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Good Friday! Join us to like us Lorenzo A very warm welcome to the team! He is joining our team of cybersecurity journalists, working alongside Zack and Carly. He just published his first article on TC, about T-Mobile reporting that a hacker accessed personal data of 37 million customers. Welcome aboard!!
Enjoy your weekend! — Christine and Hello
The TechCrunch Top 3
- The alphabet explains the redundancies: With all that talk about tech layoffs in the last few months, it was only a matter of time before we saw something from Google’s parent, Alphabet. The search engine giant announced it was cutting 6% of its workforce, affecting 12,000 people. And like the others, CEO Sundar Pichai took his turn to explain how the company “engaged for a different economic reality,” Paul he writes.
- Game off: With gaming being as popular as it is, this next layoff story is a bit of a surprise, though not totally unexpected since media companies are being hit hard. Entertainment company Fandom, which publishes content under Giant Bomb, GameSpot and Metacritic, has laid off about 10% of its staff at those publications, Ivan reports.
- It’s all about 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 issued some guidelines on how to do it. Jagmeet she has more.
Startups and VC
A $32 million seed round for Chris DeWolfe’s newest gaming company might seem like a throwback to frothier times, like … 2021. But that’s how much PLAI Labs just raised in a deal led by Andreessen Horowitz (a16z), reports Connie. She points out that’s a lot of moolah in a volatile market, even coming as it does from two separate a16z funds: the firm’s $600 million debut gaming vehicle and its $4.5 billion crypto fund, both of which were announced last May.
Here’s a little more for you:
4 investors discuss the next big wave for alternative seafood startups
There’s a lot of hype around plant-based burgers and nuggets, but alternative seafood products are getting more attention — and funding — from investors these days.
“More than $178 million was pumped into alternative seafood in the first half of 2022, and the market value is poised to reach $1.6 billion over the next 10 years,” it reports.
To learn more about this maturing space, Christine Hall surveyed four investors to get their thoughts on regulation, the “unique challenges” companies face as they try to scale, and how approaching 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 of SWEN Capital Partners
- Amy Novogratz, co-founder and managing partner, Aqua Spark
Three more from the TC+ team:
TechCrunch+ is our partnership program that helps founders and startup teams to take advantage of the package. You can sign up here. Use the code “DC” for a 15% discount on an annual subscription!
Big Tech Inc.
Well, no more talk of layoffs. We’re going to have fun, because it’s Friday, damn it!
Are you still playing Wordle? Or maybe you switched to his clone Quordle. Also, Quordle was acquired by Merriam-Webster, Paul reports. If you have never tried, Quordle is similar to the basic concept of Wordle, guessing a word in a certain amount of attempts, except that there are four words of five letters to guess at once, with only nine trials. It could be just the thing to warm you up on a cold winter’s night.
Here are four more for your Friday enjoyment:
- It’s your turn: Amanda writes that after weeks of backlash and protest from content creators and fans, the publisher of Dungeons & Dragons has made the decision to place the game under a Creative Commons license.
- A sudden farewell: After recently shutting down third-party clients, including Tweetbot and Twitterific, Twitter has gone ahead and officially banned them, Kyle he writes.
- ICYMI: Netflix founder Reed Hastings has stepped down as co-CEO but will remain on the board, Taylor he writes. Meanwhile, Netflix is looking at free streaming “FAST” channels as a possibility to grow its ad business, Lauren reports.
- Up, up, and away: How Darrell he writes, Canada is rising from the sidelines and joining the space race, saying it wants to support commercial space launches.