Several dozen tech companies, including Google, Apple and Facebook, are jointly publishing a letter calling on the NSA to be more transparent. [AllThingsD]
Verizon’s raked in $30 billion in revenue and added 1 million in new subscribers in the second quarter if you were worried about them. [USA Today]
Ouya is embarking on a new $1 million Kickstarter campaign. The Android-powered gaming console will match donations between $50,000 and $250,000 but developers who accept the money must make their games exclusive to Ouya for six months. [The Verge]
Lonely Planet is laying off several employees across the world and shifting its digital offices from Melbourne, Australia to bucolic Nashville. [Skift]
More people are supposedly watching old television series, like Mad Men, than Netflix’s original programs such as House of Cards. [Wall Street Journal]
Some true American heroes have invented mini-diapers with which males can swaddle their bell-ends. The only issue is that the inventors are totally joking.
Comedy troupe Above Average created a YouTube video advertising “Tiny Diapers: For the Tip of Your Penis” as part of its Thingstarter series mocking Kickstarter vids.
XXX in Tech
Apparently “Kickstarter but for porn” is the new “Netflix for [insert noun here].” Another new crowd-funded website aimed at libidinous content creators looking to craft their own DIY porn launched today. It’s called Fan Fund XXX (NSFW if the XXX didn’t alert you) and it only has three projects listed so far, including a porn parody of the movie Saw.
In a post published to the Kickstarter blog today, the New York-based crowdfunding platform wrote that it was “wrong” to allow a controversial dating book published by a Redditor to collect funded on Kickstarter. The book, which many have called a “rape manual,” included several passages that suggested men make unwanted advances on women, though its creator insists the quotes were taken out of context.
The book, to be published by Redditor Ken Hoinsky, raised over $16,000 on Kickstarter. Despite calling it “abhorrent,” Kickstarter initially declined to remove it, stating that “the material on Reddit did not warrant the irreversible action of canceling the project.”
In a statement provided to Betabeat, the powers that be at Kickstarter announced that they will not be taking down the project for Redditor Ken Hoinsky’s dating advice book, which contains unsettling suggestions for how to treat women, including “grab her hand and put it right on your dick.” The book, called Above the Game: A Guide to Getting Awesome With Women, far surpassed its Kickstarter funding goal and promises to compile much of the dating advice the prolific Mr. Hoinsky has published to Reddit over the years.
Love in the Time of Algorithms
Update: Kickstarter has decided not to remove the project.
Are you a foreveralone munching on Cheetos in your mom’s basement, wondering how to get women to touch your penis? Good news: Ken Hoinsky, whom you might know as “TofuTofu” on Reddit, has drawn up a comprehensive dating guide to help teach guys everywhere how to “get awesome with women”–and also make creepy unwanted advances on them.
If you think the products on Kickstarter were terrible, just wait until you see how Microsoft completely ruined (disrupted?) the crowdsourcing paradigm.
Introducing Chip In, a program from the computer giant that lets college students amass donations from people that go toward the purchase of a shiny, new PC. Microsoft said it will ~chip in~ 10 percent of the price on “select” (read: Acer) PCs.
Looks like we’re going to have to come up with another description for inventor Nikola Tesla, besides “under-appreciated.” Plans for a museum at Wardenclyffe are well under way, and now a Kickstarter project has raised $127,260 to build a life-sized bronze monument to the man smack in the middle of Silicon Valley.
What, no colossus?
The project is the brainchild of Dorrian Porter, who discovered Nikola Tesla four years ago thanks to a Google doodle. The statue will be parked in front of a Palo Alto office building, and it will hold a time capsule to be opened in 2043. Also included: a Wifi hotspot!
Zosia Mamet made a Kickstarter campaign to fund a pretentious folksy music video, and so far, nobody’s giving her any money.
Outside of Girls, Ms. Mamet performs with her sister, Clara, in a folk duo called “The Cabin Sisters.” Apparently, the band produces a “unique brand of folk via body percussion, banjo and harmonies.” (Maybe they could team up with Allison Williams on a banjo version of a Kanye album?)
Apple CEO Tim Cook is preparing for his upcoming Congress appearance about corporate tax code by promising a “dramatic simplification” of the ancient laws. [Washington Post]
It’s been a year since Facebook’s IPO. So let’s celebrate it with a ~one year later~ reflection piece. [WSJ]
Remember when you’re complaining about your long work week, it’s way worse for Foxconn employees. [NYT]
It sounds like the Facebook designers behind News Feed’s redesign were having the chillest of times on the project. They brought in lamps to create a “nice living room” and stared at posters on the wall to keep them motivated. [Taxi]
Ugh, we have some disturbing news: A website that bills itself as “Kickstarter for gigs” has launched in London. [BBC]