The audio revival starts here
Image: Bruce Mars / Protocol
Good morning! This Tuesday, we're presumably all still happy-crying about people finally getting COVID vaccines, right? But also, the social-audio space is heating up, Apple's making developers mad about privacy and Larry Ellison says "mahalo" now.
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Audio is having a bit of a moment. Which seems odd, given that in many ways it seems like a step backward from all the video and VR and AR tools being built right now. But, from Clubhouse to Discord to Twitter's upcoming Audio Spaces to the general ongoing explosion in podcasts, audio's still here.
First, you need to get over your preconceptions. The whole social-audio space can sound a little Russ Hanneman, "I put radio on the internet"-ish. But some folks are starting to see it differently. And Capiche — a new service that's sort of a cross between talk radio and conference calls, which CEO Austin Petersmith calls "Twitch for audio" — is trying to take advantage.
There are still plenty of kinks to be worked out. Capiche is still early in thinking about business models — which already include ways for show hosts to charge subscribers, a la Substack — and about moderation. So far, Petersmith said, there hasn't been much Clubhouse-style controversy on Capiche; it's mostly just people chatting on the phone with their friends in front of an audience. But, he said, "I've just seen so many people thinking about it too late."
Audio deserves its space in every social app, for a variety of reasons: It works in the background, it doesn't really matter where you are, and we all have Zoom fatigue. It's also real-time and low-stress, which are two things that don't often come together online. "Turn the camera off sometimes" is becoming go-to remote work advice, and the same will go for life outside the virtual office too.
A lot of developers are anxious about what Apple's new privacy labels will do to business. I mean, when there's a big box in your App Store listing that says "Data Used to Track You," some would-be users are going to get nervous. Which is, of course, exactly the point.
If you're a developer, you should continue to think about exactly what data you collect, and how you explain it. Because Apple's going out of its way to make data-collection look scary to your potential users.
Oracle may be "moving" to Texas, but Larry Ellison has other plans:
Pinterest and Françoise Brougher settled a gender-discrimination lawsuit for $22.5 million, and Brougher said she hopes it's just the beginning:
Timnit Gebru said that Google's non-response to her firing is indicative of bigger problems:
Building a delivery app for Venezuela wasn't as simple as copying Uber Eats, Yummy's Vicente Zavarce said:
Join us today at 9:30 a.m. PT/12:30 p.m. ET for a deep dive discussion into what lies ahead for this unprecedented medical, logistical, technical and political challenge. Protocol will host a panel conversation with ESRI's chief medical officer Este Geraghty, WHO's assistant director general Samira Asma Yale's director of the institute for global health Saad Omer and Direct Relief's VP of research and analysis Andrew Schroeder, as well as a sponsored keynote interview with Salesforce's Dr. Ashwini Zenooz. This event is presented by Salesforce.
WeCommerce went public through a SPAC, giving Andrew Wilkinson and Tiny Capital its first public company. WeCommerce owns Pixel Union, Yopify and a bunch of other Shopify-related companies.
Roblox bought Loom.ai, a startup working on 3D avatars. The goal is to bring real-time facial expressions and emotions to Roblox characters everywhere. No chance that'll turn out creepy at all.
Jen Rubio and Stewart Butterfield announced they're having a baby. (And shared the news with an awesome picture straight out of a Christmas movie poster.) Congrats, you two!
Starting today through the New Year, we'll be featuring some tech execs' favorite holiday food stories and recipes. Want in on the action? Send yours to email@example.com, or just reply to this email!
First up, its Amazon public policy VP Brian Huseman's cookies: "I grew up in a small town in Oklahoma and a favorite family holiday tradition was for my mom, my brother and I to get together to bake cookies. We particularly liked Hello Dolly cookies (I wasn't sure where the name came from when I was young, but research now tells me it came from the musical). As was appropriate in rural Oklahoma at the time, we used old-fashioned sweetened condensed milk. Christmas season doesn't start in my family until the first batch of Hello Dolly cookies come out of the oven!"
Want to make Brian's go-to cookies? Here's the recipe. Let us know how they turn out!
Join us today 9:30 a.m. PT/12:30 p.m. ET for a deep dive discussion into what lies ahead for this unprecedented medical, logistical, technical and political challenge. Protocol will host a panel conversation with ESRI's chief medical officer Este Geraghty, WHO's assistant director general Samira Asma, Yale's director of the institute for global health Saad Omer and Direct Relief's VP of research and analysis Andrew Schroeder, as well as a sponsored keynote interview with Salesforce's Dr. Ashwini Zenooz. This event is presented by Salesforce.
Today's Source Code was written by David Pierce, with help from Anna Kramer and Shakeel Hashim. Thoughts, questions, tips? Send them to firstname.lastname@example.org, or our tips line, email@example.com. Enjoy your day; see you tomorrow.