Techmeme
August 3, 2021, 7:10 PM

Top News

Richard Lawler / The Verge:
Activision Blizzard says president J. Allen Brack is leaving the company, replaced by Jen Oneal and Mike Ybarra, as the fallout from CA lawsuit continues  —  Jen Oneal and Mike Ybarra will take over as co-leaders  —  In the last week or so, we've learned about the state of California filing …
Sean Hollister / The Verge:
Activision Blizzard says that Blizzard's head of global human resources, Jesse Meschuk, has also left the company  —  Jesse Meschuk, SVP of global HR, has left  —  Blizzard president J. Allen Brack isn't the only executive leaving the company today after presiding over a culture now accused of fostering “constant sexual harassment.”
Dean Takahashi / VentureBeat:
Activision beats expectations in Q2 with revenue of $2.29B, up 19% YoY, and net bookings of $1.92B, down only 7% YoY, notes risks of the sexual harassment suit  —  Activision Blizzard reported earnings today that beat Wall Street's and its own expectations with 19% revenue growth to $2.29 billion for the second quarter ended June 30.
Nilay Patel / The Verge:
Q&A with YouTube chief product officer Neal Mohan on monetizing Shorts, content moderation with Content ID, YouTube TV, competing with TikTok, and more  —  YouTube chief product officer Neal Mohan joined Decoder this week to discuss YouTube's new $100 million fund to begin paying creators …
Sarah Perez / TechCrunch:
Mark Gurman / Bloomberg:
Apple and Affirm's PayBright will launch a “buy now, pay later” program for iPhone, Mac, and iPad purchases in Canada on Aug. 11, according to a staff message  —  - Monthly installments to be offered in Canada on Apple devices  — Company working on future service for all Apple Pay purchases
Jay Peters / The Verge:
Microsoft tells employees it will require proof of vaccination to enter a Microsoft building in the US starting September, with medical and religious exceptions  —  The full opening of its US offices will be ‘no earlier’ than October 4th  —  Microsoft has informed employees that it will require proof …
Bloomberg:
Q&A with SEC chair Gary Gensler on protecting cryptocurrency investors from fraud, regulating the industry, Bitcoin ETFs, and other SEC priorities like GameStop  —  It's become a parlor game in Washington, on Wall Street, and in Silicon Valley to figure out where U.S. Securities …
Brian Heater / TechCrunch:
Citizen launches Protect, a $20/month service that offers access to a Citizen operator and other features, after a 100,000-user beta test  —  After months of testing with upwards of 100,000 beta testers, Citizen today is launching its premium Protect offering for all users.
Jon Porter / The Verge:
Spotify is testing Spotify Plus, a low-cost tier that includes ads but doesn't impose limits on track skipping and lets users pick specific songs to play  —  Spotify Plus is being piloted with a ‘limited number’ of users  —  Spotify Plus is a new $.99 subscription tier being piloted …
Antoine Gara / Forbes:
How Michael Dell oversaw Dell's expansion after taking it private, growing the company to $75B, by focusing on providing infrastructure to businesses and others  —  After years battling Silicon Valley skeptics and Wall Street adversaries, Michael Dell has pulled off the deal of the century …
Chong Koh Ping / Wall Street Journal:
After Chinese state media criticized online gaming as “opium for the mind” in a now-deleted article, Tencent announces stricter rules for young users  —  Shares of NetEase and Bilibili also suffer steep falls  —  Shares of Tencent Holdings Ltd. and rivals plummeted Tuesday …
Mitchell Clark / The Verge:
WhatsApp is rolling out a View Once feature for photos and videos that disappear from the chat after the recipient opens it  —  There and gone  —  WhatsApp is rolling out its “View Once” feature today, which deletes photos or videos from your chat after they've been opened by the recipient.
Andrew Kersley / Wired UK:
Sources: well over 100 UK-based employees at Amazon's Prime Air drone delivery unit have lost their jobs since 2019, as the company scales back its ambitions  —  Amazon has triggered mass redundancies and transfers as it winds down a huge part of its UK drone delivery business
Chance Miller / 9to5Mac:
Apple rolls out three new AMD Radeon Pro graphic card modules for Intel-based Mac Pros; the options range from $2,400 to $5,600 in build-to-order configurations  —  Apple has rolled out three new graphics card modules for the Intel-powered Mac Pro today.  The new graphics card modules include …
The Information:
Facebook confirms it is building a team of AI researchers to study ways of analyzing encrypted data without decrypting it, potentially helping better target ads  —  Facebook is bulking up a team of artificial intelligence researchers, including a key hire from Microsoft …
Lauren Kaori Gurley / VICE:
Sources: NLRB probe found Amazon illegally interfered with workers organizing in Staten Island, NY; NLRB officer recommends election rerun for Alabama warehouse  —  The National Labor Relations Board found that Amazon illegally interfered with worker organizing at its Staten Island, New York warehouse in May.
Maggie Fitzgerald / CNBC:
Robinhood's stock closes at $46.80, up 24.2% on the day's trading, blowing past its IPO price of $38 and becoming the day's “top traded stock” on Fidelity  —  - Robinhood went public last Thursday on the Nasdaq under the ticker HOOD.  — The stock priced at $38 per share, the low end of its offering range.
More: Forbes and CoinJournal
Rainey Reitman / Electronic Frontier Foundation:
The confusing language in the infrastructure bill's crypto provision suggests that nearly any entity in crypto is a broker and must collect their users' data  —  The forthcoming Senate draft of Biden's infrastructure bill—a 2,000+ page bill designed to update the United States' roads …
Martin Matishak / The Record:
A bipartisan Senate investigation finds that, despite years of warnings, many US government agencies have not established effective cybersecurity programs  —  Several major federal agencies continue to fail to address recurring cybersecurity vulnerabilities or implement basic standards …
Sam Rutherford / Gizmodo:
Google's Rick Osterloh demos Pixel 6's Tensor SoC, which enables real-time object detection and HDR in videos as well as real-time translation and live captions  —  We sat down with Google's phone chief, Rick Osterloh, to see what the Pixel 6 has in store.  —  Alerts
Dieter Bohn / The Verge:

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