Techmeme
April 24, 2017, 11:35 AM

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Mike Isaac / New York Times:
A look at Travis Kalanick's risk taking, from his early startups to Uber, which once led Tim Cook to threaten Kalanick with app removal for breaking store rules  —  Travis Kalanick's drive to win in life has led to a pattern of risk-taking that has put his ride-hailing company on the brink of implosion.
Sarah Perez / TechCrunch:
Twitch launching an invite-only affiliate program allowing non-partnered channels to earn revenue, starting with chat-based “Cheering with Bits” tipping feature  —  On the heels of yesterday's news about expanded subscription options for partners, video streaming site Twitch today …
Ruth Reader / Fast Company:
Profile of PayPal subsidiary Venmo, which has grown to an estimated 7M MAUs and processed $18B in payments in 2016 after struggling early with compliance, fraud  —  Under parent company PayPal, the millennial-focused payments app is finally ready to make some money.  —  [Illustrations: Danilo Agutoli]
Ainsley Harris / Fast Company:
Inside the demise of Tilt, which raised a total of $67M+, was valued at $375M in 2015, but was recently bought by Airbnb, reportedly for $12M  —  In 2015, social payments company Tilt was worth $375 million.  Less than two years later, it had lost over 95% of its value and was sold for a pittance.
More: Longreads
Economist:
How Alibaba, Tencent, and Baidu fight for dominance in China while trying to expand abroad  —  Tencent is leading the acquisition spree, with Alibaba a close second  —  THERE was a time, not that long ago, when China's big internet companies were dismissed by investors in Silicon Valley …
More: Fortune
Kyle Orland / Ars Technica:
Revised NPD report for 2016 shows digital revenue accounted for 74% of US game spending, reaching $18.13B versus $6.37B from physical sales  —  NPD “restatement” shows consistent spending growth as digital sales dominate.  —  Last year, the Entertainment Software Association's annual …
Nicole Perlroth / New York Times:
Russian hacker Roman Seleznev sentenced to 27 years for theft, sale of 2M+ CC numbers resulting in $170M+ in losses, the longest hacking-related sentence in US  —  Federal prosecutors have yet to capture or convict the foreign computer criminals believed to be behind the hackings of big retailers like Target and Neiman Marcus.

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