Techmeme
April 15, 2021, 10:10 AM

Top News

David Priest / CNET:
Jeff Bezos says Amazon Prime now has 200M+ subscribers, up 50M from the beginning of 2020, and Amazon's net profit in 2020 was $21.3B  —  In a new letter to shareholders, Jeff Bezos talks company growth and employee work conditions.  —  A new letter to shareholders from Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos revealed …
NBC News:
US sanctions Russia for 2020 election interference and SolarWinds hack, blacklisting six tech companies that provide support to Russian intelligence services  —  The United States is hitting Russia with fresh sanctions for interference in the 2020 presidential election …
Jay Peters / The Verge:
Google Earth gets a big update with historical 3D time lapses that show the devastating effects of climate change, using satellite photos from the last 37 years  —  The new feature will be available Thursday  —  Google Earth is getting a new 3D time-lapse feature that lets you observe …
Ryan Mac / @rmac18:
[Thread] A Facebook moderator at Accenture who just quit decries inadequate mental health support and says the current system is bad for Facebook itself  —  A Facebook content moderator contracted through Accenture in Austin quit this morning with a blistering internal note. I've typed it out in full so people can read it for themselves. https://twitter.com/...
Karissa Bell / Engadget:
Twitter says it will study any “unintentional harms” caused by its algorithms and will make the findings public as part of its Responsible ML Initiative  —  new plan to study the fairness of its algorithms.  As part of the effort, which the company has dubbed the …
Ari Levy / CNBC:
Coinbase shares close at $328.28, valuing the company at $85.78B, down from its open of $381; Nasdaq listed shares at $250 before Wednesday's open  —  - Coinbase's market cap exceeded $100 billion after its debut Wednesday morning on the Nasdaq, though the stock fell later in the day.
Ashley Carman / The Verge:
Some Clubhouse power users discuss the app's problems with scammers, moderation issues, stolen jokes, copied room concepts, celebrity imposters, and more  —  Fake laughs, imposters, and scams — behind the invite-only audio app's most obsessive users  —  For the first time since the pandemic started …
Natalie Gagliordi / ZDNet:
Dell to spin off its stake in VMware and use the proceeds of $9.3B-$9.7B to pay down Dell's debt, expecting to close the deal in Q4; Dell stock up 8%+  —  Dell sees the spin-off as a way to give each company more strategic flexibility and improve capital structure efficiencies …
Natasha Singer / New York Times:
International coalition of 35 children's and consumer groups calls on Mark Zuckerberg to scrap plans for an Instagram for children  —  An international coalition of 35 children's and consumer groups called on Instagram on Thursday to scrap its plans to develop a version of the popular photo-sharing app for users under age 13.
Mary Ann Azevedo / TechCrunch:
Routable, which enables B2B payments, raises $30M Series B led by Sam Altman, CEO of OpenAI, and Jack Altman, CEO of Lattice  —  Several prominent tech founders also put money in the round  —  We all know the COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated digital adoption in a number of areas, particularly in the financial services space.
Bloomberg:
Profile of 23-year-old Nick Lim, who founded Vancouver-based VanwaTech, a hosting provider for white supremacist websites like Daily Stormer and 8kun  —  Two and a half months before extremists invaded the U.S. Capitol, the far-right wing of the internet suffered a brief collapse.
Terry Nguyen / Vox:
Some Instagram accounts, such as NextShark, increasingly document incidents of anti-Asian violence that some say spurs a relentless cycle of aggregated trauma  —  Asian news sites like NextShark brought attention to anti-Asian racism — at the cost of circulating graphic imagery.  —  SHARE All sharing options
Crystal Tse / Bloomberg:
TuSimple, which is developing autonomous trucks, raises $1.35B in its IPO, giving it a market capitalization of ~$8.5B  —  TuSimple Holdings Inc., which is developing autonomous trucks now on the road in Texas and Arizona, priced its initial public offering above a marketed range to raise $1.35 billion.
More: PR Newswire and Reuters
Kirsten Han / Rest of World:
A man was fined ~$100,000 in Singapore last month for sharing a Facebook link ruled as defamation against the Prime Minister, setting a dangerous precedent  —  Leong Sze Hian was fined almost $100,000 for sharing a Facebook link ruled as defamation against the prime minister.  It sets a dangerous precedent.
Amy Feldman / Forbes:
Benchling, which provides cloud-based software to manage biotech R&D, raises $200M led by Sequoia Capital Global Equities at $4B valuation, 5x its value in May  —  Sajith Wickramasekara was just 24 when he made the cut for the Forbes 30 Under 30 list for his biotech R&D startup, Benchling.
Michael Sheetz / CNBC:
Astranis, which is developing small, low-cost satellites to provide broadband internet, raises $250M Series C at a $1.4B valuation led by BlackRock  —  - Astranis, a San Francisco-based company with an alternative approach to providing internet access from satellites, closed new funding to ramp up production.

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