February 14, 2022, 2:45 PM

Top News

Lucy Harley-Mckeown / The Block:
Coinbase, FTX, eToro, and other apps surge in popularity after multiple crypto Super Bowl ads; Coinbase rose from 186th to 2nd on US App Store after QR code ad  —  Crypto apps shot up App Store download charts in the US on Monday morning, after a Super Bowl studded with digital assets advertising.
Todd Bishop / GeekWire:
Microsoft tells employees it will fully reopen its facilities in Washington state starting February 28, citing high rates of COVID-19 vaccination in King County  —  Updated below with information on Expedia reopening.  —  One of the longest “three weeks” in history will soon come to an end.
John D. McKinnon / Wall Street Journal:
Texas sues Meta over its use of facial recognition from 2010 to late 2021 in the state; source: Texas seeks hundreds of billions of dollars in civil penalties  —  State says social-media giant violated privacy protections in lawsuit, seeks hundreds of billions of dollars in civil penalties
Billy Perrigo / TIME:
Interviews and documents reveal traumatic working conditions at a Facebook content moderation facility in Kenya, run by Sama, with pay as low as $1.50/hour  —  This story is based on interviews with more than a dozen current and former Sama employees, as well as hundreds of pages …
New York Times:
A profile of Peter Thiel, who plans to leave Meta's board to focus on politics, funding far-right MAGA candidates who peddle conspiracies and deny Biden won  —  Peter Thiel, one of Donald J. Trump's biggest donors in 2016, has re-emerged as a prime financier of the Make America Great Again movement.
The Block:
SEC fines crypto lending company BlockFi $100M, which will register its high-yield crypto savings product and offer it as a security as part of the settlement  —  The Securities and Exchange Commission announced Monday that it fined crypto lending firm BlockFi $100 million …
UK's HMRC tax authority seizes three NFTs in a £1.4M fraud case involving 250 alleged fake companies, the first UK law enforcement agency to seize an NFT  —  The UK tax authority has seized three Non-Fungible Tokens (NFT) as part of a probe into a suspected a VAT fraud involving 250 alleged fake companies.
Mia Sato / The Verge:
Snapchat is testing mid-roll ads in the Stories of some US creators, ahead of a wider rollout, and will share revenue based on engagement and other metrics  —  The feature is currently in beta testing  —  Snapchat is introducing a new way for creators on the app to earn money.
Ingrid Lunden / TechCrunch:
London-based Tripledot, which makes a Solitaire app, Woodoku, and other casual mobile games, raises a $116M Series B led by 20VC at a $1.4B valuation  —  Casual mobile games have reached a fever pitch of interest with consumers, and so too with investors, who are rushing to back the biggest …
David Yaffe-Bellany / New York Times:
As bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies appreciate in value, tracking and valuing holdings is becoming a major source of contention in US divorces  —  Dividing the family's Bitcoin stash has become a major source of contention in divorce cases.  —  The divorce dragged on for eight years, almost as long as the marriage.

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