June 17, 2020, 11:05 AM

Top News

David Pierce / Protocol:
Shortly after Basecamp debuted its email service, HEY, it says its next iOS app update was rejected because Apple wasn't getting its cut of subscription revenue  —  Right around the time the team at Basecamp was launching their Hey email service to the public on Monday, Zach Waugh …
John Gruber / Daring Fireball:
The distinction of business vs. consumer as a justification for Apple's rejection of HEY from the App Store for not using in-app purchases is flimsy  —  This statement is paraphrased by Pierce, not a direct quote, but on its surface this business/consumer distinction seems untenable.
Mark Zuckerberg / USA Today:
Facebook launches Voting Information Center for accurate election information and tools for voter registration, aiming to help register 4M people via its apps  —  The 2020 election is going to be unlike any other.  It was already going to be a heated campaign, and that was before the pandemic …
Salvador Rodriguez / CNBC:
Facebook and Instagram will allow some US users to turn off political ads starting Wednesday; the feature will roll out to all US users over the next few weeks  —  - Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg on Tuesday announced the social network will allow its users to turn off seeing political ads.
Aaron Holmes / Business Insider:
Google cracks down on The Federalist and ZeroHedge for violating policies on race-related content and may permanently suspend their access to Google Ads revenue  —  - Google is cracking down on two right-wing outlets, ZeroHedge and The Federalist, for violating its policies on race-related content.
Wall Street Journal:
Trump administration official says DOJ will propose limiting Section 230 legal protections for online platforms like Facebook and Twitter  —  The action follows President Trump's executive order seeking to weaken broad immunity enjoyed by Facebook, Twitter and other platforms
Apple says its head of diversity and inclusion Christie Smith, who joined in 2017, is leaving  —  - Apple VP of Diversity and Inclusion Smith had joined in 2017  — Company planning $100 million initiative to promote equality  —  Apple Inc.'s head of diversity and inclusion Christie Smith is leaving the iPhone company.
Emil Protalinski / VentureBeat:
Boston Dynamics says Spot, its quadruped robot, is now available to businesses in the US as part of a developer kit for $74,500  —  Boston Dynamics today opened commercial sales of Spot, its quadruped robot that can climb stairs and traverse rough terrain.  Businesses can purchase …
Anthony Ha / TechCrunch:
Unbounce, which builds optimized landing pages for SMBs using automation, raises ~$38.4M led by Crest Rock Partners  —  Landing page optimization company Unbounce is announcing that it has raised $52 million Canadian (approximately $38.4 million in US dollars).
Mary Jo Foley / ZDNet:
Microsoft details efforts to increase Azure durability amid pandemic by expanding submarine cable bandwidth, server scaling changes, and capacity forecasting  —  Microsoft has been making lots of under-the-covers changes to how it runs its cloud services, including Azure-based Teams, to meet demand during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Robert McMillan / Wall Street Journal:
Graphika report details a Russia-based influence campaign, known as Secondary Infektion, that ran over 6 years and 300 sites, but failed to win a large audience  —  Group known as Secondary Infektion used multiple languages, burner accounts to circumvent attempts to detect it
Alex Wilhelm / TechCrunch:
Upgrade, a digital bank focusing on personal loans and credit cards, raises $40M Series D led by Santander InnoVentures at a $1B valuation  —  This morning Upgrade, a credit-focused fintech startup, announced that it has raised a $40 million Series D round that the company says gives it a $1 billion valuation.
Mike Wheatley / SiliconANGLE:
Uptycs, a SQL-based security analytics startup, raises $30M Series B led by Sapphire Ventures, bringing its total raised to $43M  —  Structured Query Language-based security analytics firm Uptycs Inc. said today it has raised a new round of $30 million.  —  The Series B round of funding brings …
More: TechCrunch and FinSMEs
Frederic Lardinois / TechCrunch:
Headless CMS company Contentful raises $80M Series E led by Sapphire Ventures, bringing its total raised to $158.3M  —  Headless CMS company Contentful today announced that it has raised an $80 million Series E funding round led by Sapphire Ventures, with participation from General Catalyst …
More: FinSMEs and
Janko Roettgers / Protocol:
Bose is shutting down its AR program, saying its technology couldn't be commercialized as planned, with current AR apps ceasing to function within 30 days  —  Bose has become the latest company to throw in the towel on immersive computing, shutting down its ambitious Bose AR program.
Andrew J. Hawkins / The Verge:
San Francisco's district attorney sues DoorDash for allegedly misclassifying workers as contractors instead of employees despite California's AB5 law  —  The largest food delivery service in the US is accused of misclassifying workers  —  DoorDash, the high-flying food delivery startup …
Duncan Riley / SiliconANGLE:
Pagaya, which uses AI and big-data analytics to manage institutional money, raises $102M Series D, bringing its total raised to $221.9M  —  Artificial intelligence financial technology startup Pagaya Technologies Ltd. revealed today that it has raised $102 million in new funding partly to move into new asset classes.
More: FinSMEs and VentureBeat

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