Techmeme
January 31, 2023, 2:50 PM

Top News

Jack Schickler / CoinDesk:
Independent examiner: Celsius misled its investors, sometimes used new customer funds to pay for withdrawals, CEO Alex Mashinsky made false claims, and more  —  Shoba Pillay was appointed by a New York bankruptcy court to look at whether the crypto lender operated as a Ponzi scheme
Takashi Mochizuki / Bloomberg:
Sources: Sony halves its PlayStation VR2 shipment forecast to ~1M units in Q1 after early preorders disappointed; the headset is slated to launch on February 22  —  Sony Group Corp. reduced projections for the initial launch of its PlayStation VR2 headset dramatically after early pre-orders disappointed …
The Verge:
Apple HomePod (second-gen) review: similarly good sound quality, useful sensors, and a responsive Siri, but pricey and the best experience is via a paired set  —  Apple's second take on the HomePod doesn't stray far from the original, but it's better all around.
Casey Newton / Platformer:
Instagram co-founders Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger form a venture to explore next-gen social apps; the first is Artifact, a TikTok-like app for news articles  —  EXCLUSIVE: Meet Artifact, a kind of TikTok for text  —  Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger are back.
Jason Schreier / Bloomberg:
A look at Microsoft's prized 343 Industries, the studio behind Halo, after a leadership overhaul, layoffs, and more; sources detail a pivot to Unreal Engine  —  Microsoft Corp. says it's going to keep making new games in the popular Halo franchise at its prized 343 Industries studio — despite rumors to the contrary.
Anna Nicolaou / Financial Times:
Ina Fried / Axios:
Jillian Deutsch / Bloomberg:
A draft EU “fair-share” document proposes making Netflix, Alphabet, and other “large traffic generators” to help pay for next-generation internet infrastructure  —  The European Union is weighing a proposal to make technology companies that use the most bandwidth …
Kat Bailey / IGN:
Sources: Microsoft, Nintendo, and Sony do not plan to attend E3 2023, to be held in-person from June 13 to June 16; E3 2022 was canceled due to the pandemic  —  All three of gaming's first-party console manufacturers appear poised to skip E3's big return.  —  E3's first physical event …
Sharon Goldman / VentureBeat:
Jonathan Stempel / Reuters:
A US judge says the names of the two people who posted SBF's $250M bail can be made public, but holds the ruling until at least February 7, expecting an appeal  —  A U.S. judge on Monday said the names of two people who helped guarantee bail for indicted FTX cryptocurrency exchange founder Sam Bankman-Fried …
Parmy Olson / Bloomberg:
The European Commission plans to require that country regulators report six times a year on GDPR investigations and more, after a complaint by rights group ICCL  —  It's well established that the European Union has some of the strictest privacy laws in the world, threatening fines of up to 4% of a company's annual turnover.
Matt Tamanini / The Streamable:
Paramount Global plans to merge its Showtime streaming service with Paramount+'s ad-free tier later in 2023 and call the new offering Paramount+ with SHOWTIME  —  It's been a long time coming, but later this year, Paramount Global will finally fully integrate the streaming arm …
Mike Butcher / TechCrunch:
Tech Nation, the UK-sanctioned tech ecosystem builder, plans to shut down on March 31 after 10+ years, due to losing its grant funding to a Barclays-run program  —  After over ten years in operation, Tech Nation, the UK's government-sanctioned ecosystem builder for UK tech startups …
Kim Jaewon / Nikkei Asia:
Samsung reports Q4 operating profit down 69% YoY to ~$3.5B, its lowest since Q3 2014, and revenue down 8% YoY to ~$57.3B, citing weak chip and smartphone demand  —  South Korean tech giant's slump expected to continue in first half of this year  —  SEOUL — Samsung Electronics said Tuesday …
Reuters:
Lauren Feiner / CNBC:
A look at US cases that may set the bounds of free speech online, including Gonzalez v. Google, Twitter v. Taamneh, and a fight over California's kid safety law  —  - The U.S. justice system, including the Supreme Court, will consider cases that will help determine the bounds of free expression on the internet.
AJ Vicens / CyberScoop:
Kaspersky: from January 2020 to June 2022, hacker groups offered salaries from six figures to $1.2M, bonuses, and paid leave to attract talent on the dark web  —  Despite the obvious risks, tech jobs with hacking groups can be alluring for those who need the money or want to do the work.
CNBC:
PayPal says it will lay off around 2,000 employees, about 7% of its workforce, “over the coming weeks”  —  Follow your favorite stocksCREATE FREE ACCOUNT  —  PayPal on Wednesday announced plans to lay off 2,000 employees, or around 7% of its workforce, according to a release posted to the company's website.

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