Peter Gabriel to Sledgehammer music industry Cuesongs, Peter Gabriels’ song rights company, is planning on the “genesis” of a new way of legal music listening by a partnership with Audiosocket, a music licensing and technology business here in the US. The Brit’s company, which includes music from Dido, Groove Armada and Ziggy Marley, plans to license its artists to Audiosocket, whose customers include systems like Vimeo. They hope that it will give legitimate access to music fans while simultaneously paying artists. Here’s hoping it will bring the stop-motion awesomeness of his 1987 video back into fashion.
Did you carefully compose your #IfIHadGlass entry with an eye to auctioning your loot on Ebay for a fat profit? Bad news. Google strictly forbids you from doing any such thing. Try it, and the company reserves the right to deactivate them.
Hemp Seed Round
It’s not easy being a computer programmer in Silicon Valley. Even with slides, buffets, and any other number of ridiculous amenities, the tech business can be a stressful and even physically painful endeavor (you try typing for twenty hours straight). But for many of America’s best coders, the remedy to stress is manifesting in a way bosses would probably rather not know about: they gettin hiiiiiiiigh, brah! San Jose, which is home to over 100 medical marijuana dispensaries, is seeing a noticeable uptick in the number of customers who work in tech, according to a report from Businessweek.
Guess we finally have an honest answer to the question posed by #IfIHadGlass. The Next Web reports that this very minute over at Ebay, bidding is climbing steadily upward on a product listing for what purports to be a pair of the futuristic specs. Someone who claims he was chosen as “an early adapter for Google’s upcoming release” says he’ll sell his pair (unopened and in the color of your choice) to the highest bidder.
The price has already skyrocketed from $1,500 to $15,900, proving once and for all that some people have far more money than patience or common sense.
Come on, folks: Do you really want to pull the hardware equivalent of buying a tragically busted knock-off wedding dress? This is basic stuff, like how you shouldn’t spend $200 on an “iPad” at a gas station that’s actually just a mirror.
It seems as if poor, poor Glenn Beck is the next sympathetic figure to be punished by eBay’s Machiavellian auction rules. After submerging an Obama statue in what he claimed to be a glass case of his own urine, he decided to auction the piece of “art” off, with proceeds benefitting his own charity, Mercury One. Someone actually offered $11,300 for the statue, maturely named “Obama in Pee Pee,” before eBay swooped in and shut the whole thing down.
Exit This Way
Earlier today, serial entrepreneur and investor Chris Dixon made it official. The cofounder of SiteAdvisor (acquired by McAfee) and Hunch (acquired by eBay), who invests both personally and through Founder Collective, will be decamping our fair city for sunnier shores to join Andreessen Horowitz as the Sand Hill Road powerhouse’s seventh general partner. We spoke with Mr. Dixon by phone shortly after the announcement was made to find out what it means for the many ventures he’s involved in here (like eBay’s massive new Flatiron R&D lab, which is slated to house 200 developers and data scientists).
Don’t hold your breath for an East Coast outpost, as cofounder Marc Andreessen emphasized earlier, his is a “single office firm.” In fact, based on the tenor of our questions, Amy Grady, a representative from Andreessen Horowitz who was also on the call, wanted to assure us Mr. Dixon’s hire was about more than just geography. “We didn’t hire Chris just because of New York. It’s a huge bonus, he’s obviously really tapped in, but if we find an entrepreneur with a great idea in Idaho, we’ll invest!”
Silicon Prairie, start your pitch decks.
Ebay announced two new product features today to help better position itself as a competitor to ecommerce sites like Amazon and Etsy. With Ebay Now, an iPhone app, customers are able to order things from their mobile devices and have them delivered anywhere they choose, usually within an hour. Ebay Now has been tested in San Francisco. An Ebay rep declined to elaborate on when the feature would be available in New York.
The site also announced an interface redesign to make search and browsing easier, as well as a new Pinterest-like feature called “Feed” that, as Ebay CTO Mark Carges said, “is a little like creating a newsfeed, but instead of search it offers visual shopping inspiration.” Users can follow brands, styles, bands–basically any topic aggregated on Ebay–and streamline it into a visual shopping board, a lot like Pinterest, where they can easily click through and purchase items with a seamlessly integrated Ebay-Paypal account.
Microsoft “accidentally” sent a DMCA takedown notice to Google, asking them to remove pages from TechCrunch, the BBC, Wikipedia and the U.S. Government. Psst… no one cares that much about Windows 8. [TorrentFreak]
Companies are using patents to stifle innovation and the Times is ON IT. [New York Times]
Is EBay staging a pivot? [TechCrunch]
Whoa, you can raise money for a company without Kickstarter? Mind blown. [TechCrunch]
Jack Dorsey apparently got pushed to a backseat role at Twitter because he’s “difficult” to work with. [SiliconBeat]
Speaking of Twitter, who knew CEO Dick Costolo used to be a standup comedian? [New York Times]
The government of Germany is urging citizens to stop using Internet Explorer–at least until a security hole you could drive a Volkswagen through is fixed. But who goes back to IE once they’ve switched, even for a couple of days? [Reuters]
If you must patent troll, it’s important to get a few basic technological details correct. GitHub and Rackspace are different entities. [Wired]
It’s official–tech companies including Amazon, Yahoo, and Facebook are joining forces to form The Internet Association, their very own lobbying shop. [TNW]
Do not shell out $1,600 on eBay just to have the iPhone 5 a few days early. That would make you a chump. [CNET]
A visit to the Ace Hotel: “‘I’m just trying to figure out who those people are and do they have jobs,’ said Chip Morrow, a lawyer from Memphis, staying at the hotel while trying a prescription drug case. ‘I mean, I see laptops everywhere but I can’t figure out what everybody’s doing.’” [Marketplace]
eBay announced on its blog today that it has acquired Svpply, the NYC-based social shopping site that curates personalized collections of clothing and products. Located on Broome Street in Soho, Svpply raised $550,000 in seed funding back in 2010 from investors like Founders Collective, Spark Capital, SV Angel, Dennis Crowley and Jason Hirschhorn. Since then, Svpply has been bootstrapping itself to 620,000 product views per week and 140,000 registered members (as of May).
Last May, founder Ben Pieratt offered a candid perspective on first-time entrepreneurship, admitting his vulnerability. ”I have zero experience or expertise in building a company,” he wrote in a 2011 blog post. “So I’m learning on the fly.”