// HAPPENING TODAY
- The Samsung Developers Conference kicks off at Moscone West in San Francisco.
Unilever to Hampton Creek: From Hellmann’s Heart, I Stab at Thee
Thought Big Oil was a bastard? Check out Big Mayo. International food conglomerate and mayonnaise leviathan Unilever this week filed suit against Hampton Creek, accusing it of false advertising and unfair competition in the apparently cutthroat mayo market. Unilever argues that Hampton Creek’s “Just Mayo” is a false mayonnaise, which fails to meet the Food and Drug Administration’s definition of the beloved emulsified semisolid food. “Despite its name, Just Mayo does not contain just mayonnaise. In fact, it is not mayonnaise at all,” Unilever claims in its suit. “Under federal regulations, common dictionary definitions and as consumers understand it, ‘mayonnaise’ or ‘mayo’ is a product that contains eggs. That ingredient does not exist in Just Mayo.” Worse, surging popularity of the plant-based mayo is stealing market share from Hellmann’s — the one true mayonnaise. Leaving aside for a moment the head-cleaving irony of the maker of a concoction like I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter! calling for the sanctity of ingredients in anything, this is a ferociously idiotic response to innovation in a vast market that desperately needs it. By bringing Silicon Valley solutions to bear on things like mayonnaise, Hampton Creek is working to change the future of food production, and to rid it of some of its notoriously inhumane and wasteful practices. Suing it — and demanding triple damages — over the “standard of identity” of mayonnaise is just silly.
Heh: “Continuing Nokia Story”
Nokia on the launch of Microsoft’s Lumia 535 — the first Lumia that won’t bear the Nokia name: “We’re saying goodbye soon to Microsoft Lumia. The #Nokia team will share the continuing Nokia story with you soon!”
Looking Forward to Hearing More About This HoMo Idea on the Next AOL Earnings Call
The New Yorker’s Andrew Marantz on AOL’s “Digital Prophet,” David Shing: “[Shingy] told the Applebee’s people that to make their brand ‘remarkable, reactive, and relevant’ they have to tell stories in real time. Everyone is talking about SoLoMo — social, local, mobile — but they should be talking about HoMo: home/mobile, cell phones used on the couch.”
Obscenely Wealthy Entrepreneur Unsurprisingly Happy With Obscene Wealth
Mark Cuban on what normals might find surprising about being a billionaire: “Nothing. It’s fucking amazing and off the charts.”
Apple’s Enterprise Assault
Steve Jobs once said that though Apple chose not to push the iPad hard into enterprise at launch, “it’s being grabbed out of our hands, anyways.” Now, under CEO Tim Cook, Apple has become more proactive about peddling the tablet and other devices into the fast-growing mobile market for business professionals. Reuters reports that the company has created a dedicated sales team charged with courting big corporate clients. News of the initiative follows Apple’s summer announcement of a broad partnership with IBM to develop more than 100 industry-specific applications that will run on the iPhone and iPad.
Obama’s Net Neutrality Call Apparently Inconsistent With AT&T Lobbying Spend
No surprises here. President Barack Obama’s call for the FCC to reclassify consumer broadband service under Title II of the Telecommunications Act isn’t going over well with the big players in the telecom industry, who would like everyone to know that it’s possible to be committed to an open Internet, even while opposing it. To wit, this statement from AT&T, which warns that regulating broadband service under Title II would set the industry back decades — in inside-the-Beltway maneuvering. “We feel the actions called for by the White House are inconsistent with decades of legal precedent as well as Congressional intent. Moreover, if the government were going to make such a momentous decision as regulating the entire Internet like a public utility, that decision is more properly made by the Congress and not by unelected regulators without any public record to support the change in regulation.”
Caveat: Unethical and Unsavory Can Be Pretty Effective in Getting Your Company to a $17 Billion Valuation
Fred Wilson on Uber’s efforts to kneecap Lyft’s fundraising: “This is not a new tactic. I have seen it used for as long as I have been in the VC business. It is, however, unethical and unsavory, just like the companies that use it. And it is one other thing, ineffective.”
Jennifer Lawrence in 164 Characters
Actress Jennifer Lawrence: “I will never get Twitter. I’m not very good on phone or technology. I cannot really keep up with emails, so the idea of Twitter is so unthinkable to me.”
Spotify CEO to Taylor Swift: It’s Not Me, It’s You
Spotify’s reaction to Taylor Swift’s rejection of its service has moved from please-don’t-leave-me-we-can-make-this-work pleading to indignation today, with a new blog post from CEO Daniel Ek, who has had it with musicians like Swift complaining that his company doesn’t pay them enough for their work. According to Ek, Spotify, which has amassed some 12.5 million paying subscribers, has paid more than $2 billion in royalties to the music industry since it was founded in 2008. “When I hear stories about artists and songwriters who say they’ve seen little or no money from streaming and are naturally angry and frustrated, I’m really frustrated too,” Ek wrote. “At our current size, payouts for a top artist like Taylor Swift (before she pulled her catalog) are on track to exceed $6 million a year, and that’s only growing — we expect that number to double again in a year. Any way you cut it, one thing is clear — we’re paying an enormous amount of money to labels and publishers for distribution to artists and songwriters, and significantly more than any other streaming service.”
How Reassuring …
Aaron, a former captain in the Air Force’s 341st Missile Wing, on his stint babysitting ICBMs: “I would sit on alert with CNN up and just hit refresh, hoping to God something would happen in the world. I’m just like, ‘Please, something change. … You just sit there and hope to God that this next 10 hours disappears. Because your partner goes to bed and you, the console, and the missiles are by yourself for 10 hours.”
This article originally appeared on Recode.net.