The AT&T/Time Warner Trial

Trump’s Justice Department goes to court this week to block the merger of AT&T and Time Warner on “anti-competition concerns.” Like most of the things that come out of this administration, this is a joke. HBO has 54 million subscribers and spent $2bn on new content last year. My friend Pat Keane tweeted this out last month: And what about Amazon? With 80mm global Prime subscribers, they are maybe the biggest threat of them all This trial is a joke. A waste of taxpayers money. All because our loser President hates CNN. Ugh.

Your Data Is My Data

This piece in Recode explains that Cambridge Analytica built an app that 270,000 people used to amass profiles on 50 million people. That’s not very surprising because we are talking about networks here. This is a network graph that my colleague Jacqueline made of my twitter network a few years ago: In our online life, we are connected to a huge number of people. If I get access to your email inbox, I am going to see emails with thousands of people. Which is what makes this privacy/data sovereignty stuff so important. When your data is taken without your knowledge/permission, it is not just your data that is taken. It is the data of thousands of other people, often the people closest to you. That sucks. This is one of the many reasons I am hopeful about an Internet 3.0, a decentralized system with data security and integrity at
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Slideshow Of The Week: Why Tokens Are Fundamental

This weekend I am going with a slideshow instead of a video or audio embed. Some of my colleagues at USV have been spending a lot of time with regulators, elected officials, and lawyers helping all of these people understand cryptonetworks and why they are super important and need to be regulated with extra care. One of the issues that many folks get wrong is the role of tokens in these cryptonetworks. For many reasons, not the least of which being the speculative frenzy surrounding cryptotokens, regulators and others simply see tokens as financial instruments and want to regulate them as such. So my colleague Nick put together this deck to explain the “centrality” of cryptotokens to the operation of cryptonetworks. He published it on his blog earlier this week. I am republishing it here. I would encourage everyone to hit the [ ] icon and read this in full
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The Coinbase Tax Center

Our portfolio company Coinbase launched some much needed tax tools this week. I used them today to calculate our gains in 2017 and send the reports to our accountants. The Coinbase tax center is here. The tools look like this: I generated all of those reports just now and sent them to my accountant so we can report the 2017 gains on our returns. Sadly in 2015 and 2016, we had no gains. Some small losses which might offset a few of the 2017 gains, but not much. 2017, on the other hand, was a material year for us. The BCH fork generated real value and we sold some of that. We will be paying taxes on that shortly. I tell you all of this because gains and losses on crypto trading is taxable income and you should declare it and pay the taxes. That’s the law and it is
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The VC/Company Relationship

When I got into the VC business in the early 80s, the VC/Company relationship was pretty different than it is now. Capital was hard to come by, VCs commanded terms that would be laughed at today, and once they had made the investment, VCs acted as if they owned the Company (they sometimes did). The VC/Company relationship was a lot more like the current PE business than the current VC business. Back then VCs thought their customers were their Limited Partners. They would put on lavish annual meetings, treating their investors to three day events at resorts and such. Capital was hard to come by for VCs too and so they worked hard to earn the favor of the capital suppliers. All of that changed, starting in the 90s, when capital became very easy to come by in the first Internet boom. When we started Flatiron Partners in the mid
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The Stack Overflow Developer Survey 2018

Every year our portfolio company Stack Overflow surveys its developer community and publishes the results. This year Stack had over 100,000 respondents to its survey from all over the world, making this survey possibly the most comprehensive view of the global software developer community. There is a ton of data here. It’s a 30 minute survey. You can see the results here. But since many of you won’t click that link, here are some highlights from it: First, we know that software engineering is a largely white male profession. The data shows that: If we look at the gender and racial/ethnic mix of the students who answered the question, there is some promising data on racial/ethnic diversity, but less promising data on gender diversity. Efforts like I blogged about yesterday are badly needed to change these numbers. I found the technology questions interesting. Javascript is by far the most common
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