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Lazaro Gamio / Axios

Media companies that have been struggling to navigate Google and Facebook's dominance are finding that the duopoly has started to address their biggest demands this summer.

  1. Subscriptions and data: Both companies are working on features to support subscription efforts by publishers and Facebook says it will give publishers access to subscription payment and user data on its platform. Google is reportedly rethinking its "first-click free" policy, which has historically hindered subscription revenues.
  2. Ad Revenue: Facebook has made some adjustments to ad placement within Instant Articles to help publishers monetize their ads.
  3. Better brand visibility: Facebook added publisher logos to Trending and Search for increased brand visibility. Both companies have introduced efforts to algorithmically reward good publishers over spammy ones.

Why they're making nice: Mostly industry pressure, but the big tech platforms need publisher content to run ads against too. As we noted last week, there have been reports of slowed user-generated content on Facebook last year.

Expand chart
Data: eMarketer, Zenith, Google, Facebook; Note: 'Next in line' is: Yahoo, Microsoft/LinkedIn, IAC, Verizon, Amazon, Pandora, Twitter, Yelp, Snapchat, Sina, and Sohu. 'Triopoly' is Alibaba, Baidu, and Tencent; Chart: Andrew Witherspoon / Axios

Why it matters: Despite these gains, both companies continued to report significant Q2 advertising growth, while the news-media industry continues to struggle. Jason Kint, who represents premium publishers through a trade Association called Digital Content Next, tells Axios publishers have been pleased with the announcements, "but make no mistake, there is zero progress until they actually move the needle. The duopoly has THAT much control."

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Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador announced Sunday evening that he's tested positive for COVID-19.

Driving the news: López Obrador tweeted that he has mild symptoms and is receiving medical treatment. "As always, I am optimistic," he added. "We will all move forward."

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Sarah Huckabee Sanders to run for governor of Arkansas

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Former White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders will announce Monday that she's running for governor of Arkansas.

The big picture: Sanders was touted as a contender after it was announced she was leaving the Trump administration in June 2019. Then-President Trump tweeted he hoped she would run for governor, adding "she would be fantastic." Sanders is "seen as leader in the polls" in the Republican state, notes the Washington Post's Josh Dawsey, who first reported the news.

Coronavirus has inflamed global inequality

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

History will likely remember the pandemic as the "first time since records began that inequality rose in virtually every country on earth at the same time." That's the verdict from Oxfam's inequality report covering the year 2020 — a terrible year that hit the poorest, hardest across the planet.

Why it matters: The world's poorest were already in a race against time, facing down an existential risk in the form of global climate change. The coronavirus pandemic could set global poverty reduction back as much as a full decade, according to the World Bank.