For the longest time, we’ve been trying to call Facebook to do business with them and there’s nobody to pick up the call. They’re very focused on the consumer experience, and less focused on revenue and working with advertisers.Tribal DDB co-president of U.S. operations of Mike Parker • Discussing a sudden problem Facebook has — they have big ticket advertisers that want to do business with them, but they can’t even get the social network on the phone. The problem is that big-ticket advertisers want more hand-holding than a self-service ad system is willing to give, and Facebook isn’t really designed for that right now. (To be fair, Google wasn’t for years, either.) If those advertisers would like, we hear Tumblr’s ad strategy is designed for these kinds of companies.
» Portfolio includes Facebook, Skype, Instagram, Zynga: Netscape co-founder Marc Andreessen’s Andreessen Horowitz, which in just three years has become one of Silicon Valley’s best-known venture capital firms, plans to take some of its expected future profits and put them to the good of the world at large. While the firm isn’t at the point where it has massive profits yet, considering it’s had at least two major buyouts already — Skype to Microsoft and Instagram to Facebook — their track record is looking solid and the end result of the firm’s work could mean tens of millions going to charity, at least. The six partners don’t have a set timetable or preferred non-profits in mind, but we suggest the one that made this video as a starting point.
» That’s quite a deal for Kevin Systrom and company, considering the government will likely be monitoring a deal of this magnitude. According to an updated S-1 filing, Facebook has already paid $300 million to Instagram and agreed to pay a $200 million “termination fee” if any government agency blocks the planned buy-out. While it’s certainly not the same as a billion dollars, we imagine that the Instagram staff can sleep soundly knowing that they’ll all be millionaires no matter what. But, with that said, we’d be willing to bet that Facebook’s board of directors would have liked to have known about this little detail.
Facebook’s Board of Directors were never included in negotiations for the company’s purchase of Instagram, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal. The paper claims CEO Mark Zuckerberg spent three days hashing out details of the sale with Instagram founder and CEO Kevin Systrom personally, fearing that the involvement of lawyers would scare him away from the sale. Although Facebook’s board was given a chance to vote on the purchase, sources close to the company say that it was a largely-symbolic one. Zuckerberg owns a majority of the voting rights. He can do that. source
» The key word here is “purported.” Critics of SOPA alleged that the text of the bill was too draconian, and would have allowed for shutting down entire websites for questionable infractions (for example, linking to a message board with a comment that directed users to a site with copyrighted material). Opposition to CISPA, however, comes due to privacy concerns: Critics say the bill allows private companies (such as Facebook and Microsoft which opposed SOPA but support CISPA) to exchange personal information and private data with the government a bit too easily. We’ve still got to delve into the nitty-gritty here, but we recommend you seek out a few different takes on the legislation. TechDirt and Geekosystem are both opposed, GigaOm is so-so, and Lifehacker has a nice rundown as to why Facebook and Microsoft opposed SOPA but support CISPA.
Maryland is set to become the first state to ban employers from requesting the Facebook account information of current or potential employees. The Senate passed the new measure unanimously, with overwhelming majority support in the House as well, and lawmakers managed to squeeze the finalized bill in just before the end of the current legislative session. Now the bill heads to the desk of Governor Martin O’Malley. source
One of the perks of being an early employee...
Over the last 90 days, the Digg...
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» A sad subtext: The company that made one of the cameras that inspired Instagram’s square shape is so broke that they have to ask a court for permission to pay out bonuses to 300 key employees. Meanwhile, Instagram has right around a dozen people who are receiving cash and stock from a company likely to have the biggest IPO in history. With its direct visual inspiration struggling, Instagram is now worth 12 Kodaks. If there was a more perfect display of the concept of “creative destruction,” we haven’t seen it. (thanks Philip Bump)
My face appears in the image uploaded to the article. And I made a comment on the story. And so now these dumb lawyers are coming after me.TechCrunch commenter Rick Stratton • Discussing how the comment “Hey I finally made it onto TechCrunch” turned him into a target for Facebook’s lawyers. Stratton received a four-page letter from Facebook’s legal team for that and a Facebook screenshot that featured Stratton in a story about Defaceable, a Chrome browser extension that allows users to comment anonymously on any site using Facebook Comments. When Facebook mobilized their legal team to deal with Defaceable, Rick was accused of working with the development team. Now he’s doing everything he can to prove that he’s just another guy on the web. source (via • follow)