BREAKING NEWS : FDA vaccine advisers recommend authorization of Johnson & Johnson's coronavirus vaccine Full Story

PACIFIC: Who wants Twitter?

What's Next: M&A Heyday: Tim Armstrong, CEO of Verizon's Oath, tells me the consolidation of tech, media and...

Posted: May 1, 2018 3:38 PM
Updated: May 1, 2018 3:38 PM

What's Next: M&A Heyday: Tim Armstrong, CEO of Verizon's Oath, tells me the consolidation of tech, media and telecom will likely grow more intense as companies race to keep up with consumers' "massive shift" to mobile and over-the-top services. "People are trying to position themselves for whatever their weakness areas are and make them strengths."

Sign up for PACIFIC: The new CNNMoney newsletter about the center of change and innovation

"It used to be that companies merged. Now ... industries merge," Armstrong said in an interview at the Milken Global Conference. "If you look across different sectors like retail and financial services and media and tech, there's a lot of activity and it is driven by keeping up with consumers."

This is why the DOJ vs. AT&T-Time Warner ruling is being watched so closely across tech, media and telecom, he said. "It's a giant signal of how Washington is going to treat M&A overall. It will landscape things for the future."

Will regulators OK T-Mobile-Sprint? "Right now, I don't think we have a viewpoint on it. It's too early."

Fun stat: The volume of global M&A mega-deals (deals over $10 billion) is already higher in the first quarter of 2018 than at any point in history.

Favorite parlor game: Who will buy Twitter? (More below)

---

Today's PACIFIC

Good morning. All eyes are on Apple, which reports earnings after the bell. Expectations are low due to a slowdown in iPhone sales. We're also watching capital returns, services and China sales. Also reporting: Snap and T-Mobile.

I'm back at Milken this morning, then off to New Orleans for Collision, the North American offshoot of the global WebSummit conference.

Bonus: Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has just announced that next year's Collision will be held in Toronto.

---

Bird's the Word: Twitter's new shows

Twitter has announced new deals with NBCUniversal, Disney, Viacom and others to bring original programming to the platform, including a new version of ESPN's "SportsCenter."

The Big Picture: Viewers already engage with television and social media at the same time. These deals marry the two screens, simplifying things for viewers and advertisers. Twitter head of content Kay Madati: "People on our service tell us directly what they want to see through conversations on Twitter."

What's on offer:

- NBCUniversal: Live content from NBC, NBC News, MSNBC, CNBC, Telemundo, TODAY, and E! News.

- Disney: Live shows from ESPN (including "SportsCenter Live") and ABC, Disney Channel, Freeform, Disney Digital Network, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures, Radio Disney and Marvel.

- Viacom: Live news and awards coverage for MTV and BET, a daily pop culture news show from Comedy Central.

- More: Live content from Fox Sports, Turner, Hearst, Will Packer and MLS.

Seeds for the idea: Twitter marketing, January 2017: "Self-professed superfans jump onto Twitter to join dialogues and share excitement around their favorite programs ... while enjoying direct access to talent and watching exclusive clips and information. ... Our research shows that ... passionate audiences are more likely to intend to buy what they see advertised during their favorite shows."

Twitter resurgent

So, who might buy Twitter?

The new partners -- Comcast-NBCUniversal, Disney or a combined CBS and Viacom -- are all within reason. Then again, so are most big tech players.

That said, Bloomberg's Shira Ovide rightly notes that a potential takeover has become more difficult since Twitter started doing well again. The company's market value is now at $23 billion, up from $15 billion in 2016.

"Still," Ovide writes, "deal hope springs eternal."

Sign up for PACIFIC: The new CNNMoney newsletter about the center of change and innovation

---

Amazon Everywhere

- Vancouver: Amazon plans to expand its Vancouver workforce to 5,000 people by 2022, making it one of the largest employers in British Columbia.

- Boston: Amazon will expand its Boston Tech Hub with 2,000 technology jobs in machine learning, speech science, cloud computing, and robotics.

---

Ride-Hail Hell: Uber, Lyft face assault problem

The nightmare scenario of the gig economy: A new CNN investigation has found that at least 103 Uber drivers in the U.S. "have been accused of sexually assaulting or abusing their passengers in the past four years." 18 Lyft drivers have been accused as well.

Nearly one third of the Uber drivers and nearly one quarter of the Lyft drivers "have been convicted for crimes ranging from forcible touching and false imprisonment to rape, and dozens of criminal and civil cases are pending."

CNN's Sara Ashley O'Brien, Nelli Black, Curt Devine and Drew Griffin:

- Uber "said it plans to host 50 community forums nationwide for advocates, leaders, drivers and riders across to talk about the issue. The changes came after CNN first contacted Uber about this story."

- "Uber was made aware of CNN's reporting for this story months ago but the company failed to make any executives available to speak on the record. It canceled an on-camera interview with an Uber executive earlier this month."

- "On a call with CNN last week for an unrelated story, Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said cracking down on sexual assault is a 'new priority for us.'" A Lyft spokesperson said "the safety of the Lyft community is our top priority."

The Big Picture: Rider safety is to Uber and Lyft what data protection is to Facebook and Google. Scandals like these will up pressure on companies to take responsibility for the bad actors who use their technologies.

---

What's Up? Why Koum left Facebook

Speaking of.... My colleague Jordan Valinsky emails:

WhatsApp CEO Jan Koum is leaving his job nearly four years after Facebook bought the messaging app for $22 billion. His departure is reportedly due to disagreements over Facebook's handling of user data.

Why he left, via WaPo's Elizabeth Dwoskin:

- Koum was "worn down" by the constant fights over Facebook's "attempts to use its personal data and weaken its encryption" in order to make it easier for businesses to use its tools.

- Koum's co-founder Brian Acton "left the company in November ... He recently endorsed a #DeleteFacebook social media campaign ... in the wake of the controversy over data privacy ... and "donated $50 million of his money to Signal, a rival messaging app that is geared toward security and privacy."

- "Other WhatsApp employees are demoralized and plan to leave in November, four years and a month after the Facebook acquisition, when they are allowed to exercise all their stock options ..."

The Koum Memo, via CNNMoney's Seth Fiegerman:

- "I'm leaving at a time when people are using WhatsApp in more ways than I could have imagined. The team is stronger than ever and it'll continue to do amazing things."

- Koum said he planned to take "some time off" to collect "rare air-cooled Porsches" and play ultimate frisbee.

Bonus for folks at the F8 developers conference today in San Jose: "Facebook's Privacy Changes Leave Developers Steaming" by NYT's Sheera Frenkel.

Sign up for PACIFIC: The new CNNMoney newsletter about the center of change and innovation

---

What Bill Gates told Trump

"That's not a good use of my time,"

-- Gates' response when President Trump asked if he wanted to be his science adviser.

---

Talk of Tinseltown: DOJ-AT&T deadline set

"DOJ wraps up AT&T antitrust trial with a call for remedies in Time Warner merger" by CNNMoney's Hadas Gold and Jessica Schneider:

- "Judge Richard Leon ... said that he plans to issue his ruling on June 12 but left open the possibility that a ruling could come sooner."

- "The government's lead attorney, Craig Conrath, said the Justice Department prefers structural remedies to the deal, including "partial divestures." Should the merger be approved, he argued, AT&T should be forced to sell a portion of Time Warner such as the Turner Networks, which include CNN, TNT and TBS."

- "AT&T and Time Warner lead attorney Dan Petrocelli slammed the government's case, saying it's 'thin, tenuous' and a 'house of cards.' 'This is a case of theories in search of facts,' he said, telling Leon that the trial "has exposed serious questions about the credibility of the government's entire presentation.'"

What's Next? Depends on who you ask:

- Reuters' Diane Bartz says Judge Leon appears to be "mulling" a "compromise deal."

- NYT's Cecilia Kang says Leon "has given little indication of his thinking throughout the trial, and he gave no sign of his leanings on Monday, either."

---

What Next: The New York Times' interactive feature on InSight, NASA's latest mission to Mars.

See you tomorrow, from New Orleans.

Want this in your inbox every morning? Sign up for PACIFIC: The new CNNMoney newsletter about the center of change and innovation

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 659127

Reported Deaths: 12494
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion903271628
Lake48239872
Allen35663632
Hamilton31929395
St. Joseph29721510
Elkhart25306412
Vanderburgh21173377
Tippecanoe19873199
Johnson16290355
Porter15896268
Hendricks15765300
Clark11885179
Madison11704315
Vigo11538229
Monroe10285159
Delaware9815178
LaPorte9732195
Howard9030195
Kosciusko8529108
Bartholomew7412147
Hancock7392128
Warrick7389147
Floyd7172165
Wayne6616189
Grant6411157
Morgan6054124
Boone605388
Dubois5885111
Dearborn542366
Henry540792
Marshall5406104
Cass539699
Noble508176
Jackson463664
Shelby459390
Lawrence4165111
Gibson401081
Harrison397061
Clinton393753
Montgomery384283
DeKalb384078
Knox355784
Miami355663
Whitley347835
Huntington341276
Steuben337155
Wabash329776
Putnam327359
Ripley325661
Adams321549
Jasper314243
White296151
Jefferson293370
Daviess284696
Fayette270856
Decatur269788
Greene260679
Posey260131
Wells256574
Scott249649
LaGrange240570
Clay239744
Randolph225276
Spencer216630
Jennings214144
Washington209327
Sullivan202639
Fountain200942
Starke186950
Owen181853
Fulton177737
Jay177328
Carroll176118
Perry173035
Orange170750
Rush164322
Vermillion159541
Franklin158835
Tipton145841
Parke138415
Pike127432
Blackford120327
Pulaski106444
Newton96431
Brown94839
Benton91613
Crawford90413
Martin80014
Switzerland7527
Warren75212
Union66910
Ohio52911
Unassigned0429

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 962404

Reported Deaths: 17125
CountyCasesDeaths
Franklin1113121196
Cuyahoga948671715
Hamilton72843954
Montgomery47066879
Summit39845950
Butler35195464
Lucas34971757
Stark29161836
Warren22244270
Lorain21846388
Mahoning19314540
Lake18273301
Clermont18248208
Delaware16320131
Licking14864199
Fairfield14418157
Trumbull14202458
Greene13501212
Medina13263219
Clark12162335
Wood11433193
Portage10897155
Allen10732233
Richland10203205
Miami9969184
Columbiana8077180
Muskingum8068127
Tuscarawas7993235
Pickaway798698
Marion7954137
Wayne7828217
Erie6820184
Ross6092136
Geauga6010129
Hancock5955112
Ashtabula5907144
Scioto5890104
Lawrence521473
Union507852
Darke5016123
Belmont485788
Jefferson4747107
Huron4745117
Sandusky474594
Seneca4633103
Athens459431
Mercer4574101
Washington456487
Auglaize454598
Shelby440168
Knox399586
Putnam3971101
Madison390547
Ashland376695
Fulton376264
Defiance3688102
Brown368242
Crawford355796
Logan351558
Preble351370
Clinton338063
Highland325455
Ottawa320667
Williams300577
Jackson287956
Guernsey284634
Champaign283845
Fayette266844
Perry266243
Morrow257824
Henry243865
Holmes2425104
Hardin242256
Coshocton231647
Van Wert228149
Gallia220246
Adams214532
Pike213227
Wyandot208652
Hocking192648
Carroll179528
Paulding158323
Meigs134036
Noble128442
Monroe115636
Morgan99934
Harrison99732
Vinton76515
Unassigned00
Fort Wayne
Cloudy
37° wxIcon
Hi: 41° Lo: 18°
Feels Like: 37°
Angola
Cloudy
32° wxIcon
Hi: 39° Lo: 16°
Feels Like: 25°
Huntington
Cloudy
37° wxIcon
Hi: 41° Lo: 18°
Feels Like: 37°
Fort Wayne
Cloudy
37° wxIcon
Hi: 41° Lo: 21°
Feels Like: 37°
Lima
Cloudy
40° wxIcon
Hi: 42° Lo: 22°
Feels Like: 31°
Partly sunny Saturday
WFFT Radar
WFFT Temperatures
WFFT National

Community Events