Google threatens to close its search engine in Australia as it lobbies against digital news code

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TechCrunch reports: “Google has threatened to close its search engine in Australia — as it dials up its lobbying against draft legislation that is intended to force it to pay news publishers for reuse of their content.”

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Music App Co-Founded by Multi-Platinum US Producer and Ex-Universal Exec Will Pay Users up to $1,000 for Identifying Potential Hits

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Music Business Worldwide reports: “Music startup Djooky, an emerging artist platform, has launched a new feature on its app called HitHunter that promises to pay its users cash prizes for identifying potential hits.”

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Apple’s first VR headset will reportedly be powerful and pricey

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CNET reports: “Apple’s first virtual reality headset will reportedly sport powerful processors, a high-resolution display, a fan and a steep price tag. The VR headset will be considered a niche product and could be “far more expensive” than the $300 to $900 headsets available from rivals, according to a report Thursday from Bloomberg.”

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YouTube launches hashtag landing pages to all users

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TechCrunch reports: “YouTube is embracing the hashtag. The company has been quietly working on a new feature that allows users to better discover content using hashtags — either by clicking on a hashtag on YouTube or by typing in a hashtag link directly.”

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Amazon Web Services’ insights into gaming for 2021

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VentureBeat reports: “No one has a bird’s eye view of the game industry like Amazon. The company’s Amazon Web Services division provides online services for 90% of the industry.”

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Capcom raises forecasts thanks to growing digital sales

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Gamesindustry.biz reports: “Capcom has raised its full-year financial forecasts ahead of next week’s Q3 results report, thanks to high digital sales of its games.”

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Will 2021 Herald a Golden Age of Artist Partnerships for Independent Labels?

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Music Business Worldwide: “While the current COVID-19 pandemic transforms aspects of the “norm” worldwide the recorded music business, which continues to be sustained by streaming income, has remained relatively insulated from any commercial downturn so far.”

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ViacomCBS to Launch Pluto TV in France, Vowing to “Transform” Market

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The Hollywood Reporter reports: “ViacomCBS will launch advertising-supported streaming service Pluto TV in France next month, vowing to “transform” the country’s TV and streaming market.”

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Roku’s Scott Rosenberg Dishes on the WarnerMedia and Quibi Deals

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Variety reports: “2020 may have been a breakout year for Roku, but it’s really just setting the stage for what’s to come next for the upstart streaming company.”

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Facebook and Instagram’s AI-generated image captions now offer far more details

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TechCrunch reports: “Every picture posted to Facebook and Instagram gets a caption generated by an image analysis AI, and that AI just got a lot smarter. The improved system should be a treat for visually impaired users, and may help you find your photos faster in the future.”

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