Techmeme
June 24, 2023, 12:20 PM

Top News

Mark Matousek / The Information:
Social media startup IRL is shutting down after an investigation by its board concluded that 95% of its claimed 20M MAUs in 2022 were “automated or from bots”  —  Last year, the CEO of messaging app IRL repeatedly said it had 20 million monthly active users …
Rani Molla / Vox:
Startups are using remote work to attract talent; report: 81% of companies with fewer than 5K employees offer remote work vs. 26% for those with 25K+ employees  —  How small tech companies are using remote work to compete with the big guys.  —  It used to be that Big Tech companies like Google …
Alex Heath / The Verge:
Sources: Meta plans to debut its Twitter rival, potentially named Threads, in mid-July and is pitching celebrities and creators to join a “sanely” run platform  —  Mark Zuckerberg is the overwhelming favorite to beat Elon Musk in a cage match.  Will it actually happen?
Manish Singh / TechCrunch:
Andy Jassy says Amazon plans to invest $15B more in India by 2030, likely most for AWS expansion; in May 2023, AWS announced a $12.7B investment in the country  —  Amazon plans to more than double its investment in India in the next seven years, the e-commerce group said …
The Economic Times:
Tom Warren / The Verge:
FTC v. Microsoft: Phil Spencer says Microsoft acquired ZeniMax for $7.5B to stop Sony from paying for Bethesda games like Starfield to be PlayStation exclusives  —  Microsoft's Xbox chief has revealed one of the key reasons behind the acquisition of Bethesda parent company ZeniMax: potential Starfield PlayStation exclusivity.
Nico Grant / New York Times:
NetBlocks: at least five Russian telcos block Google News and other ISPs reduce access to the service, as Russia's feud with a mercenary leader intensifies  —  At least five telecommunications companies have blocked the service, which aggregates news from various sources …
Wired:
How companies are repurposing military-grade AI, built by US defense contractors for intelligence, to identify labor organizing, internal leakers, and critics  —  Spycraft developed by defense contractors are now being sold to employers to identify labor organizing.  Regulators must step up to protect workers' privacy.
More: PoliticoTwitter: @1roboter, @willie_agnew, @codepo8, and @backchnnl
Zack Whittaker / TechCrunch:
A US federal court sentences UK citizen Joseph James O'Connor to five years in prison for helping hack into dozens of high-profile Twitter accounts in July 2020  —  Prosecutors called for the British hacker to serve at least seven years  —  Three years after one of the most visible hacks …

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