Less than two years after he was named co-CEO of Salesforce alongside founder Marc Benioff, the company announced Tuesday that Keith Block would be stepping down, leaving Benioff as sole CEO.
Tom Krazit ( @tomkrazit) is Protocol's enterprise editor, covering cloud computing and enterprise technology out of the Pacific Northwest. He has written and edited stories about the technology industry for almost two decades for publications such as IDG, CNET, paidContent, and GeekWire, and served as executive editor of Gigaom and Structure.
In a Wednesday letter to Zuckerberg, Blumenthal said that Facebook's CEO or Instagram's head should "testify to set the record straight and provide members of Congress and parents with a plan on how you are going to protect our kids."
Blumenthal, who chaired the panel that heard from both Haugen and Facebook official Antigone Davis about the effect of Instagram on kids, also said Davis seemed "to have provided false or inaccurate testimony to me regarding attempts to internally conceal its research."
Zuckerberg once seemed ill-at-ease in Washington, but he's become something of a regular fixture on Capitol Hill. Members of Congress have secured high-profile testimony from the CEO to address concerns over Cambridge Analytica, antitrust and Facebook's cryptocurrency plans, among other issues.
The CEO has rarely made gaffes or groundbreaking confessions during the showdowns, however.
Blumenthal has also set a hearing for next week on social media and kids with representatives from Snap, TikTok and YouTube.
The U.S. Department of Commerce announced a new rule on Wednesday, placing controls on exports of items that could be used for surveillance, espionage or other actions. The rule will go into effect in 90 days and is intended to stymie the sale of hacking tools to China, Russia and other countries.
According to the Washington Post, these tools would include software like Pegasus, the military-grade spyware sold by the Israel firm NSO Group to governments around the world, which the Washington Post and a consortium of media partners reported on for The Pegasus Project.
Once the rule is enacted, organizations would need a license from the Bureau of Industry and Security in order to sell software or equipment that could be used for hacking purposes in China or Russia.
But Commerce did try to strike a balance so as not to inhibit cybersecurity efforts in some countries. For instance, according to the Post, licenses would be required for so-called "intrusion software" sold to governments in Israel, the United Arab Emirates or Saudi Arabia. But software intended for cyber defense sold to non-governmental actors in those places would not require a license. However, sending any such software to China or Russia, whether the purchaser is a government entity or not, would require a license.
The ultimate goal of the rule is to balance the need for software and equipment globally, with the protections necessary to prevent malicious activity.
According to one senior official interviewed by the Washington Post, the Department is "trying to walk the line between not impairing legitimate cybersecurity collaboration across borders, but trying to make sure these pieces of hardware and software technology aren't obtained and used by repressive governments."
A network of Russian-speaking hackers are phishing YouTube influencers with fake collaboration offers in order to hijack their accounts, Google said in a blog post Wednesday. Since May of this year, Google's Threat Analysis Group has blocked 1.6 million phishing messages and restored almost 4,000 accounts that were targeted using these techniques.
Google identified the perpetrators of the campaign as a group of hackers tied to an online forum. They developed false collaboration opportunities with YouTubers ranging from free antivirus software to online games in order to steal their accounts.
Once the victims took the bait, the hackers would take over their channels and sell it or use it to perpetuate crypto scams. The hackers have done everything from forging business emails and building fake websites to delivering malicious files via social engineering.
The company said it has "decreased the volume of related phishing emails on Gmail by 99.6% since May 2021" and has referred the scheme to the FBI for further investigation.
Sony on Wednesday announced another major PlayStation exclusive game, 2018's God of War reboot, would be making its way to the PC platform early next year. The company intends to distribute the game through both the Epic Game Store and Valve's Steam on Jan. 22.
As part of its announcement, Sony said God of War has sold more than 19.5 million copies for the PlayStation 4 platform, surpassing former sales leader Uncharted 4: Thief's End and making the Santa Monica Studio title the most successful PlayStation Studios release to date.
"Our primary goal when bringing God of War to PC was to highlight the exceptional content the team created and leverage the powerful hardware that the platform offers to create a uniquely breathtaking and high-performance version of the game," reads a blog post by Santa Monica Studio community manager Grace Orlady. "You'll be able to enjoy the full potential of our cinematic, no-cut camera as it follows Kratos and Atreus across the realms with the option of true 4k resolution, on supported devices, and unlocked framerates."
Sony has been more aggressive in the last few years about expanding its original games portfolio beyond the PlayStation, starting with Guerrilla Games' Horizon Zero Dawn and then zombie survival game Days Gone, with confirmed plans to port Naughty Dog's Uncharted 4 as well.
Earlier this year, Sony acquired both Bluepoint and Nixxes, companies specializing respectively in remastering games and porting games to the PC platform, to accelerate those efforts, which are partly a response to competitor Microsoft's Xbox platform and the Windows maker's device-agnostic approach to game releases.
PayPal is interested in buying Pinterest, according to Bloomberg News. The payments company recently approached Pinterest about a possible acquisition with a price tag of around $39 billion, Bloomberg reported.
The potential deal comes during a tumultuous time for Pinterest, which saw its cofounder Evan Sharp leave for LoveFrom last week. Employees have also accused Pinterest of racism and discrimination, staging walkouts and circling petitions during the 2020 summer.
Pinterest is known as a steady source of traffic for ecommerce websites. It has attempted to integrate payments and purchasing more directly on its website, without much success.
PayPal shares dropped 3% in an apparent reaction to the potential deal. The company, which split off from former parent eBay in 2015, is worth more than $300 billion — approximately six times eBay's current market cap.
WeWork's merger with a Silicon Valley SPAC went through on Tuesday, closing the loop on a chaotic two-year journey to become a publicly-traded company.
Investors in BowX, the special acquisition company helping WeWork go public, voted to officially merge with WeWork on Tuesday. The company's shares will start trading Thursday, according to the Silicon Valley Business Journal, likely under the "WE" ticker symbol. BowX said WeWork will get about $1.3 billion in cash from the deal, and it values the company at a total of about $9 billion, according to WeWork's announcement from March 2021.
The WeWork that's going public is a far cry from the high-flying company of a few years ago. WeWork filed for public status in August 2019, but the IPO went up in flames after the valuation sunk from $47 billion to $10 billion. The company removed Adam Neumann as CEO, and then was absorbed by investment firm SoftBank.
WeWork has seen its fortunes improve somewhat during the pandemic, though, as the shift to remote and hybrid work has made WeWork's flexible offerings potentially more relevant than ever. That's the message new CEO Sandeep Mathrani has been promoting, anyway, as the company has tried to get back on the right track by shedding bad deals and trimming costs. Now it will test the market's appetite for a calmer, less ambitious version of the original idea.
Activision Blizzard has fired 20 individuals and reprimanded or punished 20 more in the course of its investigation into allegations of discrimination, harassment and sexism within the company, according to a Financial Times report.
None of those fired or punished were C-suite or director-level employees, Frances Townsend, the chief compliance officer at the gaming company, told the Financial Times. The company announced the firings, as well as a large expansion of its ethics team, in an all-staff memo filed Tuesday. Townsend also said that while the company has yet to meet the demands of organizing workers, who have asked for an end to mandatory arbitration clauses in their contracts and a company-wide commitment gender pay equity, she has been given a "blank check" to make changes as she sees fits.
Activision Blizzard is facing a sweeping investigation and lawsuit from the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing into the allegations of gender-based discrimination, and the company also recently settled an investigation from the Equal Employment and Opportunity Commission into the same complaints. Activision Blizzard is now asking for a pause in the DFEH suit because the EEOC and DFEH have been publicly fighting over the nature of the dueling suits and settlements, accusing each other of ethical violations. The company appears to be taking advantage of the conflict to try to bring an end to the DFEH process.
Some workers at Activision Blizzard are instead protesting the EEOC settlement and appear to be pinning their hopes on the DFEH, accusing the current agreement of being too weak to cause real change or represent the harms that have been caused by the company.
The company is also facing charges from the Communication Workers of America union in front of the National Labor Relations Board, which allege that Activision Blizzard has tried to quash union organizing efforts protected under national labor laws in the wake of the allegations and lawsuits.
Representatives from the company did not immediately respond to request for comment.
The attorney general of Washington DC told The New York Times Wednesday that he plans to name Mark Zuckerberg in a privacy lawsuit that stems from the Cambridge Analytica scandal. The suit, first filed in December 2018, charges Facebook with misleading DC residents about their privacy, because Cambridge Analytica was able to illicitly obtain data on tens of millions of users.
Attorney general Karl Racine told the Times that new information had shed light on Zuckerberg's role in product changes that enabled third-party developers to collect data on their users' friends, a technique that allowed a Cambridge University researcher to collect reams of data and sell it to Cambridge Analytica. "Under these circumstances, adding Mr. Zuckerberg to our lawsuit is unquestionably warranted, and should send a message that corporate leaders, including the C.E.O., will be held accountable for their actions," Racine told the Times.
Facebook spokesperson Andy Stone called the allegations "meritless" in a statement to the Times and said, "We will continue to defend ourselves vigorously and focus on the facts."
Facebook is planning a rebrand, including a name change, sometime next week, The Verge reported. According to a source, the company plans to use the rebrand to signal its ambitions to become more than just a social network, positioning Facebook as just one of many products under a larger umbrella.
Many people inside the company, including senior leadership, are reportedly not privy to the details of the new name, but The Verge speculated that the name could have something to do with Horizon, the not-yet-released VR version of Facebook, which the company has been working on for the last few years. In August, the company released Horizon Workrooms in beta.
A rebrand that focuses on Facebook's metaverse plans should come as no surprise. The company has been talking about its intention to build the metaverse since this summer, including Mark Zuckerberg telling investors that building the metaverse will be expensive.
In July, Facebook announced a metaverse product group headed up by Instagram VP Vishal Shah, and most recently, Andrew "Boz" Bosworth was promoted to CTO when Mike "Schrep" Schroepfer left, bringing with him years of VR hardware experience. Under Bosworth's leadership, Facebook refocused its VR hardware play on the Oculus Quest headset, Portal smart display, and smart glasses with Ray-Ban.
"We don't comment on rumor or speculation," a Facebook spokesperson told Protocol.
This article was updated to include a statement from Facebook.
Activision Blizzard is asking a California court to halt the state's ongoing discrimination lawsuit over alleged ethical violations first raised by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), which has begun engaging in a series of back-and-forth disputes with California's Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH).
The DFEH sued Activision Blizzard in July after a multi-year investigation into the company's workplace culture, alleging the game publisher and in particular its Blizzard Entertainment subsidiary engaged in discrimination against female employees and fostered a toxic workplace rife with sexism and harassment. However, at the same time, the EEOC has been working with Activision on a separate lawsuit filed in September that has since resulted in an agreement by both parties to settle for $18 million to be paid out to affected employees.
This is where the entire legal saga has devolved into an utter mess, as the EEOC and the DFEH have begun fighting over the progress of their respective lawsuits and how the settlement in one might affect the progress of the other. The DFEH earlier this month objected to the EEOC settlement, writing in a statement, "The proposed consent decree also contains provisions sanctioning the effective destruction and/or tampering of evidence critical to the DFEH's case, such as personnel files and other documents referencing sexual harassment, retaliation and discrimination."
The EEOC fired back by accusing top lawyers at the DFEH of violating the California Rule of Professional Conduct, revealing in the process that the lawyers in question were formerly employed by the EEOC during the time of its investigation into Activision Blizzard before joining the DFEH. This would be an ethical violation and may seriously damage the agency's case.
"Specifically, two DFEH attorneys — who play leadership roles within the organization — previously served as EEOC who helped to direct the EEOC's investigation into Commissioner's Charge No. 480-2018-05212 against Activision Blizzard, Inc.," read the EEOC's memorandum. "These same attorneys then proceeded to represent DFEH in connection with these intervention proceedings, which seek to oppose the consent decree that arose out of the very investigation they helped to direct while at the EEOC."
Activision now seems to be latching onto this alleged ethical violation as a way to undermine the DFEH lawsuit, which remains ongoing, and even potentially kill it altogether. "Furthermore, if what the EEOC alleges is true, the ethical violation — and potential disqualification — does not end with the two attorneys who previously worked on this matter during their time at the EEOC," reads Activision Blizzard's complaint. If those two attorneys are disqualified, the complaint goes on, then the whole DFEH might be implicated in the alleged conflict of interest.
Twitter's vice president of trust and safety Del Harvey announced Tuesday that she is leaving the company this week after nearly 13 years. Her last day is Friday.
Harvey said her decision was motivated by a desire to spend more time with her family. "Saying this is a difficult decision would be an understatement. That said, it's also the right decision," Harvey wrote. "Right now, I need (and want!) to focus my time and attention on my family; equally, @twittersafety needs (and deserves!) someone who can focus on leading them."
As head of trust and safety, Harvey helped oversee the company's efforts to safeguard elections and deal with other problematic content on the platform, as it seeks to promote "healthy" conversations on Twitter.
Her announcement was met with an outpouring of support from Twitter executives, including Jack Dorsey ("Thank you Del!" Dorsey wrote), as well as other leaders in the online safety space, including Facebook's head of security Nathaniel Gleicher. "You are a huge presence in this space and have done incredible work to protect Twitter users and public debate," Gleicher wrote.
Chinese tech giant Alibaba unveiled a new in-house designed server chip based on technology licensed from Arm, which will be manufactured with the advanced 5-nanometer process, the company said early Tuesday.
"Customizing our own server chips is consistent with our ongoing efforts toward boosting our computing capabilities with better performance and improved energy efficiency," Alibaba Cloud Intelligence President Jeff Zhang said. "We plan to use the chips to support current and future businesses across the Alibaba Group ecosystem."
Called the Yitian 710, the chips will be used to power a forthcoming version of its servers that the company said it will use in its own data centers. Alibaba said it doesn't plan to sell the chips to other companies.
Alibaba's decision arrives amid other large cloud computing providers developing their own processors. Amazon.com has designed and installed custom chips in its data centers, as has Alphabet's Google. There are reports Microsoft is designing its own chips too.
Though custom chips can cost upwards of $500 million to design, big tech companies have the resources available to replace some of the chips in data centers made by Intel and its smaller rival Advanced Micro Devices.
The new Alibaba chip offers a 20% performance boost and 50% more energy efficiency, the company said. Processors made by Arm, which is owned by SoftBank Group, typically use less energy and generate less heat than those based on x86 designs.
Alibaba did not say how it would make the chips, but Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing and Samsung Electronics are the only two companies that can produce 5 nm chips at large scale.
Facebook will pay up to $14.25 million to settle allegations it "routinely refused to recruit, consider or hire U.S. workers" for certain positions, the U.S. Justice Department announced on Tuesday.
The money includes a $4.75 million fine and up to $9.5 million for alleged victims of the discrimination against "U.S. citizens, U.S. nationals, asylees, refugees and lawful permanent residents," the department said. The fine and award are both records for this type of enforcement.
The U.S. had originally sued Facebook, alleging the company "used recruiting methods designed to deter U.S. workers from applying to certain positions" and "reserved jobs for temporary visa holders" as part of a process that required certifying that qualified U.S. workers weren't available and interested in the positions.
Facebook, which also made other commitments such as advertising jobs more broadly, also settled with the Labor Department.
Google is launching a new subscription service designed to both sell its new Pixel 6 smartphone and promote its bevy of existing paid software services. It's called the Pixel Pass, and it bundles a new Google handset with YouTube Premium, YouTube Music Premium, Google Play Pass and Google One cloud storage.
Google is trying to rival both Apple's iPhone Upgrade Program and Apple One bundle, which includes access to Apple's TV and music-streaming services in addition to other benefits. With Pixel Pass, customers will pay $45 or $55, depending on whether they want a Pixel 6 or Pixel 6 Pro, and can upgrade their device after two years. The company announced the new plan on Tuesday during the live stream of its annual fall Pixel hardware event.
Google has very good reason to want its own all-in-one bundle. Tech companies are increasingly building out ecosystems of hardware and software, largely due to Apple's success in transforming its iOS ecosystem into a larger family of products and services that all tie into one another. By promoting one product, companies are more easily able to sell customers on a companion software subscription that works well with that product, as Apple does with its AirPods, HomePod and Apple Music platform.
With bundles, companies like Apple and Google are able to lock in customers and keep them paying a recurring fee in perpetuity, especially as those customers become accustomed to constant access to otherwise paid services that dictate how they get their music and entertainment. That in turn makes it more difficult for customers to switch to competing services in the future.
But Google is going one step further than the competition in unifying a hardware purchase with a software subscription bundle, ensuring customers continue paying for the device and using the provided platforms for years to come. That, too, makes sense: Many of Google's services, even its paid ones, monetize in ways beyond just subscription fees or basic advertising, relying on data collection to help inform Google's broader digital ad empire and to support the moneymaking activities of many of its free services, like Gmail and Google Search.
It's not clear how many customers are eager to wade this far into the Google ecosystem. Though the company is much more optimistic about the sales outlook for the Pixel 6 than for previous iterations, the company's mobile hardware efforts have to date failed to gain anywhere near the traction of the iPhone or Samsung's Galaxy line. Yet for those looking to buy the new Pixel phone, there don't appear to be any deals as tantalizing as the Pixel Pass, marking the start of what could turn into a not-so-walled garden of Google's own.
Nearly 70% of Americans believe there should be stricter content standards on Facebook, including rules that would prevent misinformation and hate speech from proliferating on the platform. The findings come from to a new poll conducted by Morning Consult.
The poll found that Americans also overwhelmingly support a range of congressional actions. Nearly 80% of the people who responded, for instance, said they would support stronger protections for children on social media. Strong majorities also supported congressional action on requiring more transparency into algorithms and internal research.
Respondents also broadly supported the creation of a new independent body of former tech employees that would conduct investigations into the social harms of Facebook's algorithms.
The poll was conducted this month, in the wake of Wall Street Journal's Facebook investigation, which revealed the company's own internal research regarding a wide array of harms of the platform.
Google CEO Sundar Pichai is calling on the U.S. government to create an equivalent to the Geneva Conventions for cyberwarfare, in the wake of increasing attacks from Russia, China and other countries targeting the U.S. and its allies. Pichai made the statement during an interview with the Wall Street Journal at the publication's WSJ Tech Live conference on Monday.
"Governments on a multilateral basis … need to put it up higher on the agenda," Pichai said. "If not, you're going to see more of it because countries would resort to those things." Pichai suggested universal standards of engagement and practice for cyberwarfare could help prevent or slow down some of the more aggressive attacks of late, such as those targeting Microsoft's Outlook software and other products earlier this year.
Pichai's interview was wide ranging, covering not just cybersecurity, but also the transition to remote work during the pandemic, employee activism at Google and more broadly in Silicon Valley, and tech regulation. For instance, Pichai pointed to Europe's GDPR as a model example of informed tech regulation that benefits the whole industry.
"I think the GDPR has been a great foundation," Pichai said. "I would really like to see a federal privacy standard in the U.S." Pichai said the patchwork of state laws "adds a lot of complexity... larger companies can cope with more regulations and entrench themselves, whereas for a smaller company to start, it can be a real tax."
Pichai also spoke at length about the need for the U.S. government to invest in foundational technologies for the future, such as artificial intelligence, quantum computing and semiconductor development, to stay competitive with China and other rivals, as it did in decades past to help build the internet and create universal technology standards.
"The government has limited resources, and it needs to focus... but all of us are benefiting from foundational investments from 20 to 30 years ago, which is what a lot of the modern tech innovation is based on, and we take it for granted a bit," he said. "Public-private partnerships here can be a good template. This is an area where there's bipartisan interest in making sure that we are thinking about it for the long term."
Facebook's Novi digital wallet is now available in most U.S. states and Guatemala in a pilot test of the product, the company said Tuesday. Users can access the platform as a mobile app available on both Apple's App Store and Google Play.
Novi is a rebrand of the Calibra wallet Facebook first announced last year, as part of a larger overhaul and rebranding of Facebook's nascent crypto projects amid intense scrutiny from regulators worldwide. While Facebook is still working on the Diem cryptocurrency (formerly known as Libra) in partnership with members of the Diem Association, it's pushing out Novi now to gather data and test the efficacy of the platform.
"The purpose of the pilot is for us to affirm our operational readiness and show that our Novi systems, such as our customer care response, compliance program, and core features features, are serving customers well," Novi chief David Marcus, the former PayPal executive who for years ran Facebook Messenger before heading up the social network's blockchain division, said in a press release.
More broadly, Facebook is trying to get a foothold in the financial services sector — especially in the developing world — and it sees cryptocurrencies and digital wallets as its best avenue to do so. "Globally, about 1.7 billion adults don't have access to a bank account but could have access to safe and affordable financial service through mobile phones if the right system existed," Marcus said.
For now, Facebook says it is allowing people to send and receive money using the USDP stablecoin operated by blockchain company Paxos and in partnership with Coinbase. In other words, its function right now is to act as an easy way to transfer and hold money, especially in the absence of traditional banking.
Users of Novi can transfer funds into Novi, convert them to USDP (with $1 equaling 1 USDP) and then withdraw any money received in their local currency. Facebook says because USDP is a stablecoin fully backed by the U.S. dollar with cash reserves, it has the necessary regulatory oversight and consumer protections in place to prevent fraud and other potential pitfalls.
Marcus said this does not mean Facebook is distancing itself from the Diem project. "Our support for Diem has not changed," he said. "We see great value in the way Diem is designed with robust protections for consumers and controls to combat financial crime. We intend to migrate Novi to the Diem payment network once it receives regulatory approval." Marcus goes on to write that the goal with Novi is not to have it be used exclusively with Diem, but to be interoperable with other digital wallets.
There are some exceptions to availability for now. The mobile app won't be available to residents of Alaska, Nevada, New York or the U.S. Virgin Islands for now. Signup will require a valid government ID and sending and receiving funds will require both parties have active Novi accounts. Picking up funds can be done in person at a physical location depending on where you live or to a valid bank account.
Correction: A previous version of this article implied Facebook oversees the Diem cryptocurrency project. Like its predecessor Libra, Diem is being developed by a member-based association of multiple stakeholders, of which Facebook is just one.
Invesco won't be launching a futures-backed Bitcoin exchange-traded fund after all, the ETF operator said Monday. Invesco pulled out just one day ahead of asset manager ProShares' debut of the first-ever Bitcoin futures ETF on Tuesday.
"We have determined not to pursue the launch of a Bitcoin futures ETF in the immediate near-term; however we will continue to work in partnership with Galaxy Digital to offer investors full shelf of products with exposure to this transformative asset class, including pursuing a physically backed, digital asset ETF," the company said in a statement to Bloomberg.
Crypto enthusiasts hope a successful Bitcoin ETF could help further legitimize the currency in the eyes of traditional firms and investors. While the currency has experienced a fair amount of volatility this year, peaking at nearly $65,000 in April before a summer crash, it's risen by more than 40% this month and now stands near its all-time high at more than $62,000.
The Securities and Exchange Commission said the January GameStop trading frenzy "tested the capacity and resiliency of our securities market in a way that few could have anticipated," as the agency released its much awaited report on the incident.
"GameStop was just one of many so-called meme stocks that exhibited significant price volatility, trading volume and attention in the markets," SEC Chair Gary Gensler said in a video announcing the release of the report Monday afternoon.
The controversial trades offered "an opportunity to study how we can further ensure that the markets are working for everyday investors," he said.
The 45-page report listed key areas that merit further investigation, including "events that may have caused brokerage firms to restrict trading" and "the use of predictive data analytics to market to each of us differently through digital engagement practices," otherwise known as gamification.
A website that tracks Apple's App Store globally has reported a recent slate of takedowns of Quran and Bible-related apps in China.
Apple Censorship, a site that tracks changes to what's available in the U.S.-based tech giant's App Stores, reports a number of recent deletions in mainland China. According to that site, those include the following:
- Oct. 8: The widely used Quran Majeed was removed.
- Oct. 8: Muslim Pro, another popular app that tracks Muslim prayer times, was removed.
- Oct. 8: Bible App by Olive Tree, a popular Bible study guide, was removed.
Facebook has made a series of increasingly aggressive statements in recent weeks, attempting to undermine The Wall Street Journal's reporting on thousands of pages of leaked internal documents. On Monday, the company tried a new approach, chastising reporters for such indiscretions as … collaborating and agreeing to press embargoes.
"Right now 30+ journalists are finishing up a coordinated series of articles based on thousands of pages of leaked documents," Facebook's vice president of communications, John Pinette, wrote in a tweet Monday. "We hear that to get the docs, outlets had to agree to the conditions and a schedule laid down by the PR team that worked on earlier leaked docs."
Pinette accused these the journalists working on this project of engaging in a "gotcha" campaign.
Reporters and former Facebook employees alike were quick to point out the fact that agreeing to conditions around how and when information can be quoted and referenced is something Facebook asks reporters to do on a near daily basis.
Others just appreciated the notice:
The Netflix trans employee resource group released a list of demands to the company ahead of a planned Wednesday walkout over the controversial Dave Chappelle special "The Closer," asking for increased investment in trans-affirming content and recruitment of trans leaders, adding disclaimers and labels for transphobic content and other changes.
Leaders of the Trans* ERG are planning a walkout Wednesday to protest the company's streaming of "The Closer" and the firing of one of the walkout's organizers, who was dismissed after the company suspected they leaked streaming data about the comedy special.
The demands, first reported by The Verge, do not ask for the removal of the Chappelle special. They do insist that Netflix "acknowledge the harm and Netflix's responsibility for this harm from transphobic content, and in particular harm to the Black trans community," which appears directly aimed at co-CEO Ted Sarandos' statement last week that the company does not believe "The Closer" directly causes real-world harm or violence.
"We are employees, but we are members, too. We believe that this Company can and must do better in our quest to entertain the world, and that the way forward must include more diverse voices in order to avoid causing more harm," the walkout organizers wrote in their statement.
NOTE: Protocol has agreed to be acquired by Axel Springer, whose Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Mathias Döpfner, is on the board of Netflix.
Informatica is aiming to raise as much as $928 million in its pending public offering, according to a federal filing on Monday.
The IPO comes as vendors that help companies manage their corporate information report huge funding rounds and double-digit growth year-over-year.
New York Attorney General Letitia James is investigating crypto lending platforms, calling them "high-risk virtual currency schemes."
James has ordered two unnamed companies to cease and desist operations for residents of New York. She has ordered three other companies to provide information to her office.
While the two companies ordered to cease operations were not named, unredacted file names of the letters name the two companies as Nexo and Celsius. Nexo said in a tweet that it does not offer its Earn product to New Yorkers.
These products are essentially unregistered interest-bearing accounts, James alleged. "Virtual or 'crypto' currency lending platforms are essentially interest-bearing accounts that offer investors a rate of return on virtual currencies that are deposited with them."
N26 has raised more than $900 million in a series E round that values the German challenger bank at more than $9 billion, the company said Monday.
The funding round was led by Third Point Ventures and Coatue Management. N26 said it now has more than 7 million customers in 25 countries. The company said it expects to record more than $90 billion in transaction volume in 2021.
The investment underscores the growth of the digital banking industry, where N26 competes with startups like Chime and Current.