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TL;DR

In a hurry? Here's our pick of the top news items of the week.

  • EU lawmakers agreed on a provisional deal to advance the sweeping AI Act, a landmark law set to add new guardrails around everything from facial recognition to LLMs. (Tech Brew)

  • After a bill calling for the forced sale or ban of TikTok blazed through the US House, the Senate dialed back the pace, urging cautious deliberation. (Washington Post)

  • Of the 100 most-watched broadcasts in the US last year, sports accounted for a whopping 96. (WSJ)

  • Claude 3, the latest AI model from Anthropic, is now available for all users. (Anthropic)

Audiences

  • In 2023, for the first time, Australian viewers spent more time watching paid streaming services than they did watching free-to-air television. (Unmade)

  • 3 in 5 (60%) Gen Alpha parents have watched a professional sporting event with their youngest child, and nearly 2 in 5 (39%) said the same about attending a pro game in person. (Morning Consult)

  • Among listeners of all types of podcasts, half would be more interested in watching a new TV show based on one of their favorite podcasts. (Podnews)

Platforms

  • Apple will allow app downloads from the web to evade EU scrutiny. (Bloomberg)

  • Spotify has launched music videos in 11 countries, including the UK, in hopes the new feature will help fans "dive deeper into an artist's music." (Daily Mail)

  • FC Barcelona is set to launch Barça One, a free worldwide streaming platform offering content based on the Spanish football club. (IBC)

  • Instagram is working on a new collaborative engagement option for Reels called “Spins,” which would let other users remix your Reels with alternate audio and/or text elements. (Social Media Today)

  • Snapchat announced a new experiment that will let Snapchatters keep their messages in the app beyond the current 24 hour auto-delete threshold. (Social Media Today)

Content

  • The 2024 Oscars telecast on ABC averaged 19.5M viewers, a 4% increase over last year. (THR)

  • "Oppenheimer" was the big winner at the Oscars, taking home awards including best actor, best supporting actor, best director and best picture. (WSJ)

  • Winners at the 35th Annual GLAAD Media awards included "Ted Lasso," "Yellowjackets" and "RuPaul’s Drag Race" while Oprah Winfrey received this year’s Vanguard Award. (Deadline)

  • Google's Search Relations team revealed that high-quality, user-centric content is the key to increasing crawl demand. (Search Engine Journal)

Tech & AI

  • Apple acquired Canadian AI startup DarwinAI, adding technology to its arsenal ahead of a big push into generative AI this year. (Bloomberg)

  • Google is working on an AI model that has the ability to play video games on your behalf, so long as you tell it what you want it to do. (Lifehacker)

  • Oppo showcased its new augmented reality glasses prototype that looks exactly like ordinary glasses. (Mashable)

Location-based entertainment

  • Broadway audiences are still down 17% from prepandemic levels, while sales for the biggest pop concerts are up 65%. (NYT)

  • Disney will invest $30B in its theme parks over the next decade. (The Hill)

  • “Kung Fu Panda 4” had the highest opening weekend for Dreamworks Animation since the pandemic, generating $58.3M in the US. (The Wrap)

  • With a $20M opening weekend, "Dune: Part Two" has bucked the recent trend of Hollywood movies faring poorly in China. (THR)

Travel & hospitality

  • TSA unveiled its first self-screening security lane at Las Vegas's Harry Reid International Airport. (Washington Post)

  • 3 in 4 Australians plan to take up to 3 vacations in 2024, with almost two-thirds contemplating solo travel. (Karryon)

  • The integration of AI in the restaurant industry is reshaping dining experiences and operational efficiencies. (Forbes)

  • OTAs spent a record amount of money to promote their brands and attract customers in 2023. (Phocus Wire)

  • Over three-quarters (76%) of travel and hospitality decision-makers consider their personalization programs to be critical to their businesses. (Co)

Gaming

  • Summer Game Fest 2024 returns on June 7th with a two hour event hosted by Geoff Keighley. (gamesindustrybiz)

  • "Dragon’s Dogma 2" players have already racked up tens of hours in-game via its already released character creator. (IGN)

  • The 20th BAFTA Game Awards nominations have been announced and "Baldur’s Gate" racked up 10 nominations. (BAFTA)

  • Saber Interactives has split from Embracer. (gamesindustrybiz)

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