Hashtag Trending – Shopify scams; The future of movie theatres; AI judges your music tastes

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Shopify’s soaring success leads to the dark side of scams and counterfeit goods, move theatres are going through quite the digital transformation, and the latest way to be judged for your taste in music is finally here!

It’s all the tech news that’s popular right now. Welcome to Hashtag Trending! It’s Thursday, December 24, and I’m your host Baneet Braich.

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Shopify has become one of the pandemic’s biggest winners as local businesses are turning to more online solutions to help sell their goods. But despite the soaring success, Shopify has become a hub for scams and counterfeit goods, according to FakeSpot. When 120,000 Shopify sites were analyzed, FakeSpot says as many as 21 per cent posed a risk to shoppers. Although Shopify says it has terminated many of these online threats, experts say it will need to tackle this problem very seriously moving forward. [LinkedIn]

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What is the future of movie theatres? While some have argued that the industry will never recover due to the pandemic, others see opportunity. A recent piece in Bloomberg was adamant that your couch will never really be a replacement for the big screen. Some changes could come to the industry like more private showings for groups and parties. For example, Cinemark sold more than 100,000 private watch parties, generating at least $10 million in revenue. Others online have suggested that movies could stay in theatres longer, or even adopt a more restaurant-style dining and drinking format with new releases playing on the big screen nearby. [LinkedIn]

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And lastly, Your taste in music on Spotify might be slightly judged by The Puddings new AI bot. The digital publication launched the ‘How Bad Is Your Spotify?’ bot to “judge your awful taste in music.” After a user logs in, the bot searches through their listening behaviours and, well judges them. One user who listens to a lot of Fallout Boy was told their Spotify streams were “adult-skateboarder-eyeliner-and-screaming-basic-show tunes-bad”. Uhm. Thank you? [Twitter]

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That’s all the tech news that’s trending right now. Hashtag Trending is a part of the ITWC Podcast network. Add us to your Alexa Flash Briefing or your Google Home daily briefing. We’re off until next Monday when we will continue with more of our holiday episodes looking back at 2020 tech trends and top stories. And remember, over the next couple of weeks, we want you to tell us what you think is this year’s biggest Canadian tech story. Let us know on Twitter @ITWorldCa, or leave a comment on the show notes for this episode at ITWorldCanada.com. Respondents will be entered into a draw for a chance to win an IT World Canada mug in the New Year!

I’m Baneet Braich, happy holidays, and thanks for listening.

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