Illustration of a foot with an SEC sock stepping on a coin that reads "crypto"
Illustration: iStock/Getty Images Plus; Protocol

The SEC tightens its grip

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Good morning! The crypto industry has been pressing the government to place stricter rules on crypto. But according to Gary Gensler, he already laid out the rules; it’s not his fault the industry just doesn’t like ’em.

Gensler’s final say

SEC Chair Gary Gensler is putting his foot down on crypto regulation. Speaking at a conference of attorneys, he made his view clear: Most tokens are securities, not commodities.

Crypto firms need to register with the SEC, Gensler said yesterday; the agency’s oversight shouldn’t change if a token is “based on a new technology.”

  • Bitcoin and ether may be an exception to this rule, but that conversation will continue next week when a Senate committee holds a hearing on a bill that would declare both as commodities under the CFTC’s purview.

This might sound familiar. The SEC had previously asserted in lawsuits that several cryptocurrencies are securities, stoking the anger of the crypto industry for regulating by enforcement rather than creating new rules.

  • The Treasury Department is also putting pressure on the White House for more crypto regulation, warning in four separate reports this month that the risks of digital assets outweigh the benefits.

Gensler’s tough stance is significant: It’s the biggest step the SEC has taken so far to tighten its reins on the crypto industry, signaling that the SEC is done being badgered by the industry for meticulous and detailed guidance. “Not liking the message isn’t the same thing as not receiving it,” Gensler said.

  • “Gensler is like the government equivalent of me telling my kids, ‘No matter how many times you ask, you are not getting ice cream for dinner. I said what I said, stop asking and leave me alone,’” Protocol Policy editor Kate Cox told me.

At the end of the day, though, Gensler doesn’t get the final say anyway. Congress and the courts will also have a chance to weigh in on how crypto regulations evolve. But it’s plain to see that he and the SEC are tired of the crypto industry’s pushback.

— Nat Rubio-Licht

What is Gen Z anyway?

Meagan Loyst, the founder of Gen Z VCs, understandably gets lots of questions about Gen Z. How should managers balance face time and mentorship? What does this TikTok trend mean? Does the generation actually hate remote work? As for the last question, Loyst doesn’t think so. And there are many other things that founders misunderstand about Gen Z that she’d like to clear up.

I talked with Loyst about Gen Z VCs and how she connects with companies to help them better recruit and retain younger workers. You can read the full interview here, but here are some choice cuts:

  • Gen Zs don’t actually hate remote work: “One to two days in the office isn’t a bad thing. But you just have to understand that from the perspective of a Gen Z employee, we did not grow up in a world where you had to be in an office five days a week.”
  • They don’t always mesh with the traditional workforce: “The Gen Z ethos is all about disrupting the status quo, being entrepreneurial, being creative …”
  • Let them do their side hustle: “Maybe that's writing content, maybe that's filming videos on TikTok. That might not fall under their specific job description, but it might be really important for their personal development.”

— Sarah Roach

The chip dip

The chip industry is experiencing some whiplash, as the business has ricocheted from record sales and profit during the chip shortage to what is looking more like a down cycle with each passing week.

Semiconductors have been a boom-bust business for decades, and the industry is in a bit of disarray at the moment: Companies up and down the chip food chain are moving to adapt their businesses to rapidly changing conditions.

  • The Semiconductor Industry Association said Tuesday that overall July sales dropped 2.3% to $49 billion compared with June.
  • At an investor conference in New York Wednesday Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger said the company now expects annual revenue to be roughly $11 billion less than the annual revenue guidance of $76 billion it issued in April.
  • Gelsinger acknowledged problems Intel had delivering on its promises; he said the damage from Ukraine war-related fallout, China’s COVID-19 lockdowns and inflation in the U.S. are the main three factors at play.

The choppy market goes well beyond what Intel is experiencing. In a recent earnings call Nvidia warned of a tough third quarter, and Samsung warned of a tough finish to 2022.

  • “Demand is down big time,” said Matt Murphy, CEO of data center chipmaker Marvell, at another bank’s conference Wednesday according to a transcript from Sentieo.
  • “There's definitely churn, in every end market, let's be clear,” Murphy said. “You've got what you've guided and talked about. And then underneath, it's like the duck going across the water.”

A longer version of this story first appeared in our Enterprise newsletter. Read it here.

— Max A. Cherney (email | twitter)

A MESSAGE FROM CAPITAL ONE SOFTWARE

Capital One’s adoption of modern cloud and data capabilities led us to create tools to operate at scale in the cloud. Capital One Software is bringing these solutions to market to help you accelerate your cloud and data journey. Get started with Slingshot, a data management solution for Snowflake customers.

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People are talking

Bob Iger doesn’t think moviegoing will ever return to pre-pandemic levels:

  • “It doesn’t mean moviegoing goes away. I’m a big believer in movies. I love big movies … but it doesn’t come back to where it was.”

Dell CFO Tom Sweet said PC supply chains are stabilizing:

  • “There’s always going to be some issues in that chain, but in general from our perspective, it’s operating more like the historical norm.”

Sen. Marco Rubio is worried about Apple using a controversial Chinese chip manufacturer to procure chips for its new iPhone:

  • “Apple is playing with fire. It knows the security risks posed by [Yangtze Memory Technologies].”

Customer experience in the enterprise

Join us at 11 a.m. PT Sept. 19, where we'll dive into the tech tools and tricks and real-life strategies that companies are using to build a CX tech ecosystem and prepare for an increasingly customer-first future.

RSVP here.

Making moves

Joe Biden is heading to Intel’s chip factory in Ohio today for its groundbreaking ceremony. It's part of a pre-midterms push to talk up new funding for manufacturing and infrastructure.

Chris Lister reportedly left Tesla's Gigafactory this summer, and Hrushikesh Sagar was promoted to oversee the battery plant. Lister was VP of Gigafactory operations.

Guillaume Bailliard is Formlabs’ new president of health care. Bailliard is a former GE Healthcare leader.

Filiz Genca is CareRev’s new COO. Genca previously worked at Amazon leading HR tech, Amazon Go and other parts of Amazon’s retail business.

In other news

Coinbase is funding a lawsuit against the Treasury Department that claims the government overstepped in sanctioning Tornado Cash.

Meta cut its Responsible Innovation team, which focused on addressing issues with new products. The team included two dozen engineers and ethicists who partnered with product teams.

The White House praised “bipartisan interest in Congress” in data privacy despite the associated bill’s slowdown by Nancy Pelosi and others. It also announced six tech policy proposals aimed at competition, algorithms and safety.

Twitter agreed to pay whistleblower Peiter Zatko $7 million related to lost compensation. The settlement came days before Zatko filed his complaint against the company.

The Senate Judiciary Committee delayed voting on a bill that would allow news organizations to earn more revenue from Google and Meta.

Elizabeth Holmes argued in a filing that letting Sunny Balwani’s trial go second put her at a disadvantage. It’s the latest in a series of many motions that she’s filed recently.

Some websites won't let you log in with Facebook anymore for privacy reasons. Match, Twitch, Nike and Pottery Barn are just a few making the switch.

Twitter reportedly experienced intermittent outages yesterday following a spike in traffic after the British royal family announced the death of Queen Elizabeth II.

Salesforce and NBCUniversal are creating a docuseries together for CNBC as part of a seven-year deal the two struck around the Olympics.

Join us at SALT

The SALT NY conference kicks off Monday, Sept. 12, with 2,500 investors, entrepreneurs, policymakers and industry leaders gathering at the Javits Center for three days of collaboration focused on disruptive innovation. Protocol Senior Editor Owen will moderate a panel on the future of Bitcoin and ways to grow the network sustainably.

Learn more and register to attend.

Pizza by the pod

Your food delivery may soon show up by driverless pod. Uber Eats entered a 10-year partnership with Nuro, an autonomous vehicle startup, after four years of on-and-off negotiations between the companies. Starting this fall, Uber and Nuro will send the startup’s driverless pod cars to deliver orders in Houston and Mountain View. Sorry to all the pizza delivery drivers out there — you will be missed.

A MESSAGE FROM CAPITAL ONE SOFTWARE

Capital One’s adoption of modern cloud and data capabilities led us to create tools to operate at scale in the cloud. Capital One Software is bringing these solutions to market to help you accelerate your cloud and data journey. Get started with Slingshot, a data management solution for Snowflake customers.

Learn more

Thoughts, questions, tips? Send them to sourcecode@protocol.com, or our tips line, tips@protocol.com. Enjoy your day, see you Sunday.

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