TWiG 773 transcript

Please be advised this transcript is AI-generated and may not be word for word. Time codes refer to the approximate times in the ad-supported version of the show.

0:00:00 - Leo Laporte
It's time for Twink. This week at Google, Paris Martin knows here Jeff Jarvis coming up three stories that raised our blood pressure. We're mad as heck and we're not going to take it anymore. Take that Surgeon General Vivek Murthy. Also, TWA is back. What it's all coming up next on Twink Podcasts you love. From people you trust.

This is twit this is twig this week in google, episode 773, recorded wednesday, june 19th, 2024. Mouse jigglers and keyboard strokers. It's time for Twink this week and giggles and Googles and general stuff. Paris Martineau is here from the information. Hello, paris, hello. I look forward all week to this show because I get together with you and the wonderful Jeff Jarvis and we get to just kind of hang and talk about stuff we're interested in.

That's why it's no longer. And at Eric's there's a certain group of people who are very how should I say this? Concrete, no concrete. And they say the show is named this Week in Google. If you do not talk about Google, you must rename the show.

0:01:27 - Jeff Jarvis
All right, let me speak to them all right now. Okay, because I look through everything I can find. I search for Google News every week and I was just thinking this week that if this show were restricted to Google A, it wouldn't exist anymore, because there's not enough to talk about. And B, we'd have to find a way to talk for two hours today about google investing 2.3 billion dollars in a central ohio data center, because that's the only news.

0:01:49 - Leo Laporte
There is, there. It is, ladies and gentlemen, and that concludes this week in google, this week. Now we're going to do this.

0:01:55 - Paris Martineau
We can give us a roll the credits?

0:01:57 - Leo Laporte
oh no, we're just beginning. By the way, jeffrey is the leonard town professor, emeritus for Journalistic Innovation at the Graduate School of Journalism at the City University of New York Emeritus yeah, I stuck that in there somewhere. And John is telling me our studio manager, by the way, everything we talk about you could search for on Google. It's true, okay, I rest my case. Anyway, I look forward to this all week because it's fun, it's like hang out with your buddies, and I'm hoping that the people at home feel the same way talking about things that that tickle us or interest us or make us mad I got one that, uh, that made me pretty mad this week. Do you want to start with that, or should we talk about nutcrackers?

0:02:43 - Paris Martineau
on the beach.

0:02:43 - Jeff Jarvis
Yeah, let's start with your blood pressure.

0:02:47 - Leo Laporte
This week the esteemed Surgeon General of the United States of America. What is he? The top doc, right? He is, like the most important doctor in America. Is that fair to say? He's the most official doctor in America. He's the one who gets to wear a uniform because he's a general, which I think is wrong. By the way, I think that's so too, stolen, if you had multiple of them.

0:03:13 - Paris Martineau
Would they be surgeons?

0:03:14 - Leo Laporte
general, yes, general, yes, that's true the editor says that's rare it's true, but you there is only one. So unless you had, like a surgeon, general emeritus gathered, there's debate as to how to address a surgeon general.

0:03:29 - Jeff Jarvis
Is it just general or is it surgeon general? Well, I will say this week.

0:03:37 - Leo Laporte
Right now it's moral panicking, jerk I will say that, uh, watchingions which is, of course, where I get most of my education about finance on Wall Street that they always called the United States Attorney General General. Like he's a real general, like general, and I think that that's the official designation is general. So there you go, uh, but the story as the story goes, the vivek murthy, who is the uh general surgeon general of the united states of america, has decided, has declared, in fact, that social media should have a warning label on it because it is so harmful. No evidence to our children.

0:04:26 - Paris Martineau
Oh boy Yep.

0:04:28 - Jeff Jarvis
And his doctrine here is that it is harmful unless they prove it's harmless.

0:04:35 - Paris Martineau
Oh boy.

0:04:36 - Jeff Jarvis
In the lead of his New York Times column he admits right off the bat that there's no evidence Like. If we feel this we should do it.

0:04:46 - Leo Laporte
Mike Mazik has an excellent piece, highly beautifully written, and in this case he got it into BuzzFeed. Not BuzzFeed Daily Beast, daily Beast. Thank you.

0:04:57 - Jeff Jarvis
Okay, Google, stop what.

0:04:59 - Leo Laporte
the hell Google really wants to be on this show, yeah.

0:05:05 - Jeff Jarvis
We should make Google a fourth guest. Yes, yeah.

0:05:09 - Leo Laporte
Anyway, masnick points out that, first of all, a lot of this is coming from Jonathan Haidt's book talking about this, and Haidt is a professor, a sociologist who says there is evidence, a professor, a sociologist, who says there is evidence, but has been kind of criticized by many, including what Mike Masick calls the leader in this field, cynthia Ogers is that her name? I'm trying to yes.

She wrote a piece. We've quoted it. We talked about this when it came out, saying the real danger here is by saying oh, you know what it's social media. And, by the way, his evidence, murty's, the general's evidence is well, what do you think would happen if somebody stares at a phone for five hours a day? That's literally his evidence. Well, it's got to be bad for you, because they're not hanging out with their friends. Well, actually, they're hanging out with their friends, murty, just because you have no friends on insta anyway. Um, that's their. For them, that's social. But what, what?

What ogier says which I think is really important again, she is the foremost expert in this is this actually makes it worse, because for a variety of reasons. First of all, you may be overlooking mental health issues, that this is a symptom of, not the cause of. By declaring it to be the cause, she says. You know, correlation is not causation, but if you declare it the cause, then you stop looking for other causes. There may well be a mental health epidemic among young people.

There's a very limited number of counselors in schools these days. There's very little opportunity for kids to go somewhere to get help. So often, she says, they turn to social media and their peer group. It's the only place they can get help. Furthermore, minority groups uh like lbgtq uh people and others trans people uh go to these social networks because that's where they can find their peers, that's where they can find an affirmation for themselves, especially maybe in a societal context, their school and at home, where they are looked down upon. This could be a very valuable tool for many of these kids, says Ogers. And to declare it, to put a label on it, like a cigarette we know cigarettes kill you.

0:07:25 - Paris Martineau
I'm also just baffled by that decision. I mean, I guess it makes more sense with tobacco products, because each time you are purchasing a discreet product, you are buying a pack of cigarettes or a carton which each have this label on it. Where would the label be on Instagram? On the app icon.

0:07:45 - Jeff Jarvis
It would be like our click on the app, like our click in, like the europeans and the click probably every time you go into it.

0:07:50 - Leo Laporte
this is horrible you want to do this, you idiot. I don't want people to think that this is going to happen because he doesn't have the uh, he doesn't have authority to do that.

0:07:59 - Jeff Jarvis
He's just saying it should have to get. He wrote an editorial congressional action, but well, it's got, but this will this just give Congress, and they've been screaming for it. And, if I may, I'm going to read from a certain book.

0:08:10 - Leo Laporte
Oh, a fabulous book, by the way, which everyone should buy immediately, called the Web we Weave.

0:08:14 - Jeff Jarvis
My favorite. I have a whole bunch of studies trying to fight against height here. Hate height height. Oxford's Amy Orban and Andrew Przbylski, who are two other experts from the UK who do a lot of research here. They analyzed three large-scale social data sets with more than 350,000 subjects and they found that the association between digital technology and adolescent well-being is negative.

But small Quote the association of well-being with regularly eating potatoes was nearly as negative with regularly eating potatoes was nearly as negative as the association with technology use and wearing glasses was more negatively associated with well-being because he got called four eyes when you were a kid and it hurt.

0:08:55 - Leo Laporte
Well, they should have been warning labels on glasses and french fries.

0:08:58 - Jeff Jarvis
And require contacts for all people. There's no data here and the New York Times takes his op op-ed, splashes it like crazy. The washington post god bless them did reporting really saying, ah, researchers don't agree with this, they don't find the evidence, they shouldn't do this. And the next day the new york times buries a story, saying, oh, not everybody agrees with murphy, here it's moral panic and sensationalism and it's going to affect the freedoms of the internet.

0:09:25 - Leo Laporte
I will defend the new york times here because he is the surgeon general and if they should have had a story at the same.

0:09:30 - Jeff Jarvis
Maybe they should have explained that it's not yesterday it's not given context.

0:09:35 - Leo Laporte
Yeah, yes, I agree they should have provided context. But if the surgeon general comes to you and says you know I want to write an opinion piece, you're gonna.

0:09:41 - Jeff Jarvis
I mean, that's appropriate for journal they didn't have to put the lead of the paper on it online and they should have done reporting If they were going to do that and make a news story out of it. Ann Well should have done it.

0:09:52 - Paris Martineau
I agree the news team of the New York Times should do reporting on it, but they wouldn't have been able to release it simultaneously because the New York Times newsroom is completely separate from opinion, so they have no idea. Ah, that's a very good point.

0:10:06 - Jeff Jarvis
Well, actually, my friend, no, the news story went up at the same time as the. As I saw, it went up at the same time as the op-ed.

0:10:14 - Leo Laporte

0:10:16 - Jeff Jarvis
I think so. So what your argument?

0:10:18 - Leo Laporte
is one was placed higher than the other.

0:10:22 - Jeff Jarvis
Well, the news story promoted the op-ed. Look what we got.

0:10:26 - Leo Laporte
Oh, so they didn't know. Anyway, you might say well, you guys have a dog in this hunt. You're a tech podcast. Of course you're going to defend social media.

0:10:38 - Jeff Jarvis
Oh, the New York Times has a dog in the hunt. They're anti-internet.

0:10:41 - Leo Laporte
Oh, because the New York Times doesn't like social media, they don't like the internet. Yeah, they're anti-Internet. Oh, because the New York Times doesn't like social media, they don't like the Internet. Yeah, they don't like the Internet. New York Times, yeah, yeah. So I hope he gets a lot of criticism for this it is. I think it's shameful for somebody who is supposedly a man of science to propose something based on with absolutely zero scientific evidence, especially with the importance of the Surgeon General.

When the Surgeon General of the United States announced that smoking caused cancer, that was really important and that office should carry that kind of weight. But when you throw out this garbage, science, people are not.

0:11:23 - Jeff Jarvis
He, by the way, compares it to the warning labels on cigarettes well, the only thing that's interesting, leo, is that is that in my book the web we leave, coming out in october, I also looked at moral panics past and it was interesting that the surgeon generals surgeons general right surgeons general, no, the surgeons general of the past um got roped into these investigations by Congress and assigned to investigate things. They got assigned to investigate video games, they got assigned to investigate violence and they investigated television. They did a huge study of television and when they came back they basically said not a here, pretty much okay.

0:12:02 - Leo Laporte
Murty writes that enraged congress faced with high levels of car accident related deaths, lawmakers demanded seat belts, airbags, crash testing and a host of other measures. When, when the faa grounded the boeing 737 max after the door plug came off when the plane was in the air, uh. Or when the dairy products were recalled because of listeria contamination, we responded. Why is it? We failed to respond to the harms of social media Because there's no causation. There's no direct causation.

0:12:38 - Jeff Jarvis
Because again it will distract from looking at all the harms that especially young people are feeling in society.

0:12:43 - Leo Laporte
Yeah, and that's the thing I would really bring up in response to this. It's if you know what he could, he could say hey, I'm really concerned about this, but when the the person who does the most research on this debunks it so vigorously and effectively and the same thing with Jonathan Haidt I think we have to listen to those people and it's just shameful. I think that, anyway, that's the one I'm mad about. So I said I would start with a mad story, and now we're mad about the same thing.

0:13:14 - Jeff Jarvis
Now what about you? Are you mad about that?

0:13:17 - Paris Martineau
I mean I think I'm mad about it in a different way. I don't think that the obvious folk, I mean certainly I think there should be more institutional focus from, like, a US government perspective on mental health as a holistic thing. I think that goes without saying. But I think when it comes to scrutiny of tech platforms and algorithmic feeds impact or lack thereof on children, there should certainly be like research done on that. And I do agree that focusing on something silly like warning labels is an ineffective use of political power at a time when there could be a lot more fact finding like out there. If you're actually devoting time and resources to figuring out what the appropriate response to achieve these aims.

0:14:02 - Leo Laporte
You, as usual, are sane, level-headed and I hate you. You should get mad with us. Don't defend any. Get your blood pressure up.

0:14:13 - Paris Martineau
I'm going to be too chill today. I went to the beach before this podcast. You had too many nutcrackers.

0:14:19 - Leo Laporte
Rio Kecken in our Discord chat and our club chat says the problem is the Surgeon General watched too much TV as a teen and now his brain is rotted and maybe he listened to Rock and Roll he probably had long hair. Comic books.

0:14:32 - Jeff Jarvis
Well, alright, here's a way, Paris, that it's being brought into life. Did you see what Los Angeles is doing? The proposing to do. Los Angeles is talking about banning cell phones in all public schools.

0:14:46 - Paris Martineau
Huh, I mean, I think that's good.

0:14:50 - Leo Laporte
Yeah, I don't have a problem with that except they will never get that through, because the minute a parent can't reach their child in an emergency, they will get sued.

0:14:59 - Jeff Jarvis
Well, the minute there's the first school shooting which God knows there will be in one of these schools.

0:15:03 - Leo Laporte
They'll get sued and so they're not going to pass it. They some some sane person will say, oh, you know, that's a liability well, your governor is talking about doing it through the whole state now okay, I know about this in discord and I think it happened already.

0:15:18 - Paris Martineau
What in my heart there's some version of me that's like okay, I'm probably being too conservative in this, but do we really need cell phones in schools? If a parent needs to contact their child, can't they just call the front office, like we did back in the day? I mean, similarly, perhaps I'm just not thinking of some possibility, but if there's a school shooting, all the kids are hunkered down under their desks.

0:15:42 - Jeff Jarvis
No, in Uvalde they were calling for help, they were calling for help Uvalde. They were calling for help because there wasn't help and the police wouldn't come in. Well, that's the problem. There's a larger problem admittedly. Yeah, there is a larger problem.

0:15:55 - Leo Laporte
I think you know I'm not against it and I am very sympathetic to teachers who have to teach to classrooms these days, to teach to classrooms these days. I remember when my kids were in high school, the teachers it wasn't cell phones yet, but it was a one-to-one classroom where every kid had a laptop provided by the school and it was really before the teacher could do anything. They had to insist close the laptops. The laptops must be closed, and now it's a lot easier to see if a laptop is closed and the kids paying attention. The problem with a cell phone and I know it because I sit at a dinner table every day with a 21 year old who's doing this we got michael, we know what you're doing what, what we know what you're doing?

0:16:39 - Jeff Jarvis
uh, it's really easy to hide a cell phone I wouldn't object if a teacher said you have to leave them at the door and there's a table many teachers do by the way, right, that's okay, but but to say that they're banned in the school, that might be, they're also educational these days too, yeah, so the la school board will ban students from using cell phones during the school day questions loom and how to do.

0:16:58 - Paris Martineau
It is what this is. I mean, I think that it's not like, if you want to do a similar system that some concerts have, where if you walk in you get a little Faraday pocket or something like that and you got to keep your phone in there until the end of the school day.

0:17:12 - Leo Laporte
That's what David Chappelle does. It is one of his jokes stolen, all right. I got one more. If your blood pressure is not yet high enough, then we're going to stop, but I got one more to get your blood pressure up. No-transcript. Well, stamos left a couple of weeks ago to get a job in private enterprise, actually in November. Renee DiResta, who was the research director, left last week because her contract was not renewed.

Other staff members' contracts expired this month. It's not renewed. Other staff members' contracts expired this month. And now Stanford is saying that we are going to shut down the Stanford Internet Observatory while retaining the branding, which is really cynical. But the reason why is what got my blood pressure up? This is from Casey Newton and Zoe Schiffer writing in their excellent platformer newsletter.

The shutdown comes amid a sustained and increasingly successful campaign among Republicans to discredit research institutions and discourage academics from investigating political speech and influence campaigns. Stanford Internet Observatory, sio, and its researchers have already been sued three times, sued three times by conservative groups, alleging its researchers colluded illegally with the federal government to censure speech, forcing Stanford to spend millions of dollars to defend its staff and students. And Stanford might have been willing to do that. But it got worse. In parallel, republican House Judiciary Chairman Jim Jordan and his Orwellian Subcommittee on the Weaponization of the Federal Government have subpoenaed documents at Stanford and other universities and then selectively leaked fragments of them to friendly conservative outlets, misrepresented their contents in public statements and, in an actual weaponization of government, jordan's committee has included students, both undergraduate and graduates, in its subpoena requests, publishing their names and putting them at risk of threats or worse, endangering those kids and Stanford if, even if they could withstand the lawsuits, I think probably rightly said this is too risky, but talk about shutting down speech. But they're not the only ones. Harvard did the same thing.

0:19:51 - Jeff Jarvis
Harvard has done the same thing in a couple of ways. And then a story last week in the New York Times that the movie about the Apprentice can't find an American distributor because they're scared of Trump. The chill is working and he's not even in office. Renee it's important to add, if I may, that she has a brand new book out this month Invisible Rulers the People who Turn Lies Into Reality and I emailed her after this happened to see how she was doing, and she said that in the book it's about propaganda campaigns, including this specific one, and it's about how universities and institutions don't understand the game that they're in now or how public opinion forms uh and uh.

0:20:29 - Leo Laporte
She's looking for a job, so you know, yesterday when we were on youtube, we got a broader range of comments than we normally get on our streams, including some, a number of people although it may well have been one person a couple of sock buckets saying you know, if you had more conservative voices, if you didn't insult conservatives all the time, maybe you wouldn't have a declining audience. You can't insult half your audience, to which I would like to respond. I didn't respond there, but I would like to respond now because we're doing what that person would say is losing our audience. I have nothing wrong with conservative. I have nothing, no bone, to pick with conservatives. Uh, in fact, my wife's a republican, or was, uh, I.

We have conservatives on the show, uh, including, uh, a number of people. You know I won't out them in their politics. Conservatives aren't the problem. What you're saying really isn't conservatives. You're saying if you didn't offend mega republicans or trumpers, you would have more people listening. And I have to tell you, because I believe in conservative values like our constitution, our democracy, in integrity, in elections, uh, I don't want those people on our network. I don't want them. This is a program intended for you, intelligent people, if you believe in such a patently corrupt person who has really watched the Jonathan Oliver last week, tonight on Sunday, really intends to bring this government down the minute he's elected, with the help of some very evil people. Those aren't conservatives, they're the opposite. They're activists. They're anti-American, they want, they have very much they're anti-institutions against institutions, against the Constitution.

So believe me, conservatives, I have no problem with.

0:22:22 - Jeff Jarvis
Here's something.

0:22:23 - Leo Laporte
Leo. Our. Maga Republican is offended by us talking about, for instance, jim jordan's attempt to uh blackmail stanford. If you think that's inappropriate, I'm sorry, you're in the wrong place, uh, but that's not anti-conservative joe rogan podcast is always looking for there's there's plenty of there's plenty of places for you to go sad to say, sad to.

0:22:45 - Jeff Jarvis
It's very scary here's the paradox of this and I wrote about this in the Gutenberg Parenthesis is that and like a good conservative, you know I'm a capitalist, I'll sell my books all the time is the paradox of conservatism now is that conservatism was about preserving institutions and progressivism was about changing institutions and progressivism was about changing institutions. Well, now it's completely flipped, where the conservatives are attacking the institutions and the progressive, the liberals, are in a position of having to defend the institutions.

0:23:16 - Leo Laporte
I like good, old fashioned conservatives, if it means defending the constitution, I'm all for it. I'm getting more conservative in time, to be honest with you, anyway, yes, so there are three stories to get your blood pressure up, and maybe.

0:23:32 - Jeff Jarvis
What do you take for blood pressure? Do you have a device that will help the blood pressure level, like you put?

0:23:36 - Paris Martineau
it on your tongue.

0:23:37 - Leo Laporte
This is going on your ears People earlier before the show. I'll show you, I'll give them a little plug on the show. This is a very expensive device. For years I've had ringing in my ears, as have you, benito, our producer, and many of you I know. Many, many of you have what's called tinnitus. You do too. For a long time I could ignore it, you know, when it was quiet I would hear it, like at night when I'm going to bed and stuff. But I, you know. But as I've gotten older and my hearing's gotten worse, it's gotten louder and louder and I can hear it all the time. Now it's like there's always a teak hill going in the background.

So when this FDA gave what they call de novo approval which is not not an endorsement of the technology but at least saying it's not going to hurt you of something called linear I um, I said, all right, I'll do anything. Now it's $4,000, so I'm trying it. Right now it's a 12-week. The money isn't the hard part. By the way, it's a 12-week program. Half an hour, twice a day. I have to put this electrode on my tongue which tickles it like champagne bubbles. It's not Like a battery, like when you put a battery Like a little tingle.

Yeah, and you can turn it up and down.

0:24:46 - Paris Martineau
Oh, I thought you guys licking batteries Did you do that as a kid. No, I never licked a battery.

0:24:51 - Leo Laporte
Well, you should try it.

0:24:52 - Paris Martineau
It won't hurt you.

0:24:53 - Jeff Jarvis
It won't hurt. Yeah.

0:24:54 - Leo Laporte
A 9-volt battery.

0:25:00 - Jeff Jarvis
Which side? No, it's a 9-volt.

0:25:01 - Benito Gonzalez
So, they're both in charge. That's how you find out if they're not Anyway.

0:25:04 - Leo Laporte
Exactly Right Producer trick right. Yeah, it's not super strong, it's not bad. It tingles your tongue. They call it bimodal, I don't know. You can see the information at L-E-N-I-R dripping and flutes and cellos and synthesizer going and it's doing, uh, it's doing scales and actually it's very soothing. It's kind of like meditating for half an hour a day. So I've been doing this half an hour. I've only been doing it, uh, two weeks for half an hour, twice a day for two weeks and, um, in 12. I'll tell you in 12 weeks if it helped. So far nothing what is it?

0:26:03 - Jeff Jarvis
what is it?

0:26:04 - Leo Laporte
it fools your brain into what you know there's a lot of I don't want to say pseudoscience, but there's kind of a mumbo jumbo stew of.

0:26:13 - Jeff Jarvis
So the surgeon general will like it, then he'll love it uh, it's a little woo, but there's a lot of success it's and they have a.

0:26:21 - Leo Laporte
They have a lot of yeah it.

0:26:23 - Paris Martineau
Yeah, it's woo-woo, but so are the sounds in your ears. Yeah, well, that's right.

0:26:28 - Leo Laporte
What they point out is no one knows what causes tinnitus, nor do we know how to cure it. And this doesn't cure it. What this is doing, they say, is training your brain to ignore it better, and 83% of patients in their clinical studies said, yes, we'd recommend this. It worked or it helped. It doesn't get rid of it. It helps, I don't. I don't. Who knows how it works? They don't know.

0:26:51 - Jeff Jarvis
Well, I put in the rundown early examples of quackery with electricity. Oh yeah, there's a lot of it.

0:26:56 - Leo Laporte
There's a lot. As soon as electricity was discovered, people started playing with it, because, you know, our impulses in our brain are like electrical activity and they say this it literally is electrical activity. Yeah, Well, is it? I mean, is it?

0:27:11 - Jeff Jarvis
In here, Leo is the bipolar electric belt. Yes, I know, Pulver muckers you know what's back.

0:27:19 - Leo Laporte
Remember in the old days, like Three Stooges, the women would go to the health club and they'd get jiggled. Yeah, that's back, that's back, the little jiggle bands.

0:27:32 - Paris Martineau
Jiggling is back. Jiggling is back.

0:27:36 - Leo Laporte
Anyway, I told people that I would try this and I would report back to you. So many 15% of Americans have tinnitus. They've done clinical trials. It's been very successful in their clinical trials.

0:27:50 - Jeff Jarvis
So you know, joe Scarborough says he has bad tinnitus. Everybody does, is it tinnitus or tinnitus?

0:27:57 - Paris Martineau

0:27:57 - Leo Laporte
I think it's tinnitus, but I don't know no my audiologist says tinnitus, it's both Okay, both are accepted, so it's just. Both are accepted, so it's just anyway. I thought I'd mention that I do that and it does help with your blood pressure. You know what may work just as well. Meditating half an hour twice a day might do the same thing.

0:28:15 - Jeff Jarvis
It might just be that right but then you have to not be mad for a half an hour that's oh well, I'm not when this is going on.

0:28:21 - Leo Laporte
The hardest thing about this is not falling asleep. They say don't do it lying down, he'll fall asleep. And it's true, you have to sit up, and even then you kind of drift off a little bit is it the same thing you listen to over?

time it's just yeah, that's what's weird is I know what. I thought this is going to be awful, uh, but it's, but it's relaxing and yet it's the same thing. It's not music, sort of music music. There's a scale, over and over and over again, but the synthesizer's doing it and your tongue's going and they've got little things rain in your ears and pink noise and stuff. I think it's trying to distract you.

0:29:06 - Jeff Jarvis
I once lived next to a woman in my first apartment in New York who had a piano in her apartment and these were thin walls and all she ever played was scales. Just once Once, that was all for hours on end. Scales Drove me completely batty.

0:29:20 - Leo Laporte
But she was relaxed. All right, let's take a break and when we come back? I got nothing. I didn't get a laugh, a smile, nothing.

0:29:31 - Paris Martineau
God, you guys tough audience when you come back, we might crack a grin, who's?

0:29:35 - Leo Laporte
to say Crack a grin when I come back. I want to know more about nutcrackers, is what I want to know. Paris has joined us. She cut short her day at the beach in uh in new york city, uh it feels like I have a sunburn, so it might have been wise I don't know. Your friends are still there enjoying their nutcrackers.

0:29:55 - Jeff Jarvis
I think your suntan I use suntan lotion.

0:29:58 - Paris Martineau
I'm just very pale. I don't know. It's the sort of thing where I can't tell whether it's just my skin is happy it was in the sun or if I have to eat early.

0:30:06 - Leo Laporte
You are glowing. I'm glowing a little bit, yeah, no, it looks good, not too much.

0:30:09 - Paris Martineau
No, I think my friends are back from the beach now.

0:30:11 - Leo Laporte

0:30:12 - Paris Martineau
And I learned.

0:30:13 - Leo Laporte
Jeff and I learned a new thing that there are people who go up and down the beaches of New York City offering alcoholic beverages called Nutcrackers.

0:30:31 - Paris Martineau
Yeah, it's a fruity alcoholic beverage served in kind of a to-go bottle. Um, the price is god knows what. You pay, cash or venmo, and uh, they walk down the beach and kind of compete with one another.

0:30:38 - Leo Laporte
we had to bring our own boone's farm. Right, jeff, we would bring the strawberry. Yeah, we're responsible. Yeah, uh, this show brought to you today by the folks at eufy. You may know the name, eufy, that's the smart home division of anchor. We love the anchor products. In fact, as soon as anchor started putting out eufy products I took a look. We really like this.

This is the eufy Video Smart Lock E330. It's kind of three devices in one package. It's a smart doorbell, a video camera and an electronic lock. But here's the thing it's very easy to install. Look at this. Micah's doing it with just a screwdriver. It goes right in where the old lock did Battery powered and with fingerprint recognition.

So it has about 0.3 second fingerprint recognition. It takes one second to turn the deadbolt. It's a deadbolt system. There's the batteries putting it in. You scan the barcode to join it to your Eufy smart home and now you can do all sorts of things. You can let people in remotely, you can see who's at the door, you can hear the doorbell ring and with that 10,000 milliamp rechargeable battery, your Eufy VideoLock can last up to four months. Easy to remove, charge it up. Look at this he puts his finger on it and it unlocks just like that. But here's another thing I really like about it it's got a key and a keyhole, so you're not giving up anything with your Eufy door lock. If the power's out, the battery dies, you still can get in.

Here's another thing you can control your front door remotely using the Eufy video lock app. So here's Burke trying to get in our engineering department. He rings the doorbell. Micah checks the camera, says oh yeah, that's Burke, unlocks the door for him, lets him in in. It has pass cut. Unlocking remote control with 2k clear sight, two-way audio, enhanced night vision. This does what three different devices would do. And here's the best part no monthly fees, no subscription at all. All of your eufy video lock recordings are stored locally, so you not only don't have to pay for storage, you don't have to pay any subscription of any kind, and your privacy is guaranteed. Enjoy a worry-free experience with an 18-month warranty, all backed by Eufy's 24-7 professional customer service team. Get yours today by searching for Eufy Video Lock E-U-F-Y Video Lock on Amazon or visit eufycom. Eufycom today. The Eufy video lock. This is so cool. It's now guarding our engineering department. Thank you, eufy. $15. There is inflation. Hits the nutcracker, holy moly, prices are going up you are muted Paris.

Oh, she's talking, but we cannot hear.

0:33:31 - Paris Martineau
Paris, dang it. Sorry, I had it on mute because I was snacking on cookies.

0:33:35 - Leo Laporte
Because you were drinking a Nutcracker. I know.

0:33:38 - Paris Martineau
I was drinking a Spindrift Seltzer, but no part of the issue is the Nutcracker One. I did pay $15 for a Nutcracker today and I felt bad about it, but the Nutcracker guys are walking around on the beach. I was at the Jacob Reese Beach. It was packed. The sand was super hot by the time. I got my little feet over to the Nutcracker guy.

0:33:57 - PC
I was burning, I was like, whatever you were taking it, at any price, just give me my drink.

0:34:05 - Leo Laporte
Just give me my drink, take my cash and let me go back to the shade and I was like dang, I shouldn't have paid 15 for that, but I did well. Our discord shared an inflation story about nutcrackers saying prices are as high as 15. Now, I figure, if you know, new york's prices are always going to be the the highest so, but those are tax-free. So that's straight up supply and demand prices he's got to get a bunch of plastic bottles. He's got to make the thing pour it in.

0:34:31 - Jeff Jarvis
He's got god knows what and what god knows what circumstance. That's why I'm not sure I would really want to.

0:34:36 - Leo Laporte
Oh yeah, no I would really listen.

0:34:38 - Paris Martineau
You're taking your life in your hands here you're drinking a beverage on the beach, it's not? You don't think that much about it, do you do? You pick up, there's enough alcohol in there, it's going to kill any bacteria, it's going to kill anything.

0:34:49 - Jeff Jarvis
Yeah, Do you? Do you get fruit from fruit people on the street? The little ladies who were cutting it up on the street?

0:34:54 - Paris Martineau
No, I normally go to the farmer's market for fruit. I respect the fruit ladies, but also I just don't order fruit enough for that to be an echo. These are just fruit vendors that are out in the street and always give me pause because it's hot up in the street. What is fruit doing out there?

0:35:11 - Leo Laporte
but true, they're very popular so I assume many people do and they're fine I just want to say this is why the rest of the country thinks new york's crazy I mean, that's fair yep, uh japan.

Oh, let's not. Let's see. Uh, did we do all the outrage? Have we done all the moral panic? Oh, let's see. There's always more. There's always more moral panic. How about one from the other side?

Pop culture has become an oligopoly. We are talking on uh twit. This is from uh a uh experimental-historycom, adam mastriani. We were talking on twit uh, but you know you were there about why movies are so terrible these days. Well, adam's got a theory. He says you may have noticed, every popular music movie these days is a remake, reboot, sequel, spinoff or cinematic universe expansion, and he brings the receipts In 2021,.

Only one of the 10 top grossing movies, ryan Reynolds' Free Guy was an original. There were only two originals in the 2020 top 10 and none at all in 2019. People blame this trend on greedy movie studios or dumb movie goers or competition from netflix or humanity running out of ideas, but really it's because there is a cultural oligopoly. What used to be winners take some in in not just movies, but in movies, movies, tv, music books, video games has grown into winner's take most and is now verging on winner's take. All that kind of, I have to say it resonates with me. I'm wondering what you think about it. He has the look at this chart. Movies in the top 20 by revenue that are prequels, sequels, spin-offs, remakes, reboots or cinematic universe expansions. This is 1980, 2000,.

0:37:16 - Jeff Jarvis
It really starts to go up and it's nearly 100% by 2020. That's pretty clear. So as a former TV critic and movie critic person, I disagree with the premise to this extent. There's no surprise here. But what he's really covering is the death of mass, the death of the blockbuster which you've been talking about.

Yes, right and and and, so the top of the charts doesn't really matter anymore. So much of the money is being made down the way. The risk to try to make a blockbuster, a number one which still pays, is huge is worse. So they're going to find safer ways to do that Reality TV, movie franchises, book franchises and so on. But the numbers at the top are small in the total comparison of the entirety. So if you look at what happened with music and the former chief economist at Spotify, who's doing something forgetting, has written really well about this they used to have a couple hundred genres, Now there's 9,000 genres.

0:38:15 - Benito Gonzalez
Well, I would take anything that Spotify says about the music industry.

0:38:18 - Jeff Jarvis
He left he left.

0:38:19 - Leo Laporte
He's gone, now Formerly, he's cleansed. But what you say actually is a good way of annotating this graph, because this graph, which does look damning, but you know the graph, that shows it is damning of the quality of movies, but it's only the top 20 movies.

0:38:33 - Jeff Jarvis
It's only the top 20 movies.

0:38:34 - Leo Laporte
And what you're saying is there is a rich long tail in all of these media that more than makes up for the revenue in the top 20.

0:38:43 - Jeff Jarvis
Well, they compete with that top so much that it's harder to make it at the top, and so you're going to be safer and do stupider. That makes sense. Actually, I like your theory much better. Paris was going to interject and disagree, I think.

0:38:55 - Paris Martineau
I was just saying. I mean I think that with those caveats that makes sense. I was going to interject and say it is notable that the share of revenue is going up. It and say it is notable that the share of revenue is going up, it's not decreasing for these top 20 movies. But I do think, thinking about it in context. But these are only the top 20 movies. Of course top 20 movies buy like revenue. Of course they're going to be created by the big movies, the blockbusters the big boys yeah yeah he actually.

0:39:22 - Leo Laporte
Adam astriani kind of does acknowledge this when he's talking about the causes. He says software and the internet have made it easier than ever to create and publish content. Most of the stuff that random amateurs make up, whoops. Oh, thank you. Windows wants to restart to update. Do you mind if we stop the show?

0:39:40 - Leo Laporte
briefly uh it're out of date. Leo, it's time to restart. How.

0:39:48 - Leo Laporte
Why do people use Windows and be on me, anyway, where was I? Most of the stuff random amateurs make is crap and nobody looks at it. But this is your point, jeff a tiny proportion gets really successful. This might make media giants choose to produce and promote stuff. Produce and promote stuff that independent weirdos never could like an Avengers movie. Okay, the other thing is consolidation. There are very few movie studios, music labels, tv stations, books that's true too. Video games it's all coming, and this is why I was really upset. Paul loved the idea that Microsoft was going to buy blizzard Activision we talked about this on Sunday too but to me it seemed like a bad thing for the video game industry because it was just more consolidation.

He also talks about innovation. You may think there's nothing left to discover in art forms as old as literature and music and that they simply iterate as fashions change. Of course, you know there's nothing new. So why should? Why should that be a surprise? He says it took humans thousands of years to figure out how to create the illusion of depth in paintings. Novelists used to think sentences had to be long and complicated until Hemingway came along, right. So he talks about some of the innovations, like sampling and music, that have really been changed how we make music, um, so that I don't know why he brings that up. Maybe that's a counter argument to anyway, I think you're right and but I do think he's also right that and it's one of the reasons we see so many sequels and remakes and cinematic universe movies these days- it's crap, it's crap it is something else he also brings up, though, which I think is true, is that movies have also all these mediums are not Sorry, I have to.

I'm sorry, I hate to interrupt. I just have to restart Windows. I'm sorry, you go ahead. I'm just I'll let this.

0:41:45 - Benito Gonzalez
Like. So all the mediums are competing with each other for time, basically Because, like, there's so much of it now.

0:41:50 - Leo Laporte
Well, that's true for us too, right yeah, One of the things that's eating away at our audience is there's so many choices.

0:41:56 - Benito Gonzalez
So once you have all these choices, people will go and pick the safe choice.

0:42:01 - Leo Laporte
Oh, when you go to Netflix, you don't take a chance on Netflix, do you? You?

0:42:07 - Paris Martineau
don't say oh, say, oh no. People put on their comfort shows they don't go and look at for something new but how many people?

though there was a, it was probably 2018, 2019. I was listening to a netflix earnings call and, uh, the event ceo of netflix was like we consider our competition. We're looking ahead for the next 5-10 years not to be other streamers, but to be games like fortnight or social media feeds. We are competing for overall attention span throughout the day, not directly with other streamers and one-to-one forms of entertainment, and I think that that's kind of interesting. Here is part of it is you're kind of consumers feel a bit like a sweaty eyeball, you're are you going to look at? There's so many different options.

0:42:51 - Leo Laporte
Wait a minute. Consumers feel like sweaty eyeballs.

0:42:54 - Paris Martineau
A big, sweaty eyeball, an eyeball that's just big and sweaty from all the stress.

0:42:59 - Leo Laporte
Are you sure you only had one nutcracker?

0:43:00 - Jeff Jarvis
Yeah, I'd see it. I'd think she was in the sun a little too long, you know what's really annoying.

0:43:05 - Leo Laporte
Remember that tone that Windows said you got to update. Remember that tone that Windows said you got to update.

0:43:12 - Jeff Jarvis
So I pressed update and it didn't Wow, it's not At least you could hear that tone.

0:43:17 - Leo Laporte
Yes, that wasn't at 9 kilohertz. All right, you sweaty eyeballs, let's find something else to talk about.

0:43:24 - Paris Martineau
I don't know why, but I had an editor who for years would use the phrase a big sweaty eyeball, and it has worked its way into my vocabulary somehow.

0:43:33 - Jeff Jarvis
Yeah, that makes no sense.

0:43:33 - Leo Laporte
It doesn't I remember it doesn't make any sense With regard to what I remember asking this, like that's your audience.

0:43:41 - Paris Martineau
I mean, I think it is more of a. The one-to-one is overwhelmed by choice or choice paralysis, something like that yeah, well, that doesn't make any sense. No, overwhelmed by choice or choice paralysis, something like that? Yeah, it doesn't make any sense.

0:43:52 - Leo Laporte
No it doesn't, but I understand.

0:43:53 - Paris Martineau
Casey Johnson, I'm sorry.

0:43:55 - Jeff Jarvis
Okay, well, well, paris, there is a sweaty eyeballs animation festival, Is there?

0:44:01 - Paris Martineau
really, I did see that. I googled sweaty eyeball and nothing came up.

0:44:05 - Leo Laporte
It's coming to Baltimore October 28th. You better get going. Wait a minute. It says October 28th through 20th. That's confusing 18 through 20. Oh, 18,? Okay, I can't read very well.

0:44:18 - Jeff Jarvis
SweatyEyedBallscom. But what does it mean still?

0:44:23 - Paris Martineau
It's a great question.

0:44:27 - Leo Laporte
So you may remember, last week I mentioned that musk got his shareholder vote that he was hoping for and was his uh, his uh pay package. Muck's born every minute. Well, I thought it was reinstated, but no, they've got to go back to the court now and say, well, look here, judge, the majority of investors approved the 56 billion dollar compensation. The judge has it again. It's it's just starts it all over again but?

0:44:56 - Jeff Jarvis
but leo, don't they? But he said, he says he's going to move the headquarters to texas because he doesn't like delaware anymore.

0:45:03 - Leo Laporte
Well, yeah, because of the delaware chancery court.

0:45:06 - Paris Martineau
I don't know I will say, um, something I would really recommend anyone doing. If you have even like a cursory interest in elon musk as a person and how his cult personality is formed is uh. The other week I sit next to our tesla reporter, becky peterson, and she and one of our editors who's writing our briefing newsletter that day were like, oh, we're going to watch the Elon Musk shareholder meeting in the conference room. I was like, great, I'll come in there, do my work. I would recommend to any person interested in Elon Musk watch the full video of his thing at the shareholders meeting. It was the most painful, however many minutes of my life. He legitimately, I think in the first five minutes of it he like fails to put together a single sentence. He is like uh, uh, hey, uh, thanks guys. Um, like unable to articulate words. One of the I mean he tells a couple rambling stories. At one point he stops his speech to the shareholders to point out that it was 420 and that, whoa.

0:46:10 - PC
He just happened to look down at his watch, and it was 420 isn't that funny guys.

0:46:15 - Leo Laporte
It was just that's like a deeply uncomfortable oh my goodness did he?

0:46:20 - Jeff Jarvis
did he have to uh reboot his windows machine in the middle of?

0:46:23 - Leo Laporte
time. That's like a ninth grader. He's not that that would be.

0:46:27 - Paris Martineau
He's not that advanced jeff the.

0:46:29 - Jeff Jarvis
The daily show had a great scenes of elon musk dancing and walking funny and all that and said it looks like he's a being that just got a body well, he has said, uh, that he's on the spectrum.

0:46:42 - Leo Laporte
Maybe he's just a little neurodivergent and we shouldn't be mean to him or besmirching those, those who are. Then there's Arwa Madawi in the Guardian, who says the companies led by the boob-obsessed billionaire have faced a number of sexual harassment lawsuits. Why do his cult-like followers still consider him a genius? The headline Will Elon Musk's incessant innuendo ever catch up with him? It really is.

0:47:13 - Paris Martineau
Sixth grade Dro dropping the w from the twitter sign hardy har har uh, part of what I just don't understand is I've watched and listened to a lot of like quarterly earnings calls, shareholder meetings. It's something I do a lot for work. I I've never seen it. Maybe this was just his public speaking persona, but it seemed like he was just winging it. It didn't look like he was reading off a teleprompter. If he was, it was a very odd series of notes for anyone to have written down. And I'm just like my dude you're not the CEO of one, but many companies. Why don't you, if you're having trouble public, like speaking publicly? Why wouldn't you just do what every other chief executive does?

0:47:54 - Leo Laporte
and write it down. I recognize this because it's happened to me. This is when everyone around you tells you you're a genius, and then you start to believe it and then you say, oh, I don't have to do any prep, I'm a genius, they love me.

0:48:08 - Benito Gonzalez
Yeah, by virtue of me saying it, it's already great. That's his thinking.

0:48:12 - Leo Laporte
Yeah, yeah, I'm throwing pearls before swine here. You know, get with the program. This article is so damning. I didn't realize there was so much.

0:48:24 - Jeff Jarvis
Yeah, it really piles up.

0:48:25 - Leo Laporte
Oh I mean, and it's really misogynistic and crude. It's not just childish, it's inappropriate for a leader at a company. And you know, a Tesla factory worker filed a complaint alleging that Tesla had a pervasive culture of sexual harassment, including frequent groping on the factory floor. She said she was frequently propositioned and subject to well, I can't even read the comments. I'd be embarrassed to read them, let alone say them out loud to a human. And she's not the only lawsuit in a sexual harassment lawsuit. This article is, I think, damning.

0:49:10 - Jeff Jarvis
And really more serious than just that he's a buffoon.

0:49:14 - Leo Laporte
This is a bad man.

0:49:17 - Jeff Jarvis
And why doesn't he? Why is there not Me Too here? Why is he not being? He's getting away with it. He's got plenty. We had a story about this I think was it last week about him and his awful behavior.

0:49:28 - Paris Martineau
Well, I think part of what is worth considering, especially given that all this news is tied to him the shareholders of Tesla approving his giant pay package is, I assume if you're a Tesla shareholder, you realize one of the most valuable things your company has, or your stock has, is Elon Musk at the helm. There's no way that Tesla Tesla is not valued like a normal company. Elon, even at the shareholders meeting it said oh, you're crazy if you're not valuing Tesla like it's going to be the most important company of the future and that we're going to create, I think, personal androids for two for every person in the world. He is somehow able to make Tesla's price skyrocket and his company's stock prices skyrocket in a way that is completely untethered from reality and, from a shareholder's perspective, that's invaluable, no matter how many terrible comments he makes.

0:50:21 - Jeff Jarvis
Well, it's the house that hype builds right. It's that belief. Last week we discussed the story at the Wall Street Journal. I just went back. The headline was Elon Musk's boundary-bl Blurring Relationships with Women at SpaceX. No, they're mollycoddling him in that story.

0:50:43 - Leo Laporte
I'm seeing if I can pull this up. On CNBC, Morgan Freeman was being interviewed. Let me see if I can get the clip here.

0:50:55 - PC
Platforms. Yesterday, many of you seemed to feel it was very cathartic, for you as well. Anyway, I think today will be a bit more of a traditional show. We will see. We're going to start with some stuff related to Elon Musk, who is just squarely still in this free speech.

0:51:10 - Leo Laporte
Oh, this is not. I'm sorry I'm playing the wrong thing. I'm playing a podcast review of what Morgan Freeman said, which is, by the way this is another problem with the Internet right, it's very hard to find the original content. Maybe this is it. Maybe this is it. I think Elon posted it, so it's got to be it. Yeah, here we go.

0:51:35 - Benito Gonzalez
Phone to see what the stock market is. Is it true that on shoots, you're sometimes checking your phone to see what the stock market's doing? Yeah, any stocks. In particular, I own Tesla.

0:51:47 - Leo Laporte
Tesla. Yeah, I'm a huge fan of Elon Musk's oh boy, and I think he's got the most incredibly forward-thinking ideas about where we can go technologically.

0:52:00 - Leo Laporte
So this is why Elon gets a shareholder vote, you know, because his stock is going through the roof. Yeah, except it's not anymore.

0:52:07 - Jeff Jarvis
Why is CNBC interviewing Morgan Freeman about stock? I don't know through the roof, yeah, except it's not. Why is cnbc interviewing morgan freeman?

0:52:11 - Leo Laporte
about elon musk stock? I don't know. You know why it's good for ratings, like everything else. Why do you?

0:52:19 - Jeff Jarvis
think I just played it yeah yeah, yeah, too bad.

0:52:23 - Leo Laporte
we don't have any ratings. Uh, what else do you want to do? Uh, some AI stuff, what else? Oh, thank you, lena Khan, the FTC and the department of justice suing Adobe. We talked about it earlier today on windows weekly.

0:52:38 - Jeff Jarvis
This is a good cause.

0:52:39 - Leo Laporte
It happened to me there. There they're suing Adobe for deceiving subscriptions that are too hard to cancel. Adobe hides the early cancellation fees. In fact, if you go right now to adobecom and you, you know, sign up for the uh, the adobe photographer's plan, which is 20 a month, I can actually go through it and show you. I mean, even though they're being sued, the dark pattern is right there still. Uh, let's see where. What do I want to get?

0:53:10 - Jeff Jarvis
I want to subscribe last week I wanted to to password protect documents. My university required it for my retirement and I would have to subscribe to adobe to do it right. I said, screw that, I'm using fedex here's the.

0:53:25 - Leo Laporte
Here's the photography thing. So look at this over here. Look at closely. It's $19.99 a month or $239.88 a year, but that's the same price. This is the annual plan. Okay, well, wait a minute. Fees apply if you cancel after two weeks. So you sign up for $20 a month. That's $240, right?

0:53:46 - Jeff Jarvis
I didn't know, that, oh, and then?

0:53:47 - Leo Laporte
if you cancel after 14 days? I didn't know that. Oh, and then, if you cancel after 14 days, your service will continue to the end of that month's billing period. And you'll be charged an early termination fee which is not specified. Wow Slime balls, the. Ftc says it's not specified because it's a lot, and they are going after him in court and I have to say I'm all for this one. Yeah, this one this time, I'm all for this one, yeah this one.

0:54:10 - Jeff Jarvis
This time I'm all on her side.

0:54:12 - Leo Laporte
The DOJ says Adobe has harmed consumers by enrolling them in its default, most lucrative subscription plan without clearly disclosing important plan terms. They hide the terms of its annual, paid monthly plan in the fine print behind optional text boxes and hyperlinks. They fail to properly disclose the early termination fee incurred upon cancellation. That can get ready for this amount to hundreds of dollars when bring back shrink wrap, yeah. When customers do attempt to cancel, the doj alleges adobe requires them to go through an onerous and complicated cancellation process that involves navigating through multiple web pages and pop-ups.

It then allegedly chat with a support person like beg them to let you cancel, and then it ambushes you with an early termination fee. Uh, this is exact.

0:54:58 - Jeff Jarvis
I mean, talk about junk fees, talk about great, great audio of the guy trying to cancel aol.

0:55:04 - Leo Laporte
Yeah who was? That was somebody we knew. I'm trying to remember who it was. Was it, yeah, um?

0:55:12 - Benito Gonzalez
but this is like a long time coming, right this is this is happening this? This has been in the works since the early 2000s it's like everybody does let them buy all of macromedia. Well, let them do all that stuff, yeah, yeah, and like here they are now just owning it.

0:55:24 - Leo Laporte
Let them get everything but figma they did and lena khan stopped him right from from buying figma. Uh, anyway, I I am all for her, uh, her judicious prosecutions of some of the worst offenders in this case. Uh, apple and meta are going to face eu charges. Apple and meta both offered what they thought would be sufficient to satisfy the Digital Markets Act. The DMA in the EU, margaret Vestager, says not so fast. According to the Financial Times, they are about to go after Apple for their store plan and they're going after Meta because Meta offers that you can pay us or we can spy on you, which would you like. And the EU says neither of them are the spirit of the Digital Markets Act. The Financial Times says Apple will be the first to face charges and that will be imminent any day now.

So good, you know, sometimes government makes a mistake when it comes to regulating technology. But Sometimes government makes a mistake when it comes to regulating technology, but oftentimes they're the last defense against, you know, just companies that just are going after you for all kinds of things. All right, so, oh, I did want to ask you about this. Let's take a little break. I have a story I want to ask you about. Mozilla has just bought an ad firm of of all things, uh, but well, I'll talk about it in a second. I I'm not convinced it's the wrong thing to do, but we'll see how mozilla's uh fans take it. First, though, a word from our sponsor, a company you've heard me talk about a lot. In fact, I just talked about them on Windows Weekly. I called them Collide. They are now one password.

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We've been longtime fans of Collide. I was thrilled when Collide got acquired by 1Password. 1password is one of the great products out there To do that kind of security. To combine the two together. That's remarkable. So thank you, 1password, for supporting this week in Google. We're glad to support you right back. So Mozilla has announced that it has acquired an ad metrics firm called Anonym and the register raises this question. First, thomas Claiborne, writing in the register. He says Mozilla is touting it as a way to help the online advertising industry, support user privacy and give the advertising industry what they want, which is while delivering effective adverts.

Yeah, uh, this was founded by meta executives. Okay, Strike number one in 2022. Um, now the real question that the register register raises is many, many mozilla users use mozilla because it's not google, because it's got you. You know you can put ad blocking on it, and so there's some thought that why is Mozilla doing this?

1:00:12 - Jeff Jarvis
Are they trying to do ads the right way, so we can support media.

1:00:14 - Leo Laporte
That's what they're trying to do.

Mozilla's marquee product, he writes, the Firefox browser, has long been a refuge from the not-so-private Google Chrome ecosystem among those who block ads for the sake of security and privacy. Many of its other products emphasize privacy, while since the 1990s has implied which, since the 1990s have implied the avoidance of online advertising. So what Anonym does and this is the question I have for you too, and if this seems okay to you, anonym does a few things that are a little weird. One of the things they do is they collect information. Let me see if I can find this description here.

1:00:59 - Paris Martineau
Well, this is Ariel Anonym allows advertisers to join their first-party data to publish your data for the purpose of measurement, targeting and optimization, but the nature of their technology is that calculations occur in a private and secure environment where humans do not access the individual data. The outputs are private and anonymous, and all individual data and PII that's personally identifiable information is destroyed after the calculations are complete and it doesn't see or retain individual data or build profiles and the reason I'm interested in this is because it's we do something like that.

1:01:31 - Leo Laporte
So we've been told by agencies and advertisers we're not going to buy you unless you can I mean the things they want you know unless you can prove to us that you're selling our product. They want to know who's hearing the podcast. We don't want to give them that information. We don't really know it. All we really know is IP addresses of people who've downloaded it. Actually, it's not even of people, the IP address from which a podcast has been downloaded. It could be Microsoft's IP address, in which case we really don't know who it is. It could be a thousand people, but we have that list of IP addresses.

The advertiser has a list of IP addresses that visited the landing page or their website. What the company we use, podsight, does is it collects both those databases without looking at them, matches them up and then returns to the advertiser a simple number 58% of the people who visited your landing page also heard your ad on Twit page. Also heard your ad on twit. Some, not all, very not even the majority of advertisers, but some advertisers are satisfied by that. That's all we want to know. Did you hear the ad? Did it drive traffic. Um, I think that I think that that's kind of what anonym is trying to do too. Do we accept the proposition that we have to do something to support ad supported internet media like ours? Like a webpage? Well, the information is subscription, so I can't use the information Like the Verge, like most media, like most media.

1:03:03 - Jeff Jarvis
I say yes, paris, and we need new models.

1:03:10 - Leo Laporte
Is this model private enough?

1:03:14 - Paris Martineau
I mean I don't know the specifics about this model that description seems fine. I mean, typically a description given by a company's PR rep could have a number of caveats that are being left out.

1:03:27 - Leo Laporte
Yeah, you have to trust the company, of course.

1:03:30 - Paris Martineau
Yeah, I think it's an interesting approach from Mozilla. I'm curious is this the for-profit part of Mozilla or the non-profit part that's going to be controlling N&M?

1:03:43 - Jeff Jarvis
Good question.

1:03:45 - Leo Laporte
N&M, we're told, will operate as its own business unit within Mozilla, says a register. The company provides privacy-safe ad measurement, audience segmentation and ad delivery organization. I mean, I think it's obviously part of the profit operation of Mozilla and you know I love Firefox, I use Firefox and I have to say I've been very concerned because Firefox's market share is dwindling. Chrome is so dominant. We know Chrome is not privacy forward, even though Google has made some efforts in that direction. I think it has to be solved. I think Google's trying to solve it because they have no choice and I think Mozilla is doing the same thing.

1:04:30 - Paris Martineau
They want to survive, they have to have so here's how mozilla describes it on its blog. Here's how it works three parts. Part one is secure environment data sets are matched in a highly secure environment, ensuring advertisers, publishers and in on don't access any user level data. Anonymized analytics the process results in anonymized insights and models helping advertisers measure and improve campaign performance while safeguarding consumer privacy. And, finally, differential privacy algorithms these algorithms add noise to the data, protecting it from being traced back to individual users. I mean, I think that that seems fine. Mozilla describes it as this acquisition marks a significant step in addressing the need for privacy preserving advertising solutions. I guess that's a better step in a direction if everything is going to go this way.

1:05:21 - Leo Laporte
There's certainly and I think the register readers are in this group a large group of people who say no advertising, no spying, nothing, right.

1:05:31 - Paris Martineau
But yet also they don't want to pay for things.

1:05:33 - Leo Laporte
Right, and that's kind of. I think that's what Meta is telling the EU. Look, either we could do behavioral advertising or people are going to have to pay us. There's no middle ground. We can't survive without revenue. We have to get it from advertising or from the users.

1:05:53 - Jeff Jarvis
Or you do things like bad legislation to try to blackmail technology companies, or you accept government money and find yourself a conflict of interest. That's the worst way. Or you go to foundations with strings attached Right when I teach my students all the time. Every single revenue stream you have has conflicts you've got to grapple with.

1:06:11 - Leo Laporte
And that's what you went to Sacramento to lobby against is the California Journalism Act, which would subsidize big journalism with basically a tax, a link tax on big tech.

1:06:24 - Jeff Jarvis
It's worse than that. So I'm going back next Tuesday to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee in Sacramento. We're brought in by the Chamber of Commerce and the latest version of the bill creates a fee, a tax, because it's government mandated. It's a tax for accessing content, that's a tax on reading. That's offensive Constitutionally, it's offensive to the enlightened society that we're supposed to be, and most of the money is going to go to hedge funds. A lot of it's going to go to big companies and big companies outside of California, and it holds two companies responsible for the entire fate of news, which is just naive. The people who have ruined news in California is the hedge funds Tax. Those bastards, yeah.

1:07:10 - Leo Laporte
I agree with you. I mean in a perfect world. We, as I mean I use myself as an example we, the the product we produce is not free, costs us more. You know, a couple of million dollars a year to produce. We got to get that money from somewhere. We did quite well with getting it from advertising. In the early days advertisers weren't so concerned about behavioral advertising. They were satisfied with referral codes.

You know um and impact well in fact yeah, they would look and we always encourage them to look at performance too, but they would always have an offer code or they'd have a special url and for a long time they were satisfied, although their companies this really puzzles me who, when an offer code, you know, sometimes it gets on the coupon sites. As soon as the offer code leaks out, they cancel it and it's like well, dudes, that just means more people are going to use it and buy your stuff. I don't understand, yeah, why they said no, we just want to know how well we're doing on twit. Okay, it's you know. So they change the offer code. Uh, used to be, they change it a lot. We've kind of it's calmed down a lot, um, but we have to make money somehow. It's honestly. If in a perfect world, uh, we would just charge you, we'd be like like Consumer Reports or, of course, consumer Reports. Really, I don't know how financially solvent they are. Oh, yeah, I'm sure they get government money right, no, I don't think so.

1:08:37 - Paris Martineau
I think they depend on grants right.

1:08:40 - Jeff Jarvis
Well, they also depend on no. If you want to get car rankings, you pay a lot.

1:08:44 - Paris Martineau
I know, I mean, they pay a lot. You pay like 50 bucks a year.

1:08:47 - Leo Laporte
No, you, pay like 50 bucks a year. No, I don't pay that. It's 20 bucks a year or something like that. It's not expensive.

1:08:51 - Jeff Jarvis
To get all of the ratings. I think they have lots of ancillary products.

1:08:55 - Leo Laporte
Well, no, I just subscribed to Consumer Reports. Oh, they may have other stuff.

1:08:58 - Paris Martineau
I did recently, I think it's. Yeah, they have philanthropic partners.

1:09:01 - Jeff Jarvis
Oh yeah, absolutely. Craig Newmark was on the board for a long time.

1:09:05 - Leo Laporte
Big supports lots of things. They do give philanthropy, but there's subscriptions.

But they don't have any ads, honestly, and they say their slogan is ad-free, influence-free, powered by consumers. That's how I'd love to do this, and if we can get enough of you to subscribe to Club Twitter, I will do that. But it's not enough yet. We started, see. So I started that way, right? I said no, we're never going to have ads. For the first year I said never going to have ads. Just like Google, we had a tip jar. It didn't work. We never made enough money even just to pay me, let alone a staff or hosts or anything. So then we started doing ads and that, for a while, was really good, right. For about 15, 16 years, we built that giant studio. We spent a lot. I spent tens of millions of dollars I don't even want to add it up because I know it's more than that but everybody made a living on it. It was good. But now it's starting to shrink, and I think I'm not alone. I think this is what you're seeing the information is entirely subscription-driven, right.

1:10:09 - Paris Martineau
Yeah, also, I take back my Quip's book and some reports. Yes, they get. I think I just pulled up their 990 form. They get about 13% of their annual revenue, which is quite a lot of revenue from donations, but the vast majority of it comes from online subscription sales $122 million, and then $86 million subscription comma newsstand. That's actually surprising to me.

1:10:36 - Jeff Jarvis
Well, because they have all these specials. They have these, you know, car special and you need it, and you need it.

1:10:40 - Leo Laporte
Subscription comma newsstand yes, so they say six million members they call you members. It's 35 a year for the print. Ironically, it's 39 for digital, which is weird, and then if you want everything, it's 59 a year. So you're right, it is not inexpensive, do you?

1:11:00 - Jeff Jarvis
get absolutely everything.

1:11:01 - Paris Martineau
I think that there's some things for 40 a year is reasonable for the amount of it's well worth it they put dozens and dozens of hours into every single product review and they are and they buy the products.

1:11:13 - Leo Laporte
They don't get the products for free. They buy a car, all the cars they review, they buy. So it's an expensive project. God bless them. God bless the information. Jessica lesson has proven you can do good journalism if you have unique value, well, and that's everybody else.

1:11:29 - Jeff Jarvis
You know. One thing we I think we'll want to talk about a little bit is perplexity, but just.

1:11:35 - Leo Laporte
Which is an AI. Yeah, I do want to do that, yeah.

1:11:38 - Jeff Jarvis
But just one of the lessons I have from Perplexity discover is really slick and very, very good, which is something. But every time you go to one of the stories they do do in fact link, site and link to the sources. But what's so striking is you see how exactly same the sources are we're? Rewriting each other, that's right so nvidia passes microsoft as world's largest capitals. Dw, cnbc, um uh, al jazeera, the guardian washington post, they cite them all with the exact same story and each one of them is oh no, perplexity is stealing from me.

1:12:11 - Leo Laporte
No, they're rewriting each other they're doing the same thing you're doing they're doing unto each other. They're doing what? You've done to everybody else a lot of journalism and sources for years is beet sweetener, which is a term I learned from paris martin.

1:12:24 - Jeff Jarvis
Now, that sounds like a salad I wouldn't eat because I don't like beans.

1:12:28 - Paris Martineau
I don't know. I mean I think that. So the context for what Jeff is talking about with Perplexity, discover, is there's been a whole hoopla online the past couple of weeks.

A kerfuffle, I would say A kerfuffle yeah, some might say a big kerfuffle Over journalists at Forbes who found that Perplexity's Discover app was showing a kind of rewritten version of an article they'd published behind the paywall and they were specifically criticizing it. Because I believe Forbes one has a do not crawl robotstxt on their website specifically for AI models, but two, they were saying they don't think the linking is adequate. And I'm looking right now at Perplexity AI's Discover thing for DeepMind's new model and I can kind of agree. The links are like a tiny two in the corner. You know, the links are approximately the size of one letter and it doesn't say who it's getting from.

1:13:31 - Jeff Jarvis
How often, when your report gets quoted elsewhere, is linking prominent back to you Almost all the time. Is linking prominent.

1:13:41 - Paris Martineau
Yeah, it says according to the information, with a link on it, and when it isn't, we're very mad Good.

1:13:48 - Leo Laporte
As you should be.

1:13:48 - Paris Martineau
Every place I've worked has been the same um, and I mean, I agree it's kind of ridiculous. Journalists rewrite each other's stuff all the time. It's definitely more of an industry quibble than anything of saying, hey, you're not appropriately citing my work, something that I spent months like working on, you just rewrote it and are trying to skim traffic off of it. But journalists do get mad at other human journalists for doing the same, so it makes sense that they'd get mad at perplexity, especially because I think the thing that caused this to blow up is when the journalists from forbes were like hey, why did you guys rewrite this article and barely prominently note that it came from us? Perplexityity's CEO got really defensive and was like actually it shows on this webpage that most of Forbes traffic comes from Perplexity, so you should thank me. And then, like Forbes executive editor, was like that's not true at all.

1:14:42 - Jeff Jarvis
I've got to be snippy here for a second, because whenever I hit the Forbes paywall I literally laugh out loud. Who's going to pay for Forbes? They do have some decent journalists, but all of the contributor stuff, all of the paid content stuff has cheapened the brand immensely over time and among my choices of things to pay for, Forbes ain't getting anywhere near that list.

1:15:06 - Paris Martineau
Yeah, I mean, I think that that's a fair point. It certainly the brand, despite the fact that I think over the last couple of years they've done really well in hiring great tech journalists at least. It's an uphill battle and I'm sure it's made even harder by the fact that they have to be behind a hard paywall now and they have a brand that has been tarnished in recent years by business decisions that have diluted the brand identity. Now you have things like perplexity, scraping work as well.

1:15:39 - Leo Laporte
Is this an app or is it the perplexity website? How does this?

1:15:43 - Paris Martineau
work. Google perplexity discover.

1:15:46 - Jeff Jarvis
You can go on the web or you can download it.

1:15:48 - Leo Laporte
Googleai slash discover.

1:15:52 - Paris Martineau
Yeah. Okay, it's kind of like a news thread, but it is summarizing prominent news stories, I assume using Perplexity, so click on one of those.

1:16:03 - Leo Laporte
Okay, celtics are NBA champions again.

1:16:06 - Jeff Jarvis
This is news that everybody knows.

1:16:08 - Leo Laporte
Right Now I'm actually doing there they have prominent links right there right nbc news nba, cbs, sports and six more.

1:16:16 - Paris Martineau
Yeah, but scroll down, you know like you can get into more detail about it.

1:16:21 - Leo Laporte
The whole story is here, links are they're that and who's gonna do that? I think that's what people are quibbling over I think if you're just looking at who won the NBA championship, you're going to stop right here.

1:16:34 - Jeff Jarvis
Right, which is okay, which is okay. That's what TV does too, you're looking for that fact.

1:16:38 - Leo Laporte
If you're an enthusiast, you might use these links to read more about the games, about the personalities, the idea of perplexity to me very much like what I when I was using neva uh I. I got introduced to perplexity through kagi, my other search page, search uh is to kind of give you a summary page of the information you might be looking for and then if you want to go deeper, you can, but most people will be. I mean depends why you're going there. You may be well satisfied just going to one.

1:17:13 - Jeff Jarvis
I wrote about this too. I think we have to look at it from the perspective. So we, as journalists, call sources all the time and they don't get anything out of it. Maybe they get quoted by us, and that's nice, but they only get quoted by what we choose, and we make content out of it and we make money out of it. And that's what we choose, and we make content out of it and we make money out of it, and that's what we do. That's the way it works. I use the example in the piece that I wrote.

Becca Rothfeld, who's a wonderful nonfiction critic for the Washington Post, reviewed John Gans' book when the Clock Broke, and obviously John Gans and FSG, his publisher, get something out of it, right. But Becca Rothfeld rewrites his stuff, summarizes his stuff, to get an article out of it that fills her space and that the Washington Post makes money on. This is the way journalism works. And so for journalism to in turn complain that oh geez, others are summarizing our work, there's far worse at it. Business Insider made its entire business at the beginning by doing only that. We do it every week here, where we're summarizing people's work, we credit it. Do they really get that much out of it.

No, but that's the breaks, that's the game, that's what we do and that's how discovery worked in the past. You wanted to be covered by. I would love for more people to summarize my books and write about them. I would kill for that, of course, but that's the exchange that we made. So now comes perplexity doing this, or AI, as when we get to agents doing this and it just raises questions about how one becomes discoverable in this new world. If you were an author, you wanted to be discoverable through the book review section of a newspaper. If you're a newspaper, you need to be discoverable through search and social, and now AI, and it ain't easy.

1:19:03 - Leo Laporte
We're kind of crapified the whole place, didn't we?

1:19:07 - Jeff Jarvis
Media did a great measure of it, I think.

1:19:12 - Leo Laporte
Is there a fix? Is there a solution?

1:19:17 - Jeff Jarvis
I think the information is one example.

1:19:20 - Leo Laporte
Heat death of the universe will solve it. All the information works. I mean, there are a handful of newspapers in the United States that have a paywall, that make money New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, in particular Journal. To me, information is like the Wall Street Journal. You pay for it because it helps you. You make money in your job, you make money in your investments. There is a real payoff. There's a direct quid pro quo. The $400 I pay for the information pays itself back in information.

1:19:51 - Jeff Jarvis
But that's only one model, and when it comes to things about public discourse and democracy, most of our news is now behind paywalls.

1:19:59 - Leo Laporte
Well no one's going to cover the city council meeting. You could argue the most important news for you, for each of us, is the school board meeting, the city council meeting, stuff that's going to impact us directly locally. Politics starts at home and no one's going to cover it. There's no money in that.

1:20:18 - Jeff Jarvis
Well, but there are devoted people who create. The New Jersey News Commons, which I helped create, now has 400 members of people who are covering their towns and doing this Because they believe in it Because it's spotty, even though they don't make money at it. Well, some, some make some money at it. Bristinet just merged with another another outlet. It's been around for 20 years now, but it's hard. Making money is defined as being able to buy ramen noodles.

1:20:46 - Leo Laporte
Yeah, it's difficult.

1:20:46 - Jeff Jarvis
It's not a lot of money, but we have a crisis all around. I mean, I wrote a post some weeks ago saying that I've given up on the New York Times to a great extent, which pains me to say. The Washington Post is going through incredible tsuris. In California, 18 of the top 25 newspapers are owned by hedge funds. They're awful. Cnn is rudderless. The media situation in America is very, very bad and the information works in an area where it matters in business. That doesn't work, I think, for policy and public matters, and I don't know what we do.

1:21:26 - Leo Laporte
I mean, you understand, I have some interest in the answer to that question. Oh yeah, yep, as you do. Also Paris, right?

1:21:35 - Paris Martineau
As we all do.

1:21:35 - Leo Laporte
Yeah, and we all do. I think we should, as a society, care. I mean, I don't think it's sufficient to say well, we're just going to count on people who care enough to cover those city hall meetings, and you know, we'll just leave it at that. That's relying on the kindness of strangers.

1:21:57 - Jeff Jarvis
Well, the other kindness of strangers is public media or the Guardian, where people contribute money so that all may read it for free.

1:22:04 - Benito Gonzalez
Part of the problem I have with these.

1:22:08 - Leo Laporte
Well, that's what we do. I mean, in a way, I guess we're following the Guardian model, which is begging you every single time we can, but still offering it, for the most part, for free. That seems to me a good compromise. Fortunately, we have 12,000 some people who are willing to pay to join the club, and we have enough advertisers to some people who are willing to pay to join the club, and we have enough advertisers to make up the difference between the two of them. It is ramen money. It's not, you know, but it's. I mean, it's not enough money, for instance, to keep the studio open. We're going to have to shut that down, but maybe it's enough to keep doing shows which we want to do, we think are important. Maybe they're not important. I mean, maybe this is society saying, yeah, we don't really care what happens at the city council meeting. I think they should, but maybe they don't.

1:22:58 - Jeff Jarvis
It's a new definition. This goes back to your essay earlier about culture. We're resetting the definition of big enough and I wonder if, back in the day when you started this, if there hadn't been the advertising, if you'd had to depend upon the tip jar. What covers your nut? What gives you enough money to make it worthwhile doing?

1:23:18 - Leo Laporte
this. So we had a tip jar for a year and, as I said, it was enough money to do one show and it would just be me and another person. I think it was $90,000 a year, it was $9,000 a month, $108,000 a year. That's enough for two people. That's it and not including equipment, internet power, any of the overhead. So it's two people.

1:23:44 - Leo Laporte
It's ramen money, it's two people making $40,000 a year, and that's all.

1:23:50 - Leo Laporte
Twit would be. It would be one show with me and another person. Here's another way to look at it.

1:23:56 - Paris Martineau
That doesn't include producers. It doesn't include you. It doesn't include people we pay to be on the show.

1:24:01 - Leo Laporte
I know you would do it for free, paris, but I wouldn't ask you to do it for free. Would you like to do it for free? I'm just kidding, just kidding, Just kidding. I know I don't want to know the answer.

1:24:12 - Jeff Jarvis
I sell books, so I would. Um, yeah, but that's and, by the way, that's how a lot of media works.

1:24:18 - Leo Laporte
For a long time, I thought we don't have to pay people to be on Twitter. They get publicity out of it and that should be enough. But the problem is you people who want publicity. Yes, that's true, well, not.

1:24:35 - Jeff Jarvis
No, you're fine, but I mean, there are a lot of people you don't get that you would like to get. No. No, at the scale, though this is one of my favorite stats from the gutenberg book before the mechanization and I mentioned before the before the mechanization and industrialization of print the average circulation of a daily newspaper the united states was 4 000. If you have a suback newsletter with 4,000 subscribers at 20 bucks a month, you have a half million dollars.

1:24:53 - Leo Laporte
That's good. That's plenty of money you have Robin.

1:24:55 - Paris Martineau
No one's paying 20 bucks a month for a Substack.

1:24:58 - Leo Laporte
Oh yeah, that's a good point. That's true too. All right, let's take a little break when we come back. I'm not even going to ask you for money. I would do a club twit promotion, but you could see the the conundrum here, and if so, all I will say is if you would like to join club twit, we would love to have you at seven bucks a month. Supports what we do, and you can find out more at twittv. Slash club twit. That's all. That's all I need to say.

1:25:23 - Jeff Jarvis
Uh it's going to be very sad to see leo in a closet, actually, you know uh, now maybe this is gonna be filming from a cage.

1:25:30 - Leo Laporte
The club the club people said, no, this is too corporate. Golly was saying in the in the discord I don't like how corporate you got. You go back to the closet.

1:25:41 - Paris Martineau
And it's true that most podcasts now are actually from people's houses or less you know no, most podcasts, I feel like now, are recorded in a podcast studio that's shared by a bunch of different people or that see the props behind them right that change for each shooting.

1:25:56 - Leo Laporte
Oh, that's true. Actually, you're accurate. That's probably how it is, because that makes sense. You do a cooperative, uh to share the costs of the of the physical plant. That makes sense. That probably works pretty well. Um, we're what I this nuts, but it was really fun. We had a hell of a good ride. I really did. Yeah, you did. That's it. We just had a great time. We got to do something really fun. Thanks, everybody. Goodbye, we're done. I'm going to go sail around the world and I'll see you at the funeral. Gutenberg, animated by Dream Machine.

1:26:33 - Jeff Jarvis
So this was just a dumb example.

1:26:34 - Leo Laporte
But have you looked at the dream? This is the new luma thing, right, look at the other one.

1:26:37 - Jeff Jarvis
Look at the one above. Okay, uh, where is that? The uh? Luma extends memes. So luma is from whom? Uh, that's luma. It's dream machine is from luma yeah, but who are?

1:26:49 - Leo Laporte
who is Luma when they're at home?

1:26:51 - Jeff Jarvis
I don't know.

1:26:52 - Leo Laporte
Just another one of these. Oh, this was a hysterical one. I saw this. They made the, the guy looking over his shoulder at the girl. There's the, the fire, the girl in front of the fire.

1:27:02 - Jeff Jarvis
Watch carefully the fire. Oh no, you can't see that.

1:27:11 - Leo Laporte
This is a compilation. Compilation the fire truck became part of the house.

1:27:13 - Jeff Jarvis
Well, that's the thing. It gets weird because it's hallucinating and the guy who's the guy who's eyeing the girl in? They remake the. The machine makes a different ending. He ends up following her right it's fine for a few frames.

1:27:23 - Leo Laporte
Yes, oh, there's mark zuckerberg looking in my window very creepy, that's creepy it's fine for a few frames I guess every time I see stuff like this output of ai, the point is always well okay, yeah, it's not perfect now, but but if it's do this good now will you see what it's like in the future.

1:27:44 - Jeff Jarvis
Well, okay, um, I guess so I took a um, I guess. So I took an engraving of Gutenberg inspecting the page and told it to happen.

1:27:54 - Leo Laporte
I actually really like the Gutenberg one.

1:27:58 - Jeff Jarvis
You can see how awful it is, though. Everything messes up.

1:28:02 - Leo Laporte
Well, yeah, I don't know whether to say yeah. I mean, like that woman has eight hands, the guy's head is caved in, but it's still pretty cool.

1:28:10 - Paris Martineau
Look at the guy's nose on the right for any of the text.

1:28:14 - Jeff Jarvis
Well, gutenberg was mean, he smashed him in the nose.

1:28:17 - Leo Laporte
What was the original? Was this just a pure text? Prompt.

1:28:21 - Jeff Jarvis
No, no, no, no, there was a famous engraving.

1:28:23 - Leo Laporte
Ah, you give it an engraving and then you say bring it to life. Okay, you, they bring it to life. You know, the problem is you can't. And this is, but all of the AI that we talk about now is an extrapolation of. Well, if it's doing this now, what's it going to be like in a year? Exactly All of it. And, but that doesn't necessarily follow right. Never it never does.

1:28:46 - Benito Gonzalez
Never does Because, like, think about how computer graphics are now, like, oh, 20 years ago we were saying, oh, in 20 years we're going to have photorealism and you can still spot CGI in a movie. It's still.

1:28:59 - Leo Laporte
It's better, though Right, it's ever better Look at watch the original Star Wars.

1:29:02 - Benito Gonzalez
I haven't seen a full character that I see. Oh, okay, in CGI, you're right, and that's been going over 20 years and they think the last mile is easy and it's like the last mile is the hardest part. That's the hardest part.

1:29:15 - Leo Laporte
First, 80% is easy. It's the last bit. By the way, that voice Somebody was saying who's this?

1:29:21 - Benito Gonzalez
voice. Oh hi, I'm Benito, by the way. That's Benito.

1:29:23 - Jeff Jarvis
Voice of wisdom.

1:29:24 - Leo Laporte
The voice of wisdom is Benito, our producer, who also gets paid by your generous donations. So thank you. Thanks, club Twit. Thank you, club Twit. Sutzkever, ilya Sutzkever, daniel Gross, daniel Levine all people who were in the super intelligence division at OpenAI have left and have now a new company with the most dystopian name I've ever heard of Safe Superintelligence Incorporated. You know when the actual Terminator happens, they will not be coming back looking for Skynet, they will be coming back looking for Safe Superintelligence. Incorporated Superintelligence is within reach, is the first line of their manifesto, which is BS Building safe superintelligence. Ssi is the most important technical problem of our time. We've started the world's first straight shot SSI lab with one goal and one product a safe superintelligence, a safe super intelligence. You know every, every, you know Jeffrey Hinton is saying the same kind of thing these days. They're all, they're all true believers.

1:30:47 - Jeff Jarvis
Are the people who are not true believers just not talking? Oh, you know no.

1:30:52 - Leo Laporte
Gary Marcus is making fun of all of them, gary Marcuscus is the uh, anti, anti guy.

1:30:54 - Jeff Jarvis
Right, right, right, um, but I was delighted to see that, uh, I thought I had the rundown that the guardian finally wrote about, um, uh, affective altruism, and, and, and, and tied it to eugenics. So we're starting to see some of this being reported in the press at last.

1:31:12 - Paris Martineau
Sorry, paris I was saying. I mean, I feel suspicious about this for all the reasons we've talked about uh, this endeavor before, but also I was a little surprised to the name daniel gross in there. He's one of the uh and co-founders. He's kind of a Silicon Valley investor, a guy very young, who had previously worked on Apple's AI team. The name had rung a bell for me because I wrote about his earlier endeavor, pioneer, back in 2019 and kind of profiled him and was uh, an endeavor essentially that gamified the idea of pitching a company and building it within silicon valley and you had all these uh young people, usually in college or high school, that would grind and hustle for dozens of hours, uh, all at once trying to win a small seed investment from this guy. And it was a very like disturbing kind of reporting experience or at least icky reporting experience for me, because it seemed like this guy was. He told me he's obsessed with gamification. He has like google alerts for everything about it, he thinks it's the most powerful force.

1:32:24 - Leo Laporte
I remember that article. Now, now it's coming back to me, I read the article.

1:32:28 - Paris Martineau
I remember that I mean, it seems like a strange sort of person. Maybe his thoughts on this have softened or it's no longer the dominant force in his life, but it seems like a strange person to be leading the charge to design, uh, super safe, artificial intelligence.

1:32:45 - Jeff Jarvis
They're all strange definition of safe. Their definition of safe is doesn't destroy all mankind. Yeah, they said.

1:32:52 - Paris Martineau
I believe in an interview with Ashley Vance of Bloomberg today, had said we're thinking safety in terms of nuclear safety, not in terms of trust and safety. Right, right, exactly, and it presumes, Okay, yeah you're going to stop it from destroying all of mankind? I'm not really worried about that, ma'am. No.

1:33:11 - Jeff Jarvis
It presumes AGI, which is the first BS. Speaking of BS, if I may, leo Please, my favorite thing of the week is and we'll be nice for John here and we won't use the full word, but a wonderful academic paper. Chatgpt is BS off of Harry Frankfurt's wonderful book of the title spelled out BS. And this point is all it is is invented is to fool you into thinking that it's real. It is a BS-er.

1:33:43 - Leo Laporte
I'm going to call BS on this article about BS, because this is not. Despite the fact that it looks like a scientific paper, it is not, it's an opinion piece. It's an opinion piece? Yeah, absolutely, but it's published as if it's a scientific paper. It seems like a wolf in sheep's clothing or a sheep in wolf's clothing, I can't decide which. I saw this and I actually bookmarked it as well, but it's just an opinion piece. That's all. It is the problem is there's so much opinion everywhere.

1:34:20 - Jeff Jarvis
Well, how can you have fact around BS? That's the point. Is that you're making a judgment as to whether or not something has ground truth or is trying to fool you. That's judgment.

1:34:35 - Leo Laporte

1:34:36 - Jeff Jarvis
Anyway, I liked it.

1:34:37 - Leo Laporte
I know Actually you're talking about the Wired article. No, oh, you're not. You are talking about the one that posed as the… the Springer link yeah, yeah, the Springer link. Okay, so let me show people so they can see what. Judge for themselves, it's not on the right page, windows, you know.

1:34:56 - Jeff Jarvis
He's using a little tiny computer now and it's cramping his hands.

1:34:59 - Paris Martineau
I can't figure out how to use this. He's still going to update it.

1:35:03 - Leo Laporte
I tried, I rebooted.

1:35:09 - Jeff Jarvis
My daughter got Windows and I thought, oh, oh, how did I raise you?

1:35:12 - Leo Laporte
yeah, what happened there, boy I? Don't know uh, let's see. You said line 68, did you? Yes, oh yeah, there it is, there's the springer, the springer. So you see, you see, when I'm looking at this, it this, it looks like it's a peer-reviewed paper, Even if you download the PDF.

1:35:36 - Jeff Jarvis
Yes and information technology.

1:35:39 - Leo Laporte
Here's the abstract and here's, you know, and they even have a conflict of interest statement, but it's just three guys talking.

1:35:52 - Paris Martineau
I think this is BS.

1:35:53 - Leo Laporte
Nothing like what we're doing well, okay, I never said two guys, I never said we weren't. I never said we weren't bs.

1:36:01 - Leo Laporte
Do they cite any research or anything? Well, no, no, it's theoretical they got tons of references.

1:36:08 - Jeff Jarvis
They're definite, they're looking atally which is a very academic thing to do, okay, and they're looking at hard BS and soft BS. Is there an intent to fool us? Well, the machine doesn't have intent, but it's designed to do that. It's an interesting intellectual exercise to go through the definition of this.

1:36:28 - Leo Laporte
That's what academics do, investors, policymakers and members of the general public make decisions on how to treat these machines and how to react to them, based not on a deep technical understanding of how they work, but on the often metaphorical way in which their abilities and functions are communicated. I agree this is a good way to put that, although they're doing the same thing, but anyway, no one knows how it works. It's a black box. Calling their mistakes hallucinations is not harmless. It lends itself to the confusion that the machines are in somewhere misperceiving, but are nonetheless trying to convey something they believe or have perceived. This, as we have argued, is the wrong metaphor leo, leo, wait a second.

1:37:06 - Jeff Jarvis
They're from scotland, so now switch. Oh Much better.

1:37:09 - Leo Laporte
These machines are not trying to communicate something they believe or perceive. Their inaccuracy is not due to misperception or hallucination, as we've pointed out. They're not trying to convey information at all. They're bullshitting, and it's not great. Colin Chatbot inaccuracies and hallucination feeds. Well, we've said this.

1:37:32 - Paris Martineau
Well, I think I checked now. They're actually Italian. You're going to need to switch.

1:37:35 - Leo Laporte
Calling a chatbot, inaccuracies and hallucinations feeds into an overblown hype about their abilities.

1:37:41 - Jeff Jarvis
Leo is our AI machine. Among the technology cheerleaders.

1:37:46 - Leo Laporte
So they are saying the same thing we have been saying, which is hallucinations. So they are saying the same thing we have been saying, which is hallucinations are anthropomorphizing something it's not calling, and so what they're really arguing is we shouldn't call them hallucinations, we should call them. But I don't want to say bullshit, so do you mind if I say hallucinations, I know.

1:38:02 - Jeff Jarvis
Well, but what they're arguing is there's a policy implication here. I understand, which is true. They're right when we anthropomorphize and when we ascribe intent. If we just understood what this machine really is, it would be far better for everybody. But we don't, because it's been, especially with AGI and all that too. It's BS on BS, on BS, right.

And, uh, it's bs on bs on bs, right, and I know actually, you know what I just I agree with him um this is kind of a more stochastic parrots kind of yeah, yeah, and what's nice about it is it comes from the the harry frankfurt book, right as the basis, right. So it says, okay, there's, there's a, there's a nomenclature there that we should begin with but then there there's a New York Times saying AI is revolutionizing drug development.

Which is your sand in the socks walking on the beach argument yes, that's true, that's important.

1:38:54 - Leo Laporte
This is why it's such a difficult area to have an informed opinion about, because even people who one would say, like Ilya Sutskiver, must have the most informed opinions, or Jeffrey Hinnon or Marcus Gary Marcus, because even people who one would say, like Ilya Sutskiver, must have the most informed opinions, or Jeffrey Hinnon or Marcus Gary Marcus, all of whom are highly informed, have differing opinions. And the problem is, honestly, I really think we don't know how these things work and we don't know why they suddenly seem to be more useful than they were, etc. Etc. Etc.

1:39:23 - Benito Gonzalez
I think it's pretty obvious. It's all compute power right, is it?

1:39:26 - Leo Laporte
No, I don't think so. I think there was. It's more than compute power.

1:39:31 - Benito Gonzalez
Well, there's the transformer.

1:39:32 - Leo Laporte
sure, you got smarter, you got more RAM. Some of that's true, but that's been more gradual than this sudden hockey stick of ability, and I don't even think it's because we figured out a better way to do Transformers. I really I do think something's happened and I think it's maybe more related to the amount of stuff they've ingested. But again, that's just me blowing smoke too, because no one really knows, and I think that's maybe what scares people more than anything else. We don't really understand how these work, but I would submit, we don't understand how we work. We are kings of bull. Listen to this show. Uh, we, we hallucinate, I'm sorry, john, we hallucinate. Uh, we, uh. We make mistakes all the time and we can often say untrue things with great confidence we do expect that from human beings, though but?

but my point is why do you not so? Why do you think a machine should not do that? Of course it's. It's basing everything it does on us. It's going to be, it's going to be a reflection of us.

1:40:40 - Jeff Jarvis
So that's the most agi thing it does is make mistakes.

1:40:43 - Leo Laporte
You're saying it may well be. Yeah, I think it'd be foolish to say an agi will not make mistakes, that's for sure. Oh yeah, right to err is human. And we, we, honestly, we don't understand how we work. We, we're we very likely perfectly one nutcracker and you're out. We are stochastic as well. As far as we know, we don't really know what's going on.

1:41:09 - Benito Gonzalez
And this is kind of the bottom line problem with AGI is, even if we do have it, we won't actually know.

1:41:13 - Leo Laporte
How would we know?

1:41:14 - Benito Gonzalez
And so someone is just going to claim it and then people are going to believe it, and that's where it's going to start.

1:41:19 - Jeff Jarvis
Right, but it doesn't think. It doesn't feel non-kigoto, non-ergo-sum.

1:41:25 - Leo Laporte
Non-kagato, non-ergo-sum, thank you, I don't think. Therefore, I am not Right. Meanwhile, mcdonald's is ending its drive-thru AI test. I love this. So you can make drugs, but you can't make an egg McMuffin.

1:41:40 - Jeff Jarvis
Well, you can't even get the order right.

1:41:43 - Paris Martineau
Well, did you see all those videos?

1:41:44 - Leo Laporte
I think we watched one of them where they try and get the ai at 999 900, you know uh, hamburgers, and then it craps out for two years, mcdonald's has been testing uh drive-through automated order taking, or aot. The ibm was their partner. They're going to remove that technology for more than the 100 restaurants they sold.

1:42:09 - Jeff Jarvis
They had a, they had a technology division, they sold to ibm and then that was producing this stuff. The problem was that it was confidently making mistakes the, uh, the.

1:42:21 - Leo Laporte
The division was called mcd tech labs, so I feel so sorry for any scientist who says what do you do for a living?

1:42:29 - Jeff Jarvis
oh, I work at mcd tech labs yeah, I graduated from mit and then I went, I went to hamburger u for an advanced degree.

1:42:37 - Leo Laporte
Uh. In a statement to restaurant business, mcdonald said the goal of the test was to determine if automated voice ordering could speed service and simplified operations.

1:42:45 - Benito Gonzalez
Uh, no no, the goal of the operation is to see if they could cut people out fire people.

1:42:50 - Leo Laporte
Yeah, I have to say, have you been in mcdonald's lately? Many mcdonald's I was in one the other day, they're all understaffed.

What were you ordering, leo? My usual the. You go in there and it's a. There's a big screen, there's a bunch of big screens, and you press buttons, uh, or they say, or conveniently, order on the app, and there's like one person behind the counter going like this, it's all I mean. That's they. Of course they don't want to spend the 50 cause it's $20 an hour in California now for a fast food worker, or $21. I think they went up again. So I think that if it's a machine, if it makes mistakes, it's better than nothing. It wasn't just McDonald's. Who was it? Was it Wendy's? Was it? Somebody else was doing this too.

1:43:43 - Jeff Jarvis
I think it was Wendy's. We did the video on we're doing dynamic pricing, I think Checkers.

1:43:48 - Leo Laporte
Rally's, Hardee's, Carl's, Jr Crystal, Wendy's, Dunkin' and Taco John's are either testing or have implemented the McDonald's technology in its drive-thrus AI order-taking. I think that's interesting, but you're right, it's. I mean, they're not going to take the lawyer's jobs or the podcaster's jobs. People need those jobs, man.

1:44:16 - Paris Martineau
Podcasters need those jobs.

1:44:18 - Jeff Jarvis
Yes, we do. I'm old enough to remember when you had to go to the bank when there were no ATMs.

1:44:23 - Paris Martineau
And then there's the story of there was a man with a single key whose hand was shaking as he went in there.

1:44:29 - Leo Laporte
I'll get you your bills, young man, but remember we can't give you everything your deposits. They just built a house for Joey D and they built a store down the street. Your money's not here, mr Potter.

1:44:44 - Paris Martineau
They recently made a new movie about this, called it's a Wonderful Life. They'll tell you about bankrupt your money's not here.

1:44:53 - Leo Laporte
Wells Fargo has fired employees for simulating work. Workers were fired after the review found they were quote creating the impression of active work using mouse jigglers and keyboard strokers. That's from the guardian and that's all I can say because it's you can click. I'll do it later oh yeah, I'll do it.

1:45:21 - Jeff Jarvis
I'll do it later, that's because on the guardian everything is a gift link I hate lying to uh to do the paper.

1:45:29 - Leo Laporte
A quarter just over, okay. So, according to work from home research, just over a quarter of paid working days in the us last month were work from home days 25 the pre-covid figure was five percent, so it is, if my math is correct, 5 million percent more. No, that was an AI it's only five times more which is run by major banks among employers taking a tough approach on working from home. In January, bank of America sent quote letters of education to staff threatening disciplinary action over failure to show up at the office. Well, yeah, that seems like that would be failure to show up if you didn't show yeah, that's not great and you, and all you get is a letter of education.

This is, I think. Maybe that's them grounds to fire him. Goldman sachs sent in a memo to staff last year and encouraged employees to work in the office five days a week.

1:46:30 - Jeff Jarvis
That's not encouragement that's an order Every day.

1:46:32 - Paris Martineau
Oh boy, that's them wanting to cut headcount.

1:46:36 - Jeff Jarvis
Yeah, I love the mouse jigglers and the keyboard strokers, though US Bank Wells Fargo Sounds like a punk rock band mouse jigglers and keyboard strokers more than a dozen workers have been fired by fooling their employees, creating the impression of active work I was just in wells fargo with my sister two days ago closing my father's my late father's savings account. It took three hours. Three hours.

How, Like I don't know, the nice person who was at the desk has to call somebody at HQ that person. There was an hour and a half of that alone and then they couldn't figure out how to do this. They couldn't figure out. It was like nobody's ever died before a three hour tour. Um, so maybe machines need to help out here that's amazing, it is.

1:47:34 - Leo Laporte
So the sad saga of the very hot app be real has come to an end, or maybe not, I don't know. Um listen.

1:47:44 - Paris Martineau
I mean seems like a great end for be real, you know they got money not too bad.

1:47:48 - Leo Laporte
Half a billion pounds or euros or pounds, yeah, who would? Who would spend that much on voodoo? A french mobile apps and game publisher has acquired be real for 500 million euros. Be real co-founder andfounder and CEO, alexis Barriot, will leave the company after transition period. Most of the time he will spend with a keyboard stroker and a mouse jiggler. A Merrick Rofe, the CEO of whiz, one of Voodoo's social media apps, will take over as be real CEO. I can't believe I do this for a living, okay.

1:48:24 - Paris Martineau
Hey, let's try. The CEO of Wiz.

1:48:29 - Leo Laporte
After McD University, I became the king of Wiz. Netflix is going to open massive entertainment dining and shopping complexes next year In two cities King of Prussia, pa, and Dallas, tx.

1:48:52 - Jeff Jarvis
I'm almost tempted to take a field trip.

1:48:56 - Leo Laporte
Sure, you could go to the Bridgerton store or the Stranger Things restaurant Jeff, I think you would hate this.

1:49:02 - Jeff Jarvis
That's why I would do it, so I can have something to complain about. You would love it.

1:49:06 - Paris Martineau
Paris. I would know I would hate it. Absolutely Okay, yes.

1:49:10 - Leo Laporte
They actually have been doing this with pop-ups, right? You've gone to Insta pop-ups and stuff like that, right?

1:49:19 - Paris Martineau
Yeah, I don't know if I'd do it for a TV show, though.

1:49:21 - Jeff Jarvis
Oh, what would you do it for? Oh, how would they recur. What would you do I?

1:49:24 - Paris Martineau
don't know, maybe a local chef.

1:49:28 - Leo Laporte
Oh yeah, I'll go there. Netflix says we've launched more than 50 experiences in 25 cities. Netflix House, which is this new thing, represents the next generation of our distinctive offerings. The venues will bring our beloved stories to life in new, ever-changing and unexpected ways. I hope they don't hire the guy who did the English. What was? That the. Willy Wonka. The Willy. Wonka event experience. Don't hire that guy.

1:50:02 - Jeff Jarvis
When I was a TV guide. I once wrote a proposal for a TV guide experience oh really, what would that be what? Was it going to be? I thought that it was. It was like a mini theme park kind of. You know that you'd go to Roseanne's living room or you'd go on Gilligan's island really all the networks would agree to that well, that was the problem.

1:50:22 - Leo Laporte
Yeah, see, benito cuts right to the quick. That's why he's top-notch for this.

1:50:25 - Jeff Jarvis
But if there was ancillary revenue to?

1:50:26 - Leo Laporte
be had. Oh yeah, ancillary revenue I used to know, her in high school. Let us pause because we, our picks of the week, are coming up next. You're watching this Week in Google with Jeffrey Jarvis and Paris Martineau. I and Paris Martineau, let's uh, I'm going to start. Whoa. I have a very interesting page Timberfestivalorg. It's the sounds.

1:50:53 - Paris Martineau
This is the sort of thing that I would have as my pick. I know I saw this and I said Paris is going to love this.

1:50:58 - Leo Laporte
So this group, which is a non-profit Timberfestivalorguk, is collecting the sounds of woodlands and forests from all around the world, and right now they have a map and these are all all these gold things are buttons that link to SoundCloud recordings from that forest. For instance, this is the Baie Como in Quebec. This will get us taken down, canada, you think. So they credit the person who recorded it, in this case Monique Salat. She was doing this on the 25th of May on the way to pike fishing, recorded with a Samsung phone, so you don't even need a Nagra fancy tape deck or anything like this. It's pretty quiet. Let me see if I can find a louder one. Let's go to africa. Let's go to kenya. This one is the masai mara national reserve in kenya. I think it'll be more interesting sounding. I think you'll hear lions, so you can go all over the world.

1:51:57 - Paris Martineau
I love this, and do you guys know about the uh bird shazam app no, no, oh, yes, I do, merlin. Is it Merlin? Yes, yeah, oh, merlin's so good Reminds me of this.

1:52:08 - Leo Laporte
From Cornell University's School of Ornithology.

1:52:10 - Paris Martineau
It's an app that you can pull out and figure out whatever bird is going on. I have used it. I have used it because there's a bird.

1:52:22 - Leo Laporte
It probably is a crow, huh, is it black?

1:52:24 - Paris Martineau
Yeah, I mean do crows. I feel like it's more musical. It's a very distinctive bird song.

1:52:33 - Leo Laporte
Well, that's what Merlin's great for. You can record it and they will identify. The song here's from let's go to Honolulu. Oh, that's good. Now we know we're in Hawaii. Scott Weaver recorded this taking the evening at the trailhead of Kuli'u'u'u Valley Trail in May 2020. The birds here are white-rumped shammas, but like many animals in Hawaii, they're non-native. Isn't that cool? Sounds of the Forest, timberfestivalorguk. That's a nice pick for relaxing, Letting your tongue just buzz Put a 9-volt battery on your tongue. You're upset. Cure yourself. Paris Martineau, what's your thing?

1:53:21 - Paris Martineau
Listen, I've got a similar genre pick in that it has very little to do with anything we talk about in the show. I saw a movie at the strange theater I go to that used to be a bodega called Spectacle. This weekend called Hamburger Dad. It was a Father's Day special about a dad that one day wakes up and he's a hamburger.

1:53:41 - PC
I'm not going to be able to make it into work today. It's a hamburger.

1:53:46 - Paris Martineau
talking on the phone, yeah.

1:53:49 - Leo Laporte
It's kind of a Kafka short story, I think.

1:53:52 - Paris Martineau
It really could be there he is. There's multiple scenes of the burger smoking a cigarette. It begins with the burger. It's just a camera. Eat, Vivian. I am food. You eat it. I'm a goddamn hamburger. It's really. I couldn't recommend it enough. It's 52 minutes.

1:54:12 - Jeff Jarvis
What drugs did you take to be able to watch this?

1:54:15 - Paris Martineau
I had a single beer at the movie. It was lovely, it was a really nice time. Now you're Mr Successful right.

1:54:22 - Leo Laporte
Oh no, you know, this is right. You know, this is the long tail, jeff. It looks like it's going to become a porn movie any second it's incredibly low quality. It's 21 years old, hamburger.

1:54:38 - Benito Gonzalez
Dad the gear back then. That's about as good as it gets.

1:54:40 - Leo Laporte
Yeah, this was actually pretty good. Nowadays you do it in 4K surround Kevin Clark and Will Long it's on. Hamburger Dad and Cheeseburger Mom the sequel.

1:54:50 - Paris Martineau
I believe they have it on Vimeo. Honestly, if you just search Hamburger Dad.

1:54:55 - Leo Laporte
This is the short.

1:54:58 - Paris Martineau
This is a trailer that we have linked here. Oh God, they shot it in high eight high eight analog video.

1:55:04 - Leo Laporte
That's why it looks that way, yeah yep it was uh.

1:55:08 - Paris Martineau
Apparently it uh was discovered by this guy who runs, I guess, a blog called tape zine, named scott miller, discovered the film in the local filmmakers section of seattle's famed video store scarecrow video and re-released it in glorious vhs um, every screening of hamburger dad will be preceded by three short films, including one called taco.

A love story, a man it was, it was harrowing um, it really was. That man went through a lot with that taco. Oh no, eventually he finds the taco cheating on him with a bag of takeout I'm forgetting from where. Wow, it's quite sad.

1:55:51 - Jeff Jarvis
Do they project this on a sheet?

1:55:56 - Paris Martineau
It was projected in a normal movie theater screen.

1:55:59 - Leo Laporte
Did you have a couple of nutcrackers to go along with it? No, I had exactly one beer from the local bodega, and it was lovely. Bodega beer.

1:56:07 - Jeff Jarvis
there's nothing better, jeff Jarvis what's your pick of the week? So after all that fun and mirth, I'm going to have something boring and dull but important you have annual reports today. Yes, the Reuters Institute for the study of journalism at oxford university, which is a magnificent um academic organization, releases an annual report on the state of news, and I won't bore you with much. The one thing to point out is that the news avoidance rate people who often, or are all the time of, purposely avoid news is now up to 39 oh and growing.

1:56:45 - Leo Laporte
And you know why? Right, because marie le pen is getting is winning in france and uh, I mean the. The news is horrible, horrible, horrible. I don't want to, I don't want to. I was. I told you I was watching john oliver on sunday and it's normally a jolly laugh fest and towards the end it was when he ate a cake made in his visage. Rump first, but that's later. It was mostly about the plans.

1:57:13 - Jeff Jarvis
Can your visage be the rump? I thought the rump wasn't the visage. That's right.

1:57:17 - Leo Laporte
It's his visage on the front, his rump on the back. Oh, I see it's a long story that begins with a red lobster. Actually, oh, because he bought the red lobster. Right, he bought the red lobster and there was a guy who ran a bakery down the street who was miffed that this big network TV show bought up all the assets of the red lobster restaurant. He put a note on the door of the red lobster saying I was trying to buy this oven and this thing, and so then there was a local news story about it castigating John Oliver.

Now the problem is the way the Red Lobster auction worked. You had to buy all of it at one price. It wasn't like I'll take that, that and that, but you can keep this. You bought the whole thing. So he bought the whole store, set it up in the studio at this tv show. But he said there's only one thing that anybody really wants at red lobster and that's their cheese biscuits. So he made a red lobster that just served cheese biscuits.

So, but but this guy was incensed. This baker said you know, I'm a real business and this tv shows took all this stuff. So john hollander said he looked into this bakery and they're famous for these cake bears that they would make that had rather large behinds. And Oliver said look, I'll buy you the stuff you want. And they did. They bought brand new gear for this guy, but you've got to make a John Oliver cake bear. And he did. And it was a great moment, I have to say I I quite enjoyed john I would want to watch it, but I feel like we'll get taken down yes, he's.

Uh, he's sending the grill in the stove. News 12 westchester has the story kingston bakery will get the stove and grill after the staff meets the cake bear challenge.

1:59:06 - Jeff Jarvis
This is local news at its finest, that's true, well News 12 is local cable news, but so I wouldn't have done the normal report. But my friend, chris Moran, who's in charge of AI and data at the Guardian brilliant, brilliant journalist just took the report and put it into chat gpt. Oh brilliant. And, leo, if you would like to go in there, you can. You can ask questions.

1:59:31 - Leo Laporte
Oh, yes, I have to log in. Okay, what did you ask it?

1:59:37 - Jeff Jarvis
I asked it um what's the worst news for news yes, I think and think. And then I said I'm a journalist, should I be worried? And it said yes, Wow so huh. That's a good idea, I can't, because this is Windows.

1:59:55 - Paris Martineau
But if I yeah, he's on a tiny little machine today I can't do anything Humbled.

2:00:04 - Leo Laporte
No, for some reason my, my password hp stands for help won't log in. I think it probably was hurt that I did a one password ad earlier and it won't let me log in. So I can't log in to chat gpt, so I can't ask questions of it. Do you have? You have to be able to. You can sign up to a free account, I guess, but I don't want to do that.

2:00:23 - Jeff Jarvis
So I asked what's the worst news for news? Yeah, and it came back with paragraphs increasing news avoidance, news fatigue, economic pressures, declining trust, declining consumption All accurate, right, yep, yep. So I'm a journalist. Should I be worried? Let's see what it says. As a journalist, there are several reasons to be concerned based on the findings. And it repeats all the same things.

2:00:56 - Leo Laporte
It's confidently stupid yeah.

2:00:59 - Jeff Jarvis
So, however, it added in one more factor to worry about AI, and misinformation Says the AI.

2:01:07 - Leo Laporte
That's self-referential. That's nice. Yeah, I did like your other story about the pitch memo from 2005 for a little thing called YouTube. Yeah, youtube's pitch deck oh, that is pretty awesome. So this is a Sequoia memo that came up in a trial Match deck.

2:01:23 - Jeff Jarvis
Oh, that is pretty awesome YouTube represents. So this is a Sequoia memo that came up in a trial, ah, and somebody managed to find it and somebody else put it up. I'm not giving credit where it's due here, but in the memo itself, which was recommending the $1 million investment in YouTube, which paid off quite handsomely.

2:01:42 - Leo Laporte
So for $1 million they would get 30% of the YouTube revenue. Youtube ended up selling for $1.65 billion, netting Sequoia a $500 million for its $1 million investment in YouTube. That was a good investment. Well done it was so.

2:02:02 - Jeff Jarvis
at the end of this, as an appendix, they have the original pitch deck.

2:02:06 - Leo Laporte
Did they recommend the purchase oh?

2:02:08 - Jeff Jarvis

2:02:09 - Leo Laporte
They did. I first met with the company three weeks ago and we're in pole position for the financing.

2:02:15 - Jeff Jarvis
I hate corporate talk.

2:02:18 - Leo Laporte
Several VCs have been cold calling the company and a few media companies have also approached YouTube. I'd like to give the company our decision on monday. I recommend do they say who this is, because he deserves a raise. I recommend we proceed with the financing as proposed. Youtube has a great founding team. Check that has hit on several promising themes. Check the company follows a trend of user-generated content that started with text, blogs, images, flicker web shots of photo and audio podcasting. Only one of those actually took off, but that's another story. Video is a natural next step and youtube is well positioned to capture the lead.

2:02:56 - Jeff Jarvis
The company has not yet roloff bota was a partner at sequoia, and, and, and he's, that's who did this, he or she, I don't know what kind of name they don't take advertising yet, but our research says they'd be very popular with advertisers.

2:03:11 - Leo Laporte
Wow, steve Chen, chad Hurley, jawed Kareem, the three founders one million, that's all they gave them.

2:03:19 - Benito Gonzalez
Like, imagine if a media 30 imagine if that happened, like if a Warner Brothers thank god they did, or something.

2:03:24 - Leo Laporte
You know this actually. You know it's easy in hindsight to say, well, yeah, obviously.

2:03:29 - Jeff Jarvis
But I remember interviewing People. Thought it was nuts at the time.

2:03:32 - Leo Laporte
I remember interviewing Steve Chenton right before they got acquired by YouTube and there was some real question whether they would survive. Nbc was suing the pants off of them. Yeah, because people kept posting saturday night live clips on there. There was a real question where they could survive and entertainment industry was going to likely sue them out of uh existence. It's a good thing that they got google to buy them, because I think google convinced hollywood that no, no, wait, this is good for you. This is is going to revive Saturday Night Live. You don't kill this. This is how Dick in the Box becomes huge. Well, among other ways, probably not what they said.

2:04:15 - Jeff Jarvis
So the company purpose to become the primary outlet of user generated video content on the internet and to allow anyone to upload, share and browse this content. They did Straightforward.

2:04:26 - Leo Laporte
Now they also do the cost analysis, and I was surprised to read this. The best part about this technology is that it scales infinitely. We can add more capacity directly at the video conversion transport layer at will. The math for this comes out to $239, one machine one month. One machine has a 2,000 gigabyte transfer per month. He adds it all up, he makes it all together. The cost per video served is .00083 cents. Huh.

2:05:02 - Jeff Jarvis
Which everyone thought was insane at the time.

2:05:05 - Leo Laporte
This is really a case study in in club and correct analysis in in vision yeah, yeah and it, it, it worked out very, very well.

The the big player competition. See, if you remember any of these, our mediaorg open media network. I remember that one nope google video going after hollywood, not personal videos, small players, daily motion. That was the european youtube. Oh yeah, vimeo. Bad technology has potential for exposure owned by college humor and put file focuses on file hosting. Lacks community bad revenue model. Good research, well done. Target vertical markets with a need for video content auction videos for ebay, real estate videos for houses.

This is really fascinating fascinating boy, that's a smart, really smart. Uh, all right, folks, I'm sorry to say, uh, we have run out of ideas. It's time to go home, but I do thank you for being here going, going, gone this week and gone. I like it.

2:06:19 - Jeff Jarvis
That's a great there's one other story to mention very quickly, and I think it was Vermont. A Republican legislator was caught frequently pouring water into a Democrat colleague's backpack what? And so my only take on this is they have run out of new ways to be jerks.

2:06:44 - Paris Martineau
That's very middle school Owning the libs by dampening their papers. Yes, yes.

2:06:52 - Leo Laporte
Jeff Jarvis, my friend, the cards on the ground he is, as am I. He is the Lenny Tao professor of this and that at the City University of New York at the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at the City University of New York. Emeritus, do you have an ETA so you're coming out here? Are you coming back to California to testify again?

2:07:17 - Jeff Jarvis
Yes, yes, I'm flying in Monday, I'm testifying Tuesday afternoon and then taking the first flight out Wednesday, so I can be back in time for the show, and are you?

2:07:25 - Leo Laporte
going to DC as well, or is it just Sacramento?

2:07:27 - Jeff Jarvis
No, that was last week. I went to DC and I spoke at an event in the capital, Paris we know I'm doing this policy stuff. Now, I never did this policy stuff. Big shot, yeah, big shot Wow.

2:07:38 - Leo Laporte
Well, thank you Jeff. Wow, Well, thank you, Jeff. The book, of course they're books, I shouldn't say the book. In fact I found Geeks Bearing Gifts the other day in my bookshelf. Gutenberg's parenthesis at gutenbergparenthesiscom magazine, which Paris loves, and his new one's coming out in the fall, the Web we Weave.

2:07:59 - Paris Martineau
I just got my copy of it. Good, oh, they sent it to you.

2:08:02 - Leo Laporte
Good, you and I we're going to do a little blurbing for Mr J. Buy those books. You can get it all at gutenbergparenthesiscom. Paris Martineau writes at the information you should be subscribing. It is literally the number one source for breaking news. You got such good scoops. There was a big scoop yesterday. We're about to do mac break weekly in the big scoop. Uh, apple, yeah decides to cancel the vision pro expensive version yep wayne ma wayne and jing wayne ma, good job, boy.

You guys have great sources. If you're not subscribed to the information, you're really missing an amazing source. Of course, you can just listen to us and we'll steal all their stories. She's on signal martineau.01. No, I pay, and you should too. Thank you, paris, have a wonderful evening you are, you know what. You have a little glow, you have a little tan.

2:08:57 - Paris Martineau
It's good, it suits you and she's going out trying to uh get, get melatonin back in my skin are you, uh you going out tonight to something fun? I am going to a fancy dinner tonight.

2:09:09 - Leo Laporte
Well, I've got just the thing for you to wear. You remember we were talking the other day about the TWA Hotel, yes, and they said, oh, we heard you. We thought we'd send you some swag. Oh, you finally got stuff you didn't.

2:09:21 - Paris Martineau
Ladies and gentlemen, this was heard you.

2:09:22 - Leo Laporte
We thought we'd send you some swag. Oh you finally got stuff. You didn't. Ladies and gentlemen, this was all you. It's a TWA blanket from the TWA hotel. Well, it was a towel I think oh do you know what?

2:09:33 - Paris Martineau
I think happened. I got a package delivered to my apartment last week from someone like mid-century retail and I was like weird, I didn't order anything, I was coming home to get it. Porch Pilots stole it and I've been like cracking my brain ever since, being like what was it?

2:09:50 - Leo Laporte
I will package this up and send it to you, because you deserve this Paris.

2:09:52 - Jeff Jarvis
You found it and you live close enough to go the beach bag, it's a beach bag. The TWA beach bag.

2:09:59 - Leo Laporte
I am going to open this because we got to see the logo and everything on it. And then there's also TWA. Can you get the over the shoulder? Because it looks like TWA swizzle sticks.

2:10:08 - Paris Martineau
Stir sticks. Oh, that's adorable. I love that they sent this a year later, yeah.

2:10:15 - Leo Laporte
Well, they did, they sent it and, I'm sorry, somebody's tickle list. Your porch pirates must be so baffled.

2:10:20 - Jeff Jarvis
For those wondering TWA is an old airline.

2:10:23 - Paris Martineau
This is from like last August or September.

2:10:26 - Jeff Jarvis
Yeah, something like that.

2:10:28 - Paris Martineau
I think my pick of the week was the TWA terminal at JFK which they revamped. It's like an old 60s design and they have a lovely pool up there and they sent us merch.

2:10:39 - Leo Laporte
We're packaging this up and we're sending it to you directly, directly, paris, because you've got to take this to the beach.

2:10:45 - Paris Martineau
I do have to take it to the beach actually.

2:10:47 - Leo Laporte
Trans World Airlines package it all up. I'm sorry that you didn't get it and, jeff, did you get yours?

2:10:54 - Jeff Jarvis
I did, I did. I'm happy to give it to you too. Paris, did you get the?

2:10:57 - Leo Laporte
same thing, the striped logo pool towel the pool tote and the. Twa swizzle stick set.

2:11:03 - Jeff Jarvis
they sent an invoice $89.

2:11:05 - Leo Laporte
Wait a minute, we won't send you the invoice, we will send you the goods. Thank you very much to the TWA Hotel. That's really, really cool and if you are at LaGuardia, go to the TWA Terminal.

2:11:24 - Paris Martineau
Honestly, it's a delightful time. There's a cool pool up there.

2:11:27 - Leo Laporte
Yeah, I've flown out of there. Pan Am, TWA and PSA all defunct airlines, Continental, Continental.

2:11:38 - Jeff Jarvis
People Express. Well, that wasn't so nice, it's not?

2:11:40 - Leo Laporte
easy you would think you'd be. Cash making mint with an airline. It's not easy. You would think it'd be. You'd be cash making. Making mint with an airline it's not easy. Although they found the secret, did you see that united last year made 1.18 billion dollars in baggage fees? That doesn't surprise me. That's where the money is, ctwa. You should have figured that out. Thank you everybody for joining us.

We do this week in google every wednesday, 2 pm pacific, 5 pm eastern, 2100 utc. The live stream commences at the show's beginning. On youtubecom slash twit, slash live, so you can watch during our live broadcast and if you watched yesterday, you know that we're going to actually extend that to Twitch, youtube, twitch X, insta only lets you do one hour, but if they ever expand that, we'll do Insta and we're trying to figure out how to get back into Discord and you can chat in all those platforms, which is really cool. So you will soon be able to watch us wherever you want to watch us, but for now it's on YouTube, which is really cool. So you will soon be able to watch us wherever you want to watch us, but for now it's on YouTube. Of course, you can always watch us at your convenience on your own device by downloading a copy from the website twittv, slash, twig, or you can go to YouTube. There's a dedicated this Week in Google channel on YouTube. Who would have thunk it? Or subscribe to your favorite podcast player.

2:13:02 - Jeff Jarvis
And whenever you do any of this, I'm going to do the guardian thing. Now. Don't you feel guilty for not joining the club and making this possible? Join the club on you. Join the club 476 hours this year.

2:13:15 - Leo Laporte
Just give a little money in the club so we can keep doing this fun stuff. It's cheap. We want to keep doing it.

2:13:20 - Paris Martineau
Seven bucks a month, I have to tell you, you know leo is really polite whenever people do what I think is, frankly, a uh social faux pas and like at him directly on uh, like the online, various communities are like I'm not paying for twit because of x and y. Leo, of course, is very nice and it's like oh, you don't have to pay me and jeff are not nice. We're going to say no Shame on you, you should pay.

2:13:49 - Leo Laporte
You listened to how many hundreds of hours of content Put aside the money for one coffee or something. You saw Beth Marshall's complaints on the Twitter community, I think.

2:13:58 - Paris Martineau
She said I'm not going to pay for this, I'm not calling out any specific person. What did she complain?

2:14:02 - Leo Laporte
about. Well, you can go read it. She didn't like you Me. No, I'm just kidding, I don't know Well there are those who do not. No, she loved the show. I think she said she loves the show, but she says I don't want to pay for it. And you know what I said. I'm not going to talk you into it.

2:14:18 - Jeff Jarvis
You don't need to pay. We need a Paris Jones Pizzetto. We need a Paris pay up. Pay up. Pay up there you go. Thanks everybody, We'll see you next week. Bye-bye. 

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