This Week in Tech Episode 861 Transcript

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

Leo Laporte (00:00:00):
It's time for TWiT This Week in Tech. Dan Patterson is here from CBS news, from the protocol Owen Thomas from consumer reports. My favorite magazine been a long time member. Nicholas De Leon we've got lots to talk about meta losing more value in the it's. The, the biggest stock wipe out in history this week, they say it's Apple's fault is it? We'll talk about Google breaking 200 billion in annual revenue for the first time Silicon valley and the mafia self-driving software that runs stop signs and North Korea. You hacked him. So he took down their internet, all that more coming up next on TWiT.

... (00:00:50):
Podcasts you love from people you trust. This is TWiT.

Leo Laporte (00:01:03):
This is TWiT This Week in Tech episode, 861 recorded Sunday, February 6th, 2022. Magic internet money.

Leo Laporte (00:01:15):
This Week in Tech is brought to you, Bob Lineo with Lineo. There are no hidden fees and you can scale up or down without penalty. Get $100 in credit by visiting and by podium. Join more than 100,000 businesses that already use podium to streamline their customer interactions. Get started for free at, or sign up for a paid podium account and get a free credit card reader restrictions apply. And by our crowd, our crowd helps accredited investors invest early in pre IPO companies alongside professional venture capitalists. Join the fastest growing venture capital investment slash TWiT and by new Rafa traditional audio conferencing systems can entail lots of components. Installation could take days and you might not get the mic coverage you need. That's complex expensive, but no Reva audio. It's easy to install and manage no technicians required and you get true full room coverage and that's easy. Economical, learn It's time for TWiT This Week in Tech, the show we cover the weeks check news, and I've got a good panel as always to join us. Nicholas De Leon is here. I'm so right. De Leon on. I always say it wrong.

Nicholas De Leon (00:02:46):
It's De Leon actually. De Leon. Thank you.

Leo Laporte (00:02:49):
Yeah. So the third chimes the charm. Hi, Nicholas senior reporter for electronics reporter for consumer reports. Always a pleasure to have you on day Leon on

Nicholas De Leon (00:03:00):
Daily, Leon on,

Leo Laporte (00:03:00):
Yeah, you say it properly as I should just say that

Nicholas De Leon (00:03:04):
It's a real struggle. You know, when I was a kid, it, you know, de Leon it's pronounced Deon. I think folks can handle three syllables. To be honest with you, we

Leo Laporte (00:03:13):
Deon we'll do it. We'll do it. Owen Owen Perone is also here. He is. Dan Patterson is here. Technology reporter, CBS news. Dan, go. Good to see you. Welcome you too. Yep. You'll see him on the streaming service of CBS news, which is bigger, brighter, and better than ever. A lot of effort being put into that right now. Also speaking to new publications, Owen Thomas is back he's at protocol celebrating two years. And it's still free. No paywall. You're still happy with that.

Dan Patterson (00:03:52):
Yeah, we've, you know, we've talked about paid products down the road, but this still seems like early days right now for that.

Leo Laporte (00:03:58):
It's great Reese source. I use it all the time. Thank you. We quote you all the time. In fact, we're gonna quote you about meta just three seconds. I, you know, there's so many places we could begin here. I could continue with Joe Rogan saga, which gets Wilder and Wilder as we go. But I think we should talk about meta the company formerly known as Facebook, which suffered the biggest stock market loss, biggest wipe out as Bloomberg, put it in history this week shares went down 26%, which is a $251 billion change in value. I wanna though be clear and I'd love to hear what you all think about this, this, this didn't come outta mark Zuckerberg's pocket. This is not, they don't have a bill for 251 billion. They have to pay. This is the stock market valuing the company. You know, it's shareholders, I guess, who will lose money, not, and, you know, to the extent that Mark's a shareholder, I guess that means his, his stock is worth less. And I think some of this is because analysts had, you know, were disappointed, which seems like a terrible reason to take value off the company. Oh, and do you think Facebook met is worth less in, in reality or just in the stock market?

Dan Patterson (00:05:27):
I mean, what is real Leo, you know,

Leo Laporte (00:05:31):
Nfts baby that's what's real.

Dan Patterson (00:05:33):
I mean, what, what's the difference between a share of stock and an NFT? It's all like a belief.

Leo Laporte (00:05:39):
It's a good point, right? It's Fiat currency. Yeah.

Dan Patterson (00:05:42):
Yeah. I mean, you know, a, a share is a is a, a theoretical claim on the future earnings of a company. So I think what, what people were scared about here was not the present, you know, how Facebook is doing, you know, meta, how meta is doing as a company right now, but the future, the fact that users of the Facebook app, you know, the blue app actually dropped first time ever. Right. And also usage. You know, I think the, you know, the desk spiral is not just people like quitting the service or not, you know, Facebook not replacing users, it's losing fast enough. It's, you know, it's usage. And I think that's, I think Facebook is really scared of TikTok as, as they should be. Yeah.

Leo Laporte (00:06:26):
I mean, this should have been in the stock all along because we know young people don't really use Facebook. It's, it's their parents' social network. They use TikTok or app or something else. Then maybe they use Instagram, which is Facebook's, you know, holding action against the youth. Facebook took, I think Facebook actually did a really interesting thing. They took advantage of this moment to blame Apple.

Leo Laporte (00:06:55):
They said it's Apple's fault. We lost 10 billion because of the checkbox in, you know, that you now get on iPhones where it says, you wanna let this company track you. I don't think they can actually demonstrably prove that that was where the loss was. In fact, the 10.2 billion loss came from the reality labs, it's VR effort, which have been very, very expensive with of course, very little revenue.

Owen Thomas (00:07:24):

Dan Patterson (00:07:24):
Those are, these are two, go ahead.

Leo Laporte (00:07:27):
Go ahead.

Owen Thomas (00:07:27):
Those are two things. Go ahead, Owen.

Dan Patterson (00:07:29):
There's you know, there, there's the hard cost of investing in AR and VR, and then I think the 10, the other 10 billion, I mean, and you know, 10 billion here, 10 billion there. Pretty, pretty soon. You're talking about real money. The other 10 billion was missed revenue, right? Like revenue that they could have gotten, but didn't get right. So I think that there actually are like two separate chunks. And like you add that up, that's a $20 billion Delta.

Leo Laporte (00:07:56):
Am I crazy though, Dan, to say that Facebook would like you to blame Apple. But in fact, Facebook, what really doesn't Facebook doesn't want you to know is they have perfectly good. Other means of tracking you. They don't need Apple's ID for advertisers and turning that off is actually meaningless from their point of view, but they would like to pretend it seems to me that that that's, oh, it's killing me. It's killing me.

Owen Thomas (00:08:19):
Well, I don't mean this in the, in the cultural sense, but I, I think all of these issues are real substantial in intersectional. I talk to people at Facebook who genuinely think that the, and, and they, they will stay off record. They genuinely think that the changes in Iowas 14.5 and 15 did kneecap, or at least in the very short term. But I think that the larger picture is certainly this drop in usage, which they have tried to duck into this or roll into this pivot to VR. So all of those things intersect with each other and all of them as the end result, not just result in losing money, but a loss of influence because that's really what money is, right. It's influence power.

Leo Laporte (00:09:08):
The daily active users went from 1.9, 3 billion to 1.9 to 9 billion. Now, admittedly what is that? That's a lot of millions. That's like a million, but when you have 1.9 billion answers, I think it's almost a rounding error. I should we, Nicholas, what do you think? Is it over, should we just throw in the towel? Should Facebook go home?

Nicholas De Leon (00:09:40):
I, I dunno if Facebook should come back. I, I, I have this conversation with, with my bosses and my friends all the time. Like have we reached peak tech? You know, I, I do wonder what, like gen Z, like, are they, are they, so do they even remember a time before technology? Are they over this stuff? Do they not care? Is it not cool anymore? You know, if you're, if you're a parent and you're thinking of sending your kids to college, do you want them to pursue a career in tech? Have we reached peak tech? I don't know. I, you know, I was recently in Puerto Rico for a family thing and I would say just seeing, hang out with friends and family down there, Facebook me meaning the big blue app is still heavily used and certainly

Leo Laporte (00:10:21):
Whatsapp, right?

Nicholas De Leon (00:10:22):
Oh yeah. Whatsapp. I, it, it's funny when I, I probably sent like five eye messages in my life actually. I I'm on WhatsApp all day talking to my family. So I, I kind of have a slightly different perspective on like the messaging wars, I guess. But yeah, I, I, I don't, I don't know if, if I dunno people is over tech, I don't know, especially in the past two years of looking into zoom calls and, and all this stuff where people just burnt out. I, I dunno, but I, I think it's a very interesting question. I obviously don't know the answer. But yeah, I I guess we'll see, you know, I guess Zuck is trying to pivot to the metaverse, which I, I don't know how that will go. I, I suppose I'm, I'm more inclined to be cool with that as a, as a, as a big gamer and as a huge nerd, it's like, that's neat to me, but like, is my adopted mom gonna sit there with a AR or VR headset? All, no, she's not, that's never gonna happen. So I don't know. Very interesting series of events here.

Leo Laporte (00:11:17):
I think you're right. I think the stock market anyway says we're at peak tech and that's over and we gotta find something else. I should point out though, if you bought into Facebook, when it iPod you you're far from underwater, you're, you've still made more than 250 bucks a share since the IPO as my wife keeps telling me. So, so I, I, it's not, it's not the end of the world for Facebook. And I often wonder when you see these kinds of drops, Apple lost almost 200 billion in 2020. And by the way, that would've been a good time to buy some Apple stock because not only they recover, it kept on growing. I often wonder, you know, Monday is the stock market gonna say, okay, we had our sell off let's let's, let's back to business as usual. So that's the real question for me.

Leo Laporte (00:12:04):
I don't care about the stock market so much, but the real question for me is, is this a bellwether? Is it the beginning of the end for Facebook? Is Facebook going the way of my space? Are they gonna be able to make a pivot to augmented reality? Clearly Zuckerberg feels like it he's. He actually had an all hands the day after the stock tumble. He his eyes were red and watery, but he told everybody it was cuz of a scratched cornea, according to Bloomberg who had unnamed persons at the event he apparently said, you know, repeated what he'd already said to in the, in the earnings call that it was the rise of TikTok unprecedented level of competition is the phrase reels competing with Instagram. But he all also said, I want you all to focus on video that this is the future. And I, I guess, does he mean video as in VR

Owen Thomas (00:13:06):
Turned out great last time?

Leo Laporte (00:13:09):
Yeah. I mean their, their homegrown video platform was a terrible flop. Right.

Owen Thomas (00:13:15):
And not just for Facebook, but for media companies as

Leo Laporte (00:13:18):
Well. Yeah. Microsoft flopped with, with mixer Facebook spent a lot of money to bring creators over that didn't go anywhere. Well,

Owen Thomas (00:13:28):
Facebook also, I mean, the last time they did a pivot to video, they a couple, maybe 1836 months afterwards, they said, oops, we, yeah, we did a miscalculation, which caused companies like Mike to just vanish overnight. Yep.

Leo Laporte (00:13:42):
I guess that's one issue with this is it could be that the tremors will be felt throughout the tech market, as you say, Nicholas, because Facebook is so kind of pivotal to, for news organizations for, for everybody in driving traffic that failed Facebook might be bad in general for the tech industry. So maybe there, maybe that's what we're seeing. I, I, I, I find it hard to write them off at this point.

Owen Thomas (00:14:11):
Well, there are platform like unlike MySpace, I mean, those, the comparisons to a previous, his era of tech are just not the same.

Leo Laporte (00:14:17):
That's true. It's not my space. Yeah. That's a really, really good point. Well, anyway, there's the, there's the meta, the meta story such as it is. It's a great number though. 251 billion in value that does hurt in a couple ways. It makes it harder to attract talent because of course you pay 'em and stock options. So it herps in that way might be, make it harder to raise money if they needed to. So there, it's not, it's not a neutral event for, from their point of view at meta, and it's a bad headline, but I don't think it means that they're necess, I mean, 1.9 billion daily active users, that's pretty successful.

Owen Thomas (00:14:59):
You know, one point about attracting talent. They have had problems attracting engineering talent and in the valley, their reputation is pretty bad, at least when it comes to engineering talent. But on the other side, although we talk about all the losses, the $10 billion in, in the the, their meta component, they've attracted a ton of people from Microsoft, a ton and the holo lens. People are pretty off right now because they kill holo lens three. So they've done a very good job of attracting talent experienced when it comes to AR VR and XR.

Leo Laporte (00:15:33):
Yeah. I,

Dan Patterson (00:15:35):
I, I have to think though that, you know, part of the problem here is like mark Zuckerberg is saying, Hey, we're not the Facebook company anymore. We're meta AR and VR is where it's at. So if you're working at meta on the Facebook app, you've gotta feel a, you're a second class citizen, right? Like you're not taken. Yeah, seriously, even though you bring in all the money and that's gotta hurt morale, like how are they going to hire, you know, engineers to, to work on, you know, fixing misinformation or optimizing ads or, you know, dealing with the Apple, you know, the Apple ID issue. That's where I think they're going to feel the pinch.

Leo Laporte (00:16:14):
Although remember Apple is paying $180,000 bonuses to its engineers, not to go to Facebook. So it is a cutthroat competition at Silicon valley for engineering talent. If you're good, you, you know, you can write your own ticket. So all of these companies are trying to keep people not just, not just Facebook. And I don't think Facebook's the only company losing talent either. I think people just move around to kind of increase their value. Alexis Hanian. I don't know if he's the expert on this. He's a VC now did found co-found Reddit said oh, we all knew this was gonna happen. He told Bloomberg Facebook ad products just doesn't cut the must anymore. Thet marketers have started ditching Facebook for advertising. That might be the case. I don't think it has to do with Apple, to be honest with you. I think Facebook has plenty of ways of knowing who's watching what on their platform, but is it the case, do you think that advertisers are turning the, their back on Facebook, that it's no longer the place to go? That would surprise me. What do you think Nicholas?

Nicholas De Leon (00:17:22):
I, well, one thing I will say is that the, I never get better ads and I get on Instagram. Yeah. My, my interests are, are pretty explicit into soccer. I set this sport of soccer video, do games stuff watches. Those are pretty much my three things. And every ad on Instagram is related to one of those three things. And I've definitely purchased several items off Instagram. So I don't know how they do it. You know, I have a mixture of like, don't follow me, don't track ad blocker. I, I, I, I try to put up a fight, I guess. And, and yet the ads on Instagram are, are pretty good. So I don't know if marketers, I dunno. They seem to be having a pretty good time. At least Instagram

Leo Laporte (00:17:59):
Think Instagram nuts to abandon either Facebook or Instagram. FA I, you know, look, we sell ads. That's how we make a living. And I've constantly wore, read about Facebook and Google, just eating up the ad space. And now Amazon, because they have so much more information about the audience. We don't know anything about the audience. And I don't think Facebook's knowledge has gotten any worse. Thanks to Apple. I think that's a, a little bit of misdirection.

Dan Patterson (00:18:25):
I think, where it, where it hurts Facebook from, from what I understand is tracking a purchase. So you get to know this great Instagram ad and it pushes you off to a website and Facebook no longer can tell if you are you know, if you actually like click by,

Leo Laporte (00:18:43):
Oh, wait a minute. You don't think so. Remember, Google was telling advertisers, oh, by the way, we can tell how many you sold because we got the credit card data as well. All of this stuff is sold to data brokers and sold on isn't it don't, they know everything anyway. Do you really think Facebook is in the dark about what you did?

Dan Patterson (00:19:02):
Yeah. Facebook Facebook's payments features have been, you know like they've always had trouble getting the, is kind of universally accepted. You know, I, I still don't see a lot of like even though in theory, you can use your Facebook account, I think, to buy on some stores. I don't see a lot of merchants actually adopting that, but

Leo Laporte (00:19:23):
I don't think you have to, I think that the, if you use a, just use a credit card, that information will filter back to

Dan Patterson (00:19:30):
Facebook. Eventually the merchant, the merchant can link it up, but does Facebook know? And

Leo Laporte (00:19:34):
If there's,

Dan Patterson (00:19:35):
I think

Leo Laporte (00:19:35):
Facebook, if there's a like button or a Facebook bug of any kind under those pages, they know that you went there. I

Dan Patterson (00:19:41):
Think Facebook but on mobile that that's, that's a desktop feature, right? So on mobile, all this links get broken and that's where Facebook's vulnerable.

Leo Laporte (00:19:48):
Do they, the, it, the only thing that button on Apple does by the way is turn off the ID for advertisers. So that, that, that information, that unique code is not transmitted. But doesn't mean that Facebook doesn't see like buttons is that stopped by safari. I know I, I use Firefox and it stops 'em I don't know. Does safari up them

Owen Thomas (00:20:13):
Asari has a private ish feature, right?

Leo Laporte (00:20:15):
I think's that private

Dan Patterson (00:20:17):
Way. Leo ish

Leo Laporte (00:20:23):
Think that's that private. I think these days fingerprinting is so good. I don't, I think it's a, I don't know, it's a safe assumption that you, we, what you're doing is pretty well known by everybody on the web, whether or not you click that button on the IDFA. In fact, there's some re there have been a number of research studies that back that up over the last six months. So yeah, if you're running an ad blocker, but I don't think most people run a blockers yet. I don't know. I think this is interesting. We'll see. Is it the beginning of the end for big tech? I now government is making some inroads Congress is moving pretty quickly on a number of, of fronts. They have came outta, went outta committee, the I'm blanking out Congress. That's good.

Leo Laporte (00:21:13):
That's a good thing. I can't remember her name, our Senator from Minnesota her bill Amy, clocher you? Yeah, her her bill to and I think it was Marsha burn was a co-sponsor to force a goo, by the way, the bill was written with like a paragraph per company. It was very clear who they were aiming at Google Apple to force these third party app stores. And I think that may well pass it, both Senate it in the house and go on to be, there's also a very concerning bill that is back the earn it act which is a terrifying bill, which was we beat once last summer. But Senator Dick Bal and Lindsay Graham have reintroduced the bill. We beat it actually in 20, a 20 that will, according to the EF pave the way for a massive new surveillance system run by private companies just in time, it would roll back some of the most, this is EF F the electronic frontier foundation, Apple, by the way, agrees, it would roll back some of the most important privacy and security features in technology.

Leo Laporte (00:22:33):
It it's a framework for private actors to scan every message sent online. And, and the premise of course, think of the children, the premises, of course, that we've gotta stop CSAM child sexual abuse material. And so O companies need to be held responsible for every bit of traffic on their network. The earn act could also ensure that anything hosted online backups websites, cloud photos is scanned. Remember the, the fight over Apples scanning stuff on your iPhone will get ready. It also weakens encryption, and here's a scary thing about the earn it act. It has strong bipartisan support it. This act matches an act, a similar law that is in front of the house right now, the bill creates a 19 person federal commission. What could possibly go go wrong, which is mostly run by law enforcement agencies, which will lay out volunt best practices for attacking the problem of online child abuse.

Leo Laporte (00:23:36):
The real concern from a lot of people is this will actually just force child abuse underground, where it will continue unabated meanwhile, leaving us in a much less secure and private state. So just a little be aware of C Sam. It also changes section two 30, which is a big issue. In fact, Mike Masick, who's a big two 30 supporter on, Tector had a number of pieces, I think, three talking about the the dangers of the earn it act. Any thoughts Dan Patterson on earn it?

Owen Thomas (00:24:11):
I think anytime we talk about changing two 30,

Leo Laporte (00:24:15):
It's bad.

Owen Thomas (00:24:17):
Yeah. I, I mean, yeah, I it's, I, them, I can pardon me. I can't, I can't tell you my opinions on policy, but I think weakening encryption changing two 30 bad

Leo Laporte (00:24:34):
Mike's headline in the tech is how the earn act is significantly more dangerous than foster foster, which did pass. He says, earn it repeats the basics of lost a playbook, but, and this is very important since earn appears to have significant momentum in Congress. It's significantly more dangerous in multiple different ways that necessarily haven't necessarily been highlighted. 

Owen Thomas (00:25:01):
I will say, you know, we can't lobby Facebook. We can't lobby Google. We can't lobby go. So if we find these policies, noxious lobby, the government yeah. Or

Leo Laporte (00:25:14):
Vote yeah. Or vote or both

Owen Thomas (00:25:17):

Leo Laporte (00:25:17):
Both. Yeah. Actually both might sounds pretty good right about now. Alright.

Dan Patterson (00:25:24):
I do find it interestingly though, that all of these laws, not just not just earn it, but you know, there's another one about ending platform monopolies. Yeah. That's

Leo Laporte (00:25:34):
Bill. Yeah.

Dan Patterson (00:25:35):
They have these really arbitrary cutoffs, you know, like, oh, if you exceed 600 billion in market cap, then you know, then we're going to take away your section. Oh,

Leo Laporte (00:25:45):
It it's totally aim at big tech. Yeah.

Dan Patterson (00:25:47):
Right. Well, Facebook almost slipped below that. So like, are they, you know, like on a Monday, are they going to be exempt from it and on Tuesday, are they going to be subject that's?

Owen Thomas (00:25:58):
Oh, that's interesting. Have they

Dan Patterson (00:25:59):
Thought about how any of this works? Oh,

Leo Laporte (00:26:01):
That's really interesting.

Owen Thomas (00:26:03):
No. And

Dan Patterson (00:26:04):
Another one was like 600 billion in revenue or 600 billion in market cap. And I'm like, you don't, you at Congress don't understand the relationship between revenue and market cap, do you?

Owen Thomas (00:26:16):

Dan Patterson (00:26:17):
It said even more, even Walmart doesn't have $600 billion in, in revenue. So it like, it would apply to literally no one, I mean, these things, you know, these things do get worked out, out through the amendment process and like, you know, the most glaring kind of, you know, oopsies tend to get fixed, but I still think it's worth pointing out. Like, you know, that that's a big tell to me that, like, there's not sophisticated thinking about market structure going into these laws and that's, that's disturbing.

Leo Laporte (00:26:48):
Yeah. Facebook is on the order of a hundred billion a year revenue, something like that. Profit's pretty good though, by the way don't, don't worry about Facebook. They, their profit is still in the 30 billion to dollar, a quarter range. It's doing all right. Alphabet quarterly results came out as well. And alphabet broke 200 billion in annual revenue for the first time. So they did alphabet did not take this opportunity to blame Apple for anything missed there. For 2021, the full year, 41% year over year, jump in revenue for alphabet, unbelievable. A fourth quarter revenue, 75.3 billion. That's up 32% year over year advertising avenue for the quarter 61.2, 5 billion apparently. You know, Apple didn't hurt him, but I think Google, and I think Facebook's in the same boat, have plenty of ways to get information about you Google

Dan Patterson (00:28:03):
And they have Android.

Leo Laporte (00:28:03):
Yeah. They have, they have Chrome, which is the dominant browser. They have, you know, YouTube and they have search. So you're sending, 'em plenty of signals, YouTube add 8.6, 3 billion in revenue in the fourth quarter. Of course there's always the other bets, which always, it's always fun, Google so much money in search. And then they spend it all on Waymo and Verly other bets, 181 million revenue. But I think a substantial loss cloud loss of 890 million. So these are, I'm sorry. I boring. Isn't it? Who cares about money? I don't care about money.

Dan Patterson (00:28:49):
It's boring. I care about money, no money. Money's awesome. You know, I I'm team money.

Leo Laporte (00:28:58):
I'll tell you, this is a, this is something it's money related. It came from Google's quarterly results, but their pixel phones had their best sales quarter ever, which probably isn't saying that much, given that there've not been huge sellers in general, Sundar PCHA. And the earnings call said in Q4, we said an all time quarterly sales record in spite of an extremely challenging supply chain environment. I just got speaking of supply chain. I ordered when the pixel six came out, I ordered a pixel six. I got that pretty quickly. I ordered the case, which I just got yesterday four months after I ordered it, but I got it. Thank God. I didn't drop the phone in between then now. And then

Owen Thomas (00:29:43):
I think it's the first Google phone, just anecdotally that I see in the wild routinely.

Leo Laporte (00:29:48):
Do you see a lot of pixel sixes?

Owen Thomas (00:29:50):
I don't know about a lot, but I, I think on a weekly basis.

Leo Laporte (00:29:53):

Owen Thomas (00:29:54):
Which I, I can't recall on any other pixel phone, so yeah. I mean,

Leo Laporte (00:29:58):
They don't break out sales figures, so we, we just have to go by pet's claim that it's the largest yet, but you know, double nothing is still nothing. It doesn't compare with the iPhone or Samsung's phones at all. All right. Let me take a break. I'm gonna find something that's gonna get you excited. We could talk about Joe Rogan. How about that? I gotta find something

Owen Thomas (00:30:21):
Help pick that's money.

Leo Laporte (00:30:22):
No, it's not. It's not money. Well, it is, isn't it? Yeah. Million hundred million dollar guy. Yeah.

Nicholas De Leon (00:30:29):
I just wanted to add on the point of Google making money handover fist about a decade ago, I had some free Google host. I own my own domain daily, spelled phonetically. And I had a hooked up to Google for enterprise. I got one free email address hosted by Gmail basically. And by social. Yes, exactly. I got an email like two weeks ago saying, oh, remember that free single email address. We gave you a decade ago. Now we're gonna charge you. Yeah. And it's like $7 a month for email. So I'm like a don't you make enough money, Google and B the only thing that, that email did, I'm obviously not paying $7 a month for email. I'm like George Kant. I was like, you're not winning. So all I did was maybe figure out like an alternative hosting arrangement.

Nicholas De Leon (00:31:11):
Yeah. I think I'm gonna go with iCloud or whatever. Yeah. Cause I already pay for that, but I'm like, like the greed of like how many people could have had that free, you know, is it a million almost certain, really not and you need an additional $7 a pop for the, like, it's just, it is it was very disappointing and it made me really question like, do I really like, what else don't I need from Google? Or from Amazon or from any of these guys it's like that, like just to make an extra, you know, couple a month. I'm just reevaluating my entire relationship with all these guys that, how, like, that's how like that's how I work, I guess.

Leo Laporte (00:31:46):
No, I understand. It

Owen Thomas (00:31:48):
Is the same thing.

Leo Laporte (00:31:49):
One more, two iCloud, one more thing that Google's switching off. So you had the, the one free email as well.

Owen Thomas (00:31:56):
No, I was paying for Google services and got a very similar email saying they were raising the price on it. And I, I mean, I did a, this is 2018. I did a story on it. Just the process of quitting, Google, how I quit Google services. It took my entire Thanksgiving week to like order like put in, in like prioritize what Google services are important. Oh, geez. There's all these photos backed up and then to export everything, to kill everything. And I still have nagging Google services following me around. So it's, it is a process. But I did just put everything on iCloud and CloudFlare anyway, Nick, the exact same mindset and process. Yeah. Icloud.

Leo Laporte (00:32:38):
This is not the Google. I wanna point out Dan, this is not your first rodeo. It's not the first time you've tried to quit Google. This is the

Owen Thomas (00:32:46):
2019. That's. That's a, a, a newer post of the, the same old story, but yeah. Okay. Yeah. Okay. It, I mean, I've tried to, I nuked Facebook services and to do a story on, I had to, to start a Facebook account. I mean, it is incredibly hard if you want to quit big tech. It's really hard. Sorry, Nick. I didn't mean to hijack your, no,

Nicholas De Leon (00:33:09):
It just, it just sort of triggered my consumer reports, finding the best deal. And I hope we talk about the Amazon prime increase maybe later in show. Cause that did a similar thing. I'm like, where's my money going? What service might paying for? How do I, how do I MIAX to put in like world of Warcraft terms? Exactly. Yes. Right, right, exactly. Yeah. This is yes. Thank you.

Leo Laporte (00:33:26):
So, so it's not money. That's the problem. It just has to be the right topic of money and we're gonna get right down to it. Min maxing your yes. Your investment in the Amazon prime. O we'll talk about that in just a little bit. We go got a good panel. It's gonna be fun. Dan Patterson's here from CBS, just CBS, CBS news, right? CBS news, CBS Gotta get to slash what happens if I don't do the slash live, be old stuff, get news.

Owen Thomas (00:33:55):
You still get news. Yeah.

Leo Laporte (00:33:56):
You still get news and there's a button on there. It says live. So you can go live.

Owen Thomas (00:34:00):
We can do that too. Yeah.

Leo Laporte (00:34:01):
Yeah. Okay. CBS new

Owen Thomas (00:34:05):
If it was not biz,

Leo Laporte (00:34:06):
But it's great to see you also with his Owen Thomas. Great to have you from protocol. He's a senior editor over there, long friend, longtime friend and always great to have you on and kind of, of relatively new to the group Nicholas Day, Leon. Who's been on many times now. You're no longer the newbie, but it's great to have you. Yeah. That's okay. Yeah. Senior electronics reporter for consumer reports. Speaking of old times, I remember when Lineo first started. Well, gosh, when was that? In the early two thousands, it was so cool. They were one of the first cloud infrastructure companies to offer SSDs running Linux, man. It was awesome. Well Lineo has, is all grown up, man, and it is awesome. It's the industry's best price to performance value for all compute instances, whatever you're doing, shared dedicated high memory doing artificial intelligence, GP two, you get free DDoS protection, free cloud firewall, unfiltered API access, and more from Lynn out.

Leo Laporte (00:35:15):
L I N O D E the original. They started three years before AWS. And they're still famous for predictable flat fee pricing universal across all 11 of their data centers. No weird tiering, no weird regions. You just choose Lineo cuz it's the best you get support better than any because the people who work at Lineo are like us. They understand they're there to help. I, you know, the interaction's always great people choose Lineo who want a better customer support experience because they're independent and, and they, their mission is keep the customer happy, no matter what tier, no matter what level, no matter how much they spend, you are not a number to them. You are the reason they're there. The driving force behind everything they do, their pricing is transparent. It's predictable. It's pay as you go. They really started predictable flat pricing for cloud computing.

Leo Laporte (00:36:13):
And there's still the, the leader in this no more anxiety of, for hidden costs, weird egress fees, things like that. They make it simple to launch and scale in the cloud with li node. Your flat pricing is the same across every global data center. You get an incredible cloud manager. It's very easy to use. There's a full featured API, great documentation award-winning support and it cure. It's proven it's reliable. It's enterprise grade infrastructure. I think that's the one thing, you know, because I've been on line so long, it's not a hobbyist thing. It is for me cuz you know, I use it for projects and you know, practicing coding, things like that, but it is enterprise grade infrastructure. And so many people use it to run their apps, to run their sites for backup for C I C D for AI, for gaming services, their peering relationships are extensive.

Leo Laporte (00:37:06):
They've been in this business a long time. They peer with everyone. Their next generation network gives you the modern infrastructure and performance. You need to innovate at scale you could choose shared or dedicated compute instances. Gonna give you a hundred dollars credit. You can use it on that. You can use it on S3 compatible object storage. Yes, that's nice because your S3 software will work with it. You already know how it works. Managed Kubernetes. Yes. They've got that virtual machines as much power as you need or not line node was rated easiest to use by G2 out in 2021. That's why cloud developers choose because they make managing complex cloud infrastructure, easy, simple bundled pricing, full featured API, a hundred percent human support. They've been doing this for a long time since 2003. So they've got the longevity, you know, they know it. They've been in this business a time, no hidden fees scale up or down without penalty.

Leo Laporte (00:38:02):
And right now get a hundred dollars credit when you go to I N O D I'm a big fan using him for years. Lineo give it a try. And we thank him so much for supporting this week in tech use of port too. When you use that address, So what about it? We can do Amazon prime. What about Amazon prime? A $20 bump, right. In a yearly fee. Yeah. And it kind of makes me mad cuz they say well we gotta pass along costs and it's like, wait a minute. What am I, what exactly am I paying for? Is it, is it prime video? Is that, is that why Amazon Prime's going up? Is it your rocket to the moon? Jeff? Is it your new yacht that they're gonna dismantle a bridge in Holland? For what exactly am I paying for? I think the mistake of going up by that much $140 a year is that it does make people think about it and say, is it worth what I'm getting? What did you decide to?

Nicholas De Leon (00:39:16):
Yeah, well I was, I spent several hours, I guess the day after that was announced kind of researching, you know, give the sentiment online. What are people feeling about this? You know, maybe, maybe, or may not. We will do a story on, on, you know, reevaluating your relationship to all these companies. But I think the thing it triggered in people, like I said earlier, was that it, it just kind of like, what am I paying for? You know, $20 a year is less than $2 a month. Which I'll say two things about cuz I saw all comments about this too. Oh, it's only $2. Okay. Well a that's not the point and B you know, this is something that's drilled into me from being consumer reports. It's like people have budgets. Money does not grow on trees, whether it's $2 or $2,000 people have money allocated that they spend every month. And for you to ask all of a sudden, well here's an extra two hours a month. Okay. Yeah. Maybe, maybe most people can swing that, but it's but maybe they can't. So that's one thing. And then when they try to justify it by saying, oh, well we have the NFL on Thursdays. I don't know if there's a thing on this planet and I care less about them.

Leo Laporte (00:40:15):
I don't wanna help for the NFL.

Nicholas De Leon (00:40:18):
I don't CA if the NFL disappears tomorrow, I'll be like, what are you even talking about? So that, and I suspect a lot of nerds are the same way. Like this is not relevant to me in the slightest. Now I will say I, at the end of all that I kind of, I did run the numbers and what services am I paying for Spotify and Cobas and Google one storage. I did all the math and it, as it turns out for someone literally with my specific set of services it does make sense to keep prime. If anything else, it makes sense to go even further into the Amazon ecosystem, because I can say, I personally can save money by doing prime and Amazon music unlimited because they have the high-fi I means from Pam to pay for Spotify or Cobas, they're, they're very, very specific reason, but it's the type of thing where it's like, you should go over with a fine tooth comb, who are you giving money to every single month?

Nicholas De Leon (00:41:09):
I get the sense that a lot of consumers out there $5 here, five, they don't really think of it, but I I'm here to tell you that stuff adds up and all these little of streaming services, they want you to subscribe to, to watch the flavor of the month television show, which is invariably who care. It's great. Let's say it's great, whatever. It's like, these things cost money and money doesn't grow on tree. So I really do think that asking people, you know, a little more, a little more, a little more it may just backfire because I, I don't know that people are gonna put up with it. It, it, it certainly is. You know, if, if you're a family with, with, with, with, with with nevermind inflation, never have you bought like a ton of chicken breast recently or milk, like prices are going up very, very high. And for now prime wants more money. I don't know. It's very, I don't think it's a good look, especially given how much money Amazon made through the pandemic. It was this recent quarter. Now they're like an advertising Jugg or knot. So you want an extra $2 a month outta why don't you just, you know, it, it, it just smells fishy. So that that's, that's my

Leo Laporte (00:42:17):
It's also the case that PRI made sense when it was, because it was free second day shipping when you would always get that. But a lot of times now you don't, and no,

Nicholas De Leon (00:42:27):
I, I will say in the past year I've had several packages delayed, just gone, miss thing. The other day, I, you know, see, you have a very specific example. I bought go Toshima PS, five game. I was supposed to get here Saturday. And I was supposed to here Friday. It arrived here today. Now, is that a big deal? No, obviously not. But the point is I'm paying for prime to get right. You know, at most two days. So what am I paying for exactly? This

Leo Laporte (00:42:53):
Might be the wrong time to prime because you know, maybe the shipping thing is cuz of COVID and it's gonna get better. Sure. But, or supply chain or whatever, excuse you want to use. Sure. But, but that, this is, this is now, and this is when you're raising it, by the way, Yahoo, finance actually Bloomberg pointed out that a lot that almost half, a little more than half, I'm sorry. 52% of, of Amazon prime members are monthly members. So they're going to $118 a year, which really makes you wonder, is it worth the money?

Nicholas De Leon (00:43:28):
I would just advise folks to, to really look, you know, a calculator and see, see where your money is going every month, because it, it may, may not be worth it depending. And, and it may, you know, it may not be worth it. If you just tweak your things a little, it's like, oh, well, if, if I shop over here or if I tweak my shopping habits this way you, you know, you can, you can make this so that it works for you. You don't, you don't have to be, you know, beholden to any, any willynilly price increase. I do encourage folks to like take the time to, to look at this stuff because it's important. And you know, these companies they don't care, I guess even though they're making money, hand fist you know, no one's looking out for you. So that that's my rant. Yeah. With the prime price.

Leo Laporte (00:44:08):
And by the way, I am an NFL fan and I actually would pay Amazon not to do Thursday on football, keep it on, keep it on CBS and ESPN. And that

Nicholas De Leon (00:44:17):
Was a huge request. They do

Leo Laporte (00:44:18):
A terrible job. They do a

Nicholas De Leon (00:44:20):
Terrible job. Yeah. They were saying a lot of folks were saying, can you just like, maybe, maybe there needs to be two tiers of prime service, one where it's just the prime shipping as it used to be back in the day. Yes. And then one with like all prime plus called with all this other stuff. Okay, great. But a lot of folks are literally just here for the free two day shipping. And now prime is like all this value, all this stuff. It's like, well, I don't, I don't use this stuff. Why am I paying for it? It, people just get frustrated. And like, it's, it's, it's highly understandable.

Leo Laporte (00:44:49):
The change goes into effect fair for 18th. If you're a new subscriber, if you're existing prime subscriber renew now, because if you're in renew after March 25th, that's when it goes up. So if you can renew now you'll save that $20. It's not about the $20. It's really about thinking about, well, what am I getting for? What is now more than $10 a month? You know? That'ss a lot of money.

Dan Patterson (00:45:12):
My question, what

Leo Laporte (00:45:12):
Is bundled in there? Oh, that's the other question who the hell knows. It's a lot of just

Dan Patterson (00:45:18):
Running Amazon, who's running Amazon PR like how, how did anyone inside Amazon allow this to be rolled out as part of the earnings announcement?

Leo Laporte (00:45:27):
Yeah. Yeah. Oh, we made $141 billion, this this quarter and oh, by the way, they had Amazon profits were 14.3 billion in the quarter. It's a trillion dollar company now. Oh. And by the way, we want more money from you.

Dan Patterson (00:45:45):
So tone deaf and think of all the, think of all the union organizers who are gonna say, look at how much, you know, look at how much money Amazon reported making and they're raising their price on prime and what are they, you know, what are they giving you?

Leo Laporte (00:46:00):
Amazon's PR is not great. Remember how they fumbled the sidewalk announcement and got everybody to say, oh, I don't want that. Maybe they're not the most accomplished in the world.

Dan Patterson (00:46:12):
They spend all this time fighting with reporters. Like there's, there's actually a team that is devoted to, you know, you know, asking for corrections whether or not a correction is, is merited. And if they, you know, like, and they're not doing their job, they're not doing their job of like presenting a positive image of Amazon or like, is that a

Leo Laporte (00:46:32):
Lift to hang over from Bezos who was pretty combative? I remember his ex McKenzie writing a nasty review of the Amazon book, the everything score. Oh, putting it on his, putting it on Amazon. I think Bezos is kind of combative. I wonder if and jazzy, the new CEO will maybe tone that down a little bit. It not a good it's. I mean, here we are at tech journalists, so obviously we don't like it, but it's not a good look to get in fights with people who buy ink by the barrel, as they say what do you get? I don't know. What do you get? You get maybe two day delivery prime video, which is pretty good. Somebody in the, in the chat room is captain J is saying, well, you should just drop your Netflix and that'll make up the difference. The problem is not everything's on Amazon prime there's stuff on Netflix that you wanna see. I mean in fact, Amazon prime of all of the streaming services, maybe that's there's I don't know. Is that one of the, I guess if you like the expanse. Yeah. There's good stuff on there. I

Nicholas De Leon (00:47:35):
Guess that was a big show that people liked. They also do include, you know, to their credit. Currently they include free, unlimited photo storage. That was one of the reasons why I was like, okay, maybe I'll, I'll go all in on Amazon. Now,

Leo Laporte (00:47:47):
Do you get your, that is your music free? No. You still pay for your music with Amazon prime.

Nicholas De Leon (00:47:53):
They have Amazon music. They have kind of like, mm, like, like a thin tier that is free with prime 2 million

Leo Laporte (00:47:59):

Nicholas De Leon (00:48:00):
Yeah. Yeah. If you want the real service with 70 million songs and high fi you have to pay for music unlimited, which if you have prime is 7 99 a month, which is less than it's less than the 9 99 for, for Apple music Cobas, which is a smaller service, which is high five. That's like, eh, like $12 a month. So it is, you know, you also get like random magazines like, you know, the February issue of, I don't know, business week or, or like food network magazine, which is like, cool. I'm, I'm not, I'm not a PO, but it just feels so random. And like, it's just on a website, like a list of like pediatrics, it's

Leo Laporte (00:48:34):
The same thing with the the books you get the Kindle unlimited, but it's like, I don't know what kind of books are on there.

Owen Thomas (00:48:39):
Right. You don't get audible. You don't get Comicology. No, no, no.

Dan Patterson (00:48:44):
And, and they could have very easily like lowered the price of Amazon music prime or, you know, or like rolled out, you know, oh, you're getting this much more, you know, free tears or like we're boosting, you know, we're boosting what's on prime video. Like they didn't package it with any benefit to the consumer.

Leo Laporte (00:49:04):
I think this is

Owen Thomas (00:49:05):
You cancel my prime.

Leo Laporte (00:49:06):
Huh. See, I think this is a test. I think Amazon's curious. They know maybe for some people, this will trigger an ex like a, like Dan or Nicholas, a trigger, a reexamination. Yeah. And they're curious, well, how many people, how price sensitive are people to these subscriptions? How far can we push the, in the everything store or maybe it's his successor to the, that Amazon Unbound? I think it's in the everything store. He talk, which is a great, both books are great about Amazon. He talks about the pricing of Amazon prime and they had no idea what to charge. They just pulled the number out of thin air. They had no idea what it would cost them. There was actually a significant risk. It would be a big money loop that a two day shipping would end up costing much more turned out to not be the case. It was a very, it was a huge success with probably the most successful membership club since Costco. I'm just, well,

Owen Thomas (00:50:05):
This is a changing of norms or at least pushing norms in a particular direction to, to see test the boundaries. That's

Leo Laporte (00:50:13):
What I think. That's what I think now. Maybe I'm a cynical guy. I have read it's Brad stone, by the way, both both of those books, which are fascinating studies in business and psychology and a lot of what at least Jeff Bezos would do would be like that. Well, let's, let's see what if we change it 20 bucks? Let's see what happens. See if Dan Patterson notices.

Dan Patterson (00:50:34):
So Leo you're saying that they, they sat around in their Seattle headquarters and said, why don't we make this announcement as in, as ham handed a fashion as

Nicholas De Leon (00:50:43):

Dan Patterson (00:50:44):
And see like, if

Leo Laporte (00:50:46):
Anything, the notices.

Dan Patterson (00:50:47):

Nicholas De Leon (00:50:47):
That's why their PR is so defensive. They're like. And I gotta sell this.

Leo Laporte (00:50:55):
How about prime day? That's pretty successful. And then that's probably a driver. Maybe that'll be the time to announce this prime day instead of during your earnings call I'm here, the prime website on Amazon. I'm gonna press explore my benefits. Here's a page that probably not many people go to free two day free, one day free, same day, free ultra fast grocery prescription delivery, release, date delivery, no rush shipping Amazon day. That's the one where you pick a day and all of your stuff comes on the same day.

Nicholas De Leon (00:51:32):

Leo Laporte (00:51:33):
Which see, I, I guess that eliminates truck emissions. I'm not key by Amazon where you give the driver your, your garage door key and you, they leave your package inside prime video prime video channels, Amazon music, prime discount on Amazon music, unlimited prime gaming. What's that

Nicholas De Leon (00:51:55):
I think you get like free DLC for certain game, which is, you know, I'm, that's my huge free time is gaming, but like game hack

Leo Laporte (00:52:03):
Free in game content though, right? No something else. No,

Nicholas De Leon (00:52:07):
L Lu is separate.

Leo Laporte (00:52:07):
Yeah. Amazon photos, which is a good deal. That's free unlimited, well, not free, but included with membership. Unlimited full resolution, photo storage, Google charges for that now. Yeah. Amazon kids. Plus I don't, I'm not gonna go through the whole list, but there

Dan Patterson (00:52:23):

Nicholas De Leon (00:52:24):
It's a lot I gotta tell

Dan Patterson (00:52:25):
You about

Leo Laporte (00:52:26):

Dan Patterson (00:52:27):
Like the whole foods, you know, savings. It's no longer whole paycheck. If you have prime 

Leo Laporte (00:52:33):
Oh, see, see,

Dan Patterson (00:52:34):
It's pretty substantial. So all they had to, all they had to do was say like, oh, and by the way, we're going to give you $20 off a hundred dollars. Yeah. At whole foods for your first year to, to offset the increase, which they could easily,

Leo Laporte (00:52:49):
I think they got that their back pocket. They're saying, let's see what happens. And then, and then if Dan Patterson quits, we're gonna give you 20 bucks. Let's just see. Let's just see. Do you, do you actually take out your phone and scan your Amazon prime code when you're at whole paycheck?

Dan Patterson (00:53:08):
I do. Yeah. Do you really? Yeah, I

Leo Laporte (00:53:10):

Dan Patterson (00:53:11):
I, I guess I should

Leo Laporte (00:53:12):
To save you a

Dan Patterson (00:53:13):
Lot. I do the Amazon go thing too. Oh, do you? You probably don't have those up in.

Leo Laporte (00:53:17):
No, we don't have them on the north bay. No. Yeah. All right. You also get prime, exclusive shipping benefits on WT.

Nicholas De Leon (00:53:29):
Amazon owns so many things.

Leo Laporte (00:53:31):
They own everything.

Nicholas De Leon (00:53:32):
They own like They, you know, Zappos, they, they own like a lot of

Leo Laporte (00:53:36):
Zappos. You, you get free shipping, free upgrade shipping at Zappos. So I, yeah. You know, maybe, maybe this is like, I'm not gonna quit because I I, I they're gonna buy everything eventually. And I wanna keep my membership.

Nicholas De Leon (00:53:53):
There's also the prime visa card, which I do have, which, you know, it's 5% cash back and anything bought So I use that. And if you're not a prime member that drops to 3%. So I'm further into to shop from Amazon, which I

Leo Laporte (00:54:06):
Make your

Nicholas De Leon (00:54:07):
Money. I don't, especially mine, to be honest. Yeah. But yeah, it is just like, where's my money going here. I don't, you know

Leo Laporte (00:54:15):
And, and if you had to, if you had to put it all together yourself, I think that might be hard to, hard to do so. Right. I'm trying to, I was trying to gin up consumer outrage, and instead we've just said, you know, it's a pretty good deal. Actually. I think I'll stay. I think I'll keep it.

Nicholas De Leon (00:54:35):
I don't think I'm pretty sure the, the journal wrote a story. Is prime still worth it? The other day, it's got a lot of, a lot of people are talking. And again, it's, it's a fairly small 2000 month, not that big, but a lot of people are like, huh, by way, what is what's

Leo Laporte (00:54:47):
Going on here? The Journal's conclusion. Here's why it's still worth it.

Nicholas De Leon (00:54:53):
There you go. We're all in the tank for

Leo Laporte (00:54:55):
All in the tank for Jeff and the company. All of, yeah, by the way, the the mayor of the Dutch city says we're not taking apart. The bridge, don't worry. You saw the, that story. Jeff Bezos's new yacht again, not, not a good luck, Jeff, while you're raising prime costs, Jeff Bezos's new yacht is so big that the shipyard where they make it said, you gotta dismantle the bridge. I like Niks headline on this. Here's the boat that won't bring Jeff Bezos's hair or his wife back feel the secondhand shame, 540 million mega yacht. So big, it's built by a company in a Holland called ocean that it can't fit through the bridge. Although again, I saw I have to have to find that article, but I, I saw the article that said, the mayor said, no, no, no. Cuz he was getting a lot of pushback. We're not gonna not gonna dismantle the historic bridge just for that yacht. All right. You guys are so quiet. I'm I was expecting more, more feistiness over prime. Let me see if I can find something that'll upset you something. That'll get you mad. How about I've been saving this, but I guess it's time to, to play the Rogan card.

Owen Thomas (00:56:29):
Yeah, here we go.

Leo Laporte (00:56:34):
It's interesting. John Stewart said, knock it off. Everybody. John Stewart left his journalist, the daily show host. He's now got a show on Apple. Maybe it's cuz he's on Apple now. He can't be. So he says people should not call for Joe to be censored or, or canceled. I act believe it. I kind of agree. I don't wanna see censorship. But boy, the hate Fest continues. There's now a super cut of Joe Rogan using the N war, pretty old stuff. There's a, there's a video of him laughing hysterically while a fellow comic talks about sexual abuse. It feels like the guns are and knives are out for Joe Rogan. Anyone in the have an opinion on that? Dan you're a journalist should Spotify. What should Spotify do about Joe Rogan? They are gonna post a disclaimer apparently.

Owen Thomas (00:57:30):
Well, definitely journalists shouldn't advise on policy. However and I, I mean, nobody wants to be accused or engaged in censorship. But I, I think it's fair that if you say, if they things like the N word repeatedly, or you have people who are pretty close to racist and Nazi sympathizers, like the people he's had on especially in the early days I think if you have people like Sargon of a Cod who have said horrible things about women, I think if you advance a, a ton of MIS and disinformation about COVID and vaccines, then it's okay for people to say that is offensive. And if you take a hundred million dollars, that means that Spotify owns you. You work for them. They're not a platform like face book and it's not analogous to TWiTtter or QAN that we find offensive and maybe we wanna get, it's not the same. He works for them. And it's fair for an employer to say, Hey, we don't like you saying the N word we're taking the content down.

Leo Laporte (00:58:40):
So my

Owen Thomas (00:58:41):
Worse stuff, the, the whole censorship argument. I have no idea. I have no idea. Nobody wants to engage in censorship. I happen to think that maybe that's a little bit of a red herring and it's a distracting argument. It, it does not talk about the victims. What about people who don't like hearing the N-word because it's a really offensive term. What about the, the fact that misinformation at scale about vaccines is harmful? I, I mean it talking about Joe Rogan, I think focuses a conversation on Joe Rogan and that's great. It's great for his attention, but it doesn't talk about the victims. And I, I don't, I don't ever want to be in a position where like, censorship is bad. Yeah, sure is bad. But you know what? He's done. Some things that many people have been hurt by and you know, it let's maybe talk about those people. And the fact that Spotify paid him a hundred million dollars to do that. Yeah.

Dan Patterson (00:59:42):
Also censorship is done by governments. Yes. Spotify is not a government.

Owen Thomas (00:59:47):
No, there is employer.

Leo Laporte (00:59:49):
They're not, they're not, by the way. They're not. He says, they say we don't own him. We are not his employer. We give him a hundred million dollars so that he would be exclusive on our platform, but we do not.

Owen Thomas (01:00:01):
What's the difference.

Leo Laporte (01:00:02):
Well, we don't own the show. We don't employ him. And somebody last week made the point a good point. You, you get, you knock Joe off Spotify. You actually, more people will hear him. If he goes back to YouTube and plain old podcasting right now is Spotify exclusive. You have to listen through Spotify.

Dan Patterson (01:00:19):
I, I think one, one big mental fix for thinking about these is to stop using the word platform. Like do not allow it. Facebook is not a platform. It's a social network. Spotify is an internet broadcaster. Airbnb is a lodging marketplace. Uber is a ride hailing service. Once you start calling things, what they actually are. It really clear policy decisions. Darn good. You know, it, it clarifies you know, like how we should view you know, actions like, you know, we view, we view CBS as you know, just to pick on Dan's employer as responsible for what is broadcast on CBS.

Leo Laporte (01:01:01):
Yeah. If Dan started down this they'd fire, it

Owen Thomas (01:01:04):
It's look, you asked me my opinion at the very onset of the show. You asked me my opinions and I about a topic. I don't even remember now, but I squirmed a little bit because I had to, I, you're

Leo Laporte (01:01:14):
Not used to be giving an opinion. Yeah,

Owen Thomas (01:01:16):
Yeah, yeah. It's not my job to express opinions. It's not my job. That's

Leo Laporte (01:01:20):
So old fashioned. I love it.

Owen Thomas (01:01:22):
Well, I mean,

Leo Laporte (01:01:23):
Well look,

Owen Thomas (01:01:24):
It really isn't it's I don't even think that that's old fashioned. I think that that harms the trust relationship. I agree. Audiences.

Leo Laporte (01:01:31):
I agree. A hundred percent. I don't old fashion in a bad way. It's a good thing. It's just,

Owen Thomas (01:01:35):
I just can't do my job. People can't trust me. And guess what? People don't trust Joe Rogan either. And now they don't trust Spotify.

Leo Laporte (01:01:41):
Right. It's you know, and it's fair. It's been a surprising pushback. I thought, you know, when Neil young said, well, I'm on my music off Spotify's reaction was probably like mine, like, well, fine, Neil, go ahead. Big deal. But actually it's hurt them quite a bit with the other artists, Neils, Larin and Jonie Mitchell and podcasters saying, yeah, we don't wanna be on this platform. It actually seems to have hurt them. There seems to be a movement to cancel Spotify memberships.

Dan Patterson (01:02:11):
The funny thing is a lot of musicians came forward saying, oh yeah, we're going to take our stuff off of Spotify two. And then they discovered, or someone reminded them, they sold off their publishing rights. Oops.

Leo Laporte (01:02:24):
It's not up to

Dan Patterson (01:02:25):
Some private equity

Nicholas De Leon (01:02:25):
Firm talk to,

Leo Laporte (01:02:27):
Yeah. It's not up to you. Yeah,

Nicholas De Leon (01:02:30):
I guess I would say I have a pretty, I don't know. I think a pretty interesting take in this. I've been, I've been listening to Rogan basically since day one. I used to listen to Howard stern and Anthony as a young man and Rogan was always on the time on the Anthony show. This is like 2000 5, 6, 7. So this is a very long time ago. Back in the day, he used to talk a lot about like, like ancient aliens and like exo-planets and like, was he, I

Leo Laporte (01:02:54):
Kinda like,

Nicholas De Leon (01:02:54):
Can I ask

Leo Laporte (01:02:55):
You? Cause I am not, I am, I've never listened to the podcast. I'm somewhat familiar with him, but was he ever a standup? They call him a comedian. Yes. So he did do standup.

Nicholas De Leon (01:03:06):
Yeah. He's got a bunch of specials. Yeah. He's a standup comedian. Okay. 

Leo Laporte (01:03:10):
So up say all sorts of nutty things and it's understood it's comedy. I mean, you could still canceled as a standup. God knows, but, but there's a certain understanding that you, you pushed the limits stern pushed them.

Nicholas De Leon (01:03:23):
We it's funny to see the Rogan debate popup because I was actually part of a podcast a couple years ago where we analyzed it's called the Joe Rogan experience experience. We had like four episodes. The problem was that man produces such a volume of content that is impossible to, to listen. I like take notes on that stuff. So if anyone's been like listening closely to what this man has been saying for the length of his career, it's kind of been me. And, and I just wanted to add, you know, as 

Leo Laporte (01:03:50):
Finally we've got a Joe Rogan expert on this show,

Nicholas De Leon (01:03:53):
I'm also look, I've also been racially abused in my life. And it's not fun. Yeah, I can think of there, there is one in particular instance, I felt very, I'm obviously not gonna get into it. But to have your person who diminished because of the color of your skin is not fun. Having said that as that person I listened to, you know, obviously you really can't defend the virality that came out This Week in Tech. That's indefensible, but like just some like spicy humor is like, I don't know. It's never bothered me. I is, is that, is that my family background is I've been around this kind of content, you know, frankly, my family's a, a very blue collar family, a lot of law enforcement. It is not exactly as a waspy family that is offended by like words and stuff. So that, I, I, I, I don't know if like you know, the elite media has a very similar background. But yeah, it, it is, it is, it is very interesting to see, like you said, the knives come out. I personally, as someone who has listened, I don't listen as much anymore. Just because I can't stand the COVID talk I'm over this. I,

Leo Laporte (01:04:59):
I talk about COVID a lot now.

Nicholas De Leon (01:05:01):
It's exhaust it's it's, it's like, it's, it's, it's too much. It's it's like, if you're host like radio show, it's like, can we get onto another topic? Yeah. I do wish he would go back to his, you know, like the aliens and like, you know, he had UFC fighters on logo go. Like, I, I like that stuff. I don't know. The, the focus of the show really seems to have fallen off fallen off with the move. And, you know, it was great that you guys had the Spotify debate last week, because I was like, you know, if I'm Spotify, is this even worth the trouble anymore? Like, have people join Spotify, Spotify premium because Rogan is there you know, they'll show growth, right. But with the, that growth have occurred anyway, is he that big of a draw that it is worth the constant and unrelentless the relentless like news cycle, like focus on this, man. I don't know that it is ultimately,

Leo Laporte (01:05:50):
This is probably good for him. Right. More people know about him and probably more people

Nicholas De Leon (01:05:54):
And the idea. And I also think it's kind of funny, the, let let's say Spotify's, you know, this is actually not worth our trouble. We're not we're goodbye Rogan. There's some clause in the contract where they, they sever the relationship. Are people gonna like who his mega fans, are they gonna all of a sudden start reading like the Atlantic or are they gonna, like, that's not happening. So like, I don't, I kind of understand, you know, I don't, I don't think you should be saying fake things about the vaccine. Like, obviously I'm not a fool, but like the idea that the people listening to this are all of a sudden going to be going to be listening to, to Edward Amoro or whatever is like, that seems fanciful and fake. I don't think that's going to happen. And I kind of think that maybe that bothers folks that this, this, this meathead who, who is a commentator, an MMA has such a reach, an influence, maybe that bothers people. I don't know. But yeah, that's sort of, that's sort of my take, I, I, I, I, as, as, as a one time fan of this guy, I wish he would kind of get away from this stuff because it's exhausting and it is not fun. It's just not a fun, you know, let's, let's get back to ancient civilizations and that type of thing. Cause that, that was as a young man, that, that was interesting talk. And he doesn't do that as much anymore.

Leo Laporte (01:07:05):
I, you know, I listen to stern too, and sometimes it's offensive sometimes it's like, I can't believe you're talking about this. But you can turn it off. And I guess the big issue is if he's giving advice to people who believe it about health, which, where he has no Le expertise or he is having pseudo experts on and people are listening to it and not getting, and actually risking their lives because of it is then, then what do you do? Cuz I'm not, I'm not for shutting people's voices down. I, I, I think we just have to roll on,

Nicholas De Leon (01:07:43):
I think he acknowledged him. One of his, he's done a couple apology videos in the past week or so I think in one of them, he said, yeah, maybe we should step away from this. Maybe I should have, I should be better informed. I think he know it's kind, you know, obviously I don't know him obvious a fan from way back. It feels like the show has gotten outta control. It gotten so big that maybe like the power has gotten, this was a show again, this was a show he was live streaming from like his basement or whatever, bucking about the CA. Yeah. Yeah. And it's like, he's so big. And it's so you got that rush of like, you know, people wanting to de platform him. He's his fans egging him on when

Owen Thomas (01:08:17):
Everything has

Leo Laporte (01:08:19):
To, everything has to become that doesn't it these days.

Owen Thomas (01:08:22):
Well, I think that's the challenge here. I I, I don't like the, the polarized conversation. I don't think anybody does, but I, I think it's fair to, I listened to Rogan for a long time too. In 2017, 2018, I heard really offensive stuff about women and about people of color. And I, I stopped listening because I heard a lot of offensive stuff. I don't, I don't recall thinking this guy should be canceled. What I did is dial out. And I think that there is an nuanced conversation that can be had here. I agree that maybe nobody is going to stop listening to Joe Rogan and start reading the Atlantic. But I, I think that it is fair to say, I find this offensive and I find that the, the, the profit from that to also be offensive and, and that's, that's fair and fine to say. I don't think that dismissing that is helpful.

Leo Laporte (01:09:23):
Yeah. Well, and just to give you some ammunition here according to the verge who talked to an ad buyer who wished to be anonymous, it's a million dollars an ad to get an, that on the Joe Rogan experience. It is absolutely a money maker. I, I that money does go to Joe, of course, but Spotify sells the ads. So they're, it's part of the Spotify ad network. So it is very good for Spotify's business, whether they'll make a hundred million dollars in a year or two, I don't know. But there's no quite it's added to their subscriber base and they make good money on the advertisements.

Nicholas De Leon (01:10:01):
Yeah. And it's, it's also, to me, it's like, there's sorry, there's clearly a demand for, for this talk. It's like, it feels like one of like the unspoken, oh, this he's so popular. Let's, you know, Spotify

Leo Laporte (01:10:12):
Doesn't release

Owen Thomas (01:10:13):

Leo Laporte (01:10:13):
And Joe says 11 million listeners per episode.

Owen Thomas (01:10:16):
That's like,

Leo Laporte (01:10:17):
Don't know if I credit that, but that's a lot,

Nicholas De Leon (01:10:19):
That's a huge number of people who are listening to this guy who are not consuming other forms of media. Right. And I think it's like, why, why are people attracted to this? Is it, I, those are, those are like interesting media questions.

Owen Thomas (01:10:31):

Leo Laporte (01:10:31):
Co don't comics often ask this though, isn't this kind of a common discussion among comics. What is my respons of building? Is you become huge. Do I change my act? Do I change my stick? Or do I stick with what I'm doing? What's my responsibility now that I have a large audience, I

Owen Thomas (01:10:48):
Think it's, you don't have to be a comic to ask those questions. I came from radio. I remember stern. I'm a journalist. I ask myself those questions all the time. You can be a normal person and ask yourself what's my respons to the culture and society in which I live. Yeah. Especially if I'm profiting from something. I don't think this has I look, I, I agree with a lot of what we're talking about here, but I don't like the let's wrap this in comedy. Let's wrap this in. I'm just an entertainer. Those all seem like easy excuses for not taking responsibility. And I, I mean, do say what you want, that's fine. But you, you don't get an out just because you're a comedian. I don't get an out for being a journalist. No. And get an out

Leo Laporte (01:11:30):
For responsibility. And he does let let's face it. He sells vitamins and stuff. I mean, he has maybe some incentive to say, well, you just need these immune pills instead of a COVID vaccine, which would be reprehensible if he's profiting from misinformation. There are those who say, in fact, there's an Atlantic article from a couple of years that Joe Rogan is so popular because he understands men in America better than most people do. And we should be paying attention. It, it's no surprise. It's two young guys who listen to Rogan a lot. Did he

Nicholas De Leon (01:12:07):
Speak and certainly did a lot when I was, when I was young, I'm 36.

Leo Laporte (01:12:09):
Did he speak to you as a young guy, as a young man? It was like, he, I

Nicholas De Leon (01:12:12):
Mean more, more than like, you know, barons or so something like that. Yeah. Right.

Owen Thomas (01:12:18):
Yeah. Nicholas, I found the same content. I, I, I mean, I think a lot of people use the YouTube discovery and engine when I would be editing a story or something, it was fairly, I could listen to something else. Definitely. I wanted to hear about spaceships and I wanted to hear maybe a talk with the guy from tool. And I wanted to hear Neil Degrass Tyson. It's when you bundle that in with the, the Sargon of a cods or the, the you know, he had some, maybe I shouldn't name names, but he had some people who have fairly reprehensible beliefs on and he platformed them, he them, and I, I think that there's a responsibility there. I'm not saying, oh, let's cancel pitchforks, but I'm saying that maybe there should be a responsibility and wrapping it in comedy seems like an easy out. Yeah,

Nicholas De Leon (01:13:07):
Sure. But I, as a listener, no, no. As a listener, I, I don't know who, sorry, got like, if I, if like, I, if I'm listening to this, it's like, I'm not into know. I I'm gonna turn it off. If he, if he is, if he's interviewing, you know, Michael Bisping of the UFC, I'm probably gonna listen to that. Like you said earlier, it's like, if I'm the, I, I could tune out of it. You know, if there's, if there's a controversial comedian coming to the look to the local, you know, chuckle hut I don't have to go his fans will go. Whether does everybody like the, that comedian? Probably not. But if the man and they go and they pay and they, I don't necessarily have like an ideological problem with that, I guess.

Owen Thomas (01:13:42):

Dan Patterson (01:13:42):
For advertisers, you know, they, they might object to some of the content, but they're looking at it from the perspective of, you know, these are, these are people who are probably not gonna watch CNN, not gonna listen

Leo Laporte (01:13:54):
To a valuable audience. Yeah. They are,

Dan Patterson (01:13:56):
Are hard to reach. Yeah. and Spotify sells, you know, packages of ads where like, if you want to buy Joe Rogan, you have to buy other ads on the Spotify network. So it's, it's more than just

Owen Thomas (01:14:11):
The hundred million more than just the two 50 million. Yeah.

Leo Laporte (01:14:14):
You know? All right. Let's take a little break. I'm sorry to bring up the Joe Rogan thing. I just wanted to get Just wanna people off you.

Owen Thomas (01:14:22):
You're not sorry. You're

Leo Laporte (01:14:23):
Sorry. Not sorry. Not at all. Our show today brought to you by podium. You know, messaging is the best way to talk to your customers. That's how they want to hear from you. They don't want you to call them. They don't, who wants junk mail? Who wants email? We want text messages. If you own a business, there just aren't enough hours in a day to waste playing phone tag. The list of customers you need to reach. Doesn't get any shorter, especially when business is good. That's why local businesses everywhere. Turn to podium, podium, podium, P O D I U M makes every interaction as easy as sending a text. So everything that makes your business great can get done faster. I'm noticing more and more businesses around me are using podium. My dentist, when I leave, says, leave a review or they, and no, I love it. They send me my appointment. So I just click it. And it's added to my calendar. You can collect payments with podium. You can market to your customers. The ice cream store in town sends me a co it's. The worst thing ever every few weeks. We miss you. Here's a coupon for 30% off ice cream. No

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Does it. It works. They make it all as easy as pressing send. And you won't just free up more time. You'll grow your business. You'll get more done with podium. You'll close deals with customers before the competition even has a chance to call 'em back. Yeah, a lot of times that's how you can get a job issue. A quote, people text you, you text them back. Podium makes it easy with a single inbox. Your employees will like it. Your customers will love it. Join more than 100,000 businesses that already use podium to streamline their customer interactions. Get started for free, or sign up for a paid podium account. You'll get a free credit card reader. Restrictions apply. That's podium, P O D I Thank you, podium for your support of this week in tech do you think is, is the is the pandemic coming to a close? Are we are we, I feel like it's all over. It's all go home, go, come, go out of your home, go to work, Stop, stop working at home. Dan, do you, do you feel that, do you feel that sudden, like, you know, I'm watching a football game and there's a thousand, a hundred thousand people without mass just sitting cheering and everything, huh?

Owen Thomas (01:16:51):
No, I don't know. I'm in, I'm in New York. You and it definitely doesn't feel like it it's

Leo Laporte (01:16:57):
Over, but you guys are you guys are shell shocked. You got PTSD. I mean, you've had two Bigs.

Owen Thomas (01:17:03):
There were maybe fewer people alln was, was felt December and early January felt a lot like March 20, 20. Yeah. Yeah, I weird. I was supposed to go to the office tomorrow, but we're just going to do a remote hit. So I don't know. I mean, I think we were supposed to be back in the office in January and then it's so who knows? I, I don't, I don't think that this doesn't feel over to me, but it 

Nicholas De Leon (01:17:31):
I'm near I'm I'm, I'm I'm in Hudson valley. So let's call it two hours north of New York city. And I, it's not over up here, but I was visiting, visiting a friend in the city the other day. It is overish up here you know, masks, people wearing masks and our county executive said he was not going to enforce the New York state mask requirement. So it's kind of, kind of weird. But it feels like it's, it's maybe winding down a little bit. I'll, I'll some slight insight CR we have been working from home since March of 2020. I have not been back to the office in Yonkers since March of 2020. I may actually go back a month or two we're testing.

Leo Laporte (01:18:11):
Do you miss it? Do you want to go back?

Nicholas De Leon (01:18:14):
No. Do I miss the office? Nobody wants to go back. Yeah, no, no, no, no, no. It it's a nice office too. It it's the nicest office I've ever worked in as a matter of fact, but I've had the most productive years in my life as a worker be working for any organization over the past two years. So I don't know, but yeah, so who's, who

Leo Laporte (01:18:32):
Knows, I mean, there's gonna be a lot of news cuz we're gonna hit a million deaths, you know, that's for sure. And there's gonna be a lot of news about that. But as it start, I don't know. What do you think am I I feel, I just feel lightning and at the same time I notice I'm, I don't, I'm not uncomfortable wearing a mask, so I might still wear a mask all the time. I don't know. What, what, what do you think going

Dan Patterson (01:18:59):
You know, San Francisco has been kind of you know, we we've been pretty far out there in terms of ma you know, masking, like the bay area, as you know, was one of the first area is to shelter in place voluntarily before the state went to, you know, went to shelter in place. So it feels like overall we've, we've handled it really well. You know, the, the continued weird thing is that you know, speaking here from downtown ironically in an office is that many employers are, you have gone remote first or they've postponed yet again returned to office. 

Leo Laporte (01:19:40):
I think that might be one of the, one of the Reasons it's not over is, is we've kind of normalized this way of life. And we like it. And I don't, I, I think you know, people are traveling like crazy. The TSA numbers are really back to normal. People are flying, they're traveling, they're going places. But I think a lot of people don't want to go back to the office. And so that may not happen. I don't know.

Nicholas De Leon (01:20:02):
I mean, even for certain jobs, like my job, I'm basically in Google docs and on the phone or on zoom all day, that that is basically, so you

Leo Laporte (01:20:09):
Don't need to be in the office.

Nicholas De Leon (01:20:11):
I could do that from Jupiter. It doesn't necessarily matter, you know, a decade ago or more than a decade ago when I was at tech French, I was also working from home, you know, tech, French had offices in San Francisco and New York at the time. And I would go into the New York office every now and then but I would work from home and it was not, I, I was, I, you know, I wasn't building Toyotas. I was writing articles in Google docs and talking on the phone to people, right. So it's like, does, does my job, if I'm a business owner, do I, do I need an office with X, many seats? If I could just have the folks work from home, why am I gonna pay for that office space? So I guess we'll see. I agree. I, I think that one of the bigger things coming outta the pandemic will be people's relationship to their jobs and, and, and what is my labor good for? And do I need to be in any specific place to do this? You know, obviously if, if you have, you know, my, my brother is a forklift driver in a warehouse. He cannot do that remotely. He's been going to, to, to the office this whole time. I'm different. So it, it does sort depend on, on what you do, I guess,

Leo Laporte (01:21:09):
How does he feel about the pandemic and, and so forth? How, how has he's had to work? He's 

Nicholas De Leon (01:21:15):
He's had to work I, I, I, I'm reluctant to give his true opinion. It's a slightly spicy opinion. I think he would say something along the lines of you know, people who are so lucky to work from home. Don't like, don't talk to me type of thing. Yeah, yeah. 

Leo Laporte (01:21:33):
I don't blame him at all for that. I mean, they there's so many people who are, who had to go to work regardless.

Nicholas De Leon (01:21:39):
Yeah. He's, he's a little younger, he's, he's 26. And so he, you know, he'll see articles online or whatever, like, oh, going back to the office, should we, should we, and he just shakes his head in so many words that he's like, whatever, bro whatever he, he doesn't have a lot of time for, or a lot of sympathy for people in my position, to be honest.

Leo Laporte (01:22:00):
Yeah. Yeah. I don't

Dan Patterson (01:22:01):
Blame him. I mean, I, you know, I'm, I'm recording a podcast from our office cuz it's just more convenient, you know, I don't have to worry about someone ringing the doorbell. You know, we live in a relatively small San Francisco apartment. 

Leo Laporte (01:22:15):
Have you been to a movie theater?

Dan Patterson (01:22:18):
No. And you know, one of our, one of our favorite theaters, you know, one where my husband and I saw so many movies just closed on the Embarcadero center.

Leo Laporte (01:22:29):
Oh, that's sad.

Dan Patterson (01:22:31):
Yeah. Great, great little movie theater

Leo Laporte (01:22:33):
Closed forever

Dan Patterson (01:22:35):
Closed. As far as we know forever. Wow. I, I possible someone might reopen it as a, as a theater, but yeah. It's, you know, and it, it's hard for that category of like art house theater. Is that something really want to leave your house and, you know, go into a crowd of people for, I mean, I, I think we'll be dealing with like the, the psychological revelation, you know, reverberations of this for

Leo Laporte (01:23:02):
I'm telling you

Dan Patterson (01:23:03):
For years

Leo Laporte (01:23:04):
PTSD, we're gonna be the, the, the COVID generat generation C because yeah. We're like the depression survivors who didn't wanna spend a dime, you know, and we all know them, our elders we're gonna be, you know, our grandkids would say, why does grandpa wear a mask everywhere? It's very interesting. I haven't been to a movie theater since it started or a concert. Oh no, I have been to concerts actually. That's interesting. I, I it's neither here nor there. I just, when we were talking about Joe Rogan, I thought, well, wonder what everybody thinks as we, I feel like the light at the end, the tunnel is that reasonable and it could be an oncoming. 

Nicholas De Leon (01:23:51):
Yeah. I think you look, a lot of the, A lot of European countries are, are winding down restrictions. So that, there's that trucker thing in Canada, the guys demand like that. It feels like it is beginning. Yeah. I think light at the end of the tunnel feels okay. But then who knows? My, my, my, my adopted mother is like who knows as a PhD in biology. And she's like, you have no idea, a snap of a finger that could be another variant. That's like, there could be big one or whatever there could

Leo Laporte (01:24:20):
Be. Yeah, we might. We absolutely, we don't know.

Nicholas De Leon (01:24:23):
And I think to your point of the, the psychological, it's the UN D and the yo yoing back and forth. Oh, it's over. Oh, it's not, oh, it's, that's just, we're done. Even for me, I've been lucky enough to be working from home. It's it is a real blow psychologically. Yeah.

Leo Laporte (01:24:36):
Yeah. I think we're done with, I

Dan Patterson (01:24:38):
Can someone explain to me the trucker protest because aren't truckers like alone in the cab, how are they affected?

Leo Laporte (01:24:46):
Did you see that they, they raised, it turned out. It really was outta the us. And and a lot of the money raised and GoFundMe was really political fundraising in effect. Co-Fund me is actually frozen almost $10 million saying, you know this is Fox news even says promoted capital hill occupied protest appeal. I don't know what that means, but Danny, you doing any reporting on the on the Canadian trucker protest? None. None,

Nicholas De Leon (01:25:28):

Leo Laporte (01:25:29):
Lot of Trump flags in the group, I don't, I don't think they can vote for Trump in Canada. I might be wrong.

Nicholas De Leon (01:25:36):
The only thing I was gonna add is that the, I, I, I'm not obviously not doing any reporting on a Canadian trucker protest, but the GoFundMe shut down reminded me of, I'm sure you remember Leo and O and two I probably you did which eeks way back in the day I guess it was like 2010 when, when like PayPal and visa shut them down. And then they started asking for donations in Bitcoin. And it's just the idea of, of, you know, not, not casting any sort of judgment on this protest, but like the idea of like a fundraising scheme being shut down by a centralized authority was like one of the great, like selling points of crypto back in the day, say, oh, this, this routes around that damage, you don't even have to deal with centralized authorities anymore. So that, that's, that's really what this thing reminded me of more than anything else.

Leo Laporte (01:26:22):
Yeah. Yeah. Okay. I don't, yeah, I don't know. I don't really know much. It's interesting how little we know if you lived in Ottawa, you would know you would care. It'd be a big deal for you. There's, you know, the freedom convoy is overwhelming Ottawa apparently, but I think it's mostly American truckers, which is one reason probably Canadians aren't real thrilled by the whole thing. How about, how about this article from a guy named Owen Thomas SI in protocol, Silicon valley loves mafia's and you should too. What's that? What's that? What's, what's your premise here, Mr.

Dan Patterson (01:27:05):
So there was this this guy named Ryan Breslow, who co-founded a a payment startup called vault. And he went on TWiTtter to say that Stripe, you know, which is kind of the, you know, the big, you know, up and coming player in payment processing and why comedy, which is a startup accelerator that helped Stripe get it started, were acting like mob bosses. And you know, that, that they had actively, you know, tried to, tried to prevent his business from getting off the ground.

Leo Laporte (01:27:37):
You could not attack two more beloved entities in Silicon valley, then stripes. I know why Combinator. I mean, if a, the, if anybody's beloved in Silicon valley, it's these two companies, why Combinator, Stripe is a I should mention is a kind of a, a, a startup camp where you can go, you get a little bit of investment, you get a lot of education, a lot of learning, a lot of companies have come out of Y Combinator. And of course as you mentioned, Stripe is the, is in payments processing,

Dan Patterson (01:28:07):
Airbnb, Dropbox, you know, a lot of you've you've heard of got, got their start here and Stripe is, you know, Stripe is well regarded because they made tools that are really easy for developers to integrate into, you know, their website Software.

Leo Laporte (01:28:22):
I should junction mention that we use Stripe and we are, they are a sponsor, so, okay, go ahead.

Dan Patterson (01:28:29):
Full disclosure, full

Leo Laporte (01:28:30):
Disclosure. It doesn't affect how I, how we cover it obviously, but yeah,

Dan Patterson (01:28:34):
So I, I, I thought it was interesting BRS was, was, you know, playing on this idea that there are these like networks in Silicon valley there often called mafia's as is probably why you use the term mob bosses, you know, the PayPal mafia, but there's also a Facebook mafia, which just means a bunch of alumni from Facebook who went and started companies after they left Facebook. And

Leo Laporte (01:28:57):
This is history. You point out that that's how Intel was started or actually Fairchild was started.

Dan Patterson (01:29:03):
Yeah. It's, I mean, the, you know, the whole history of Silicon valley is groups of employees meeting at one company and leaving to start another. Yeah. now, you know, breast low is, is saying, well, this, you know, this system got kind of broken because like he wanted to, you know, he wanted to bust in and start his company. Well, bolts started three years after Stripe. So, you know, his complaint is that Stripe had lined up all of the, you know, all of the great startup investors. Well, it's considered really bad form if you're a venture capitalist to invest in a direct competitor. Yeah. So they don't will do that. So I didn't really get what his complaint was there. And then he also had like you know, these other theories that that hacker news, which is this website that Y Combinator operates it's, you know, Reddit, like, you know, upvoting and down voting links.

Leo Laporte (01:29:58):
I live on hacker news. I love hacker news.

Dan Patterson (01:30:01):
Yeah. You know, so he claimed that when bolt had some announcement that his, you know, his announcement got voted and Stripe had a similar announcement that got upvoted and the editor of hacker news you know, or moderator went on to explain, well, bolt's post was very, you know, commercial and kind of, of, you know, advertisement like, and people tend to download that. Yeah. Yeah. so this

Leo Laporte (01:30:28):
Guy sounds, I would've just said, oh, he is just a Winny loser, except for the fact that he's worth 11, the company's worth 11 billion actually about to raise for 14 billion.

Dan Patterson (01:30:40):
I know. It's like, if, you know, so if Stripe and why Combinator are mob bosses, they are the most inept mafiosi, it's not working you've ever met. Yeah. but I, you know, I, I, I did think it was an interesting, you know, an interesting discussion to be had about like these networks of people that kind of make Silicon valley run and, you know, are they always to the good something I didn't get you in the piece is that there is a problem with mafia's, which is that, you know they tend to perpetuate a lack of diversity. Like if you have a group of mostly young white men at say PayPal, and they go and start companies, they have a tendency to pull that same, not very diverse network with them. Now it happens a, you know, at PayPal, there were actually a lot of women too who went and started companies, played key roles became investors. For some reason, they get written out of the, the history of the PayPal mafia. Anyway, that's neither here nor nor there, but, you know, I think there, there are, there are, are critiques to be made of mafia's of alumni networks of these connect. But breast did not make them,

Leo Laporte (01:31:47):
It's a story as old as time, by the way, BRS low stepped down as CEO after this. So the story that's old as time is one people getting in trouble on TWiTtter, never, ever a good thing to get, get spicy on TWiTtter, but, but two, that's how it's always worked. When I, when I was in college, I went to a, a prestige university cuz that's where you make the connections and the people who really wanted to be prestigious would join the secret society where you'd really make the connect it's, but that's a hundred years old. It's probably dead old as humanity. And in fact, for a long time was the, the kind of the sung as the praises of San Francisco and Silicon valley is, well, you know, that's where you're gonna have these serendipitous interactions with other people who are working and you'll share information and that's the of it. I'd be hard to stop that. Yes, diversity would be nice. So maybe work on that, but then they can, but that's

Dan Patterson (01:32:48):
Not part of the, that's not the critique he made. You know, I know he wanted to be part of, of this, you know, old voice and love

Leo Laporte (01:32:55):
The join, but they wouldn't let me

Dan Patterson (01:32:58):
And, you know, and again, like his company's been very successful. You know, it's just, it felt a little sour grapes. And you know, on the other hand, we're all talking about bolts now. Yeah.

Leo Laporte (01:33:12):
It was good marketing. It

Dan Patterson (01:33:13):
Wasn't even, you know, it wasn't even on the radar before,

Leo Laporte (01:33:16):
You know, it's

Dan Patterson (01:33:16):
Good. Maybe he won,

Leo Laporte (01:33:17):
You know, it's good marketing is to please your girlfriend by writing a word game and then selling it for seven figures to the New York times. That's good marketing. I'm talking of course, about Wordle. I had to laugh though. Anderson Cooper wants to do it. He's a big Wordle fan wants to do a story of Wordle. Does he invite Patrick Wardle? The creator of Wordle onto CNN? No. He invites Monica Lewinsky on to talk about how much she likes Wordle, but that's what's wrong. That's why I'm only gonna watch CBS from now on.

Nicholas De Leon (01:33:55):

Leo Laporte (01:33:55):
You guys would never, ever do that. Do you play word anybody? John you're playing it. All right. None of these guys play word. Are you actively avoiding it? Have you never heard of it or

Nicholas De Leon (01:34:10):
I'm, I'm actively avoiding it. I saw people on TWiTtter talking about it and like one of my like red lines for me, I like, I'm not,

Leo Laporte (01:34:17):
He hates it. He says all the people sharing their word on there has ruined.

Nicholas De Leon (01:34:22):
I'm happy for them. I hope they have a great day, but I'm not,

Leo Laporte (01:34:24):
I'm not, it stopped by the way it seems to have stopped. It doesn't, It doesn't happen anymore.

Dan Patterson (01:34:30):
I think Monica Lewinsky by the way, has, has had like this incredible second act. Ren. Yeah. I mean you know, and, and good on her for like not letting what a man did to her define.

Leo Laporte (01:34:45):
Oh no, it's great. Find who she is. It's great. It's just, this is kind of, unfortunately the celebrity mindset of, I guess, of CNN, I would invite the programmer on to talk about it, but well, Jeff

Nicholas De Leon (01:34:58):
Sucker, isn't

Leo Laporte (01:34:59):
There to make thoses. No, no, no. He's gone. And apparently Lewinsky is writing for the Atlantic and wrote his story about word in the Atlantic. So that's the see there's a real natural tie in there,

Dan Patterson (01:35:12):
But I think that I, I, I think that the fact that the New York times you knows splashed out I understand like what low seven figures game,

Leo Laporte (01:35:20):
They said seven figures. I've gotta figure it's low, which means a million bucks, but still good on Patrick, right?

Dan Patterson (01:35:26):
Yeah, yeah, yeah. But I think that also tells you how, you know, like how important games are to the New York on strategy. Yeah. And we're talking word games, crosswords, of course, as you know, being kind of the iconic offering from the New York times. But you know, it just goes to show you that, you know, just like pumping more URLs out into the internet is not necessarily the answer to you know, to internet media's problems,

Leo Laporte (01:35:55):
By the way, I want to correct myself. And if, if Anderson Cooper had invited Patrick Wardle on, he would've gotten the wrong guy, it's Josh Wardle. Patrick Wardle is also a programmer well known from Mac, the Mac world, Josh Wardle, who invented Wordle. He's a, a nice Welsh guy who invented it for his girlfriend during lockdown and and is now making some well low seven figure amount of money for it, which is good. And it's smart. It's very smart in the New York times to scoop that up, right. Because you, you, they have word games already and you, you want that word of mouth. You want that attention, don't you

Nicholas De Leon (01:36:39):
Speaking of bundled subscriptions,

Leo Laporte (01:36:41):
That is the future of the times, right. Times has done very well with that. Very smart, very well. I get, I pay for cooking crosswords. In fact, my biggest problem with the New York times, I can't get them to stop sending, delivering the newspaper. I don't want the newspaper. I just want the other stuff and I can't figure out, maybe somebody could tell me, how do you subscribe to the digital only version of the New York times? I, you know, I've, I've narrowed it down to just the Sunday times, but I, I don't want it. I can read it online two or three days ahead of time.

Nicholas De Leon (01:37:14):
The times also just recently bought the athletic that sports website, which, which is a a may, if you're into like sports writing, like in depth report, it's, it's,

Leo Laporte (01:37:23):
It's really good. They deserve that.

Nicholas De Leon (01:37:24):
I've subscribed. Brady's paly since day one. Yeah. Dad's awesome. Yeah,

Leo Laporte (01:37:28):
Yeah, yeah. Alright. Let's talk about Apple. They have responded to Doug regulators who said, you've gotta allow for some reason, Dutch dating apps to have their own in-app purchases. This is one of many places like South Korea and perhaps soon the us where Apple is being forced to give up their their app store, their 30% VI. So the Apple's response was okay. Okay. We'll, we'll give you your own app store. And you'll only owe us 27% commission because we're not doing the payments processing anymore. And the response from the community is amazing. Steven Troon Smith. Who's a Apple developer. Absolutely. This is on TWiTtter, absolutely vile his response. He says, this says everything about Tim Cook's Apple and what it thinks of developers. I hope the company gets exactly what it deserves. Everybody on the executive team should be ashamed and some of them should not be here when it's all over. We all see you. Marco Armit who of course is well known developer and for, for iOS, his overcast is, is a very popular podcast player. He also worked at Tumblr. He wrote, you can just feel how much Apple despises having to do any of this.

Leo Laporte (01:39:07):
And by the way, if you're a developer, they've made it. So there's absolutely no way you're gonna do this because once you pay the 3% to your credit card company and you still pay Apple 27%, and there's a lot of hoops, you have to jump through, you have to have a dedicated app just for it, special app there's you have to do all sorts of paperwork. It's just, I think it's fascinating that Apple is willing just to go balls to the wall, excuse me, testicles to the wall for this Like dudes, you don't read the room. This is not what people are, are talking about here.

Dan Patterson (01:39:51):
You know, I think it, I think what it says is that the app store commission is only marginal about payments. It's about, yeah, that's exactly marketing. Oh, it's about marketing. It's about distribution. It's about, you know, discoverability in the app store. It's about the, you know, you know, the SDK, all the tools that you get as a developer to build your app.

Leo Laporte (01:40:15):
So you're defending Apple, you think Apple's right. Apps.

Dan Patterson (01:40:18):
Absolutely. I mean, you know, like, look, it's, it's capitalism, like this is, this is the cost of doing business. We

Leo Laporte (01:40:25):
Created this beautiful platform. And if you, and we're gonna do all the hard work, if you wanna sell apps here, but you're gonna give us 30%, which is less than, you know Ingram micro charged when I was sell, you know, when you were selling software in a box, they would take 50 or more percent.

Dan Patterson (01:40:46):
Yeah. Now, and, and actually in the Fortnite case, if I, if I recall the judge's decision correctly, they actually found that, you know, maybe there's a case to be made that Fortnite shouldn't have to use Apple's payment system, but that doesn't get Fortnite out of the 30% commission. You know, so, so like fine, go ahead, use a different payment system and you're gonna have to pay Apple 30%. That was well where if I recall again, the, you know, the judge's decision correctly, where that was where that was happening,

Leo Laporte (01:41:19):
Judge got overturned by the ninth district, by the way. And they said, yeah, no, Apple, you don't have to do that.

Dan Patterson (01:41:26):
And you know, it's, it is complicated. I mean, I think pulling apart the payments, you know, it, it is conceptually interesting to pull apart the payments processing part of things from distribution, from marketing, but it's always been kind of a package deal that like, this is what you get for the 30% now is 30% the right price for every app, for every market, for every situation. Probably not,

Leo Laporte (01:41:53):
No. And Apples even admitted that they offer 15% for some subscription services and so forth.

Dan Patterson (01:41:59):
Right. Like after the first year. Yeah.

Leo Laporte (01:42:01):
You know? Yeah. By the way, again, for the second time on this show, I have to apologize. I I inferred that the phrase balls to the wall had to do with male genitalia. In fact, it has to do with a game dot. So I just edit that all out. Go ahead. I don't care. Anybody wants to talk now I'm humiliated. I'm going home.

Dan Patterson (01:42:29):
We're we're just going to take a 30% 30%.

Leo Laporte (01:42:34):
Yeah. Take a third of that. Please be my guest. I don't know. I feel like Apple. So there is a certain amount of rent seeking in what Apple's doing when they, when they say to Amazon, you Kindle app, you gotta give us 30% of books you sell there, or Netflix, you gotta give us 30% of your subs, subscriptions or Spotify. And yeah, they cut it to 15%, but that seems like rent seeking. They didn't, that's not why people subscribe to Netflix is cuz you, you made an iPhone or, or Spotify or buy books on kennel cuz you made an iPhone. That's not Apple, doesn't participate in that success. And shouldn't on the other hand, if, if you make a a, a war on the iPhone and they're distributing it and they're promoting it. Yeah. Maybe that's maybe that should be 30%. That's not an unfair amount. So I dunno,

Dan Patterson (01:43:26):
It gets hard though to, you know, to make an exception here and an exception there, like you want, you want to have consistent rules. And I think that's where that's where Apple, besides the rent seeking, which I think is absolutely a fair critique. I think Apple also wants to have a, a level, you know, a, a consistent approach. Yeah. Yeah. I think consistency though

Leo Laporte (01:43:47):
Has been the challenge

Dan Patterson (01:43:48):
I've spoken with with

Owen Thomas (01:43:50):
Big developers, like Facebook and Amazon, but I've also spoken with very small developers, including a, a review site. They reviewed iOS indie games and their contention is they used the term rent seeking and that they were essentially put out of business. And they, they argued that that Apple is not evenly applying their, their rules and that they would go after companies that appeared to mimic or do some things that Apple did, but better. And that's maybe that's that's, they were a little resentful, but I, I can understand how maybe the rules weren't applied and that, that has generated some pretty ill will.

Leo Laporte (01:44:35):

Dan Patterson (01:44:37):
And, and the pandemic made some things weird because you had you know, like Airbnb had these, these things called experiences. Like you go, you know, you go stay at an Airbnb and you take a pottery class. Well, Airbnb figured, oh, like, okay, well now people aren't saying there, but the Potter still wants to have students. So we'll sell a, you know, a zoom pottery class. All of a sudden Apple is saying that's a virtual experience. And our in app purchasing applies to that. Whereas you know, like they didn't charge 30% on the Airbnb stay or the, you know, or the pottery class before. Yeah.

Leo Laporte (01:45:16):
Let's take you a little break. I'm gonna charge you all 30% for this next commercial. I hope you don't mind. The bill is in the mail. I wonder by the way, what the Dutch regulators are gonna do with cuz Apple's clearly like going. Yeah. Okay. Well, yeah, I like this. I have a feeling that the, the, the Dutch regulators might have something to say about it. We'll watch carefully, our show brought to you by our crowd. This is a really interesting idea for people who, you know, and I wanna emphasize this you know, you're, you're saving up for retirement. You're doing all the right things, but maybe you wanna, you kind of watch in all this excitement happened in Silicon valley, all this money being made you say, I kinda like to participate in this exciting world of, of startups. Here's the problem.

Leo Laporte (01:46:03):
You're not getting the information. You're not getting access to these companies at the right time. Once they go public, once you, yeah, you can buy stock, but, but that's already after the exit. What you wanna do it was get in as the big investors do on the ground floor at the beginning so that when the exit comes, you can, you can benefit from that. And that's what our crowd does. Our crowd is a venture capital firm that has what we call deal flow. They, they know about what's going on in those little startup garages around the world. They analyze companies, look at the ones with the greatest growth potential, and then let you get involved from personalized medicine to cyber security, to proton therapy. This is something new, a 20 billion total addressable market in state-of-the-art labs and startup garages and everywhere in between our crowd is identifying innovators.

Leo Laporte (01:46:56):
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Leo Laporte (01:47:49):
So go there and sign up. It's free to sign up by the way and get deal flow and find out what's going on. It costs you nothing, but once you see something you like, you can get in a single company deal for as little as $10,000. We're not talking millions of dollars, just 10 grand, or get into one of their funds for $50,000. But there is a, and now you should know this, a minimum of $10,000 required to invest. But those terms, again, may vary depending on where you invest. So when you go to the site input, the country you're investing from, I'll give you an example though, of some of the early stage startups you can get involved in right now, you can invest in something called H I L applied medical. They're using Nobel prize, winning technology to bring the most advanced radiotherapy treatment to cancer patients.

Leo Laporte (01:48:35):
It's the world's first laser based system. That's earned them in agreement with proton international, the largest proton therapy operator in the us and Europe. Oh, interesting. So there're already kinda getting into gear. Hi, applied medical, but find out more, you can invest in that and or many other portfolio slash TWiT, but it, it costs you nothing to join, to find out more, to read the prospectuses, to read the information, to follow what our crowd is doing. It's really fascinating. O R C O w U I'm not an investor, but I find it fascinating to read up on this stuff. And I think it's a really good idea to give people access to stuff that normally only people down there on sand hill road get access to join the fastest growing venture capital investment community. Our O CR O

Leo Laporte (01:49:39):
Let's see, Tesla's gonna recall a whole bunch of cars, cause it turns out this is, to me, this is a great story. They even said this when they talked about full self-driving, that it would run some stop signs. Well, now technically that's illegal. We call it here a California stop in California. I don't know what you call it in the Hudson river valley, but it's called a California stop here. Way Tesla did it is. And it's, I think I understand how the engineers are thinking the Tesla, it says, looks at the intersection. There's nobody there. This is what you would do. Right? And instead of coming to an energy inefficient full stop and start, it says, eh, I'm gonna go through at up to 5.6 miles an hour, nine kilometers per hour. So, okay. Here's the bad news it's against the law, but I also understand exactly why Tesla did it. Now you, you are a consumer reporter Nicholas.

Nicholas De Leon (01:50:46):
Oh boy.

Leo Laporte (01:50:47):
What do you think?

Nicholas De Leon (01:50:50):
Well, I will preface this for saying, I don't know a ton about cars. So we'll say that I'm not actually involved in the car team at consumer reports. But I would say I'm in favor of laws and following them like, like you said, I could see the engineering mind being like, well, technically this is more efficient sure. But like there are rules of the, the road for a reason. So I, I, I don't, I actually don't know how I feel about this.

Leo Laporte (01:51:14):
The governor's highway safety association says it is not aware of any state where a rolling stop is legal, but I bet you in Montana. Come on now, come on, man. You get to an intersection you're in the middle of nowhere. You can hear the tumbleweeds blowing. There's nobody in sight for miles. You're not gonna stop at that stop sign. You might slow down like the Tesla would, but you're not gonna stop.

Nicholas De Leon (01:51:38):
I, I, I maybe I'm like a very, like, we, I, I stop at stop sign mean there's and you know, I'm fairly rural area. I stop

Leo Laporte (01:51:45):
You stop. Do you? I blink.

Nicholas De Leon (01:51:47):
I do actually. And I blink when there's literally no up turning. Right. I put my blinker on. I dunno if I'm just kidding.

Leo Laporte (01:51:52):
You're a good boy. You're a good boy.

Nicholas De Leon (01:51:54):
I'm a goodie two shoes on the road. I don't know. 

Leo Laporte (01:51:57):
Tesla will have to recall a whole, I think it was something like 58,000 vehicles. There will be a over the air software update to turn this off. Tesla agreed to the recall after two, not one but two meetings with the national highway traffic safety administration. Tesla did say, well, there haven't been any, we don't know of any crashes or injuries caused by this feature model S sedans and X SUVs from 2016 through 2022 model threes from 2017 to 2022 model wise, 20 through 2020 to, I think it's almost everything, everything that was capable of it. The firmware update will go out in early February, which makes me wonder why they have to do the, the recall. Maybe that's the, maybe that's what's gonna fix it. I don't

Dan Patterson (01:52:46):
Know. I was, I was going to ask, what does a recall even mean in the

Leo Laporte (01:52:51):
Age, if you could software update, right?

Dan Patterson (01:52:53):
Yeah. I mean, you know, like fix the software, probably it doesn't excuse, you know, Tesla for allowing this to you know, get out there in the first place. But I, I do, or if, you know, we kind of have to rethink the, the, the whole system of recalls because that's an enormous amount of expense to get, you know, get the cars back to, you know, a service center and, you know, and, and for what, for an over there update that, you know, you could get with the car just sitting in the garage.

Leo Laporte (01:53:24):
Yeah. I wonder if it's

Dan Patterson (01:53:24):

Leo Laporte (01:53:25):
I mean, this is totally

Dan Patterson (01:53:26):
Speculation, but

Leo Laporte (01:53:28):
I wonder if, if

Dan Patterson (01:53:29):
Using that language

Leo Laporte (01:53:30):
Recall is just smart PR it's language

Dan Patterson (01:53:33):
That we

Leo Laporte (01:53:33):
All understand and yeah. It's not, yeah, not, yeah. Yeah, they say recall. And maybe that's the, also that maybe the legal term, I, I don't know. Yeah, yeah. Right. but it's recall documents posted Tuesday by us safety regulators. I'm reading from the AP say that Tesla will disable the feature with an over the internet software update by sometime this month. Now I had read, it was two kilometers, but it says 5.6 miles an hour. So this pretty fast going through there. And AP interviewed a professor at Carnegie Mellon. He's a professor of electrical and computer engineering. He said four-way stop signs are commonly placed. We have 'em all over in California, commonly placed to protect intersections for kids when no crossing guard is present. He said Tesla's machine learning system can mistakenly identify objects. What happens when FSD decides a child crossing the streets not relevant and fails to stop, this is an unsafe behavior and should never been put in vehicles. I guess I agree. I do not do by the way. I do not do rolling stops. I have family members who do but I, I like to stop. I, you know, it's a token stop. I don't like, I don't like sit there for a second. I come, but I come to a full stop. Right. And I look around and you should do the same, otherwise get your firmware updated. So wow. Have, has anybody purchased any board apes?

Leo Laporte (01:55:13):

Dan Patterson (01:55:14):
No. You know, when when around the time I started at at protocol, we actually had to come up with a policy around

Leo Laporte (01:55:23):
NFT T yeah.

Dan Patterson (01:55:26):
You know, and, and we had a policy around cryptocurrency and, you know, and whether you could hold it and disclosures that were needed. But we struggled to figure, you know, figure out with NFT is like, if you have an NFT, like, does that give you a financial motivation to promote that group of NFTs? Or like

Leo Laporte (01:55:48):
In general?

Dan Patterson (01:55:49):
Yeah. Like what's it, you know, or, or if it's, if it's really unique, then you know, it's just your, you know, it's just a, you know, like owning a piece of art, doesn't give you a motive to like pump the whole art world. Right? Like you just think that your piece of art is, you know, is nice and worth, whatever you paid for

Owen Thomas (01:56:11):

Leo Laporte (01:56:11):
Well, tell that to Paris Hilton and Jimmy Fallon, this clip on TWiTtter from, I, I got a recent tonight show. I know

Speaker 6 (01:56:19):
I heard I'm so happy. I taught you what they were you did.

Speaker 7 (01:56:21):
You taught me what's up and bought an ape.

Speaker 6 (01:56:24):
I got an ape too, because I saw you on the show with people. And you said you got on moon pay. So I went and I copied you and did the same thing

Leo Laporte (01:56:30):
You did. And they have ape's really cool Paris pet. Are you ready? $300,000 for that board ape, Jimmy Fallon's board, a P apparently 200 $16,000. Because what you do is you go back through the blockchain. And at the same time, as he said, I bought one, there was this transaction for the ape that, you know, he has. So that's half a million dollars on, by the way, you don't get the one and only copy of this start. What do you get? You get, you could say, I own it. And you get a URL and that's it. And it is, I think if you're gonna, I mean, maybe I'm cynical, but if, if you're gonna spend $216,000 on that, it's not because you love it so much that it's, or that you're sofa, that it's like small change it's that you hope to sell it on to somebody else for 316,000, right? It's an investment investment. It's speculation. So then to go on a tonight, by the way, 7 million people have seen that clip on TWiTtter alone. I don't know how many millions have seen it on the tonight show and say, look, look, that sounds

Leo Laporte (01:57:48):
Vaguely unethical. Am I wrong? See to me it's now, I don't know anybody wants to defend an FTS, please do, or Bitcoin or crypto or web three. But I am increasingly of the opinion. It's all a scam. It's

Owen Thomas (01:58:04):
I'm I think it's, you should disclose. I mean, I,

Leo Laporte (01:58:11):
Well, they said they owned it.

Owen Thomas (01:58:13):
Yeah. Yeah. I, speaking of, and, and I do work for my organization, so I'm promoting my organization's. That's true. I'm publishing a story tomorrow. Morning's interviews, short story, but an interview with Tim O'Reilly, you know, a famous publisher and technologist, he coined a phrase web 2.0, I think Tim had the first or one of the first commercial websites. And he uses really strong language about NFTs and crypto. We have some video that we'll publish, but he's, he, I don't know if he uses the word scam. Wow. But he references the, the trading back and forth of NFTs, which is pretty common to boost their value. And he does call it a pyramid scheme or that it's like a pyramid scheme. He would is, he was pretty okay. With the technology, you know, the underlying, he blockchain technology, fascinat, blockchain. Right. But, but the use of it, he, I mean, look, O'Reilly knows his stuff and he is a trusted person. He has

Leo Laporte (01:59:15):
A, I think he has a blockchain conference. He has a lot of conferences. He has a lot of confidence. I think he had a blockchain offered. So he's not a, he's not against blockchain. He's not a

Owen Thomas (01:59:23):
Fool. Yeah.

Leo Laporte (01:59:25):
He, nor is he a fool? I think I really liked him a lot there.

Owen Thomas (01:59:27):
I don't think he's against crypto or NFTs. I think he's, he is smartly pointing out the behavior around these products. I don't know that I would call an NFT or cryptocurrency actually te these are products that come from blockchain technology, but that these products have pretty scam like behavior around them. And if you go to the very top of, well, I, I won't get into the pyramid scheme stuff, but it really, some of the behavior seems to be pretty similar to it.

Dan Patterson (02:00:02):
It, it did strike me that a lot of people who were buying NFTs early on were people who were very heavily invested in crypto. Now, if you convert your crypto to Fiat currency, that generates a transaction that the, you know, that may or may not get reported to the IRS, but the IRS is definitely going to be interest student when you convert your crypto to an NFT, not as clear to me that there is a taxable transaction that at least that the IRS can kind of pin down. But you know, I, I kind of wonder if there is some of that motivation of like you, this is basically a way we can get, you know, get our value out of crypto and, you know, out of a fungible cryptocurrency and into this non fungible token, there's also a ton of wash trading. Basically meaning trading like for like, which when it happens with stock stocks is pretty suspect. So I think we have to look at that pretty carefully in, in the NFT market.

Leo Laporte (02:01:11):
Well, and as Dan pointed out, there's evidence now that people are buying their own NFTs to get the price up to kind of stimulate some interest in the NFT.

Owen Thomas (02:01:20):
I think fortune magazine published this story. It's, it's not my reporting. It's I think fortunes

Leo Laporte (02:01:27):
Buzzfeed has discovered the guys behind the board chimps, the the B Y B a Y C the board apes yacht club. And it's interesting, they've, they've, they've attempted to be pretty anonymous, although they've now confirmed that that is in fact, they are in fact, the creators of this a couple of liberal arts majors, writers, journalists and they lived in Florida and they thought, you know, we should do this. They're not even the artist, by the way. They thought, eh, be kinda, they were both in their thirties, met while growing up in Florida, according to Buzzfeed, and both had literary aspirations, they both were interested in crypto, wanted to create some sort of NFT collection, came up with a concept of rich apes living in a swamp clubhouse. So they hired a freelance illustrated to draw them partnered with two engineer is co-founders to execute the collection.

Leo Laporte (02:02:21):
And they've been selling them. They have, this is actually, this is where you get the profit is they make money, not just from the initial sale, cuz remember they didn't sell it direct to Jimmy Fallon or to Paris Hilton, probably somebody bought it and sold it and bought it and sold it. And they eventually got to them. They made $2 million from the initial sales of the tees, but they get a 2.5% royalty in all future trades. So every time that Ft is sold, they get 2.5%. So there is some, there is some money in this. I don't, I don't think there's scammers necessarily. I don't think anybody's a scammer in this. Exactly. But I think you should consider the source when you hear people pumping up the notions of NFTs or crypto or web three, because they may have a vested interest in in pumping it. Go

Dan Patterson (02:03:11):
Ahead. The whole point is we did not know who these two co-founders of Borday yacht club even were until Katie.

Leo Laporte (02:03:19):
They were not tops.

Dan Patterson (02:03:20):
Yeah. Yeah. You know, did that great reporting in Buzzfeed to, to uncover their identities. And she's gotten tons of criticism. People are saying it's boxing,

Leo Laporte (02:03:30):
She's docs. Interesting.

Dan Patterson (02:03:33):
Yeah. I mean, it's just reporting. Yeah.

Leo Laporte (02:03:35):
But no, and it's appropriate because for accountability reasons, I think people shouldn't know who this is. That's still in this it's

Dan Patterson (02:03:45):
What are the, there, there is in the crypto culture, this you know, kind of sort of like in the gaming world, this idea that you have pseudonyms and that you have semi, you know, some semi form of anonymity. Yeah.

Leo Laporte (02:04:00):
Right. I mean, well, that's the whole point of blockchain, isn't it is that there's no central authority and everything's recorded in the blockchain, but it's not recorded with your real name. It's recorded with your account number or your pseudonym or whatever it is you're using to identify your holdings.

Dan Patterson (02:04:17):
But someone actually used the, the, the blockchain to discover that big crypto project was being run by someone who had been involved in a previous scam. Yeah. and they did all of that, you know, through blockchain analysis.

Leo Laporte (02:04:31):
Well, and that's how people like mark Cuban defended in Katie's article saying, well, look, this is all out in the public because this is in the blockchain. Everybody can inspect the blockchain and, and you don't have to know their real name, you know, their blockchain reputation. It's an interesting point.

Owen Thomas (02:04:48):
Here's, here's what Tim said, just a short quote. When I hear a lot of people say, oh, there's so much money going into this. It must be valuable. And therefore it's going to be successful. I actually have the opposite reaction when there's so much money going into it. And then he quotes the famous Upton Sinclair line. You know, it's hard to convince a man of something when he is invested in it. I'm paraphrasing there, but we'll post the whole video tomorrow. His point was he him seeing the web, the first web bubble come and go? The technology, the underlying framework of the internet of course, was technologically sound. But the products that were built on top of it had so much FUD around them. So, or, or so much hype around them that it, it caused this bubble. And a lot of people got hurt in that bubble. And, and that's the underlying thing of what Tim is saying is that the tech is one thing. The hype is another thing. And that if this bubble pops people could get hurt.

Leo Laporte (02:05:50):
Yeah. I can't wait. I will listen to that. Or watch that story tomorrow. That

Nicholas De Leon (02:05:56):
Sounds really, yeah. I look forward to reading Dan because that sort of like Jo with my, like the tech is very interesting as, as you know, people tech, it feels a little, feels a little hypey. It feels a little if Paris Hilton is on Jimmy Fallon, like look at this like that. My spitey sense is, is tingling a little bit there. But I will say it's also interesting to see companies continue to like experiment you. He just launched a bunch of NFTs last last week or two weeks ago. They're very similar to the NBA top shot stuff, top shots. But on the other hand, EA said again a week or two ago that that blockchain is not something they're actively pursuing. You know, after the previous quarter they said they were pursuing, I would like to like just fast forward, like maybe five years to see where all this, and if is this, is this just flavor of the month? Just like every marketer at an org is like, we gotta get involved in NFTs because the kids are into it. And it just ends up being nothing. It, it feels, again, the tech is, is super cool to me, but it feels like this particular implement, like, I'm, I'm super not impressed with like ape pictures on TWiTtter. Like, I'm sorry, like that's no know, like, I don't know, like even, even you have the octagonal like, oh, cuz you pay for TWiTtter blue and you've, you've what I

Leo Laporte (02:07:06):
Just made an opt Toal agonal profile that you been used it then that's fine. I know.

Nicholas De Leon (02:07:11):
But on the other hand, if people get, if, if they feel, if it, if it like does something for them and they feel cool by having that, I also have no problem with that either. But it does feel a little hypey and a little a little weird, I guess, as, as it, as it currently exists.

Leo Laporte (02:07:28):
Reed max max Reed is his name. Reed. Max is his subst stack actually did a little digging and it's kind of interesting. The inner relationships Jimmy Fallon is represented by CAA, which is by the way, an investor in open C, which is the number one NFT marketplace and also is representing NFT collector zero XB, one who owns NFTs from the board API club and another CAA client Austin. Kucher also an invest to an open sea. Kucher Kush Kucher is starring in a Netflix movie with Reese Witherspoon who owns the world of women NFTs, who oftens to be married to a CAA agent. I think it can get a little bit crazy. In fact, he's, he's got one of those crazy maps that you tie the strings from here of there and everything like that. And I'm sure it's a little tongue in cheek, but it is kind of interesting how this, and I have a few, you know, these things happen in Hollywood and elsewhere in other communities where they, they, these trends burn through and everybody's oh, I gotta get one. I gotta get one. It just you know, I feel like maybe people should be cautious. That's all just, if it's, if it's money, you don't need go ahead. But there seems like there might be other things you could do that would be more useful. Boy, I'm wondering what Google's intentions are with stadia.

Leo Laporte (02:08:55):
It seems like it's slowly winding down while everybody else with their streaming gaming systems is just getting started. Stadia has apparently killed their white label version business insiders. How about the business? Yeah, I thought it was, well, it wasn't initially, but then they pivoted anyway, just another buyer beware, I guess. And speaking of buyers does,

Dan Patterson (02:09:25):
What does Google need to be in, in all of these lines of business? I

Leo Laporte (02:09:29):
Mean, yeah, maybe not, you know, maybe, I mean, I think, I think their mode of operation is well try everything and, you know and kill it the minute. It's not a good idea. We're not pro profitable. And that gives us a better chance of finding the next big thing than a company like Apple, which is saying, well, let's spend a hundred billion dollars on self-driving vehicles and maybe that'll be the next big thing. I think Google's a little bit more like, let's let a thousand flowers bloom, but there's a downside to it, which is the people who use Google services start to get a little worried that their favorite's gonna disappear too.

Nicholas De Leon (02:10:08):
I think one of the issues with stadia was always kind of the, the specific business model. It wasn't quite the Netflix of game, like compared to game you,

Leo Laporte (02:10:15):
You had to buy the game. Yeah.

Nicholas De Leon (02:10:16):
You had to buy the game so that it never actually made sense, like as a consumers, like why would I do this? Again, compared to Microsoft game pass, I say, oh, that's just, that's part of my, that a a month. Yeah. It's it's bun. Like I play on my phone or, or stream on my laptop that that's kind of cool. I've used game pass streaming. It works fine. You know, I happen to have a decent internet connection. Of course, that's kind of like, you know, that's the trick, right? If your internet is good enough or not, but yeah. Stadia I don't know. It had a weird how they structured that always felt wrong basically.

Leo Laporte (02:10:48):
Yeah. All right. Let's take a break then we'll wrap up with a few few shorties little quickies. We've got a great panel. I'm so glad to have Dan Patterson here. CBS And we'll look for your interview with Tim. Tomorrow. I think Tim is a smart guy. Really interesting. I can't wait to hear what he has to say about all of this at Dan Patterson on the TWiTtter. Do you have a special, super secret drop for people who want to give you tips or anything like that?

Speaker 8 (02:11:17):
Nah, just proto or

Leo Laporte (02:11:19):
Email. Okay. There you go. That's all you need. Owen Thomas from protocol, senior editor over there doing great. Boy. I love protocol. Give our regards to Megan, Megan. Moroney's over there. Absolutely. Yeah. Anything you're working. You wanna talk about

Dan Patterson (02:11:35):
Actually speaking of money I have a disposition on the stock market dropping tomorrow in protocol source code. So

Leo Laporte (02:11:44):
Good. Can't wait.

Dan Patterson (02:11:46):
I'll try to, I'll try to make sense of it all.

Leo Laporte (02:11:49):
So you kind of have a newsletter.

Dan Patterson (02:11:52):
I do my, my, you, my day job is senior editor of of protocol FinTech, which is now a daily newsletter. We're really excited, but five days a week. And occasionally they let me out of my cage and write for source code, which is the flagship newsletter over here.

Leo Laporte (02:12:10):
Nice. Very nice. I am always enjoy your reading, your writing. I enjoy reading your writing, but not writing your reading cuz I don't write. I hate writing also with us. Speaking of writers, he is the senior technology or electronics reporter for consumer reports. Nicholas Deleon. Great to have you Nicholas, you are, what are you working on?

Nicholas De Leon (02:12:33):
Yeah, I'm, it's funny, I'm say working on a crypto thing now for CR that should be published within the month. Maybe that's, that's kind of a tricky thing to, to do. If, if I may, if I could publish a side project, then we I have a podcast, we talk about wristwatch, a Saco and RO likes news called the hour time show. Just a fun thing for if, you know, give me something tech related during the week to opine about so the hour time show

Leo Laporte (02:13:01):
H O U R or O are. Yes. H are like, like the hours of, of hour time. Yeah. Show wristwatch review.

Nicholas De Leon (02:13:10):
Yeah, it's a fun little side. Nice.

Leo Laporte (02:13:13):
What are you, what, what are you sporting these days? What's on your

Nicholas De Leon (02:13:16):
I actually have on today, I just got this from, I have an, or I am not quite in Rolex money quite yet. But this is an orient Bambino. Where's my camera. This is kind of a fun little 

Leo Laporte (02:13:27):
I love wrist watch wrist watch. Yeah. You know, it's sad because I only wear an Apple watch now cuz of, I don't know why it's I, but I love wrist watches. Kevin Rose of course bought a, a jinky and

Nicholas De Leon (02:13:41):
Yeah, no, I, I had a story in jinky in December about how the Apple watch like was my gateway drug. So to speak into

Leo Laporte (02:13:48):
Watch to know,

Nicholas De Leon (02:13:50):
I know I, I didn't know watches existed frankly until I got the Apple watch and was using. And it was like, oh, it kind of like got the wheel, the, the gear spinning or whatever. And so yeah, the, I, I have the article in oinky going into that. So yeah, I nice. It is. I wear the Apple watch nowadays mostly just for like fitness stuff for like cycling or, or, or working out or whatever. It, it is the nice to not have the constant, like buzzing of, of messages and WhatsApp and all that stuff. Just, just, just the time is good enough for me. So

Leo Laporte (02:14:19):
Kevin I has so much more money than I do. He doesn't. So, you know, he's wearing these most amazing, beautiful, you know, hundred thousand dollars wrist watches. And that's my problem with this. I love wrist watches. I think they're beautiful, but I'm, I'm more of a Timex guy than a, you know, a tech Philippe guy. And but I wish I had, you know, at the same time, the idea of having something worth a hundred thousand dollars on your wrist, that just seems unconscionable to me. So I don't know. I, I actually shouldn't say that that's how much Kevin's watches cost, but we did go to a dinner with him at the French laundry that was sponsored by some high end swish Swiss watchmaker. And they had a guy there with little magnifying glasses on little hammer and he was, he was building watches and filing stuff down. It was like wild hand. These things are handmade. It's amazing.

Nicholas De Leon (02:15:12):
Yeah. I had an editor in New York city about a decade ago who, you know, he would hold up a picture of the magazine in the back. There was invariably like a Rolex or omega ad. And he was like, Rolex pays for all of your salaries. And I was like a 25 year old. I was like, oh yeah, I guess I'm a rank and file. What do I know? Those watch companies spend money. So very

Leo Laporte (02:15:32):
Interest, big money, big money. Oh yeah.

Nicholas De Leon (02:15:34):
Yeah. It's like,

Leo Laporte (02:15:36):

Nicholas De Leon (02:15:37):
Interesting. Anyway,

Leo Laporte (02:15:38):
Someday, but I, you know what? I can listen to the hour time show and I can get my watch fixed at a, I have a Lisa gave me and it's a beautiful Cartier tank watch, which is a kind of very okay. Classic. Beautiful watch again. She, she says, why aren't you wearing your tank watch? I said, well, I can't watch. It would look dopey to have two

Nicholas De Leon (02:15:58):
Watches. That's a debate in the watch. Can you double wrist? No. Schwar cough did back in the day. If I'm

Leo Laporte (02:16:04):
Not sure. Norman or Norman Schwar

Nicholas De Leon (02:16:06):
Norman Schwar storm

Leo Laporte (02:16:07):
Norman. Wow. Double watch. He probably had one that was Iran time. I rock time and don't

Nicholas De Leon (02:16:13):
Remember, there's a couple photos of him. But that is a debate in the community because then it's like, okay, then I'll wear the Apple watch. And then like a, a real watch.

Leo Laporte (02:16:22):
I've been thinking I could probably wear the Apple watch around my ankle. It would probably work.

Nicholas De Leon (02:16:30):
I haven't tried it CI hasn't tested it. So

Leo Laporte (02:16:32):
I don't know, test it. Would you, our show, they brought to you by new Ava, new Ava. You've got the, you know, the huddle room, the conference room, the big one where you have people come in and stuff and maybe you've looked at well, how can we get the audio better? You probably had the speaker phone on the table. Right? Terrible. That's the worst experience ever? How can we get the audio better? So maybe you went and you talked to a, you know, a big audio technical firm. And you know, they said, well, you know, we gotta bring the designers in and we gotta spec it out, measure everything. We gotta do some echo testing and stuff like that. And then we gotta get the mics and they all, they gotta put 'em on the table when you gotta tape of a mark where they are.

Leo Laporte (02:17:13):
And oh, by the way because of COVID protocols, you gotta sanitize in between meetings and there's gonna be wires and there's speakers. And we got a technician in there every few weeks, cuz he's got calibrated. This is not what you want, but I have a better solution. A leap in Teo that has transformed conference rooms. It's called Neva, N U R E V a. It's as simple as a soundbar, you could install it yourself. No wires, no microphones, just their patented microphone, missed technology. The microphones are in the soundbar, but they work. So there are no dead zones that it's as if there are thousands of microphones filling the room, virtual microphones, you can hear everyone everywhere, no matter what way they're facing. No matter how they're social distancing, you could just talk and move naturally. And you'll be heard by everybody. The remote part participants.

Leo Laporte (02:18:09):
It's amazing. It's got continuous auto calibration. So there's, you know, your room is always ready to use with optimized audio. You don't need an outside technician. You can install it yourself. It's a 30 minute DIY job. Just hang. If you can hang a soundbar, couple of screws and boom you're in, you can do Neva, which you can save you a lot of time. And if you have multiple rooms, you'll use the Neva console, which is awesome to manage the rooms, gives your it department the power to monitor, manage, adjust systems from anywhere. They don't even have to go to the room. They can just do it all from the console. Nevas brilliant. It sounds great. It works saves you thousands of dollars. It simple. It's modern. Ask yourself. You wanna go with that costly, complicated traditional system or do you wanna make the leap to simple economical Nova and you are E find out more. It really is a brilliant solution. And as we get back to work, as we start having those meetings, some people are remote. Some people are in office. You are gonna really want to have this in your conference room,, N U R E We had a great week on TWiTtter. We have prepared a small mini movie for your enjoyment watch. Like we don't actually know if

Speaker 9 (02:19:26):
The pixel six is their best selling pixel device yet it's too heavy and it's premium. This Stacy is premium. Not, yes, it's too heavy for my delicate floppy wrists. Look just damaged me forever. I'm I'm not the grumpy one today. Two you grumpy, not crazy. Wow. Grumpy previously

Speaker 10 (02:19:51):
On TWiTtter tech news

Leo Laporte (02:19:53):

Speaker 9 (02:19:54):
There's the real estate market. And then there's the virtual real estate market.

Speaker 11 (02:19:59):
And there is basically the monopoly game. But so instead of using a traditional game board, they use maps of real cities where you can then buy and trade. I just put in my own address and turns out that somebody had bought the address of my property in this game a couple months ago. And it was now renting it out

Leo Laporte (02:20:18):
This Week in Tech. Enterprise tech

Speaker 9 (02:20:20):
PC mag started answering the big question. What is the difference between a VoIP and Ucast, which is unified communications as a service? The bottom line really is the definitions are not real clear

Leo Laporte (02:20:36):
All about Android,

Speaker 12 (02:20:38):
The Samsung galaxy S 21 Fe always as I recommend, make sure you have a case on them, despite it being made out of plastic or I recommend you have a case on it. And we're importantly supporting big Mo dial

Speaker 9 (02:20:53):
Twit. This is the year big tech is out. Big Modi is in.

Leo Laporte (02:20:59):
We should mention, by the way, speaking of Samsung, we will be covering Samsung's event. This Wednesday is 10:00 AM. Eastern 7:00 AM Pacifics on I'm making Jason Howell do it. He will come in and you can watch Samsung. It's expected. They'll announce the S I think the S 22 and probably a stylist and maybe some other things as well. So Samsung unpacked, Wednesday, February 9th, 10:00 AM Eastern 3:00 PM, GMT 7:00 AM Pacific time, and watch our live stream of that. And of course, as with all of our live news streams, you can you can then watch it after the fact on the TWiT feet, if you don't like ads on this show or any show you can watch, 'em also on your ad free feed as a member of club TWiT, I hope you are a member. If you're not $7 a month gets you ad free versions of all of our shows, you're paying us.

Leo Laporte (02:21:53):
So we don't have to advertise to you. We don't have to do anything. So get that you also get access to the discord, which is always fun. We have a really nice community in there and TWiT plus feed, which has not only some of the shows we don't put on the air, it material that's before and after each show that we don't make a podcast out of it has some unusual shows like our entitled Lennox show which is getting its own feed Stacy's book club, which is monthly and is really fun. The GIZ fizz with dity Bartolo, and we just launched this week in space club, TWiT members. We'll get to hear that first because we wanna give 'em a chance to to start the show in a, in a friendly environment. So it'll appear only on club TWiT at first, but eventually of course, we hope to make it a public show our newest show.

Leo Laporte (02:22:44):
And we can do that by the way. It's an audio only show thanks to members of the club. So please, if you're not yet a member help us do what we do best, which is make great content for you by going to TWiT. All right, one more thing, as long as I've, as long as I'm haranging you we also wanna encourage you to take our TWiT on audience survey. I said, we don't track you. We don't, but from time to time, we like to get to know our audience a little bit better advertisers wanna know and of course it helps us develop content more to your liking. It's our annual survey. Once a year, go to 22 for the 2022 survey. Shouldn't take you more than a minute or two and it really helps us. And of course it's completely voluntary.

Leo Laporte (02:23:28):
So you don't have to answer any question. You can skip 'em. You can not take the quiz at all, but if you do wanna help a little bit, it's a great way to do that., 22 South Korea hack Tim Zoe dust, the whole country hermit kingdom. He's a us security researcher. And apparently he found out that the north Koreans did I say South Korea did I meant North Korea? There's a, somewhat of a difference. North Korea had hacked him and other, I guess his handle is P four X gone after him and other Western security researchers trying to steal their hacking tools, find out what they knew about software vulnerabilities. He says he managed to prevent them from taking anything of value, but he was so upset by north Korean state sponsored hack, targeting him personally. And by the lack of any visible response from the us government, he said, this is an article from wired Andy Greenberg writing.

Leo Laporte (02:24:40):
Of course he said after a year of simmering he said I'm gonna take matter into my own hands. It felt like the right thing to do here. If they don't see we have teeth, it's just gonna keep coming. So he said, he looked into, it found numerous known, but unpatched vulnerabilities in north Korea's systems, they, for instance, a known bug in engine X that MIS handles certain and HTTP headers. He found ancient his word versions of Apache. He started to examine north Korea's own national operating system, the red star OS, which he described as an old and likely vulnerable version of Lennox. He was able to single handedly launch a denial of service. I dunno why I'm laughing, but I think it's like, I'm laughing cuz it's great. Single handedly launched a denial service attack on the entire nation, partly because they only have a handful of routers connected to the the global inner net. He said he largely automated his attacks periodically running scripts that enumerated the system still online and launching exploits to take them down for me says P four X it's like small to medium size pen test.

Leo Laporte (02:25:59):
Pretty easy, interesting how easy it was to actually have some effect there. And so I don't think he took it down for very long. I think as I remember, it was just a few hours, but totally took the nation of North Korea offline

Owen Thomas (02:26:17):
Cyber is a symmetrical.

Leo Laporte (02:26:19):
Yeah. Wow. I think that's what, what a story, huh?

Dan Patterson (02:26:24):
That's what's scary to me because you know, if you look at the situation in you know, in Ukraine and and Russia, I mean, yeah. Russia, we see from satellite images that Russia is moving all of this military equipment and troops. And what we don't see is what Russia might be lining up in the cyber realm or what Ukraine might be preparing as a, you know, as an asymmetrical response. That's, that's kind of

Leo Laporte (02:26:54):
Other security researchers have also said, maybe you don't wanna mess with it cuz maybe we have stuff going on that you might interrupt. So maybe just, you know, it's not the right way to ago. Oh yeah. You know, in other words you don't wanna them to suddenly harden their systems.

Owen Thomas (02:27:13):
Yeah. Law. Enforcement's always gonna say that.

Leo Laporte (02:27:16):
Yeah, that's true. I just, I like this story and I don't like this story. Blackberry has decided to sell all its patents to a non practicing entity kids. We know what that means. Right? Non practicing entity, 600 million. I can't blame them. That's a good amount of money. They sold it to catapult IP innovations, which doesn't make anything or do anything. In fact, it was created specifically to buy these assets. So they brought in, I guess investors Blackberry gets 450 million in cash, a promissory note for 150 million. What is what is I cattle pulled IP, get the right to Sue. And so I think you're gonna see maybe not just maybe not, you know, let's not, let's, that's judgemental the right to charge royalties and then Sue, if they don't get paid,

Dan Patterson (02:28:13):
I I'm surprised that, you know, Google, Microsoft, Apple, like, you know, why wasn't there a consortium of industry players who, who came out and, you know, made a, made a decent market clearing bid for

Leo Laporte (02:28:27):
That's a good, Google's done that before actually they've bought up old patents and said, we're not gonna you know, we're gonna indemnify everybody. We're not gonna in assert these patents go ahead, have at it. So should, should we say shame on you Blackberry? Or maybe we should wait and see, we'll

Dan Patterson (02:28:49):
See it, it, you know it, if you think about it, the patterns were going to be with a non practicing entity one way or another cuz Blackberry is way out of the

Leo Laporte (02:28:58):
Yeah, they don't do it. Yeah.

Dan Patterson (02:28:59):
The, the mobile business.

Leo Laporte (02:29:00):
Yeah. They actually had license some of these technologies. So there's money to be made on it. Maybe it's just a license. Maybe it's just, they're gonna license make, make money on licensing. Maybe that's it. I shouldn't assume. Shouldn't assume, but I agree with you Owen. It would've been a smart thing to do for Microsoft, Apple Google companies that make devices that use these patents to maybe just get together and buy 'em up. Let's see North Korea, I think I've covered everything us has or the house anyway has passed a bill to invest in chip manufacturing, R and D. This is the America Capac act of 2022. The Senate passed something similar last summer, the us innovation and competition act. So the bills will have to be reconciled. The house version includes 52 billion in funding to help enemy conductors companies build new factories to fund research and development. The president says he will sign that as soon as he, it comes to his desk. So this is probably a good thing. It's a, it's a direct way to address the chip shortage and encourage new factories to open in the us.

Dan Patterson (02:30:18):
It, it is, but I mean the, you know, on the scale of time that it takes to build a factory, is that really it's good. Take a

Leo Laporte (02:30:24):

Dan Patterson (02:30:24):
Yeah, yeah, yeah. And I do think it, it is fascinating though, the, the ongoing chip shortage often it's not the most cutting edge chips. It's these older chips that, you know, get embedded and, you know, do really simple functions, like, you know, roll your window up or down in a car. And the fact that we're out many shortages in those is is telling

Leo Laporte (02:30:48):
Yeah, actually a good article in business, insider car companies stand to make billions by charging you monthly fees for a features like heated seats, unless they can't get the heated seats in general motors actually stop putting heated seats in some of their vehicles cuz they couldn't get the chips.

Dan Patterson (02:31:04):
Right. Cuz you need like a, you know, a temperature, you know, you need a, a, a thermometer basically to make sure that the heat doesn't get, you know, too high. Yeah. and it's all of this little sensors all of this little electro mechanical, you know features that you don't really think about. And yeah, a lot of manufacturers have taken the approach of like, okay, you're not getting power steering in, in your car.

Leo Laporte (02:31:32):
We in our TWiT community forums, TWiTt community, I got great message. From cortex underscore M zero, cuz we were talking about this in these legacy nos in the heated seats. And he wanted to address this cuz we've also talked about how much Samsung spending 17 billion, a bill of factories Intel spending 20 billion to build factories in Ohio. We've talked about how the big chip GE are stepping up TSMC. He said there's a also significant investment in additional fabrication capacity for legacy nodes. Ti ti is making a huge investment, three new fabs under construction of the United States. One due to be online this year one next, however, he says, every vendor I hear from, I guess he must work in this industry, says their backlogs have no end in sight. The CEO of Swiss based St. Micro electronics told analysts last week, his company had about 40% more orders than projected capacity for 2022 40% more than they can make that's despite St.

Leo Laporte (02:32:37):
Bringing on whole new fabrication plants in LA Italy. Also, despite the fact that he said in January, that his company was sold out for the year, other companies, which have recently opened fabs, included phon in Austria and Bosch and Dresden. I'm not sure if these are operating in capacity yet, or if they're running at low capacity west setting up tooling and qualifications thank you, cortex for that extra information. So yes, it is often these older chips, but there, there, there's a response to that as well. So but, but maybe not pizza maybe next year, maybe next year,

Leo Laporte (02:33:16):
Guys, I'm gonna let you go. It's been a, it's been a blast. I, you have a wonderful week. I thank you so much for joining us. Nicholas Deon from consumer reports. He's their senior electronics reporter. It's funny that you mentioned you're gonna do something on crypto, cuz I felt like this morning on the radio show, I spent about 10 minutes just trying to explain blockchain NFTs and web three. Yeah. So the people cuz people hear of this and I don't know. I think even for me, it took me a while to even understand what what's going on.

Nicholas De Leon (02:33:47):
That's one of the hardest part of this article. I don't wanna give to it. Sorry about the article stuff, but like just explaining all this like Kaka ma stuff magic internet money and like, and like the imagine, you know, it's easy enough to talk to like people who do deal with tech every day, but like for CR it is like the most mainstream audience like in publishing.

Leo Laporte (02:34:07):
Right. And you don't really a challenge. You don't wanna, you don't wanna say to them, you know, even your dollar bill is made up. It's just a piece of paper kids.

Nicholas De Leon (02:34:16):
That's what I've tried in the past of people just like looking

Leo Laporte (02:34:18):
Scares the hell out of them. They don't want hear them. Yeah.

Nicholas De Leon (02:34:20):
It's, it's, it's very, so it's challenging and you know, it's the only reason we're we're even doing is people have asked is like, can you talk about these topics? You know, there's some, oh, by the way,

Leo Laporte (02:34:30):
You gotta do in 1500 words. So get to

Owen Thomas (02:34:33):

Nicholas De Leon (02:34:34):
Yeah. Like double that. Oh good.

Leo Laporte (02:34:37):
It's a lot.

Owen Thomas (02:34:38):

Nicholas De Leon (02:34:38):
It's it's I mean, it's fine. I enjoy I, I think the topic is just inherently interesting again, like we were saying earlier, some of the products may be a little hypey or whatever. But we wouldn't be doing it folks didn't ask us to they

Leo Laporte (02:34:51):
This stuff. Yeah. And, and, and, and as, as you were saying, Dan, and I can't wait to hear the interview tomorrow with Tim O'Reilly, but there is some very interesting technology here that probably is gonna be around for a long time, like blockchain in interesting uses. And so it's important for people to understand that too. I think Dan Patterson's so great to have you technology reporter, CBS news, CBS Don't forget. You Now, do you have a regular time slot or anything? I mean,

Owen Thomas (02:35:21):
No, I do segments throughout the week. And I, I write stories. So tomorrow I'm on in the 7 48 Eastern hour. But it could be the afternoon, evening. It's when sometimes it's when news breaks other times, it's when I have a story. 

Leo Laporte (02:35:38):
I am really glad that CBS is taking streaming seriously because I I've always thought CBS news was like the quality it's it ever since Edward Armour it's the, the Tiffany network. And I I hope that that standard still applies. I think it does. And we need it. So I'm glad that the, that they're taking streaming seriously. This is obviously the future of broadcasting. Yes.

Owen Thomas (02:36:04):
Yeah. Yeah. We take streaming seriously.

Leo Laporte (02:36:07):
Somebody in the chat room wants to know just a question. You don't have to answer it. Are you really tall or do you have a very low ceiling?

Owen Thomas (02:36:15):
No, I have a, a lofted apartment.

Leo Laporte (02:36:17):

Owen Thomas (02:36:20):

Leo Laporte (02:36:20):
It looks like you're scraping the scraping the ceiling in there. He has big hair too, right?

Owen Thomas (02:36:25):
That's that is true. Now I'm just a, in a, it's

Leo Laporte (02:36:29):
A low, it's a it's New York. What do you want? It's they don't have room. They don't have room for high ceilings. It's very, very still island. There's not a lot of room. Thank you. Dance red to have you. And of course, always a pleasure. Owen, Thomas. I hope to see you at the theater someday soon. Think the last time I saw you in person was at the golden gate theater in San Francisco.

Dan Patterson (02:36:51):
That's right. Was it Hamilton night or 

Leo Laporte (02:36:54):
I don't remember. But you were with, I think you were with Ian Thompson and you were just coming out, were just going in and it was great to see you. And, and remember since

Dan Patterson (02:37:06):
Remember theater, remember. Yeah. Theater,

Leo Laporte (02:37:11):
You know, Lisa and I were all set to go back to New York and then they close Broadway again. So we're just gonna have to wait, just have to wait. It's great to have you on. Thank you for being here. Protocol is thanks for having me very good publication Thanks to all of you for joining us, by the way we do TWiT Sunday afternoons, we take all the weeks' news. We, we mush it up into a great big ball and then throw it at you. All you have to do to watch live is go to, or you can go to And and we do that live stream about two 30 Pacific five 30 Eastern 2230 UTC. People will watch live like to chat live that's at You can do it with a browser or an IRC client doesn't matter, or in the discord channel.

Leo Laporte (02:37:58):
If you're a member of club TWiT after the fact, every show we do is available on our website for most of the shows, audio and video, although, as I said, we're gonna try some new audio shows which is cool. is the website TWiT to sign up for club TWiT, to buy mugs or face diapers with the TWiT logo on it, whatever it is you wear in the, in the, yeah, we have really good looking masks with all our, with the, like you could have the security now mask, which I think would be a good conversation starter to have Steve Gibson on your face. That's a TWiT that TV's slash store. You have two ways to interact with us after the fact you can go to our, which is our discourse, forums, regular kind of forums, online forums.

Leo Laporte (02:38:47):
We also have a Mato on, kinda like TWiTtter for the fed averse. There's a YouTube channel for this show and all the shows. So you can, the video best thing to do would be subscribe in your favorite podcast player. So you get it automatically. And if your podcast player allows for reviews, please leave us a five star review. Let the world know you listen to the world's longest continuous running technology podcast, 17 years, 17 years. We're gonna celebrate an anniversary in April, right? John, the 2015, 2005 17 plus two, carry the four. I think it's 17 years. I'm pretty sure. Thank you everybody. We'll see you next time. Another TWiT. This is in the, can

Speaker 2 (02:39:40):

Speaker 13 (02:39:41):
Doing the, doing the, doing the, doing the.

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