Daily Crunch: Bezos accuses National Enquirer of blackmail
The Daily Crunch is TechCrunch’s roundup of our biggest and most important stories. If you’d like to get this delivered to your inbox every day at around 9am Pacific, you can subscribe here:
1. Jeff Bezos accuses National Enquirer of blackmailing him — and publishes the details himself
Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos says he is being blackmailed with nude selfies by AMI, owner of the National Enquirer, over claims the publisher has acted as a political operative. In a Medium post, Bezos described the process by which he has been targeted by AMI.
AMI, meanwhile, says it was engaging in “good faith negotiations.”
2. Apple tells app developers to disclose or remove screen recording code
This follows an investigation by TechCrunch that revealed major companies, like Expedia, Hollister and Hotels.com, were using a third-party analytics tool to record every tap and swipe inside the app.
3. Spotify will now suspend or terminate accounts it finds are using ad blockers
In an email to users, the streaming music and podcast platform said its new user guidelines “mak[e] it clear that all types of ad blockers, bots and fraudulent streaming activities are not permitted.” Accounts that use ad blockers in Spotify face immediate suspension or termination under the new rules, which go into effect on March 1.
4. T-Mobile plans to offer à la carte media subscriptions, but no TV ‘skinny bundle’
The mobile operator’s strategy will focus on helping customers pick and choose which paid TV subscriptions they want to access — a move that very much sounds like T-Mobile is going the “Amazon Channels” route with its mobile streaming plans.
5. Woody Allen just sued Amazon for $68 million
Woody Allen filed a $68 million suit with the Southern District of New York over a four-picture deal with Amazon. The suit arrives as Allen’s latest film, “A Rainy Day in New York,” has been set in limbo, months after completion.
6. Sprint calls AT&T’s 5G E label ‘false advertising’ in new lawsuit
AT&T’s adoption of the “5G Evolution” label has already been controversial among industry followers and fellow carriers alike for watering down the meaning of next-gen connectivity — and now Sprint is looking to do something about it.
7. Subscription startup Scroll acquires news aggregator Nuzzel
Tony Haile, who previously led analytics company Chartbeat, is trying to rethink the business model for news at his new startup, Scroll. Now he’s adding aggregation and curation to the mix with the acquisition of Nuzzel.