Big Tech is shrinking. Good.

#Web3Weekly: Jan. 22–28, 2023

“800 Pounds of Connectivity” by Peter A. McKay × DALL·E
  • Google is laying off staff and fighting a new antitrust suit from U.S. regulators over its advertising practices.
  • Meta is facing formidable new competition from Apple, which plans to launch a headset for metaverse apps. But this might also prove to be a problem for Apple, considering how disastrously the “pivot” to a metaverse strategy has gone for Meta, formerly known as Facebook. Maybe Apple has discovered something Meta hasn’t, or maybe this just isn’t a product with mass appeal.
  • An anti-hate group filed a lawsuit against Twitter in Germany for lax policing of antisemitic content, including holocaust denial.
  • Microsoft was a rare positive, announcing decent earnings and a $10 billion investment in OpenAI. However, it has also announced layoffs and suffered during the longer tech bear market, down 20% in the past 12 months.
  • Amazon is still implementing its previously announced layoff of 18,000 workers.
  • Big Tech has lead the broader decline in stocks. The Nasdaq 100 Index, which tracks the largest U.S. tech companies, is down 19% in the past 12 months, compared to a 10% decline in the S&P 500.
  • Bitcoin is on pace for its best January since 2013, up about 40% so far, according to CoinDesk.
  • Founder Vitalik Buterin proposed a system of “stealth addresses” to improve the Ethereum network’s privacy.
  • Over 80% of Uniswap community members favor deploying the popular decentralized finance protocol on BNB Chain, giving users an alternative to the Ethereum version.
  • U.S. authorities announced they have infiltrated and dismantled the Hive ransomware network. It extracted more than $100 million in crypto payments from victims, the Justice Department said.
  • Glassnode analyst James Check discussed the best practices for securing crypto in 2023 in an interview with Cointelegraph.
  • CoinDesk’s content chief Mike Casey noticed a certain aversion to the word “crypto” at the World Economic Forum’s recent Davos conference. Companies in the industry are increasingly trying to re-brand away from it, due to negative connotations from the bear market, he said.
  • Comic book artist Sean Chen, known for illustrating Iron Man, the Avengers, Spider-Man, and more, is launching a new NFT-driven comic line. Chen called web3 a “paradigm shift” for creators in an interview with Decrypt.
  • YouTube channel Star Wars Theory queried ChatGPT about fixing Disney-era storylines that have divided fans. Verdict: This might be the droid we’re looking for.



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Peter A. McKay

I publish the newsletter #Web3Weekly. Former Head of Content & Writer Development at Capsule Social. Other priors: WSJ, Washington Post, and Vice News.