Meerkat was the darling of SXSW in 2015. Here’s why it pivoted three months later and became HouseParty.
- But this year at SXSW, Meerkat’s founder Ben Rubin was happy just hanging out.
- On the latest episode of Recode Media with Peter Kafka, Rubin reflected on why, just months after SXSW 2015, he pivoted the Meerkat team away from livestreaming into a different product, HouseParty.
- The mobile broadcasting model — later mimicked by Facebook Live, Facebook-owned Instagram and Twitter-owned Periscope, among others — wasn’t good for making “meaningful connections,” Rubin noted.
- You can listen to Recode Media on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Pocket Casts, Overcast or wherever you listen to podcasts.
- On the new podcast, Rubin said the thing he cares most about HouseParty creating is a sense of “presence” among the app’s users — a technological fascimilie of hanging out in the same room with other people, including not-close friends.
- Now it’s also suing Bumble.
Facebook has suspended Cambridge Analytica, the data analytics firm that helped Donald Trump get elected
- Facebook on Friday suspended accounts for Strategic Communication Laboratories, the parent company of Cambridge Analytica, the data analytics firm used by Donald Trump’s presidential campaign ahead of the 2016 presidential election.
- The suspension was issued because Cambridge Analytica received Facebook data from hundreds of thousands of users in a way that violated Facebook’s guidelines, the company said Friday in a blog post.
- Why this matters: Cambridge Analytica, which The Washington Post describes as “specializing in using online data to create voter personality profiles,” was used by the Trump campaign during his run to the White House in 2016.
- It’s also unclear if Cambridge Analytica is still working with the Trump White House, or is helping with his re-election campaign.
Tinder’s parent company, Match Group, is suing dating app Bumble for patent infringement
- Match Group, the online dating company that owns services like Tinder and Match.com, wants to buy Bumble, another popular dating app that lets women make the first move.
- But Match may be trying to push the deal along in an unconventional way: A new patent infringement lawsuit filed late Friday in U.S. District court in Waco, Texas.
- Match Group is suing Bumble for infringing on two of its patents, including a design patent for Tinder’s now-famous swipe-to-connect feature, according to the suit.
- Match also claims that early Bumble executives Chris Gulczynski and Sarah Mick, who both previously worked at Tinder, stole “confidential information related to proposed Tinder features,” including the idea for a feature that lets users go back if they accidentally skip someone, according to the suit.
- The easiest way to make it a patent infringement suit go away would be to join the company that owns the patent.
Zuora is the latest tech company to file for IPO early this year
- The enterprise company Zuora on Friday said it had filed to go public, yet another IPO for a highly-valued tech company during a winter when companies apparently feel the markets are pretty friendly.
- Zuora, which provides billing and other services to subscription software companies, is backed by some high-profile venture capital firms, most prominently Benchmark Capital, which owns about 11 percent of the company, according to Zuora’s SEC filing.
- The company notched almost $180 million in the last fiscal year, the company said, and was valued at around $750 million during its last round of financing in 2015, according to PitchBook.
- It’s the latest tech company to file in a rush of high-profile IPOs at the start of 2018.
- And on Friday, another tech company, Zscaler, saw the price of its shares double on its first day in public markets.
Former Uber exec Aaron Schildkrout is joining the board of bike-sharing startup Jump
- The top ranks at most of the bike-sharing companies are littered with Uber and Lyft alumni, and now Jump, which has a partnership with Uber, is bringing on Aaron Schildkrout, Uber’s former head of driver product, to help advise the company as an independent board director.
- There is also Davis Wang, the CEO of dockless bike-sharing company Mobike, and Chris Taylor, an executive at Chinese bike share company Ofo. Schildkrout, who first came into contact with the Jump team at Uber while members of his team negotiated the partnership, is joining its five-member board, which includes Jump CEO Ryan Rzepecki and Menlo Ventures partner Shawn Carolan, who led his firm’s investment in Uber.
- Dockless bike- and scooter-sharing companies have seen intense momentum in the last 18 months, with investors pouring funds into the space.
- Dockless bike and scooter sharing is a highly capital-intensive industry — given the costs of operating a fleet of bikes.
Full transcript: Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes on Recode Decode
- On this episode of Recode Decode, hosted by Kara Swisher, Chris Hughes, the co-founder of Facebook and former owner of The New Republic, talks about his new book, “Fair Shot: Rethinking Inequality and How We Earn.” In it, Hughes argues that working people should receive a guaranteed income, paid for by the top 1 percent of earners in the U.S. You can read a write-up of the interview here or listen to the whole thing in the audio player above.
- He’s also the author of a new book called “Fair Shot: Rethinking Inequality and How We Earn.” It argues that working people should receive a guaranteed income, sometimes called Universal Basic Income, paid for by the 1 percent like Chris himself.
Here’s what you need to know about the U.S. lawsuit against the AT&T-Time Warner merger
- If, however, you believe President Trump is just trying to punish CNN with the suit, then you’d also have to think these other media deals are safe, since, in the Disney-Fox case, Trump is an avowed fan of anything Rupert Murdoch owns, specifically Fox News, and so is happy for him to succeed; in the CBS-Viacom merger, neither side has been a target of Trump’s ire, despite the reporting of CBS News.
- It included him on its witness list, and asked the court to compel the Justice Department to provide any communications it had with the White House via emails and phone logs about the merger, part of an effort to show Trump may have prompted the suit because of his feelings toward CNN.
The $10 billion opportunity at Reuters
- Over the years, the financial data part of the business grew to dwarf the news business, and the billions of dollars in revenue thrown off by financial terminals have helped to pay for a global news operation that now employs more than 3,000 journalists in some 200 locations around the world.
- But once the terminal business becomes controlled by Blackstone, led by Stephen Schwarzman rather than by Thomson Reuters, that business has much less incentive to pay Reuters hundreds of millions of dollars a year for its news.
- There’s only one option, then, for the Reuters leadership: To declare that “no effort shall be spared to expand, develop and adapt the news and other services and products of Thomson Reuters so as to maintain its leading position in the international news and information business.” That shouldn’t be too hard, since it’s right there in the organization’s foundational Trust Principles.
Author Claire Evans wants you to know about the women who helped found the internet
- That’s why Evans set out to highlight the women who helped make the internet in her new book, “Broad Band: The Untold Story of the Women Who Made the Internet,” a series of biographical essays about important women in tech history the Wall Street Journal called “engaging,” while also “too-often fannish,” in its review.
- Was it hard to write a book about women in tech that focuses on the past when there’s so much happening in the present?
- And there’s maybe like a few hundred people that still use it, but this kind of dedication towards long-term care and really owning the responsibility of the platform you create, I think it’s something that is so powerful and I value that.
- I mean, it’s very difficult to do that, I know, because the entire industry is built on obsolescence and constant reinvention, but with [the women in the book], there’s a certain level of mindfulness for the long-term and for care.
Recode Daily: With a subpoena, special counsel Robert Mueller brings the Russia investigation closer to President Trump
- Giving patients control of their health information will help give patients control of their health, posit senior presidential adviser Jared Kushner and federal Medicare and Medicaid administrator Seema Verma, who argued for progress in digital health care data in a Recode op-ed yesterday.
- Google, Amazon and Microsoft’s cloud businesses helped more than double spending on data centers last year.
- On the latest Too Embarrassed to Ask, SB Nation editor in chief Elena Bergeron talks about brackets, streaming apps and paying players.
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- SB Nation editor in chief Elena Bergeron talks about brackets, streaming apps and paying players on the latest Too Embarrassed to Ask. Meet the founder behind a rare e-commerce success story.