Amazon Stock Plummets; HQ’s Biggest Prize Ever; Facebook Updates Privacy Policy

The Water Coolest

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Amazon, who is no stranger to being on President Trump’s bad side, took a beating after it was reported that Trump was talking about going after Amazon over anti-trust concerns. With the news came a 5% drop in Amazon’s share price, which closed at $1,386.17. By the end of the day, Amazon had lost over $31B in market value.

Donny Deals, who is allegedly worried about the health of mom-and-pop shops could also be seeking to implement an internet tax for online retailers. Amazon already collects sales tax from customers, but that’s reportedly not enough.

According to reports from the White House, the President is always looking to level the playing field for businesses, but there are no specific policies on the table currently. The art of the deal, indeed.

Water Cooler Talking Point: “From a competition standpoint, I can understand why people are worried about Amazon. You find me something I can’t buy on Amazon, and I’ll find you someone who doesn’t know how to use a search bar and enter key.”



Facebook is updating its security and privacy policies to ensure data security. Thanks, Mark, ‘preciate it.

The social network vowed to add a new privacy shortcut that allows users to view what data about them has been collected. And users will be able to go a step further and control the information used for ad targeting. Even past searches and friend requests (read: stalking your ex) can be removed.

Zuck even went so far as to cut ties with data brokers who help advertisers target people on the internet.

FB was planning to launch a new home speaker to compete with the likes of Alexa and Google Home at its F8 conference at the beginning of May, but thanks to the breach, that project has been delayed. Looks like Zuck’s going to have to shut off his lights manually, like a chump.

Water Cooler Talking Point: “Who thought those ‘What character from The Office are you?’ quizzes were really harvesting our information for political injustice?! The quiz was spot on though. As much as I want to be Jim, I’m more of an Andy. My real office even calls me the hummingbird.”



“It’s time to play who wants to be a quarter of a millionaire, HQ’ties.” – Scott Ragowsky aka Quiz Khalifa, probably.

HQ Trivia offered their biggest cash prize to-date last night: $250k. The game, sponsored by Warner Bros. promoted the new Steven Spielberg movie ‘Ready Player One.’

Monday’s game, which was sponsored by Nike,  saw four lucky winners splitting a $100k grand prize, and a pair of limited edition HQ themed Nike Air Max 270s.

These huge purses represent a shift in HQ’s business model: from relying on investor money to fund prizes to finding sponsors to pony up the jackpots. With the games regularly attracting millions of participants, it’s no surprise the model could be lucrative.

Water Cooler Talking Point: “The business model is so “millennial” it hurts: a bunch of individuals sitting alone on their respective couches playing a game together but having zero interaction. It so crazy it might just work.”




  • Lior Ron, the founder of Otto, and current head of Uber’s self-driving truck division is leaving the ride-sharing company. Ron co-founded Otto with Anthony Levandowski who was at the center of the lawsuit between Uber and Waymo.
  • SoftBank and Saudi Arabia, an oil-rich country, plan to collaborate on a $200B solar power project which promises to bring 200GW of solar capacity to Saudi Arabia by 2030. Because of course SoftBank and Saudi Arabia are teaming up on the biggest solar project in the history of mankind.
  • Credit Karma, the home of free credit scores, raises $500M at a $3.5B valuation, in a funding round led by Silver Lake Partners.
  • Equifax plans to hire former GE executive Mark Begor as CEO. Apparently, all former Enron and Tyco execs were spoken for.
  • Pandora will launch customized playlists, a popular feature that rival Spotify currently boasts. The company will use “algorithms and techniques to help drive content discovery and delivery.”
  • US indices were mixed yesterday:
    • DOW: +0.54%
    • S&P 500: +0.31%
    • NASDAQ: -0.15%