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Jury Orders Meta to Pay Voxer $175 M For Violation of Patent

Facebook parent company, Meta, has been ordered by a jury in Texas Federal court to pay $175 million to walkie-talkie app maker, Voxer, for violation of its patent.

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Facebook parent company, Meta, has been ordered by a jury in Texas Federal court to pay $175 million to walkie-talkie app maker, Voxer, for violation of its patent.

Voxer filed a lawsuit in 2020, where it accused Meta of violating its patents and incorporating its streaming technologies into its Facebook and Instagram live.

Voxer launched the Walkie-Talkie app in 2011, after which it was approached by Facebook about a potential collaboration.

By 2012, Voxer went ahead to share its patent portfolio and proprietary technology with Facebook, but when early meetings failed to result in an agreement, Facebook identified Voxer as a competitor.

According to the document filed in the court, Facebook had no live video or voice product at this time.

The social media giant company then went ahead to revoke Voxer’s access to key components of the Facebook platform, together with eradicating entry to the Discover Buddies” characteristic.

The lawsuit additionally states that the founder and Chairman of Voxer, Tom Katis had met with a senior product supervisor at Facebook to discuss about Meta’s infringement of Voxer’s patents, which was declined by the company, refusing a settlement with Voxer relating to its continuous use of its patent. 

The jury at the Texas federal court discovered that both Facebook and Instagram Live, launched in 2015, and 2016 respectively incorporated Voxer’s technologies and infringed two of its patents.

After much deliberation from the court, the jury concluded that Meta infringed two patents held by Voxer, and therefore awarded Voxer $175 million in damages.

Following this judgment, a Meta spokesperson disputed the claims filed in the lawsuit by Voxer, arguing that the proof introduced in the trial confirmed that Meta didn’t infringe on Voxer’s patents.

Meta’s spokesperson said, “We consider the proof at trial demonstrated that Meta didn’t infringe Voxer’s patents. We intend to hunt additional reduction, together with submitting an attraction.”

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Twitter Employees Quit in Hundreds After Elon Musk Long Hours Demand

Twitter staff down tools ahead of Elon Musk’s Thursday deadline

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Hundreds of Twitter employees have decided to quit the social media company following a Thursday deadline from new owner Elon Musk. Elon Musk had earlier disclosed in an email message that employees that are not ready to work long hours should leave. 

According to insider sources, hundreds of employees have resigned, walking away from a potential work culture that Elon Musk called “Hardcore”. 

Investors King earlier reported that Musk’s work philosophy “Hardcore” requires “working long hours at high intensity”. 

In the email he sent to staff, Musk told them to commit to taking more workload and perform exceptionally or walk away with three-month severance. 

According to the Verge Magazine, farewell emojis kept pouring into Twitter’s slack account as exiting staff signified their decision to leave the microblogging company. 

“I’m not pressing the button,” one departing employee posted in Slack. “My watch ends with Twitter 1.0. I do not wish to be part of Twitter 2.0.” the Verge Magazine quoted one of the employees. 

It could be recalled that Elon Musk named the next phase in Twitter “Twitter 2.0” instructing those who want to join the next phase to press “Yes” on a Google form sent to employees. 

The message added that those who fail to press “Yes” at the end of the deadline which was 5 PM ET on Thursday are subtly saying they want to leave the social media company. 

Prior to this development, Elon Musk had sacked half of the company’s workforce claiming the company wastes about $4 million daily on an excessive workforce. 

Thereby, with the scale of the recent resignation, Twitter may face fresh challenges in meeting up to its core mandate amid growing opposition from rival platforms such as Tiktok and soon to be launched “Bluesky”. 

Investors King earlier reported that Twitter Co-Founder and Former CEO, Jack Dorsey is set to launch a new social media platform known as “Bluesky“.

The platform which is quickly gaining traction attracted more than 30,000 users in two days to its beta version ahead of the launch. 

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Elon Musk Demands Long Working Hours From Twitter Staff or Resign

Twitter staff to commit to long working hours or leave, says Musk

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The world’s richest man and new Twitter owner, Elon Musk has informed Twitter staff that they must commit to long working hours or leave the company. 

According to an email sent to staff, those who intend to stay with the company are expected to commit to “Hardcore” Twitter or bow out. 

Referring to more workload and exceptional performance, in the email, Musk said Twitter “will need to be extremely hardcore” in order to succeed.

“This will mean working long hours at high intensity. Only exceptional performance will constitute a passing grade,” he added. 

Investors King could recall that following the acquisition of the social media platform in a deal worth $44 billion, Musk sacked half of Twitter’s workforce a few days after he sacked the company’s CEO and other top executives.  

Last week, the tech billionaire told Twitter staff that remote working would end and “difficult times” lay ahead. 

According to a report published by Bloomberg, Elon Musk said workers would be expected to work in the office for at least 40 hours a week. 

Meanwhile, by “hardcore ” Elon Musk wants Twitter staff to inculcate his work philosophy as he likes to think or call himself “Hardcore”. 

On several occasions, he has claimed to work more than 100 hours a week and sometimes sleeps at the office. 

Similarly, reports also have it that Elon Musk has been sleeping in his office at Twitter in recent weeks while managing his other companies, electric vehicle maker Tesla and rocket company SpaceX from Twitter Headquarters.  

His work philosophy includes bringing a small team of highly motivated and capable staff together. 

Since Elon Musk bought twitter on the 28th of October 2022, he has introduced a number of changes which include the Twitter blue verification and its associated fee. 

He raised the verification checkmark to $7.99 from $4.99 and also make it a buying stock unlike how it was exclusively reserved for public figures, brands, politicians, sports persons, and journalists among others. 

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Twitter to Get New “Leader” as Elon Musk Pledges More Working Time to Tesla

Tesla investors have been increasingly concerned about the time that Musk is devoting to Twitter at the expense of Tesla whose stock value has fallen by almost 49 percent.

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Elon Musk and Twitter

Twitter’s new owner and Tesla CEO, Elon Musk has disclosed that he will be dedicating more time to Tesla as Twitter is about to have a new “Leader”, Elon Musk said while testifying in a Delaware court yesterday. 

It could be recalled that soon after Musk completed the acquisition of Twitter in October 2022, he fired the company’s previous chief executive and other senior leaders. 

A week after, he retrenched half of the workforce at the microblogging platform. 

Elon Musk who also doubled as the world’s richest man has been running the social media giant ever since. A development that has unsettled a number of Tesla investors.

Tesla investors have been increasingly concerned about the time that Musk is devoting to Twitter at the expense of Tesla whose stock value has fallen by almost 49 percent.

However, at the court on Wednesday, the tech billionaire noted that he will “reduce his time at Twitter and eventually find a new leader” to run the social media company.

“There’s an initial burst of activity needed post-acquisition to reorganise the company,” Musk was quoted by Reuters. “But then I expect to reduce my time at Twitter,” he added. 

Meanwhile, Elon Musk’s leadership at Twitter so far has been marred with a lot of controversies, changes, opposition and backlashes. 

He had initially disclosed that he would increase Twitter’s monthly subscription fee for verified accounts to $20. A development that was strongly opposed by some users.  However, his gesture to settle for $8 also met some opposition. 

Similarly, many big brands such as Ford, Volkswagen, General Motors, United Airlines and a host of others have suspended paid advertisements on the Twitter platform pending when they will have a clear direction of where Musk is taking Twitter. 

The brands have alleged that Elon Musk intends to open the social media platform to hate speech while Musk himself has hinted to reactivate some suspended Twitter accounts including Donald Trump’s. 

 

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