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House Speaker Paul Ryan tells confidants he won’t run for re-election: Report

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House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI), speaks to the media after attending a meeting with House GOP members, on Capitol Hill January 30, 2018 in Washington, DC.

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House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI), speaks to the media after attending a meeting with House GOP members, on Capitol Hill January 30, 2018 in Washington, DC.

Ryan achieved his long-held goal of overhauling the U.S. tax code in December. Once he did so, he felt comfortable leaving a job that had become taxing due to Trump’s behavior, according to the Axios report.

House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., and House Majority Whip Steve Scalise, R-La., are among the leaders who could try to replace Ryan. Both have quietly started to make moves for the job, according to Politico.

Scalise will not run for the post if McCarthy does, according to Axios.

It is unclear who the GOP will want to run for the Wisconsin’s 1st District seat. One candidate, Paul Nehlen, has previously challenged Ryan but is unlikely to gain traction with the party because he has espoused white supremacist views.

A spokeswoman for Ryan did not immediately respond to a request to comment on Ryan’s plans.

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Unity stock pops after IPO on NYSE

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The New York Stock Exchange welcomes Unity Software Inc. (NYSE: U) Friday, September 18, 2020, as they officially begin trading today.

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Shares of Unity, a video game software developer, jumped more than 30% in its market debut Friday on the New York Stock Exchange. 

The company priced its shares at $52 apiece, after lifting the range on Wednesday to between $44 and $48. The stock began trading at $75 per share. The surge after the open boosted the company’s market cap to nearly $20 billion, making it more than half of game-maker EA‘s market cap. 

The stock trades under the symbol “U.” 

Founded in 2004, Unity has become a major player in game creation over the past decade by giving developers the tools to create 3D titles for phones, consoles and the web without having to code for each platform. The company said in its prospectus that it has 1.5 million monthly active creators and that developers using its software are seeing over 3 billion downloads a month. 

“Pokemon Go” and “Iron Man VR” are among the games developed using Unity’s software. It’s also used for games published by Electronic ArtsTake-Two InteractiveTencent and Ubisoft.

Revenue in the first half of 2020 rose 39% from a year earlier to $351.3 million and the number of customers spending $100,000 or more increased to 716 from 515. Unity’s net loss in the first six months of the year narrowed to $54.1 million from $67.1 million a year ago.

The company announced earlier that employees and former employees, excluding executive officers and directors, can sell up to 15% of their vested holdings from the time the stock opens through Sept. 30. Typically, employees and insiders have to hold on to their shares for a lock-up period, which usually is six months.

Unity’s market debut closes one of the busiest weeks for IPOs. It follow’s cloud company Snowflake‘s debut, which more than doubled in value on Wednesday. 

— CNBC’s Ari Levy contributed to this report. 

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Nico Rosberg asks governments to ‘up their game’ on climate change

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Netflix’s The Social Dilemma sees people to delete Facebook, Instagram

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LONDON — Social media users are re-evaluating whether they should have accounts on platforms like Facebook and Instagram after a new documentary-drama called “The Social Dilemma” dropped on Netflix.

The 90-minute show, which focuses on the downsides of the major tech platforms, features interviews with Silicon Valley whistleblowers who used to work at the likes of Google and Facebook. In many ways, they’re sounding the alarm on their own creations. One former Facebook executive, Tim Kendall, who was asked what worried him most, said: “In the shortest time horizon, I’m most worried about civil war.”

Somewhat ironically, social media is awash with people saying they plan to delete their social media accounts after watching the show, with Facebook and Instagram appearing to be called out most frequently.

“Everyone should watch The Social Dilemma documentary on Netflix and then make the necessary changes,” one Twitter user wrote. “Tonight I deleted Facebook and turned off notifications from Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn. It’s time to take back control of our minds.”

Another Twitter user said: “Just watched this and immediately deleted #Facebook and #Instagram. A must watch to understand the manipulation.”

Ranked as the 5th most watched show on Netflix in the U.K. on Friday and hailed as “the most important documentary of our times” by The Independent newspaper, “The Social Dilemma” shines a light on how tech companies influence national elections, “follow” billions of people around the internet in order to deliver targeted ads to them and come up with features that drive addiction.

Facebook, which also owns Instagram, declined to comment when asked whether it was concerned about a potential user backlash.

Instead the California-headquartered firm pointed to several announcements and resources on safety and mental health. For example, earlier this month, on World Suicide Prevention Day, it announced that it was creating new “Instagram Wellness Guides” and launching “crisis support” over chat. Last year,  Facebook released a “Let’s Talk” Stories filter on Facebook and Messenger, which was designed to act as an invitation for friends who might be struggling to reach out for support through Messenger.

Google did not immediately respond to CNBC’s request for comment. 

While many people are urging their friends and family to watch the “The Social Dilemma,” it’s not without its critics. 

Tech analyst Benedict Evans, a former partner at venture firm Andreessen Horrowitz, told CNBC: “I thought it hilarious how manipulative and misleading it was.”

He added that he thinks it will have “zero effect” on the likes of Facebook and Instagram.

Timothy Armoo, chief executive of Fanbytes, a company that helps brands advertise through social video, told CNBC that most people already know many of the things that the show discusses. “Maybe older people might see it and think twice,” he said. “Especially parents. But Gen Z and millennials I don’t think are going to care as much.”

The tech giants, who have weathered big storms in the past, are facing increasing amounts of scrutiny from regulators and their users. The “Delete Facebook” movement, for example, has been around for years now and several media outlets have written instruction guides to help people to do it. But Facebook’s profits continue to grow quarter after quarter, year after year.

In 2019, Netflix launched another attack on Silicon Valley with a documentary called “The Great Hack,” which focuses on Facebook’s Cambridge-Analytica data scandal.

 

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