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    Snap CEO isn’t expecting much from Facebook antitrust investigations

    news.movim.eu / TechCrunch – Friday, 4 October - 19:42

Facebook’s relentless blatant feature copy of Snapchat have been seen as one of the chief examples of the company’s competitive overreach, but Snap CEO Evan Spiegel isn’t sure whether antitrust activity from the government is going to change the company’s near-term prospects of competing with Instagram.

“I mean the history of antitrust would basically say that these investigations last like seven to ten years or something like that and that basically nothing happens,” Spiegel said onstage at TechCrunch Disrupt SF. “I think a lot can change in the seven to ten years that this process will take.”

Though Spiegel didn’t seem to have the most faith in the process giving Snap a more level playing field to take on Facebook, he did say there were clear public concerns with how Facebook was responding to competition in the market.

“The thing that everyone’s concerned about is like is that they’ve seen that competition has been what has motivated Facebook to make those changes over time,” Spiegel said onstage. “So, if you look at Snapchat, the inventions that we create around ephemerality, around privacy, those have really motivated Facebook to dramatically change their product offering in order to compete.”

Whether Facebook was specifically suppressing Snapchat content, Spiegel said, “It’s hard to say and I you know I’d probably be stupid to talk about it here.”

“I think what everyone is concerned about is what they would characterize as anti competitive practices so for example, you know, people upload snaps they create on Snapchat to Instagram, all the time, and then Instagram suppresses you know the Snapchat hashtag or they suppress people’s ability to post snap codes as their profile picture or suppress their ability to link to Snapchat on their profile. And that’s an example of anti-competitive behavior.”

Spiegel also confirmed that the company had put together a list of some of Facebook’s competitive moments called Project Voldemort, noting that the list had been started several years ago. The initiative’s existence was first reported by The Wall Street Journal .

“I didn’t make it, our legal team put it together,” Spiegel said. “I think just because they kept hearing from our partners all of these things that Facebook was doing and it was actually so many that people couldn’t actually remember them all so they started writing them down.”

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    Snapchat reportedly has “Project Voldemort” dossier on Facebook’s bad behavior

    news.movim.eu / ArsTechnica – Monday, 23 September - 18:09

Mark Zuckerberg testifying before Congress in April, 2018.

Enlarge / Mark Zuckerberg testifying before Congress in April, 2018. (credit: Bloomberg | Getty Images )

Facebook is only 15 years old, yet in that time it has become the world's dominant social media platform, boasting more than 2.4 billion users. It has also become the world's second-largest digital advertising platform, effectively the runner-up in a worldwide duopoly dominated by Google. Now, it is under a baker's dozen of investigations alleging that it rose to the top by using unfair, anticompetitive tactics—and at least one competitor kept records.

Snap, parent company of Snapchat, kept a dossier "for years" detailing Facebook's attempts to thwart it, sources told The Wall Street Journal . The file, dubbed "Project Voldemort" after the just-doesn't-know-when-to-stay-dead villain of Harry Potter fame, "chronicled Facebook's moves that threatened to undermine Snap's business."

According to the WSJ, Snap's legal team recorded instances where Facebook discouraged prominent social media influencers with a presence on multiple platforms from mentioning Snap on their Instagram accounts. Snap executives also suspected Facebook was suppressing content that originated on Snap from trending on Instagram, when such content was shared there.

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    Startup growth hacks, high-frequency trading, startup security, privacy, and Adobe

    news.movim.eu / TechCrunch – Wednesday, 18 September - 17:35

Full Disrupt SF agenda posted

We have an amazing slate of speakers stopping by TechCrunch Disrupt SF this year, including two full days scheduled for the debut of our Extra Crunch stage, which will focus on how founders can overcome the challenges they face through discussions of tactics with some of the most successful founders and leaders in our industry.

Want to learn how to raise your first dollars with Russ Heddleston at DocSend ? How to get into Y Combinator with YC CEO Michael Siebel ? How to iterate your product with the chief product officers of Uber , Tinder , Okta , and Instagram ? How to evaluate talent with Ray Dalio ? These and almost two dozen more panels are waiting for attendees on the EC stage.

Be sure to grab your tickets soon . And if you are an annual EC subscriber, be sure to use your 20% membership discount by emailing extracrunch@techcrunch.com .

How to get your ads working, and whether PR is worth it

Growth expert Julian Shapiro of BellCurve.com launched a new series of articles for Extra Crunch members on how to grow your startup using battle-tested growth hacks and techniques from heads of growth across Silicon Valley. His first piece came out on Friday on how to work with influencers , and now in this second edition, he investigates advertising and how to evaluate the value of PR firms .

How to make Snapchat ads profitable

Based on insights from Tim Chard .

  • Snap has niche audiences you’ll want to take advantage of. Examples include “people with digestive issues.” Facebook doesn’t have that. Plus, ad clicks on Snap can be cheap ($0.30 USD isn’t uncommon).
  • However, Snap traffic typically converts poorly once it arrives on your site or app.
  • Here’s a technique to mitigate that: cross-target your Snap traffic. Meaning, use unique UTM tags on your Snap ad links. Then, in Facebook/Instagram, detect that unique UTM to create a custom audience of Snap visitors. Finally, retarget those visitors with FB/IG ads, which tend to convert much better than Snap.

How to get people to open your emails

In Julian’s third edition of the Growth Report , he offers even more tips on how to increase open rates, whether you should use Bing Ads(!), and whether and how to handle multi-touch attribution.

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    Snapchat is adding in a 3D Camera Mode, the latest salvo in its feature race with Instagram

    news.movim.eu / TechCrunch – Tuesday, 17 September - 12:00

The newest version of Snap’s Spectacles already has a 3D feature that lets you see the world with immersive filter effects , and now the company’s flagship app Snapchat is levelling up. Today the company announced a new 3D Camera Mode that will let users make and share images with diorama-like depth effects that move when you tilt your phone.

The 3D Camera Mode is available as of today for those using the iPhone X and above with an update of the Snapchat app, where the feature can be accessed via the camera mode, using the drop-down menu on the right. The pictures can also be viewed (but not created) on older and other phone models (including Android) as well.

Alongside the 3D Camera Mode, those creating pictures will also, naturally, be supplied with a new library of 3D effects, lenses and filters; and after you are finished making the images, you can also save them to your camera roll to use elsewhere as well.

The move into 3D is the latest salvo for Snapchat in what has been a long-term feature battle with Facebook, and specifically Instagram . We have long documented the history of how Snapchat has led the charge with new concepts in photo art on its app — from the very basic aspect of ephemeral images, through to the emergence of lenses and filters, and stories to build narratives of Snaps and videos — only to see Instagram (and to a lesser extent, Facebook itself) follow suit with the similar features.

The feature-copy situation is particularly a tough one for Snapchat, which still trails Instagram in overall users and once saw its growth slow massively after its rival implemented Stories. Snapchat most recently reported 203 million daily active users , while Instagram currently says its DAUs are over 500 million .

Lenses and photo effects overall still have a long way to go, though — not least because currently some 70% the company’s daily users turn to lenses to spice up their pictures, pointing to a very sticky feature that helps keep them on Snapchat overall. So Snapchat’s push to keep innovating (even if it gets copied) is commendable.

And in the moving target that is consumer taste, that model is likely to also get changed up with more recent competitive developments: specifically it will be worth watching how and if the rise of the popular music-based TikTok app will impact what features we see on these two older rivals.

Despite all that, ironically, with 3D, Facebook was actually ahead of the game, launching AI-based 3D images back in October 2018 . Up to now, it’s never extended that feature to Instagram. However, with Snapchat getting in on the action, I wouldn’t be surprised to see 3D show up on Insta, too.

To be clear, the 3D feature’s reliance on models of the iPhone X and newer cuts more legacy models of the iPhone out as a matter of necessity, since they are made using image and depth data that can be collected on the iPhone X’s front-facing lens.

On the other hand, you mind find it a strange oversight that the same feature is not showing up on its Android app — not least given that there are a fair number of high-end Android devices that can capture the same types of depth and other image data as the higher models of the iPhone.

Snapchat has had a history with Android. While it is a popular platform for mobile apps overall, at one point Snap had to redesign its Snapchat Android app because it was so slow and buggy , leading to plummeting users. Eventually it clawed some of that back , but it seems that for now, enough of its biggest users are on iOS that Snap continues to prioritise it when it comes to new features. It will be worth watching to see how long it takes Snap to extend this feature to Android. (We are asking.)

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    How to get your ads working, and whether PR is worth it

    news.movim.eu / TechCrunch – Saturday, 14 September - 19:00

We’ve aggregated the world’s best growth marketers into one community. Twice a month, we ask them to share their most effective growth tactics, and we compile them into this Growth Report .

This is how you’re going stay up-to-date on growth marketing tactics — with advice you can’t get elsewhere.

Our community consists of 600 startup founders paired with VP’s of growth from later-stage companies. We have 300 YC founders plus senior marketers from companies including Medium, Docker, Invision, Intuit, Pinterest, Discord, Webflow, Lambda School, Perfect Keto, Typeform, Modern Fertility, Segment, Udemy, Puma, Cameo, and Ritual.

You can participate in our community by joining Demand Curve’s marketing webinars , Slack group , or marketing training program . See past growth reports here .

Without further ado, onto the advice.


How to get customer testimonials from hard-to-reach executives

Based on insights from Guillaume Cabane .

A customer testimonial from a well-known executive may be the social proof that improves conversion rates on your landing pages or in sales collateral. But executives of reputable companies are generally busy and difficult to reach.

Here’s how to get the testimonial:

  • Contract with a freelance journalist who’s written for a reputable publication like the New York Times.
  • Reach out to your executive customers with something like “Hey, we have a journalist who has previously written for NYT who’s interested in speaking to a few of our customers for a piece. Do you have 15 minutes for a quick call?”
  • For $200 in freelancer time, you get a testimonial you can use (in the words you want) from a reputable executive. Be sure to figure out some way to make it worth the executive’s time.

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    Spotify users can now share music and podcasts to Snapchat

    news.movim.eu / TechCrunch – Monday, 9 September - 13:46

Spotify users can now share their favorite music and podcasts with friends on Snapchat, the company announced this morning, with added support for sharing a song, playlist, artist profile, or podcast either directly to your friends on Snapchat or to your Snapchat Story.

Snapchat is now one of several destinations that Spotify users can share to, along with WhatsApp, Messages, Messenger, Twitter, Instagram Stories, and as of just last week, Facebook Stories.

Using the new feature is same as with any other sharing option — you tap the three-dot share menu in the top right of the app’s interface, and choose Snapchat from the dropdown list. Snapchat will open with a new Snap and the full album art included. You can then edit and send the Snap as usual.

Recipients of your Snap will be able to tap the context card to listen to the music or podcast you’ve shared.

In addition to simply sharing music with friends, the feature will also make it possible for Spotify artists and their teams to promote their music to Snapcat’s 203 million daily users — most of who are well-within the coveted teen to young adult demographic that Spotify’s artists are hoping to reach.

The feature itself is powered by Snap’s Creative Kit (a part of Snap Kit ), which lets users share media from a developer’s app or website.

Spotify is now one of over 200 apps that have integrated with Snap Kit following the June 2018 debut of the platform , which aims to offer a more private alternative to Facebook. In many cases, however, support for Snapchat is being added to other apps and sites alongside their existing support for Facebook and Instagram — as in the case here.

The expansion to Spotify’s sharing feature comes at a time when the streamer is looking for growth — especially in light of growing competition from rivals like Amazon Music and Apple Music. The former benefits from integrations with Prime and Alexa while the latter from its preinstallation on Apple devices. (And possibly a new bundle with Apple TV+, as we’ll find out tomorrow at Apple’s iPhone event.)

Spotify, meanwhile, notably missed its user estimates in its Q2 2019 earnings , with 8 million new subscribers in the quarter instead of the expected 8.5 million. With expanded social sharing options, it hopes to reach millions more users who may later convert to paying customers.

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    Movim 0.15 – Donati

    Timothée Jaussoin – pubsub.movim.eu / Movim – Sunday, 28 July - 12:59

After months of work, Movim 0.15 is finally out!

This version was planned as a 0.14.2 but was finally retagged as a major release regarding the number of changes, improvements and new features introduced. This #release note will also sum up the changes introduced in the minor 0.14.1 version.

So what's new in Movim?

User features

Local nicknames

In the configuration panel you can now set a local nickname, this allows you to shorten the identifier you are using on your current pod and gives you a nice looking url for your blog (https://nl.movim.eu/?blog/edhelas%40movim.eu/ becomes https://nl.movim.eu/?blog/edhelas).

Chats reactions

In one-to-one chats and chatrooms you can add and remove #reactions to your contacts messages. A first implementation was using the Message Attaching XMPP extension. During the Lyon XMPP Sprint, the feature was refactored to implement the incoming XEP - Message Reactions. During this sprint we also worked with the #Dino and #Poezio developers to make the feature fully compatible with their clients.

Chat reactions

Publication sharing

You can now easily share any article found in Movim inside a conversation by clicking on the send button just bellow the article.

This uses the References XMPP extension.

Publication sharing

Snap!

Do you want to quickly snap a picture and directly send it to a friend in a discussion or in an article? The new #Snap feature allows you to do that from any devices. Switch between your different cameras, shoot and send. It's that easy!

The Android application has been updated as well to integrate this feature properly.

Small improvements

  • You can now slide a one to one discussion to close it quickly, just like the Conversations client allows you to.
  • Search navigation has been improved, there is no page reload anymore to open a new discussion from the Search panel.
  • The Community page was fully redesigned to be snappier and propose contents that might interest you.
  • The UI now handles small disconnections way better . The conversations are not fully reloaded anymore when the connection is brought back.
  • In the configuration you can now define the Chat page as the default one to open when launching Movim, this is quite useful on mobile.

Fixes, fixes, many fixes

Lots of small things were fixed here and there.

  • The chat notifications counter was fully refactored to prevent some counter issues, each message is now independently checked as read (or not) in the database
  • The composing/paused chat state are now handled more properly in Movim. Those states are also displayed during chatrooms discussions. This fixes a 3 years old ticket.
  • Websockets are now reconnected properly if the browser is doing some intensive throttling, this was especially the case on Chrome on mobile devices.

Architecture and technical changes

From ZeroMQ to Websockets

One of the biggest changes technically wise was the replacement of #ZeroMQ sockets with WebSockets. This technology was used internally for the inter-processes communications. In the end this replacement allows us to become independent from the php-zmq library without any noticeable performance impact.

This simplifies even more the deployment of Movim and helps with the packaging of the project.

New base web server directory

For the administrators, please notice that the main file, index.php is not at the root of the project anymore but in the public/ directory (as well as many other files). These small changes allow the Web server to expose only the public files without extra configuration. So please point your root repository to that public subfolder.

This change was about securing the basic setup by default .

SQLite support removed

The #SQLite support, introduced in the version 0.14, has been removed for now. We had lots of issues to maintain consistency and fix our migrations for that specific database.

Some work has been done on the Eloquent library to fix some of those migrations issues upstream but it is too early to have something sufficient to bring back SQLite support in Movim.

You can still fully use Movim with #MySQL and #PostgreSQL.

What's next?

Movim has now reached a stable state, both UX/UI wise as architecturally wise.

There is still a lot of improvements to do, especially regarding the integration between the social network part and the chat part. Plus, we are always interested to hear about new ideas or improvement suggestions!

For the 0.16 version we are planning to improve video-conferencing and bring it properly for the mobile devices. Some work is also planned to improve the Communities navigation.

We need your help

To continue developing and hosting our infrastructure and to support the project we would be really pleased to cover our monthly expenses, it's not much.

We already have a few hundreds users connected daily on our main servers. If each of them could give a few euros per month it would easily allow us to reach that goal.

You can help us by giving monthly on our official Patreon page or by using Paypal.

  • movim/movim

    Movim - Decentralized social platform. Contribute to movim/movim development by creating an account on GitHub.

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    9 Like

    Tom Teichler , Marzanna , Odysseus Libre , debacle , m4rk , Nicolas Vérité , Adrien Dorsaz , U , Stanislav Nikitin

  • 1 Comments

  • person

    26 August Guillaume

    Kudos on making an effort on the dependency and the ease of deployment.
    Got a bit surprised with public/ directory during the a manual upgrade.


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    You can now quickly take pictures in Movim and publish them in an article. I'll also add the feature soon in the Chat. 😛 #movim #feature #HTML5 #camera

    people Timothée Jaussoin 19 June

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    7 Like

    fish , Tom Teichler , Marzanna , debacle , Nicolas Vérité , 88brazy , oscar

  • 2 Comments

  • 22 June fish

    What does it mean?

  • 22 June Timothée Jaussoin

    Check the original article. It's a feature added to Movim that allows you to trigger your device webcam/camera to shoot quick pictures and publish them in the post/discussion :)