It's All About the Bitcoins
Yesterday the Department of Homeland Security shut down Bitcoin trading platform Mt. Gox’s ability to accept or send transfers using Dwolla, a mobile payment service. A representative from Dwolla told Betabeat that the DHS had sent them a “seizure warrant” for the account, but declined to provide further detail. Now, in the warrant, obtained by Ars Technica, the reason for the seizure has been revealed: DHS believes Mt. Gox is operating an “unlicensed money transmitting business.”
PayPal is dropping processing charges for users of its mobile payment platform in an attempt to better take on Square and Groupon. [Verge]
Google is expected to debut a competitor to Spotify later today. Which one of you asked for this? [New York Times]
This is happening: “Boost VC is launching a fund of at least $300,000, called the Boost Bitcoin Fund to invest in Bitcoin startups.” [Forbes]
Airware, a company that creates the insides of unmanned drones, is now freshly funded. Andreessen Horowitz just pumped a $10.7 million Series A funding into it. [TechCrunch]
A Blackberry BBM app is coming to iPhone and Android phones this summer if you still remember your pins. [BGR]
It's All About the Bitcoins
Update: Warrant Reveals Homeland Security Seized Mt. Gox’s Dwolla Account for ‘Unlicensed Money Transmitting’
The Department of Homeland Security appears to have shut down the ability to use Dwolla, a mobile payment service, to withdraw and deposit money into Mt. Gox, a Bitcoin trading platform. A Dwolla representative confirmed the move to Betabeat. Chris Coyne, cofounder of OKCupid, posted a screenshot of an email he received from Dwolla, stating that due to recent orders from the Department of Homeland Security, Dwolla cannot complete the bank transfer to Mt. Gox.
“New Lab” For Brooklyn Navy Yard Real estate developer Macro Sea opened the first “beta” portion of its New Lab project at the Brooklyn Navy Yard yesterday, a year ahead of schedule. The opening, which was attended by City Council Speaker and mayoral candidate Christine Quinn and Borough President Marty Markowitz, will welcome a ”first-of-its-kind advanced manufacturing hub” which will be the centerpiece of the Brooklyn Navy Yard’s 220,000 square foot Green Manufacturing Center.
Facebook is now a Fortune 500 company. [USA Today]
We still don’t know the true identity of “Satoshi Nakamoto,” the enigma who created Bitcoin. But we do know that he/she is likely filthy rich. [The Verge]
Checking in with the progress of the city’s tech campuses. [New York Daily News]
“There are many problems with the assumptions behind the “big data” narrative (above, in a reductive form) being pushed, primarily, by consultants and IT firms that want to sell businesses the next big thing.” [Quartz]
Linguists have identified a few words they say have been kicking around, in one form or another, for 15,000 years. It’s a pretty obvious list: “fire,” “mother,” “not.” [Washington Post]
It's All About the Bitcoins
You can buy Domino’s pizza and busted Mercedes convertibles and a night in a Howard Johnson’s with Bitcoin, the digital cryptocurrency that’s taken New York and beyond by storm. Now added to the roster of ridiculous things available for purchase with Internet money: a beautiful $1.9M condo in the fancy Trump SoHo building.
The bizarre tale of Google’s takeover of Provo’s fiber network is getting even weirder. The search giant billed the Utah city $500,000 to locate where the wires are hidden since the company that installed them didn’t keep proper records of where they were buried. [Ars Technica]
Matthew Keys, the beleaguered former Reuters deputy social media editor, pleaded not guilty Tuesday to charges that he conspired with Anonymous to break-in and attack websites of his former employer, Tribune. His next court date is June 12. [Huffington Post]
“Anytime I’m at a dinner or an event, social or business, people are buzzing about Tinder.” And with those words spoken, a Times profile of the dating app was born. [New York Times]
Google houses more than 1,300 colorful bikes in a warehouse near its Mountain View headquarters for employees to use because there’s no perk not offered there. Were you expecting anything less? [Wired]
PayPal said that it’s “kinda thinking about” introducing Bitcoin as a form of payment in its system. [Silicon Angle]
Former U.S. President Bill Clinton is officially on Twitter. No word if he’s #TeamFollowback. [TNW]
A Russian porn website is infecting people’s computers with malware that overtakes their systems to mine for Bitcoins. (Pretty sure that’s the most Internetty sentence in history.) PCWorld reports that the malware (called “Fareit”) has been circulating for the past six months and only affects Windows computers.
There are now 150 million Snapchats sent every day. Very few of them are sent by people older than 30. [Business Insider]
Facebook is testing ads in your Graph Search, but so far they’re not based on your searches. (So you won’t get an eHarmony ad when you search “ex-girlfriends who I still love.”) [TechCrunch]
The founder of the Silk Road–who goes by the name “Dread Pirate Roberts”–isn’t too worried about Bitcoin booms and busts. “Bitcoin’s foundation, its algorithms and network, don’t change with the exchange rate.” [Forbes]
The New York Times won a Pulitzer for investigating Apple’s business practices. [Pulitzer]
Meanwhile, Funny or Die has released iSteve, its very own movie about Steve Jobs. [Funny or Die]
Love in the Time of Algorithms
Good news, singletons: you can now spend your Bitcoins to help you get laid. OKCupid has begun accepting the popular decentralized digital currency as a form of payment. Payments will be accepted via Bitcoin wallet website Coinbase, according to an announcement on its blog.
Betabeat first reported two weeks ago that the IAC-backed site was considering accepting Bitcoins after a Reddit user posted a screenshot from an alleged OKCupid representative claiming that the company was looking to expand its payment options.