Dozen Worthy Reads 📰 (№172)

This week : Facebook files continued, Siri and strategy, Netflix/Squid Game, Banking-as-a-service, Trendspotting, Reputation based systems, Web3.0, Twitch hack, the music industry, TSMC .. and more

Hi All,

I hope you all are doing well and welcome to Dozen Worthy Reads. A newsletter where I talk about the most interesting things about tech that I read the past couple of weeks or write about tech happenings. You can sign up here or just read on …

Lets get into this week’s reads:

Deep Dive : Facebook Files

The Facebook Saga continues with several different points of view including my own. Here are some very interesting takes and lots to think about as tech professionals and human beings. At the end of it there are multiple problems with varying degrees of solutions -Is the research correct? With research sometimes it is not black and white, Is regulation or breaking down the company going to solve problems? How? Is the conversation about regulation and Section 230? Is the conversation about stakeholders? Who are the stakeholders here? Facebook is a for profit company and (mostly) has operated within the confines of the law but perhaps not ethically? Balancing these priorities are hard! Finally can the use of AI/ML solve these contextual problems and if they’re not solved will advertisers choose to not work with Facebook? At the end of it we all vote with our wallets and time every single day .. and how have we voted?

The Facebook whistleblower testifies — by Casey Newton The Facebook Whistleblower Is Heroic… And Terribly Wrong The impact of Facebook and Instagram on teens isn’t so clear Facebook banned me for life because I created the tool Unfollow Everything. Changing The Facebook Conversation — by Charlie Warzel — Galaxy Brain The Facebook Whistleblower Doesn’t Have the Solution — Mother Jones Facebook Is Weaker Than We Knew

Strategy : Siri and a wasted head start

A good look at Siri and why Siri struggled to gain deep adoption. Being a closed ecosystem primarily to sell expensive hardware v/s working with partners as Amazon did result in a subpar product. Apple’s privacy narrative also shares some of the blame. With a company as large as Apple that sells devices differentiated by hardware and software coupled tightly and working together is not going to change. The key questions are what happens to Siri? Does it help differentiate the hardware that Apple sells? Does it improve with time (perhaps more slowly) or does Apple find more use cases (cars?) for Siri. If Apple was playing the long game maybe they lost the game to cheaper, subsidised devices? This is where strategy is key. For Amazon and Google the device opens up a search/shopping ecosystem. What does Siri do for Apple? Does having Siri enable Apple to sell more devices? Or rather the question should be if Apple removes Siri will people stop buying iPhones? Siri’s 10-year anniversary is a reminder of Apple’s wasted head start

Culture/Strategy : Netflix and pop culture

If you haven’t seen Squid Game, first off, you should! When I first saw the show on my list of recommendations, the name itself was not appealing but seeing all the social chatter around it made me want to watch it. Tanay Jaipuria has captured the key elements of why Netflix is poised to create future IP, create pop culture moments and continue to do so around the world. This also enabled new subs to come for the show and stay for the rest : The Netflix Game — by Tanay Jaipuria — Tanay’s Newsletter

Industry : Banking as a service

A deep look at Banking as a Service enabling any and every company to add a finance layer to their product but this time targeted at developers that enabled Twilio to enable telephony and text to any app. Banking-as-a-Service: The $1T Market to Build the Twilio of Embedded Finance

Strategy : The thin edge of the wedge

This is an old read but nevertheless extremely important in today’s tech world. What is the wedge for your customer that leads to a longer term strategy. Companies solve one small problem well for a specific segment of customer and move into other areas and the feature ceases to be a “feature”: The “thin edge of the wedge” strategy

Culture & Product : Trendspotting

Marie Dollé rounds up seven different strategies on how to spot trends or reduce noise.

Product/Web3.0 : Frameworks for reputation based systems

Reputation based systems are a trust mechanism and are a crapshoot today. Can you trust Amazon reviews? Can you trust App Store reviews? Can reputation be bought and sold or does it have to be earned? A look at how this impacts Web3.0 : A Novel Framework for Reputation-Based Systems — Future

Web 3.0 : Why Web 3.0 matters

On that note a great read on why Web3.0 matters. Today it’s niche but using the lessons from Web1.0 and Web2.0 how is Web3.0 better and fairer? In Web 2.0 companies first cooperate with users and when they grow large enough they compete. Web3.0 solves this with tokens : Why Web3 Matters — Future

Analysis : Impact of the Twitch hack

A look at the impact of the recent Twitch hack and how it impacts streamers more than it does Twitch : The Twitch Hack Is Worse for Streamers Than for Twitch

Analysis : What should the music industry do?

How the music industry can learn from gaming. Music has always been about royalties and protecting those loyalties. However this closed nature has stunted growth and this article provides an in depth look back and suggestion for the music industry : The Music Industry Is Built on Artists, but Shuns Creators — Future

Product and Culture : Tiktok, Insta, and India

A look at the difference between TikTok and Insta in India (and I’m sure in several other countries). TikTok was built for anyone but Insta was not : Instagram has largely replaced TikTok in India, and erased working-class creators

Industry : TSMC

Great profile of TSMC, how it became a $550B company and how Mark Liu has to balance out priorities and stakeholders : Inside the World’s Largest Semiconductor Chip Manufacturer | Time

Thank you for reading. Stay safe, be well! If you enjoyed reading this please consider sharing with a friend or two ( or sign up here if you came across this or were forwarded this)

Originally published at on October 9, 2021.

Product, Strategy, Growth, Business, Engineering. Love Tech