1. Publishers Pissed at Audible Captions
Earlier this week, Audible revealed that it was working on a new feature for its audiobook app: Audible Captions, which will use machine learning to transcribe audio recordings for listeners, allowing them to read along with the narrator. On its face, the idea seems useful, much in the same way that one may turn on subtitles when watching TV, but publishers have some reason to be concerned: it’s possible that fewer people will buy distinct e-book or physical books if they can simply pick up an Audible audiobook and get the text for free, too.
How do the featured authors feel?
They’re pissed. In fact, some are asking for their books to be withheld from the feature. A number of publishers are demanding that their books be excluded, saying these captions are “unauthorized and brazen infringements of the rights of authors and publishers.”
(Source: The Verge)
2. Facebook Error in Children’s Chatrooms
Facebook said Monday that a “technical error” allowed thousands of kids who used the company’s messaging app for children to join group chats with people who weren’t approved by their parents. The app, called Messenger Kids, lets children between 6 and 12 years old send messages and video chat with family members and friends who their parents accept. The social media giant notified parents of the error and said they couldn’t find the source of the error—this only fueled contempt for the app.
What did parents think?
The app has been controversial since its launch in December 2017. Child advocacy groups have repeatedly urged Facebook to shut down the app, arguing it violates a federal law aimed at protecting a child’s online privacy.
3. Tinder Bypasses Google’s Cut
Spotify and Netflix both have come up with creative ways to push people outside the Apple and Google ecosystems on mobile to avoid having to pay Google’s fee. Now, Tinder is joining the club. To avoid paying Google’s 30% cut on in-app purchases of subscriptions to services like Tinder Gold and Tinder Plus, Match Group will now encourage users to enter credit card details directly into Tinder’s systems, according to Bloomberg.
How does Google feel about this?
It’s not clear whether Google will take action against Tinder for trying to skirt the store. In the event Google decides to do nothing, that could mean many more apps follow Match Group’s lead in pushing users to give the app maker, and not the Play Store, their credit card info.
(Source: The Verge)