News digest 30.11.2020

Was there a Google search update?

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Starting around Monday, November 23rd, there have been some signals that Google was pushing out another Google search algorithm ranking update. But the chatter is almost non-existent while some of the tools show big changes. Google has not confirmed any search update release prior to Thanksgiving.

Facebook's Libra currency could debut in a limited form early next year

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Facebook controversial Libra cryptocurrency could launch as early as January, according to the Financial Times, but it appears the project has once again scaled back its ambitions. When the Libra Association, the consortium Facebook co-founded to oversee the project, shared its latest plans in April, it said its goal was to create multiple digital “stablecoins” of fiat currencies such as the dollar, euro and pound.

Instagram adds keyword search in addition to profiles and tags

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Instagram has announced an update to its search functionality which will give users the capacity to search for specific keywords, as opposed to being limited to profiles, hashtags and locations.
Up till now, when you've gone searching for something on Instagram, your results have been limited to names, user names, locations and hashtags. But now you'll now be able to tap on specific search terms and Instagram will show you all the posts that include those exact words.

Bitcoin plunges by nearly $3,000 after closing in on its all-time record

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The latest tumble comes as many predicted the cryptocurrency would soon hit an all-time high of $20,000.
Bitcoin has been on a tear in 2020, skyrocketing over 150%.
Crypto enthusiasts have credited that to unprecedented monetary and fiscal stimulus in response to the Covid-19 crisis, as well as interest from big-name investors such as Paul Tudor Jones and Stanley Druckenmiller.

Faked livestream data, proptech struggles: Retailheads

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Falsified data scandals involving Chinese online celebrities shined light on the legitimacy of livestream metrics. Reports that Chinese online housing companies are nearing insolvency are on the rise. Chinese e-commerce giants meanwhile have expanded the Singles Day promotion across their ecosystems to include local services and online travel.

U.S. states prepare second antitrust lawsuit against Google for December

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A bipartisan group of U.S. states plans to file an antitrust lawsuit against Google as early as next month, according to two people briefed on the matter, potentially beating a more widely anticipated lawsuit from a different group of states led by Texas.

AliExpress and 42 more Chinese apps are now banned in India

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The Indian government has banned 43 more apps of Chinese origin.
The latest apps to have been banned in the country include AliExpress, TaoBao Live, and CamCard.
They have been banned for "engaging in activities prejudiced to the sovereignty and integrity" of the country.

Google testing paid crowdsourcing service ‘Task Mate’ in India

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The Google Opinion Rewards app has long allowed users to answer questions and surveys in exchange for Play Store credits. Google is now trialing “Task Mate” in India to “earn money doing simple tasks on your smartphone.”
In “early access,” Task Mate is currently “limited to selected testers” through a referral code system. At a high-level, the app (via Reddit) lets you “find tasks nearby,” “complete a task to begin earning,” and then “cash out your earnings.” The latter is done by registering an e-wallet account or with the in-app payment partner.

State, federal antitrust lawsuits likely to challenge Facebook for buying rivals and weaponizing data

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State and federal investigators are preparing to bring antitrust charges against Facebook that will challenge the tech giant’s acquisition of two rivals, Instagram and WhatsApp, alleging that the deals helped create an anti-competitive social networking juggernaut that has left users with few quality alternatives.
The charges form a critical part of what could be a wide-ranging legal salvo, according to three people with knowledge of the matter, ultimately threatening to saddle Facebook with its toughest regulatory challenge in its nearly 17-year history.

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