives us the lowdown on the Airbnb tie-up.
Walkers interactive Twitter campaign goes predictably awry
Just tweet a selfie with the #WalkersWave hashtag and Gary Lineker will hold up your picture and you’ll be entered into a draw for Champions League final tickets.
A really cool idea, except it was hijacked by trolls yesterday, who managed to successfully get Walkers to incorporate pictures of renowned and reviled criminals.
Walkers took an hour or so to realise, before taking the videos down and releasing a statement, saying: “We recognise people were offended by irresponsible and offensive posts by individuals, and we apologise. We are equally upset and have shut down all activity.”