GM folks! Let us kick off today’s edition with a notice - we packed our bags and moved from Substack to Beehiiv*. It’s not that the grass is greener here, but we believe that Beehiiv offers features we can grow faster with. We'll keep sending you the great content you know on Friday.
Thanks for staying with us & enjoy the read! 🧡💚
*if you haven’t noticed anything, that’s perfect! (don’t blame April 20)
💥 What’s buzzin’ in marketing?
💡 Google revealed the results of the recent interest-based audience (IBA) targeting experiment. The privacy-first targeting performed slightly worse than cookies. Advertisers using Privacy Sandbox targeting saw a 2-7% decrease in spending and a 1-3% drop in conversions per dollar. Why is this relevant? Because by the end of 2024, Google will deprecate 3rd party cookies in Chrome, which will impact almost all sorts of digital campaigns. Worth to know if we should worry or not.
💡 Facebook is testing a new "Advanced Stories" feature that uses image recognition AI to generate stories from users' uploaded content. The feature encourages user engagement with stories, even though the automatically created content might feel less natural. The real value of Facebook’s in-app experience comes from engaging with friends and family, but the AI experiment is worth a try, given the momentum.
💡 Twitter introduced long-form Tweets to Blue subscribers. The Tweet character limit is 10,000. Super Follows are now “Subscriptions” (available in the US only), and Twitter will not cut on fees for the next 12 months. The company has also updated its enforcement rules to add labels to Tweets identified as potentially violating its policies. This will let all of us know if (and why) Twitter limited their visibility.
💡 Instagram increased the number of links you can add to your profile to five. Bye-bye, Linktree. Besides, the platform improved the Reels editing experience by unifying the editing screen to combine video clips, audio, stickers, and text. Also, Instagram spoils Reels creators with two new metrics - total watch time and average watch time. Last but not least - Instagram will roll out the Gifts feature to more countries!
🏝 Coinbase is ready to evacuate
Coinbase has received a license from the Bermuda Monetary Authority to operate as a regulated digital asset business in the country. The license allows Coinbase to launch an offshore derivatives exchange, potentially offering perpetual swaps unavailable in the US.
The exchange could launch next week, enabling Coinbase to compete more directly with Binance. Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong hinted that the company might leave the US if regulatory clarity doesn't improve.
The company is exploring other crypto-friendly jurisdictions, including Hong Kong, Dubai, and Singapore. Coinbase also announced the launch of a full crypto experience in Brazil and plans to expand into the Canadian market.
🕵️♀️ Taylor Swift better at due diligence than VCs
FTX and Taylor Swift were negotiating a $100 million sponsorship deal, including NFT concert tickets. The exchange sought a “light degree of endorsement” from Swift on social media, but the singer never even considered such an option.
SBF initially favored the deal but was persuaded against it by former FTX US president Brett Harrison. 16 FTX celebrity brand ambassadors, including Tom Brady and Shaquille O'Neal, could be liable for up to $5 billion in damages in a class-action lawsuit.
Twitter users highlighted that Swift conducted better due diligence than VC firms investing in FTX.
🍿How the SEC regulates the crypto industry
Gary Gensler testified in front of the House Financial Services Committee on how SEC was approaching crypto companies hoping to operate in the U.S. Here’s a wrap-up of the ~ 3-hour hearing for our beloved readers:
Gensler believes existing traditional finance rules can regulate crypto, but many disagree due to unclear guidelines.
He dodged questions on whether ETH is a security, despite claiming the crypto industry has enough clarity for compliance.
SEC Chair supports a new regulatory framework for stablecoins, provided the SEC/CFTC can still enforce against fraud.
Congressman Warren Davidson introduced a bill to remove Gensler as SEC chairman, citing failures to protect investors.
Gensler claimed AI is the most transformative technology of our time, not crypto, raising questions about his priorities.
Joshua Ashley Klayman argued that Gensler not blurting out that ether or "everything-but-bitcoin" was a security was actually a win for the industry. "This was the best we could possibly hope for, and it gives some cover to not just ETH but also other cryptocurrencies", she said.
🤔 The European version of USDC
A new euro-pegged stablecoin has faced criticism for restricting peer-to-peer transactions. The Ethereum-based stablecoin is only available to qualified institutional clients, and its ERC-20 transfers require approval by a centralized registrar before processing.
Crypto community members have mocked the code and called it inefficient, while others have described it as the "worst code" they've ever seen. Some, however, argue that traditional financial firms will take "baby steps" into blockchain and digital assets.
The stablecoin released by Societe Generale-Forge aims to bridge the gap between traditional capital markets and the digital assets ecosystem.
👾 OUR PICKS ON ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE
👾 Stability AI open-sourced a suite of generative AI models to compete with OpenAI. The model is called StableLM and is available in “alpha” on GitHub and Hugging Face. It’s getting crowdy here, but hopefully, the competition triggers a “harmless” version of innovation 👀
👾 Google will merge its two AI research labs, Google Brain and DeepMind, into one unit called DeepMind. The aim is to unite the teams working on Gemini, a generative AI software, and overtake OpenAI in the AI race. DeepMind’s CEO believes with this move they “can get to that future faster”.
👾 Snapchat is marking its AI-powered chatbot feature available for all the app’s users. This move is huge because it brings AI to additional 363 million people.
🔥 HOT BITS & BITES
Intel stopped manufacturing Bitcoin-mining chips 1 year after launch
Coinpaper compared the best Ethereum staking platforms
Microsoft is about to add more ads to Windows 11 Start menu
Google will let advertisers use AI to create ad campaigns
SEC sued Bittrex for acting as an unregistered securities broker-dealer
The Metadata newsletter explains all about Nike's upcoming Air Force 1 NFT drop
Microsoft removes Twitter from its social media management platform
Family of F1 legend Michael Schumacher plans legal action over fake AI interview
BuzzFeed shuts down its BuzzFeed News division due to mismanagement
Russia allows cryptocurrency to evade international sanctions
🏖 FUN FACT
💡 Did you know that Bitcoin has its own football team? It’s called Real Bedford Football Club, and it just won the United Kingdom’s South Midlands League for the 2023 season.
😜 MEME OF THE WEEK
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