Media Insider: Spotify Launches News and Music Playlist for Drivers, Publishers Love Twitch, Facebook Used Banned App to Collect Device Data on 187,000 Users

Welcome to Media Insider, PR Newswire’s round-up of media stories from the week.

Spotify on a smart phone

Spotify mimics the radio with a news and music playlist for drivers

Spotify launched a new playlist that will incorporate news podcasts called “Your Daily Drive.” Spotify users in the U.S. can now listen to the music they already enjoy with the option to hear new music recommendations and some news podcasts. Despite the new playlist’s title, anyone can access it regardless of whether they’re driving. The news clips will come from NPR, The Wall Street Journal, and Public Radio International and will update throughout the day. According to The Verge, “Spotify is testing five different podcast-only playlists that are human-curated. While those playlists are only in the testing phase for five percent of users in various countries, Your Daily Drive is available to all US users.”

ICYMI: Spotify begins testing curated podcast playlists

Twitch is emerging as a favorite new platform for publishers

Twitch — the live streaming video platform owned by Twitch Interactive, a subsidiary of Amazon — has been growing its sales team due to increased revenue that publishers utilizing the platform are receiving. According to Digiday, “Publishers like the Washington Post, Cheddar and BuzzFeed have invested in creating shows catered to the platform over the last year.” Publishers are finding the platform useful for growing audience numbers and revenue through in-stream ads and subscriptions. Branden Smith, supervising video producer at BuzzFeed, told Digiday that “Twitch enables us to interact directly with our audience, allowing for immediate feedback and engagement that we can incorporate in on the spot while filming.”

Related: ‘We have an incredible audience advantage’: Twitch is expanding its sales team as it seeks bigger deals

Facebook collected device data on 187,000 users using banned snooping app

In a letter obtained by TechCrunch, Facebook told Sen. Richard Blumenthal that the social media giant procured personal and sensitive device data on about 187,000 users of its now-defunct Research app, banned by Apple earlier this year. According to the article, a TechCrunch investigation conducted earlier this year “found both Facebook and Google were abusing their Apple-issued enterprise developer certificates, designed to only allow employees to run iPhone and iPad apps used only inside the company.” The investigation concluded that the companies were building and providing apps for consumers outside Apple’s App Store, a violation of Apple’s rules. Facebook has relaunched its research app as Study and says it will work to be more transparent about how it collects user data.

Read more on the new research app: Facebook’s new Study app pays adults for data after teen scandal

Exclusive: Washington Post editors on their new travel initiative, By The Way

To attract new, younger audiences and retain current subscribers, the Washington Post will launch a new travel product called By The Way on June 18. Amanda Finnegan, By The Way’s editor, and Emilio Garcia-Ruiz, the Post’s managing editor of digital, told Medium that By The Way was created with users in mind to support its subscription-based business model. With two full-time staff writers, By The Way will cover topics like travel news, trends, and general travel advice. “Travel feels like something we all do, and is a connection between us all, so it felt like a good fit for the Post, and also what our readers are looking for,” Finnegan told Medium.

You can check out By The Way when it launches here

Critics bemoan New York Times’ decision to stop running editorial cartoons

After The New York Times received intense criticism for publishing an anti-Semitic cartoon in its international edition, the newspaper has decided to stop publishing editorial cartoons altogether. The change was being contemplated well ahead of time but was revealed as a final decision in a blog post from Patrick Chappatte, a Times cartoonist. Although the daily political cartoons will end July 1, James Bennet, the editorial page editor, told CNN Business, “We plan to continue investing in forms of Opinion journalism, including visual journalism, that express nuance, complexity and strong voice from a diversity of viewpoints across all of our platforms.”

Read Patrick Chappatte’s blog post here.

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Joanna Giannell is a Senior Customer Content Specialist with PR Newswire. She is also an animal lover and music enthusiast. Tune into her insights as a social curator at @PRNpets.

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