The Snatch: Technology Brings Us Together, or Else

App Me, Bro
Not much has gone according to plan for the 49ers this year at their plush new $1.3 billion home in the 'burbs. Workers died building the place. A fan died attending the place. The team coughed up leads. The stadium is so far from San Francisco the B-roll shots of city scenery played during games are practically satirical. But there is this: The team has enhanced the in-game experience for the fans with a smartphone app that allows you to have a beer delivered to your seat — and find the least crowded restroom in which to recycle it. Having beer and food delivered to you on-demand (and finding the best pissoire) is just the start of it. The stadium app stores mobile tickets and parking passes and features “wayfinding” elements for those lost within the cavernous new stadium. There's a fan engagement network and, wouldn't you know it, a troubleshooting team for those unable to get the damn thing to work.

The Plight of Local Business
The social news site Reddit came under attack last week after word got out that it had implemented a new tough-love employment policy, right after closing a $50 million investment deal. Reddit is now obliging its remote workforce to relocate to San Francisco, a decision that CEO Yishan Wong says will promote “optimal teamwork.” “Our goal is to retain 100 percent of the team,” Wong tweeted, defending his company against charges of capricious rule-making. Wong says his company is offering a generous relocation package and three month's severance for anyone who can't make the move by the end of the year. Even that hasn't placated critics who believe that an internet company should understand — and embrace — the concept of working remotely. That said, the policy is completely legal, according to Golden Gate University associate law professor Hina Shah. Because California is an at-will employment state, companies can subject their employees to unilateral decisions based on their business needs, Shah says. In fact, Shah adds, the company didn't even have to provide relocation packages.

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