Instagram becomes an interest network with hashtag following

 Instagram has always been a social network where you follow friends and creators, but today it’s evolving with a new way to follow hashtags so you see top posts and Stories about a topic on your home page. Rather than having to dig this content out of search or the Explore tab, can see the best #Slime videos or #FloralNails tutorials no matter who posts them. Today’s change… Read More

20 critical startup truths no one will tell you

 Some knowledge is so important, everyone assumes everyone already knows it. But they don’t, especially in the tech world where things move so fast that most people are faking. But Stripe’s Patrick McKenzie spends his time helping the payment platform’s startup customers survive, and now he’s laid out 20 crucial learnings everyone should read. Click or scroll through… Read More

Snapchat seeks salvation in long-form and “hands-on” AR ads

 Snap Inc’s stock tanked after missing revenue expectations by $30 million last quarter, so Snapchat is looking to win over businesses with immersive new ads formats. This week it introduced two new forms of ads: Promoted Stories which string together multiple Snaps into a longer-form slideshows openable from a tile on the Stories page that’s shown to everyone in a given country,… Read More

Facebook teen-in-residence defects to Google and launches “Lies”

 At age 17, Michael Sayman was Facebook’s youngest employee ever. Having already launched 5 apps, he wowed Mark Zuckerberg, earned a demo spot on stage at Facebook F8 conference, and scored a full-time engineering gig as the social network’s go-to teen. Over the past three years, he helped Facebook try to crack the middle school market with apps like the now defunct Lifestage. But… Read More

Facebook launches collaborative Stories for Groups and Events

 Facebook is combining its Snapchat Stories clone with features Snapchat can’t match in a bid to boost usage. Starting today, users of Facebook Groups and Events will be able to contribute to a Story visible to the rest of the members and moderated by the admins. This could be fun for parties, weddings, meetups, and more. In essence, these collaborative Stories will work like a private… Read More

Uber gives top riders a 24/7 “Premium Support” hotline

 If something scary or infuriating happens with your Uber, sending an email to support doesn’t always cut it. And if you’ve ridden thousands of miles with Uber and paid them boatloads over the years, you might expect better service. You’re always just a few taps away from switching to Lyft, right? This week, TechCrunch spotted Uber testing new “Premium Support”… Read More

Inside Summit Series, the invite-only getaway striving for altruism

 “Make No Small Plans” is the Summit Series motto, and it doesn’t. The “Burning Man meets Davos” event company has bought a mountain, rented cruise ships, and this week, is taking over Los Angeles. If you can get an invite, Summit Series could see you learn to free dive or meditate, watch Quentin Tarantino or Kendrick Lamar debate art, take a class on polyamory… Read More