You may all be thinking about going on your hollibobs, but there's never a dull week in digital.

This week's news is a rattlebag of Facebook updates, ecommerce buyouts, ad spend revelations, and....cats.

Self checkout and mobile payment turn us into thieves

The NYT reports research from Leicester University that shows 'the use of self-service lanes and smartphone apps to make purchases generated a loss rate of nearly 4%, more than double the average.' 

Snapchat accused of racist selfie lens

The company argues the filter was designed to create an anime aesthetic.

P&G cuts back spend on targeted Facebook ads

The world's biggest advertiser admits it 'went too narrow', the words of Marc Pritchard, CMO.

Macy's to close 100 stores

Shares were up 16% after the announcement. The closures are part of a redesign of the Macy's portfolio.

With six consecutive quarters of sales decline, in part due to the impact of Amazon, the retailer had to take action.

Facebook to deny ad blockers

Facebook revealed it had engineered a way to serve ads to desktop ad-blocker users.

At the same time it unveiled Ad Preferences, so Facebook users can have greater oversight of how they are being targeted.

Take note though, two days later, AdBlocker Plus said it had already designed a workaround. Clearly the start of an arms race.

Mondo gets its banking licence

The branchless bank was granted its licence yesterday, joining recent licensees Tandem and Starling, and previous entrant Atom.

On Tuesday, the Competition and Markets Authority in the UK ruled that banks must open up their data to third parties (with consumer consent), so that better deals can be offered where available.

Facebook testing Rio Snapchat-style selfie feature

Snapchat's influence continues to be evident across more established social platforms. 

Alibaba revenue growth fuelled by mobile

Alibaba has announced its biggest quarterly sales growth since its 2014 flotation.

The FT reports that the 59% year-on-year jump in revenue to $4.8bn is fuelled by growth in mobile commerce.

Arianna Huffington steps down

No longer editing the Huffington Post, Arianna is now focusing on her wellness startup, Thrive.

Business Insider brings you the company's investor pitch. 

Walmart buys Jet

Walmart paid $3.3bn for the Amazon-esque startup.

The Economist features some great stats showing how more Walmart shoppers are using Amazon, and how Walmart's share of American commerce is decreasing.

jet.com

Intel buys deep learning startup

Intel has bought Nervana Systems, a startup that creates deep learning hardware and software.

This should enable rapid development of silicon chips designed for artificial intelligence. Watch this space.

Oracle Solutions Group is born

Digitas LBi, Oracle and Spindrift (LBi's Oracle implementation arm) have joined forces to create Oracle Solutions Group.

The new venture is described as ‘a one-stop shop for creative and technology consultancy and implementation’.

Dentsu to buy Merkle

The Japanese ad and PR firm will pay $1.5bn for a majority investment in Merkle, the performance marketing agency.

Honda cat choir ad

Lastly and bestly, Honda released a cat choir ad to jointly celebrate its summer clearance event and International Cat Day.

We thought you should watch it, given the cat video's role as a central tenet of the internet.

Ben Davis

Published 12 August, 2016 by Ben Davis @ Econsultancy

Ben Davis is Editor at Econsultancy. He lives in Manchester, England. You can contact him at ben.davis@econsultancy.com, follow at @herrhuld or connect via LinkedIn.

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