We explore the consequences of Facebook’s news ban, WhatsApp addresses privacy concerns and a land of persistence on Mars. This is your daily crunch for February 18, 2021.
Big story: Facebook’s Australian news ban is too broad
Yes, this was the major story in yesterday’s newspaper, but 24 hours later, we have a better understanding of how things are playing out.
A quick refresher: As the Australian government is debating a law that would require tech platforms to pay media companies for linked content, Facebook has moved on to stop sharing or viewing news . The move has been criticized as censorship and even “an attack on a sovereign nation”, but has also been praised as a proper stand against the “link tax”. (Google has made similar threats but is bargaining with Australian publishers instead.)
Regardless of how you feel about the decision in theory, the initial implementation has left something to be desired, with hospitals, universities, unions, government departments’ Facebook pages and the Bureau of Meteorology all cleared up. When reached for comment, Facebook confirmed that it deliberately applied a broader definition of news, designed to reflect “formatted” legislation.
After the backlash, WhatsApp to roll-out the in-app banner to better explain its privacy update – if users choose to review the changes, they will be shown a deeper summary, including how to WhatsApp with Facebook Works, additional details about it are included.
Apple TV + comes on Google TV devices starting with Chromecast – it will also be available on Google TV from both Sony and TCL, expanding to other Android TV-powered devices in the coming months.
Microsoft Announces Next Permanent Release of Office – If You Use Office, Microsoft, Really, Really, Really, Like You Want to Buy a Cloud-Enabled Subscription to Microsoft 365, But It’s for Office A standalone will continue to provide permanent licenses.
Startup, Funding and Venture Capital
Robinhood goes to Congress – Alex Wilhelm did not enjoy watching.
Math learning app Photomath raises $ 23M as it reaches 220 million downloads – chances are, if you are a teenager in your home you may already know about the app.
Wholesale Marketplace Abound Raises $ 22.9M – The Marketplace helps independent retailers stock their shelves with new products from up-and-coming brands.
Additional crisis advice and analysis
Why do SaaS companies accelerate usage-based pricing? – Public SaaS companies that have adopted usage-based pricing grow faster because they are better able to land new customers, grow with them and keep them as customers.
Creating a forecasting machine for financial markets – Data is the backbone of any forecasting machine.
Check out the incredible speakers joining us on Extra Crunch Live in March – our March Slate begins with Sarah Kunst of Cleo Capital and Julia Collins of Planet FWD.
(Xtra Crunch is our membership program to help founders and startup teams move forward. You can sign up here.)
Perseverance sends back its first images of land and surface safely to Mars – firmly landed after a white-knuckle descent that involved taking a landing spot just before a rocket-powered sky-crane landing.
Tired of ‘Zoom University’? So is EdTech – a wave of startups trying to disrupt the virtual school day.
California DMV warned of data breech after a contractor was hit by Ransomware – Automatic Fund Transfer Services, which the DMV said used it to verify address changes, affected by unspecified stresses of ransomware this month happen.
Daily Crunch is the roundup of ClearTips among our biggest and important stories. If you want it delivered to your inbox every day around 3pm, you can subscribe here.