Technology • Innovation • Publishing — Issue #161


Facebook’s New Camera Glasses Are Dangerously Easy to Use
The company has partnered with Ray-Ban to make a pair of video-capturing Wayfarers. They’re everything you hoped for and feared in smart glasses.

Big Brands Experiment with NFTs, and a look to the Future


Employee Joy!

RT @rishad The most important component of long-term sustainable advantage for any firm is its ability to attract, retain, inspire, and grow talent. Talent needs a)money, b)recognition, c)autonomy, d)connectedness, e) purpose/values and f)growth


Linktree partners with PayPal to allow users globally to accept direct payments

HT @TheTiltNews Linktree, the popular “link in bio” service with more than 16 million users, is partnering with PayPal to expand its recently launched “Commerce Links” tools for direct payment on Linktree globally. The Melbourne-based startup says creators in over 200 countries where PayPal operates can now accept payments through the transaction tools.

Twitter launches Communities, its Facebook Groups and Reddit
Twitter’s new Communities feature is a competitor to Facebook Groups and Reddit, allowing people to create and join private groups based on shared interests.

Twitter is testing big ol’ full-width photos and videos

Twitter is exploring ways to build a more visually immersive experience with its latest test, which brings edge-to-edge tweets to the app on iOS.

Twitter is testing emoji reactions for tweets
Twitter is testing emoji reactions. Users in Turkey will be able to respond to tweets with the “Face with tears of joy” emoji, “Thinking face,” “Clapping hands,” “Crying face,” or a simple “Heart.”

Judge Orders Apple to Loosen App Store Restrictions in Mixed Verdict

Case pitted Steve Jobs’s vision of a walled garden of Apple hardware against Epic co-founder Tim Sweeney’s desire for an open ecosystem. #Apple

Apple Music is using Shazam to solve the streaming industry’s problem with DJ mixes

Apple Music announced that it’s created a process to properly identify and compensate all of the individual creators involved in making a DJ mix.

Amazon to pay full cost of all college tuition, fees and textbooks for U.S. hourly employees
Amazon will offer to pay 100 percent of college tuition for its 750,000 U.S. hourly employees, in an effort to woo workers in a tight job market.

TikTok overtakes YouTube for average watch time in US and UK

Microsoft acquires TakeLessons, an online and in-person tutoring platform, to ramp up its edtech play

Microsoft said in January this year that Teams, its online collaboration platform, was being used by over 100 million students — boosted in no small part by the COVID-19 pandemic and many schools going partly or fully remote. Now, it’s made another acquisition to continue expanding its position in the education market.

Microsoft rolls out personalized news feed

Microsoft is launching a personalized news feed called Microsoft Start, available both as a website and a mobile app. #Microsoft #NewsBusiness

Publishing & Media

The Book Biz Tries to Avoid Supply Chain Disruptions
Shortages of truck drivers and trailers, congestion at ports, and escalating transportation costs have put more pressure on the supply chain than any time in recent memory.

How TikTok Makes Backlist Books into
Books like Colleen Hoover’s 2016 novel ‘It Ends with Us’ are blowing up with BookTok influencers — and seeing huge sales spikes that often send titles to the top of the bestseller lists.

Stephen King Sells ‘Red Screen’ Short Story Online to Benefit ACLU via Humble

Democrats Press Amazon Over Anti-Vax Books

As Amazon’s algorithms allow COVID-19 misinformation to top search results, Rep. Adam Schiff of California and Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts have written to the company about its “misinformation policies and what the company is doing to stop its systems from recommending books and other products linked to falsehoods about the pandemic and vaccines.”

The NYPL Picture Collection Is Leaving Circulation — demonstration planned on September 21 at NYPL’s main branch

HT ⁦@PublishersLunch

Book printer raided in gangmaster investigation
One of Europe’s biggest book printers has become embroiled in a ‘gangmaster’ scandal involving the exploitation and abuse of foreign workers.

Pearson Acquires Workforce AI and Analytics Company Faethm for Business

Audiobook retailer has announced for Business, which allows companies to offer a “curated collection of audiobooks” to employees. In a release, said that they “work with companies to select audiobook options, including bookseller recommendations.” Businesses can offer gift memberships or specific audiobooks to employees.

Win a Personal Message from You Character Joe Goldberg Plus More Prizes in Charitable Book Auction
The second annual Authors for Voices of Color auction is now underway, with exclusive offerings up for grabs from writers like Roxane Gay, Clueless actress Elisa Donovan and many more


November 12th & 13th.

New PLA Survey Illustrates Critical Digital Role Played by Public Libraries
The report, ‘2020 Public Library Technology Survey,’ provides a current, detailed snapshot of how libraries serve as digital equity hubs.

2020 School Librarian of the Year Cicely Lewis Named a Finalist for Million-Dollar Global Teacher
The Georgia high school librarian and Read Woke columnist is one of 50 educators from around the world who are up for the $1 million honor.

Substack plans to spend $30M+ over the next few years to entice popular comic writers using deals that let them keep rights to their own IP

Vox Media Set to Acquire Podcasting Newsletter Hot Pod

Vox Media will acquire Hot Pod, the podcasting news resource founded by Nicholas Quah, in a bid to start potential subscription offerings. #podcasting

Walmart inks deal with Meredith to bring AI-enabled meal planning to shoppers

Walmart today announced it is partnering with major media corporation Meredith to simplify the shopping experience with new AI and commerce offerings. Meredith will launch its first shoppable “bookazine” that pairs recipes with Walmart products

Apple News+ adds 1.25m to US magazine circulations

HT @bosacks #magazines

Marie Claire is ending its US print magazine edition after 27 years, after Hearst sold it to Future in May

JPMorgan Chase is acquiring The Infatuation, a restaurant discovery service that bought Zagat from Google in 2018
The deal is the bank’s latest effort to cater to big spenders who like to travel and dine out.

Australian court rules media liable for Facebook comments

Australia’s highest court made a landmark ruling that media outlets are “publishers” of allegedly defamatory comments posted by third parties on their official Facebook pages.

News collaborative for Black communities

HT @michellemanafy Ten Black newspapers have joined forces to create Word In Black, a platform to “amplify the Black experience by reporting, collecting and sharing stories about real people in communities across our country.”

Michael Jordan Pledges $1 Million to Support UNC’s Ida B. Wells
A $1 million grant from the Jordan Brand’s Black Community Commitment will aid the Ida B. Wells Society for Investigative Reporting.

This news consortium aims to cover rural America from coast to coast
With more than 50 participating newsrooms led by The Daily Yonder and the agribusiness-focused Investigate Midwest, the multi-year effort will be the nonprofit group’s largest collaboration ever.

Low-cost trainings on public records and investigative techniques for local newsrooms, freelancers and students

Gannett launches USA Today Sports+, a digital subscription product with reporting, interactive features, and sports betting content, in seven markets

Resources & Opportunities

#LatinxPitch 9/15 — for

A pitching event for all Latino/Latine/Latinx creators of young people’s literature. LatinxPitch is a kidlit pitching event for creators of children’s literature who belong to the Latinx community. #LatinxPitch

Under the Volcano Fellowships

Critique giveaway — #DVpit

RT @DVpit_ *CRITIQUE GIVEAWAY* To enter to win a critique on your art/illustrations:

1. FOLLOW @DVpit_

2. RT *this* tweet (don’t quote-tweet)

3. REPLY w/ your category+genre

For marginalized #DVpit-hopefuls only! Entry 1pp! Closes Sept 15th @ 4pm ET.

September is Library Card Sign-up

RT How Do #LibrariesEmpower You? There is nothing more empowering than getting your own library card, and September is Library Card Sign-up Month. Get yours, and then #ReadAllTheComics with @comicsplus via your school or public library! #libcomix

FREE virtual event on Influencer Marketing 9/15 12pm

Last chance to sign up for this FREE virtual event on 9/15 from 12–1pm ET with #marketingtips from @AlizaFreud on #InfluencerMarketing at @WMG_NYC.

FREE virtual event w Ghostwriter Michelle Burford 9/23 7pm

Writer and editor Michelle Burford has co-authored ten memoirs and six New York Times best sellers (three of which debuted at #1) including Just As I Am written with legendary actress Cicely Tyson (who tragically passed away on January 28, 2021, two days following publication of her memoir). Michelle’s celebrity collaborations also include books with Alicia Keys, Toni Braxton and Simone Biles (to name just a few). Come hear Michelle at @WMG_NYC’s FREE virtual event 9/23 from 7–8pm ET.

Join WMG for virtual Media Trends panel 9/28 at 12pm

Join @WMG_NYC for a lively virtual panel discussion 9/28 from 12–1pm ET with women leaders from publishing, digital media, and broadcasting about the changing media landscape. Moderator Rachel Deahl, News Director at Publishers Weekly, will be in conversation with Kristen McLean, Executive Director, Business Development at NPD Book and two other panelists about emerging content trends they’re seeing across media industries, how consumers’ interests, needs, and consumption habits have evolved since the onset of the pandemic, and how businesses — large and small — can adapt to meet those needs in innovative ways. Free for WMG Members, $15 for non-members.



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Kathy Sandler

Kathy Sandler

Sr Mgr, Content Applications, Penguin Random House * Innovation * Technology * Publishing * Opinions expressed are my own