A group of former Gawker employees launched a Kickstarter to buy back Gawker.com and relaunch the publication

Gawker Kickstarter

  • Former Gawker employees have launched a Kickstarter to buy Gawker.com.
  • Gawker.com ceased publication in 2016 and was not included in the sale to Univision.
  • Gawker founder Nick Denton is not involved. 

A group of former Gawker employees launched a Kickstarter on Monday to buy back the domain name and archives of the pioneering blog, which ceased publishing in 2016.

The non-profit project is looking to not only keep the site’s archive of blog posts alive, but also aims to re-launch the site. 

“We’re a group of former Gawker Media employees across editorial, tech, and business, and we want to put in our own bid to buy it back,” according to the Kickstarter page

The reason that the archives and domain name are for sale is because they were not included in the sale of the other Gawker Media properties to Univision in 2016. Gawker Media was forced to sell sites such as Gizmodo after it was forced into bankruptcy after Hulk Hogan was awarded $140 million in damages stemming from a Gawker news article. Billionaire investor Peter Thiel secretly financed Hogan’s lawsuit. 

The Gawker Foundation

The Kickstarter campaign, which is backed by a group calling itself “The Gawker Foundation,”  is looking for $500,000. 

It’s being led by James Del, a former advertising executive at Gawker, and also involves Elizabeth Spiers, Gawker’s first editor, among what they say is a dozen “Gawker Media alumni.” Spiers will advise and will join the Gawker Foundation’s board of directors.

“I’m the only name involved because everyone else has a day job working for another company. I run my own company, so there’s no risk that I’m going to fire myself for being involved,” Spiers told Business Insider in an email. 

Del told Business Insider that Cody Brown, founder of IRL VR and the former CEO and co-founder of Scroll Kit (which he sold to Word Press in 2014), is also advising the foundation.

“We can’t disclose the names of the former employees or editors as most of them have other jobs for the time being, but I can say that I’ve spoken with a few former Gawker.com EICs and received their support, over a dozen former employees and editors, and several “friends of Gawker” as well,” Del told Business Insider in an email. “As such, we don’t have a named editor of Gawker.com yet, though as the campaign progresses we plan to roll out more information about how that person will be selected.”

One person who’s not involved is Gawker founder and former publisher Nick Denton. “First I had heard of it,” Denton told Business Insider in an email on Monday. 

Nick Denton is not involved, I haven’t spoken to him in almost a year and he is currently working on his new project in Europe,” Del told Business Insider. “As far as I know, he’s completely moved on (and barred in the bankruptcy agreement from participating in the sale).”


Re-launching Gawker

FILE PHOTO: Terry Bollea, aka Hulk Hogan, sits in court during his trial against Gawker Media, in St Petersburg, Florida March 17, 2016.    Dirk Shadd/Tampa Bay Times/Pool via ReutersThe foundation has a two-part objective. First, to keep Gawker’s archives online, which consists of a “couple hundred thousand articles,” according to Spiers. 

The second objective is to relaunch Gawker under the “stewardship of former editors, new writers, and an entirely membership-funded model.” If it’s not under the Gawker.com domain name, they will choose a new name, but the site will still be modeled off of Gawker. 

“By setting ourselves up as an ownerless, advertiser-less, non-profit media organization, the editorial team will be able to do what they do best,” said the group’s Kickstarter page.

But the Gawker Foundation’s goals may be limited by what the Gawker Media estate decides to do with the site’s archive and domain name. 

“My biggest concern personally is that all of Gawker gets erased, and you’re talking 14 years of work and a couple hundred thousand articles,” Spiers said.

“The estate may decide to separate the archives from the domains, etc., but right now, they’re packaged together,” she continued. If they lose the bid, the winner could choose to take the archives down, but Spiers hopes that whoever else bids has an interest in preservation.  

That’s part of the reason why they’re trying to raise $500,000 or even more — to make a bid on the Gawker archives, in addition to funding the new site. “I think the bids are going to be all over the place on this one,” Spiers said.

“I’ve been in digital publishing for about a decade, so I have a pretty good understanding of how much money it takes to run a lean digital publication,” Del told Business Insider when asked about how they landed on the $500,000 target. “That paired with a reasonable amount for archival purposes and a potential bid for the site led us to that number, though the more we raise the more competitive we can be at auction.”

The Kickstarter is currently accepting donations. Possible rewards includes membership to the new Gakwer, a launch party invite, an even special “commenter star” status for people who pledge $10,000 or more. 

Max Tani contributed to this report. 

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Source: http://www.thisisinsider.com/savegawker-kickstarter-campaign-former-employees-2017-12


You can now get an iPhone X delivered in as little as 2 days (AAPL)

iphone x

  • The iPhone X now ships in 2-4 business days.
  • That’s a major change from when the phone first launched — shipping times were previously estimated at 2-3 weeks.
  • Apple has likely been able to increase the number of phones shipping during the holidays, despite reports that the device was in short supply.

After weeks of long delivery times, supply of the new iPhone X seems to have caught up with demand.

According to a report from MacRumors, the iPhone X is now shipping in 2-4 business days. This applies to all phones on AT&T, Verizon, and Sprint, as well as devices without SIMs. T-Mobile is still shipping phones at a slight delay with estimated delivery for December 19, according to MacRumors. 

The improved shipping times are a change from when the phone first launched. At the time, models for all four US carriers on Apple’s online store were showing delivery times of several weeks after the device’s November 3 launch date. In some cases, Apple’s website said the iPhone X would be delivered in “2-3 weeks.” Other people got confirmation messages that said their iPhone X wouldn’t ship for 4-5 weeks. 

This change in shipping times suggests that Apple has been able to greatly increase the number of devices shipping during the holidays. The phone was previously expected to be in short supply due to production issues.

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NOW WATCH: Here are the best iPhone apps of 2017

Source: http://www.thisisinsider.com/apple-iphone-x-shipping-in-2-to-4-days-2017-12

10 movies that completely don’t deserve their Golden Globe nominations — sorry

golden globe undeserved movies

This year’s Golden Globe nominations are here. And, as usual, they’re pretty weird.

It’s great to see some universally beloved movies get a lot of nominations, like “The Shape of Water” and “The Post,” and for some overlooked performances to be highlighted, like Denzel Washington in “Roman J. Israel, Esq.”

But other movies are shockingly snubbed, like “Wonder Woman” and “The Big Sick.” You can chalk it up to the eccentric tastes of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA), the 90 or so foreign journalists who run the Golden Globes every year and decide the nominees.

Here are 10 baffling inclusions in this year’s round of nominations. The Golden Globes will air at 8 p.m. EST on Sunday, January 7, on NBC.

SEE ALSO: Here are all the nominees for the 2018 Golden Globes

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“The Boss Baby”? Really?

To be fair, “The Boss Baby” wasn’t actually all that bad. And neither is, I’m sure, “Ferdinand,” which looks like it’s the most generic animated movie about animals ever made. But it’s hard to believe these two rank among the “best” animated movies of the year.

“The LEGO Ninjago Movie” was much more clever than “The Boss Baby,” for example, and the charming “Captain Underpants: The First Movie” deserves a shot. Heck, even “Cars 3” was miles better than “Cars 2” and had some of that classic Pixar spark.

Why on Earth did the Golden Globes nominate “In the Fade”?

The Golden Globes has a tendency to nominate people who are famous even when they haven’t made anything good that year. This year, one of those movies is “In the Fade,” for best foreign language film.

The weird thing is, director Fatih Akin isn’t even that famous, and he hasn’t been since he last made a good movie, which was “The Edge of Heaven” ten years ago. Instead, the HFPA could have nominated something like “BPM (Beats Per Minute)” or “Foxtrot.”

“Molly’s Game” is far from Aaron Sorkin’s best work.

Aaron Sorkin is one of the few movie screenwriter you’ll recognize just by listening to his distinctive, rapid dialogue. But while “Molly’s Game” — also his first directorial effort — is a solid movie, it’s hard to argue that it has one of the best screenplays of the year. It’s far from Sorkin’s best effort (I’d give that to “The Social Network”), and something like “Coco,” “Phantom Thread,” “Get Out,” or “The Big Sick” would be more deserving in the best screenplay category.

See the rest of the story at INSIDER
Source: http://www.thisisinsider.com/golden-globes-nominations-movies-undeserved-2018-2017-12

Guillermo del Toro’s ‘The Shape of Water’ leads the Golden Globes race with 7 nominations — here’s why you should see it

The Shape of Water Fox Searchlight

  • “The Shape of Water” by Guillermo del Toro led all Golden Globe nominees with seven.
  • That could foreshadow a major Oscars run.
  • We saw it at the Toronto International Film Festival and found it to be a moving monster love story.

The latest film by visionary director Guillermo del Toro, “The Shape of Water,” is officially a frontrunner in the race to the Academy Awards. Leading all nominees at this year’s Golden Globes with seven, this unique love story is one that shouldn’t be missed.

Here’s what we thought about the movie when we saw it at the Toronto International Film Festival:

There are some directors who have a special talent for building worlds all their own, without any source material, and Guillermo del Toro is one of the best doing it right now.

His latest movie, “The Shape of Water,” followed up its grand prize win at the Venice Film Festival this past weekend by dazzling everyone here at the Toronto International Film Festival.

Written by del Toro and Vanessa Taylor, the movie is set during the Space Race at a time when America isn’t ready to put a man in a shuttle yet. In the film, there’s a creature the government has captured in the Amazon that it thinks can be used as a test dummy on a launch. But that plan is quickly knocked down, as the military believes it makes more sense to kill and examine the creature to know more about its capabilities.

There’s one problem: The creature has befriended a mute janitor named Eliza (Sally Hawkins), who is determined to see that doesn’t happen. 

That’s the real story of “The Shape of Water,” the relationship between the creature and Eliza. She lives atop a run-down movie theater and spends her days going to work at an military base, where she cleans alongside chatty Zelda (Octavia Spencer), and at home hanging out with her gay neighbor, Giles (Richard Jenkins). Only able to communicate through signing, Eliza instantly has a connection with the creature as she sees them both as prisoners: literally for the creature and figuratively for Eliza, as she cannot find someone to love her.

After Eliza comes up with a daring escape from the lab with the creature, pulling a fast one on the head of security, Strickland (Michael Shannon), Eliza keeps the creature in the bath tub of her apartment until the rainy season comes when she’ll bring him out into the ocean. In that time, a relationship between Eliza and the creature sparks.

Throughout all this, we’re surrounded in a world del Toro has created that has the feel of an old Hollywood movie, from the set design to the wacky dream sequence when Eliza and the creature suddenly have a brief dance number. “The Shape of Water” combines a creature feature and a melodrama to tell a beautiful story that will thrill as much as get you emotional. 

As with every del Toro movie, there’s a nice touch of gore in it, too. The major squirm moments come from the Strickland character, who early in the movie has two fingers sliced off by the creature. And let’s just say the reattachment of the digits to the hand doesn’t work out.

The creature is played by the always great Doug Jones, who del Toro fans will remember played Abe Sapien in his “Hellboy” movies, while Hawkins gives a wonderful performance as Eliza. And let’s not forget two of the best Michaels working today: Shannon and Michael Stuhlbarg (as the good-natured scientist).

Expect a lot of talk about this movie as we get deeper into awards season.

“The Shape of Water” is currently playing in limited release:

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NOW WATCH: A company invented sweatpants that have built-in socks, and it’s truly spectacular

Source: http://www.thisisinsider.com/the-shape-of-water-gets-most-golden-globe-nominations-with-7-2017-12

A blockchain tech company raised $42.5 million in 2 weeks — in ‘one of the easiest fundraising processes ever’

A man walks past a bitcoin ATM in Vilnius, Lithuania December 6, 2017. REUTERS/Ints Kalnins

  • BitGo, a blockchain technology company, closed a $42.5 million fundraising round.
  • The company, which provides technology for institutional investors to dive into the cryptocurrency market, said the fundraise took just 2 weeks.

BitGo, a US-based blockchain technology company, raised $42.5 million in a Series B fundraising round, the company announced Monday.

BitGo, which is headquartered in Palo Alto, California, said it will use the money to expand its business outside the US to help more companies dive into the nascent digital coin market. Hedge funds and other institutional investors leverage BitGo’s technology to overcome some of risk and compliance issues associated with digital currencies.

The fundraise was led by Valor Equity Partners, according to the firm, with DRW, a Chicago-based trading firm, also participating. Already, a number of companies utilize BitGo’s technology to power their own cryptocurrency products, including CME Group and The Royal Mint.

A spokesperson for the firm told Business Insider the fundraise took two weeks. The length of the fundraising round is striking, mirroring the speed at which cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin have appreciated in recent months.

“This has been one of the easiest fundraising processes ever,” CEO Mike Belshe, an engineer who was among the first to work on the Google Chrome team, told Business Insider in an interview.

Belshe said 2018 will be the year in which traditional asset managers and hedge funds enter the market.

“We need to be prepared for the $1 billion fund which needs our technology,” Belshe said.

Crypto-focused hedge funds have launched this year at an eye-popping rate, according to fintech analytics firm Autonomous NEXT. The launch of bitcoin futures by two established exchanges in December could further push the cryptocurrency market, which exceeds $400 billion, to new heights next year.

Read more about blockchain, the technology powering bitcoin »

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NOW WATCH: This restaurant serves a gallon of pho

Source: http://www.thisisinsider.com/a-blockchain-tech-company-raised-425-million-in-2-weeks-in-one-of-the-easiest-fundraising-processes-ever-2017-12

Here are all the nominees for the 2018 Golden Globes

big little lies

Nominations for the 75th Golden Globe Awards were announced Monday morning at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Los Angeles.

Kristen Bell, Sharon Stone, Alfre Woodard, and Garrett Hedlund announced the nominations in a live stream.

Nominations are coming in and HBO’s “Big Little Lies” has numerous nominations.

The Golden Globes ceremony airs on January 7, 2018 at 8 p.m. EST on NBC, and will be hosted by Seth Meyers.

Below is the complete list of the nominees:

Best actor in a TV miniseries or movie

Robert De Niro, “The Wizard of Lies”
Jude Law, “The Young Pope”
Kyle MacLachlan, “Twin Peaks”
Ewan McGregor, “Fargo”
Geoffrey Rush, “Genius”

Best TV movie or mini-series

“Big Little Lies”
“Feud: Bette and Joan”
“The Sinner”
“Top of the Lake: China Girl”

Best animated film

“The Boss Baby”
“The Breadwinner”
“Loving Vincent”

Best supporting actor in TV miniseries or TV movie

Alfred Molina, “Feud”
Alexander Skarsgard, “Big Little Lies”
David Thewlis, “Fargo”
David Harbour, “Stranger Things”
Christian Slater, “Mr. Robot”

Best motion picture, drama
Best motion picture, comedy or musical
Best director
Best actor in a motion picture, drama
Best actor in a motion picture, comedy or musical
Best actress in a motion picture, drama
Best actress in a motion picture, comedy or musical
Best supporting actor in a motion picture
Best supporting actress in a motion picture
Best original score
Best TV series, comedy
Best TV series, drama
Best actor in a TV series, drama
Best actress in a TV series, comedy
Best screenplay, motion picture
Best foreign language film
Best original song
Best supporting actress in TV miniseries or movie
Best actress in a TV miniseries or movie
Best actor in a TV series, comedy
Best actress in a TV series, drama

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NOW WATCH: A company invented sweatpants that have built-in socks, and it’s truly spectacular

Source: http://www.thisisinsider.com/2018-golden-globes-nominees-complete-list-2017-12

Facebook and Twitter could reportedly be fined up to £20 million if they don’t tackle online bullying (FB, TWTR)

mark zuckerberg

Social media firms like Facebook and Twitter could face fines of up to £20 million if they fail to tackle cyber bullying on their platforms, according to a report from The Sun on Sunday.

Digital Minister Matt Hancock reportedly announced new powers on Sunday that will force some of America’s biggest tech companies to make their platforms “age appropriate.”

Under the reforms, tech firms will reportedly have to ensure that children’s accounts have the highest possible privacy settings as default.

“This statutory code will require tailored protections to be built into websites and apps for children under 16,” Hancock reportedly told The Sun.

“We all want rules in place so children can be safe and protected online. And at the moment that’s not happening.”

The Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport, which Hancock leads, did not immediately respond to Business Insider’s request for comment.

Although The Sun calls out Facebook and Twitter, it’s likely that other platforms such as YouTube and Instagram will be impacted by the new laws. 

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NOW WATCH: Five creative ways scientists have solved problems

Source: http://www.thisisinsider.com/facebook-and-twitter-could-reportedly-be-fined-up-to-20-million-if-they-dont-tackle-online-bullying-2017-12

South Korea has reportedly banned bitcoin futures

Soccer Football - International Friendly - South Korea v Colombia - Suwon World Cup Stadium, Suwon, South Korea - November 10, 2017 - South Korea's national soccer team members stand behind the national flag.

  • South Korea has banned securities firms from handling bitcoin futures.
  • Exchange operator Cboe launched first bitcoin futures on Sunday night.
  • Huge demand for the product crashed Cboe’s website and sent prices jumping.

LONDON — South Korean officials have reportedly banned local finance firms from handling bitcoin futures, one of the hottest new financial products to launch in years.

Business Korea reported that the Financial Services Commission of Korea issued a directive banning securities firms from taking part in bitcoin futures transactions, citing sources.

South Korea has taken a tough stance on digital currencies, banning initial coin offerings (ICOs) earlier this year. ICOs involve startups issuing their own digital currencies to raise funds.

Bitcoin is hugely popular in South Korea. Mati Greenspan, an analyst with trading platform eToro, said in an email last week: “Recent estimates state that 21% of all global BTC volume are done in Korean Won.”

Greenspan said proximity to North Korea might help explain the higher risk appetite of South Koreans. He added: “After recently going through a political meltdown and ousting the former President Park Geun-Hye, and after watching the CEO of the Samsung go to prison on corruption charges, their faith in the system is currently at a justifiable all-time low.”

Bitcoin was originally created as an anti-establishment currency meant to be above the control of governments.

Bitcoin futures start with a bang

The ban on bitcoin futures was made ahead of the launch of the new products on Sunday evening. Chicago-based exchange operator Cboe began offering bitcoin future contracts on Sunday and was met with huge demand. Cboe’s website briefly crashed and the price of both bitcoin and futures contracts leapt higher.

Hussein Sayed, chief market strategist at FXTM, said in an email: “The initial reaction was beyond expectations with the futures contract climbing more than 20% and triggering two trading halts. CBOE’s website experienced unprecedented traffic which may well have sent a new benchmark; the frenetic activity led to delays and outages.”

Cboe’s product is the first that gives institutional investors such as hedge funds and asset managers exposure to bitcoin. The market allows them to speculate on the future price of bitcoin without having to directly buy and hold the digital currency. This skirts any regulatory and custodian issues that might be presented by bitcoin.

Institutional investors have grown increasingly interested in bitcoin as the cryptocurrency’s price has continued to rise. Bitcoin is up over 1,000% against the dollar so far this year and rose as much as 40% in the last week alone.

Sayed said: “So far, it seems professional investors aren’t willing to bet against the bitcoin, despite the many warnings of a bubble that will burst soon. Many traders aren’t even interested in the price direction, but the listing of the futures contract on CBOE and later next week on the CME will provide them an arbitrage trading opportunity due to the vast pricing differences.”

Futures fears

South Korea’s regulators aren’t the only people worried about bitcoin futures. The digital currency is subject to huge amounts of volatility — swings of 20% on the day are not unusual — and some market participants fear futures contracts could add a large degree of unquantified risk to the financial system.

The Futures Industry Association wrote to the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) last week to complain that there had not been “proper public transparency and input” from industry over the products. Banks such as JPMorgan and Citi are also reportedly not clearing bitcoin futures for clients, at least for now.

Sayed said: “The arbitrage trading will lead to improved price efficiency and probably less volatility. After volatility settles down, the focus will return to the price direction.”

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Source: http://www.thisisinsider.com/south-korea-bitcoin-futures-2017-12

Someone in the UK watched ‘Bee Movie’ 357 times in 2017

bee movie

  • One anonymous Netflix user watched the DreamWorks film “Bee Movie” almost once a day for a year.
  • Yes, really.

We all fall victim to a day on the sofa in front of Netflix every now and again.

But one unidentified Netflix subscriber caused a buzz when they took a movie binge to the next level.

In Netflix’s 2017 “Year in Review,” the online streaming platform revealed that one UK user watched the 2007 DreamWorks classic “Bee Movie” 357 times this year. That works out at almost once a day, or 23.5 days of non-stop streaming.

“Bee Movie” follows the trials and tribulations of Barry the Bee (Jerry Seinfeld), who finds the prospect of working in a hive all his life uninspiring. Barry’s world is turned upside down when he meets a New York florist and decides to sue the human race for eating the bees’ honey.

Netflix found the average UK member only watched around 60 films on the website in 2017.

The American entertainment company honey-combed through mountains of data from November 1, 2016, to November 1, 2017, to work out the most streamed, binged, and loved shows of the year.

But this streamer’s bee obsession wasn’t the only unbelievable fact in Netflix’s report.

The review also found that subscribers around the world collectively watched more than 140 million hours of Netflix a day in 2017 — amounting to over a billion hours a week.

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NOW WATCH: This video of how matches are made is going viral

Source: http://www.thisisinsider.com/someone-in-the-uk-watched-bee-movie-357-times-in-2017-2017-12

10 things in tech you need to know today (BTC, AAPL)

the wolf of wall street

Good morning! Here is the tech news you need to know this Monday.

1. The launch of bitcoin futures, which allows traders to bet on the future price of the cryptocurrency, sent the price shooting up $1,000. Bitcoin futures went live on Chicago exchange group Cboe on Sunday night.

2. Apple has acquired Shazam from $400 million (£298 million). Shazam is a British music recognition and advertising startup which was last valued at $1 billion (£745 million).

3. Android founder and Essential CEO Andy Rubin is back at his phone startup after reports emerged of an “inappropriate” relationship with a colleague while he had been at Google. Rubin said his leave of absence was unrelated to the reports, and that he had asked for time off in early November.

4. Apple’s design chief Jony Ive has taken control of the design team once again. Ive stepped back from his day-to-day administrative duties in 2015, but a wave of criticism about Apple’s products followed.

5. Germany’s intelligence services have found their Chinese counterparts used fake LinkedIn profiles to try and dig up personal information about German officials. Fake headhunters, consultants, and scholars contacted some 10,000 German citizens.

6. Uber has settled a lawsuit with a woman who accused the firm’s executives of obtaining her medical records after she was raped. The complainant had already successfully sued Uber for failing to do a thorough background check on the driver.

7. Microsoft has set up its own internal artificial intelligence university to try and fill the AI skills gap. The programme trains computer scientists who already specialise in a different discipline the “practical sense” of machine learning.

8. A BBC investigation has found sexualised content on gaming streaming site Twitch. The “IRL” section features female gamers who wear revealing clothing while the game, and even sell explicit services through the site.

9. The British YouTuber Alfie Deyes is setting up his own venture to try and persuade his millions of followers to back startups. Deyes told Business Insider he wants to collaborate with and invest in startups.

10. HQ Trivia, the breakout iPhone quiz game, is coming to Android in time for Christmas. HQ Trivia is a live quiz game where winners can get real cash prizes, and games can garner a quarter of a million players.

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: Can you spot the critter in these animal camouflage videos?

Source: http://www.thisisinsider.com/10-things-in-tech-you-need-to-know-today-december-11-2017-12