Code/red: Bitcoin Beltway Bucks and Disappearing RadiumOne CEO Rants
// HAPPENING TODAY
- Facebook will proclaim itself the future of mobile advertising at its f8 developer conference in San Francisco
- Yelp reports first-quarter earnings.
- FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler drops by The Cable Show to stir the Open Internet rules pot.
There Are Some Things Bitcoin Can’t Buy. For Everything Else, There’s MasterCard — Right, Senator?
Bitcoin is officially an issue of interest inside the Beltway, complete with grandstanding senators and an associated lobbying spend. MasterCard has retained Peck Madigan Jones to represent it in Washington, and according to the lobbying outfit’s latest LD-2 disclosure Bitcoin is one of the key issues on its agenda. What’s MasterCard’s angle on the virtual currency? Hard to tell, and the company isn’t providing much in the way of detail. “We were gathering information in connection with recent congressional hearings to better understand the policy issues around virtual and anonymous currencies,” MasterCard spokesman Brian Gendron told Code/red.
Twitter Commerce to Focus on Items Costing $140 or Less
In addition to its ad network, Facebook will be talking up its commerce plans today at its f8 conference. What about Twitter, which tapped Ticketmaster’s Nathan Hubbard as its head of commerce last August, but hasn’t said much about his efforts since? No news yet, Dick Costolo told Re/code’s Mike Isaac yesterday: “Yeah, I’d say we’re still in the exploration phases of it right now. What’s important is that it’s commerce that’s unique to Twitter. So, what’s going on in my world, in the moment, right now. Not just something that’s working for some other platform.”
T-Mobile CEO: That Sprint Subscriber Loss? All Me.
T-Mobile CEO John Legere: “Sounds like a lot of people took my advice to #SprintLikeHell”
In Other News, Trojan Mulls New Native Advertising Division
Tinder’s brief flirtation with advertising is getting serious. Chatting about their plans for the casual-encounter app in which IAC holds an ownership stake, execs for Barry Diller’s conglomerate said they’re getting ready to monetize Tinder in the most obvious of ways. Said Greg Blatt, chairman of IAC’s Match Group, “The nature of the Tinder user experience presents itself with real opportunities for native advertising that certain of our other products don’t.”
Fired RadiumOne CEO Rants Disappear From Internet
Looks like fired RadiumOne CEO Gurbaksh Chahal is getting better PR advice. Tuesday afternoon, both of the indignant I-am-the-victim-here blog posts Chahal published to his personal website following his misdemeanor plea to two counts of domestic violence and battery disappeared (you can still read them here and here). Purged along with them, pretty much every Chahal tweet related to the debacle all the way back to April 22nd. Chahal’s “Success With a Moral Compass” post is still there, though. (Previously: Fired RadiumOne CEO Announces New Rant Targeting Platform.)
Wonder What This Means for His Klout Score?
Speaking of Gurbaksh Chahal, the former RadiumOne CEO is now a former LinkedIn Influencer as well. Sources tell Code/red that LinkedIn delisted him on Sunday, removing him from its Influencer gallery.
Much Doge. Peak Wow.
Dogecoin creator Jackson Palmer: “We need to never lose sight of the fact that this is a dog on a coin.”
How Great Would It Be if Gary Busey Did Amazon’s Next Earnings Call?
Amazon’s latest ad for Fire TV, “Talking to Things With Gary Busey,” clocks in at 15 magically Buseyian minutes. “There’s a power of talking to things that you don’t think talk back to you, because they do hear you. They live in a different world than you do, but they hear you and when you know they hear you, you feel better about yourself in talking to things that aren’t talking back, because then you’re giving life to everyone and everything that’s there in the room with you.”
Apple Totally High on That Reality Distortion Field Thing, Says Samsung
Apple attorney Harold McElhinny: “Bringing this lawsuit was Apple’s last choice. It’s a last option. Apple cannot simply walk away from its inventions. Apple cannot do that to the people who worked so hard on such fabulous ideas. So we are here, 37 million acts of infringement later, and we are counting on you for justice.”
Samsung attorney Bill Price: “You can’t copy something from the iPhone if it’s not in the iPhone. Samsung’s success is because of its hard work and innovation in hardware. This is a made-up case.”
And You Could Watch the New “Star Wars” on a Smartwatch for a Nickel
DreamWorks Animation CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg has a provocative prediction for the future of film distribution: Pay by the inch. The way Katzenberg sees it, the movie business’s current windowing model doesn’t capitalize on multi-platform distribution. So he suggests giving new films a short period of theatrical exclusivity after which they’re made available on screens of all shapes and sizes. “A movie will come out and you will have 17 days, that’s exactly three weekends, which is 95 percent of the revenue for 98 percent of movies,” Katzenberg said. “On the 18th day, these movies will be available everywhere ubiquitously and you will pay for the size. A movie screen will be $15. A 75-inch TV will be $4.00. A smartphone will be $1.99. … When that happens, and it will happen, it will reinvent the enterprise of movies.”
Former Nokia CEO’s Golden Parachute More of a Hot Air Balloon
If Finnish Prime Minister Jyrki Katainen thought former Nokia CEO Stephen Elop’s change-of-control clause payout was “outrageous” at $28 million, what will he say of it now? Reuters reports that Elop’s golden parachute, triggered by the sale of Nokia’s handset business to Microsoft, had swollen to $33 million by the time the deal closed, thanks to a surge in the company’s share price.