I’m a little behind on my reading but never behind on my round-up. So, on to whatever stood out to me the most from this week’s reading sessions.

Google Plans to Make YouTube a Major Shopping Destination

I have to admit that such a plan, if it comes to fruition (and Google actually sticks to it), really does make sense from the company’s perspective. The opportunities here are as vast as they are obvious. Google has been trying its hand with online sales for a while and it seems this newer experiment will be leveraging Shopify, a platform that more often than not seems like the only one that can offer a competitive alternative to Amazon’s marketplace.

At the same time, I can’t help but be wary of a possible future with YouTube as a marketplace for physical goods etc. It might be great at it but what could that mean for content creators going forward? They’re trying to sell some kind of product as it is. What will a typical influencer content turn out to be if YouTube does such a pivot?

But, hey, Google can always change plans 20 times within the next 5 years so maybe there’s nothing to be weary of, right?

Broadcom settles EU competition investigation with sales commitments

In the entire world excluding China, Broadcom may not require any customer to take more than 50 percent of its supply from the company.

In case you haven’t noticed, I love reminding people that the game maybe afoot but it’s prudent to keep in mind how large the game table is. We often hear of the European Commission launching investigations and fining companies but what we don’t hear all too often is using its weight in an attempt to affect broader change, however small. You can read more about the ridiculous practices Broadcom had been getting away with but as far as I see it, the fact that the Commission compels a multi-national not just to do business in a certain way within its jurisdiction but also outside of it is the most important takeaway.

Both as a sign of things to come and as a reminder that decisions being made halfway around the world (depending on where you’re reading this from) can and will have broader affect, whether they’re designed to do so or not. Regulators should also keep this in mind and try to, I don’t know, work together. Instead of pretending they’ve been working together. In an interconnected world it’s getting tougher and tougher to pretend the butterfly effect is more theory than reality.

Publishers worry as ebooks fly off libraries’ virtual shelves

Last year, Macmillan took an additional step, limiting each library system to only a single digital copy of a new title—at half its usual price—until it had been on the market for two months.

The whole piece is worth a read either way. But if you can’t find the time, just let the quote sink in for a bit. Traditional publishers are artificially constraining the supply of a bunch of bits. They’re not trying their hand with alternative licensing schemes. They’re not jacking up per copy pricing for digital libraries. No. They’re constraining demand of a digital, infinitely replicable, non-marginal-cost-bound, digital product for which one pays for specifically. This is no loot box spewing random stuff for a fee or rare items in a game. Just try to imagine paying a special price for cable TV use in a public space and just to lose signal when you welcome one too many customer in your business. Good stuff.

Facebook Is Permabanning Oculus Quest 2 Owners for Owning an Oculus Quest 2

“We have already reviewed this decision and it cannot be reversed.”

The article’s title is quite succinct as it is but I’m quoting part of the message Facebook’s automated support is greeting helpless Oculus users with. For a few of reasons.

  1. It’s a lie. This is automated. No one reviewed anything.
  2. I hear aggressively lying to your customer through an automated support system does for great PR and even greater user experience.
  3. It’s always awesome when customer support isn’t customer support at all, no?
  4. Even more so when it’s designed to make it harder to talk to anyone and appeal a decision. Just like humans expect in real life interactions, right?