Discover more from Beautiful Scoop
Anti-TikTok and Anti-Trust
Friday, August 18th, 2023
1. FTX Founder's 'Jailhouse Rock'
Sam Bankman-Fried, the brilliantly fraudulent mind behind the cryptocurrency exchange FTX (that collapsed totally spectacularly), has been sentenced to jail. Apparently, a federal judge just couldn't resist taking away the privilege of house arrest at his parents' oh-so-opulent palace in the Bahamas. The judge accused Bankman-Fried of trying to exercise witness manipulation, claiming he'd been handing out documents to reporters in order to push a certain narrative. Just your typical "let's intimidate the witnesses" strategy. And let's not forget the moment when U.S. marshals relieved Bankman-Fried of his tie and suit jacket before escorting him to the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn. His lawyers are, of course, planning to appeal because everyone knows an inmate's life is just not complete without a good old jailhouse appeal. But hey, at least he'll have plenty of time to prepare for his upcoming trial – from the comfort of his newly adorned jail cell. So long, cryptocurrency kingpin, and hello, orange jumpsuit chic!
2. Intel's $5.4 Billion Chip Dream Crushed
Intel's grand plans to modernize its chip manufacturing have hit a pothole with the crash and burn of their $5.4 billion Tower Semiconductor acquisition. Remember, this wasn't just any old purchase; it was supposed to give Intel custom silicon, or as we like to call it, the "good stuff." The deal's demise, thanks to regulatory issues (looking at you, China), has left Intel's modernization strategy feeling like a deflated balloon at a birthday party where the clown passed out before making a single balloon animal. The company's dreams of catching up to industry competitors have been smacked with reality, and they might just have to learn how to blow up their own balloon animals – uh, I mean, develop their own in-house expertise. So, here's to Intel, the kid whose Tower of dreams just came crumbling down like a house of cards, all because China and the U.S. can't agree on who gets the last piece of silicon cake.
Thanks for reading! Subscribe for free to receive 5 stories in 5 minutes, every Friday.
3. Congressman Bacon vs. Chinese Spies': The Month-long Inbox Invasion
US Congressman Don Bacon revealed that he's the latest star in China's thrilling hacking saga, as he bravely announced that Chinese spies infiltrated his email... and had access for a whole month. Bacon attributed the breach to a teensy-weensy "vulnerability" in Microsoft software (which isn't the first time we've heard of a Microsoft-sized lapse in cybersecurity. Remember just last month when this vulenerability reportedly resulted in the theft of hundreds of thousands of emails from senior U.S. officials, including U.S. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo and U.S. Ambassador to China Nicholas Burns? It's reported that information relating to Bacon's personal banking, political strategy and campaign fundraising was compromised. And we're thankful to hear that because a gripping tale of espionage is exactly what we needed this week.
4. New York City: To TikTok or Not TikTok?
New York City has declared war on TikTok by banning it on government devices due to "security concerns." The city is now in the expanding company of other U.S. metropolises that believe banning TikTok, which is used by more than 150 million Americans and is owned by Chinese tech giant ByteDance, will shore up any and all vulnerabilities in their digital networks. The ban means that city employees will soon be forced to confront the horror of not dancing awkwardly in 15-second loops while at work, a true tragedy in the making. In related news, a survey revealed that close to half of American adults are supportive of a ban.
5. Pinterest Directors Bid Farewell to Nextdoor Board Amidst Antitrust Antics.
Two directors from Pinterest have graciously stepped down from Nextdoor's board of directors, all thanks to the U.S. Justice Department's valiant efforts to prevent directors from holding similar board positions at rival companies. The Justice Department, ever the vigilant guardian of fairness, declared that these two directors made their exit without admitting any wrongdoing—because um, why would they? This move comes as part of a trend in antitrust enforcement, reminding us all that even in the cutthroat world of corporate competition, we should still play nice and not share our toys—or board seats. The names of these directors are remain shrouded in mystery... who doesn't love a little collusion, right?