Eric Johnson

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ATD Week in Review: Facebook Gets More Twittery and Kara’s Open Letter to Jeff Bezos


Asa Mathat /

In case you missed anything, here’s a quick roundup of some of the news that powered AllThingsD this week:

  1. Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos bought the Washington Post for $250 million, saying that to chart a future for the iconic newspaper, “we will need to invent, which means we will need to experiment.” AllThingsD‘s co-executive editor Kara Swisher had more than a few thoughts about how to do that, having started her career in the Post’s mailroom: “Fusing the old-media storytelling and news-integrity values that I learned at the Post with the Internet values of speed and personality … is critical,” she wrote in an open letter to Bezos.
  2. With 31 billion messages sent and received every day, WhatsApp has connected hundreds of millions of users around the globe. And now for its next trick: Push-to-talk voice messaging.
  3. It wasn’t a great week for Samsung and the U.S. International Trade Commission: The Obama administration’s veto of a proposed import ban on multiple Apple products wiped out $1 billion of the South Korean tech giant’s market value.
  4. Then, on Friday, the ITC banned a slew of Samsung products, ruling that they had infringed on two Apple patents.
  5. Tumblr, which had raised $125 million since 2007, had $16.6 million in cash left when Yahoo bought it.
  6. In a move that brings it closer to its rival Twitter, Facebook has built a team around encouraging celebrities to post more public updates to the site. And that’s just the beginning of a push to bring more Twittery public discussion to your News Feed.
  7. CEO John Legere said T-Mobile’s message, not the arrival of the iPhone, is behind a recent surge in new customers. However, he also noted that “there’s a whole array of Apple products that we look forward to carrying.”
  8. While it has apparently already selected a new design, Yahoo aims to get consumers talking about a refresh of its classic purple logo by serving up 30 different logos in the month stretching from last week until Sept. 4.
  9. How will we interact with our computers in the future? In AllThingsD Voices, Open-Xchange CEO Rafael Laguna writes that “a Web-based desktop is the next logical progression.”
  10. Noting that the pay TV industry has been in decline for three consecutive quarters, analyst Craig Moffett says that “cord cutting used to be a myth. It isn’t anymore.

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I think the NSA has a job to do and we need the NSA. But as (physicist) Robert Oppenheimer said, “When you see something that is technically sweet, you go ahead and do it and argue about what to do about it only after you’ve had your technical success. That is the way it was with the atomic bomb.”

— Phil Zimmerman, PGP inventor and Silent Circle co-founder, in an interview with Om Malik