10 things in tech you need to know today
Good morning! This is the tech news you need to know this Friday.
- Someone emailed bomb threats around different locations in the US, threatening to detonate if they weren’t given payment in bitcoin. New York’s police department said the threats were not credible.
- Wired took an in-depth look at what it is like to work for Elon Musk, and uncovered a mercurial character prone to random firing sprees. Employees nicknamed these sprees “Elon’s rage firings.”
- Facebook has been slammed by current and former fact-checkers for using them as “crisis PR” rather than to genuinely combat misinformation. Two former employees for the fact-checking site Snopes said Facebook threw fact-checkers under the bus when their work prompted a backlash.
- Vint Cerf, one of the fathers of the internet, this week defended Google’s work on Project Maven — its controversial pilot program with the Pentagon. Employees that objected to the company’s work for the Defense Department didn’t really understand the nature of the work or its benefits, Cerf, a vice president at the search giant and its chief internet evangelist, told Business Insider this week.
- An in-depth look into the sale of media darling Mic reveals how the publisher was overly reliant on Facebook. Mic was sold for a fraction of its presumed value earlier this month.
- Apple seems to be killing off Apple Music Connect, a way for artists to reach fans directly through the Apple Music app. The firm is no longer letting artists posts, and is removing previously posted content.
- Cloud startup Mesosphere, most recently valued at $725 million in a funding round this year, is getting a new CEO. Replacing him will be Mike Fey, most recently president and COO of Symantec, in a move that the company says will help it achieve the next stage of growth by going after larger customers.
- A founder who survived the Chinese bike-sharing bubble is launching a scooter startup, and reckons it’s a $35 billion market. Former Ofo exec Maxim Romain has cofounded Dott, a European scooter startup that will compete with the likes of Bird and Lime.
- Lyft has hired bicycle and transit activist Caroline Samponaro as its new head of policy for bikes, scooters, and transportation. She’ll work alongside former US transportation secretary Anthony Foxx to help convince riders to ditch cars.
- The studio behind major “Call of Duty” games like “Modern Warfare” and “Infinite Warfare” was evacuated on Thursday. Police reportedly arrived on Thursday morning and informed the staff of a bomb threat, alongside a string of bomb threats across the US.
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