Squiz Today / 21 November 2022

Squiz Today – Monday, 21 November

%%=Format(@localdatetime, “dddd, d MMMM yyyy”)=%%

Squiz Today Podcast

News for on-the-go people. 

Today’s listen time: 9.30 minutes

16 / 25
9 / 14
19 / 35
10 / 17
13 / 29
8 / 13
26 / 34
7 / 13

Squiz Sayings

“Quite wintery”

Is how one weather forecaster described this week’s outlook, as 2 cold fronts hit southern and eastern Oz, bringing icy/windy temps from today. Umm it’s 10 sleeps until summer…

Trump tops off another chaotic week at Twitter

A lot is going on at Twitter HQ these days… Three weeks on from Tesla/Space X billionaire Elon Musk’s acquisition of the social media giant, he reinstated former US president Donald Trump’s account yesterday. It capped off another chaotic week that saw 1,200 workers quit – including many vital engineers – following an ultimatum that they commit to “hardcore” work. That’s raised concerns about the platform’s stability, with claims that Twitter has a 50% chance of crashing during the World Cup in Qatar, which kicks off today.

Just days after completing the $66 billion takeover, Musk fired half of the company’s 7,500 workforce early this month. With thousands more quitting or taking redundancies, it’s estimated that fewer than 1,000 staff remain. As a result, hashtags like #RIPTwitter are trending, and experts say it will be hard for so few workers to keep the site up and running. Since taking control of the platform, Musk has made sweeping decisions – like charging for Twitter’s blue tick – without consulting in-house experts. And while he’s known for practical jokes, some analysts believe his tough management style pose the most significant risk to the company, and have pointed to issues with Tesla’s workforce where there have been several lawsuits over demands that staff work up to 100 hours a week. Despite the problems, Musk says Twitter’s usage is at an “all-time high”.

On Saturday, Musk asked Twitter users to vote on whether Trump should have his account reinstated after he was kicked off the platform “due to the risk of further incitement of violence” following his supporters’ 6 January riots on the Capitol last year. The results were close – 51.8% of the 15 million respondents said Trump should be allowed back. There’s no guarantee that Trump will return – he says he’s sticking with his own social media platform Truth Social. It followed Friday’s reinstatement of several suspended accounts – including comedian Kathy Griffin and right-wing commentator Jordan Peterson. That’s prompted many to ask about Musk’s approach to ‘problematic’ users and content moving forward. Twitter’s former Trust and Safety boss Yoel Roth says if their company’s policies “are defined by edict” by the owner, get ready for a clash with advertisers and governments.

Business & Finance Technology

Squiz the Rest

A deadly club shooting in Colorado

Police have confirmed that 5 people have been killed and 18 injured in a mass shooting at LGBTQI+ venue Club Q in Colorado Springs late on Saturday night local time. The club was preparing for a drag brunch to celebrate Transgender Day of Remembrance on Sunday when the attacker opened fire – he was subdued by “heroic” patrons and arrested by police, who arrived within minutes. Authorities have 22yo Anderson Lee Aldrich in custody and are investigating his motive, but US President Joe Biden said “horrific hate violence” has plagued the country in recent years. Colorado Governor Jared Polis (who is the first openly gay state leader in the US) said in a statement that the shooting is “horrific, sickening, and devastating.”

World News

Notorious startup founder to be jailed

Ending a years-long saga that saw celebrated Silicon Valley startup founder Elizabeth Holmes sustain an almighty fall from grace, she was sentenced to 11 years and 3 months in prison for defrauding investors in her failed blood-testing company Theranos on Saturday. The 38yo raised almost US$1 billion from investors – including Rupert Murdoch and former military general/Secretary of Defence James Mattis – for the invention she said would revolutionise health diagnostics. She claimed hundreds of tests could be run from a few drops of blood – but the technology never worked. Calling the case “troubling on so many levels,” US ​​Judge Edward Davila said it may have been hubris or “intoxication with fame” that led to Holmes’ conduct. Holmes, who is pregnant with her second child, must report to prison in April next year after she’s given birth. Her former business partner/boyfriend Sunny Balwani was found guilty of fraud in a separate trial – he’s expected to be sentenced on 7 December.

Crime World News

Wrapping it up on the world stage

COP27, the United Nations’ big climate summit for 2022, finished up yesterday in Egypt in extra time after reaching an agreement on paying for climate change damages. But… there is no guidance on how much money the compensation fund needs, who contributes, and who benefits. As for the final world leaders’ summit, there was yet another discussion of Russia’s war on Ukraine and China’s strategic ambitions at Thailand’s Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) meeting. PM Anthony Albanese said solving those big problems will “require international cooperation, they require goodwill, and they require countries to work together for our common interest.” This is where we’d point to a gallery of pics of leaders wearing their silly APEC shirts, but Russia’s attendance saw another canning of the family photo. Boo… Expect an excursion report from PM Albanese today as federal parliament resumes in Canberra for a frantic final 2 weeks of sittings this year.

World News

Here you come again…

Almost a week of silence from the Medibank hacker/s doesn’t mean they’ve gone away… Almost 1,500 records in 4 files were released on the Dark Web on Saturday – one commentator said they relate to customers whose dealings with the private health insurer “fall into some of the most deeply personal areas of healthcare.” It takes the number of records released to more than 2,700, with more than 2,500 Australians affected by the leaks of the stolen data. Analysts say it’s an escalation in the cybercriminals’ attempts to force Medibank into paying a circa US$10 million ransom. Medibank boss David Koczkar says that customers whose details were exposed are being offered support. Last week, shareholders were told that the cyberattack – the biggest in Australia’s corporate history – will cost the company at least $35 million.

Australian News Business & Finance

We are the champions

C’mon Aussie… Our men’s and women’s national teams aced yesterday’s Rugby League World Cup finals in Manchester, England. For the blokes, a 30-10 victory over Samoa secured the title of world champions for the 12th time. It was a massive achievement for the Pacific Islanders to make it into the final after a 7-week campaign, but an upset was never on the cards against the Kangaroos, who were dominant all game long. Captain James Tedesco was named player-of-the-match for his 2-try performance. And the Jillaroos were superdominant over the Kiwi Ferns, winning 54-4. It’s the Aussie women’s 3rd consecutive Rugby League World Cup victory – and commentators say the gulf between our team and the rest is widening thanks to the world-leading NRLW competition. “I love this jersey, and we never rested in defence – we let them cross once and we’re still kicking ourselves about that,” said Aussie star Ali Brigginshaw. Perfectionists, eh…


Apropos of Nothing

North Korean girl Kim Chu-ae made her first public appearance on Saturday – she’s Kim Jong Un’s 12-13yo daughter, and until the weekend, her existence was a rumour. The pair’s inspection of an intercontinental ballistic missile launch site on Friday was the backdrop for the happy snap. So, just a regular outing for the Kims…

Reluctant Nobel Prize-winning music man Bob Dylan was a young softie… His personal letters written to his high school girlfriend have sold at auction for $1 million to a renowned Portuguese bookshop. The quality of writing in the letters we received from boys from our high school days would see them fetch about 20c…

Ever felt like unleashing your anger without inhibition with others who are similarly frustrated? Behold the rise of women-only ‘scream groups’… Started in Sydney, it’s Australia’s latest global export.

Quirky News

Squiz the Day

10.00am (AEDT) – Federal Parliament resumes – Canberra

6.00pm (AEDT) – Former PM Kevin Rudd to deliver the 2022 JG Crawford Oration examining “how [Chinese] President Xi Jinping’s ideology is shaping China’s worldview and actions on the global stage” – Canberra

7.30pm (AEDT) – Kath & Kim: 20 Preposterous Years premieres on ABC TV

10.00pm (AEDT) – Announcement of the Prime Minister’s Prizes for Science – Canberra

Start of National Skin Cancer Awareness Week (on until 27 Nov)

World Television Day

Happy birthday to Tweety Bird (1942), Goldie Hawn (1945), Björk (1965) and Carly Rae Jepsen (1985)

Anniversary of:
• the premiere of Rocky (1976)
• the release of Pharrell Williams’ Happy single (2013)

Squiz the Day

The Squiz Archive

Want to check out Squiz Today from the archive?

Get the Squiz Today newsletter

It's a quick read and doesn't take itself too seriously. Get on it.