Ashley Carman
Ashley Carman
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Barack Obama and Bruce Springsteen are now co-hosts of a Spotify-exclusive podcast

Barack Obama and Bruce Springsteen are now co-hosts of a Spotify-exclusive podcast

Filed under:Renegades: Born in the USA is out nowBarack Obama is getting into the podcast game. Today, Spotify announced that the former president and rockstar Bruce Springsteen — yes, you read that right — will host a show called Renegades: Born in the USA exclusively for the audio platform. They’ll discuss “race, fatherhood, marriage, and the state of America,” per a press release, and the first two episodes premiere today for both free and premium Spotify users. The first season will contain eight episodes total.Higher Ground, the production company owned by Michelle and Barack Obama,...

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Ashley Carman
5d ago
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Facebook is reportedly working on a Clubhouse copy

Facebook is reportedly working on a Clubhouse copy

Filed under:Who’s surprised?Facebook, a company known for from , has reportedly set its sights on social audio. The New York Times that the company is working on a copycat of Clubhouse, the buzzy invite-only social audio startup. The Times reports the product is in the “early stages of development,” so it’s unclear if and when it might launch.The news comes only CEO Mark Zuckerberg joined Clubhouse and participated in a room to talk about the future of augmented and virtual reality. His presence on the app was shocking, given it’s a new social network, so the fact that Facebook might now be...

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Ashley Carman
Feb 10
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Mark Cuban is co-founding a podcast app where hosts can talk to fans live and monetize their conversations

Mark Cuban is co-founding a podcast app where hosts can talk to fans live and monetize their conversations

Filed under:Fireside is launching this yearMark Cuban is getting in on the audio and podcasting hype. Alongside co-founder Falon Fatemi, he’s planning to launch , a “next-gen podcast platform” that facilitates live conversation, according to an email sent to possible creator partners seen by The Verge. The app idea is similar to the buzzy live audio startup Clubhouse, except with the ability to natively record conversations. A source close to Fireside says the app plans to launch publicly this year.Fatemi, who co-founded and , promises a platform where creators will be able to broadcast,...

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Ashley Carman
Feb 8
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Instagram says its algorithm won’t promote Reels that have a TikTok watermark

Instagram says its algorithm won’t promote Reels that have a TikTok watermark

Filed under:No more recycled contentInstagram’s newest guidance for creators makes one thing clear: the platform wants people to stop posting recycled TikToks to Reels. Today, Instagram says it’s making changes to its algorithm and how it recommends Reels to users. Along with that, it’s issuing new best practices on its to give Instagram users tips on how to make content that’s likely to be seen and promoted.The team now recommends that Reels users post vertical videos that use music found in Instagram’s library or sounds that they find on Reels. They also suggest “starting a trend” that...

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Ashley Carman
Feb 9
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Instagram lead says he’s not happy with Reels yet and might ‘consolidate’ video formats

Instagram lead says he’s not happy with Reels yet and might ‘consolidate’ video formats

Filed under:‘We have to be honest that TikTok is ahead.’Adam Mosseri, the head of Instagram, isn’t thrilled with the platform’s TikTok competitor . He discussed the format, which launched in the US in August, during an interview with today.“I’m not yet happy with it,” he says. “We’re growing both in terms of how much people are sharing and how much people are consuming, but we have a long way to go. And we have to be honest that TikTok is ahead.”He went on to say the team is mostly focused on “table stakes” right now, and not honed in on how to differentiate itself. Specifically, he calls...

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Ashley Carman
Jan 19
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Spotify says it’s dominating the podcasting market because of a million-plus tiny podcasts

Spotify says it’s dominating the podcasting market because of a million-plus tiny podcasts

Filed under:Anchor powered more than 1 million show launches in 2020Spotify’s $100 million-plus Anchor acquisition is seemingly paying off. In data as part of its annual Wrapped look-back on the year, the company says Anchor, which makes podcast creation software, powered 80 percent of new podcasts on Spotify this year, meaning the software contributed more than 1 million shows to Spotify’s catalog in 2020 alone. Overall, Anchor powers 70 percent of Spotify’s total podcast catalog, or around 1.3 million out of over 1.9 million shows.People also seem to be listening to that content. Spotify...

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Ashley Carman
Dec 2
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Comcast to raise internet and TV prices nationwide next year

Comcast to raise internet and TV prices nationwide next year

Filed under:An expensive year for Comcast customersIf you’re a Comcast TV and internet user, prepare for price hikes. The company is planning to increase the prices of a variety of services starting January 1st, 2021, according to and a document detailing the various price increases .The increases include as much as $4.50 per month added to the “Broadcast TV” fee and up to $2 per month added to the Regional Sports Network (RSN) fee, which collectively would add as much as $78 per year.In a statement to Ars Technica, a Comcast spokesperson confirmed the above fees, as well as a $3 per month...

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Ashley Carman
Nov 25
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Spotify is acquiring podcast hosting company Megaphone for $235 million

Spotify is acquiring podcast hosting company Megaphone for $235 million

Filed under:It’s all about the adsSpotify’s making another big podcasting acquisition. This time, it’s buying podcast hosting company Megaphone for $235 million, according to a source close to the companies. The deal doesn’t affect Spotify’s own podcasts — it already hosted its shows on Megaphone — but it does mean more shows will have access to Spotify’s proprietary ad insertion technology, called .SAI functions similarly to typical dynamic podcast ads, which are targeted based on a listener. But in Spotify’s case, the ads are inserted in real time as opposed to being swapped out ahead of...

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Ashley Carman
Nov 10
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Everyone on Instagram will soon be able to go live for four hours

Everyone on Instagram will soon be able to go live for four hours

Filed under:Plus, they can view those streams in their archiveInstagram continues to focus on improving its live video experience, and today, it announced multiple small changes that’ll make streaming on the platform and then saving those live videos easier. The biggest update is that streamers are no longer limited to 60-minute broadcasts — they can go live for up to four hours. This extended timeframe will be available to all Instagram users globally, so long as they have no history of IP or policy violations.People will also be able to view their own live streams in their private...

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Ashley Carman
Oct 27
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Spotify will let its podcast hosts include full songs in their shows

Spotify will let its podcast hosts include full songs in their shows

Filed under:Listeners can save the songs for later, tooSpotify is tying podcasts and music close together. The company announced today that it’s testing a new podcast format that’ll allow podcast listeners to hear entire music tracks during a show, as opposed to a brief sample. Hosts will also be able to create shows in this format through Anchor, the Spotify-owned podcast creation app. The new format effectively makes Spotify the only podcast platform where hosts can include entire songs in their shows without having to worry about copyright.Anchor creators in the US, UK, Canada,...

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Ashley Carman
Oct 14
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Spotify made a deal to turn its exclusive podcasts into TV shows and movies

Spotify made a deal to turn its exclusive podcasts into TV shows and movies

Filed under:Chernin Entertainment and Spotify are working togetherSpotify wants to turn more of its original podcasts into TV shows and movies. The company announced a partnership today with Chernin Entertainment, the production company behind Ford v Ferrari, Hidden Figures, and New Girl, to develop TV and movie pitches based on Spotify-exclusive and original podcasts. The “first look” partnership means Chernin will get first dibs on developing pitches around Spotify IP. Spotify says its library now consists of more than 250 original shows from which Chernin can work off initially.“Spotify...

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Ashley Carman
Sep 24
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Kickstarter will let creators include bonus "add-on" rewards for their campaigns

Kickstarter will let creators include bonus "add-on" rewards for their campaigns

Filed under:To encourage backers to spend moreKickstarter is making it easier for creators to give their backers more perks when supporting a campaign. The company “add-ons” today, or a la carte additional rewards that creators can offer on top of their standard backer rewards. For now, the feature is only available to select creators, although people can apply for early access by clicking the “offer add-ons” button when making their campaign. Kickstarter says it’ll expand the feature in the future and will take these applications into account.Before this feature, creators had to ask...

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Ashley Carman
Sep 22
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A third Spotify-owned podcast company is starting a union

A third Spotify-owned podcast company is starting a union

Filed under:Parcast joins Gimlet Media and The Ringer in unionization effortsParcast, the podcast production company Spotify , is . The Writers Guild of America, East announced the news today, along with a letter about why Parcast, which specializes in true crime and mystery shows, decided to organize.The production company says it wants to see Spotify commit to diversity, equity, and inclusion, as well as maintain a reasonable workload and overtime compensation. Parcast is also seeking clear job descriptions, equitable pay, transparent salary bands, and movement around creative and IP....

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Ashley Carman
Sep 2
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Instagram rolls out suggested posts to keep you glued to your feed

Instagram rolls out suggested posts to keep you glued to your feed

Filed under:You thought you were doneInstagram is expanding its feed today with the launch of “suggested posts.” These posts, from accounts you don’t follow, will show up after you’ve reached the end of your feed and give you the option to keep scrolling with Instagram’s suggestions. Up until now, the feed has been entirely determined by users’ preferences and the people they follow.For the past couple of years, Instagram users a message when they reach the end of their feeds, meaning they’ve seen every post over the past two days from people they follow. With suggested posts, they’ll have...

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Ashley Carman
Aug 19
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Instagram tests letting people run their own personal fundraisers

Instagram tests letting people run their own personal fundraisers

Filed under:Raise money for your tuition or businessInstagram people in the US, UK, and Ireland to raise money for their own personal causes. The company is launching the feature today as an initial test on Android phones, with iPhones to follow, after already making personal fundraising available to . To create a personal fundraiser on Instagram, edit your profile, tap “add fundraiser,” and then select “raise money.” You’ll then have to categorize the fundraiser, add details, select a photo to use, and then enter your payment info through Stripe. All fundraisers will then be submitted for...

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Ashley Carman
Jul 21
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This is Tinder’s new video chat feature, Face to Face

This is Tinder’s new video chat feature, Face to Face

Filed under:A test for nowTinder is introducing a major new feature today: video calls. Face to Face, as the company calls its own video chats, doesn’t require people to exchange private phone numbers and is rolling out as a test in 13 countries, including in the US in Virginia, Illinois, Georgia, and Colorado, as well as in Australia, Brazil, and France. Not all members in these states and countries will have access, just a select group. The team is hoping to see how well the video calls work from a technical standpoint, like how the servers handle them, before rolling the feature out more...

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Ashley Carman
Jul 8
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The hosts of The Nod want Spotify to hand over their podcast

The hosts of The Nod want Spotify to hand over their podcast

Brittany Luse and Eric Eddings worked hard to bring their Black culture podcast, The Nod, to life in 2017. While working full-time as employees on other programs for Gimlet Media as well as on an independent podcast called For Colored Nerds, Luse and Eddings brainstormed The Nod’s concept, recorded and edited a sample 20-minute episode along with a 10-minute segment and a trailer, and then pitched the show to the higher-ups at Gimlet Media, a podcasting network that has since been acquired by Spotify. They eventually got the green light and began releasing an episode a week for nearly three...

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Ashley Carman
Jun 30
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Spotify is testing interactive podcast ads so you never have to remember a promo code again

Spotify is testing interactive podcast ads so you never have to remember a promo code again

Filed under:Tap through for cheaper razorsSpotify wants to ensure you never forget a podcast advertiser’s promo code again. The company announced today that it’s testing a new feature called “In-App Offers” that give podcasts the ability to keep an embedded link on their episode pages that, when tapped, leads to an advertiser’s webpage. That webpage will automatically load with the promo code inserted. This way, people don’t have to remember podcast ads’ promo codes or go out of their way to find an advertiser’s website.The new feature is apparently just the start for Spotify’s interactive...

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Ashley Carman
Jun 22
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Joe Rogan’s podcast is becoming a Spotify exclusive

Joe Rogan’s podcast is becoming a Spotify exclusive

Filed under:A massive gain for the platformJoe Rogan, comedian and host of one of the most popular podcasts in the world, is taking his show to Spotify. The Joe Rogan Experience will soon become , meaning episodes’ full audio and video will only be available through the platform starting later this year. Up until now, Rogan’s show has never been available on Spotify, let alone exclusive to any platform.The show will become available on Spotify globally starting on September 1st, and it’ll become an exclusive sometime after that point. Listeners won’t have to pay to access the episodes, but...

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Ashley Carman
May 19
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Instagram now lets people delete comments in bulk and is testing pinned comments

Instagram now lets people delete comments in bulk and is testing pinned comments

Filed under:To make the platform more positiveInstagram is multiple new features starting today that are aimed at making the platform a more positive space. The company says it’s rolling out the ability to delete up to 25 comments at once and also block or restrict multiple accounts at the same time. The company says it’s been testing these features and found that they especially helped people with larger followings maintain a “positive environment.”The company’s also now giving people more control over who can tag or mention them in a post. People can select whether they want everyone,...

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Ashley Carman
May 12
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Everyone can now access their Instagram DMs on the web

Everyone can now access their Instagram DMs on the web

Filed under:The global rollout starts at 10AM ETInstagram’s making it easier for people to send direct messages from their browser. The company announced on Friday that it’s rolling out access to DMs on the web to everyone globally. The rollout starts today at 10AM ET.Instagram has been testing web DMs with a small group of users , and the experience isn’t changing with the wider rollout. Since that test started, Instagram has made small updates to more closely mimic DMs on the app, like including the emoji keyboard and adding a gallery view to photos and videos.DMs on the web will be...

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Ashley Carman
Apr 10
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The government says this backpack is a fraud, but the creator says he’s just a failure

The government says this backpack is a fraud, but the creator says he’s just a failure

Lots of people want a word with Doug Monahan — government lawyers, crowdfunding backers, people from his past, and me.I’d been trying to find him for over a year. As a reporter interested in crowdfunding disasters, I thought Monahan’s failed iBackpack project was one of the ultimate gadget pipe dreams gone bad. The beats were familiar: an idea that raised more than half a million dollars, only to never ship and leave behind thousands of angry backers. The difference in this story, however, is that for only the second time, the Federal Trade Commission is coming for the creator.The agency...

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Ashley Carman
Mar 4
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