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Happy Friday! Join us in wishing Lawrence a very warm welcome to the team! You will join our team of cybersecurity experts, working alongside Zack and Carly. He just published his first article on TC, about T-Mobile reporting that a hacker accessed the personal data of 37 million customers. Welcome aboard!!
TechCrunch Top 3
- Alphabet spells out layoffs: With all the talk about tech layoffs in the last two months, it was only a matter of time before we saw something from Google parent company Alphabet. The search engine giant announced that it was cutting 6% of its workforce, impacting 12,000 people. And like the others, CEO Sundar Pichai took his turn to explain how the company “hired for a different economic reality.” Pablo writes
- game out: Given that gaming is as popular as it is, this upcoming layoff story is a bit of a surprise, though not totally unexpected, as media companies are taking a huge hit. Entertainment company Fandom, which publishes content under Giant Bomb, GameSpot and Metacritic, laid off roughly 10% of its staff at those publications. Ivan reports.
- It’s all about the money, money, money: Social media influencers in India have to disclose promotional content, also known as paid promotions, to the government, and now the Department of Consumer Affairs has released some guidelines on how to do it. jag reunion has more.
Startups and VCs
A $32 million seed round for Chris DeWolfe’s newest gaming company may seem like a throwback to bubbly times, like… 2021. But that’s what PLAI Labs just raised in a deal led by Andreessen Horowitz (a16z). , reports Conny. She notes that’s a lot of money in a volatile market, even coming from two separate a16z funds: the firm’s $600 million debut gaming vehicle and its $4.5 billion crypto fund, both announced last May.
Here’s another handful for you:
4 investors discuss the next big wave of alternative seafood startups
There’s a lot of hype surrounding plant-based burgers and nuggets, but alternative seafood is garnering more attention and funding from investors these days.
“More than $178 million was invested in alternative seafood in the first half of 2022, and the market value is poised to reach $1.6 billion in the next 10 years,” he reports.
To learn more about this maturing space, Christine Hall surveyed four investors to learn their views on regulation, the “unique challenges” companies face when trying to scale, and how they approach growth and risk:
- Kate Danaher, Managing Director of Oceans and Seafood, S2G Ventures
- Friederike Grosse-Holz, Director, Blue Horizon
- Christian Lim, Managing Director, Blue Ocean at SWEN Capital Partners
- Amy Novogratz, Co-Founder and Managing Partner, Aqua Spark
Three more from the TC+ team:
TechCrunch+ is our membership program that helps start-up founders and teams get ahead of the rest. You can sign up here. Use code “DC” to get 15% off an annual subscription!
big tech inc
Okay, no more layoff talk. Let’s have some fun, because it’s Friday, dammit!
Are you still playing Wordle? Or maybe you switched to his Quordle clone. Well, Quordle was acquired by Merriam-Webster, Pablo reports. If you’ve never tried it, Quordle is similar to the basic concept of Wordle, guessing a word in a certain number of guesses, except there are four five-letter words to guess at once, with only nine guesses. It may be just what you need to warm you up on a cold winter night.
Here are four more for you to enjoy on Friday:
- Your turn: amanda writes that after weeks of backlash and protest from content creators and fans, the publisher of Dungeons & Dragons made the decision to put the game under a Creative Commons license.
- an abrupt goodbye: After recently cutting off third-party clients, including Tweetbot and Twitterific, Twitter went ahead and officially banned them. Kyle writes
- ICYMI: Netflix founder Reed Hastings has resigned as co-CEO but will remain on the board. Taylor writes Meanwhile, Netflix is looking at free streaming “FAST” channels as a possibility to grow its ad business. lauren reports.
- up, up and away: What darrell writes, Canada is rising from the sidelines and joining the space race, saying it wants to support commercial space launches.