Techmeme
October 30, 2022, 11:25 PM

Top News

Alex Heath / The Verge:
Sources: Twitter plans to change Twitter Blue into a $19.99 subscription that verifies users; staff are told they will be fired if they don't build it by Nov. 7  —  Now that he owns Twitter, Elon Musk has given employees their first ultimatum: Meet his deadline to introduce paid verification on Twitter or pack up and leave.
Casey Newton / Platformer:
Sources: Twitter is strongly considering taking away its verified users' badges if they don't subscribe to Twitter Blue for $4.99 per month  —  Under pressure to generate revenue quickly, Twitter's new CEO considers ending free verification  —  Twitter is strongly considering making …
Alex Heath / The Verge:
Sources: Elon Musk had the Twitter homepage for logged out users quietly changed to the Explore page, instead of a sign-up form, on October 28  —  On his first day, Twitter's new ‘Chief Twit’ quietly changed the homepage to send a message. … Before, visiting Twitter's homepage while logged …
Martin Peers / The Information:
Source: Elon Musk fired four Twitter executives, including CEO Parag Agrawal, “for cause”, in an apparent attempt to avoid severance and unvested stock payouts  —  When Elon Musk terminated four top Twitter executives, including CEO Parag Agrawal and CFO Ned Segal on Thursday …
Lauren Hirsch / New York Times:
Twitter faces ~$1B per year in interest expenses after Elon Musk's deal added ~$13B in debt, up from ~$50M in 2021 when operations generated ~$633M in cash flow  —  Mr. Musk faces financial challenges in owning Twitter.  The site frequently loses money and took on $13 billion in debt for the blockbuster deal.
New York Times:
Casey Newton / Platformer:
Rachel Sharp / The Independent:
In a now-deleted tweet replying to Hillary Clinton, Elon Musk shared a lurid, baseless conspiracy theory about the hammer attack on Nancy Pelosi's husband Paul  —  Billionaire peddled the conspiracy theory on Twitter just days after he completed his takeover of the social media platform
More: Axios, BBC, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Livemint, Washington Post, Insider, The Week, NBC News, New York Times, The Hill, WeeTracker, Lucian Truscott Newsletter, The Guardian, BuzzFeed News, Bloomberg, Axios, Newser, and The Wrap
Dan Milmo / The Guardian:
Twitter's head of safety and integrity says the service has not changed content policies but was subjected to “an organized effort to make people think we have”  —  Platform says 300 accounts carried out 50,000-plus tweets in ‘organised effort to make users think firm has changed content policy’
Khari Johnson / Wired:
An interview with Gerard de Graaf, the director of a new EU office in San Francisco, on the DMA coming into force on November 1 and its impact on tech companies  —  The Digital Markets Act will force big tech platforms to break open their walled gardens in 2023, says the EU's new ambassador to Silicon Valley.
Mark Gurman / Bloomberg:
Sources: Apple plans to launch M2-based versions of the 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pros in early March 2023; the M2 Max will have 12 CPU cores and 38 GPU cores  —  Apple's next group of Macs probably won't launch until early next year, which means it will have fewer new devices to sell in the holiday quarter.
ProPublica:
Analysis reveals how Google's ad business funnels revenue to prolific purveyors of health, election, and climate disinfo in Europe, Latin America, and Africa  —  Google is funneling revenue to some of the web's most prolific purveyors of false information in Europe, Latin America and Africa, a ProPublica investigation has found.
Christina Caron / New York Times:
Some teens are using TikTok to self-diagnose mental illnesses, as health providers worry about inaccurate information and accounts encouraging harmful behavior  —  While social media can help people feel less alone, using it to evaluate symptoms has several downsides.

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Christopher Mims / Wall Street Journal: