Digital Summer

Hot! Hot! Hot! It feels like Europe is melting this week. A clear sign that summer has come and so we are switching gears. This will be the last regular Crosswire of the season. In July and August, you can expect a summer edition of Crosswire at the end of each month. In September we are back to normal. But don’t panic. There is plenty to read. I have put together this special book list on Medium for those long summer nights or sunny beach days.

Enjoy this week's selection! 



The cost of ad-free internet: USD 35 per month - Two U.S. Senators have proposed a bill that would require tech platforms to disclose exactly how much data they collect about users, and what each users' data is worth to them per month. Apparently, the internet without ads would cost us all USD 35 a month.

Report: Feedback on Facebook’s Oversight Board. - Facebook’s new independent board to oversee content decisions is being shaped. The platform published a 44-page report summarizing what the company learned from speaking with roughly 900 people and reviewing more than 1,200 public comments about the idea.

A Bloomberg opinion column asks whether the independent oversight board will ever do more than adjudicate a few dozen per year, which would be "immaterial" to Facebook’s scale.


Popular TV shows are leaving Netflix - NBC Universal announced Tuesday that it will be pulling the popular TV show The Office for a staggering USD 500 million. In doing so, it's buying back something the streaming giant can't easily replicate. Shows like The Office and movies like the Marvel films, which will likely all one day be on Disney+, have brand recognition that keeps subscribers on the service.

This week Netflix Chief Reid Hasting joined the
EBU General Assembly in Oslo and said that linear TV still has 50 years to go.

Even more Netflix news. Here is an interesting infographic from Ampere Analysis showing how Amazon's kids' TV catalogue is almost twice the size of Netflix's, with 547 distinct titles compared to Netflix's 283 titles.


RadioPlayer appoints an automotive partnership director - Radioplayer has appointed Laurence Harrisson as their brand new director of Automotive Partnerships. He will be responsible for leading efforts to get hybrid radio interfaces into internet-enabled cars.

Classical music gets lost in the metadata of streaming services - The algorithms of Spotify, Apple and Amazon are carefully engineered to steer listeners to pop hits, but Mozart or Schubert can get lost in the metadata according to this interesting piece by the NYT.

Sonos Report: Better living through listening - Listening is the world’s most versatile drug. That is at least what speaker company Sonos claims in a new report on the relationship between sound and the quality of our life.


You can’t escape marketing in Instagram anymore. - Ads seem to be infiltrating every aspect of Instagram, and will now even be seen the "Explore" feed. The social network has announced it will roll out ads to Explore's photos and videos over the course of the "next few months".

Snapchat releases Friendship report - Snap inc. has this week published a new report which looks at close friendships in the digital age, and how people connect. The report provides a range of interesting insights on how modern relationships are maintained, which paints a picture of some of the key social behaviors of the next generation.


The crisis of creative campaign. - Creativity is not all that matters. A new report presented at the Cannes Lions illustrates how Award-winning creative campaigns are having little or no effective impact because they are chasing short term goals. And in the short term creativity doesn’t sell.


Netflix Hack Day - Netflix detailed some of the hacks coming out of its most recent innovation day on its Tech Blog. Netflix has been holding these kinds of events for its developers, and anyone else with creative ideas, for the last couple of years and the results are worth a look.

This week I got inspiring tips from Grace Zakka, Pascale Labrie and Gianluca Allaria. Thanks a lot! See you all back after the summer break!

Ezra Eeman
Head of Digital Media