Intel shares drop, three-year outlook seen lagging rivals

Intel Corp shares declined 2.5 percent on Wednesday after executives forecast modest profit growth over the next three years, signaling it is likely to lag big rivals as the once-dominant chipmaker catches up in technology.

RedCircle’s latest feature makes it easy to tip podcast creators

A group of former Uber employees unveiled their podcasting startup RedCircle last week, and now they’re already launching new features — specifically the ability for listeners to make small tip payments to podcasters.

RedCircle has created a web-based podcast player of its own, but CEO Michael Kadin (previously an engineering manager at Uber) said the mission isn’t to compete with other podcast apps. Instead the team aims to create the tools podcasters need to build a real business.

In fact, RedCircle is already offering some of those tools — like hosting and analytics — for free, and it also launched a cross-promotion marketplace where those podcasters can team up to try to grow each others’ audiences.

As for the new tipping feature, it appears as a button on the RedCircle player, allowing users to pay $2, $5 or a custom amount with just a few clicks (you’ll also need to enter your credit card info, of course). The startup can also automatically insert a tipping link into a podcast’s show notes, so listeners will find out about it regardless of the player they use.

Co-founder Jeremy Lermitte (a former product manager at Uber) added that tipping provides a way for fans to compensate a podcaster for an episode they particularly enjoyed without making the long-term commitment of, say, signing up for a Patreon subscription.

“This allows you to engage at your own pace,” Lermitte said.

Podcasters can and do accept one-time payments via PayPal or Venmo, but Kadin said RedCircle offers more data about who’s making the payments, while also providing a 1099 form for taxes and “all the other things you want to turn this into a real thing, versus something casual.”

“The first thing podcasters say they need is to grow their audience,” he added. “The second thing is to make money from it. Now we’re working on both of those problems. Just give us another week and a half and we’ll make even more progress.”

RedCircle has raised a $1.5m seed round led by Roy Bahat at Bloomberg Beta.

House panel accuses Barr of contempt as Trump invokes executive privilege

A Democratic-led House panel on Wednesday approved a measure to hold U.S. Attorney General William Barr in contempt for refusing to hand over an unredacted copy of the Mueller report on Russian election interference even as President Donald Trump invoked the legal principle of executive privilege to block its disclosure.

U.S. Senate intelligence panel subpoenas Trump’s son: sources

The U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee has subpoenaed one of the president’s sons, Donald Trump Jr., to answer questions about his contacts with Russia, two congressional sources said on Wednesday.

FAA to U.S. airports: Do not install drone countermeasures on your own

The Federal Aviation Administration told U.S. airports in a letter released on Wednesday they could not install drone countermeasures without federal consent, warning they could pose an aviation safety risk by interfering with aircraft navigation and air navigation services.

U.S. Justice Department accuses House Democrats of playing politics with contempt vote

The U.S. Justice Department on Wednesday accused Democrats on the House Judiciary Committee of engaging in politically motivated attacks, after the panel voted along party lines to hold Attorney General William Barr in contempt for refusing to hand over an unredacted copy of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report.

Senator Hawley announces bill banning loot boxes, pay-to-win mechanics

Senator Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) today announced plans to introduce “The Protecting Children from Abusive Games Act,” which would target “the exploitation of children through ‘pay-to-win’ and ‘loot box’ monetization practices by the video game industry,” according to a summary released by Hawley’s office.

As outlined, the bill would mirror the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act in applying to games “targeted at those under the age of 18” and “games with wider audiences whose developers knowingly allow minor players to engage in microtransactions.” Under the bill, such games would prohibit loot boxes, defined here as “microtransactions offering randomized or partially randomized rewards to players.”

The bill summary also takes aim at so-called “pay-to-win” mechanics that “manipulate a game’s progression system… to induce players to spend money…” or which alter the “competitive balance between players of multiplayer games.” The Federal Trade Commission and state attorneys general would be able to enforce the law.

Read 6 remaining paragraphs | Comments

Nadler says Barr contempt citation will go to House floor ‘rapidly’

U.S. House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler, after his panel voted on Wednesday to hold Attorney General William Barr in contempt of Congress for refusing to release an unredacted copy of the Mueller report, said the measure would go to the House floor “rapidly.”