BuzzFeed CEO Talks Roll-Up; Insta Cracks Down On Fake Activity

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Digital Media Roll-Up

In an interview with The New York Times, BuzzFeed CEO Jonah Peretti mused about a possible roll-up digital of digital media companies. The obvious candidates would include BuzzFeed, Refinery29, Vox Media and Group Nine. Benefits could include larger payments from social ad platforms. “If BuzzFeed and five of the other biggest companies were combined into a bigger digital media company, you would probably be able to get paid more money,” Jonah Peretti told the Times. More. Reading between the lines, Recode’s Peter Kafka later tweeted, “Roll-up talk is another way of saying that the would-be buyers for big digital media guys – the tv guys – aren’t buying.”

Searching For Real Love

Instagram will crack down on inflated account metrics by removing fake or third-party generated likes, followers and comments from its platform. The company has built a machine learning tool to identify fake activity and will alert account holders that it has deleted inauthentic content. The announcement is just the beginning of a wider clean-up effort for Instagram. Read the blog post. Unilever CMO Keith Weed, who sparked a rallying cry against influencer marketing fraud in Cannes this year, endorsed the changes. “Dishonest practices like buying fake followers or fake engagement from bots pollute the entire system,” he told Marketing Land. “We should all be encouraged by these steps from Instagram to identify and address this type of activity.” More.

Casting For Pods

Spotify and Pandora both say that podcasts will be critical to their next growth phase. The medium remains fragmented, but its growing popularity creates an opportunity to siphon dollars from the $14 billion broadcast radio market, The Wall Street Journal reports. Podcasts are also a way for the two music streaming giants, which spend about three quarters of their revenue on licensing fees, to expand their profit margins, since podcasts are typically much cheaper to acquire than music. More.

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