The ethics of internet culture: a conversation with Taylor Lorenz

Taylor Lorenz was in high demand this week. As a prolific journalist at The Atlantic and about-to-be member of Harvard’s prestigious Nieman Fellowship for journalism, that’s perhaps not surprising. Nor was this the first time she’s had a bit of a moment: Lorenz has already served as an in-house expert on social media and the […]

Facebook’s AI couldn’t spot mass murder

Facebook has given another update on measures it took and what more it’s doing in the wake of the livestreamed video of a gun massacre by a far right terrorist who killed 50 people in two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand. Earlier this week the company said the video of the slayings had been viewed […]

PicsArt hits 130 million MAUs as Chinese flock to its photo-editing app

If you’re like me, who isn’t big on social media, you’d think that the image filters that come inside most apps will do the job. But for many others, especially the younger crowd, making their photos stand out is a huge deal. The demand is big enough that PicsArt, a rival to filtering companies VSCO […]

Facebook admits it stored ‘hundreds of millions’ of account passwords in plaintext

Flip the “days since last Facebook security incident” back to zero. Facebook confirmed Thursday in a blog post, prompted by a report by cybersecurity reporter Brian Krebs, that it stored “hundreds of millions” of account passwords in plaintext for years. The discovery was made in January, said Facebook’s Pedro Canahuati, as part of a routine […]

Slowdown or not, China’s luxury goods still seeing high-end growth

Despite well-documented concerns over an economic slowdown in China, the country’s luxury goods market is still seeing opulent growth according to a new study. Behind secular and demographic tailwinds, the luxury sector is set to continue its torrid expansion in the face of volatility as it’s quickly becoming a defensive economic crown jewel. Using proprietary […]

PicsArt hits 130 million MAUs as Chinese flock to its photo editing app

If you’re like me, who isn’t big on social media, you’d think that the image filters that come inside most apps will do the job. But for many others, especially the younger crowd, making their photos stand out is a huge deal. The demand is big enough that PicsArt, a rival to filtering companies VSCO […]

Morphin instantly Deepfakes your face into GIFs

Want to star in your favorite memes and movie scenes? Upload a selfie to Morphin, choose your favorite GIF and your face is grafted in to create a personalized copy you can share anywhere. Become Tony Stark as he suits up like Iron Man. Drop the mic like Obama, dance like Drake or slap your […]

Patreon ups its revenue cut, but grandfathers in old creators

Patreon couldn’t survive charging all creators just a 5 percent rake on the monthly subscriptions they earn from fans while building commerce tools like CRMs and merchandise to try to stay ahead of Twitch, YouTube and Google. But it also didn’t want to screw all its loyal early creators. So today, Patreon is overhauling its […]

Snap is under NDA with UK Home Office discussing how to centralize age checks online

Snap is under NDA with the UK’s Home Office as part of a working group tasked with coming up with more robust age verification technology that’s able to robustly identify children online. The detail emerged during a parliamentary committee hearing as MPs in the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) questioned Stephen Collins, […]

Twitter cracks down on API abuse, will charge B2B devs

To prevent its own Cambridge Analytica moment and make sure it’s getting paid for its data, Twitter will audit developers using its APIs. Starting June 19th, Twitter will require developers of any app that calls recent tweets from or mentions a user more than 100,000 times per day to submit their app for review. If […]

Instagram launches shopping checkout, charging sellers a fee

Instagram is opening a whole new revenue stream. Now the 130 million people who tap Instagram’s product tags on shopping posts will be able to buy those items without leaving the app thanks to stored payment info. “Checkout with Instagram” launches today in the US with more than 20 top brands including Adidas, Kylie Cosmetics, […]

misterb&b hits the equity crowdfunding trail to expand into hotels

Homosexuality is illegal in a third of the planet, and in eight countries, it is punishable by death. In the febrile atmosphere of today’s politics, hate crime incidents in the US increased by 17% between 2016 to 2017, according to the FBI. Over 20 of those incidents were crimes against an individual’s sexual-orientation — the […]

YC-backed Basement is a social network for close friends only

The past few years have been a bit of a dark age for budding social media startups. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snap and messenger apps took up all the time of their users, leaving little room for yet another social media platform. But the tide is shifting. Privacy scandals have shaken some users’ faith in giants […]