June 13, 2022
Illustration: Christopher T. Fong/Protocol
Good morning! Celsius is freezing accounts because of "extreme market conditions," and tech platforms are going to face some scrutiny as the Jan. 6 hearings resume this week. Thanks for joining us this Monday! Let’s jump in.
Crypto’s plunging to new lows, inflation is soaring, and Celsius is the new casualty.
The crypto lending firm froze withdrawals, swaps and transfers between accounts last night.
Celsius has gotten some heat over the past couple months from regulators, prompting the firm to stop offering some accounts a short time ago.
So what’s next? Celsius is trying to start withdrawals, swaps and transfers again “as quickly as possible.” And Nexo says it wants to buy assets from Celsius. But that’s really beside the point: We’re in a crypto winter, and Celsius is in it too.
The House Select Committee on Jan. 6 has three hearings scheduled this week, and Big Tech can expect to take some heat.
The hearings will detail how social platforms were used to plan the insurrection. The committee has demanded documents from Facebook, YouTube and dozens of other tech and telecom companies.
Tech platforms will probably get the most attention today. Rep. Liz Cheney says today’s hearing will cover what Donald Trump knew about the election and what Cheney called his "massive effort to spread false and fraudulent information.
At the same time that the pandemic demonstrated all that is possible in an interconnected world, we saw in new and increasingly stark ways how certain communities continue to be marginalized and harmed by a persistent digital divide and how effectively that divide exacerbates our society’s other inequities.
Tim Cook is urging Congress to pass data privacy legislation:
a16z’s Sriram Krishnan thinks Web3 will help the creator economy:
White House climate adviser Gina McCarthy says social platforms need to do more to combat misinformation:
Cisco Live 2022 started yesterday through Thursday.
London Tech Week begins today. Hillary Clinton is one of the featured speakers.
SOVO’s Climate Tech Meetup is happening today. Founders will network with teams from HAX and IndieBio.
The Future of SaaS Festival starts tomorrow. Industry leaders from Amazon, Google and Stripe will be speaking.
Viva Technology kicks off Wednesday in Paris and runs through Saturday.
Meta is reportedly investigating Sheryl Sandberg over her use of company resources for personal projects.
Tesla will ask shareholders to approve a 3-1 stock split. Tesla’s stock has skyrocketed by more than 40% since its last stock split in August 2020.
Google suspended a researcher who claimed the company's AI Bot had become lifelike. The company put him on paid leave for sharing confidential information with third parties.
Activision Blizzard will start negotiating with the CWA on a collective bargaining agreement for video game testers at its Raven Software subsidiary.
Amazon Prime Members are suing Amazon for ending free Whole Foods delivery. It's $9.95 per order now.
Apple is finally in compliance with Dutch regulators’ antitrust requirements. The company, which has to allow Dutch dating apps to enable third-party payment systems, has been racking up fines while it updated its rules.
Google will pay $118 million to settle a gender discrimination lawsuit over pay equity filed on behalf of 15,500 female employees.
Coinbase employees pushed the company to remove three leaders over actions “that have led to questionable results.” CEO Brian Armstrong called the demands “really dumb on multiple levels.”
Streaming devices play ads even when a television is off, a new study found, meaning that a large chunk of ads are never actually seen by viewers. The issue is costing brands an estimated $1 billion per year.
Jack Dorsey is predicting Web3’s demise before it even gets off the ground. He just announced Web5, an “extra decentralized web platform” built by TBD, a bitcoin-focused Block subsidiary. The “extra” decentralized part means that Web5 won’t allow people to invest in tokens — a key difference from Web3. “RIP Web3 VCs,” Dorsey tweeted. You might be wondering: What happened to Web4? Well, Web5 is a combination of Web2 and Web3 (2+3=5). Or maybe Dorsey was simply thinking of this classic headline from The Onion.
There is so much more we need to do to make sure our future is more equitable and inclusive and maximizes America’s potential. It is not enough just to ensure everyone is connected. We also need to extend the full scope of digital opportunity to the people, the communities, and the institutions.
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