Techmeme
August 15, 2020, 8:15 AM

Top News

Kurt Wagner / Bloomberg:
Facebook launches paid online events in 20 countries with waived fees during COVID-19, says Apple is hurting SMBs by refusing to waive its 30% cut on iOS  —  Facebook Inc. joined a growing list of developers to publicly criticize Apple Inc. over its revenue-sharing policy for in-app purchases …
Tom Warren / The Verge:
By weaponizing Fortnite and with Apple as its primary target, Epic Games is well positioned to lead the fight for a change in app store policies  —  Epic Games executed its most ambitious Fortnite live event yesterday, leading both Apple and Google to remove one of the world's most popular games from their app stores.
Nick Statt / The Verge:
Epic's Tim Sweeney says fight with Apple is about “the basic freedoms of all consumers and developers” to install and distribute apps as they choose  —  Sweeney says the explosive feud with Apple is not solely about money  —  Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney has issued a series …
Nick Statt / The Verge:
Nick Statt / The Verge:
Abner Li / 9to5Google:
Sources: Google is planning to eventually replace Duo with Meet, after placing its consumer communication services under G Suite head Javier Soltero  —  With classic Hangouts on the way out, Google today has two video calling apps.  However, that is one too many for the company …
Bloomberg:
VC firm Initialized raises $230M for its fifth fund and says the fund was “heavily oversubscribed” despite the departure of co-founder Alexis Ohanian  —  - Existing portfolio includes unicorns Instacart, Coinbase, Ro  — Fifth fund “heavily oversubscribed” despite co-founder exit
Kim Lyons / The Verge:
In a new Instagram update, Facebook has started replacing the Instagram DM icon with Messenger's logo, although cross-messaging is still not functional  —  You might see this pop-up when you open Instagram  —  Facebook appears to flipping the switch on integrating the chat systems for Instagram and Messenger.
Wall Street Journal:
Sources: Facebook didn't apply hate speech rules to at least four flagged individuals and groups in India, showing a pattern of favoritism to Modi's party  —  Company executive in vital market opposed move to ban controversial politician; some employees allege favoritism to ruling party
BuzzFeed News:
Lora Kolodny / CNBC:
Trump issues EO forcing ByteDance to sell or spin off its US TikTok business within 90 days and destroy all copies of TikTok data attached to US users  —  - President Donald Trump issued an executive order Friday that will force China's ByteDance to sell or spin off its U.S. TikTok business within 90 days.
Biz Carson / Protocol:
Interviews with 20+ founders and investors provide an inside look at Y Combinator's virtual W20 Demo Day, which saw some companies lower their target valuations  —  It was four weeks before Y Combinator's scheduled March 2020 Demo Day, and the pressure was on Helena Merk as she tried to pivot her startup idea ahead of the big pitch.
Richard Waters / Financial Times:
Ripple, sitting on $16B in XRP, says it plans to expand beyond its original cross-border payments system by becoming the “Amazon of payments”  —  The start-up is still trying to find compelling uses for the blockchain technology underpinning its XRP currency
Jason Schreier / Bloomberg:
Ubisoft fires Ashraf Ismail, the creative director of its newest Assassin's Creed game, following an investigation into misconduct allegations  —  Ubisoft Entertainment SA has dismissed the creative director of the newest Assassin's Creed game, the latest result of a MeToo reckoning …
Kim Lyons / The Verge:
ICE signed a contract with facial recognition company Clearview AI this week for “mission support”, government contracting records show  —  The contract comes after months of scrutiny of Clearview's privacy practices  —  Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) …
Chloe Hadavas / Slate:
A look at the Global Internet Forum to Counter Terrorism, formed by Facebook, Microsoft, Twitter, and YouTube in 2017, whose database helps fight misinformation  —  Last October, a neo-Nazi livestreamed his attack on a synagogue in Halle, Germany.  The video of the shooting, which killed two people …

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