Hello, welcome to a new edition of The Monitor, WIRED’s culture news roundup. We hope everyone had a nice Labor Day weekend full of barbecues and binge-watching. What did you miss while you were soaking up the last of summer? Well, while you’ve been relaxing, YouTube has been removing hateful content—lots of it. Also, Taylor Swift is once again at the top of the Billboard charts, and Spotify came up with a new way to send horoscopes right to your podcast feed. Here we go.
Spotify Has a New Way to Bring You Your Horoscope
Building on the internet’s growing interest in astrology, today Spotify-owned Parcast launched a new series of podcasts designed to give each individual astrological sign their own horoscope each day. Horoscope Today will feature 12 daily shows for everyone from Sagittariuses to Leos. Spotify bought Parcast in March as part of its growing portfolio of podcast companies, which includes Gimlet and Anchor.
YouTube Has Removed More Than 100,000 Hateful or Abusive Videos
In a new blog post today, YouTube revealed that it has taken down more than 17,000 channels and 100,000 videos for violations to the site’s hate speech policies. The company also said it removed half a million comments in the second quarter of 2019, many of them for reasons relating to hateful or abusive content. These numbers come as the result of policy changes at YouTube that the company has been implementing over the past year. For quite some time critics have said the video service’s moderation policies are inconsistent to say the least. In the blog post, the company said, “Before we do the work of removing content that violates our policies, we have to make sure the line between what we remove and what we allow is drawn in the right place—with a goal of preserving free expression, while also protecting and promoting a vibrant community.”
Taylor Swift Has Another No. 1 Album
Once again, Taylor Swift rules the pop charts. Over the weekend, the singer’s latest album, Lover, debuted at the top of the Billboard 200, making it her sixth record to do so. Lover netted 867,000 equivalent album units in the US in its first week, 679,000 of which were album sales. Those are the largest sales of any album since T. Swift released Reputation in late 2017.
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