The Year Observed

Oh, Snapchat! And 2013’s Other Tech Winners and Losers

Buddies! Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer and Tumblr founder David Karp. (Photo: EMMANUEL DUNAND/AFP/Getty Images)

Snapchat’s Staying Power

Despite being a picture-messaging app whose missives disappear in seconds, Snapchat made clear that it wants to stay on the tech scene for years to come.

Invented by fraternity brothers at Stanford University in 2011, the start-up is still profitless, but it hasn’t lacked for buzz in 2013—or controversy. In February, Snapchat achieved the ultimate start-up status symbol by being embroiled in a lawsuit by a spurned frenemy named Reggie Brown. He claimed that founders Evan Spiegel and Bobby Murphy stole the idea from him, in a Social Network-esque lawsuit. Read More

Linkages

Booting Up: With Fab Cutting 80 More Jobs, Soon the Homegoods In Paramus Will Employ More People

Soon, this will be it. (Courtesy Fab.com)

Google said the number of user requests from government agencies has doubled in the last three years. [AllThingsD]

Fab axed another 80 employees yesterday as it continues its pivot to a Bed Bath and Beyond. [Valleywag]

Google reportedly gave Snapchat a $4 billion offer because saying big numbers is fun. [The Verge]

Under Armor scooped up app maker MapMyFitness for $150 million. [ReadWrite]

Nearly 62 percent of Reddit users read the site to get “news” thus blurring the definition of what qualifies as news. [Journalism.org]

Linkages

Booting Up: Fab Amusingly Tells Employees Not To Get ‘Distracted By the Gossip’

Hates gossip and drama. (Photo: WN)

With Fab COO Beth Ferreria leaving, the company sent an internal email telling employees not to gossip about the flailing company. It was promptly leaked. [Bloomberg]

Google Glass is making itself attractive to the music industry by unveiling new features, including streaming music, searchable playlists and saying “listening to” will boot up a song. [New York Times]

Whoa, if true: Renderings of Apple’s new California headquarters are scary looking more than anything. [Wired]

Yahoo’s head of video Erin McPherson is jumping to Maker Studios. [AllThingsD]

People are mad over tabs on Yahoo Mail. [New York Post]

Life in the Fab Lane

Bye Bye Bradford: Fab Cofounder Leaves His Day-to-Day Role

SMILE! (Photo by Stephen Lovekin/Getty Images for Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week)

Another change at Fab: Forbes reports that Bradford Shellhammer, the company’s character of a cofounder, is leaving his day-to-day role as chief designer. He’ll become a non-executive advisor.

Mr. Shellhammer sang a chipper tune on his way out the door, though. “Founding Fab was something I made in this world. And I am so very proud of that,” he wrote in a valedictory blog post, continuing: Read More

Life in the Fab Lane

Fresh Off a Fund Raise, Fab Cuts More Than 100 European Staffers

(Photo by Stephen Lovekin/Getty Images for Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week)

Fab just raised $150 million from investors including Tencent, and supposedly there’s another tranche of the Series D coming. And yet, according to AllThingsD, the company has just laid off more than a hundred of its Berlin-based employees, something like 15 percent of Fab’s total workforce, and an additional 36 are being asked to relocate to New York.

In an interview with AllThingsD, CEO Jason Goldberg spins the layoffs as part of Fab’s flash-sale-free future, swears the company is still committed to Europe and says the new investors knew this was a possibility: Read More

Linkages

Booting Up: Stylish Toddlers and Newly Minted Snapchat Millionaires

You know these girls talk shit.

Thanks to Instagram, the Internet is besieged with stylish children. [The New Republic]

Sources say that as part of their round of funding, the cofounders of Snapchat cashed out $20 million of their own shares. [Valleywag]

“If you lay down the ground rules for what working at Fab is like, people can complain, but others will defend you. It’s inconsistency that people rankle at.” [PandoDaily]

Square just launched a web marketplace targeted to small businesses. [AllThingsD]

Here is a think piece from the Associated Press, attempting to explain the selfie. [AP]

Life in the Fab Lane

Fab Cofounder Swears He’s Just Joshing With You Guys

Live Fab. JUST DO IT. (Photo by Stephen Lovekin/Getty Images for Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week)

Yesterday, Bloomberg News pulled back the hand-embroidered curtain for a look at the office culture of Fab. It sounded like quite a tense environment, with stringent rules about the quality of paper you’re supposed to use and threats to fire people over minor infractions.

Now, in response, CEO Jason Goldberg has taken to his blog (as is his wont) to refute what he calls “blatant misrepresentations.” The rebuttal doesn’t really make Fab sound any less stressful as a workplace, though. Read More