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October 15, 2019
Ben and James discuss the NBA and Apple in China and the long-term implications of doing business with authoritarian governments. Links Ben Thompson: The China Cultural Clash — Stratechery r/HongKong: List Of Companies Under China’s Censorship Orders (So Far). Credit To U/Lebe — Reddit Sam Dastyari Quits As Labor Senator Over China Connections — The Guardian Rejected three times due to fear of Beijing, controversial book on China’s secret influence will finally be published — Business Insider Ethan Strauss: Can Steve Kerr and the NBA do better on China? — The Athletic Ben Thompson: Apple Pulls Hong Kong App, Tim … Continue reading Episode 175 — The Abyss Stares Back
October 5, 2019
Ben and James discuss Facebook from multiple angles, including child sexual abuse material, encryption, Oculus, and a leaked all-hands meeting.   Links Ben Thompson: Friction — Stratechery The Internet Is Overrun With Images of Child Sexual Abuse. What Went Wrong? — New York Times Ben Thompson: Child Sexual Abuse Material Online, The Problem With Community, Towards More Friction — Stratechery Casey Newton: Read The Full Transcript of Mark Zuckerberg’s Leaked Internal Facebook Meetings — The Verge Ben Thompson: Facebook’s All-Hands Leak, Facebook Versus Warren, Zuckerberg’s Culture — Stratechery Attorney General Bill Barr Will Ask Zuckerberg To Halt Plans For End-To-End … Continue reading Episode 174 — Distracted at Facebook
September 20, 2019
Ben and James discuss Cloudflare and what it is like going through an IPO, as well as what has gone wrong with WeWork.   Links Ben Thompson: Netflix and the Conservation of Attractive Profits — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Cloudflare’s S-1 — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: AWS and the Impact on Venture Capital — Stratechery Ben Thompson: WeWork Delays IPO — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: The WeWork IPO — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Why WeWork Isn’t AWS — Stratechery Ben Thompson: What Is a Tech Company? — Stratechery Hosts   Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review … Continue reading Episode 173 — The Exponent IPO
June 13, 2019
Ben and James discuss WWDC keynote and why it was so important for Apple to move past the iPhone.   Links Ben Thompson: Apple’s Audacity — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Apple’s Middle Age — Stratechery Letter from Tim Cook to Apple investors — Apple Ben Thompson: Strategy Credit — Stratechery Updates to the App Store Guidelines — Apple Ben Thompson: Antitrust, the App Store, and Apple — Stratechery Hosts   Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review   Podcast Information   Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter Feedback
May 24, 2019
Ben and James discuss the U.S.-China trade war and the fundamental issues facing both countries generally and tech specifically. Links Ben Thompson: China, Leverage, and Values — Stratechery We Were Pirates, Too — Foreign Policy How China Uses High-Tech Surveillance to Subdue Minorities — New York Times Ben Thompson: The Pollyannish Assumption — Stratechery Ben Thompson: More on Values (and Facebook) — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: Open, Closed, and Privacy — Stratechery Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter Feedback
May 10, 2019
Ben and James discuss the Zoom and Slack IPOs in the context of Microsoft’s current success and long-term challenges. Links Ben Thompson: Microsoft, Slack, Zoom, and the SaaS Opportunity — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The State of Technology at the End of 2018 — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Google Fights Back — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The End of Windows — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Microsoft’s Earnings, Microsoft’s Growth Opportunities — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Microsoft Build, Microsoft’s Strategic Clarity, An Interview with Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Cost of Developers — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Google Fights Back — Stratechery Geoffrey Moore: … Continue reading Episode 170 — A Perfect Meal
April 19, 2019
Ben and James discuss Disney’s recent announcements on streaming and what it says about not just TV but strategy broadly in the Internet era. Links Ben Thompson: Disney and the Future of TV — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Disney and the Value of the Consumer Relationship, Disney’s Consolidation of Hulu, Comcast and AT&T — Stratechery Daily Update Disney CEO Bob Iger Unveils Details on Disney+ Streaming Service — CNBC Ben Thompson: Airbnb and the Internet Revolution — Stratechery Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter Feedback
April 12, 2019
Ben and James discuss why Internet regulation is coming, why it is probably necessary, and how it should be targeted. Links Ben Thompson: A Regulatory Framework for the Internet — Stratechery New Livestreaming Legislation Fails to Take Into Account How the Internet Actually Works — The Conversation Out of the Clouds and Into the Weeds: Cloudflare’s Approach to Abuse in New Products — Cloudflare Unpacking the Stack and Addressing Complaints about Content — Cloudflare Ben Thompson: Mark Zuckerberg’s Proposal, The Copyright Directive and Sunk Costs, You Say You Want Some Regulation — Stratechery Daily Update Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery … Continue reading Episode 168 — A Community of Loonies
April 5, 2019
Ben and James discuss the question of YouTube, why it’s similar and different from Facebook, and why engagement is both alluring and a potential problem. Links YouTube Executives Ignored Warnings, Letting Toxic Videos Run Rampant — Bloomberg Ben Thompson: Apple’s Services Event — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Mark Zuckerberg’s Proposal, The Copyright Directive and Sunk Costs — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: YouTube and Toxic Videos, YouTube’s Problematic Incentives, Sins of Omission and Commission — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: Friction — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Pollyannish Assumption — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Wall Street Journal and Apple News, The Problem with Regulating … Continue reading Episode 167 — YouTube and the End of Friction
March 15, 2019
Ben and James discuss Senator Warren’s proposal to break up Big Tech, including why its history is wrong, why details matter, and what needs to be done instead. Plus, Spotify’s antitrust complaint against Apple. Links Senator Elizabeth Warren: Here’s how we can break up Big Tech — Medium Ben Thompson: Where Warren’s Wrong — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Amazon’s Price Parity Provision, The Amazon Marketplace Question — Stratechery Daily Update Five Fast Facts About Apple’s Anti-competitive Behavior — Time To Play Fair (Spotify Website) Ben Thompson: Spotify Files Antitrust Complaint Against Apple, Spotify and Warren, More Amazon Marketplace Changes — Stratechery Daily … Continue reading Episode 166 — Fence-building vs. Axe-wielding
March 8, 2019
Ben and James discuss Mark Zuckerberg’s latest missive, whether Facebook is actually changing anything, and wonder if the company will ever tell the unvarnished truth. Links Mark Zuckerberg: A Privacy-Focused Vision for Social Networking — Facebook Ben Thompson: Facebook’s Privacy Cake — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Facebook, Phones, and Phonebooks — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Social/Communications Map — Stratechery After an “identity crisis,” Social Capital CEO Chamath Palihapitiya says he’s taught himself how to be happy again — Recode Ben Thompson: The Audacity of Copying Well — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Messaging: Mobile’s Killer App — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Open, Closed, and … Continue reading Episode 165 — Mark Zuckerberg’s Projected Self
March 1, 2019
Ben and James discuss Amazon, Walmart, and groceries, Google Cloud versus AWS, and why understanding value chains helps evaluate business opportunities. Links Ben Thompson: The Value Chain Constraint — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Walmart’s Earnings, Walmart’s Grocery Business, Amazon’s Grocery Stumbles — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: Amazon the Black Swan — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Amazon’s New Customer — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Walmart and the Multichannel Trap — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Google Cloud Changes CEOs, Layers of Surprise (or Not), The VMWare Analogy — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Amazon Tax — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Venture Capital and the Internet’s Impact — … Continue reading Episode 164 — Valuing Value Chains
February 15, 2019
Ben and James discuss Apple News as it is today, where Apple wants to take it in the future, and why publishers should push back. Links Ben Thompson: The Cost of Apple News — Stratechery Ben Thompson: What Direct-to-Consumer Publishers are Selling — Stratechery Daily Update Apple News’s Radical Approach: Humans Over Machines — New York Times Publishers Chafe at Apple’s Terms for Subscription News Service — Wall Street Journal Ben Thompson: Apple Should Buy Netflix — Stratechery The Report of the 2020 Group — New York Times Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast … Continue reading Exponent 163 — Publishers vs Apple News
February 8, 2019
Ben and James discuss Spotify’s move into podcasts and integration and modularity in value chains. Links Ben Thompson: Spotify’s Podcast Aggregation Play — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Lessons From Spotify — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Podcasts, Analytics, and Centralization — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Future of Podcasting — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The BuzzFeed Lesson — Stratechery Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter Feedback
February 1, 2019
Ben and James discuss Apple vs Facebook (and Google!). Links Josh Constine: Facebook Pays Teens to Install VPN That Spies on Them — TechCrunch Facebook’s Onavo Gives Social-Media Firm Inside Peek at Rivals’ Users — Wall Street Journal Ben Thompson: Facebook Versus Apple — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: Manifestos and Monopolies — Stratechery Andrew Bosworth Memo — BuzzFeed Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter Feedback
January 25, 2019
Ben and James discuss Netflix, why it is an Aggregator, and why Disney isn’t actually a competitor Links Ben Thompson: Netflix Flexes — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Netflix and the Conservation of Attractive Profits — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Apple Should Buy Netflix — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Why TV Has Resisted Disruption — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Why Disney and ESPN Will Be OK — Stratechery Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter Feedback
January 19, 2019
Ben and James discuss open source in a cloud world, how enterprise value chains have changed, and AWS versus Microsoft. Links Ben Thompson: AWS, MongoDB, and the Economic Realities of Open Source — Stratechery Ben Thompson: How Google is Challenging AWS — Stratechery Satya Nadella on Microsoft — Stratechery Daily Update Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter Feedback
January 11, 2019
Ben and James discuss Apple’s revenue warning and the company’s shift to services. Links Ben Thompson: Apple’s Errors — Stratechery Letter from Tim Cook to Apple Investors — Apple Ben Thompson: Two Bears — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Apple’s China Problem — Stratechery Ben Thompson: CES and the Unification of Computing and Consumer Electronics, Google Assistant and Integration, The Modular Competition — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: The Android Detour — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Apple Should Buy Netflix — Stratechery Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter Feedback
December 14, 2018
James and Ben talk about the connection between Jobs to be Done and Aggregation Theory, why the consumer and enterprise markets are so different, and discomfort with big companies like Google. Links Ben Thompson: Aggregators and Jobs-to-be-Done — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Scooter Economy — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Aggregation Theory — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Jobs TV Does — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The State of Technology at the End of 2018 — Stratechery Ben Thompson: What Clayton Christensen Got Wrong — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Data Factories — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Slack versus Teams — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Antitrust, the App … Continue reading Episode 157 — Clumping and Clustering
December 1, 2018
Exponent is back, kind of. Ben and James talk about Apple’s case in front of the Supreme Court, and debate whether the company is acting anti-competitively with its App Store policies. Links Ben Thompson: Antitrust, the App Store, and Apple — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Apple App Store Follow-up — Stratechery Daily Update Apple Inc. v. Robert Pepper, et al. oral arguments — Supreme Court of the United States Ben Thompson: Apple’s Middle Age — Stratechery Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter Feedback
September 7, 2018
Exponent is taking a break, for now anyways. We couldn’t be more grateful for everyone that has given us so much of their time. Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter Feedback Presented by WordPress.com
June 8, 2018
Ben and James discuss Microsoft’s acquisition of GitHub. Note: This is the last episode of the season; Exponent will return in the fall Presented by WordPress.com: Get 15% off on a new site by visiting WordPress.com/Exponent. Links Ben Thompson: The Cost of Developers — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The End of Windows — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Redmond and Reality — Stratechery Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter Feedback Presented by WordPress.com
May 25, 2018
Ben and James continue their discussion on why aggregators and platforms are different and why it matters for big companies, competitors, and regulators. Presented by WordPress.com: Get 15% off on a new site by visiting WordPress.com/Exponent. Links Ben Thompson: The Bill Gates Line — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Manifestos and Monopolies — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Case Against Google — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: Why Facebook Shouldn’t Be Allowed to Buy tbh — Stratechery Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter Feedback Presented by WordPress.com
May 18, 2018
Ben and James continue to discuss the differences between platforms and aggregators, including Facebook, Microsoft, Apple, Google, Netflix, Amazon, and Uber. Presented by WordPress.com: Get 15% off on a new site by visiting WordPress.com/Exponent. Links Ben Thompson: The Moat Map — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Books and Blogs — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Zillow, Aggregation, and Integration — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Tech’s Two Philosophies — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Casual Gaming is a Sustainable Business, but Not a Platform Differentiator — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Why Doesn’t Apple Enable Sustainable Businesses on the App Store? — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Apple’s China Problem — Stratechery … Continue reading Episode 152 — Platforms Versus Aggregators
May 11, 2018
Ben and James discuss the differences between Facebook, Google, Microsoft and Apple specifically, and the differences between aggregators and platforms generally. Presented by WordPress.com: Get 15% off on a new site by visiting WordPress.com/Exponent. Links Google Duplex Demo — YouTube Ben Thompson: Tech’s Two Philosophies — Stratechery Note: The Steve Jobs videos are in the above article Ben Thompson: Platforms Versus Aggregators — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: Manifestos and Monopolies — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Face is Not the Future — Stratechery Ben Thompson: From Products to Platforms — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Why Doesn’t Apple Enable Sustainable Businesses on the … Continue reading Episode 151 — Two by Twos
May 4, 2018
Ben and James discuss how Apple and Amazon’s focus on the customer experience protects them from low-end disruption. Presented by WordPress.com: Get 15% off on a new site by visiting WordPress.com/Exponent. Links Ben Thompson: Divine Discontent: Disruption’s Antidote — Stratechery Ben Thompson: What Clayton Christensen Got Wrong — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The $550 iPhone 5C Makes Perfect Sense — Stratechery GRAPH: The Disruptive Innovation Model — Harvard Business Review Louis C K: Everything Is Amazing and Nobody is Happy — YouTube Ben Thompson: Why Microsoft’s Reorganization Is a Bad Idea — Stratechery Ben Bajarin: Top Takeaways From Studying iPhone X … Continue reading Episode 150 — Round Numbers
April 27, 2018
Ben and James discuss Zillow’s shift in business model and the further refinement of Aggregation Theory through the incorporation of the ideas of disruption. Presented by WordPress.com: Get 15% off on a new site by visiting WordPress.com/Exponent. Links Ben Thompson: Zillow, Aggregation, and Integration — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Opendoor: A Startup Worth Emulating — Stratechery Episode 098: Shattered Glass — Exponent Ben Thompson: Defining Aggregators — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Aggregation Theory — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Netflix and the Conservation of Attractive Profits — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Truth About Windows Versus the Mac — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Books and Blog … Continue reading Episode 149 — Zillow and Sustaining Aggregation
April 13, 2018
Ben and James discuss Mark Zuckerberg’s appearances before Congress, and try to sort out exactly which Facebook issues matter, and which don’t. Presented by WordPress.com: Get 15% off on a new site by visiting WordPress.com/Exponent. Links Ben Thompson: The Facebook Current — Stratechery Zeynep Tufekci: Why Zuckerberg’s 14-Year Apology Tour Hasn’t Fixed Facebook — Wired Ben Thompson: Fake News — Stratechery The Toutiao Apology — China Media Project Growth At Any Cost: Top Facebook Executive Defended Data Collection In 2016 Memo — And Warned That Facebook Could Get People Killed — BuzzFeed Ben Thompson: The Facebook Brand — Stratechery There’s … Continue reading Episode 148 — Facebook Fatigue
April 6, 2018
Ben and James discuss Microsoft’s reorganization, how Satya Nadella has managed the decline of Windows, and how it applies to Apple and services. Presented by WordPress.com: Get 15% off on a new site by visiting WordPress.com/Exponent. Links Ben Thompson: The End of Windows — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Stratechery 4.0 — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Services, Not Devices — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Curse of Culture — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Truth About Windows and the Mac — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Microsoft’s Monopoly Hangover — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Why Microsoft’s Reorganization Is a Bad Idea — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Redmond and Reality … Continue reading Episode 147 — There’s Always a Bigger Fish
March 23, 2018
Ben and James discuss Facebook’s current crisis, and why almost everyone misunderstands what the company did wrong: the problem isn’t advertising, it was Facebook’s desire to be a platform. Presented by WordPress.com: Get 15% off on a new site by visiting WordPress.com/Exponent. Links James Allworth: What the F*** Was Facebook Thinking — Medium Ben Thompson: The Facebook Brand — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Tim Cook’s Unfair and Unrealistic Privacy Speech — Stratechery Mark Zuckerberg’s Reckoning: ‘This Is a Major Trust Issue’ — The New York Times Ben Thompson: Mobile Makes Facebook Just an App; That’s Good News — Stratechery Nicholas Thompson: … Continue reading Episode 146 — Facebook’s Real Mistake
March 16, 2018
Ben and James discuss President Trump’s intervention in Broadcom’s takeover of Qualcomm, the problem with patents, and whether or not markets inherently overvalue short-term thinking. Presented by WordPress.com: Get 15% off on a new site by visiting WordPress.com/Exponent. Links Ben Thompson: Qualcomm,National Security, and Patents — Stratechery Dr. L. J. Hart-Smith: Out-Sourced Profits — The Cornerstone of Successful Subcontracting — Boeing Paper Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter Feedback Presented by WordPress.com
March 9, 2018
Ben and James discuss Spotify’s F-1, why Spotify isn’t Netflix, and why record companies are doing well even though they are acting sub-optimally. Presented by WordPress.com: Get 15% off on a new site by visiting WordPress.com/Exponent. Links James Allworth: Why I’m Not Going Near Spotify (and Why You Shouldn’t Either) — Harvard Business Review Ben Thompson: Lessons From Spotify — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Great Unbundling — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Could Spotify Be Netlix — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: Spotify’s Increasing Power — Stratechery Daily Update Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes … Continue reading Episode 144 — 90s Alt Forever
March 2, 2018
Ben and James discuss Dropbox’s S-1 and why the company is a success but still a disappointment. Plus, why companies should go public sooner. Presented by WordPress.com: Get 15% off on a new site by visiting WordPress.com/Exponent. Links Ben Thompson: The Dropbox Comp — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Dropbox’s Cost of Revenue — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: Battle of the Box — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Dropbox Leaves AWS — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: Does Uber Have a Strategy Problem — Stratechery Daily Update Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter … Continue reading Episode 143 — Dilly-Dallying Dropbox
February 23, 2018
Ben and James discuss Google’s recent moves around blocking ads and promoting AMP and whether they raise antitrust questions. Plus, why Microsoft couldn’t have stopped Google, and why cryptocurrencies are aggregator kryptonite. NOTE: The previous version of this episode was not edited in the middle. There is no new content in this episode, but it should be easier to listen to. Presented by WordPress.com: Get 15% off on a new site by visiting WordPress.com/Exponent. Links Ben Thompson: The Aggregation Paradox — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Case Against Google — Stratechery Daily Update Charles Duhigg: The Case Against Google — The … Continue reading Episode 142 (Updated) — Google and Antitrust
February 16, 2018
Ben and James answer reader questions. Topics include business school, career advice, the nature of strategy, creating the next Silicon Valley, and how governments should deal with the disruptions caused by the Internet. Presented by WordPress.com: Get 15% off on a new site by visiting WordPress.com/Exponent. Links Ben Thompson: Books to Blogs — Stratechery James Allworth, Karen Dillon, and Clayton Christenson: How Will You Measure Your Life? — ClaytonChristensen.com Ben Thompson: Strategy Credit — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Apple’s Organizational Crossroads — Stratechery Jared Diamond: Guns, Germs, and Steel — W. W. Norton & Company Yuval Noah Harari: Sapiens — HarperCollins … Continue reading Episode 141 — The Mailbag Episode
February 9, 2018
Ben and James discuss Apple’s strategy of monetizing its customer base, how that explains HomePod, and whether or not it is a problem. Presented by WordPress.com: Get 15% off on a new site by visiting WordPress.com/Exponent. Links Ben Thompson: Apple’s Middle Age — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Books to Blogs — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Apple and the Oak Tree — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Lessons and Questions of the iPhone X and the iPhone 8 — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Apple is Not a Services Company — Stratechery Daily Update NOTE: Apple has taken down the supplemental financial information from Q1 2016 … Continue reading Episode 140 — The Products They Built Along the Way
February 2, 2018
Ben and James discuss Amazon’s health care announcement and why the industry is so challenging. Presented by WordPress.com: Get 15% off on a new site by visiting WordPress.com/Exponent. Links Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway and JPMorgan Chase & Co. to partner on U.S. employee healthcare — BusinessWire Ben Thompson: Amazon Health — Stratechery Aaron E. Carroll: The Real Reason the U.S. Has Employer-Sponsored Health Insurance — New York Times The Best Health Care System in the World: Which One Would You Pick? — New York Times Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud … Continue reading Episode 139 — Amazon and Health Care
January 27, 2018
Ben and James discuss Amazon Go and what it says about the economics of tech and how Amazon is building multiple monopolies. Presented by WordPress.com: Get 15% off on a new site by visiting WordPress.com/Exponent. Links Ben Thompson: Amazon Go and the Future — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Amazon Tax — Stratechery Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter Feedback Presented by WordPress.com
January 19, 2018
Ben and James discuss Facebook’s algorithm change, the difference between Facebook and Snapchat, and what the company’s motivations might be. Presented by WordPress.com: Get 15% off on a new site by visiting WordPress.com/Exponent. Links Ben Thompson: Facebook’s Motivations — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Mobile Makes Facebook Just an App; That’s Great News — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Facebook and the Feed — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Facebook, Phones, and Phonebooks — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Popping the Publishing Bubble — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Defining Aggregators — Stratechery Tyler Cowen: A Simple Theory of Moore’s Law and Social Media — Marginal Revolution Farhad Manjoo: It’s … Continue reading Episode 137 — Addicted to Facebook
January 12, 2018
Ben and James discuss the Meltdown and Spectre bugs and what they say about processors, technology, and even society. Presented by WordPress.com: Get 15% off on a new site by visiting WordPress.com/Exponent. Links Ben Thompson: Meltdown, Spectre, and the State of Technology — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Alexa: Amazon’s Operating System — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Arrival of Artificial Intelligence — Stratechery Nicholas Kristof: Why 2017 Was the Best Year in Human History — New York Times Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter Feedback Presented by WordPress.com
December 22, 2017
Ben and James discuss Disney’s recent history, its acquisition of Fox, Netflix’s power, and why more and more policy decisions are about choosing the worst of two options. Note: This episode was recorded on Monday, December 18, 2017. Presented by WordPress.com: Get 15% off on a new site by visiting WordPress.com/Exponent. Links Ben Thompson: Disney and Fox — Stratechery From Intel to Disney — Exponent Ben Thompson: Why Disney and ESPN Will Be OK — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Aggregation Theory — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Netflix and the Conservation of Attractive Profits — Stratechery The Netflix Backlash: Why Hollywood Fears a Content … Continue reading Episode 135 — Two Is Better Than One
December 8, 2017
Ben and James discuss why effective content moderation is so hard, how it can be done, and why it sometimes shouldn’t be. Plus, how tech optimists and tech critics make the exact same mistake. Presented by WordPress.com: Get 15% off on a new site by visiting WordPress.com/Exponent. Links Ben Thompson: The Pollyannish Assumption — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Pollyannish Assumption and Bright Lines, YouTube’s Market Power, Google vs Amazon — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: Tech’s Person of the Year; Uber at the End of 2017; Fowler’s True Impact, and Means — Stratechery Daily Update The Laborers Who Keep Dick … Continue reading Episode 134 — Human Problems
December 2, 2017
Ben and James discuss the net neutrality debate and why both sides of the issue at hand involve making difficult tradeoffs; the bigger problem is broken governance. Please listen to the end! Presented by WordPress.com: Get 15% off on a new site by visiting WordPress.com/Exponent. Links Ben Thompson: Pro-Neutrality, Anti-Title II — Stratechery Ben Thompson: “Light Touch”, Cable, and DSL; The Broadband Tradeoff; The Importance of Antitrust — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Netflix and Net Neutrality — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Net Neutrality and Zero Rating — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: Comcast’s Inevitable Data Caps, T-Mobile Offers Free Video, America Versus … Continue reading Episode 133 — Two Terrible Options
November 17, 2017
Ben and James discuss IPOs, including those of Stitch Fix, SendGrid, and Blue Apron, and the importance of understanding what type of company you are. Presented by WordPress.com: Get 15% off on a new site by visiting WordPress.com/Exponent. Links Ben Thompson: Stitch Fix and the Senate — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Why (Most) IPOs are Under-Price — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: Waze Winners and Losers — Stratechery Ben Thompson: SendGrid IPOs — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Venture Capital and the Internet’s Impact — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Blue Apron Files for IPO — Stratechery Daily Update Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James … Continue reading Episode 132 — Successful Disappointments
November 10, 2017
Ben and James break down the differences between new market and low end disruption and how they apply — or don’t — to Apple and the iPhone. Links Ben Thompson: Apple at Its Best — Stratechery Apple’s iPhone X Parts Cost $115 More Than iPhone 8, IHS Says — Bloomberg Ben Thompson: What Clayton Christensen Got Wrong — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Beyond the iPhone — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Apple’s Organizational Crossroads — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Android Detour — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Apple and the Oak Tree — Stratechery Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review … Continue reading Episode 131 — Head-on is Hard
November 3, 2017
Ben and James walk through the history of Stratechery to explain why Facebook is inescapable for a podcast about tech and society. Links Ben Thompson: Tech Goes to Washington — Stratechery John Gruber: Blackberry vs. iPhone — Daring Fireball (note: I said on the podcast this was written in 2007; it was written in 2008) Ben Thompson: What Clayton Christensen Got Wrong — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The State of Consumer Technology at the End of 2014 — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Peak Google — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Revisiting Peak Google, Again — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: More Spectacles Mea Culpas — … Continue reading Episode 130 — The 50,000 Foot View
October 27, 2017
Ben and James discuss why acquisitions should be the focus of tech regulators in the context of Facebook buying tbh today, and Instagram and WhatsApp previously. Links Ben Thompson: Why Facebook Shouldn’t Be Allowed to Buy TBH — Stratechery Marco Arment: The Impossible Dream of USB-C — Marco.org Ben Thompson: Peak Google — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Mobile Makes Facebook Just an App; That’s Great News — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Revisiting Peak Google, Again — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: Defining Aggregators — Stratechery Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter … Continue reading Episode 129 — The Disruption Antidote
October 20, 2017
Ben and James discuss the structure that leads to gatekeepers and abusers like Harvey Weinstein, and why it is so dangerous to accept as fact that the world was better before the Internet. Links Ben Thompson: Goodbye Gatekeepers — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Gatekeepers Follow-Up, Hollywood and Venture Capital — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: The Justin Caldbeck Affair, The Enablers — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: Venture Capital and the Internet’s Impact — Stratechery Ben Thompson: In Defense of the New York Times — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Voters Decide — Stratechery As U.S. Confronts Internet’s Disruptions, China Feels Vindicated … Continue reading Episode 128 — Counterfactuals
October 13, 2017
Ben and James discuss Facebook and where both its critics and executives go wrong. It’s time for everyone to consider the worst-case scenarios. NOTE: We unfortunately had significant audio issues this week on both sides (which, by the way, had nothing to do with the cut cable referenced in the podcast ). Our apologies. Presented by MailChimp Links Ben Thompson: Defining Aggregators — Stratechery This is why tech companies won’t disclose content of Russian ads — The Outline Ben Thompson: Trustworthy Networking — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Manifestos and Monopolies — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Voters Decide — Stratechery The Barriers … Continue reading Episode 127 — The Worst-Case Scenario
September 29, 2017
Ben and James discuss the development of theory, why blogs have disrupted books, and why too many in tech are too pessimistic about humanity. Presented by MailChimp Links Ben Thompson: Defining Aggregators — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Aggregation Theory — Stratechery Ben Thompson: More Aggregators — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: Netflix and the Conservation of Attractive Profits — Stratechery Ben Thompson: TV Advertising’s Surprising Strength — and Inevitable Fall — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Books and Blogs — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Friction — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Twitter’s Marketing Problem — Stratechery Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review … Continue reading Episode 126 — Getting to the Future Faster
September 22, 2017
Ben and James discuss the different levels of aggregation, Facebook and Russian ads, and why it’s worth defending the future. Presented by MailChimp Links Ben Thompson: The Super-Aggregators and the Russians — Stratechery Facebook Enabled Advertisers to Reach ‘Jew Haters’ — ProPublica Ben Thompson: Inspired Media — Stratechery James Allworth: Technology Has Become Water — Medium Sheryl Sandberg on Facebook Advertising Changes — Facebook Dollar Shave Club and the Disruption of Everything — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Everything is Changing; So Should Antitrust — Stratechery Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud … Continue reading Episode 125 — The Super-Aggregators
September 15, 2017
Ben and James discuss Apple’s the cellular Apple Watch, the iPhone X and 8 markets, and whether the opening was over-the-top. Presented by MailChimp Links Episode 018: Agree to Disagree — Exponent Ben Thompson: The Lessons and Questions of the iPhone X and the iPhone 8 — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Cellular Apple Watch — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: Apple Watch: Asking Why and Saying No — Stratechery Ben Thompson: What I Got Wrong About Apple Watch — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Beyond the iPhone — Stratechery Wearable Fitness Devices Don’t Seem to Make You Fitter — New York Times Ben … Continue reading Episode 124 — The Watch, The Phone, The Beatles
September 8, 2017
Ben and James discuss the why it is Ben can’t stop talking about Aggregation Theory, and the future of regulation. Presented by MailChimp Links Episode 016: Naked People (James first trip to Burning Man) — Exponent Ben Thompson: Everything is Changing; So Should Antitrust — Stratechery Ben Thompson: TV Advertising’s Strength — and Inevitable Fall — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Ad Agencies and Accountability — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Paypal’s Incentive Problem — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Aggregation Theory — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Dollar Shave Club and the Disruption of Everything — Stratechery Episode 005: The World Has Changed — Exponent Ben Thompson: Antitrust and … Continue reading Episode 123 — There Is No Going Back
August 26, 2017
Ben and James discuss the Theory of the Conservation of Attractive Profits, Intel, Netflix, and how it all applies to Disney. Presented by MailChimp Links Ben Thompson: Disney’s Choice — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Disney Follow-up — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: Aggregation Theory — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Netflix and the Conservation of Attractive Profits — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Truth about Windows Versus the Mac — Stratechery Ben Thompson: ESPN: From Franchise to Business — Stratechery Daily Update Warren Buffett: 1991 Letter to Shareholders — Berkshire Hathaway Ben Thompson: Netflix Goes Global — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: Correction the Netflix … Continue reading Episode 122 — From Intel to Disney
August 18, 2017
Ben and James discuss Benchmark’s lawsuit against Uber and Cloudfare’s ban of Daily Stormer. Presented by MailChimp Links Ben Thompson: The Uber Dilemma — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Venture Capital and the Internet’s Impact — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Apple and the Oak Tree — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Waymo’s Lawsuit Against Uber — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: Does Uber Have a Strategy Problem? — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: Crisis at Uber — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: Cloudfare and Daily Stormer — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: Facebook Content Guidelines — Stratechery Daily Update Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, … Continue reading Episode 121 — The Uber Mutation
June 30, 2017
Ben and James discuss the European Commission’s antitrust ruling against Google and the challenges of antitrust in a world governed by Aggregation Theory. Presented by MailChimp Links Ben Thompson: Ends, Means, and Antitrust — Stratechery Episode 005: The World Has Changed — Exponent Ben Thompson: Antitrust and Aggregation — Stratechery Press Release — European Commission Fact Sheet — European Commission Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter Feedback Presented by MailChimp
June 23, 2017
Ben and James discuss Amazon’s acquisition of Whole Foods, when acquisitions make sense, and the potential future of antitrust law. Presented by MailChimp Links Ben Thompson: Amazon’s New Customer — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Acquisitions and Network Effects, Antitrust and Network Effects, The Saga of Whole Foods — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: The Amazon Tax — Stratechery Tom Foster: The Shelf Life of John Mackey — Texas Monthly Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter Feedback Presented by MailChimp
June 16, 2017
Ben and James discuss the business of podcasting specifically and advertising generally, and why Apple’s recent changes will have less of an effect than people think. Presented by MailChimp Links Ben Thompson: Podcasts, Analytics, and Centralization — Stratechery Episode 082: A Podcast About Podcasts — Exponent Ben Thompson: Aggregation Theory — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Patreon’s Update — Stratechery Daily Update Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter Feedback Presented by MailChimp
June 9, 2017
Ben and James discuss Apple’s WWDC keynote, playing to your strengths, and privacy that matters. Presented by MailChimp Links Ben Thompson: Apple’s Strengths and Weaknesses — Stratechery IAMA Foxconn insider with information on next 12 months of hardware updates — Reddit Ben Thompson: Apple’s Organizational Crossroads — Stratechery How Apple’s Siri Lost Her Mojo — Wall Street Journal Zac Cichy on Apple and Privacy — Twitter Ben Thompson: Strategy Credit — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Tim Cook’s Unfair and Unrealistic Privacy Speech, Strategy Credits, The Privacy Priority Problem — Stratechery Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information … Continue reading Episode 117 — Fruitful Clapping
May 26, 2017
Ben and James discuss myths, culture, and blockchains — and yes, bubbles. NOTE: The original version had a corrupted file. Our apologies. Presented by MailChimp Links Ben Thompson: Tulips, Myths, and Cryptocurrencies — Stratechery Abhishek Chakravarty: The Product Manager’s guide to the Blockchain  — Medium Yuval Noah Harari: Sapiens Fred Ehrsam: Blockchain Tokens and the dawn of the Decentralized Business Model — Coinbase Blog Greeks are Rushing to Bitcoin — CNN Facebook accused of targeting ‘insecure’ children and young people, report says — Mashable Ben Thompson: The Cost of Bitcoin — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Selling Feelings — Stratechery Hosts Ben Thompson, … Continue reading Episode 116 — Blockchain Beauty Contest
May 19, 2017
Ben and James discuss Google I/O, the importance of business relative to technology, and why Uber is in trouble. Presented by MailChimp Links Ben Thompson: Boring Google — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Google’s Go-to-Market — Stratechery How Uber and Waymo Ended Up Rivals in the Race for Driverless Cars — New York Times Ben Thompson: Does Uber Have a Strategy Problem? — Stratechery Daily Update Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter Feedback Presented by MailChimp
May 12, 2017
Ben and James discuss why figuring out a new model means abandoning the old, this time in the context of newspapers and news. Presented by MailChimp Links Ben Thompson: The Local News Business Model — Stratechery Jim Rutenberg: Ad Buyers Have a Say in Whether Real News Survives — New York Times Ben Thompson: Wikitribune — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: Why BuzzFeed is the Most Important News Organization in the World — Stratechery Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter Feedback Presented by MailChimp
May 5, 2017
Ben and James discuss how leverage shifts in a value chain, why WeChat is so powerful in China, and why that is a problem for Apple. Presented by MailChimp Links Ben Thompson: Apple’s China Problem — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Messaging: Mobile’s Killer App — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Slack and the State of Technology at the End of 2015 — Stratechery Connie Chan: When One App Rules Them All: The Case of WeChat and Mobile in China — a16z Ben Thompson: Peak Google — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Beyond Disruption — Stratechery James Allworth: The Blessing of Failure — Medium Ben Thompson: The State … Continue reading Episode 113 — WeChat, China, and Apple
April 28, 2017
Ben and James discuss whether or not monopolies are good, the differences between education and healthcare, and how to build an economy of the future. Presented by MailChimp Links Episode 012: The Internet Rainforest — Exponent Episode 005: The World Has Changed — Exponent Ben Thompson: Not OK, Google — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Facebook and the Cost of Monopoly — Stratechery How Google Eats a Business Whole — The Outline Meet the Google Alum Who Created China’s Facebook-Groupon Mashup — Bloomberg Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter Feedback Presented … Continue reading Episode 112 — It’s Complicated
April 21, 2017
Ben and James discuss what it means if Facebook is a monopoly, what is lost if it is, and why there isn’t anything that can be done about it — for now. Presented by MailChimp Links Ben Thompson: The Facebook Epoch — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Facebook and the Cost of Monopoly — Stratechery Kurt Gessler: Facebook’s algorithm isn’t surfacing one-third of our posts. And it’s getting worse — Medium Ben Thompson: Manifestos and Monopolies — Stratechery Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter Feedback Presented by MailChimp
April 14, 2017
James and Ben discuss moral hazard and what seems to be going wrong with the U.S. economy, the different kinds of regulation, and how the App Store explains government policy. Presented by MailChimp Links James Allworth: Prioritizing Economics is Crippling the U.S. Economy — Medium Ryne Rohla: Creating a National Precinct Map — Decision Desk HQ Jeff Bezos: Annual Letter to Shareholders — SEC Matt Stoller: How Democrats Killed Their Populist Soul — The Atlantic Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter Feedback Presented by MailChimp
April 7, 2017
Ben and James discuss Apple’s Mac Pro screw-up and what it might say about the company and its culture. Presented by MailChimp Links John Gruber: The Mac Pro Lives — Daring Fireball Jay Yarow: Phil Schiller on Apple’s Ad Agency in an Email — Business Insider Ben Thompson: Whither Liberal Arts — Stratechery Apple iPad Air Ad — YouTube Steve Jobs After the GarageBand Demo During the Introduction of the iPad 2 — YouTube Ben Thompson: Apple’s Organizational Crossroads — Stratechery Ben Thompson: From Products to Platforms — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Why Doesn’t Apple Enable Sustainable Business on the App … Continue reading Episode 109 — Screw-ups Are Fun!
March 31, 2017
Ben and James discuss the meaning of artificial intelligence, whether machine learning qualifies, and a platform for dealing with the impact. Presented by MailChimp Links Chris Dixon: How Aristotle Created the Computer — The Atlantic Ben Thompson: The Arrival of Artificial Intelligence — Stratechery Dan Primack: Takeaways from Steve Mnuchins Axios Interview — Axios Maureen Dowd: Elon Musk’s Billion-Dollar Crusade to Stop the A.I. Apocalypse — Vanity Fair The Most Common Jobs in Every State — NPR At Blackrock, Machines Are Rising over Managers to Pick Stocks — [The New York Times](http://www.nytimes.com/2017/03/28/business/dealbook/blackrock-actively-managed- Ben Thompson: Verizon, AOL, Facebook Instant Articles, and … Continue reading Episode 108 — Statistics Gone Wild
March 24, 2017
Ben and James discuss the concept of The Smiling Curve and how it applies to various industries. Then, where value might be found in self-driving cars, and why both Uber and Google are getting it wrong. Presented by MailChimp Links Ben Thompson: Aggregation Theory — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Publishers and the Smiling Curve — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Intel, Mobileye, and Smiling Curves — Stratechery Episode 012: The Internet Rainforest — Exponent “After SO many years of being lost, we finally have Aaliyah’s performance of ‘Try Again’ on Jay Leno. This is RARE as fuck.” — Twitter Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, … Continue reading Episode 107 — Smiling Curves and Self-Driving Cars
March 10, 2017
Ben and James discuss Uber’s recent scandals, and debate whether the company’s business actions can be separated from its culture. Presented by MailChimp Links Susan Fowler Rigetti: Reflecting on One Very, Very Strange Year at Uber — SusanJFowler.com Ben Thompson: The Uber Conflation — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Crisis at Uber, Uber’s Culture, Who is Responsible? — Stratechery Daily Update Brad Stone: The Upstarts — Hachette Book Group Ben Thompson: Tech Morality — Stratechery Daily Update Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter Feedback Presented by MailChimp
February 24, 2017
Ben and James discuss Mark Zuckerberg’s manifesto, the problem with regulation, and why Facebook needs exactly that. Presented by MailChimp Links Mark Zuckerberg: Building Global Community — Facebook Ben Thompson: Manifestos and Monopolies — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Inspired Media — Stratechery James Allworth: Founders and Motivation — Stratechery The Ezra Klein Podcast: Tim Wu’s Interesting, Unusual, Fascinating Life — Panoply Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter Feedback Presented by MailChimp
February 17, 2017
Ben and James compare Snap and Facebook to Apple and Microsoft, and worry that Snap’s business is misaligned. Presented by MailChimp Links Ben Thompson: Snap’s Apple Strategy — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Truth About Windows Versus the Mac — Stratechery Ben Thompson: What Clayton Christensen Got Wrong — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Audacity of Copying Well — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Aggregation Theory — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Snapchat Spectacles and the Future of Wearables — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Old-Fashioned Snapchat — Stratechery Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter Feedback Presented by … Continue reading Episode 104 — Snap’s Gingerbread Strategy
February 3, 2017
Ben and James discuss what kind of politicians and products cut through in the Internet age, and why they are profoundly different than what worked before. Presented by MailChimp Links Ben Thompson: Inspired Media — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Voters Decide — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Friction — Stratechery James Allworth: The U.S. has Gone F&*%ing Mad — Medium Ben Thompson on How to Make It in the Media in 2016 — The Ezra Klein Show Journalism That Stands Apart — New York TimesTh Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter … Continue reading Episode 103 — Dull Knives Don’t Cut
January 27, 2017
Ben and James discuss the history of messaging apps, the rise of Snapchat, and why Instagram Stories was such a brilliant move. NOTE: The original audio file had a problem at the 36:50 mark; if you encounter this, please delete the file from your podcast app and re-download. Presented by MailChimp Links Ben Thompson: The Audacity of Copying Well — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Snapchat’s Ladder — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Facebook, Phones, and Phonebooks — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Snapchat User Growth Concerns, What Makes Snapchat Valuable? — Stratechery Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information … Continue reading Episode 102 — Snakes and Ladders
January 20, 2017
Ben and James discuss why different types of media have responded to the Internet with varying degrees of success. Presented by MailChimp Links Ben Thompson: The Great Unbundling — Stratechery Chris Dixon: How Bundling Benefits Sellers and Buyers — cdixon blog The Netflix Backlash: Why Hollywood Fears a Content Monopoly — Hollywood Reporter Ben Thompson: Netflix and the Conservation of Attractive Profits — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Jobs That TV Does — Stratechery James Allworth: The Blessing of Failure — Medium Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter Feedback Presented … Continue reading Episode 101 — TV is the Oak Tree
January 13, 2017
Ben and James celebrate two milestones: 10 years for the iPhone, and 100 episodes for Exponent. This is a good one: it in many respects summarizes the entire run of both Exponent and Stratechery. Presented by MailChimp Links Ben Thompson: The Ten Year Anniversary of the Apple TV — Stratechery Ben Thompson: What Clayton Christensen Got Wrong — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Beyond Disruption — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Shameless Samsung — Stratechery Ben Thompson: How Apple Creates Leverage, and the Future of Apple Pay — Stratechery Ben Thompson: From Products to Platforms — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Friction — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The … Continue reading Episode 100 — The Anniversary Episode: iPhone and Exponent
January 6, 2017
Ben and James discuss Amazon Alexa and the history of operating systems Presented by MailChimp Links Is That an Echo? — Exponent Episode 070 Ben Thompson — The Amazon Tax We Have Always Been at War with Amazon — Exponent Episode 081 Ben Thompson: Alexa: Amazon’s Operating System — Stratechery Voice Recognition Technology — YouTube Ben Thompson: The Truth About Windows Versus the Mac — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Aggregation Theory — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Beyond Disruption — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Mobile Makes Facebook Just an App; That’s Great News — Stratechery James Allworth: The Blessing of Failure — Medium Hosts … Continue reading Episode 099 — Fate Has a Sense of Irony
December 16, 2016
Ben and James discuss real estate and Opendoor, and the types of startups that will succeed in the future. Presented by MailChimp Links Ben Thompson: Opendoor: A Startup Worth Emulating — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Zillow Acquires Trulia — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: Google Self-Driving Cars = Waymo — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: Google, Uber, and the Evolution of Transportation-As-A-Service — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Aggregation Theory — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Netflix and the Conservation of Attractive Profits — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The State of Technology at the End of 2016 — Stratechery Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, … Continue reading Episode 098 — Shattered Glass
December 2, 2016
Ben and James discuss cloud computing and why Google fell behind AWS, and how the company is taking a very wise strategy in catching up. Note: Due to a recording error Ben’s track quality is poor. Our apologies. Presented by MailChimp Links Ben Thompson: How Google is Challenging AWS — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Amazon Re:Invent, Google vs AWS vs IBM vs Microsoft — Stratechery Daily Update Steve Yegge: Stevey’s Google Platforms Rant — Google Plus Ben Thompson: The Amazon Tax — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Apple’s Organizational Crossroads — Stratechery Transcript: @Chamath At StrictlyVC’s Insider Series — Semil Shah Blog Ben … Continue reading Episode 097 — Google Versus AWS
November 18, 2016
Ben and James discuss the fake news epidemic on Facebook, from its structural causes to its effects. Then, Facebook committed sins of omission; the tech industry ought not do the same. Presented by MailChimp Links Ben Thompson: Fake News — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Aggregation Theory — Stratechery How Teens In The Balkans Are Duping Trump Supporters With Fake News — BuzzFeed Facebook fake-news writer: ‘I think Donald Trump is in the White House because of me’ — Washington Post Ben Thompson: Friction — Stratechery Viral Fake Election News Outperformed Real News On Facebook In Final Months Of The US Election — BuzzFeed … Continue reading Episode 096 — Sins of Commission and Omission
November 11, 2016
Ben and James discuss the Trump election, filter bubbles, and the responsibility of the tech industry. Presented by MailChimp Links Ben Thompson: Donald Trump is the President-Elect, Tech Under Trump, The Big Picture — Stratechery Daily Update Episode 085: Ballots and Guillotines — Exponent Ben Thompson: The Brexit Possibility — Stratechery James Allworth: Brexit, Trump, and the Ultimatum Game — Medium Ben Thompson: The Voters Decide — Stratechery “Day One in Trump’s America” — Twitter Moments Kim-Mai Cutler: “The best way to have the stickiest and most lucrative product? Be a systematic tool for confirmation bias.” — Twitter Ben Thompson: … Continue reading Episode 095 — The Backlash Has Arrived
November 4, 2016
Ben and James discuss when acquisitions make sense, why Apple shouldn’t buy Tesla, and debate whether they should or should not buy Netflix. Presented by MailChimp Links Ben Thompson: Apple Should Buy Netflix — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Why Apple Shouldn’t Buy Netflix — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: Best — Stratechery Ben Thompson: It’s a Tesla — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Netflix and Aggregation Theory — Stratechery Daily Update The Netflix Backlash: Why Hollywood Fears a Content Monopoly — Hollywood Reporters Ben Thompson: Netflix’s Earnings —Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: Everything as a Service — Stratechery Steve Blank: Why Tim Cook … Continue reading Episode 094 — Should Apple Buy Netflix?
October 21, 2016
Ben and James discuss the difference between the IT era and the Internet Revolution, first in the context of newspapers and then in the context of society broadly. Presented by MailChimp Links Jack Shafer: What If the Newspaper Industry Made a Colossal Mistake? — Politico Ben Thompson: The IT Era and the Internet Revolution — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Snapchat Changes Publisher Monetization — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Sports Linchpin — Stratechery Ben Thompson: TV Advertising’s Surprising Strength — and Inevitable Fall — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Friction — Stratechery Barack Obama, Neural Nets, Self-Driving Cars, and the Future of the World … Continue reading Episode 093 — The Disruption of Everything
October 14, 2016
Ben and James discuss what Consumerization of IT means in the context of Workplace by Facebook, Skype Teams, and Slack. Note: This podcast originally had a dead spot at the 8:13 mark. It has been fixed. To update please delete the podcast and re-download. Presented by MailChimp Links Ben Thompson: Chat and the Consumerization of IT — Stratechery David Moschella, Doug Neal, Piet Opperman, John Taylor: The ‘Consumerization’ of Information Technology — CSC Ben Thompson: What Clayton Christensen Got Wrong — Stratechery John Gruber: Blackberry vs iPhone — Daring Fireball Peter Bright: Going all-in: Ars interviews Microsoft’s Steve Ballmer — … Continue reading Episode 092 — Defining Consumerization of IT
October 7, 2016
Ben and James discuss the history of Android and why Google’s new phone signifies such a profound shift for the company. Presented by MailChimp Links Farhad Manjoo: MailChimp and the Un-Silicon Valley Way to Make It as a Start-Up — The New York Ttimes Ben Thompson: The Android Detour — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Truth About Windows Versus the Mac — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The State of Consumer Technology at the End of 2014 — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Google’s Go-to-Market Gap — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Why Google’s Pixel-Android Strategy is Smart, Samsung Buys Viv, Google Home — Stratechery Ben Thompson: … Continue reading Episode 091 — Google’s New Business Model
September 30, 2016
Ben and James follow-up on Facebook versus the media, and then dive into Spectacles and what makes for a compelling product. Presented by MailChimp Links Ben Thompson: Facebook Tweetstorm — Twitter Ben Thompson: How the Snap Spectacles Story Broke, Facebook Overestimated Video Metric — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: Economic Power in the Age of Abundance — Stratechery Warren Buffett: 1991 Letter to Shareholders — Berkshire Hathaway Ben Thompson: Snapchat Spectacles and the Future of Wearables — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Snapchat’s Ladder — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Facebook, Phones, and Phonebooks — Stratechery Seth Stevenson: Snapchat Releases First Hardware Product, Spectacles … Continue reading Episode 090 — Fashionable to Be Cynical
September 23, 2016
Ben and James discuss Oracle’s prospects in the crowd and how the Internet has changed the enterprise. Presented by MailChimp Links Ben Thompson: Oracle’s Cloudy Future — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Is AWS a Commodity? — Stratechery Daily Update Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter Feedback Presented by MailChimp
September 16, 2016
Ben and James discuss Facebook’s latest run-in with the media: both are wrong but for different reasons. Presented by MailChimp Links Ben Thompson: Facebook Versus the Media — Stratechery Espen Egil Hansen: Dear Mark. I am writing this to inform you that I shall not comply with your requirement to remove this picture. — Aftenposten Ben Thompson: What the Media Misses About Facebook, Facebook’s Missing Humans — Stratechery Daily Update Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter Feedback Presented by MailChimp
September 9, 2016
Ben and James discuss James’ adventurous summer and the recent Apple event and what it says about the future of Apple. Presented by MailChimp Links Wolverine Misses Exponent — Twitter James Allworth: So You’re Thinking About Doing a 10 Day Silent Vipassana Meditation Retreat? — Medium Naked People — Exponent Ben Thompson: Beyond the iPhone — Stratechery Farhad Manjoo: What’s Really Missing From the New iPhone: Cutting-Edge Design — New York Times Ben Thompson: Apple’s Organizational Crossroads — Stratechery Tim Cook, the interview: Running Apple ‘is sort of a lonely job’ — The Washington Post Ben Thompson: Apple’s PR Push, Maps and … Continue reading Episode 087 — Meditations on Courage
July 22, 2016
Ben and James discuss Facebook Live and Pokémon Go. Please note that this episode was podcast five days ago, on Saturday, July 16. Links Ben Thompson: A Technical Glitch — Stratechery The Laborers Who Keep Dick Pics and Beheadings Out of Your Facebook Feed — Wired Mat Honan: Why Facebook And Mark Zuckerberg Went All In On Live Video — BuzzFeed Ben Thompson: Facebook and the Feed — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Pokémon Go Phenomonan, Nintendo’s Pivot, Additional Notes on Pokémon Go — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: Activision Blizzard Buys King Digital — Stratechery Daily Update Aaron Levie: Nintendo’s … Continue reading Episode 086 — Following a Pokémon Off a Cliff
July 1, 2016
Ben and James discuss why the sociopolitical factors underlying the Brexit vote and their relationship to technology and a system of the future. Links Ben Thompson: The Brexit Possibility — Stratechery Ben Thompson: TV Advertising’s Surprising Strength — And Inevitable Fall — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Follow-up: The Big Picture — Stratechery James Allworth: Brexit, Trump, and the Ultimatum Game — Medium Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter Feedback Sponsorship Inquiry
June 24, 2016
Ben and James discuss how the TV industry and the companies that advertise on TV are interconnected, and how they will rise and fall together. Links Ben Thompson: TV Advertising’s Surprising Strength — and Inevitable Fall — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Cord Cutting Fantasy — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Why Disney and ESPN Will Be OK — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Old-Fashioned Snapchat — Stratechery Ben Thompson: How Technology is Changing the World (P&G Edition) — Stratechery Ken Doctor: The Macy’s Factor — Politico Ben Thompson: Cars and the Future — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Publishers and the Smiling Curve — Stratechery Ben … Continue reading Episode 084 — The Old World Order
June 17, 2016
Ben and James discuss Microsoft’s acquisition of LinkedIn and Apple’s WWDC announcements, and figure out why they feel so differently about the two of them. Links James Allworth: Who’s going to be having sleepless nights after Microsoft’s LinkedIn deal? — Medium Ben Thompson: Microsoft and Apple Double Down — Stratechery Ben Thompson: How Satya Nadella Killed Windows Phone — Stratechery Microsoft’s Nadella Manages Legacy of Ballmer-Board Split — Bloomberg Ben Thompson: The Deal That Makes No Sense — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Curse of Culture — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Apple’s Organizational Crossroads — Stratechery James Allworth: The Blessing of Failure … Continue reading Episode 083 — Microsoft & LinkedIn versus Apple & WWDC
June 10, 2016
Ben and James discuss the present and future of podcasts, and how media companies need to take a holistic approach to their businesses. Links Ben Thompson: The Future of Podcasts — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Why Web Pages Suck — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Publishers and the Smiling Curve — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Grantland and the (Surprising) Future of Publishing — Stratechery Ezra Klein Show: Ben Thompson on How to Make it in the Media in 2016 — Vox Marco Arment: Apple’s Actual Role in Podcasting: Be Careful What You Wish For — Marco.org Podcasts Surge, but Producers Fear Apple Isn’t Listening … Continue reading Episode 082 — A Podcast About Podcasts
June 3, 2016
Ben and James explain why Alexa is an even bigger deal than it seems, and why both Apple and Google should fear Amazon. Plus, why Microsoft’s challenges are only beginning. Links Ben Thompson: The Amazon Tax — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Jeff Bezos at the Code Conference — Stratechery Daily Update Jeff Bezos Intervew at the Code Conference: Video, Podcast, Live Blog Now We’re Talking: Amazon Alexa Comes to Pebble Core — Pebble Ben Thompson: Twilio Files for IPO — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Google’s Go-to-Market Gap — Stratechery James Allworth: The Blessing of Failure — Medium Ben Thompson: Mobile Makes Facebook … Continue reading Episode 081 — We Have Always Been at War with Amazon
May 27, 2016
Ben and James discuss briefly revisit last week’s discussion on Facebook, then discuss the Peter Thiel versus Gawker affair, and the implications for tech broadly. Then, how culture helps and hurts at Facebook, Apple, Google, and Microsoft. Links Ben Thompson: The Real Problem with Facebook and the News — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Peter Thiel, Comic Book Hero — Stratechery (note: this was written after the podcast) When the Most Personal Secrets Get Outed on Facebook — Wall Street Journal Ben Thompson: The Curse of Culture — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Google’s Go-to-Market Gap — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Everything as a Service — … Continue reading Episode 080 — Multiple Full Circles
May 20, 2016
Ben and James discuss the allegations that Facebook is censoring conservative news, and renew their ongoing debate about Facebook’s power. Then, why Google’s current situation is similar to Microsoft, even though the long-term looks good. Links Want to Know What Facebook Really Thinks of Journalists? Here’s What Happened When It Hired Some. — Gizmodo Former Facebook Workers: We Routinely Suppressed Conservative News — Gizmodo Nilay Patel: Let’s Say Obvious Things About Facebook and Conservative News — The Verge Ben Thompson: The Voters Decide — Stratechery Ben Thompson: The Real Problem with Facebook and the News — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Defending … Continue reading Episode 079 — Twerk the Algorithm
May 6, 2016
Ben and James discuss how the world will change, how change happens in companies and society, and debate whether or not we have crossed the rubicon to a new world. Links Ben Thompson: Everything as a Service —  Stratechery Ben Thompson: Friction — Stratechery Farhad Manjoo: The Uber Model, It Turns Out, Doesn’t Translate — The New York Times Ben Thompson: Intel Restructures — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: Microsoft’s Mobile Muddle — Stratechery Max Wessel: Path Dependency, Infrastructure, and Entrepreneurship — LongLogic Too Much of a Good Thing — Economist Ben Thompson: Facebook and New Market Disruption — Stratechery … Continue reading Episode 078 — Bending Trees
April 29, 2016
Ben and James follow-up on last week’s Apple services discussion and take a look at Apple’s earnings. Then a discussion of the European Commissions investigation of Google for antitrust, and a debate about how antitrust regulation needs to change, if at all. Links Episode 076: Apple’s Organization and Services — Exponent Apple Q2 2016 Earnings Call Transcript — Seeking Alpha Benjamin Mayo: Apple Earnings Press Release Titles — Twitter Ben Thompson: Apple’s Good Q1 Earnings, Apple is Not a Services Company — Stratechery Daily Update Ben Thompson: Apple’s Earnings and the iPhone Upgrade Cycle — Stratechery Daily Update Episode 005: The … Continue reading Episode 077 — Physical Goods
April 22, 2016
Ben and James discuss the different types of organizational structures, the benefits Apple gains from having a unitary form, and whether or not the company should make changes to more effectively compete in services. Links Ben Thompson: Apple’s Organizational Crossroads — Stratechery Ben Thompson: Services and Apple’s Strategy, The Power of a P&L — Stratechery Daily Update Episode 071: Pickaxe Retailers — Exponent Ben Thompson: Paypal’s Incentive Problem — Stratechery Hosts Ben Thompson, @benthompson, Stratechery James Allworth, @jamesallworth, Harvard Business Review Podcast Information Feed iTunes SoundCloud Twitter Feedback Sponsorship Inquiry
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