This Week in Tech 588

Leo Laporte:  It's time for TWiT, This Week in Tech!  So much to talk about this week.  Of course, the election.  Was it Facebook's fault?  Mark Zuckerberg says no.  Our panel says Yeah.  What's happening to Twitter?  We think they should just give it away.  DDOS attacks and the new emoji are here.  It's all coming up next on TWiT.


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Leo: This is TWiT, This Week in Tech, episode 588, recorded Sunday, November 13, 2016.

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It's time for TWiT, This Week in Tech, the show where we cover the latest tech news.  What a great panel.  I like having the young people on.  I hate you millennials.  No, I love it.  Alex Wilhelm is here from Mattermark. 

Alex Wilhelm:  It's good to be back.

Leo:  And you brought another young person with you.

Alex:  I did.  My dear friend Lauren Hockenson. 

Leo:  Love Lauren.  We actually missed you a little bit, because you dropped out of the tech journalism scene. 

Lauren Hockenson:  I did. 

Leo:  How's that been?

Lauren: To be honest with you, it's been very relaxing.  I got on a fitness journey.  It was good.  Good for me. 

Leo:  The smallest journey begins with a single big mac.  So... you're doing a podcast now called Nothing Matters.

Lauren:  Correct.  Nothing Matters.

Leo:  I bet your numbers are going to go through the roof this week.

Lauren:  I hope so.

Leo:  You talk about the Tire fire of the Internet?

Lauren:  The Internet is garbage.  The garbage on the Internet.  Mostly Twitter, everything, politics, music, pop culture.  The Kardashians. 

Leo:  That's why you're here this week.  That's the topic of the week. 

Lauren:  Also tech.  Everything. 

Leo:  Who is on that show with you and how can we find it?

Lauren:  My friend and co-host Ben Timmons is also on the show with me.  You can find it on Sound Cloud.  We talk about everything.  Reality television.  Lots of politics, though, and lots of tech.  So if you're into those two things, you'll probably find something good. 

Leo:  The Nihlist's podcast.  There it is. 

Alex:  Nice Emoji headline there.

Leo:  Let's talk emojis.  Mike Elgan, who is our digital nomad, who seems not to be nomadic these days.

Mike Elgan:  Nope.  Not for a little while.

Leo:  His website becoming Nomad is about the lifestyle.  I can't wait to adopt your lifestyle.

Mike:  We would love to have you.

Leo:  Meanwhile, I just have to watch my distance.  I'm chained to this chair.

Alex:  He takes it home with him every single night. 

Mike:  Bring the chair; we'd love to have you!

Leo:  So we can start the show in two ways.  We can start by talking about the election this week, or we could start by talking about the new emojis this week.

Alex:  Broccoli before chocolate. 

Lauren:  I'm all about ripping the Bandaid off. 

Leo:  Let's rip the Bandaid.  I would bet almost all of us on whatever side of the aisle we are kind of tired of this.  We'd like to take a break.  I loved Garrison Keilor.  I quoted this when you were here on Wednesday on TWiG.  Take some yoga classes, tend to our marigolds.  Relax.  But we will rip the Bandaid off for this first segment.  If you want to fast forward through the first segment, I wouldn't blame you.  I think we have to talk about a number of things, including social media's impact on the election.  Let's do this in a non-partisan manner.  One of the things that is disheartening to me is all the blame that is being thrown around.  Which happens I guess every four years.

Mike:  Also the winning side. 

Alex:  There's a decline in civility. 

Leo:  Some of the blame rubbed off on Facebook.  I had mixed feeling son this.  Facebook is a source for most young people... I don't know.  Do young people use Facebook any more. 

Alex:  I Have disabled my Facebook newsfeed for a year and a half now.  I cannot read it. 

Leo:  I feel like young people are not using Facebook because Mom and Dad are on Facebook.  It's more than middle aged folks.

Lauren:  I think young people, as in a generation younger than Alex and I... both Alex and I have aged out of the 18 to 25 age demographic.  Even though I was recently asked what grade I was in high school two weeks ago. 

Leo:  Did a guy in a van offer you some candy?

Lauren:  NO, thank god. 

Leo:  I have two kids in college, and they both use Facebook a lot.  That's how I keep track of what's going on with them.

Lauren:  The kids are really into Snapchat and Instagram. 

Leo:  They use Snapchat and Instagram a lot too.

Mike:  Almost nobody uses just one social network.  A lot of people use Facebook and Snapchat.

Leo:  Do the kids use Twitter?

Mike:  Yes. 

Alex:  It's big in the Midwest.

Leo:  It's big in the Midwest? 

Mike:  Yes.  And in Brazil.  Twitter is huge. 

Alex:  The Trump belt.

Leo:  Is that a thing? 

Alex:  Belt of sadness.

Leo:  Now that's not non-partisan. 

Alex:  I broke the thing.  I apologize.  I retract.

Leo: So the argument about Facebook is that Facebook became a conduit for fake news.  Fake news being trumped up stories about either side.  Mostly about Hillary Clinton saying things like she has already been indicted, all stuff that was demonstrably not true.  Yet because people get their news from Facebook and Reddit more than once over and over again, it started to get the weight of truth.  The accusation, which I'm not sure I buy, that Facebook has some culpability for this.  That they should have done something about this.

Alex:  That's a two part point.  The first thing I'll say is for a lot of people Facebook is the Internet, it's where they start, it's where they go from.  For many people, they presume that what they see there has some sort of vetting, something behind it.  They don't look at it...

Leo:  Do they think there's vetting?

Alex:  Not vetting, but there is something there that gives it some credibility. 

Leo:  It's not just some random website.  It's Macedonian teenagers' random websites.  They saw there is a lot of money to be made in clickbait.  By the way, they're not partisan.  Clickbait articles that they promote on Facebook that drive traffic to their sites and they have ads and they make money on it.  I was reading an interview with a Macedonian sixteen year old that created a political site for this very reason. 

Alex: Bring down western democracy.

Leo:  My contention is... by the way, Zuckerberg's contention is that's crazy.  How could that...?

Mike:  I wanted to get to Zuck.  He's had a couple obnoxious things to say about all this.  The first of which is it's crazy to say that Facebook swayed the election, and then when people like me started tweeting so you mean, you're telling your advertisers that Facebook isn't influential in any way?  So he backed off that and said 90% of the news on Facebook is legitimate news.  You're saying 10% is false?  Second of all, you couldn't identify what's fake and what's real.  That's a very difficult problem.  Either you know what percentage is fake or you can't tell.  You can't have it both ways.  He's scrambling because he doesn't want... if you want to blame Zuck and think of this as a business problem, he was losing 30 million users a month.  His shareholders would say you have to fix this.  When it comes to making money, he never says we're not doing anything about this.  In fairness, he did say he's going to do something about the fake news problem.  They're going to do as much as they can. 

Lauren:  Here's the thing.  We can look back in terms of history when we look at what Facebook has done with news before.  They as a platform have affected the way news has been seen on the newsfeed.  Point blank period.  There was a time when I was on Facebook I could see nothing but upworthy posts, I could see nothing but ten way that will blow your mind....

Leo:  We hated it so they fixed it.

Lauren:  The issue is if you've interfered with the way news is presented before on your platform, what makes this different now, and what about this time?  And this non news is being disseminated through your platform.  What about it makes it an exception to the rule you've already set for yourself?

Leo:  But I've been getting fake news on the Internet since the Internet began.  I've been getting foolish emails.    I've been seeing on every social medium up to this point stupidity.  A, why should Facebook be held responsible for how people use it?  They use Facebook as a tool.  I don't think Facebook needs to be any more responsible for the content than the phone companies.

Alex:  That sounds reasonable until you realize two things.  The new algorithm that sorts and shows you stuff is an editorial product, and trending topics is also an editorial product. 

Leo:  I agree with you, they should dump trending topics.

Alex:  I don't care if they dump it or not.  But as long as they're going to be making editorial choices, what content they show, they're making a stand as a media company.

Mike:  Facebook is not showing you, they're blocking, they're censoring, whatever you want to call it, 80% of what the people you follow post.  Right now the criteria is whatever is viral. These false memes are designed to be viral.

Leo:  This is easy to fix.  Dump trending topics and make the newsfeed be most recent.  By the way, you can do for yourself.  Temporally sorted no algorithm.  What if Zuckerberg said that solves it.

Lauren:  It's two steps forward two steps back kind of thing. 

Leo:  You know why it makes less money?  You don't enjoy it as much, you don't spend as much time on the page. 

Alex:  I know eating carbs is bad, but fries are delicious.

Leo:  All Facebook is doing is what it should do as its responsibility to stakeholders.  Which is maximizing profits by making you spend more time on the Feed.  It has created a computer that is non-partisan and doesn't have an opinion.  It's merely crafting the feed with one goal in mind.  Your only job is to make somebody stay on that page as long as possible.  Got it, I'll take it from here. 

Alex:  I too am a capitalist.  I think they have a higher responsibility to the people because they have 7.7 billion...

Leo:  That way lies trouble. 

Mike:  Not at all.  Fact checking exists, it has been around for decades.  Organizations are really good at it.

Leo:  If you're a news organization.  They're a social media site. 

Mike:  They're determining what we see and what we don't see.  They're editing what's out there so that we see a minority of what is posted.

Leo:  They're giving you what you want.

Mike:  Here's the thing.  People don't want lies.  They think...

Leo:  When Upworthy hurt them, they stopped it.

Lauren:  Well, no.  Upworthy exists, they still do the...

Leo:  All that linking to clickbait articles made people dislike Facebook.  I remember.  It was like ick.  So they got rid of it.  They got rid of it cuz you didn't like it.

Alex:  Make Trump unprofitable again.

Lauren:   Also the problem with the evolution of moving it back to the most recent timeline feed, they censor that stuff and limit that stuff, because if you saw a raw feed of everybody you were friends with posted or friends of friends posted on Facebook, it would look like the most insane waterfall timeline. 

Leo:  I do that. I always look at most recent.  It's on most recent right now. 

Mike:  I look at both.

Leo:  I wish it would remember that setting.

Alex:  Let's stop talking about small points and talk about the impacts of this.  My Dad currently lives in Alabama of all places.  He works down there, so we talk on the phone more often than most people do.  He was telling me about voters down there that he hangs out with, people from the South, and the things they believe were true about Clinton.  I didn't bait him into this.  He said I was confused at what they thought was true at what they had read on the Internet.  And he said it's from Facebook.

Leo:  I want to point out that people voting in Geographic proximity have similar opinions.  Even if they never went online, you hear from your friends, at the corner store, you hear from everybody .  That's the story you hear; you buy it.  What do you want to do?  Have some sort of magic headphones that balance the information.

Mike:  You  don't balance it politically.  You have fact checkers, just like every news publication ever. 

Leo:  We have fact checkers.  Why should Facebook do that? 

Mike:  Facebook needs to... the things you see are based on criteria.  One of those criteria is it patently false or is it not patently false? 

Leo:  Who is going to decide that?

Mike:  Fact checkers. 

Leo:  Is there agreement among fact checkers?

Mike:  If there's a news story that says Donald Trump is Jack the Ripper, that is false. 

Leo:  There's a lot of stuff...

Mike:  You can rank things as the fact checking sites do, there are more than a hundred, most of them are really good.  Something is more or less true, factually true, or it's patently false.  Patently false stuff should get a ding against it.

Leo:  You see a big thumbs down?

Lauren:  Users already can report false news.  It actually exists within the Facebook UI.  It is three layers deep.  You have to go to I don't like this, it's false, and why is it false?  And then you have to say it's a false news story.  It exists, but if you're going to have a reporting system, you're going to do one of two things.  You have to make it easy for people to report, and you have to follow up with it.  If that's the case, you follow up, and people look at it and say is this true or false and they can adjust the algorithm accordingly.  In a perfect world, that's how the workflow should be.  At the same time, the difficulty is, and you said this before, truthiness exists.  There's always going to be a level of people who believe certain things are true, certain things are false, and certain people who believe Snopes is a liberal mind control organization.

Leo:  Why are we having the discussion now?  Had we won the election, the Democrats, would we be having this discussion?

Alex:  I hope we would be.

Leo:  We didn't have this discussion before the election.  It seems to me that this is another one of those blame game things.  We lost so it's Facebook's fault.

Mike:  Let's forget about the outcome of the election then.  I'm on Twitter a lot.  I'm on social media a lot.  I've been around a long time, arguing online about politics for several elections.  This is the first election where you couldn't have an argument about policy or politics.  You'd start to have an argument and what was coming back at you was you were trying to disprove weird things.  You'd never get to...

Leo:  How about we teach people to have more critical judgment?  And to understand what's true and not true and do their own fact checking?  I feel like putting the responsibility on Facebook to do this is the wrong thing to do. 

Alex:  No one is saying Facebook has responsibility to educate the American electorate.  But if they're going to make editorial choices like the newsfeed in trending topics, they should accept full responsibility of that choice, or do nothing that is editorial.  Our point is they can't have their cake and eat it too.  That's all I'm trying to say.  I don't want Facebook to become supreme arbor of all things true, because they're horrible at it.  Right now, what they're doing is bad. 

Mike:  What Wikipedia does is you come across a page and it tells you the information on this page is coming under suspicion, it gives you doubt about it. 

Leo:  Wikipedia has a fabulous system that seems to work quite well at aiming towards the truth.  There are obviously many inaccuracies and falsehoods on Wikipedia.  It seems to self-correct very well.  That's a nonprofit site, it's the antithesis of Facebook.

Lauren:  It has some of the longest standing information wars that exist.  It's by the power of the user.  If, for example. Facebook allowed an easier intake of false news reports, and they were able to use that as a guideline in order to create a better system for how they manage the algorithm, especially when it's fake news, then it's exactly like what they did before but what they've always been doing.  It's also in line with their policy.  The issue is Facebook doesn't want to appear political. 

Alex:  They can't afford it.

Leo:  As they shouldn't.  They shouldn't be partisan.  They should be a conduit.  This is what bothers me is you're expecting them to take a position!

Mike:  Let's talk about... let's take one specific fact.  The number of bots that were tweeting information about the election, they were seven to one Trump information for every one of Clinton information.  By doing nothing is Twitter being neutral?  Or is by getting rid of all the bots is Twitter being neutral?  What would neutrality look like for Twitter?  Right now, they're favoring one side because one side is doing more of this specific activity. 

Leo:  Should Twitter kill bots?

Alex:  There's a lot of funny bots out there.  We're going to make a joke of this for a second.  I can't talk about that bot because this show is family friendly.  There are a bunch of humorous bots you can follow that are very fun.  My friend is making a Twitter bot of all my tweets.

Leo:  I would submit that Twitter's biggest contribution was giving us an un-edited feed to Donald Trump's mind.  That was a valuable thing that Twitter did.  By the way, he continues to use it. 

Alex:  He has a real Donald Trump column in his tweet deck.

Leo:  Of course I do.  He's the President elect.  Don't you want to know what he says?  You use some brains and as a result, you look at this with discrimination.  I wouldn't want an automated system doing that.  That's my job. 

Lauren:  He also misused phenomenon. 

Leo:  Do you want Twitter to say there's a type-o.

Alex: No one is advocating that Twitter should go through everyone's tweets and tell them what they can and can't say.  All we're saying is if Facebook is going to be a media company, they need to act like a mature one. 

Leo:  Is Twitter a media company?  This is the logical inconsistency about what you are saying.  If you say this about Facebook you have to say it about Twitter.  Are you?

Lauren:  Do they have aspects of media that are directly involved in their platform?  Twitter curates news.  You can go to the news lightning bolt and you can see exactly what is going on. 

Leo:  I agree on that.  Twitter has responsibility on the Moments page.  They've taken it upon themselves.  This goes back to the age old responsibility of the Internet that goes to the telecommunications act of 1996.  Are you a common carrier like the phone company?  The phone company has no responsibility for the content of phone calls because it is a common carrier.  Under Title II.  I would submit that social media is that.  I understand what you're saying when they take on a larger role, it's  a slippery slope.  I think that's why I would advocate they take on no role, they stay a common carrier.  The minute they take on a role, they have a higher responsibility. 

Alex:  That's the entire crux.  They're a hybrid tech media company, but they don't want to be called a media company because they have much lower revenue.  If you call Facebook a media company.  The bean counters care about that sort of thing. 

Lauren:  This dovetails into the fact that all of this, especially in relation to the way that tech companies are seen, especially the Internet as a common carrier could be radically effected in the next four years.

Alex:  Are you talking about net neutrality? 

Leo:  Stop.  This is a second conversation we can't have is what will Trump administration look like in Tech.  My reluctance to get into that is it's an unknown.    We can say what he said in the campaign, I think he's already back pedaling on some things.  Many cases, he's said inconsistent things about a lot of things.  I'm not sure what his policy is because it's not written on his website and his public statements have been inconsistent.  The guy was a Democrat three years ago.  We don't know what is going to happen.  Of course one hopes that the most misogynistic, racist things he said and encouraged were inappropriate rhetoric that he will abandon. but we don't know.  What I would like to do is to defer judgment until such time until he says what his policy is. 

Alex:  I think that's reasonable...

Leo:  It gets people jinned up over something that hasn't happened yet. 

Alex:  Can we frame it like this then.  Given that Trump is now the head of the GOP, he is their leader. 

Leo:  I would argue... I don't know what the GOP is any more.  He's the President elect.  It's not a parliamentary system where the head of the party is now the prime minister.  I think you're right, I think this is a new era. 

Alex:  All I'm trying to say is...

Leo:  I think it's likely mainstream Republicans will reject what he does in office.

Alex:  That's a possibility.  But I do think the policy things that have been on the books that the GOP dictates for a long time, he looked at them as a preamble to what he may do. 

Leo:  I think that's too far.  It's a complete mystery.  I can guarantee you the Republican establishment is going what is he going to do?

Alex:  There was a story that came out two days ago reporting on the first meeting between technology and business leaders in the tech sector and the Trump transition team and they discuss how they approach policy and the Trump administration is that close enough to being accurate to talk about?

Leo:  No.  That's a discussion.  I would like to see actual actions.  Believe me, I'll take to the streets, I don't have a problem protesting actual actions.  I have a problem protesting something that hasn't happened.

Alex:  I think Ejit PIe is next in line to be chairman of the SCC. 

Leo:  Probably doesn't matter.  We don't know.  Wait until that happens, will you?

Alex:  No.  I want to gear up now.  You're 59! 

Lauren:  Can I take a crack at this?   I think this is something we can discuss, which is the idea that... Trump has gone on record to say he opposes the FCC's open Internet order.  This is something he has said. 

Leo:  He said it in a Tweet.  He compared it to the equal FCC rule for equal media acts.  That was in a Tweet two years ago.  I don't know if he still thinks that, I think debating Donald Trump's tweet is an exercise in futility.

Lauren:  What I was going to say is however, he seems to also feel sympathetic towards net neutrality in the sense that his interpretation of the Open Internet order was a knock against anti net neutrality.

Leo:  He's also said he wants to end the Time Warner acquisition by AT&T.  So... What do we got?  We don't know.  Let's wait and see. 

Alex:  I'll bet you.

Leo: You can't debate something he might do.  There's nothing to debate.  It would be a good thing if he stopped AT&T/Time warner.  It would be a bad thing if he pointed somebody at the FCC who would overturn net neutrality.  But we don't know.

Mike:  This is a complete shift.  I hope you don't mind.  In 2008, I wrote a column that I had come to the conclusion that social media determines elections.  At that time President Obama was running for Office, I said he's got more juice on social media, he won.  Every major election since then, I've looked at social media followers and engagement, and in 100% of the cases, in major elections, whoever has the most juice on social media wins.  Clearly this one wasn't even close.

Leo:  Donald trump is a master of media.

Mike:  Here's the question.  Is success on social media how you get elected?

Leo:  It's simplistic to say it's that thing.  He was also very good at getting mainstream media to cover him because he was so good for ratings.  They got billions of dollars in free television coverage.  I don't think we should over simplify.  It's all Comey's fault ,it's all Bernie's fault.  It's a lot of things.  I don't know if we'll ever know what was the reason.  It could be that Hillary Clinton was just not likable enough.  It could be we've had 8 years of a Democrat, it's time for a Republican.  Which, by the way, happens with regularity. 

Alex:  We can agree that CNN shouldn't have played so many Trump rallies in prime time unencumbered by commercials.

Leo:  Certainly helped. 

Alex:  Zucker's only contrition following the election was that. 

Leo:  Les Moonves says it may not be good for America, but it's damn good for CBS. 

Alex:  I should buy some stock. 

Leo:  We're in a different media environment.  You could trust CBS when Walter Cronkite said we're going to lose Vietnam.  Johnson knew he would no longer be able to continue Vietnam.  The New York Times used to be the paper of record.  There's some unhappiness with... actually you know who I think is taking the medal of NY Times is Jeff Bezos of Washington Post.  It's interesting.  WE talked about this on Wednesday. this is the new model for journalism.  What you need is patronage. 

Alex:  Call up your local feudal lord, kids.  I'm a post subscriber now.

Leo:  I give them ten bucks  a month.  They're still at a deficit.  Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon bought Amazon for not much.  He has been running at a deficit ever since.  He bought a nice new headquarters, digital strategy, has doubled down on things like coverage of the election. 

Alex:  Trump said he's using the post to save money on Amazon's taxes. 

Leo:  Another thing that Trump said is he's going to do an antitrust investigation into Amazon.  One thinks this is now Jeff Bezos extending an olive branch to Donald Trump.  Meanwhile, everyone thinks the stock market is in trouble because of the new president. 

Mike:  He essentially said I for one welcome the new Tech overlord. 

Leo: That's a dog whistle.  Holy cow. 

Mike:  One of the interesting things, Donald Trump as President is going to have massive reach and be able to bypass the media.  Here's what he's got.  because of a bunch of machinations, he got the personal use in perpetuity of the entire GOP mailing list.  He built his own, which the GOP does not have access to.  He built his own Twitter following @RealDonaldTrump, and he inherits POTUS.  His reach is massive.

Alex:  If he says it at a GOP event, I can bring it up.

Leo:  The great new meme is the Joe Biden meme.  Have you seen it?  There's a picture of Obama face palming, Joe Biden telling Obama "Yeah, I put tiny toiletries in the men's room for his tiny hands." 

Alex:  If you haven't seen the Biden meme, look it up.  It's fun. 

Leo:  I'll show a couple of them.  I'll be interested to see how Trump continues to use Twitter.  Right now he's got a biferated Twitter feed.  The iPhone postings are from the campaign, now from the transition team.  The Android postings.../ Trump says he used an iPhone till he got mad at Apple because of San Bernardino.  Now he uses a Galaxy phone.  Android postings are usually the most unhinged late night postings.  Seem to be from the Real Donald Trump.  I love the idea that we're seeing an unexpergated view of the President.  Isn't that exciting?

Lauren:  Then we'd have to say that Twitter is going to be a media company then. That kind of access to the President elect, based on his initial decisions, that's as close to a press core as we get. 

Leo:  We don't know what his policy is going to be.

Alex:  Leo, did you leave your cynical bones at home today?

Leo:  I am cynical as the next day.  For all of our sanity and for the future of the country going forward, it wouldn't be a bad idea to wait and see what he does.  Basing your opinion on somebody over his bizarre Twitter feed is not going to make any sense at all.  So far the people he has hired have not impressed me.  Bannon doesn't impress me.  His EPA transition guy doesn't impress me.  So there are things to talk about that are real moves. 

Alex:  In the tech world, neutrality and venture capital, that's...

Leo:  Here's an example. On the one hand, he's anti-immigration.  Silicon Valley wants more H1B workers because they can't find enough skilled workers.  We see companies use third parties like We Pro and India to hire unskilled workers at a low rate.  Disney did this.  They hired moderately skilled workers, brought them in, and had Disney's own IT guys train them and fired the Disney employees and kept the invited employees.  That's a misuse of H1B.  I do think Trump has condemned that.  He's also suggested that H1B minimum wage be raised so it's not a cheaper way to get staff.  At the same time, he's also got a pro-business stance.  This is unknowable.

Mike:  This is one perspective I haven't heard expressed, and it's a valuable one.  The way US currently enforces and legislates immigration is people at the bottom of the economic ladder are unprotected by immigrants.  People come flooding in by the millions to take lower skill, lower wage jobs, lower skill, lower wage Americans have to compete with those immigrants for those jobs.  Whereas in the white collar world, there is this ridiculously small cap.  The lawyers and professionals are protecting themselves from having to compete with immigrants.

Leo:  This is the other thing Trump has said.  Is if people go to Harvard and get great training and leave.  I want to keep them in the country.  Via the H1B visa program.  I don't understand what his policy is.  That's all I'm saying.  That's why in some respect it's a good idea to see...  On one hand he tells Apple if the FBI asks you to un-encrypt you're going to un-encrypt.  By the way, Time to start making your stuff in the US, but we're going to let you take those billions of dollars you have in Ireland and we're going to let you re-patriot that and it'll be your ten percent tax rate.  If you're Tim Cook, do you go Yeah?  What do you do?

Alex:  Remember when he called for a boycott of Apple during one of his rallies?

Leo: He himself changed from an iPhone to a Samsung galaxy.

Lauren:  It's basically shorting your political policy.  We're not going to know until we open the box and figure it out.  At the same time, if you say two things and they're conflicting, can both be true? 

Leo:  It is also possible we'll see that continue over the next four years.  In which case it will be plenty of chaos.  We've never seen a situation where we know so little about what is going to happen on January 20. 

Lauren:  That is why I have told my fellow youths out there that this is an opportunity to volunteer and donate to causes that are important to you. 

Leo:  If you've got an opinion, stand by it, and stand behind the organizations that... frankly.  If you're a Trump supporter and there are certain things you thought were good about Trump's platform, you might want to do the same thing, because I don't think there's a guarantee at all that he's going to do any of the things he said he was going to do.

Mike: That's a reasonable thing to assume.  I don't think Trump feels bound by anything he said.  I don't think his supporters....

Leo:  When you have Giuliani say we're not going to build the wall... that was campaign rhetoric.  Everything is on the table.  To get back to our conversation.  Social media, clearly important.  Here's the problem  This is a conversation we have over and over again.  About everything.  Tech changes everything.  We're in a brave new world.  What is Facebook?  Is it media?  Is it the common carrier?  No, it's both.  What are the rules?  What should the rules be?  And how should Facebook carry itself?  I don't think there's an easy, obvious answer.  In fact, I'm going to argue as the devil's advocate.  I think it's important somebody stand up for Facebook's position.  "That's not our job, you're supposed to vet what you read on the Internet, because CRITICAL THINKING!"

Alex:  Yeah, but that's like pixie dust.

Leo:  I actually think it's insulting when somebody says Facebook needs to tell people what's not true.  It's saying people are too stupid to figure it out for themselves so it's up to Facebook to figure out yes or no.  Everybody who has email gets fallacious, bogus, stupid, wrong stuff in their Email.  It's your job as a human being to not send a million dollars to a Nigerian prince.

Mike:  google filters that out and puts it in the spam filter. 

Alex:  You're advocating Facebook to build a spam filter for Fake news. 

Mike:  Here's a fact that changes the whole feeling about what Facebook is about.  They're the most influential organization in the history of mankind by far.  In the past, even moderately influential news organizations had a sense of responsibility.  In order to use the airwaves on TV, you have to have some responsible news.  Newspaper have a sense of responsibility.  Now we have a guy who is making billions per quarter on being massively influential and possibly determining the outcome of elections.  They're like hey. 

Leo:  In fact, Facebook executives are saying the same thing. We need to step up.  It's Zuck himself who is saying you'd be crazy to think we have... That is not the right tack.  The right tack is to say yeah.  This is a difficult problem. 

Alex:  I would take that.  They say, look we see it.  It's hard, we're working on it. 

Mike:  They did say that.  He said it's crazy to think we determine.  We're working on it, it's a difficult problem.  We're working on it, we're trying to reduce the amount of falsehoods on Facebook.  I think there is simply two things we need to do. Number one, we need to look at the algorithm, and they need to de-viralify things that are obviously false.  That would be a nice step.  Don't ban them like you ban other innocuous things.  Don't let them go so viral.  Take a couple points off.  I think the other thing they need to do is work on this filter bubble problem.  There has to be some responsibility.  Filter bubble is self-reinforcing.  The more inside the bubble you are, the more the stuff you see makes you more inside the bubble. 

Leo:  Get people out of Alabama, into South Dakota, and that would solve the problem. 

Alex:  We're going from Minneapolis to Tulsa.  It's going to be amazing. 

Leo:  We're all in a filter bubble by virtue of geography.  We live in Northern California.  Do you think I heard any pro Trump rhetoric? 

Mike:  Let's compare Facebook to television.  In the old days, when TV used to go over the airwaves, the idea was the American people own the airwaves, therefore we know you'd like to do nothing but have frivolous entertainment news channel ABC, NBC, CBS, but you have a responsibility because we're letting you use our airwaves.  Let me finish this onem point though.  So Facebook comes along and says we're going to replace the TV stations, but we're not going to take any of that responsibility stuff.  We don't want anything that's going to stop us from making massively billions of profits.  What they need to do is inject the other side, even if people don't like it.  Even if it makes people spend less time online. 

Leo:  I think that's up to people.  I followed all 17 GOP candidates, I followed all four Democratic candidates, I followed all the independent candidates on Facebook so that I would get all the content.  I think that's up to people who use Facebook to do that.  I don't think it's Facebook's responsibility or anybody else's responsibility.  I'll show you how we can highlight this issue. What if we had a public television station, a public radio station, and a public website that was legally bound to be non-biased, non-partisan, factual, and we offered this channel to the American people and said, "Look."  Here's the information you need to do this correctly?  What if we did that?  You find a lot of people who disagree with that.  You're talking about the PBS news hour.  That's why this is the problem.  Who is going to run that?  Not the Government. 

Alex:  Vote for me, I'll do it.  Just kidding.

Leo:  If you name anybody, you introduce bias. 

Lauren:  We're a collection of human beings with individual thoughts.  We agree with each other and we disagree with each other.  So nothing is ever going to be free from bias.

Leo:  You're asking to fix people.

Alex:  No.  We're asking them to act like a more mature media company.  I'm not asking them to grow wings and fly away.

Mike:  If they are going to become the public square, then they have to have some responsibility to the public.  Look at Apple.  Apple doesn't even let you have, they changed the gun emoji to a squirt gun emoji. 

Leo:  Which was a terrible idea. 

Mike:  All these companies, including Facebook do a lot of censorship.  Look at the censorship Facebook does for stupid reasons.  We accept it.  How about a little censorship for good reasons?

Leo:  I don't know how you propose Facebook solve this.  I guarantee you no matter what they do you'll say that's biased and screw it up. 

Mike:  Biased in favor of fact instead of blatant falsehoods, that's a good bias.  Why be neutral between the fire brigade and the fire? 

Leo:  For instance, climate change.  Some people say that's a fact.  Some people say evolution is a fact.  Would you say that's factual?  Or should Facebook kill a creationist post?  Who says that is factual?

Alex:  I think deciding between manufactured fake news and real news versus that is...

Leo:  You're saying some stuff is obvious.  We should do spam filters.  Delete the really obvious turds.

Lauren:  I think the base line, the excuse we are just  a platform needs to go away.  We are just a platform, we are a place for people to go.  We are a place, not a thing.  No, you're a thing.  You exist and you make decisions about what people see, hear, and watch.  So knowing that is the case, everybody... I'm not just talking about Facebook.  You can argue that Netflix has a vested interest in what they do.  They're not just a platform any more.  they create their own content.  You have these companies that are pushing forward their own interests, whether that's their own content...

Leo:  What if I say we didn't land on the moon?  That's a conspiracy?  Should that be blocked on Facebook?  What if I say 9-11 was an inside job of the federal Government?  Should that be blocked on Facebook? 

Lauren:  Facebook... if Facebook is going to make a decision about how it treats the way certain news is structured, the way that certain pictures are done, if they already have rules in place, they either need to follow...

Leo:  You see the problem with this with the napalm picture.  They did remove it because it was a naked 12 year old.

Lauren:  And people have a right to be upset with it, but at the end of the day, Facebook is allowed as a business... they are allowed to bring it back and say we're sorry.

Leo:  What they try to do is avoid as many rules as possible.  The best thing to do would be to educate people that everything you read on the Internet is not true.  The problem is they believe it because they want to believe it and there's nothing you can do about it. 

Mike:  Facebook is a creative company with a lot of really smart people.  They will move from thumbs up to you can express how you feel about it. News stories can be labelled as such.  Evolution, you can label it as this is a point of contention. 

Leo:  That would be very controversial.

Alex:  If you take away rationality and science as basis for fact, then all of a sudden, I'm a pony. 

Leo:  this is why you can't solve it.

Mike:  There's a news story that circulated on Facebook that after Trump's election, a cloud appeared over Jerusalem and you could hear trumpets.  That circulated, hundreds of thousands of people shared that story because they thought he was ushering biblical prophecy.  It didn't happen.  It absolutely didn't happen. It's false.  Facebook should ding it a couple points in its viral algorithm.

Leo:  I don't think so.  People believe what they want to believe.  The best thing you can do is educate people and give them information... a mechanical system like Facebook saying... it's going to end up being useless.  They're going to say Evolution is a theory.  Most people agree, but some people don't.  There are very few things that are facts.  most of the things I'm talking about in the realm of politics are opinion.  Admittedly, I don't think there was a circular cloud over Jerusalem, if somebody wants to believe that and repost to their friends, maybe that's an inspirational post.  How do you know that's not aspirational?

Alex:  If Facebook is going to make media/editorial decisions, they have the responsibility of a media company.  If they want to have a newsfeed filtered to another algorithm....

Leo:  Here's the problem.  Our definitions are antiquated.  We have this binary definition of media company versus common carrier.  That's antiquated. 

Mike:  Is Facebook a vitrola, or is it television? 

Alex:  do we need a term for a hybrid player that wants to not take on responsibility of a media company?  Like a platform plus?

Lauren: That sounds awful.  It's a super platform. 

Leo:  I can come up with a million examples that would be incredibly challenging to Facebook.  Let's talk about homeopathic medicine.  Many people believe in homeopathy. I don't happen to, I think it's scientifically bizarre.  Is Facebook supposed to block and ban all homeopathy posts?

Lauren:  It's also an opinion.  At the same time, if you put the tools in the hands of your users and you are able to intake that data to understand and also grade that, like I said, you already can't report false news...

Leo:  Every religion post is going to have that? 

Mike:  Your examples are off.  We're talking about news.  If somebody says, OH.  this homeopathic cure cured leprosy world-wide, that's not a question about whether homeopathy is something you can believe in.  It's a specific claim.  News articles tend to claim specific claims. 

Leo:  It's got to be algorithmic. There's too many posts on Facebook not to.  If you create an algorithm that says that is an assertion of fact that is demonstrably true or not true.  We're going to check that.  I don't know how we do that.  Then we're going to put a green check if it's demonstrably true and red x if it's not?  That's what you're advocating?

Mike:  My dream is when something starts going viral, they check it.  Just wait until it's...

Lauren:  I don't think it needs that.  If you're able to put it in your newsfeed, if you feel like there should be due diligence reporting from your users, if a news story comes up on my Facebook feed that says DNA from zodiac killer victim found to be Ted Cruz, I would be like Ted Cruz is not the zodiac killer, this is fake news.  They get it, and they said there's a report on fake news.  Wow.  Ted Cruz, not the zodiac killer, Pretty sure about that.

Leo:  I want to post a picture of Jesus on a piece of toast and say I had the worst headache and I ate this toast and feel better.  Fake news? 

Mike:  IF that happened to you, it's true.

Leo:  It's what I say happened.  Maybe it didn't happen.  Maybe I Photoshopped a piece of toast... where do you draw the line?!?  I just like the idea of a piece of toast curing my headache, so I post it.  Isn't that what Facebook is for?

Alex:  Leo, hard doesn't mean not worthwhile.

Leo:  I'm not saying hard, I'm saying impossible.

Alex:  I'm saying hard.  Maybe that's our difference there.

Leo:  The minute you do that...

Alex:  They already have. 

Leo:  They're trying to do it in a benign fashion.  Give you more stuff you're interested in. 

Mike:  In your defense Leo, the world of fact checking, the best fact checking publication in the world is the New Yorker.  Their fact checkers are legendary.  They have an advantage though.  They go line by line.  Every single claim they say is this true?  If it isn't true, they don't throw out the article, they would re-say it and tweak it so they don't make a patently false claim.  They would edit. 

Leo:  That's another problem.  I think it's a fact, because I remember that conversation.  Don't quote me on it.  Isn't life full of that?  We have this notion.  It's very black and white.  The problem is what I believe and what you believe, if it's different...

Mike:  We haven't even mentioned satire yet. 

Lauren:  Borowitz report is not satire.

Leo:  Borowitz report gets re-Facebooked all the time.  I would guarantee you half the people who read it think it's true. 

Lauren:  He's still looking for a joke. 

Leo:  You don't like Andy Borowitz?

Alex:  No one does. 

Leo:  He's hysterical!

Lauren:  Is this how your generation thinks Marmaduke is funny? 

Alex:  Oh.  We're going to make our own TWiT. 

Leo:  We're going to take a break on that.  You don't think Andy Borowitz is funny?

Lauren:  It's the opposite of funny.

Leo:  Our show to you today... that's when I knew I was old was when I started reading the comics page in the newspaper and didn't get a single laugh out of it. 

Lauren:  Wow.

Leo:  do they still have comics pages in your newspapers?

Lauren:  Yes.

Leo:  Do you still have a newspaper?

Lauren:  Only when I go home to see my parents. 

Leo:  That's what I thought.  The Times doesn't have a comics page.  I don't know. 

Lauren:  On Sundays. 

Leo:  They're saying you and I are those old guys.  Statler and Waldorf from the Muppets.

Lauren:  You think Marmaduke is funny. 

Leo:  That's the beauty of it.  You don't remember.  There was a dog and he was huge, and situations were funny. 

Mike:  Big dogs are usually funny. 

Leo:  Our show to you today brought to you by GoToMeeting.  Why don't you take a break everybody?  Cool off, we'll talk about emojis.  What do you think of the beard?  We're brought to you today by GoToMeeting.  Why just phone conference when you can high tech it?  Better meetings start with meeting HD video.  Means you're going to see the people you're talking to.  A lot of times we're going to have a meeting, it's a phone call, it's a conference call.  We used GoToMeeting as our conference bridge because you can have the phone call and you can do it over Wi-Fi on your iPad, it means more than phones, but then you're in the conversation.  I think I should show you this graph I have here.  Instant screen share.  I'd like to see your face, you sound like a pretty nice guy.  Now HD video.  It can take that conference call, make it something engaging, something special, and your client is going to love you because it's so easy.  Send them an email invitation, they click a link, 30 seconds later, suddenly you're on the same page, you're hearing each other, seeing each other.  Sharing the page together.  Crystal clear HD video.  Everybody stays on point, focused and on task.  It changes your... they shouldn't use the word meeting.  It's so much more.  9 out of 10 GoToMeeting users agree, they close deals 20% faster.  It's like being face to face.  Don't phone it in, GoToMeeting!  For your free 30 day trial, go to, click on the button that says try it free.  We thank them for their support of This Week in Tech.  You know, I blame Twitter.  I do.  Twitter has coarsened our national discourse.

Alex:  That strikes me as incorrect. 

Leo:  What?

Alex:  Think about 50/60 years ago. People were openly racist. 

Leo:  Now they're openly racist to the world.

Alex:  But much less so.  It's different. Those people are even on Twitter themselves.  I've gotten into fights with the alt right too.

Leo: Oh, well that should fix everything.

Alex: No, it doesn't. I try to avoid them. They're quite stupid.

Leo: I'm just saying. It's a megaphone for every bit of garbage.

Alex: Well my point it's less people being less nasty, as you agreed, as it's amplified.

Leo: No, that's the problem. And Twitter's always said, "Well it amplifies the good as well." I feel like the bad has outweighed the good at this point. I mean, how many times can you point to The Arab Spring and Hurricane Katrina?

Alex: The hashtag never tweet. You heard it here first.

Leo: Oh, I stopped tweeting. You know what? I did a passive aggressive thing. I put a bot on my Twitter feed (laughing).

Alex: Oh my gosh!

Mike: Good thinking, Leo.

Leo: It's totally passive aggressive. It's like, it tweets. It tweets 5 times a day but it tweets you know, "Leo's started a show. Leo's published a show." It's worse. It's a 3rd person bot.

Mike: Exactly. That's where Hillary Clinton went wrong. She had a lot of 3rd party tweets whereas Trump is like, "I am."

Leo: Maybe I'll rewrite the bot to say I. Hi, friend. I've just published a show.

Alex: Dash LL.

Leo: Dash LL. Yea, see?

Alex: That way they'll know it's from you.

Lauren: It's not like your handle already says. Doesn't say Leo Laporte.

Alex: Connect with your fan base.

Leo: No, but it's not like my people posting.

Lauren: My dad still signs texts Dad, like I don't know it's him.

Alex: I got a text today from a friend. He's like 55 and he singed it with his name too.

Leo: I've got to change my settings here in Textra because I have it signed.

Lauren: Yea, signatures in texts.

Leo: You know why I do that? I have a reason your dad doesn't have. I use so many different phones, nobody knows who's—you've even said that. Who's this? So now I sign everything so people know who it is.

Alex: That's actually pretty fair.

Lauren: Yea.

Leo: What is it the thing kids—

Alex: You text me at 4 o'clock in the morning again, I'm going to get very confused.

Leo: What is it the thing you kids say when you get a text from somebody that acts like they know you but you don't recognize the phone.

Lauren: New phone who ‘dis?

Alex: New phone who ‘dis?

Lauren: You say new phone who ‘dis?

Leo: See? See? I knew that by the way because I get that all the time. New phone who ‘dis?

Lauren: You get new phone who ‘dis?

Mike: Should I be at the children's table on this show?

Alex: I think you're at it.

Lauren: Just set up, just take all of our microphones and put them on like a little Fisher Price picnic bench.

Leo: I have to give Twitter credit though for catchphrase generation.

Alex: Oh, it's amazing.

Leo: It is the best.

Alex: It's amazing.

Leo: It's the best. New phone who ‘dis?

Alex: I love Twitter.

Mike: I love Twitter too and I think--

Leo: I hate Twitter.

Mike: Well, but you wouldn't—under the Elgan Administration you would love Twitter because basically all they—I think they should have pseudonymity. So you have to be a real person to Twitter but then you can have a fake handle and they know it's you. But you can't—the problem with Twitter is you can just crank out these new accounts every 5 seconds, right? And they shut them down eventually, maybe and then you can just create 10 more. I don't know how many people I argued with. I'm arguing with them about the election and then I look at them and they have zero followers. They have—

Lauren: They're eggs.

Leo: Why does anyone get in an argument on Twitter? Are you insane?

Lauren: Are they eggs? Are they eggs? Are they anime avatar?

Leo: You can't win an argument on Twitter. You can't do it.

Alex: It still hurts. I mean people still say—no, I still have a small fraction of my soul left. And people will come after me and say really, just nasty mean things that are factually false, that I can disprove. And so I fall in the hole and say that's wrong.

Leo: How does that work for you?

Alex: And then, they change tact and make something else up.

Leo: Exactly.

Alex: 85 tweets later I'm like, "I'm not a beta male, guys, come on."

Leo: How's that working for you?

Mike: Then you've got a beard like Leo, you're sitting here typing all hours of the night.

Leo: (Laughing).

Alex: I know. And so my point is even when I know better I still fall into those traps.

Mike: But it's true. It's true.

Alex: But I think and BMaster said it on chat a second ago that trolls are probably the minority of twitter users.

Leo: Oh yea, it doesn't matter. They're the loudest.

Alex: I agree. But I'm saying that we can all do better on our own and as well. We talked about responsibility here. I could not engage more but my ego is too fragile to let me not.

Lauren: In the great words of Katie Notopoulus, it's like wrestling with a pig. You get dirty and the pig enjoys it.

Alex: That was actually not Katie. That's kind of one of the older quotes.

Mike: That's the Mark Twain, right?

Leo: Don't put lipstick on a pig.

Alex: Because then it will kiss you?

Leo: What is it? It's like putting lipstick on a pig, or no, it's like teaching a pig to sing.

Mike: It has something to do with a pig.

Alex: Can we stop with the porcine analogies?

Lauren: That must have been a Family Circus show.

Leo: I Googled it. I Googled it.

Alex: One circle of not funny.

Leo: Never, and I think it is, it's George Barnard Shaw I think. No, that can't be right.

Alex: No, it's Katie Notopoulus.

Leo: Never, never try—

Lauren: Katie Notopouslus said it.

Leo: Wait a minute. Never try to teach a pig to sing. It wastes your time and it annoys the pig.

Alex: That's a similar quote.

Leo: Yea.

Alex: The pig wrestling one implies that the pig actually has fun.

Lauren: Yea.

Leo: And—

Lauren: Which is true.

Leo: Actually, oh wait. Katie gets credit because George Barnard Shaw said, "I learned long ago never to wrestle with a pig. You get dirty and besides the pig likes it."

Lauren: She said it, yea.

Leo: George Barnard Shaw.

Alex: Also known as her BuzzFeed.

Lauren: Yea, well, she quoted it in a piece about the time that she was in a Twitter fight with the lead singer from Blues Traveler.

Alex: Oh, that was an amazing piece.

Lauren: That's amazing. If you have not looked that up.

Alex: No, it's actually quite exciting.

Lauren: It's really good.

Leo: What were they fighting over, harmonica?

Lauren: No, I believe that she—I can't remember what it was but I believe that she said John Popper from Blues Traveler was fat and sad. And it got, it was an amazing Twitter fight that actually ended up in his book where he gave her like a backhanded, like some rude journalist sort of made this. And she was like, "I was making a joke."

Leo: This is my point exactly is that this woman was able to post something on a site that John Popper saw and it hurt his feelings.

Lauren: Got into a Blues Traveler book I know.

Leo: I mean that's just wrong. Farhad Manjoo today has announced he's breaking up with Twitter.

Alex: This is so sad.

Leo: This is his post today in the Sunday New York Times. And he says the same thing everybody says which is Twitter's totally addictive. But it feels like an addiction. It's habit forming. He says, "The thrill of Twitter this year was visceral and habit-forming. It was a show that never stopped, the fireworks display you couldn't keep your eyes off even as it grew dangerously bright and transfixing, and then set the whole town on fire and invited floods and locusts and plague, too."

Mike: Is that factually true though?

Leo: No. Boom. X.

Alex: You've got to check that out.

Leo: The last 24 hours you've been on—82% of your phone battery usage was Twitter.

Alex: In the last 6 days.

Mike: Wow.

Leo: In the last 6 days.

Alex: That's low.

Leo: The next, number 2, the number 2 app, Spotify coming in at 4%.

Alex: Yea.

Leo: Now is that because Twitter uses more battery or because you live on Twitter?

Alex: I wake up to Twitter. I go to bed to Twitter. I tweet when you're not talking. Twitter is my constant newsfeed of everything in the world.

Mike: I actually recently boosted my productivity in writing massively by spending 5 hours a day, 5 hours a day, from noon to 5:00 PM, no Twitter. I don't allow myself to use Twitter.

Leo: And Steve Kovach who we know and love, Business Insider. "Twitter is toxic. I can't stand it anymore. I started regularly deleting my tweets this summer and unfollowed everyone and started over." See, there's the problem. Started over. He didn't leave. He just—

Mike: There's a better way. There's a better way.

Alex: A lot of my friends have done this. Ryan Lawler did that.

Lauren: Tim Herrera.

Leo: "It's making me sad. It's driving me nuts and it's making me sad." I agree, Steve.

Mike: The secret is you have two Twitter accounts at least. I have 5. We've gone into this before and—

Leo: You wrote a whole article on this. And I started to set it up and then I just threw up my hands.

Mike: Yea, but at least two. Have one for incoming tweets and have another one for networking, following your friends and colleagues and that sort of thing and it's very powerful.

Alex: I had two in college. I had my main account and then I had @alexisdrunk that I would use about 8:00 PM on. It was fantastic.

Leo: That's what Donald should do.

Alex: Yea, I know, right?

Leo: Because most of his Android tweets are late night.

Alex: He doesn't drink.

Leo: Oh, then there's no—

Mike: He should. He should start.

Lauren: I actually have spent less time on Twitter probably because I left the journalism game. Maybe that's why. But—

Leo: Well that's what Farhad said. It's the tech journalists, the media, the Silicon Valley Types. That's who's using it.

Lauren: We're the pigeons of Twitter. We're there at like all hours. We're always there. I think that the important thing that I found especially when it comes to stating opinions that might me controversial or disagreed by some is that I say what I want and then I log off. I go take a walk. I enjoy my favorite beverage. Maybe I might play a video game. And then if somebody says something substantive to me that I believe is worth responding too, I'll amplify and do so otherwise. But you know, like the usual go make a sandwich or whatever, I just.

Mike: You're talking crazy, Lauren.

Lauren: I know.

Mike: That's just crazy.

Alex: I mean I respect your work life or your Twitter life balance. I just, I feel like I would miss out on something.

Leo: You know what's interesting is that I think that most people would agree that if you stopped looking at Twitter and Facebook, your life would generally be better.

Mike: Yea.

Leo: But we can't do it. You may not agree.

Alex: No, I would disagree in a personal aside. Because I get to read across the spectrum politically, around the world. I get to read economic news from Brazil. I get to hear about Russian banks, Chinese real estate. I mean the things that I care about are constantly pulsing at different times of the day. So when I go to bed to Twitter it's a different Twitter than I get in the morning.

Leo: No, that's true.

Mike: The other thing to keep in mind is that Twitter is simply—your experience of Twitter is whoever you follow. And so I'm very particular about who I follow. I follow some brilliant people. There are some people on Twitter that make me laugh, that inform me of things. I have all the breaking news sites. And so I absolutely love it. But if you just follow people willy nilly, if I actually followed my Mike Elgan account, forget it. That would be crazy. But the secret account that I have that I actually follow is fantastic. If you want to—let's say for example as an extreme version, let's say that the best Twitter account in the world would be @pmarca maybe, so Andreesen.

Alex: Oh, Mark, yea.

Mike: Yea, Mark Andreesen.

Leo: Who is by the way, stopped tweeting.

Alex: He always gets in trouble though. He tweets himself in India.

Leo: But there's a perfect example of he stopped tweeting.

Mike: Well, Farhad Manjoo is great on Twitter, too. He's great to follow as well.

Leo: He stopped tweeting.

Mike: Well, anyway. Imagine if you can—

Alex: Don't encourage them, Leo. It's all I have left in life.

Leo: By the way, if you watch 60 minutes tonight, President-Elect Trump is going to be on it. And you know what he's going to say? "I love Twitter." He actually talks about Twitter on 60 minutes tonight.

Mike: Their stock is up.

Leo: Lesly Stahl says, "Are you going to be tweeting and whatever you're upset about just put out there when you're president?" Trump said, "It's a modern form of communication. Between Facebook and Twitter and I guess Instagram, I have 28 million people. 28 million people." "So are you going to keep it up?" asked Stahl. "It's a great form of communication," Trump said. "Now do I say I'll give it up entirely and throw it out? That's a tremendous form. I'm picking it up now. I think I picked up yesterday 100,000 people. I'm not saying I love it." This is like what everybody says.

Alex: Hearing you read his actual words in order is painful.

Leo: I know, it's very hard to read because it's tactically torture.

Alex: "I think I picked up yesterday 100,000 people." That, if I turned that in I would have been fired.

Leo: I know. I'm not saying I love it but it does get the word out.

Alex: He loves it.

Mike: I think in theory it's great that a President tweets. It's a fireside chat that never ends.

Leo: Right.

Mike: A dumpster fireside shat.

Leo: It's direct.

Alex: Our whole nation is the dumpster on fire.

Leo: Whatever. It's a direct channel to the person and frankly, if it turns out a president is corrupt or stupid or venal or racist or bad, we'll know. It's a lot easier than the Imperial Presidency where previous presidents have hidden behind their press secretary and we don't know what the think. Dick Nixon was sitting in the White House swearing at black people, swearing at hippies, saying horrific things. We know now because of the tapes but you wouldn't have known it then because the New York Times doesn't say, "Dick Nixon hates black people."

Alex: They weren't there. So you're point's access.

Leo: We now can see it in unmediated—

Alex: The downside is our enemies can also see it and be like, "This guy's crazy. Quick, launch the nukes."

Mike: The difference is that Dick Nixon had a filter whereas President Trump may not have such a filter.

Leo: Which is why I'm glad he uses Twitter and I hope he does, I pray he does, continue to use Twitter.

Alex: My gosh.

Leo: And that his people do not take away his phone again. Because that was so boring for like three days.

Alex: Can you imagine, like America goes to war and he's like, "America, we're going to war. It's going to be the greatest war ever. I saw an explosion. It was awesome."

Leo: Yes, yes, yes. But you'll know. Then you'll know.

Alex: 4th of July everywhere.

Leo: And you'll know. You'll say I saw people on the rooftops, Muslims on rooftops weeping. Weeping. Anyway, I'm sorry. I lost my head. I do as a journalist use Twitter and Facebook in a different way because it's part of my beat check. So every news person has, you know, they go through sources in the morning and I actually do it four or five times a day. And it is a good source.

Mike: Yea, crowdsourcing.

Leo: Yea. And in an article that everybody's reading you'll see that. But you know, Jonathan Abrams was on TWiT a week ago, the creator of Nuzzle. That's kind of what Nuzzle is designed to do is to skim through your Twitter and Facebook accounts and give you the stories your friends are talking about. In a way, this is a more efficient way.

Lauren: Yea, I was going to say that I don't know if Twitter does anything in terms of news curation that are really well-curated in the RSS feed.

Leo: Well isn't that a problem?

Lauren: Well, the thing is for me I don't necessarily go to Twitter for news unless it's breaking. I look at it to see what the conversation is. I look at it to see how people are discussing news rather than the news itself.

Leo: Ah, interesting.

Lauren: If I'm learning, unless it's an immediate breaking news story, if it's news of the day, I'm probably getting it off of a RSS reader. I'm probably getting it off of the sites that I frequent. It's part of my natural news gathering experience. As Alex knows, him and his house of tabs that he lives in, you just have so many tabs open, you read and you refresh and that's part of the news gathering game. I think that Twitter's real thing is the conversation. So if you want to separate the two, I mean Nuzzle's a great way to do so I will say.

Mike: The only downside of Nuzzle, and I know he's a friend of yours and a guest on the show sometimes, but you have to have a lot of followers for it to really work. I mean you have a ton of followers. But if you only have like 500 followers, you know.

Leo: It's based on your followers.

Mike: Exactly so it's problematic for people that have fewer followers.

Leo: Right.

Alex: Also if you read your feed at all compulsively, by the time you get to your Nuzzle, it's so far out of date you're kind of laughing like that's so 47 minutes ago.

Leo: That's a good point.

Alex: 47 minutes is a long time on the internet.

Leo: But I do think this also, generational difference in how people use Twitter because I don't, the conversation to me is exactly what I don't want to see.

Lauren: Really?

Leo: Yea, that's the stuff that's kind of throwaway. But you're—I think you young people, that's, you live for that back and forth, right, that you know, that messaging, Snapchat.

Alex: Yea, because it's so awesome, Leo. I mean I have friends around the world. I'm in their NSF. We meet from the internet to the real world. So it's really expanded my network of humans in a way that could never happen with pen pals and telegrams. And so now I feel like I have access to everyone—

Leo: Yes, because when I was a child, pen pals and telegrams, we learned that world.

Alex: Leo actually founded the Pony Express, little did you know. No, but I mean to me it enriches my life in ways—

Leo: I have telegram pals.

Alex: Once old man Leo is done shaking his cane at children, I'll finish my point.

Leo: (Laughing) go ahead. Sorry.

Alex: My life is richer and I'm smarter for it. And I know it's a lot of work and messy.

Leo: Well that's debatable.

Alex: I could be a lot dumber. Watch out.

Leo: That's true. I don't know what the baseline is.

Lauren: I also think that Twitter is—

Alex: Look in the mirror and find out.

Lauren: (Laughing).

Leo: And this is why you watch Twitter, right? For this kind of back and forth, yea.

Alex: This is what we do all day.

Leo: This is what I hate.

Alex: You're brilliant by the way.

Leo: I read Twitter and that's the other problem is it's the language that you guys speak. I read it, I think I'm having a stroke. It's like, I don't, what are they, what is going on? What are they saying? I don't understand.

Alex: I'll be your interpreter for a quarter a million a year.

Leo: No, you know, because it's like ok. You know what it's really like? License plates. So you're driving behind somebody and it says 4U2Baler. And I go, ok I'm thinking, what is that?

Mike: And then you crash into a pole.

Leo: And then you crash into a car. Twitter's just like that. It's like a bunch of license plates that you have to decipher, every tweet, right? Or your mind, it just goes oh, I understand what they're saying. I understand what they're saying.

Lauren: I mean I personally use it as way—what I was going to say is there are, if you want to bring it into a news context, for example, there are a lot of great reporters who tweet, who often tweet extra color into their story.

Leo: That's who I follow.

Lauren: Who often tweet about the process of news gathering. You know, they tweet about their conversations. Sometimes they'll tweet about something that's coming up and they're like, "Watch out, there's going to be something new." And I really like that aspect of it.

Leo: Here is, by the way, a new Twitter account, Transition 2017. The Transition Team has a Twitter account.

Mike: And it's run by his eleven-year-old son.

Leo: You know what? He's great with the cyber.

Alex: Hey, hey, hey, hey. We're not doing Barron jokes.

Leo: We're not doing Barron jokes. No, you're right. Or Melania jokes.

Alex: Kids are off limits.

Leo: Kids and wives off limits.

Alex: Spouses.

Leo: Spouses of any kind.

Alex: Agreed.

Leo: Could be any gender.

Alex: Exactly.

Lauren: And dogs.

Mike: Why are spouses off limits?

Alex: Because we're nice people.

Leo: Because poor Melania did not sign up for this. Or maybe she did. I don't know.

Lauren: Dogs also. Be nice to dogs. They tell the truth.

Leo: Dogs, same thing. Let's not you know—but I do find this encouraging. I would like to see many Twitter accounts from the White House. I think that's a valuable—look, maybe they don't give press conferences but they do this? That's not so bad.

Alex: It's not dumb but I'll take it as a conciliatory option.

Leo: It's better than nothing.

Alex: Most things are.

Leo: Especially if it's like un—you know, filtered.

Alex: Hinged.

Leo: (Laughing) Unhinged. Unmediated was the word I was looking for but hinged will work.

Lauren: I find myself often thinking about what would happen if Twitter no longer existed. And I think this is often coming up especially given the reports of turmoil and Twitter's especially.

Leo: Well that's one of the things that happened is Alex Bain who is—

Lauren: Adam Bain.

Leo: Adam Bain who is a beloved figure at Twitter, the COO has announced his departure. Do we know? Do you know? Was he pushed out? Did he—

Alex: Oh no, definitely not pushed out.

Lauren: He left. He made a choice.

Leo: And why did he leave?

Alex: I think 6 years in that really messy company is a long time if you're leading the torch as the person who brings order to chaos.

Mike: I also think he doesn't see a glorious future. He was there for the glorious part of Twitter.

Leo: He was I think kind of touted as the next CEO. Jack Dorsey got it.

Mike: That was never going to happen.

Leo: That might have something to do with it although that was months ago.

Alex: I will say every time I had to interact with Adam Bain in any capacity, he's been exactly as nice as everyone says he is.

Mike: Yea, it's sickening.

Alex: Which to me is so insane. That means he scales niceness by hand. That's just—

Mike: I hate that.

Alex: I know. I'm not nearly good enough of a person to do that.

Leo: So I know. I'm never nice to you. So I'm wondering if he's announced—he hasn't announced what he's going to do.

Lauren: No, he's said that he's going to pursue other projects but it's not quite exactly sure how that's going to materialize.

Leo: That's the—

Alex: 3, 2, 1, venture capital.

Lauren: Yea. Probably.

Leo: Yea.

Mike: Bain Capital.

Lauren: At the same time though when you see somebody who is kind of a—

Leo: That's a good name.

Mike: Isn't that great?

Leo: Trademark it.

Alex: I've never heard of it.

Lauren: But when you see somebody who is basically their presence as an executive is part in parcel of the company or the parcel at large. I mean this is like if Sheryl Sandberg left Facebook. Everybody'd be like, "Why did she leave? What's going on?" Because she is such a well-respected and beloved executive there that people would start to panic and I think that the omens are kind of all there, right? You have the shutdown of Vine. You have the reports of sales not going through. You have Adam Bain leaving. You know there are these small signs that say like, ok, well, what's the future here?

Leo: So what if it goes out of business? What if we have no Twitter?

Alex: It's not going to go out of business. It has—

Leo: Well no but I think Lauren posted, posited an interesting hypothetical.

Alex: She's totally correct.

Leo: What would we do without Twitter? I would be happy. I would do a little happy dance.

Mike: I would be sad.

Alex: I'd go to B school and just get into banking. Sorry.

Leo: (Laughing).

Alex: No, technology and finance wouldn't be fun for me without Twitter.

Leo: Really? That bad?

Mike: I would go back to Google + and sulk.

Leo: You'd be alone.

Alex: Party of one. You beat me to my joke. You can't steal my jokes like that.

Leo: (Laughing) No, party of one is a better statement though, a better way to say it.

Alex: It took me a half second longer to get to though.

Lauren: In time you will learn.

Alex: I'm here to learn from the quasi-master.

Leo: No, no, no, no. The quasi-master?

Alex: Come on.

Leo: Quasi?

Alex: That was Doom.

Leo: All right. I don't know. I feel like flowers would bloom, the sun would come out. The clouds would lift and it would be a happy time for all of America. It would make America great again.

Alex: Oh my gosh.

Lauren: (Laughing) I wonder. I don't think that Twitter—I think that Twitter as a company has a large chance of being as the company is today.

Leo: It's never going away.

Lauren: I don't think Twitter as a technology will never go away so understanding that, I think that there's a lot of really interesting opportunities in the fact that if you divorce Twitter, the technology from Twitter, the business, what does this method of communication become? Does it still exist? And if so, how?

Leo: It became apparent really early on in Twitter that in fact we sometimes called it the dial tone of the internet, that it was in the same sense that the dial tone is the carrier that allows phone conversations possible, Twitter was a necessary feature of the internet, a real-time dial tone that people could use to converse over. So yea, maybe Twitter would open source the software. They would give it away. Maybe some benevolent company, maybe Jeff Bezos would just buy the technology and let it run. Would Twitter be better without management?

Lauren: So this is again, I think that at the crossroads of politics, this is something that we have a conversation about a lot right? Would businesses be better without regulation if there's somebody overseeing it or will it end up you know, breaking down in a way or becoming disadvantageous in a way to consumers?

Leo: You don't need to improve Twitter. Twitter is done.

Mike: Well you need to—

Lauren: Well no, there's no edit. Until there's an edit button, excuse me, until there is an edit button so I can edit my tweets—

Alex: No, no that would ruin Twitter.

Leo: That would ruin Twitter.

Alex: That would ruin Twitter.

Leo: You're stuck.

Lauren: Nope.

Leo: You're stuck. What you wrote—and you can delete a tweet, but you know what? It doesn't matter.

Lauren: I want a 4-minute window. Give me a 4-minute window to edit my tweets and then—

Leo: You know what that is? You know what that is? That's hovering your finger over the push the send button for 10 minutes.

Lauren: Sometimes I have typos.

Leo: Once its sent—no but the problem is, the minute it's sent it's appearing all over the place. And if you delete it or edit it, you can't take it back.

Lauren: I just believe that there's always an opportunity for a more perfect Twitter.

Leo: I don't think so.

Mike: It was a year ago. Twitter a year ago.

Leo: I think—in fact I think we strip out Moments. We strip out a lot of the cruyff.

Alex: Oh, cruyff.

Leo: And we just make Twitter be what it's so good at which is that stream of real-time—

Mike: Here's the irony. The reason nobody wants to buy it is they're losing too much money. And the reason they're losing too much money is they added all that crap.

Lauren: Which is why Bezos is perfect to pick.

Mike: Twitter used to run with 250 employees or something like that.

Leo: Could it? I mean really, if all you did is make sure that the servers were up, you know, that the software worked—

Mike: And keep improving and tweaking just the basic functionality, but no algorithms.

Leo: No. No. You've done enough. You've got the @reply, you've got the hashtag.

Mike: I think that'd be great.

Leo: You've got—I think take out DMs.

Alex: What?

Leo: No? All right. Leave DMs.

Alex: What am I going to slide into?

Lauren: (Laughing).

Alex: It's a Twitter joke.

Leo: Again, can you explain that?

Alex: Ad Hoc, do you want to do this one?

Leo: Is that what you say to kids? You say let's slide into DM.

Lauren: You know back in the day when you were say at the speakeasy or the old-timey saloon and you'd see a fine maiden in several petticoats—

Leo: Oh, you go you want to get out of here?

Lauren: And you see a fine maiden in several petticoats and you think, "Wow I like the cut of her jib." Instead of say, walking over and asking to buy her a drink, you slide into her DMs and say, "What are you doing?"

Leo: Wait a minute. People do that? Like you're sitting here and she's over there? First of all, how do you know—

Alex: No, no, no, Leo. Not in the same room.

Lauren: No, no, no.

Alex: This is a general concept.

Lauren: Instead of walking up and buying someone a drink—

Leo: Oh, so you're having a conversation. She has to be following you already.

Lauren: Yea.

Alex: Oh yea.

Leo: Ok. So you do kind of know.

Alex: Twitter is also the world's biggest dating app by the way, so.

Lauren: Alex has gotten like 80% of his most recent relationships off Twitter.

Alex: Well one for one, the last one. So there you go.

Leo: So anyway. So we keep @reply (laughing).

Alex: I didn't know Lauren would be like Alex's personal life. Here you go.

Leo: We don't change anything. We just take out moments. We take out that video stuff. We take out the ads. We take out—do we leave Trending Topics?

Lauren: Well I guess that depends on how many people are going to wanting them.

Mike: Take it out.

Leo: Take it out. It's toxic. Strip it down to the metal.

Mike: And also you should be able to—if somebody replies to your tweet with an @reply you should be able to delete their reply.

Leo: I agree.

Alex: What?

Mike: Yes.

Alex: No.

Mike: Every other social network allows you to do that.

Leo: It's called curating your—

Alex: But the democratization of responses is what makes Twitter fun.

Leo: No, it's what makes it such a good place for trolls.

Mike: But it's also for trolls.

Alex: I know but—

Mike: But trolls can go do their own things. They can't hijack my feed. That's all I'm saying. They can't hijack my—exactly.

Leo: Yea, exactly.

Alex: That may be good but it strikes my censorship buttons a little wrong but I'll think about it more.

Mike: Yea.

Leo: Periodically, my feed gets loaded with all sorts of crap from one person by the way because he tweets like a thousand times. And I would just like to be able to say don't put that stuff in my—

Alex: Well that's the mute button. Before we move on. What's your secret Twitter handle?

Mike: My secret Twitter handle?

Alex: Yea, what is it?

Mike: thenewnewnews.

Alex: Really?

Mike: Yea.

Alex: Ok, thanks.

Lauren: It's not such a secret anymore, man. You just blew your own cover.

Alex: That was what I was going for and it worked quite easily so it must not be a secret.

Leo: So that would be an example of you would like to not have Alex tweet thenewnewnews, right?

Alex: I can try that out. Wait, I have to dig out—thenewnewnews.

Leo: MacBook sales. We talked last week. Everybody was very upset and depressed about where Apple went with the MacBook Pro, where they're going with their Pro line. Jason Calacanis basically said it's over for Apple. And yet sales according to Phil Schiller, are already surpassing last year's MacBook. Not that that is a benchmark because the MacBook was a specialized product.

Alex: And didn't sell that well.

Leo: And didn't sell that well. So maybe that number is kind of Apple's way of saying, well, you know, we're like some smoke and mirrors. We're selling. We're selling.

Alex: It's an Amazon kind of like comparative metric. We have sold 30% more Kindles this year than last year which is always very annoying by them. But in this case Apple is generally good about telling us hard numbers.

Leo: You can't buy it yet in the stores and I think this is the week people are going to be able. This is actually where it will be telling. People who order it sight unseen are Apple fans who either—that or they've had a MacBook so long, the MacBook Pro so long like I have since 2012, whatever it is I have to have the new one. But that's a limited market. Once it's in stores and you have people trying the touch bar, you have people actually trying the new keyboard, and that's when sales will be an important indicator, how it does in stores. And that's going to happen this weekend.

Lauren: So the question is, is the novelty good or is the novelty not good.

Leo: And I don't think you know until you've used it for a while.

Lauren: No, absolutely not. I mean to put it in dorky gaming terms, it's the difference between the Wii and the Wii U. Is the novelty universal or is the novelty niche specific?

Leo: Did you get the NES Classic yet?

Lauren: Oh my gosh, I called like 4 Game Stops and none of them had it.

Mike: You broke Lauren.

Leo: It's completely sold out. So what's the—so, I have no interest. But that's because I'm an old man. The NES came out in 85, right?

Lauren: Yea.

Leo: So that's 30 years ago. So it would be people who were 5 or 6 at the time. No, but you had one. You're in your 20s. How is it that you have this affection for the NES?

Lauren: Oh. Let me explain this to you.

Alex: She's a nerd.

Lauren: Well, I am a nerd. Two, I grow up in a household where I'm 4 of 5 children. My oldest sister's 9 years older than me. Well, one of the easiest ways to make mass entertainment for small children is my dad used to pop in a NES game and we used to watch him play it. That's how—

Leo: You watched dad play?

Alex: That's awesome parenting.

Leo: Because so many people are on Twitch today.

Mike: Well done.

Lauren: Yes, and that's why—

Leo: They think they're watching their father.

Lauren: Yea.

Leo: Daddy, come home. Daddy, stop playing League of Legends and look at me.

Lauren: It's really soothing to me.

Leo: Don't call me a scrub.

Lauren: But I grew up in a gaming family and that's how it goes and I personally think the NES Classic is pretty neat for several—

Leo: Which game are you looking forward to playing the most?

Lauren: Oh, that's a good question.

Alex: Dragonquest?

Lauren: Dragonquest, that didn't make it.

Leo: Zelda?

Alex: It didn't make the cut? I'm not buying one now.

Lauren: I don't think it made it. Probably the one I'm most interested in playing for real is a little known title by the name of Star Tropics. It's actually a game that my parents own and it's actually very cool. It's kind of like a little—

Leo: Are you going to like it when you don't have to blow into the cartridge and—

Lauren: Well the reason why the NES Classic is such a boom for retro gamers is that it actually has an HDMI port built in. The issue is that when you actually do—if you run a traditional NES through, on a modern TV so not a CRT television, what ends up happening is there is a lag that develops because they're actually converting the old AV inputs into HDMI. So the way that you say play Mario, which is within fractions of a second for example, it's the difference between you hitting the Goomba and the Goomba hitting you. So a lot of people are very excited because then it gives them the opportunity to actually play on their modern televisions with the same response that they're used to.

Leo: Actually I read a review that said that this is so faithful to the original NES it actually slows down when you get a lot of players on the screen and everything.

Lauren: They didn't mess with the ROM so the ROM's going to—

Leo: Yea but they didn't give the processor too much power either.

Lauren: No. They did not.

Alex: So they brought the bad bits along with it?

Leo: Yea.

Lauren: No.

Leo: And it has 3 versions. It has a CRT version that snows—

Lauren: You can get the lines.

Leo: You can get the lines and the snow. Oh, crazy. You remember your first Goomba stomp? Who could ever forget? I don't know what this language is. This is you young people.

Alex: Can we hear Lauren say Goomba again?

Lauren: Goomba.

Alex: There we go.

Leo: Let's take a break on that note. Our show today brought to you by Wealthfront. Wealthfront is a—oh, love Wealthfront. Wealthfront is a new category. Sometimes they call them ROBO investors, right? Is that—

Alex: ROBO advisors.

Leo: Advisors. But this does such a good job. It's amazing. Now the problem that ROBO advisors solve and Wealthfront's solves the best of all the ROBO advisors is you need to be saving for long term, right? You need to have a retirement fund. You need to save for college or that house that you want to buy or just a rainy-day fund. And savings nowadays doesn't mean putting it in the bank because what is a savings account? Like a quarter of a percent or something. It's ridiculous. So you're actually losing money I think. Barely keeping up with inflation. Instead you need to invest. But you don't have time. Trust me, you think you have time, you don't have time to run your investment and if you're going to go out and get investment advisor you ought to know, traditional advisors charge between 1, 2 or 3% of what they manage. And you know one of the things that they're talking about deregulating is this rule that requires an investment advisor not to have a stake in the stocks he's telling you to buy. That's going to get turned around in which case—now, not only are they charging you 1, 2 or 3% of what they manage, you can't even trust their advice. So Wealthfront. This has fixed it all. First of all, one quarter of one percent a year. That's 25 basis points with no additional charges. No transaction fees, no hidden fees and it's a computer so it has no biases. It's actually, it's doing what it can to maximize your return, minimize your taxes. It does something called tax loss harvesting. You know you want to test a financial advisor? Ask him, "Are you doing tax loss harvesting?" How often are you checking my balance in my portfolio? Weekly? Monthly? Quarterly? Yearly? With Wealthfront it's every second because it's a computer. The system is based on Nobel Prize winning academic research of the best investment practices, the best investment advisors, people like Burton Makiel, Charles D. Ellis, these guys wrote the books literally on how to make money on Wall Street. And they have figured it out. I talked to so many people now who use Wealthfront because of these ads and who say, "It has been great for me." They just introduced their 529 college savings plan. It's kind of like a Roth IRA for college. $3-billion-dollars in assets and growing fast because it works. But I don't want you to trust me. I want you to go to Look at it. Take a look at the returns, their historic returns. See how it works. It will even generate a sample portfolio for you for free with just a few questions based on your timeframe and your risk tolerance, that kind of thing. And you get that for free. You can just take that with you, see what allocation they recommend. And if you sign up to invest, I love this, a little sweetener, they're going to manage your first $15-thousand-dollars free of charge forever. But you have to go to Take a little of that money you set aside for your NES Classic. Put it in Wealthfront. You can start with as little as $500 bucks.

Leo: We had a great week on TWiT. We had a lot to talk about and our PlayStation Pro review. I mean—well you know what? Here's a convenient thing. We happen to have a little trailer that describes it all. Watch.

Narrator: Previously on TWiT.

Leo: Many elections were watershed moments if you have historical details. The tales may not be as historic as we'd wanted this.

Mike: This, Leo, is our first orange president. He's breaking the color barrier.

Narrator: Tech News Today.

Megan Morrone: You may or may not feel let down by last night's election but one thing that I think we can agree on is the data geeks let us down. VoteCastr's mission was to gather, publish and analyze voter turnout information in swing states even though they had so called data gurus, they got almost all of their predictions wrong.

Narrator: This Week in Google.

Jeff Jarvis: We in liberally established media left a void and a vacuum. We didn't listen to and understand the concerns and the world view of that half of the country. And as a result, that half of the country said, "You never reflect us. Why should we trust you? We don't trust you. You don't understand us." It's our fault. We left that there because we didn't respect that half of the country.

Narrator: TWiT. Friends don't let friends miss TWiT.

Alex: I'm going to go back on my carbs like everyone else. I don't know.

Leo: There's carbs in Red Bull.

Alex: That's why I don't drink it very often.

Leo: Oh, ok. He's on his 3rd Red Bull, ladies and gentlemen.

Alex: I had one point zero.

Leo: Lauren has apparently 3 quarts of diet something.

Lauren: Yea. It's in my blood.

Leo: I love the picture. Did you see the picture that—Mike O'Donnell is here. This guy is Silicon Valley staff photographer. He's great. He's already posted a picture of Lauren. Let me see if I can find it here. You haven't seen it yet, have you?

Alex: It's actually pretty funny.

Leo: He's @photo on Twitter and let me just really quickly.

Alex: He's also one of the nicest guys in Silicon Valley.

Leo: Here's the picture of Lauren Hockenson. Dear fries, you make me happy.

Alex: For those of you that don't—for people that weren't here in the studio, we had a group trip to Burger King before we shot to get fries.

Leo: That's another thing that's wrong with your generation. Really? Burger King for fries? Burger King?

Alex: Ok, I didn't actually have fries.

Lauren: Listen, when your options are limited and you can only walk one place.

Leo: Oh, you had to walk somewhere.

Alex: Yea, we got here and then we walked over.

Leo: I think I had some pancake fries you should try.

Alex: Don't tempt me.

Lauren: What is this technology? Can you please explain to me.

Leo: We've got a big week ahead. Let's find out. Jason Howell has the latest.

Jason Howell: Hey, thanks, Leo. Here's a look at a few things that we're going to be watching in the week ahead. On Tuesday, November 15th, Chinese smartphone maker OnePlus is likely to announce a new device, possibly named the OnePlus 3T. It's housing a top of the line Snapdragon A21 processor and an optic AMOLED display. Also on the 15th, drone market leader DJI is holding an event where it's expected to show off its next gen inspired drone. That's the company's premium drone line that's targeted at Hollywood creators for aerial photography and dual controller capabilities. MacBook Pro with Touch Bar was scheduled to begin shipping to those who preordered the laptop on Thursday, November 17, though some early shipping notices began to hit inboxes on Friday. Regardless, we'll begin to see these in the wild any day now. And finally, starting Friday, November 18th and lasting through the weekend, Blizzard is making its huge hit game Overwatch free to play on all platforms. So if you haven't been bitten by the Overwatch bug yet, might as well sacrifice your weekend and realize what you've been missing. Megan Marrone and I will cover all of this and a whole lot more all week on Tech News Today each and every weekday at 4:00 PM Pacific. That's a look at the week ahead. Back to you, Leo.

Leo: Thank you very much, Jason Howell. Monday through Friday. Of course Jason also does All About Android and covers the latest phones. I saw yesterday the new Echo. By the way, that is the worst name for a company. They're Chinese. Are they pretending to be French? Le Echo.

Alex: Oh those guys. Yea, yea, yea.

Mike: It's Chinese. Le Echo.

Leo: But they have a beautiful new phone. $300 bucks and it's top of the line features all around. I really think that Apple and Google are going to face some stiff competition because they're pricing their phones at $700, $800, $900 bucks.

Alex: Apple's ASPs don't hold up at that sales rate. So if they sold phones at that level, they would see revenue declines and profit declines.

Leo: Financial analyst, ladies and gentlemen. That's Alex Wilhelm. He's from Mattermark. You can read his brilliant posts there. He's the editor-in-chief at @alex on the Twitter.

Alex: True.

Leo: Also here, she's on her own now but we love her anyway, Lauren Hockenson, the queen of the bow. How many bows do you have, Lauren?

Mike: Take another bow, Lauren.

Leo: Take a bow.

Lauren: The bow puns are funny because I call my bow collection my rainbow.

Leo: Aww.

Lauren: Because I have them in all colors.

Leo: Do you have a special wall in your closet just for bows?

Lauren: No, not in my closet, but on a shelf, yes.

Leo: I think it's a great trademark.

Lauren: Thank you. It's a part of my brand.

Leo:  Yea. I love that. I wear socks with gold toes but nobody sees it so no one knows (laughing). Actually, Peter O'Toole's very famous for everyday of his life wearing green socks. And he never wore the same pair twice. He had a fresh pair of green socks every day.

Mike: Oh, come on.

Leo: No, I'm not kidding. And again—go ahead. Snope it. Is that a verb now? Snope it?

Mike: It's gotta be.

Leo: And again, the thing about the bow is people see it. The problem with the green socks, nobody ever saw it.

Mike: Yea.

Alex: Do actually wear Gold Toe Socks?

Leo: I don't know. We can check.

Alex: Let's find out.

Leo: No, they just—why do my socks say Carhart?

Mike: See how great fact checking, see how great fact checking is?

Alex: You dressed yourself?

Leo: No. I have a valet. I have a valet.

Alex: Downton Laporte.

Leo: Downton Laporte. Here comes my, I call him my bantam.

Alex: You should fire him immediately.

Leo: I know. They tell me this jacket looks frumpy. Would you agree?

Alex: No, I think it looks fresh.

Leo: It is. It's fresh out of the box. It's a LL Bean jacket so it has zippers everywhere. It's a travel jacket.

Lauren: Prepping for that meeting with the Explorer's Club are we?

Leo: I have a pith helmet in the back.

Alex: The league of ordinary gentlemen.

Leo: Oh, you are really cruising.

Alex: Hey, I'm sorry. Hey, for the record, I—

Leo: That was good though. That was a good one.

Lauren: He's also had 7 million red bulls.

Leo: I know. It makes your brain, the synapses are firing.

Alex: I've had one Red Bull. What the hell is wrong with you?

Leo: So wait. Wait a minute. You said something and I feel like there was a deeper meaning to what you said earlier.

Lauren: What?

Leo: I forgot now.

Alex: Contact. Movie. Teens.

Leo: Oh, we were talking about—

Alex: Arrival.

Leo: During the break, we were talking about, you saw a movie last night.

Mike: I saw Arrival.

Leo: That's Amy McAdams' new movie about the arrival of aliens.

Mike: Exactly.

Leo: And I've been dying to see this. The trailer looked fantastic. You said it was good.

Mike: I don't want to ruin it because high expectations can ruin.

Leo: No, don't.

Mike: I'm not going to spoil anything.

Leo: Ok.

Mike: But I don't want to raise expectations and ruin it that way but it is fantastic. Fantastic.

Leo: Really?

Mike: It's like literally the best alien movie I've ever seen. Really, really good.

Leo: I can't wait.

Lauren: Better than Alien with—it's my best alien movie.

Leo: That's not an alien movie. That's a horror movie in an alien movie guise.

Lauren: That's not true.

Alex: It's Sci-Fi slash horror.

Lauren: Yea.

Leo: Ok, Sci-Fi slash horror.

Alex: No, no I'm with you on this.

Leo: There's aliens in it. It's called Alien.

Alex: But it's scary as heck.

Leo: But it's not—I like first contact movies. You know, like Close Encounters. Do-do-do-do-do. Or Contact. And what came up was, I noticed for some reason on my iTunes chart, that Contact, the movie, what is it, 20, 30-years old move with Matthew McConaughey and Debbie Gibson. No, Jody Foster.

Mike: Jody Foster. We saw that on TV.

Leo: We watched her grow up. Just like Debbie Gibson.

Alex: I don' t know who Debbie Gibson is.

Leo: You don't know what I'm talking about. You don't remember Debbie Gibson?

Mike: He has not made contact with Debbie Gibson.

Lauren: Oh, no.

Leo: Anyway, that movie is in the top 10. It's an old movie. Why is it in the top 10 and you, Lauren Hockenson know, but you refuse to reveal.

Mike: I love the Millennials because that is a great movie. That is a great, great movie and the Millennials will recognize it.

Lauren: I gave my explanation which is that Contact is seeing a resurgence with the teens.

Leo: Why?

Lauren: It's popular on Tumblr.

Mike: Why?

Alex: Why is it popular on Tumblr?

Mike: Because it's a great movie.

Leo: Is it a meme?

Lauren: I don't know why the kids—

Mike: I have to say this to everybody that's listening and watching this show which is that see Arrival as fast as you can because somebody could easily spoil it for you. It's a movie full of surprises so go see it before somebody wrecks it.

Alex: I'm going to ask this very delicately. But there was a recent legalization of a certain thing in California. Would that said thing perhaps increase your enjoyment of the show or would one like to go perhaps more flat in the mental department?

Mike: Flat because I wouldn't—

Leo: It's like The Matrix. If you had been high—

Alex: Oh, we can say high on the show?

Leo: You can say stoned.

Alex: Oh. Oh.

Leo: If you had been—

Alex: I prefer wacked.

Leo: Gassed, wacked, out of your brain.

Alex: Addled.

Leo: Addled at The Matrix you probably would have missed the import of it all. You would have come out and gone, as Keanu Reeves did, "Whoa."

Alex: Dude.

Leo: But, but, seeing it straight was even more mind blowing if you get my--

Mike: Yea, you need all your faculties to get this movie. Half the people walked out of the theatre going, "What happened? What just happened?"

Leo: I'll never forget seeing The Matrix without—and this is why you want to see it soon because you don't want it to—I had no idea what I was going to see. It was like an afternoon matinee and I hadn't read anything. I had no idea.

Mike: When Morpheus told him what's going on, you were just like Keanu Reeves, like stumbling.

Leo: And I walked out going, "Blue pill? Red pill? I want the red pill. Give me the red pill." I had—my eyes were like this going out of the theatre because I was thinking, thinking, thinking. So it's like that.

Mike: Yea, I saw it in Paris and it was like it didn't even—

Leo: Wait a minute. You were in Paris yesterday?

Mike: No, no. I saw The Matrix there.

Leo: Oh, the Matrix.

Mike: Back when it first came out.

Alex: That's still a pretty good brag.

Leo: (Laughing).

Alex: Where did you see The Matrix? Oh, I was in Antarctica. No big deal, you know.

Mike: Yea, we saw it twice. We went back the next day.

Leo: Was it in French?

Mike: We saw it once with subtitles and once dubbed.

Leo: That would be weird.

Mike: It was better with subtitles.

Leo: Whoa (laughing).

Alex: The pills are so red.

Leo: Oh, the pills, they are so red.

Alex: How would you say sentinel in French?

Leo: Sentinel.

Alex: That's not quite as scary.

Leo: Sentinel. Ah.

Alex: Anyways.

Mike: See Arrival.

Leo: Morpheus. Je suis Morpheus.

Mike: What a show this is.

Alex: Are you still talking to me? I was totally ignoring you. Sorry.

Leo: Je m'appelle Neo. No, pardon moi, Neo. All right. Our show today—

Alex: I speak teen.

Leo: I'm going to do another ad because I feel like a nap and when I think nap do you know what I think of? My Casper mattress that's waiting for me at home. Very comfortable. Very—this is a great, great mattress. This is a mattress, this mattress is unbelievable. And mine is actually huge because I have the—

Alex: Huge?

Leo: Huge. I have the king, the California king. But you can get it in twin, you can get it in king, you can get it in queen, you can get it in California king and at a much more affordable price. Now I know what you're saying. You're saying, "Leo, I'm not going to buy a mattress without lying on it." But really, let me as you something. The last time you laid on a mattress in a mattress store, was that a satisfying experience? Did you really get a sense of what that mattress is going to be like when you get it home? No. Because it's broad daylight. You've got your shoes on and the salesperson's looking at you like—and that's no fun. Not for anyone. So when the Casper mattress comes, see, you know you don't have one night or two nights or even ten nights. You've got 100 nights to lie on it, do whatever moves you, whatever you need to test it. I, personally, jumped up and down. And then I invited my close, personal friend, Ozzie the dog, to lie on it with me. And when Ozzie—we have video.

Mike: Is Ozzie heavy enough to actually—

Leo: He's 7 pounds. He didn't even put a scratch on it. But no. But he did like it because it has just the right sink, just the right bounce. It's firm because it's got the memory foam but it's also has the latex on top of it that just gives you a little—so your hips. You know, sometimes your hips, like you feel like you're floating. No, they go in but then they find respite. It's the 2016 Business Intelligence Group Innovation Award winner. One of the best mattresses you'll ever--- it's the best. Not one of the, but the best I've ever slept on. Sleeps cool so it is never too hot, never sweaty. Look at that pineapple loving it. Loving it on the Casper mattress. We're looking at it on the website, If you go there right now you'll get $50-dollars off your mattress purchase. It's already very affordable because you're buying direct from the factory. It's made in the USA. They ship to the US, free shipping and returns I should mention to the US and Canada. Oh, I didn't mention how the return works. So in the first 100 days if at any point you say, "Yea, no." You call them. They come and get it. A courier literally comes and drags it out of your house.

Mike: Do you have to shove it back in the box?

Leo: They donate it. No, you do not. It does, by the way, come in a very compact box, opens right up. But no, the courier comes and hefts it out there. And I think they donate it to a local charity.

Mike: They take it on, it's their problem. It's not your problem.

Leo: It's not any—the point is you get all your money back. It costs you nothing. I just love it. $50-dollars off. Some terms and conditions apply so go to the website and use the promo code TWIT for that $50-dollar deal. All right. It's the ghost in the mattress shell somebody says.

Lauren: They were just discussing the trailer for Ghost in the Shell.

Mike: Which is mind-blowing.

Leo: Scarlett Johansson is a robot apparently.

Mike: Again.

Leo: Can we watch that because I—so, Ghost in the Shell is a manga.

Lauren: So it originally started as a Sci-Fi manga series that was then created into an anime that has had, I want to say 2 separate movies attached to it.

Scarlett Johansson: Hey, this is Scarlett Johansson.

Leo: Oh, shut up, Scarlett. I'm listening to Lauren. Is this the trailer? She just talks?

Mike: It follows what she says. Here's the trailer.

Lauren: The whole concept behind Ghost in the Shell is actually, it might be a little #tooreal for some people if you're not necessarily hyped up on—

Leo: Because it was animated.

Lauren: It was. And you can watch the anime. I believe it's available on Crunchyroll.

Leo: You're going to love it. You're going to love it. It's like a classic.

Lauren: Yes. It's actually a progenitor or forerunner to The Matrix. The Wachowski  siblings actually were fans of Ghost in the Shell and they've incorporated a lot of the dystopian elements that you see in Ghost in the Shell.

Leo: Oh, I might have to see this.

Lauren: It's actually—the Japanese name actually is a little bit closer to—Ghost in the Shell is the subtitle but the Japanese loosely translates to I believe something like Riot Police.

Leo: Is she a robot geisha?

Lauren: So she is, she plays—oh my gosh. She plays a person who is involved in a, basically a counter terrorism unit. She suffered a significant accident as a child so now—

Leo: So she's kind of like the bionic man.

Mike: Like Robocop.

Lauren: Kind of like Robocop. I would, if you have not seen it, I would absolutely suggest like, free trial Crunchyroll. Like please go watch it. It's one of the classic, it's one of the classic animes. But if you're really into anything that's related to, I mean anything that's related to Dystopian Sci-Fi, you know—

Leo: It's got a little Blade Runner feel to it.

Lauren: It's going to feel also, again, a little bit too real. You have post World War III nuclear war that has happened. American has fallen and split into several different factions.

Leo: So, do you think because of the current political situation, this will hurt that movie? Don't we want to see like upbeat, uplifting like Arrival instead of this?

Lauren: I don't think so. Specifically because Ghost in the Shell has an incredible, incredible following. And again, like I said, it's been such a pivotal piece of inspiration for Science Fiction. Like it's kind of again, it's like Blade Runner but—

Leo: I can't wait.

Lauren: More fad.

Leo: There's not a lot of car chases though, right?

Mike: A few.

Leo: I'm not a big fan of car chases. Well, you haven't seen the movie. But you saw the cartoon.

Lauren: Yes.

Leo: The animated version, right?

Lauren: Yes.

Leo: We don't normally do movie reviews but we've just done two.

Alex: Lauren brings her own stuff to the show. She has a really deep cultural appreciation for things that are outside of our orbit.

Leo: I think geeks are interested in this.

Alex: No, no, but geekdom is quite diverse.

Leo: It is. In fact we tried on the network to do a lot of kind of geek culture shows and never really got any traction. I think people want harder core tech coverage from us and less like, you know.

Alex: It's just hard to find one that you can talk about once a week that has enough content and enough fans to be sustainable.

Leo: Yea, that's a good point. It's very, very narrow cast.

Alex: Yea, like if we were on the show every week and we talked about finance, we'd have 3 viewers in 3 weeks, you know?

Mike: Whereas if you talk about iPhone versus Android you're covering 100% of your audiences.

Leo: One of the other.

Alex: The chatroom loses its mind. Everyone has a good time.

Leo: Daydream is out. Daydream View. It looks like a fuzzy, lymph based Gear VR. And it works with right now only the Google Pixel phones but it's supposedly going to work with other Android devices once manufacturers get their acts together. Look at that. That's it. Steven Hall, 9to5google saying very comfortable because—and also that, you know one of the problems I have with VR in general is you sweat. And apparently this not only absorbs your sweat but can be removed to be laundered.

Alex: That's huge because it if absorbs my sweat, I want to get it out.

Leo: Yea, get it out especially if you're sharing it.

Lauren: Am I the only person that's actually tested the Daydream here?

Leo: Are you? Tell us.

Lauren: Yea. So it's actually pretty interesting. It feels kind of weird like holding—

Leo: It's light though, right? It's lighter than the Gear VR or the VIVE or the—

Lauren: Yea, oh, absolutely. And someone actually asked me to describe the fabric that is surrounding it and I said stretch fabric. It's a stretch fabric. It kind of feels—

Leo: It is. It's a sports fabric. It's the same fabric they use for sports.

Lauren: It also feels a little bit neoprene-y and that's how it kind of feels to me is it feels a little bit like neoprene which again makes a lot of sense. But putting it on, I mean I sort of—it's easy to adjust versus the Oculus and the VIVE which has several straps.

Leo: It has straps and yea.

Lauren: And you've got to like do some calculations, measure your own head.

Leo: Does it have audio though?

Lauren: It does not. So that's a piece of it you'll have to connect headphones into the phone. I used what many people are calling the killer app which is YouTube VR. And I will say, YouTube VR, super neat. It obviously takes advantage of 360 degree videos. But also you're allowed to watch anything in YouTube's current library done on like that fake living room set up, which is also really neat.

Leo: Really? You would do that? You would watch flat 2D video in that thing? Why? Because it's more immersive?

Laruen: Well I still own a television so it's not necessarily I would say a game changer for someone like me but if you're on an airplane for example and you want to watch something and you have Wi-Fi, that's something you can do. The one downside that I will say that I found a little bit difficult is that the phone heats up like the Dickens.

Leo: Yes, all of them do this by the way.

Lauren: I've used the Gear VR though and I think part of it has to do with the fact that it is a hard plastic interface that allows for an open back. And I don't know if it's because it has that fabric.

Leo: My Galaxy S7 has actually shut down during a VR experience because it gets so hot.

Lauren: Yes. And so after a while you will get the heat warnings and you will—you can touch it and it does feel hot. I wouldn't say like it's burning oven hot, but maybe like a still warm dish hot that can feel a little bit uncomfortable.

Alex: Like a hot cooked pudding if you will?

Leo: It's somewhere between crème brulee and Ruth's Chris Steak House.

Alex: Do you crack the top of the crème brulee, or do you just go into it like a savage?

Mike: Now I'm hungry. Thanks a lot, people.

Alex: Sorry.

Leo: I just eat the sugar and leave the crème.

Mike: I love you, Lauren.

Alex: You are a horrible, horrible person.

Leo: I know. That is more savage than you can imagine.

Alex: Do you lick the frosting out of the cookie and put it back in the thing?

Mike: We're trying to have a civilization here, Leo. Come on.

Leo: (Laughing). Anyway, you liked it. $79-dollars so it's more expensive than Cardboard but it's less expensive than any other solution.

Lauren: I think it fits. I think it fits really nice. I think it's really easy and accessible. The one gripe that I always have is I don't necessarily think it is small face friendly. You know, if you've got kids or if you've got you know, people with small faces they might feel like it's still a little bit too big and the optical space is a little bit too big. That's what I find to be my biggest difficulty and being able to see underneath, like through the nose. Like I have that problem.

Leo: Right.

Lauren: But that could also probably be a fit thing. It's like a good, first crack. If you're really interested in getting into VR but you don't necessarily want to upgrade your rig or you are not a PlayStation 4 owner, it's definitely the way to go if you want to see something that is more accessible, less resource driven and also it's got some cool stuff.

Leo: And you probably used it with a Pixel XL, the bigger phone.

Lauren: No I used it with the OG.

Leo: Because I have the little Pixel.

Lauren: Looked great.

Leo: Ok. That was—because this is 1080p. That was my concern, this might be a little—

Lauren: Yea, it looks real nice. And there was, I didn't feel like there was an absence of that immersive feeling with the smaller phone.

Leo: Any stomach upset, nausea?

Lauren: No. But I did—

Leo: Do you get it anyway?

Lauren: I have.

Leo: Ok.

Lauren: One time I got a little bit over zealous playing Minecraft and had to sit outside on the curb.

Leo: Oh, me too. Me too. That was really easy to get sick on the Minecraft. I don't know why.

Alex: Is it the flying changing perspectives?

Leo: You're looking up a lot.

Lauren: It's the controller. It's the controller feel. It's hard to describe. It's like a disconnect from the way that you want to move and also for me I find that having to turn my whole body to look at something makes me nauseous.

Leo: Real quickly, yea.

Lauren: I will say that I think that it's probably because of the resource barrier in having a phone based VR system makes it so that those high motion games really aren't a factor. So you won't have as many opportunities to puke your guts out. But I think that if you're a media consumer and you really want something that's going to kind of show off VR but like in a friendly like hey mom, try this on Thanksgiving kind of way and not a like I want to be in the world of Minecraft kind of way, then that is definitely the way to go and it's definitely more of a crowd pleaser than Cardboard.

Alex: And it's only $80 bucks?

Leo: Yea.

Lauren: Yea.

Alex: So it's kind of like dip your half foot, not toe in the water of VR. I like that.

Lauren: Yes, yea.

Leo: It's better than the ones that comes from Kellogg's for free on the box but not as good probably as the Oculus or the VIVE.

Lauren: No, no. Nowhere near.

Leo: Yea.

Alex: Ok.

Lauren: Or the PlayStation VR for that matter which his—

Leo: Have you used the PlayStation VR?

Lauren: I have used the PlayStation VR. I actually had an opportunity to demo it at PlayStation's campus, oh my gosh, back when it was still in development.

Leo:  Yea, they were in here showing it. I got to play. I was very impressed.

Lauren: It's—I think that if you own a PlayStation 4, that's the logical progression and if you are interested in VR, then that's really the way to go. You don't have to worry about buying a new phone and having it hit the resource ceiling. You don't have to worry about upgrading your PC or building your own PC or having like these 70,000 USB ports that you need for the HTC VIVE. It plugs already in. It's not perfect. I would say that like in terms of the fidelity to the VR experience, what people love about the VIVE and the Oculus, you're not going to get like 100% all cylinders firing on a PlayStation 4 but if you—just because of processing power. But if you already own a PlayStation 4 and you're thinking about VR, like that's my recommendation.

Leo: It's interesting. Ben Popper at The Verge and 9to5google both agreed with you that YouTube VR is the killer app for Daydream.

Lauren: Yes.

Leo: Stephen Hall writing for 9to5google.

Lauren: It's a hoot. It's a good time.

Alex: Why is it a hoot?

Leo: There's so much content, right, for one thing.

Lauren: You can—it's basically it is a—

Leo: I even have 365 degree videos on YouTube.

Lauren: If it's in HD you can watch it. It doesn't need to be VR. And so, like I said, if you are somebody who doesn't really own like a huge monitor, if you're a laptop only kind of person, or if you want to have greater entertainment immersive value while traveling, it's really great. I personally think that it was a lot more fun and a lot more useful than some of the in-app, like the media apps that I've seen. I don't know. Something about the way YouTube has created it's VR app, it feels very natural and also allegiant to the YouTube experience. It feels like you're just in a bigger YouTube. You're in YouTube the room.

Alex: Five word choice points for allegiant in that case. That was excellent.

Mike: Well done. Well done.

Alex: As a word dork I appreciated that one.

Lauren: I've got two college degrees.

Leo: Wow.

Alex: How's that working out for you?

Leo: That's an over achiever.

Lauren: Pretty good actually.

Leo: Pretty good. Pretty good.

Alex: For the record, whenever Lauren and I fight we're actually really good friends. Just a heads up.

Leo: When you and I fight—

Alex: Definitely not friends.

Leo: It's because we deeply hate each other.

Lauren: Bad blood.

Alex: That's why we're put next to each other every time.

Leo: Shall we do, I'll do—we're going to save the dessert for last.

Alex: The emoticons?

Leo: Yea, we won't eat the sugar off the top quite yet. I did, there were a couple of more stories I want to mention. This week in cyber, DDoS attack halts heating in Finland.

Alex: Oh my gosh.

Leo: We're in the middle of winter. It's getting pretty cold in Finland. Maybe this is not the best time. This is from, news from Finland in English. And apparently the site has been DDOSed because—there we go. They can't load it.

Alex: It's 27 degrees Fahrenheit right now in Helsinki.

Leo: Oh, it's not that cold.

Alex: That's still below freezing.

Leo: Yea. Disabled computers that were heating buildings in two properties in the city of, and I shouldn't speak Finnish.

Alex: No, go for it. Please.

Leo: Lappeenranta.

Alex: That was excellent.

Leo: Lappeenranta. Both the buildings managed by the same company and apparently the systems controlled the central heating and water circulation, disabled by DDoS attacks. Really, I could do a whole thing on This Week on DDoS attacks. There's a new attack that reportedly lets one laptop. It's called, you'll like the name, BlackNurse. I didn't name it. It lets one laptop knock off big servers using ICMP, a special kind of ICMP target attack. You don't—normally you'd need hundreds of gigabytes, in fact in some cases terabytes, or terabits I should say. The site, the attack that took DynDNS off line and the Krebs website offline was a terabit per second or more. But this one is very effective in merely 15 megabits to target the firewall. And then firewalls then drop so many packets. It's apparently a problem in Cisco firewalls, dropped so many packets that the server behind the device just disappears. So one laptop can bring you down. Nice, nice. There is some good news. Russian banks hit by cyberattack. The cyber—we don't know though if it's a Russian attacker, right? The state-owned, ironically Sberbank, I think they name is spelled cyber, Sberbank brought down also by a DDoS attack. Kaspersky says it one of the largest it has seen aimed at Russian banks.

Alex: Kaspersky does a very good job of always getting their name in security stories.

Leo: I know. They're good.

Alex: They have very effective PR.

Leo: They're good.

Mike: So this Adult Friend Finder.

Leo: That's the next one. The big one.

Mike: Yea.

Leo: Probably bothering a few people right now. Friend Finder network owns a lot of adult sites.

Mike: In-house strip shows, iCams, not that I'm an expert.

Leo: You seem to know a lot.

Alex: You read those right off.

Mike: I have encyclopedia knowledge of it. Trust me.

Leo: 412 million accounts, email addresses and passwords. But as far as reports go, no sexual preferences were released.

Mike: What's interesting about this is everybody remembers the Ashely Madison hack. That was only 32 million accounts. This is 412 million accounts.

Leo: And worse, according to Leaked Source, the Friend Finder Network had stored their passwords in plain text or using SHA-1 which is easily broken. ZDNet obtained a portion of the database and not only confirmed legitimacy but was able to crack almost all the passwords with simple rainbow tables and so forth.

Lauren Here's hoping that all of those users had their trash tertiary Yahoo accounts associated with Adult Friend Finder.

Alex: Although it's ironic to me to bring up Yahoo accounts in the is context.

Leo: You did get the most recent access time and dates so don't try to deny it, gentlemen if you—

Mike: Here's the worst part. The hack also revealed that 15 million accounts that users had deleted were also released. So, people, if you deleted your Friend Finder account, it's still out there.

Leo: You thought, maybe I'll try it once, just to see what happens. Too late.

Mike: Now you're going to find out what happens.

Leo: Yep.

Lauren: Never date.

Alex: Never date.

Leo: Never date.

Alex: Wait, really?

Leo: No.

Alex: Ok.

Leo: No, if you don't date, how are you going to reproduce? Never date. Never date.

Lauren: Not on Adult Friend Finder.

Leo: I'm sorry.

Alex: (Laughing) you set that up for yourself.

Leo: Never date.

Alex: Bing.

Leo: (Laughing) Let's talk about emojis when we—oh, before we do. Snapchat.

Alex: Oh, you've got to do this.

Leo: Did any of you get to the vending machine today? I want the Spectacles.

Mike: It's in Big Sur now.

Leo: Yea, it was like in the middle of nowhere.

Alex: And there was still a line.

Leo: And there was a long line.

Alex: False scarcity works as a marketing technique.

Leo: So they don't have many of these Spectacles and where they're selling them I guess is they're doing kind of popup vending machines which they announced shortly before it becomes available so people—where do they watch? Do you watch on Snapchat? Obviously, right?

Alex: Yea, it shoots this kind of like circular video in a square, you can only see the circle. And I saw some footage from one the other day. It was just not that cool frankly.

Leo: Oh, really?

Alex: No.

Leo: So we don't have to get excited about this? I want, I want a pair so bad.

Mike: Well, ok, here's a question.

Lauren: Oh, go ahead.

Mike: Go ahead. I insist.

Lauren: Oh, I was just going to say, I want to see the photo quality on it. Like if, to me the only thing I'd be interested in is if it shoots photos or videos at like a much better quality than the phone and then not only do you get the sort of day in the life look, but then you actually have a reason to use it. Because otherwise, pull out your phone. Take a selfie.

Mike: What I want to know is why was Google Glass such a catastrophe of privacy violations where the Snap glasses are ok.

Leo: Isn't if funny?

Alex: There's a big difference between what the Spectacles can do and what Glass can do in terms of recording length, audio quality, where it's saved to.

Leo: And it's obvious that you're—I don't know.

Mike: And on Google Glass it was always obvious.

Alex: There was a little light. And these light up here instead. But they're so incredibly dorky, people aren't going to wear them all the time any ways, so.

Lauren: I would also say that we're not going to get to that argument until they have a mainstream distribution at the capacity that Google Glass has. The more people that you see with them, and if they do become an everyday wearable.

Mike: Which they won't. No way.

Lauren: Yea.

Alex: They're only supposed to sell a few thousand this year.

Leo: They're only $130 bucks. That's another difference.

Alex: Well for now.

Leo: A tenth of the cost.

Mike: They're only appealing because they're, it's a fad, it's new, they're hard to get. As soon as they're just generally available, nobody's going to care. It's going to be really dumb.

Leo: Yea, this was the most recent one this morning. You had to hike through a state park to get to the vending machine.

Lauren: And they look like Party City sunglasses.

Alex: Party City?

Lauren: Yea. Like—

Alex: What's that?

Lauren: The party supply store.

Alex: Oh, thank you.

Leo: They're cheap.

Lauren: Yea, they look like just plastic glasses.

Leo: Cheap plastic glasses.

Mike: New Year's Eve glasses or something.

Alex: Oh, now I get it.

Leo: They're so smart to manage the scarcity like this because if you do have a pair, all your friends will go, "Oh, you have the Spectacles."

Alex: It's like the rose gold iPhone. Like oh my gosh, they sold out. All 7 of them.

Lauren: Or the NES Classic.

Leo: I had heard that they were going to offer them to heavy influencers on Snapchat first. But this vending machine thing is even better because if you hear, oh, you've got to be an influencer on Snapchat, I'm going to go, well, never mind. But I might be able to get to a vending machine. It was in Santa Monica, Loma Vista, now Big Sur.

Alex: I think it's incredibly intelligent marketing tool, but I'm not sure how good it is for a revenue driving tool. And that's what Snapchat needs Spectacles to be, a revenue positive, gross margin positive device. They need more revenue. They need to grow more quickly. And so, so far I don't see out of this what I was hoping to see as a dork. Also I have no cool for Snapchat.

Leo: Do you use Snapchat?

Alex: No.

Leo: Really?

Alex: No.

Leo: Well no wonder you're not interested.

Alex: No, I said I'm not cool enough to use Snapchat.

Leo: Lauren, you use Snapchat.

Lauren: I use Snapchat occasionally. I'm—

Leo: Who uses it? Younger people that's using it?

Lauren: I find that people in our demographic and all the way down through, I would say like there are people who have a lot of value in Snapchat. I'm personally, I just don't find it to be like a great—I'm not very creative in the way that I would think I would need to be.

Leo: It's too much work for me for something that's going to disappear in 24 hours.

Mike: Right. Exactly.

Leo: It's so much work.

Lauren: This is why my Instagram is kind of anemic. Sorry.

Alex: Also I look horrible in selfies so like I'm like my face doesn't work with someone who uses the product I feel. I don't know. It doesn't really come out.

Leo: Did you see the first episode of Season 3 of Black Marionette?

Alex: I heard it's really good.

Leo: It's all about basically this. Everybody lives on their cell phone. Of course at first it says this isn't science fiction. Everybody's walking around with their cell phone. But you rate everybody. Everybody, constantly, right? And if your rating drops below 4, like you can't get things. Like they won't let you rent a car. No, no, you're under 4.1, you're going to have to use that line.

Lauren: So what if Tinder but for oppression.

Leo: Yea. And it's very oppressive. It's a great episode if you haven't seen it.

Alex: Our soon to be president's a big fan of the 1 through 10 rating system. Perhaps that was a preamble.

Leo: You're a 10 in my book.

Alex: Out of a hundred?

Leo: Out of a hundred. That's very good. I didn't even have to make up a joke.

Alex: Got your back.

Leo: Our show today brought to you by—I'm so excited. Squarespace. My is a Squarespace site. Made it very easy literally a checkbox to do HTTPS now on  your website. They're using Let's Encrypt. But you don't even need to know the back hand of that. You're getting TLS secure encryption automatically if you have a Squarespace site. Just one more reason to use Squarespace. Squarespace is the best hosing. They're a host. Plus the best software. They make it easy, super easy for you to create a gorgeous website that is your esthetic, your thing, whether you're a business, an individual, a journalist, an artist. It's great for portfolios. If you're an online store it's never been easier to sell online. Mobile's built in. Every site is mobile responsive. It means you don't have multiple sites. You have one site that looks great no matter what size screen. And actually if you go and set up a trial site which is free, you'll see because all you do is take your browser, squeeze it down, you'll see how every page just kind of automatically resizes. When you upload a picture it generates I think 9 different sizes of that image so that you're always—you always have the option to you know to work great—there, like that. See how good it looks? Every template. Every template comes with commerce. The new Squarespace Commerce app which you run on your smartphone lets you fulfill orders, manage product inventory, yes, manage product inventory on a Squarespace site without an additional ad on. That's part of the deal. You can resolve customer issues directly from iOS or Android. Plus with Squarespace Commerce, it's the only platform that lets you create, manage and brand your store in a beautiful way. Doesn't look like something hanging off the side of your website. It looks exactly like your website. It's integrated right in there. They have a basic e-commerce plan, an advanced plan with features for your growing business and they handle the payments infrastructure so you can accept payments right away. You don't have to go hat in hand to a bank or anything. With an annual purchase of a Squarespace site you'll get a free domain. They do sell domain names now. They have 300 TLDs. You can get a domain name of your choice. And by the way, your landing page is gorgeous. You know, it's not one of those, you know, I don't want to say the other guys, but you know, the jokey landing pages where you've registered a domain name but you never made a site and they get this disgusting page. No. You get a beautiful Squarespace page. I love Squarespace. And man, it really confirms to me how much I love Squarespace. And I did this during Security Now on Tuesday, Steve mentioned this and I said, "That's awesome." And I literally logged into my Squarespace site, checked a box and now I'm HTTPS://

Mike: Wow.

Leo: I mean look, I'll show you. I'll show you. I go to Settings. You go to Security and SSL and it's a check box. That's it.

Alex: Insecure.

Leo: Secure Preferred or Insecure. But I went there. I didn't have HTTPS. So it said insecure and I said, "No. I'd like to make it secure." That's it. That's the easiest HTTPS I've ever done.

Mike: Who chooses insecure?

Leo: Yea, right.

Mike: The Joker. The thing to describe themselves. I'm pretty insecure.

Leo: I'm insecure. Actually, if you have an existing Squarespace site, make sure you go in there and turn that on because it is fantastic. You can get a free trial right now. And if you decide to buy, you'll save 10% if you use the offer code TWiT. It's also a way you can tell them that you heard about them on TWiT. And do that because Squarespace now advertises on every darn podcast in the world and they got to know you heard it on TWiT, right?

Alex: Just adding to that, my personal website is on Squarespace.

Leo: It's good, isn't it?

Alex: Yea.

Leo: Easy.

Alex: Well I can't code, so.

Leo: Well that's the thing. I mean I can. I for years did my own site from the scratch. I was, you know, self-hosted using WordPress. I used—TypePad. Every possible blogging platform.

Mike: We use it for everything. When my son got married, you went to the wedding. Kevin and Nadia. Put it on there, it was beautiful. Just beautiful.

Leo: It's easy. Yea.

Mike: My wife's food blog in on there. It's like so easy.

Leo: I've now started using it for my pictures. In fact I have a bunch of pictures to upload from my trip because it's like a beautiful portfolio. The new emojis are here. The new emojis are here. We actually had a great interview with Jeremy Burge the founder of Emojipedia yesterday on The New Screen Savers. He was here actually after TWiT last week and I said, "Come back." He was going to the Unicode Consortium Meeting. He's on the Emoji Committee.

Mike: I remember that show.

Alex: There's an Emoji Committee?

Leo: There's an Emoji Committee.

Alex: Wow.

Leo: In fact he tells me that some of the other people in the Unicode Consortium are a little miffed at all the attention emojis get because Unicode is a whole lot more than emojis. It's the character set in Apple and Google and Microsoft and everybody goes in there and you know, it's engineers and they figure out what can we do with the representation of every graphic is. But they also get every year, hundreds of requests, thousands of requests for new emojis and they approved 59 of them. Now, do you guys—I keep asking you millennial questions like you're the only millennials I know. I have children. I have children but you use emojis, right? I use emojis. Is it just moms that use emojis and dads?

Alex: No, no, no. I started out using them ironically to make fun of people that used emojis but then I found the chart of emojis and got totally enamored and I've fallen down the hole since then.

Leo: What are chart emojis? Little graphs?

Alex: Yea. Those are full of my day to day life.

Leo: I just feel like—I mean look, I'm a good writer. You guys are all writers. English is an amazing tool. But it doesn't always communicate things like sarcasm, emotion. And so that's where emoticons came from initially. And emojis I think are a very refined way to enhance prose.

Mike: And the new one helps people that are in disenfranchised groups. For example, there's a hijab emoji.

Leo: I love that they do that.

Mike: There's a breast-feeding emoji and the one in my group, my disadvantage, whatever I said group, pie.

Leo: Pie is back.

Mike: Pie is back and the pie people have to be represented.

Alex: Against the forces of cake, obviously. And the jerks over in the pastry domain.

Leo: The emoji committee has to be very politically correct. It's got to be global, right?

Mike: Right.

Leo: And it also has to be gender neutral. Google's been really strong in assisting this to their credit. So all the career emojis, you know, policeman and stuff have to have a male and female counterpart. They ran up a little—this is weird, a little problem with breastfeeding. Now one would think that would be the domain of women. But I'm told, Jeremy told me, 1% of all men can breastfeed.  Something to look forward to, to aspire to, right?

Alex: Wow. Yay.

Leo: So they, the way they solved this, they didn't want to have a male and female breastfeeding, so they just cut the head off the emoji so there's no apparent gender.

Mike: But look, the fish woman is clearly a woman.

Leo: Oh, they have both.

Lauren: That's the mermaid.

Mike: Oh, they do.

Leo: No, in the emoji committee it's a merperson. And there's a male and female.

Lauren: Oh my gosh, actually that is amazing.

Leo: Isn't that great?

Lauren: Yea. I'm all for about equal representation of mer people.

Leo: Now I can have a fish tail too.

Alex: You always could.

Leo: And I don't have to wear the silly shell bra.

Lauren: Or.

Alex: You could.

Leo: Or do I?

Alex: Gender bending.

Mike: Well if you're breastfeeding, you don't need it.

Leo: Right.

Alex: He's not the 1%.

Leo: I don't know. You don't know.

Mike: Look, there's an emoji that represents all the nuts out there.

Leo: Actually I don't know if these got approved. These are proposed emojis. 59 new ones in the Unicode standard. They won't get there immediately because your operating system has to be modified and so forth. There's a shh emoji although the Unicode committee doesn't describe it as shh because that's not globally understood, they just say finger over mouth.

Lauren: Yes it means different things in different countries.

Leo: What does it mean? What other things could it mean?

Lauren: I'm not exactly sure but I mean hand gestures in general.

Leo: I think in Italy almost every hand gesture means you're a cuckold right?

Mike: I think so.

Leo: I think that's what it means.

Alex: I certainly couldn't comment.

Leo: I slept with your wife. If you do that—anyway, I'm just guessing.  I don't—

Mike: Somebody go to Italy and find out.

Leo: I don't speak Italian.

Alex: Give the recent political decision of the word cuck, we should probably avoid the entire topic.

Leo: Yea, that's—is cuck short for cuckold?

Alex: Yea.

Lauren: Yea. What I will say is that a picture is worth a thousand words so by the transitive property, that means an emoji—

Leo: 59 thousand words.

Lauren: An emoji is at least worth a thousand words.

Alex: An emoji is just kind of a frozen sentiment in picture form, right, so it's kind of a hashtag without words or letters which is fine. It's a cool way to go about communicating. It's not better than words. But it's a useful additive in certain contexts.

Lauren: I find sometimes that it's very important for example, when I am texting with my significant other and I say, "Can you get milk from the store?" and he texts back a dog emoji that means uh huh.

Leo: What does that mean?

Lauren: That means yep, uh huh. That's it.

Leo: Because dogs are subservient.

Lauren: Dog—no, we just co-opted the dog.

Alex: Don't define her relationship.

Lauren: We co-opted the dog emoji as a way for us to acknowledge like partnership, yea, it's like partnership, relationship. Instead of saying smiley face or kissy face, we do dog emoji because it means like agreement or like—kind of like saying Roger.

Leo: Well now if you forget your hijab you can just send an emoji to him and he can send you—the hijab emoji was first proposed by Rayouf Alhumedhi. She's a 15-year-old girl from Saudi Arabia. She told the BBC, during a group chat with their friends on social media, she realized there was no emoji to represent her head scarf wearing woman. I love that.

Alex: She wrote an email in. That's so great.

Leo: And they helped her, actually a member of the Unicode subcommittee said, "You're right." Helped her write a proposal because there's a very specific RFP that they have to follow. And it was approved.

Mike: In hindsight it's very obvious that that should have been there from the get go.

Leo: I agree.

Mike: To me, and I write a lot about writing. And I even have an article out there right now about writing for 2017 as opposed to 2016. Check it out. But emoji are—there's a necessity because of the exposure of social media in my opinion. There's a need for vagueness and emoji fills that need. So emoji helps you be vague. It helps you communicate things without being specific. This is the Finland emoji.

Leo: So Finland, the government of Finland proposed 4 emojis. There's a person in a steamy room. That's sauna. There's wooly socks.

Alex: Because it's cold.

Leo: Because it's cold. But I don't get the heavy metal head banger.

Lauren: Heavy metal. Yea.

Alex: Heavy metal. Dude. Northern Europe is famous for cultivating and making blackened death metal and has made death metal in general very popular, so.

Leo: Finland is the home of death metal?

Lauren: You've touched on Alex's dork talk.

Alex: Finland—yea, exactly.

Lauren: It's death metal.

Mike: It's his people.

Alex: See, it sounds like that.

Mike: Yea, right.

Alex: The baby did a great impression of death metal.

Mike: The baby was actually doing this.

Alex: Its hands were both up. On the day more total bands per capita—

Leo: I should point out, the way it works is there a text description of the emoji and then every company that implements the emoji, Apple, Facebook does their own version of this. So this is the kind of sample that the emoji committee provides. I love it. It's gender neutral, right, so we don't need two. We need one. Could be a man, could be a woman doing the hook ‘em horns. Right, that's what that is?

Alex: Devil horns.

Lauren: Devil horns.

Leo: The hook ‘em horns is Texas like this. This is devil horns for metal.

Leo: What's the difference between hook ‘em horns—

Mike: The angle.

Alex: Well, one's about a steer, one's about—

Leo: The angle?

Alex: Sort of Texas, metal. Texas, metal.

Mike: What if you were into Texas metal?

Leo: So if you're a Texas Aggie and you're into metal you do like one narrow and one wide?

Alex: Actually if you're looking for a band recommendation in Southern Metal, check out Down. Good group.

Mike: What's that other one?

Leo: That's our Rosie the Riveter, right?

Mike: What does that have to do with Finland?

Leo: Woman are strong. Girl power.

Lauren: Girl power.  So I think that this is pretty interesting. I mean obviously you have Unicode emoji which is one aspect of this. But you also have the ability thanks to new keyboard functionality on smartphones, that you can create emoji for whatever you'd like. For example, Joanna Stern from the Wall Street Journal, she actually has an entire emoji set that are drawings of her dog.

Mike: Which were drawn by Nathan Olivares-Giles.

Leo: Yea. Yea, they did it together.

Lauren: And so you can, you can create your own—

Leo: But you can buy that. I bought, or downloaded it from the Apple Messages store and I did.

Lauren: And I think that it's great because although I think that—

Leo: So those are stickers, not emojis.

Lauren: So here's the thing. I think that it's really great and there's a great opportunity to expand Unicode and to create more emojis that better befit the global experience, right? And that more people are interested—

Leo: It's ok. You can leave her here.

Mike: Just use the baby emoji.

Lauren: Yea, baby emoji. Baby alert emoji. But I think that it's great that Unicode were able to expand on it and that it will take some time and I do appreciate the process of it but I also appreciate the fact that there is a grassroots opportunity. If you really love emoji and you want to speak to your friends in a certain way, you know, you can create and download those keyboards, those stickers and really do it kind of DIY.

Leo: I kind of prefer that. I use stickers and I also use animated GIFs and I love that Apple and others have given us a search tool so I can search for baked beans and send somebody a baked bean animated GIF.

Alex: I've never heard of a baked beans animated GIF in my life. Why would you want to do that?

Mike: Somebody in Boston?

Lauren: Some old memes.

Alex: Old memes.

Lauren: Senior memes.

Leo: I want beans for dinner.

Mike: I want emoji.

Lauren: Way back in the depression, we're going to have beans.

Leo: Actually I got a text this morning from my wife. I was up, she wasn't yet. And it was—at first, the reason I thought of baked beans, it was a cup of coffee. It was a nonverbal text. It was a cup of coffee and what I thought were beans. But it turned out I had brought her some beans, it turned out she meant to send me grapes. She wanted grapes, not beans.

Alex: This is why we have words.

Lauren: That's amazing.

Leo: So words might have been a better choice.

Mike: I'm much better with the words.

Alex: I'm much better with the words then with the emojis. That's when I get—if I got paid to write in emojis; that would be pretty interesting though. I'd try it.

Lauren: This story reminds me of a great family tale of mine where my dad got the shopping list to go to Costco and my mother had written down eggs. But instead he bought a Costco sized box of Eggos.

Leo: Ah, see the difference?

Alex: Was that actually an accident or was that on purpose.

Lauren: You know, my dad is a clever dude and I'm pretty sure all of us were like nice.

Leo: I wonder if—this is really fertile territory for couples. They have their own emoji language that they—sounds like you do. And sounds like I do.

Alex: Behavioral language already about how you talk to one another, what jokes are ok, what names you can call each other. It's standard.

Lauren: It's just nice that it's part of the great communication experience. I'm all for messaging apps being enhanced rather than nichifying apps in a way that I don't want to have my app to talk to my family or to my partner. I want to be able to use the platform that I know and love, which is normally iMessage but sometimes actually it's even Facebook messenger. I know, I know.

Leo: No, you know what? I use that as default SMS messenger on my Android phone.

Alex: Facebook?

Lauren: It's great.

Leo: Facebook Messenger.

Lauren: Facebook Messenger's great because then when you switch between phones, Facebook Messenger is really reliable.

Leo: Desktop, phone, it's everywhere, it's federated. This is a real gap actually in what Google's up to in their strategy because they should own this. They should have Allo or maybe Hangouts. They had it for a while. They should have a standard across the board and they don't. So I use—I have Hangouts and people Hangouts me, but on my Google Fi Pixel, I'm using Facebook Messenger as my SMS.

Alex: Do you think Google will ever see, will ever actually build a social product that we all want to use?

Leo: No. I don't know what's wrong with Google. There's something wrong with them.

Alex: Maybe they're not a very social company inside.

Leo: Ah.

Alex: Whoa, hypothesis. That was not a fact.

Leo: Interesting hypothesis though. Maybe they don't get it because they don't like people.

Alex: See, this is why I stop talking.

Leo: I think we should all stop talking because this has been a damn long show. But you know, when you get these people together in a room, it's so much fun, I just didn't want to stop.

Mike: You do an entire show just using emoji. We just put them on the screen.

Alex: I wouldn't make it.

Mike: How horrible would that be?

Alex: It would be horrible.

Mike I say write language. I love language.

Lauren: I'd love to see the chat only have emojis.

Alex: Oh, my gosh!

Leo: Actually, chat is emoji enabled.

Mike: Is it?

Leo: Yea. So—

Alex: Hey guys, can you try that for a second?

Mike: Let's see some emoji chat.

Alex: Baby Corncob. Drama Dude.

Leo: What we'll do is for the next 5 minutes, is chat, no words, just emojis.

Mike: You have the show.

Alex: Can Instaband not—stop using words.

Leo: And while they try to figure out how to do that, we're going to wrap this puppy up. Lauren Hockenson, everybody should follow your Nothing Matters Podcast. I sounds nihilistic, it sounds depressing, it sounds horrible but it's not. It's great. It's fun. It's funny. It's enjoyable, right?

Lauren: Yea. I mean (laughing).

Alex: Delightful, delectable, innovating, it doesn't matter.

Lauren: I mean, this—I can only be you know, a nihilist for so long. You know, I'm not totally dead inside.

Leo: Why don't you do a show that's called Everything Matters.

Mike: That would be a good title too.

Leo: I'm not dead inside. There's another one.

Lauren: I'm not totally dead inside.

Mike: Not totally dead inside.

Leo: There's so many great podcasts out there just waiting to be done.

Alex: Please don't make them. There's already enough podcasts out there.

Leo: There's already enough. Stop. Stop right now. Ladies and gentlemen, Mike Elgan. You're going to stay with us a little bit because you're waiting for a baby.

Mike: Yes and you talk about in America, yes.

Leo: Not here.

Mike: I'm not going to stay here.

Leo: So you are going to stay in the United States because you are our digital nomad. You go all over the place.

Mike: That's right. That's right.



Leo: Is a great site if you're interested in--

Mike: That's also the Twitter handle for becoming—so if you want to follow the Twitter handle, it's a great place. I also have a podcast, It's about food technology and technology. So this is, you know, this is a lot of my travels.

Leo: Travel pictures and stuff. They're so great.

Mike: But I'll be around at least until the end of January because I'm good.

Leo: And I hope we'll get you back.

Mike: I still consider myself nomadic even here in the US, by the way. Being nomadic doesn't mean you have to leave the country. It means that you live wherever you want for whatever reason you want. So I live in Southern California. I live in Northern California. I jump around. I'll go out East and hangout with some of my friends and family out east. So yeah., and, E-L-G-A-N.

Leo: E-L-G-A-N.

Lauren: He only worked for you.

Leo: It's not that hard. It really isn't. I don't know why I always want to add an A or 2 or some other vowels in there. E-L-G-A-N is really simple.

Alex: Yea.

Leo: You are at That's Alex Wilhelm.

Alex: Yes, sir.

Leo: I think I met you.

Alex: Or just @alex on Twitter.

Leo: @alex.

Mike: The coveted Alex handle.

Leo: Highly coveted. That's why you can't ever leave.

Alex: That's actually not incorrect. I have a huge investment there. Time, so forth.

Leo: I could have been @leo. I joined December of 2006. There were no other Leos. But, I declined. I decided to use my full name. And now I'm glad. Because you know what? Matt Honan, remember @mat, M-A-T, got hacked solely because some kids, some script kiddies wanted his three letter Twitter handle.

Alex: Yea, Twitter is not going to let you get away with that if you hack it. So don't steal my name, guys. Please. Don't ruin it.

Leo: It's not ok. Mat still has his handle and those kids, they're in jail.

Alex: Long time. Life sentences!

Leo: No, they're not. Actually I think one of them did go to jail.

Alex: Is that where you get the TWiT interns?

Leo: Yea. We love hackers who've done time because we feel like they—

Mike: Well, they're cheaper.

Alex: If you haven't done time, you can't actually put up with Leo's management style. It's kind of one of those—

Leo: Just call me warden. We do TWiT every Sunday afternoon at 3:00 PM Pacific, 6:00 Eastern time, 2100 UTC. Please join us and watch live. You can be in the chat room. They're doing a good job of emojis. Not everybody can do emojis. Some are doing emoticons. And of course it wasn't too long before the poop emoji showed up.

Mike: That was the first one I think.

Alex: It's a control command space bar if you're on OS X.

Leo: Is it really?

Alex: Yea. Control command space bar.

Leo: That's useful. I have to say that there was a change at the emoji committee. We talked to Jeremy Bruge about that. Originally, as I said, it's not poop. It's frozen yogurt, chocolate. He said, no, it's poop. And an originally it was described as a pile of poop with flies flying around it.

 Alex: Oh, that's great.

Leo: And they decided to change the files for eyes. So now the emoji is a pile of poop with eyes which is—

Mike: And there it is.

Leo: Yea. It's actually creepier than flies.

Alex: The more you know.

Leo: The more you know. Visit your local library, kids. If you want to be in the chatroom, If you want to be in the studio, man, we had a great studio audience.

Alex: Yah!

Mike: Yea, great audience.

Leo: I love you guys.

Audience: (Applause).

Leo: Email We'll put a chair out for you although we accommodate people as they show up, too. Really nice to have this wonderful studio audience. And I thank you all for being here. But really, I know, Westworld, you've got to go and I understand. Thanks for joining us. We'll see you next week! Another TWiT is in the can. Bye-bye.

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