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Archivo del Autor: Belen De Leon

Google Doodle serenades I Love Lucy's Desi Arnaz – CNET

Cuban-born entertainer honored for helping reshape sitcom TV as we know it today.
Source: CNET

Facebook, Instagram sue China-based firms over sales of fake accounts – CNET

The federal lawsuit alleges that four companies and three people in China illegally used Facebook and Instagram’s trademark.
Source: CNET

Equity Shot: Lyft files to go public and we’re stoked

Hello and welcome to an Equity Shot, a short-form episode of the show where we dive into a single breaking news story. Guess what we’re talking about today?! It’s Lyft . You guessed correctly.

The Lyft S-1 is the very first major S-1 event of 2019. As you might recall, the government shutdown gummed the IPO process by halting the Securities and Exchange Commission, an agency that plays the most active role in helping a company go public. Now the government is open, and Lyft’s formerly private filing is now a public filing.

You can read Kate’s deep dive here or mine here, but what follows is an overview of what we chatted about on the show. Here’s the SEC filing if you want to follow along.

Up top are revenue and growth. Lyft’s revenue grew from $1.06 billion to nearly $2.2 billion from 2017 to 2018. That’s impressive.

Next is costs. Lyft’s costs rose dramatically during 2018, compared to the year prior. In fact, Lyft’s total cost profile rose from $1.77 billion in 2017 to a staggering $3.13 billion in 2018. That’s a lot, and each figure is far higher than its revenue.

Which lead us to losses. Sure those revenue numbers look hot, but Lyft, at the same time, lost $911 million on 2018 revenue and $688 million the previous year. Though, as Alex points out, that ratio is improving, pointing to a positive (maybe even profitable???) future for Lyft.

However, while the S-1 had its ups and downs, two data points stood out that weren’t GAAP, but did make us appreciate Lyft’s work a bit more. As we explain, Lyft’s share of bookings (total value of services) from its platform is rising as is its revenue-per-rider. Those bode well for the future, too.

We closed the episode with some chatter on Lyft’s plan to reward its drivers. The business is helping drivers — the core of its business — earn a piece of that tasty IPO pie with a $10,000 bonus. TechCrunch’s Megan Rose Dickey has more on that here. Plus, we’d have been remiss not to discuss Lyft’s scooter play, which it apparently spent $60 million on last year.

All that and we got an S-1 done. Let’s have a few more, and quickly.

Equity drops every Friday at 6:00 am PT, so subscribe to us on Apple PodcastsOvercast, Pocket Casts, Downcast and all the casts.


Source: TechCrunch

Facebook sues four Chinese companies over trademark infringement

Facebook is taking legal action against a cluster of Chinese websites that sell fake accounts, likes and followers both on Facebook itself and on Instagram. The company announced the legal action in a short blog post late Friday afternoon (a move unusual enough to pique our curiosity a little). Of course, the fact that Facebook isn’t allowed in China might be a complexifier, in Bezos-speak.

The lawsuit, filed with the Northern District of California, alleges that starting in 2017 four Chinese companies and three individuals based in China “operated a series of websites promoting the sale of fake accounts (e.g. using fake names or other false identifiers) and inauthentic accounts (e.g. used for inauthentic activity),” infringing on Facebook and Instagram’s trademarks and terms of service in the process.

The lawsuit names Xiu Network Science and Technology Company, Xiu Feishu Science and Technology Company, Xiufei Book Technology Co., Home Network (Fujian) Technology Co., Ltd. and three people affiliated with those operations. TechCrunch reached out to Facebook for clarification about the scope of the fraudulent activity and the reason behind its decision to escalate these concerns, though didn’t receive much clarification.

Trademark infringement is certainly nothing new for the biggest social network on the planet, so our guess is that the activity must have been on a fairly large scale to attract Facebook’s legal ire. The company is asking for $100,000 in damages each for six websites it lists in the complaint for trademark infringement, terms of service violations and cybersquatting domains using its name. At the time of writing, the domains in question mostly still appeared online and operational — another factor that may have contributed to Facebook’s choice to pursue legal action. Some of the websites also sell accounts for services from Google, Twitter other American tech companies.

As Facebook notes in the filing, “According to their websites, these Defendants… engage in the registration and sale of accounts, in bulk, for various social networking sites.” When we looked into one of the websites, 9xiufacebook.com, we found that most people discovered it through a Chinese web search for “Facebook account purchase.”

The court filing is embedded below.


Source: TechCrunch

Laurene Powell Jobs invests in journalism because she's worried about democracy – CNET

Steve Jobs’ widow, who runs the influential Emerson Collective, sees news as a civic good.
Source: CNET

NEA is raising its biggest fund ever – – again

New Enterprise Associates, the 41-year-old venture firm with offices in Menlo Park; San Francisco; Boston; New York; Chevy Chase, Md.; and Washington, D.C., is raising its biggest fund ever, shows a new SEC filing that shows target of $3.6 billion.

The fund, its seventeenth, is just slightly bigger than the $3.3 billion fund the firm closed in 2017, which was its biggest fund at the time. Indeed, NEA has been known for many years for raising among the biggest funds in the industry, though these once brow-raising amounts have become somewhat less remarkable in a world where venture firms routinely close on record-breaking pools of capital.

It wasn’t always that way. NEA closed its very first fund with $16 million in 1978. It has since come to manage more than $18 billion in assets altogether.

The filing lists the firm’s 10 general partners, including Scott Sandell, who became the sole managing general partner of NEA in 2017. The other nine include Forest Baskett, Tony Florence, Mo Makhzoumi, Joshua Makower, David Mott, Pete Sonsini, and Paul Walker, along with Carmen Chang, who heads up the firm’s Asia practice and was promoted to GP last year, and Ali Behbahani, a healthcare investor who was also promoted to GP last year.

NEA, which has both a giant technology and healthcare practice, also has a vast network of partners, including Jonathan Golden, a former director of product at Airbnb who joined the firm last summer and who joined us for TC’s “Equity” podcast just yesterday.

Unlike some firms that have had something of a star system at various points of their firm’s history – – think Jim Breyer during an earlier era at Accel or the celebrity that John Doerr of Kleiner Perkins long enjoyed —  NEA has always operated in a less public-facing way despite its immense reach into the startup industry. According to Pitchbook, it has made more than 2,100 investments over the last four decades and has 431 active portfolio companies.

In February alone, its portfolio company ThirdLove, the lingerie maker, announced $55 million in fresh funding. NEA also joined the $93 million Series B round for Oyster Point Pharma, a 3.5-year-old, Princeton, N.J.-based clinical-stage pharmaceutical company with an initial focus on developing novel therapies to treat dry eyes. And it wrote a follow-on check to Databricks, a 5.5-year-old, San Francisco-based company founded by the original team behind the Apache Spark big data analytics engine, which closed on $250 million in Series E funding.

NEA completed a spinout of a new fund called NewView Capital last year, closing it with $1.35 billion, including from Goldman Sachs and the fund of funds firm Hamilton Lane.

As of early December, the firm — which is being led by former NEA general partner Ravi Viswanathan — held stakes in 31 of NEA’s late-stage portfolio companies that aren’t ready to go public or exit but that NEA wanted to find a way to continue supporting while also providing some liquidity to its investors. TC has more on that effort here.


Source: TechCrunch

Ava Duvernay releases the first trailer for her Netflix series about the Central Park Five

Celebrated director Ava DuVernay has released a harrowing first teaser trailer for her highly anticipated Netflix series about the Central Park rape case from the 1980s.

The true story of the five African American and Hispanic teens who were wrongfully accused and convicted of the rape of a jogger in Central Park made headlines in 1989 in the wake of the attack and over the course of the subsequent trial.

Now, with When They See Us, DuVernay will tell the stories of Anton McCray, Kevin Richardson, Yusef Salaam, Raymond Santana and Korey Wise, who were accused of the rape and assault of Trisha Ellen Meili in the spring of 1989.

In development since 2017, the five-part series will cover the 25 years from their trial and conviction to their exoneration and the $41 million settlement they received from New York City.

The cast for the Netflix series includes Vera Farmiga, Felicity Huffman, John Leguizamo, Niecy Nash, and Michelle Williams. Producers on the show include Oprah Winfrey and Robert De Niro.

CNET Asks: Do you want a wearable smartphone? – CNET

If so, you may be in luck. Although it may be wise to wait.
Source: CNET

Facebook content moderation is an ugly business. Here's who does it – CNET

Content moderators protect Facebook’s 2.3 billion members. Who protects them?
Source: CNET

Facebook faces complaints from more former content moderators in lawsuit – CNET

The contract workers say repeated exposure to violent images caused significant psychological harm.
Source: CNET

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