Twitter battles all things ElonJet, SBF gets arrested, and OpenAI tries to figure out watermarking • TechCrunch
Hello, hello! Greg here again with Week in Review, the newsletter where we quickly recap the most read TechCrunch stories from the past seven days. Been too busy to read tech news? WiR should leave you with a pretty good idea of what people were reading/talking/tweeting about.
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Twitter vs. ElonJet: Another wild one at Twitter this week. First came the news that @ElonJet, an account that tracked the whereabouts of Elon’s private jet, had been suspended. Then the official account of Twitter-competitor Mastodon got suspended (with links to Mastodon flagged as “potentially harmful”) shortly after posting about said jet trackers. Then a bunch of tech reporters all got suspended, at least some of whom had been tweeting about the jet tracker ordeal. And then — yes, there’s more! — Elon joined a Twitter Space that featured a handful of said suspended reporters (with Twitter Spaces seemingly not recognizing/respecting the suspensions); after a few minutes of questions, Elon left the session and the entire Twitter Spaces feature was taken offline.
SBF arrested: Sam Bankman-Fried, founder of the FTX cryptocurrency exchange/Gordian knot that exploded oh-so-dramatically over the last few months, was arrested in the Bahamas this week. Shortly thereafter, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission announced that it was officially charging SBF with defrauding investors, with investigations on other charges underway.
OpenAI wants to watermark the stuff its AI writes: “Did a human write that, or ChatGPT?” Kyle Wiggers asks. “It can be hard to tell — perhaps too hard, its creator OpenAI thinks, which is why it is working on a way to ‘watermark’ AI-generated content.”
NSA warns of exploits in popular networking gear: “The U.S. National Security Agency is warning that Chinese government-backed hackers are exploiting a zero-day vulnerability in two widely used Citrix networking products,” writes Carly Page. The flaw, which Citrix confirms is being actively exploited, allows hackers to run malicious code on devices often found in enterprise networks.
iOS 16.2: This week Apple shipped out the latest version of iOS, and Ivan Mehta took a look at some of its best features, from end-to-end encryption of more iCloud data, a karaoke mode for Apple Music, and the public rollout of the “infinite whiteboard” collaboration app, Freeform.
Instagram gets text-only posts: Ever wished you could post to Instagram without having to take a picture? No? Me neither. But Instagram added a text-centric option this week, and it’s at least proving popular enough to crack our top posts list — or, more likely, people are googling what the heck this new Instagram “Notes” thing is and landing on our site. Whatever the case, they kinda remind me of old-school AIM status messages — they’re short, ephemeral updates that live in your DMs rather than the main feed (see image below.)
The Equity crew may not be clairvoyant, but they are very, very smart — and this week, after a few absurdly unpredictable years, they dared to make some predictions about 2023. The Found podcast, meanwhile, chatted with Tiny Health founder Cheryl Sew Hoy about the importance of the gut microbiome — particularly in how having a good gut microbiome as an infant can help prevent chronic health issues down the road.
TC+ is the premium, members-only section of the site where we get to step away from the news cycle and go a bit deeper on some of the stuff our readers tell us they like most. Here’s what TC+ members were reading most this week:
The one slide 99% of founders get wrong: Between his time as a reporter, a VC, and a startup pitch coach, Haje has looked at more pitch decks than just about anyone I know. The most common mistake he sees? It’s all about “the ask.”
How much money should you raise for your startup?: It’s a Haje double feature this week, with his second most popular post touching on an all-too-common question: When it’s time to raise money for a startup, how much is the right amount?