Sun Valley Scene: Jeff Bezos Shows Up, The Murdochs Don’t And Shopify, Stripe Chiefs Impress

A funny thing happened on the way to Sun Valley this year. Despite predictions that turnout for the annual Allen & Co. conference would be lighter after last year’s COVID-forced cancellation, attendance at the three morning sessions on the first full day of the gathering was strong and included the mega-mogul of the moment, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos.

Jeff Bezos To Step Down As Amazon CEO On July 5

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos will step down as CEO on July 5, the tech giant announced on Wednesday morning at its annual shareholder meeting. Bezos will hand the chief executive title off to Andy Jassy, a longtime Amazon executive who runs the company’s multibillion dollar cloud business. Bezos is expected to still be heavily involved with the tech giant, however, as he moves into his new role as executive chairman of Amazon.

Bezos Tops Forbes List Of Billionaires

Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos has topped Forbes’s annual world’s billionaire list for the fourth consecutive year, Reuters reported. This year’s billionaires are worth a combined $13.1 trillion, up from $8 trillion last year, according to Forbes. This year’s list has 493 newcomers, including dating app Bumble’s CEO Whitney Wolfe Herd. Tesla CEO Elon Musk comes in second on the list, jumping from the 31st spot last year. Rounding out the top five are LVMH CEO Bernard Arnualt, Microsoft founder Bill Gates and Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerburg.

Jeff Bezos Stepping Down As Amazon CEO

Amazon said he’ll be replaced in the fall by Andy Jassy, who runs Amazon’s cloud business. Bezos will then become the company’s executive chairman.

The 5 Biggest Little Lies Tech CEOs Told Congress

No, Google, we’re not really in control of our data. And yes, Facebook, you profit from harmful information.

Tech Hearing Suggests Antitrust Crackdown Could Come Soon

Analysis: heated exchanges raise concern over anticompetitive behavior as chair warns of companies’ “monopoly power.”

Why The Tech Giants May Suffer Lasting Pain From Their Hill Lashing

Lawmakers investigating Facebook, Amazon, Google and Apple made it clear that their allegations of antitrust abuses come with a lengthy paper trail.

House Batters Tech CEOs, Don’t Land Many Blows

Invective flew Wednesday as legislators questioned Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg, Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, Sundar Pichai of Google and Tim Cook of Apple at a hearing of the House Judiciary subcommittee on antitrust. For the last year, that panel has probed the business practices of the Silicon Valley giants with an eye to determining if they need to be regulated more heavily, or even broken up.

UPDATED, WEDNESDAY, 5:54 PM ET

4 Big Tech CEOs Get Grilled By Congress

The powerful executives sought to defend their companies amid intense grilling by lawmakers on Wednesday. The executives provided bursts of data showing how competitive their markets are, and the value of their innovation and essential services to consumers. But they sometimes struggled to answer pointed questions about their business practices. They also confronted a range of other concerns about alleged political bias, their effect on U.S. democracy and their role in China.

Spotlight On 4 Big Tech CEOs Testifying Wed.

On Wednesday, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg, Google’s Sundar Pichai and Tim Cook of Apple will answer for their companies’ practices before Congress for the first time as a group. Summoned for a House hearing, they’ll raise a hand (remotely) and swear to tell the truth, in the manner of tycoons of Wall Street or the tobacco industry in earlier high-octane televised shamings.

National Enquirer Lawyer Denies Tabloid Extorted Jeff Bezos

An attorney representing American Media Inc. CEO David Pecker says his client did not engage in extortion or blackmail against Amazon founder Jeff Bezos. Speaking on ABC’s This Week on Sunday, attorney Elkan Abramowitz said the primary source for the Enquirer’s investigation into Bezos’ love life was a longtime tipster for the tabloid magazine.

NEWS ANALYSIS

Jeff Bezos Can Sue The Pants Off National Enquirer

A lawsuit could change the way we think about privacy in the digital age. Privacy is not quite dead. For egregious cases, there are remedies lying ready to hand in the civil law of torts, at least for the case that Bezos might want to bring against AMI.

Prosecutors Probing Enquirer After Bezos Report

Federal prosecutors are looking into the National Enquirer’s handling of a story about Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos’ extramarital affair to see if the tabloid’s publisher violated a cooperation agreement with prosecutors, the Associated Press reported on Friday.

Bezos Accuses National Enquirer Of Extortion

Bezos, who is also owner of The Washington Post, detailed his interactions with American Media Inc., or AMI, in an extraordinary blog post Thursday on Medium.com. The billionaire did not say the tabloid was seeking money — instead, he said, the Enquirer wanted him to make a public statement that the tabloid’s coverage was not politically motivated.

Sun Valley Buzz About Jeff Bezos, Bob Iger

Jeff Bezos had the Allen & Co. conference crowd in Sun Valley, Idaho, transfixed on Thursday morning as the Amazon CEO spoke about the evolution of his company, what he looks for in leaders, and his ambitious plan to develop the world of outer space for the betterment of humanity. Several attendees made mention of what one described as a “baller move” by Disney chief Bob Iger to take his breakfast at a prominent front table with Fox’s Rupert Murdoch and Lachlan Murdoch and Rupert’s wife, Jerry Hall.

COMMENTARY BY ALEX PAREENE

Billionaires Are Transforming American Media

The American media landscape, like the rest of the country, is being reshaped by the whims of the ultra-rich

Tech Boosts WaPo’s Financial Performance

Before Jeff Bezos, the Amazon CEO and e-commerce visionary, bought The Washington Post in 2013, the Post was losing revenue and its losses were widening, as it struggled to find income to replace its decline in print ads. The Post is now privately owned and doesn’t discuss specific figures, but says revenue and profits are up, as subscribers grow and digital ad revenue increases. Its monthly web traffic has grown 56%, to 78.7 million over the past two years, according to ComScore.

Bezos Gives $1M To Support Press Freedom

The Reporters Committee for the Freedom of the Press on Tuesday night announced a $1 million donation from Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, the biggest gift from an individual in the organization’s 46-year history.

Amazon’s Bezos Passes Buffett On Richest List

NEW YORK (AP) — A rough day on Wall Street for Warren Buffett means Amazon’s Jeff Bezos is now the third richest person in the world. Bloomberg’s billionaire index shows Buffett lost more than $754 million Thursday, thanks to a slide in shares of his company, Berkshire Hathaway. Bezos lost $136 million, but at the […]

COMMENTARY BY REM RIEDER

No Tough Questions For Bezos on ’60 Minutes’

If the ’60 Minutes’ segment Sunday night on Amazon had been a drone, you’d have to say it badly missed its target. Rieder argues the news program gave Amazon a prime platform, but no tough questions, especially about the numerous logistical and regulatory issues facing the use of drones.

Big Data Is A Very Big Deal To Local Media

As local media companies eye the potential of big data for deepening their engagement with audiences and advertisers, they are learning just how messy, expensive, incremental and imperfect the process can be. In the first of a three-part special report on local media and big data, NetNewsCheck looks at the promise and challenges of this fast-changing field.

Bezos Completes Washington Post Purchase

The Washington Post Co. said Tuesday that it had completed the sale of the newspaper publishing business to Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, who said in August he was buying it for $250 million.

When Will Big Data Come to Local Media?

What does Jeff Bezos’ purchase of The Washington Post mean for local media companies? The Amazon.com founder knows how to user the data collected on users to his advantage and create relationships, and with the Post he can show other local papers, TV and radio stations how to use data to their advantage. Media strategist Mark Ramsey: “The relationship business is the problem-solving business. And before you can solve problems you need to know what the problems are, how to solve them, and who needs them solved.”

UPDATED, MONDAY, 11:35 P.M. ET

Amazon’s Bezos Buys The Washington Post

The Washington Post Co. announced Monday afternoon that it has agreed to sell its newspaper publishing businesses for $250 million to Amazon.com founder Jeff Bezos. The sale will end four generations of family ownership at the newspaper. The company will retain its six television stations and the Kaplan educational businesses and will be changing its name in connection with the transaction.