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The Drum’s Daily Briefing: Universal Music & TikTok strike chord & Snapchat’s AI makeover


By The Drum Team, Editorial

May 2, 2024 | 6 min read

Our quickfire analysis of the brand, marketing and media stories that might just crop up in your meetings and conversations today.

TikTok interface on mobile phone showing shared video content

UMG’s extensive catalog can be accessed by TikTok’s billion-plus users

UMG and TikTok sign music deal

Universal Music Group (UMG) has struck a new licensing deal with TikTok, allowing its artists’ music back on the platform after a previous contract lapse. This follows UMG’s move to remove its artists’ songs from TikTok in February due to failed negotiations.

The agreement resolves disputes over compensation, granting UMG’s extensive catalog access to TikTok’s billion-plus users. Notably, this deal benefits UMG’s artists and songwriters with improved pay and promotional opportunities.

Additionally, both companies plan to explore new revenue streams through TikTok’s e-commerce features and collaborate on AI development to safeguard music industry economics.

The pact underscores the growing influence of social media platforms in the music industry and the ongoing efforts to ensure fair compensation for artists.

Source: The Wall Street Journal

Snapchat gets an AI makeover

Snapchat is rolling out an array of fresh features, including the long-awaited ability to edit sent messages, correcting those cringe-worthy typos with ease. This update also introduces emoji reactions and map reactions, enhancing communication dynamics. Moreover, a new AI-powered reminders function aims to keep users organized and on track.

The edit message option comes with a five-minute window and is contingent on the recipient not yet opening it, initially accessible to Snapchat Plus subscribers. This mirrors a trend seen in Elon Musk’s Twitter Blue, now X Premium.

Post-sent message editing has become a sought-after feature across messaging platforms, with Meta’s Messenger, Instagram and WhatsApp adopting it recently. Apple integrated it into iOS 16, potentially followed by Google.

Snapchat amplifies its AI capabilities, leveraging My AI chatbot and introducing features like personalized Bitmoji clothing creation and '90s-style AI Lenses. Additionally, users can now send regular emoji reactions and location-based reactions, enhancing interaction. These updates are live, with editable messages for Plus subscribers arriving soon.

Source: The Verge

Netflix axes Basic tier, angering subscribers

Netflix faces backlash as it discontinues its non-ad-supported Basic tier, forcing users into ad-supported plans. Despite promises of cost savings and enhanced features, subscribers in the UK and Canada express frustration and threaten cancellations.

The move, driven by a quest for increased ad revenue, signals Netflix’s prioritization of profits over user satisfaction.

With previous controversies like password sharing crackdowns and frequent price hikes, the streaming giant risks alienating its loyal fanbase.

While executives anticipate financial gains, the decision underscores a growing trend of consumer distrust. As competitors vie for market dominance, Netflix must tread carefully to maintain its position as the premier streaming platform.

Source: Tech Radar

Roblox to show ads to users aged 13+

Roblox is opening its video ad offerings to all advertisers, including Warner Bros Pictures and Walmart. Ads will target users aged 13 and up, comprising over half of its 71.5 million daily active users, with the platform emphasizing its ability to engage Gen Z consumers and drive global awareness

New features include genre targeting and brand suitability controls. Ad publishers must meet specific requirements for participation. Brands can leverage these controls in the Ads Manager to choose suitable content.

Later in 2024, a cost-per-completed views model will be available, along with IAS’s viewability and IVT measurement products.

Source: Variety

Food giants accused of manipulating kids with packaging

A report by Bite Back, which is affiliated with celebrity chef Jamie Oliver, accuses major food companies of using colorful packaging and cartoon characters to manipulate children into craving unhealthy snacks.

The study analyzed 262 foods with “colorful, child-appealing wrappers” and deemed 78% as unhealthy due to high fat, salt or sugar content. Bite Back singled out brands including Kinder Surprise, M&Ms and Monster Munch Giants.

Mondelez International, Ferrero, Mars, PepsiCo and Kellogg’s were highlighted for marketing numerous unhealthy products to kids.

James Toop of Bite Back is urging government intervention, emphasizing the need to curb these tactics. However, companies including Mondelez refute the claims, stating adherence to marketing regulations and targeting adults.

Amid growing concerns about childhood obesity, calls for stricter regulations on food packaging and advertising intensify, with some suggesting a 9pm watershed on advertising such products. The debate underscores the ongoing battle between health advocates and food industry interests.

Source: The Guardian

Bulgaria votes for sweeping gambling advertising ban

Bulgaria’s government has approved a bill banning almost all gambling advertising, which affects online, TV, radio, print, and building displays.

The bill also mandates responsible gambling messages in ads, with penalties for non-compliance up to 50,000 Bulgarian Lev ($27,000). The Council for Electronic Media will monitor adherence and violators will be reported to the Bulgarian National Revenue Agency.

Amendments to gambling law include raising slot machine license capital requirements and limiting gambling to areas with populations over 10,000. Licensees face a new “socially responsible fee” benefiting addiction treatment.

These changes reflect Bulgaria’s evolving gambling market, with recent efforts to combat money laundering and regulate self-exclusion. This move parallels Romania’s similar legislative action, signaling broader shifts in Eastern European gambling regulation.

Source: iGB

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