1. Facebook To Spend $1 Billion On News Content Over Three Years (WallStreetJournal)

Facebook Inc. said it would spend at least $1 billion to license material from news publishers over the next three years, a pledge that comes as tech giants face scrutiny from governments around the world overpaying for news content that appears on their platforms. The spending plans are in addition to $600 million that Facebook paid since 2018 in deals with publishers like the Guardian, Financial Times, and others to populate its Facebook News product in some countries.

2. YouTube To Test More Parental Controls For Teens And Tweens, Addressing Big Gap (CNet)

YouTube plans to test a new kind of parental control called supervised accounts, which will let parents of teens and tweens have more flexibility in gating off content and turning off features on Google’s massive video site. The new test seeks to address a huge gap in oversight tools for parents of kids aged 9 and up, minors who have outgrown preschooler nursery-rhyme videos but who are still too young to safely access no-holds-barred YouTube, dark rabbit holes, and all.

3. Engine Media Is Expanding Further Into CTV To Meet Market Needs (AdExchanger)

Global media and marketing services company ENGINE Media Exchange has strengthened its capabilities by adding Device Graph+ on Wednesday. With that, the company adds more CTV solutions to its existing planning and buying capabilities across mobile, display, and online video to meet the market demands in the cookieless world. “We’re trying to solve for where the market is headed,” said Michael Zacharski, CEO of ENGINE Media Exchange.

4. Media-Commerce Convergence To Create A New Media Value Chain For US Markets (EMarketer)

Insider Intelligence forecasts the US retail Social Commerce sales to rise by 24.8% to $36.09 billion in 2021, representing 4.3% of all retail eCommerce sales. It is going to register a growth rate of 37.9%, up from the 2020 growth predictions at 19.8%. The study predicts media-commerce convergence, a powerful trend, which explicitly commercializes media content by making it shoppable.

5. ViacomCBS To Launch Paramount+ In March To Strengthen Its Streaming Services (AdAge)

On Wednesday, ViacomCBS Chairwoman Shari Redstone said at a company promotional event that they have plans to release dozens of new TV shows and movies to anchor its streaming service next month, which will be renamed Paramount+. The lineup will include a mix of live sports and news as well as shows based on the classic movies “Flashdance” and “The Italian Job,” a revival of “Frasier” and a spinoff of the popular western “Yellowstone.” Paramount+ will include more than 30,000 episodes of TV and two thousand movie titles.

6. Amendments To Australian Media Bill Diverts Big-Tech Money To Old Media; Kills Media Diversity (Crikey)

By amending the mandatory news bargaining code overnight, Australia has ended up with the worst possible deal, which strengthens both old media and big tech monopolies, particularly the News Corp and Facebook. Old media gain almost 90% of the cash, which is expected to benefit News Corp, Seven West Media, and Nine. These three sources would gain about $110 million of the $125 million on offer to private media from Google. A similar split is expected in the Facebook deals also, which will undermine media diversity.

7. Spain’s Wallapop Raises $191M At An $840M Valuation For Its Classifieds Marketplace (TechCrunch)

The Spanish virtual marketplace, Wallapop, which lets people resell their used items or sell items they make themselves, has raised €157 million ($191 million) during the pandemic. The Barcelona-based company has decided to use the money to continue growing the infrastructure that underpins its service in order to expand its users. The funding is coming at a valuation of €690 million ($840 million) which is a significant jump on the $570 million valuations in 2016.