Less fighting, more fun: Social’s great un-politicking
Image: Charles Deluvio / Protocol
Good morning! This Thursday, a bill in North Dakota could change the way the App Store works, social platforms are trying desperately to get out of politics, the TikTok deal seems fully dead and @realDonaldTrump is gone for good.
The bill that's scaring Apple right now is SB 2333. Just two pages long, it says a "digital application distribution platform" that does more than $10 million in revenue each year in North Dakota — that's every major app store — cannot:
In essence, the bill demands every platform run like the Mac does. Sure, have your app store, charge 30%, use your payment processing, go wild! But you have to also allow people to install and pay for apps in other ways.
Don't dismiss this offhand. It's significant in and of itself that a bill like this made it to public debate, and it obviously has Apple concerned enough to send Neuenschwander, its manager of user privacy, to testify.
And do expect to hear about this elsewhere. There's a similar bill under consideration in Arizona, SB 1642, which argues for the exact same thing as the North Dakota bill in almost the exact same way. And I'm told there are other laws like these coming sooner rather than later.
Stop me if you've heard this before: Facebook is going to experiment with showing users less politics in their News Feed. It will run tests in Canada, Brazil and Indonesia, then in the U.S. and beyond.
This is an early online trend of a post-Trump world. Facebook and Twitter have both been desperate to show that most people don't want to talk politics on their platforms.
But what counts as politics? Are COVID vaccines politics? Are messages from President Biden or the DOJ politics? (Facebook is exempting all of the above from the de-ranking, at least for now.) For the last four years, practically everything has been politicized and polarized. It's clear that most people want less politics, but it's less clear that they'd all define politics the same way.
The Biden administration has "shelved indefinitely" the Trump White House's plan to force a TikTok sale to an American company. After months of kicking the can down the road, it's now been picked up and thrown out.
But the White House needs to make some decisions quickly. The Trump-era executive order pertaining to Alipay and WeChat goes into effect next week, and the government has until next Thursday to respond to TikTok's lawsuit challenging the executive order against it (though the Journal also reports that the Biden administration has now asked to delay the government's appeal of the injunction resulting from that lawsuit).
One thing we have realized is that COVID-19 has accelerated three transformational trends that already existed before the pandemic, but are now dramatically reshaping healthcare: the concept of a networked healthcare system, the increasing adoption of telehealth, and the idea of virtual care and guidance. At the same time, we have seen consumers becoming much more engaged in their personal health and that of their families.
As crypto mints new millionaires and billionaires, Coinbase's Brian Armstrong said, it could change the world's power structure:
@realDonaldTrump is not coming back to Twitter, the company's CFO Ned Segal said:
Satya Nadella kinda sorta took credit for Slack's success while also burning Apple's policies:
And Slack's Jonathan Prince said, uh, no:
Cisco's Chuck Robbins has a clever idea for hybrid meetings that don't suck:
Facebook's reportedly building a Clubhouse clone, and Twitter's Kayvon Beykpour saw it coming:
Bumble's IPO is today, and it's shaping up to be a big one. Here's everything you need to know.
Meghan DiMuzio is now executive director of the Coalition for App Fairness, and said she plans to "accelerate the next phase of our work."
Andy Ellis is leaving Akamai in March after more than two decades. What's next? He didn't say, but first he's writing a book.
If you want someone to stop livestreaming you, there are crazier things you could do than start playing "Santeria" by Sublime so the video has to be taken down on copyright grounds. That's what one Beverly Hills cop appears to have done, anyway. Vice's story digs into all the odd and technical details, but here's the real rub: The video's still up. Because the craziest move of all is to assume that moderation policies work the way they're supposed to.
Today's Source Code was written by David Pierce, with help from Anna Kramer and Shakeel Hashim. Thoughts, questions, tips? Send them to firstname.lastname@example.org, or our tips line, email@example.com. Enjoy your day; see you tomorrow.