The Week That Was: the 6 things you need to know

Week 24
The Week That Was: the 6 things you need to know

Top News

More than 200 startups, founders and investment funds signed a manifesto to join forces around European startups. One goal is that Europe should have 10 technology companies each valued at more than Euro 100 billion by 2030. Among signatories are representatives for Springer, the European Commission, BMW, French Government, German Startup Association, Airbus and Blablacar.

The European Court of Justice gave EU member states extended authority to take for instance big tech companies to court for cross border violation privacy rules. An example could be Facebook that has its European operations registered in Ireland. This has until now meant that it has been the privacy watchdog in Dublin investigating cross border leaks of personal data. Now any member state’s privacy authority could take a big tech to court for cross border violation of the EU’s GDPR rules introduced a couple of years ago to increase privacy for EU citizens.

Google announced expansion of business services. Companies will be able to control encryption of their files on Google Drive and prevent Google from unlocking them. The company’s service called Workspace is also available for anyone who wants to upgrade their gmail accounts by subscribing to a package – Workspace Individual – that includes email newsletter functionalities and calendaring. The new subscription services are seen as an attempt to add revenue streams and be less dependent on advertising.

Global advertising will grow 14% to hit USD 657 billion in 2021, a new all-time high, following a decline of -2.5% in 2020. The marketplace will continue to grow in 2022 (+7%), global advertising Magna said. “The acceleration in ecommerce and digital marketing adoption that started during COVID, continues full speed into 2021, fuelling digital advertising spending from consumer brands as well as small and DTC businesses.”

A number of companies pulled their advertising from new British TV channel GB News within the two first days after launch arguing that they want to first know more about its content. Critics had prior to the launch feared that the channel would be right wing and have said it could be UK version of the Murdoch owned US channel Fox News that, at least for some time, was Donald Trump’s favourite. GB News has said the channel will have opinion and debate.

Top Insight

Boosting local journalism is crucial in a modern-day media landscape and “hugely important for democracy”, said Timothy Snyder, history professor at Yale University, speaking at DW Global Media Forum. It’s critical that young people have tangible access to the news that directly affects their lives while growing up – and this requires local reporters writing about the issues that directly affect their community, Snyder stressed, warning that absence of local news could lead to polarization.

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