Algorithmically innovative? An important tool for connection? A grave national security threat? Paul and Rich discuss the recent bipartisan vote in the U.S. House of Representatives to ban TikTok—and whatever you think of the platform itself, they argue that the move says something significant about the American government’s relationship with big tech.

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E20

What the TikTok Ban Means to Tech at Large

Paul Ford: Hi, I’m Paul Ford, the co-founder of Aboard.

Rich Ziade: And I am Rich Ziade, the other co-founder of Aboard. Aboard is an American company.

Paul: Oh, it sure is.

Rich: 100% made in the USA.

Paul: No, that’s not true. [laughing]

Rich: Except for our remote team, that’s not in the USA.

Paul: Yeah, I mean, what are you, what are you doing here, man? What are you—are you trying to make some point about things being made in the USA?

Rich: [singing to the tune of “America, Fuck Yeah”] America…

[intro music]

Rich: Uh…you ever bought anything from Weathertech?

Paul: I can’t say that I have, but I recognize the brand name. What do they do?

Rich: They, I think, made their money making, like, molded plastic or composite sort of floor mats for cars.

Paul: Oh, that’s why people listen to this podcast, to learn about Weathertech. Is this our sponsor? Are we going to sell mattresses?

Rich: It’s not our sponsor. They also make phone holders that fit in the cup, and I think they sold like a billion of those.

Paul: Oh, okay.

Rich: So the cup holder, it fits into the cup holder, and then what sticks out of it is a phone gripper. And so they’ve sold about 600 million of those.

Paul: As you’re telling me this, I’m transported to the bleakest minivan of my life, right? What are you trying to say, Richard?

Rich: In their ad, they love telling you that they are made in the USA.

Paul: Oh, there we go.

Rich: Manufacturing, made in the USA. Look, the world is extremely global. This happened 40 years ago, 30 years ago, at this point. I like to buy USB cables for a dollar. Not going to lie.

Paul: No, it’s too bad they electrocute you and short your stuff.

Rich: They could burn my house down.

Paul: Yeah.

Rich: But they’re a dollar, Paul.

Paul: I do like when things get shoved into the mailbox in that little wrapper and you see that they’ve come from some heavy-industries park deep inside of China.

Rich: China, Mexico. Look, it’s a global, the world… And why did this happen? It happened because labor costs were just incredibly low in these other places, and…

Paul: This was always a deal, right? There was made in Japan, and then there was made in the—there’s always been, there was Taiwan and so on. But in the last 30, 40 years, under sort of the banner of globalization, it became sort of global policy. We’re going to get everyone into the same marketplace. And then the Euro happens, the Eurozone happens. Suddenly in our lifetime, it used to be that you would go to the store and there were like five or six places things were made.

Rich: Yes.

Paul: They were kind of these breadbaskets of transistor radios, like Taiwan or something.

Rich: Yes.

Paul: And now things come from everywhere, and China makes everything.

Rich: China makes everything.

Paul: Yeah.

Rich: China is a massive production line of everything.

Paul: We should recommend a film to people who haven’t seen it. It’s called Ascension. You turned me onto it.

Rich: It’s a beautiful film. Very meditative. I don’t think there’s any narration. I think you’re just observing different factories in China.

Paul: No, it’s that classic kind of documentary where there’s like a real slow soundtrack and then they pan.

Rich: Sometimes they do, like, time lapse to just sort of emphasize just how animated a factory is or whatever.

Paul: But no voiceover—

Rich: It’s a beautiful film.

Paul: What it does is it takes people from…going, it starts with people leaving rural areas on buses to go get factory jobs in China, all the way through the manufacturing process.

Rich: Yes.

Paul: And all the way—it kind of shows you where they live in global trade.

Rich: It’s hilarious, too. There’s a scene where there’s just old Asian women, just QA-ing sex dolls.

Paul: Yeah, it’s a lot.

Rich: It’s a lot.

Paul: It’s a little bit of a—yeah, just be ready for that scene. But it’s also, like, one of the most amazing things you’ll ever see.

Rich: It’s a beautiful film. Why am I bringing this up? I’m bringing this up because I think America…I was watching a documentary recently called The Gilded Age. Not the show, there’s a show called Gilded Age, where it’s just wealthy people.

Paul: This is about the actual Gilded Age in America.

Rich: It’s about the actual Gilded Age.

Paul: When was that?

Rich: We’re talking about late 1800s into the 1900s, which, by the way, in the documentary, Paul, everyone just went buck wild. You’ve got the Vanderbilts and Carnegie and all these people—

Paul: Well, you had the old money, like the Vanderbilts, who were like, made their money from furs. And now you have railways. You have—

Rich: Railways, and then Carnegie is like, you know what? He came, he was poor, came from Scotland. He came to the U.S. He’s like, “Steel.”

Paul: Yeah, everybody needs it.

Rich: He doubles down, everybody needs it. First it was railroads. He’s like, you know what? It’s not about railroads, it’s about America. And this guy went for it, right? And here’s the thing I didn’t realize. I didn’t realize there was no taxes. They hadn’t figured out taxes yet.

Paul: No, there were no real income taxes.

Rich: Corporate tax wasn’t in place.

Paul: This was the whole point about someone like Rockefeller. Sort of the first true, one of the true mega, mega oil zillionaires. People have said his net worth was close to a trillion because there were no taxes. It was just money adjusted for inflation.

Rich: Yes.

Paul: When you hear about all the money he had, which was in the billions, it sounds like a high number, but it actually was higher than even that. It was absolute—

Rich: It was out of bounds. I’m going to say something decisive. I am not a historian or an economist by any means. We have shifted—we amassed so much wealth through this era of wicked production. Just the production of everything in America was so strong that we absorbed anybody who was willing to come over and work for us.

Paul: You got off the boat, there wasn’t a lot of paperwork. They made sure you weren’t sick, and—

Rich: You just go to work.

Paul: And then you went and you found your cousin, and then hopefully you’d get a job.

Rich: Carnegie was a Scottish—he was from Scotland,

Paul: Some kid.

Rich: His father was, he was a weaver. He was like, he would make bedsheets and curtains, and then it got automated away and they couldn’t eat. They were like, we have to leave. They left their home of generations and came to America.

Paul: Literally, the factory. Like, they’re like, we can’t live if the factory does our job.

Rich: He lost his job.

Paul: Yeah.

Rich: He’s like, I got nothing. They’re letting anybody into America. Let’s go.

Paul: Sure.

Rich: That’s how they came. But now I think we hoarded everything.

Paul: America did.

Rich: We literally hoarded America. We took the land, we took it all. America—

Paul: This is why people like to hold their—like, other governments hold their wealth in dollars.

Rich: Yes.

Paul: We are the bank of the world.

Rich: We shifted at some point, and I’m not going to sit here and tell you about the history of 1900 to the year 2000. We shifted from a powerhouse producer to a powerhouse consumer. Now we consume everything. China makes stuff. You want to know our leverage of China? This is my theory. There’s always tension between us and China. And everybody wants Taiwan because it’s just kind of sitting there like a little morsel that fell off.

Paul: We don’t want it. We just don’t want China to have it.

Rich: We don’t want China to have it.

Paul: Yeah.

Rich: Which means we want it.

Paul: Yeah.

Rich: Let’s be honest.

Paul: That’s how we do our imperialism, yeah.

Rich: That’s how we do our thing. Now, what is our leverage? How do you get China to stand down? We consume what they produce. Everything.

Paul: We’re their economy.

Rich: We are their economy.

Paul: Yeah.

Rich: We consume it all. Now, it turns out we don’t just consume goods, Paul. You know what else we consume? Shitty ten-second videos.

Paul: Oh, there is that. That is where we do like content. Well, and this goes to another point, which is America truly is the world’s, I like to say, breadbasket. I always just love to drop that in. But we make the content and the intellectual property. We have an amazing infrastructure. For generating designs for things that need to be manufactured.

Rich: [laughing] We do. We like to place the order.

Paul: Yeah. But we love it. And we love it when it comes back, and then we’re like, ooh, fix it a little bit.

Rich: So, I don’t know. The origin story of ByteDance, the parent company of TikTok.

Paul: Oh. It’s one of those giant Chinese, almost undifferentiated, mega, everything corps.

Rich: Let me pitch TikTok to you. You are the ByteDance board. Listen to me.

Paul: Yeah?

Rich: They’re willing to consume candy shaped like fighter planes, and they’re willing to consume slippers that smell like bananas. Americans will consume anything.

Paul: We’ve seen that because we’re also on the board—we’re part of the board of Temu and we’re part of, yeah, okay.

Rich: Exactly. They’ll consume anything.

Paul: Okay.

Rich: Let’s create just the most virally addictive consumption machine for them to consume videos.

Paul: Oh, interesting. So you’re saying that TikTok was the Alibaba of content. Like, it was just sort of like, here it is—

Rich: America is one big couch.

Paul: I mean, people do see us that way, and it’s not wrong. A grumpy couch, a confused couch, yeah.

Rich: A couch that doesn’t want to get up to answer the door for the Amazon guy who brought the thing from China. We just want to stay on the couch.

Paul: We’re kind of the angry, it’s angry couch. Like, we sit there grumpy, and we don’t get off the couch.

Rich: And look, let’s call it for what it is. We appreciate it when we see technology just win. TikTok won.

Paul: Well, that was wild. It was wild. Because you had all the other social media kind of trundling along. Here’s the other thing, too, is no one could eat it. Like, Facebook was like, we’ll do our own short videos and Instagram…

Rich: Twitter bought Vine.

Paul: Twitter had vine—well no, that was before. That was the beginning of all of this.

Rich: No, but there’s shades of it there.

Paul: Everybody saw this pattern coming, and then I think they assumed, hey, we can catch up with our own platform. But a set of product decisions that TikTok made, some of which are open to extreme criticism around how its algorithm, essentially, pâté-duck force feeds you content.

Rich: I mean, it’s highly, highly optimized to our sort of most basic urges. You know how I knew it was a big deal?

Paul: Yeah?

Rich: I had a friend, he’s a partner at Ernst & Young. He does compliance for Ernst & Young, as a partner. Travels around the world.

Paul: Can you tell people what that—most people don’t know what that job is.

Rich: He does auditing—

Paul: That’s right.

Rich: Like, they’re going to buy a company and it’s like, go make sure that everything’s on the up.

Paul: Well, literally, if you’re a large enough company, you have to comply with the laws.

Rich: Also if somebody wants to buy you, they want to make sure that what you’re saying about yourself is true.

Paul: That’s right.

Rich: So they send Ernst & Young in. So he does just big business stuff. This is a legit dude. Dresses very well…

Paul: But his job is to go in a room where someone says, “75!” And he goes, “Looks more like 74.99 to me.”

Rich: Yeah.

Paul: And that’s a big deal.

Rich: And they can create doubt. Like, it’s power.

Paul: Yeah.

Rich: It’s money and power.

Paul: So here’s this guy, the most corporate of corporate jobs.

Rich: Having lunch, knows wine very well—always let him order wine. He subscribes to some service and sends him wine.

Paul: I mean, we know this guy. Everybody knows this guy.

Rich: Everybody knows this guy. He looked at me, utterly sincere, and he said, “I love TikTok so much.”

Paul: Wow. That’s not the core demographic we were expecting.

Rich: I was like, “Really? Are you 14?”

Paul: Yeah.

Rich: He said, “No, I love to golf. And it’s gotten to know me, and it gives me the best golf content.” [laughing]

Paul: You know what’s wild about it? No. This is real. It has fantastic content. If you are like, if you’re neuro—

Rich: Trying to learn something.

Paul: Or there’s a medical condition in your family, neurodivergence, ADHD, autism, any of that. The TikTok content is often guided by medical professionals. People share their own stories, they show coping strategies.

Rich: It’s like YouTube that way. There is the viral stuff, but if you dig in deeper, there’s actual information in there.

Paul: You wanna know what’s magical about it in that regard? Let’s talk about, for one second, you ever been on an online forum? I know you have.

Rich: Have I.

Paul: And let’s say you have a hobby or an interest, and you hit the grey text of phpBB online forum.

Rich: Okay.

Paul: Okay? Do you feel that you can participate and are part of the community at that point, when you set up your account?

Rich: Not initially.

Paul: No, and in fact, there’s often like, you get those little “super poster,” everybody gets their little hierarchies.

Rich: They want to learn to trust each other.

Paul: Yeah. If you’re… Let’s say it’s a sneaker forum.

Rich: New user.

Paul: Yeah.

Rich: And then there’s pro.

Paul: Here’s Jim, and he’s like a sneaker something, and he’s been in it for ten years.

Rich: Badges and ratings. Yes yes yes.

Paul: What I think TikTok nailed in two regards—there’s three things it nailed. One is unbelievable velocity of content experience. Just a good app in terms of consumption.

Rich: Oh my God.

Paul: Keep going, keep going. They nailed that, for better or for worse. Some of it’s a little dark and not great, but, like, okay.

Rich: Yes.

Paul: That’s A. So, okay. Good platform, good product, or effective. Two, viral content, and enough input into the creator ecosystem that people didn’t feel ripped off. They wanted to do stuff with TikTok. TikTok was giving them some money, and they were more engaged with their users than…the other ones always want to keep them a little further away.

Rich: They incented content that made you want to show it to your friend.

Paul: That’s right. But I think three is that if you lean in on that thing and you look at it and you connect to a community there, you’re really welcome. It is people—

Rich: That’s true. I didn’t know that.

Paul: I mean, people are saying, come on in, because it’s a combo of the influencer dynamic and the internet community dynamic.

Rich: Right. Interesting.

Paul: And so people are like, I’m going back to your friend. Your friend loves golf. He’s serious about golf. It’s incredibly inviting because the influencers are saying, like, kind of the like and subscribe model. Come on in, come on in, come on in. Right?

Rich: And they’re also being generous with information.

Paul: The traditional internet community is like, have you passed the 50 thresholds before you can really be considered Mr. Golf?

Rich: Mmm hmm.

Paul: Right? But TikTok is like, you’re interested? God, man, we love to bring people in. I love you. You’re great. And here’s some great viral content—

Rich: Which forums don’t have that much.

Paul: No.

Rich: You have to have that expertise. You have to have that trust.

Paul: Instagram is snooty, right? Instagram is like, watch this. This is fancy. You can’t have it. Twitter is, I don’t want to say what X is. It’s just, like, everybody knows, but it’s brutal.

Rich: It’s dark.

Paul: It stabs you in the neck when you’re not looking.

Rich: Today.

Paul: Facebook—

Rich: It wasn’t always that way.

Paul: Facebook is your racist grandfather who’s screaming uncontrollably. [laughter] And then now you got TikTok, which is like, oh my God. Yeah. Do you feel that way, too? Now? What ends up happening with TikTok is people go, “My itchy ear is probably a sign that space aliens want me to kill.” And 500 other people are like, “Absolutely. I have that, too.”

Rich: I mean, that’s just human nature, right?

Paul: It is. But that same dynamic that makes it really positive for your golf buddy.

Rich: Mmm hmm.

Paul: I know, you don’t play golf, but he’s your buddy who likes golf.

Rich: Yeah.

Paul: Is the same dynamic that I think leads to it being a really potent viral aggregation platform for ideas that might be incredibly bad or dangerous.

Rich: Which leads me to a pretty profound outcome for TikTok and ByteDance this week. We’re recording this March 15th.

Paul: Yeah, it’s much in the news. Ides of March.

Rich: Overwhelmingly, the U.S. Congress [House of Representatives] passed a bill that is requiring TikTok to either be wholly American owned or banned.

Paul: I don’t think we’ve ever been here with a large platform before.

Rich: It’s wild.

Paul: Well, this has been simmering for a while. We are paranoid about China in America, and we feel that ByteDance could use, perhaps has used, but could use TikTok as a propaganda engine to change the outcome of American society and elections.

Rich: Fundamentally, you have a recipe for a lot of suspicion and paranoia. First off, we talked about this as a consumption platform, but the behavioral patterns that come out of it are gold, right? You can make money on those patterns, but you could also manipulate people on those patterns.

Paul: Sure.

Rich: So if I’m someone that cares deeply about a particular cause, I can weaponize your feelings about that cause to take you anywhere I want.

Paul: I mean, we saw this with how Facebook, people were manipulated in 2016 on Facebook, and to the point that there’s legislation and guidance.

Rich: That’s right. And so they were triangulating on, and I’ll give you an example. I’m posting a lot of religious quotes, and I’m talking about how much I love my televangelist. And then Facebook is saying, “If you love Jesus, you have to vote for Trump.”

Paul: Yes, that’s right.

Rich: As an ad. Not Facebook, the company. An ad is being pushed back. Why? Because they triangulated on my interests, my intense feelings about something.

Paul: Well, even more specific than that, I was able to feed those people—literally, like, Macedonian hackers are feeding people viral content that validates their anger regardless of whether it’s true or not. Right?

Rich: Yes.

Paul: So it just created this misinformation firehose where nothing could get in except for that.

Rich: I don’t like the term “firehose.”

Paul: Okay.

Rich: I’ll tell you why. The reason is those Macedonian hackers were given clear profiles of carved out demographics of tens of people, hundreds of people that had particular interests. And they would target them individually.

Paul: Right, right. Because they knew they’d click.

Rich: Not only did they know they’d click, but they knew where the buttons were, the hot-emotion buttons that those people cared about. It could be something as innocuous as, like, “I can’t believe they’re banning plastics.”

Paul: Right.

Rich: And they’ll say, like, “If you care about plastics, vote for X.”

Paul: Yeah, no, no, no, I get it.

Rich: It was that.

Paul: So back to TikTok.

Rich: Back to TikTok. So now you have that blueprint, and I don’t know the details of where the data is. I don’t know the details of who holds the behavioral data. I don’t know if it’s in China. I have no idea. I don’t know the makeup of this. Clearly, there’s been some pretty intense committee meetings. There’s been reports that have come out that I think for a law like this to get passed—I’m speculating here, but I think the only way a law like this gets passed is if behind closed doors, they’re showing some pretty scary insights into how this is all laid out.

Paul: It’s extremely unusual for the members of our government to collaborate across party lines.

Rich: There is a deck that is just a rough picture here that is just, like, okay, we can’t let this happen. I think that’s what is in place.

Paul: That’s—

Rich: I don’t know that for a fact. I am not a journalist. I have not investigated it, et cetera, et cetera. But Congress is privy to information that they don’t always have to share with everyone. That’s why committees exist. And I don’t know what that is.

Paul: Something is going on.

Rich: [laughing] Something is going on…

Paul: No, because we’re not worried about Chinese DVD players. We’re worried about TikTok being an engine of propaganda from China.

Rich: That’s right. And I think now it’s a ban, which I don’t think is going to happen, or it’s U.S. interests—by the way, it’s worth noting, major VCs are invested in TikTok.

Paul: Oh, yeah. No, this is, it’s not, like—

Rich: They’re going to gather the money, everybody’s going to pass a hat around, and they’re going to turn this into an American company. And then I don’t know what happens after that to make sure that there are no more…

Paul: To be clear, I don’t think they can sell it. It’s too big. And it’s just going to be immediate antitrust for anyone who can buy it. So they have to spin out into an independent entity.

Rich: They have to raise the capital. I don’t know what the structure of the transaction will be, but essentially, I mean, Chinese nationals can’t own it, essentially, is what they’re saying. It has to come out of ByteDance as an entity.

Paul: So how does that work? I guess there’s some sort of, like…

Rich: There’s an M&A firm out there and there’s bankers out there.

Paul: Yeah, that’s true.

Rich: They’re about to have a really good time.

Paul: We’re just back to your friend who’s into golf on TikTok.

Rich: [laughing] Yeah.

Paul: No, for real. Him and a team of 75 people can work on this for six months.

Rich: That’s right. That’s right.

Paul: Yeah.

Rich: And look, is this good? I have no idea. Because I don’t know the reasons behind almost all of Congress, which can’t seem to agree on what to order for lunch.

Paul: Correct.

Rich: Agreed on this.

Paul: I mean, imagine—

Rich: So something must be pretty…

Paul: Imagine them ordering lunch.

Rich: It doesn’t happen. No one eats lunch.

Paul: No, they can’t. You can’t, Congress ordering it just immediately descends into, like, you can only have burgers, and some of them have to be veggie burgers. Like…

Rich: Yes.

Paul: Yeah.

Rich: I think, to close this out, here’s the sort of reflection I’m left with here is it just shows how powerful tech is. For the most powerful government on earth to decide that it has to intervene shows the sheer power of this stuff.

Paul: Well, especially because we do have, like, this is a very non-American outcome.

Rich: Right.

Paul: It is anti-capitalist. It is anti-free speech—because those people are practicing free speech. The Americans are using the platform to communicate.

Rich: Yes.

Paul: It is disruptive to a media platform. It is disruptive to the larger ecosystem of tools and services around TikTok. So this is an extremely non-American thing to do.

Rich: It really is. It really is.

Paul: I do think we’re hitting a moment, though. What is wild, we’re now on year ten of committee meetings in which kind of nothing happens. Like they say to Mark Zuckerberg, “Hey, buddy, we can’t wait to work with you to make it better.” Right? And this is a moment—now, granted, this is a Chinese company, so I’m sure that Congress enjoys getting its digs in.

Rich: Yeah.

Paul: Because they can get away with it. Right? You can’t—if you go after Mark Zuckerberg, you’re going after one of your Harvard own.

Rich: There’s an isolationist and slightly racist component to all of it.

Paul: That’s absolutely real. Right? But it’s also such a shot across the bow, right? Which is, hey, guys, you keep telling us that you have power, and you look at, like, an Andreessen Horowitz, which is just like, “Washington is DEAD, and only Silicon Valley and bitcoin and blah, blah, blah.”

Rich: And this is just asserted itself in a big way.

Paul: You and I have been saying for almost a decade that the government will need to assert itself, and it will need to, in order to continue to have power, it will need to assert itself against the tech industry. You know who I would be worried about, if I was looking at this? I would get real worried right now? OpenAI.

Rich: Interesting.

Paul: Because they’re doing a lot of things that tie into the same things. They can be used for propaganda, manipulation. They’re already a little squirrely. They got their Microsoft connection, but they’re just like a little all over the place. And then they’re like, hey, we can make videos of anything.

Rich: It’s a great point. Let’s close it on this. I mean, this is a great observation. We don’t have a clear insight into how the OpenAI macro-brain is gaining its intelligence. We don’t have a clear picture.

Paul: Just the other day they did an interview, Wall Street Journal did an interview with the CFO and asked if they spidered YouTube content to make their new video model.

Rich: The CTO.

Paul: CTO. And she just made this, like, ARGRRGRRR face, right? 

Rich: AI face? Did she make an AI face?

Paul: [laughing] Almost. Yeah.

Rich: Yeah, yeah.

Paul: And it was just, you know, it was clear, it was very hard to read that and not go like, oh, we absolutely spidered YouTube. But I don’t know. I can’t tell. [laughing]

Rich: I think that day is coming where they’re going. First off, there’s going to be those uncomfortable senate hearings, which are like, “Blrrr…”

Paul: Well, it’s not just that—now you have Google with, Google would love to just wreck OpenAI because it wrecked them. It hurt its feelings.

Rich: [laughing] Sure.

Paul: So if they can get, Google has pet congressmen.

Rich: Yeah.

Paul: Right? Like, this is all going to play out.

Rich: Oh they’re gonna—yeah. 100%.

Paul: I do think, I think we’ll see this TikTok drama play, and then I think we’ll see the rest of the social players. Who knows about X because he’s a goofball. But the rest of the large social networks, LinkedIn and Facebook and Instagram will be like, “Hey, yeah, that happened, we’re following the rules over here. You want to look at the books? No problem. Send Ernst & Young.”

Rich: Yeah.

Paul: And then I think Congress is going to need to keep engaging with this world. And I think it’s going to turn over to AI and go like, “Okay, we’re now going to have a regulatory framework,” because it feels good to pass a law, right? It feels good to tell ByteDance, “Hey, you are in trouble.”

Rich: I have to say, after the last two presidential elections and all the shenanigans that happened behind the scenes, I don’t have anything against TikTok or China. I’m kind of glad this happened, because it showed an assertive stance around really going off the rails here and losing control over how communication and how information gets to people and how people can be manipulated.

Paul: I think, to your point, though, what’s tricky is we just don’t really know why. And that bugs me.

Rich: We don’t really know why.

Paul: If you’re doing something at this scale, but you’re not being transparent with the people, and it has like 100 million users in the States or whatever the hell it has?

Rich: Yeah.

Paul: I feel that you got to come out with it.

Rich: It’s tricky because I think it’s—

Paul: It’s state secrets, and how did we get the information?

Rich: It’s intelligence sources.

Paul: Yeah.

Rich: So there’s that bit of it. But, yeah, I mean, you can go online and actually find strong cases for banning and not banning TikTok, because that’s the internet. So you’re not going to get a good answer. That’s just life.

Paul: No, that’s right.

Rich: This was a tangent, but I think a worthwhile one. This is fascinating.

Paul: Do you think they’re going to ban Aboard?

Rich: I hope not. Aboard is an American company, 100% American made.

Paul: Not really. [laughing]

Rich: Not really. Exactly.

Paul: But American-led. And you can’t—we’ll talk about global software development another time.

[outro music]

Rich: We’ve got an extremely exciting update coming, Paul. We call it Aboard 3 internally. It’s got AI in it—

Paul: You may not speak of it until it is out.

Rich: I know your stance on that, but I’m excited about it.

Paul: I am, too.

Rich: We will talk about it soon. Reach out to us. Hello@aboard.com. And have a wonderful week. Stay safe.

Paul: Bye!

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