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Meta reaches privacy settlement, denies any wrongdoing

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Meta reaches privacy settlement, agreeing to pay $37.5 million in compensation

There are new reports Meta, the parent company of Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp, has reached a $37.5 million privacy settlement.

Filed earlier this week in San Francisco’s Federal Court, the settlement is in response to a class action accusing Facebook of violating both California state law and its own privacy policy.

Meta allegedly collected consumer data despite users shutting off location services on their mobile devices. 

Whilst agreeing to pay, Meta continues to deny any wrongdoing as the deal awaits a judge’s final approval.

In 2018, then-Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg admitted that location data was used to help advertisers reach their target audiences.

Zuckerberg said the data was useful to assist advertisers in serving more targeted promotions to users within a specific geographic area.

While some people find this feature helpful, others have complained that the move is highly invasive.  

Much has changed in the world of user data collection since this lawsuit was first lodged. Apple now allows consumers to turn off the ability for apps, like Facebook, to track activity. While Facebook is also allowing users to clear their history on the app.

Of course, people who have switched off these functions have impeded advertisers’ capability in accurately measuring ad performance.

It remains unclear if Meta has reached this settlement in a bid to make this case to disappear or if it is acknowledgement of former poor practices that have now been rectified.   

Dr Karen Sutherland is a Senior Lecturer at the University of the Sunshine Coast where she designs and delivers social media education and research. Dr Sutherland is also the Co-Founder and Social Media Specialist at Dharana Digital marketing agency focused on helping people working in the health and wellness space.

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How Disney beat Netflix at its own game

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When it comes to streaming, there’s a new sheriff in town.

Disney+ has quickly become a major force in the streaming wars, adding over 14 million new subscribers in its latest quarter. That’s a big jump from the 3 million it had just three months prior.

In comparison, Netflix lost nearly 1 million subscribers in the same period.

So what happened? How did Disney+ overtake Netflix so quickly?

There are a few factors at play.

For one, Disney+ has a lot of content that people want to watch. As well as its acquisition of 21st Century Fox, the service  has access to popular franchises like Star Wars, Marvel, and The Simpsons. That’s a big draw for people who are looking for something to watch.

In addition, Disney+ is much cheaper than Netflix. A subscription to Disney+ costs $6.99 per month, while a Netflix subscription starts at $8.99 per month. For people who are trying to save money, Disney+ is the more appealing option. Though Disney and Netflix have signalled they’re going to push up their prices.

Disney+ has been aggressive in marketing itself as the superior streaming service. The company has run a number of ads that compare its service favorably to Netflix. This has helped convince people to switch to Disney+.

The Disney effect

The Walt Disney Company launched Disney+ on November 12, 2019. The streaming service is available in the United States, Canada, the Netherlands, Australia, New Zealand, and Puerto Rico.

As of the second quarter of 2020, Netflix had nearly 221 million subscribers across 190 countries.

Factbox

What is the market share of Netflix? In the United States, Netflix has a market share of 37%. That means it is the most popular streaming service in the country.

When was Netflix founded? Netflix was founded on August 29, 1997, in Scotts Valley, California.

What type of company is Netflix? Netflix is a publicly-traded company. Its stock is traded on the Nasdaq under the ticker symbol NFLX.

What is the headquarters of Netflix? The headquarters of Netflix is located in Los Gatos, California.

Disney+ facts

Disney is spending $1 billion per year on its streaming service.

What is the market share of Disney+? In the United States, Disney+ has a market share of 24%.

When was Disney+ launched? Disney+ was launched on November 12, 2019.

What type of company is Disney? Disney is a publicly-traded company. Its stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol DIS.

How much does Disney stock cost? As of August 2020, the price of one share of Disney stock is $115.76.

What is the headquarters of Disney? The headquarters of Disney is located in Burbank, California.

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Scientists discover dogs can sniff if you’re stressed

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Russia has begun vaccinating animals against COVID-19

Dog’s truely are our best friends and it turns out they really are in tune to our feelings by experiencing their world through smell

Scientists have discovered that dogs can detect stress, by sniffing our breath and sweat

Four dogs volunteered by their owners – were trained to “choose” one of three scent canisters.

And in more than 650 out of 700 trials, they sniffed a sample of sweat or breath that had been taken from a stressed person.

Dog highly sensitive scent-detection abilities are already used to detect drugs, explosives, and illnesses – so they really are paw-some animals

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Coolio, ‘Gangsta’s Paradise’ rapper, dies at 59

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U.S. rapper and record producer Coolio has died

The musician was visiting a friend when he suddenly passed away, according to reports from his management.

TMZ reports the musician went to the bathroom and never returned.

Paramedics were sent to the scene after reports he entered cardiac arrest. But his cause of death is yet to be confirmed.

But the father of 10 was pronounced dead a short time after.

Coolio was best known for his hit songs Gangsta’s Paradise, Fantastic Voyage, and It’s All The Way Live.

He was aged 59.

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