Spotify continues dominance with Joe Rogan acquisition
Spotify is the dominant player in streaming music and is doubling down to be the streaming audio entertainment leader. The company has 130 million paid subscribers worldwide, well ahead of Apple, Amazon, and Google. Streaming music makes up 47% of global music revenues. Adding Joe Rogan’s podcasts, along with DC Comics and Kim Kardashian further differentiates the service with hot names. CNBC
dis-rup-shun: As the streaming video players have taught, offering original content is the key to keeping ahead of competitors. Spotify has taken a play from the video streamers and is widening the gap between it and its nearest competition. The company will be the dominant radio station, not just music station. Expect other popular audio entertainment, including sports and news, to be added to the platform.
Uber drivers sue for access to proprietary data
A group of Uber drivers in the UK who seek driver data to help unionize drivers in their nation are suing Uber for access to driver information. Uber says that statistics on drivers, including their speed, locations, acceleration, etc., are part of the company’s secret algorithms that bring it competitive advantage, and cannot be disclosed. Gizmodo
dis-rup-shun: The need for competent regulation of Big Tech firms, and difficult decision making about ownership of data is becoming more important, and more difficult every day. These data ownership questions are very significant, and precedent setting, and the creation of better government regulation is not only justifiable, but critical.
Coming soon: balloon rides to space
Space Perspective, a Florida based company, wants to take passengers to the highest levels of the Earth’s atmosphere, where the sky is black and one can see the curvature of the Earth. The pressurized capsule seats eight and includes a bar and bathroom. The company hopes to begin operations as early as next year. CNET
dis-rup-shun: Coming soon — kiddie birthday parties at 100,000 feet. The experience sounds exciting, but what government body regulates and inspects Space Perspective, ensuring that craft are well maintained, adequately equipped with safety gear, and is willing to send out a rescue party should something go wrong? Is this the purview of NASA or the FAA, or the FTC?
Instagram adds fund raising feature
Instragram, in response to a rise in activities to respond to social justice causes, has enabled a fund raising feature within the app. The fundraiser lasts for 30 days, but can be renewed. Fundraisers will be reviewed by Instagram before they can be posted. Does fundraising on social media work? Since 2015, 45 million people have raised over $3 billion on Facebook and Instagram according to CNET.
dis-rup-shun: Instragram is taking on GoFundMe, the best known fundraising platform, finding yet another important use case to incorporate into its platform. Despite criticism to the contrary, Facebook and its entities have a finger on the pulse of the population, and seek to ride the wave of people’s growing passion about causes.