The New York Times
Following a week of rumors and speculation, it appears as though Andrew Mason will remain CEO of Groupon for the time being. “For now, it appears, Mr. Mason isn’t going anywhere,” The New York Times’ Dealbook blog reports. Coming out of a board meeting on Thursday, a Groupon spokesman told DealBook that the board and the management team were presently “aligned.”
The Wall Street Journal
With Google’s future at stake, top U.S. and European antitrust officials leading separate probes of the search giant reportedly plan on meeting in Europe, next week. What’s more, “The FTC and Google currently are engaged in settlement talks,” The Wall Street Journal reporting, citing sources. The FTC and the European Commission have been investigating whether Google abused its search dominance search to favor its own services at the expense of rivals.
GigaOm has dug up some details on Redbox Instant by Verizon, the online video joint venture expected to launch before year’s end. “Subscriptions start at $6 a month, which gives users unlimited access to the service’s subscription video catalog,” it reports. “That catalog is expected to be much smaller than Netflix’s, but it includes some titles also offered by the competitor, including Killers, Rango, Iron Man 2 and Thor.”
In yet more bad news for Zynga, the online game maker has conceded to new, less preferential partnership terms with Facebook. The agreement, detailed in regulatory filings released Thursday, “is seen as a move by Facebook to level the playing field between Zygna and other game makers the social network is trying to attract,” Reuters reports.
Groupon CEO Andrew Mason is responding to reports that the company’s board wants him out. As Henry Blodget writes in Business Insider, “Mason said he would fire himself if he didn't think he was the right guy for the job.” What’s more, “He also said that he cares a lot more about the success of the business than he does about any particular role at the company.”
In an interview, Mike Vernal, Facebook’s director of engineering, tells Wired about the social network’s big plans for the New Year. For starters, “The social network is trying to pump up user posts, favoring longer stories and content and adding data that will help Facebook and its partners repurpose even the simplest status updates.”
From Microsoft to Apple, top tech companies and the White House are at odds over an immigration reform bill, which would let U.S.-educated computer programmers and engineers remain in the country. As CNet reports, the current administration sees the bill as a "narrowly tailored proposal," which fails to "meet the president's long-term objectives with respect to comprehensive immigration reform."
It would be a stretch to say there are no hard feelings between Yelp CEO Jeremy Stoppelman and Google (which famously tried to acquire Yelp in 2009). "If you happen to be the gateway for the vast majority of users on the Internet and you restrict information and put your house property ahead of everyone else, you potentially harm consumers," Stoppelman said at a conference, this week.
All Things D
Groupon’s board of directors is reportedly wrestling with the idea of pushing out cofounder and CEO Andrew Mason. “A move to replace Mason is not likely to happen immediately, if at all,” according to AllThingsD’s Kara Swisher, citing sources. “But (regarding Mason’s future at the company) it has become obvious over the last months that a substantive rift has been developing between Groupon’s key players.”
MIT Technology Review
Until now, Google’s search service has been limited by users’ willingness to, well, search. Determined to overcome such limitations, the company is trying to figure out how to deliver information to users that they never thought to search for, the MIT Technology Review reports. “If Google is to achieve its stated mission to “organize the world's information and make it universally accessible,” says [Jon Wiley, lead user experience designer for Google search], it must find out about those hidden needs and learn how to serve them.”