Twitter Will Ban User Ties to Violent Groups ‘Both On and Off the Platform’

Early Friday, Twitter announced changes to its policies on violent and hateful speech, some of them dramatic. Users will no longer be able to use “hateful images or symbols” in profile images or headers. And, in a step with few recent parallels, Twitter says users “may not affiliate with organizations that – whether by their own statements or activity both on and off the platform – use or promote violence against civilians to further their causes.”

The ban on violent affiliations, even when violent views aren’t promoted on Twitter itself, raises a number of questions about enforcement. Among those is whether or to what extent Twitter staff will monitor questionable groups’ behavior outside of the platform; whether only formally organized groups will be impacted; and where the line will be drawn between ‘official’ group stances and activity by group members.

Given the constantly-evolving way Twitter has enforced its existing rules, answers to those questions are only likely to be clear well after the new policies go into effect on December 18 — if ever.

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The ethical case for the new restrictions is likely straightforward to many – Twitter, along with Facebook and YouTube, have in recent years been accused of giving extremists including both Islamic terrorists and white supremacists a vast new platform. Under mounting public pressure, all three sites have taken increasingly stringent steps to limit access to extremist content or ban users who promote it.

But the business case for those moves is at least slightly more ambiguous. Earlier in its development, Twitter took an uncompromising free-speech stance, but over time it has become clear that such permissiveness bred harassment, which in turn may have alienated some users and throttled growth. By that logic, policing user affiliations could help build a larger, more mainstream user base.

On the other hand, at least some Twitter users have reveled in their ability to say whatever they wanted on the platform, for better or worse. Tighter restrictions could push away such users, and small upstarts – including the Twitter copycat Gab – are poised to poach them.

Verizon close to announcing digital streaming deal with NFL: Bloomberg

(Reuters) – Verizon Communications Inc, no. 1 U.S. wireless carrier, is close to a new deal with the National Football League for digital streaming rights, Bloomberg reported, citing people familiar with the matter.

The Verizon logo is seen on the side of a truck in New York City, U.S., October 13, 2016. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

With the new agreement, Verizon will be able to give subscribers access to games on all devices, including big-screen TVs, and not just phones, according to the people, Bloomberg said. (bloom.bg/2zNqtua)

Verizon will lose exclusive rights to air games on mobile devices, Bloomberg quoted two people as saying. Verizon’s rights will include the NFL’s Thursday night games, among others, one of the people said, according to Bloomberg.

Financial details and the duration of Verizon’s contract with the NFL could not immediately be learned, Bloomberg said.

Neither NFL nor Verizon could immediately be reached for a comment by Reuters.

Reporting by Vibhuti Sharma in BengaluruEditing by Sandra Maler

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

12 Things You Didn't Know About Webinars That Will Blow Your Mind

Ah, yes…the webinar. That online seminar that we know so well. The slides. The monotonous speaker. The boring topics. Pretty much sums up my webinars, at least!

And yet, webinars continue to thrive. We all know the reasons why. They’re inexpensive. Easily accessible. Relatively quick. Some people love them and some don’t. But there’s no question that webinars are here to stay. In fact, 73 percent of B2B marketers and sales leaders they say that a webinar is the best way to generate high-quality leads and 57 percent of them say they will continue to create webinars in 2018.

These facts were evident in GoToWebinar’s recently released 2017 Big Book of Webinar Stats.  The webinar service provider studied 351,000 online events conducted on their platform from over 16,000 of their customers.  So what did they find?  If your company does webinars get ready to be blown away…

1 – 61 percent of webinars are done for B2B purposes. They can be a great lead generation and educational tool for your customers, just so long as your customers are businesses.

2 – The best webinar titles include lists (10 ways or 101 ideas), or the words “how to”, “new” or “trends.”

3 – Their average customer does about 23 webinars per year. Remember – these are companies that are choosing webinars as a marketing strategy over other options. But twice a month seems reasonable. My company does about four per month.

4 – When it comes to marketing, 73 percent of a webinar’s attendees ultimately come from e-mail solicitations. A website listing and some search engine optimization is helpful but let’s admit it: e-mail is far from dead.

5 – You’re going to get the most sign-ups (69 percent) a week before the event with a third coming the actual day of the webinar. So focus your marketing on the 24-72 hours beforehand.

6 – However…15 percent of webinar registrants sign up as much as three to four weeks ahead of the event, so don’t be afraid to get the word out a month early.

7 – Most people register for a webinar on a Tuesday. Not sure why, but your marketing (and event day) should coordinate around that. Don’t worry if you can’t make that happen – Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays aren’t that far behind for registrants. But target your marketing between 8AM and 10AM (for the recipient) because that’s when the most people sign up.

8 – The most popular day for a webinar is…drumroll please…Thursdays!

9 – The most popular time for a webinar is…drumroll please…between 12PM to 3PM Eastern Time.

10 – The most popular length of a webinar is…drumroll please…60 to 90 minutes. Really? I thought shorter is sweeter but GoToWebinar found that people don’t mind longer online events. 60-minute webinars attract 2.1 times more registrations than 30-minute webinars, and 90-minute webinars attract 4.6 times as many. Over half of their webinars fall between 45 to 60 minutes.

11 – The vast majority of marketing webinars have fewer than 50 attendees. If you fall into this range, you’re doing fine.

12 – Actually it doesn’t really matter how many people attend your live event. 84% of B2B customers opt for replays over live webinars. So make sure you archive your webinars for future viewing.

I’d like to add a personal 13th:  I’ve found that more and more of our attendees like discussions rather than one person shuffling through slides. A roundtable.  A group conversation.  Maybe that’s related to the explosion in podcast popularity.  Or maybe it’s because people like to listen when they’re on the go and don’t want to be stuck staring at a screen.  Whatever, if you’re doing online events this year you should consider this change in format.

OK…mind blown. So is there any reason why we can’t make our online events successful in 2018?

Tezos organizers hit with second lawsuit over cryptocurrency fundraiser

(Reuters) – A second lawsuit was filed this week against the organizers of cybercurrency technology project Tezos, an initiative that raised $232 million to issue a cryptocurrency that does not exist and fund development of a transaction system that has no clear end date.

Tezos co-founder and CTO Arthur Breitman and his wife and co-founder Kathleen Breitman respond to questions during the Money 20/20 conference in Las Vegas, Nevada, U.S. on October 24, 2017. REUTERS/Steve Marcus

The class action lawsuit, filed in a U.S. District Court in Florida by Coral Springs-based law firm Silver Miller, alleges that Tezos’ organizers broke U.S. securities laws and defrauded and misled participants in the online fundraiser, according to court documents.

Special Report: Read Reuters original investigation into Tezos

Many who put money toward the initial coin offering consider themselves investors, but the funds were raised as non-refundable donations.

The lawsuit was filed on Monday and made public on Wednesday. The defendants are Kathleen and Arthur Breitman, the co-founders of the project; their Delaware-based company Dynamic Ledger Solutions Inc, which owns the rights to the transaction system’s code; and the Tezos Foundation, a Swiss entity that was set up to carry out the fundraiser.

It is the second lawsuit in less than a month to hit the embattled project that in July raised funds in one of the largest ever initial coin offerings, a popular way for technology startups to collect money by issuing cryptocurrencies.

Neither Brian Klein, an attorney for the Breitmans, nor Johann Gevers, president of the Tezos Foundation, immediately responded to requests for comment.

The lawsuit quotes from a Reuters investigation and reports published in October that revealed details of a backroom battle between the Breitmans and Gevers over control of the project. The dispute has delayed the project. (reut.rs/2yGk6IT)

The lawsuit alleges that contributors to the fundraiser were not told that it could take more than three years for the Swiss foundation, which holds the funds, to purchase Dynamic Ledger Solutions and the project’s source code.

This time frame, revealed by Reuters, was not disclosed to investors despite being “a highly material fact,” the lawsuit alleges.

Plaintiffs are asking for a refund as well as damages, according to the lawsuit. It also alleges organizers sold unregistered securities.

“As a result of Defendants’ fraud, false representations and violation of federal and state securities laws in connection with the Tezos ICO, Plaintiff and the Class Members state their demand that the Contract be rescinded and canceled,” the lawsuit states.

Other law firms have said they are considering litigation.

Reporting by Anna Irrera and Steve Stecklow; Editing by Lauren Tara LaCapra and Cynthia Osterman

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

GE: When Will Shares Become Attractive?

By Bob Ciura

To say that General Electric (GE) has had a difficult year would be an understatement. Shares of the industrial conglomerate have lost over 40% of their value year-to-date.

Chart

GE Year to Date Price Returns (Daily) data by YCharts

GE’s fundamentals have deteriorated in 2017, and the decline accelerated in the most recent quarter. GE has performed so poorly this year that it made the difficult decision to cut its dividend by 50%.

The dividend cut, while painful, allows GE to reset its capital allocation program. Along with cost cuts, it will free up billions of cash that GE can invest to improve its under-performing businesses.

GE has been in operation for more than 100 years. Prior to the dividend cut, GE had a dividend yield well above 3%. These qualities placed GE on Sure Dividend’s list of blue-chip stocks. You can see our entire list of blue chip stocks here.

It is reasonable to question whether GE still deserves recognition as a blue chip. But it is important to remember that GE is still a highly profitable company, with growth potential. If the stock continues to drop, it could soon become a value opportunity.

News Overview

At its 2017 investor meeting, GE announced a number of new policies. First and foremost, it cut its quarterly dividend by 50%, to $0.12 per share. GE also lowered its earnings guidance, below analyst consensus.

For 2017, GE expects earnings-per-share of $1.05-$1.10. For fiscal 2018, GE expects adjusted earnings-per-share of $1.00-$1.07, compared with analyst expectations of $1.14. GE has gotten to a position where it simply isn’t growing. The company had become a lumbering giant, with an overly complex web of businesses that could no longer be managed effectively.

GE will focus on three core businesses for growth: health care, aviation, and power. This makes sense, as these are GE’s three largest businesses, together comprising over 50% of annual revenue. These three businesses also have the strongest growth prospects moving forward.

As a result, while there was not much for investors to be encouraged about from the investor update, GE’s portfolio trimming could help position the company for a return to growth down the road.

Growth Prospects

GE’s strongest areas of growth moving forward are health care and aviation. The aviation and healthcare businesses posted 7% orders growth last quarter. GE’s industrial backlog grew by 3% for the quarter, to $328 billion.

Source: Investor Update Presentation, page 25

GE’s aviation business is the flagship of the industrial operation. At the same time, GE is hoping to improve performance in the power business, while continuing the strong performance of the aviation business.

Source: Investor Update Presentation, page 12

These two areas will fuel GE’s long-term growth. GE will also utilize asset sales to streamline its portfolio. The company will shed $20 billion of low-growth businesses over the next one to two years, such as transportation and lighting. The positive aspect of GE’s asset sales is that the company can improve its balance sheet.

GE is targeting a net-debt-to-EBITDA ratio of 2.5, which would be a healthy amount of leverage. An improved balance sheet would help keep GE’s cost of capital low and further reduce the burden on the company’s dividend.

The turnaround initiatives and cost cuts will help the company become more efficient. Management expects as much as 3% organic revenue growth in 2018, including 7%-10% growth in aviation. If GE’s earnings bottom out and return to growth, the stock could be an attractive value here.

Valuation & Expected Returns

GE stock has lost over 40% of its value year-to-date. With such a huge decline, value investors might begin to view the stock as a buying opportunity. GE might not be there yet, but it’s getting close.

Based on the midpoint of fiscal 2017 earnings guidance, GE stock trades for a price-to-earnings ratio of 16.6. GE is still valued slightly above its 10-year average price-to-earnings ratio, of 15.9.

Source: Value Line

As a result, it would not be surprising if GE shares continued to fall. Investor sentiment has become very pessimistic, meaning GE’s valuation could continue to contract.

However, at some point GE would become attractive. If GE traded at its average valuation over the past 10 years, it would have a share price of $16.45 based on the midpoint of 2018 guidance. This price is approximately 8% below the November 14th closing price of $17.90.

From a dividend perspective, a 3% dividend yield would be an attractive entry point for GE. At the new annual dividend rate of $0.48, this would result in a share price of $16.

Therefore, there is potential for further downside for GE stock. But at a price near $16, the stock is attractive on the basis of valuation and dividend yield.

Assuming GE returns to earnings growth in 2019 and beyond, the stock could generate positive total returns. Positive organic revenue growth, along with margin expansion and cash returns, could fuel returns as follows:

  • 1%-2% organic revenue growth
  • 0.5%-1% margin expansion
  • 2% share repurchases
  • 2.7% dividend yield

Based on this, total returns could reach approximately 6%-8% per year.

Dividend Analysis

The new quarterly dividend rate of $0.12 per share works out to a $0.48 per share annual payout. This is a 50% dividend cut, but will save GE approximately $4 billion per year. GE’s right-sized dividend is more in-line with the cash flow of the company, given the massive divestments that have taken place over the past year.

The bad news is the dividend yield drops significantly. GE’s forward dividend yield is 2.7%.

Source: Investor Update Presentation, page 16

The good news is, GE’s new dividend has much better coverage than the previous payout, which took up more than 100% of free cash flow. GE needed to cut its dividend. After the massive sale of multiple financial businesses as well as poor performance in power and oil and gas, the dividend cut was necessary. The new $0.48 per-share annual payout represents a free cash flow payout ratio of 60%-70%, which is manageable.

In a previous article, I argued investors should avoid GE at least until the results of the November 13th investor meeting. At that time, I stated that if GE were to cut the dividend, the stock could fall to $18 or below. Dividend cuts are typically accompanied by a drop in the share price.

Sure enough, GE did cut the dividend, and the stock has indeed fallen below $18. At this point, it is reasonable to wonder if the selling is overdone. After all, GE is still a massive company and is an industrial giant and economic bellwether. If GE continues to decline to a 3%+ dividend yield and a price-to-earnings ratio in the mid-teens, the stock becomes more attractive.

Final Thoughts

There is no doubt that GE has struggled over the past year. The reduced guidance and dividend cut are a disappointment, and are a reflection of the company’s poor financial performance. However, GE is not a doomed company. It remains one of the strongest brands in the U.S., with a leadership position across multiple industries.

GE is still a profitable company, and its turnaround initiatives will help slim down the company for an eventual return to growth. The balance sheet is in better shape as well. While there could be further downside risk for the shares, given the highly negative sentiment right now, at some point GE will become an attractive value.

There are many industrial stocks with longer histories of dividend growth than GE. Find out which ones are confirmed buys or sells with our service Undervalued Aristocrats, which provides actionable buy and sell recommendations on some of the most undervalued dividend growth stocks around. Click here to learn more.

Disclosure: I/we have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.

I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I am not receiving compensation for it (other than from Seeking Alpha). I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.

U.S. Government Issues Alert About North Korean Hacking

The U.S. government on Tuesday issued a technical alert about cyber attacks it said are sponsored by the North Korean government that have targeted the aerospace, telecommunications and financial industries since 2016.

The alert, from the FBI and Department of Homeland Security, said North Korean hackers were using a type of malware known as “FALLCHILL” to gain entry to computer systems and compromise network systems.

The FBI and DHS had issued a warning in June that squarely blamed the North Korean government for a raft of cyber attacks stretching back to 2009 targeting media, aerospace and financial sectors, as well as critical infrastructure, in the United States and globally.

Tuesday’s alert included the publication of IP addresses the FBI said were linked to the hacking campaign and was intended to help private industry guard against the attacks.

The FALLCHILL malware was described as providing hackers with wide latitude to monitor and disrupt infected systems. The malware typically gained access to systems as a file sent via other North Korean malware or when users unknowingly downloaded it by visiting sites compromised by the hackers.

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The new alert coincides with increasing tensions between Washington and Pyongyang over North Korea’s missile tests. The previous warning, in June, said that North Korea would continue to rely on cyber operations to advance its military and strategic objectives.

North Korea has routinely denied involvement in cyber attacks against other countries.

Violin rises from ashes with new products planned for 2018

Flash storage pioneer Violin Memory has emerged from bankruptcy and is aiming for new file, cloud and object access additions to its products in 2018 plus software-defined storage, with NVMe systems planned for 2019.

But it will not rush into the NVMe market, said CEO Ebrahim Abbasi, who spelt out the lessons he believed had been learned from the events that led to Violin’s bankruptcy earlier this year.

“The company went public [in 2013], money was spent and there wasn’t much focus on the future,” he said.

“The company was run by smart people and they thought they could conquer the world. But successful companies should be prepared to be copied and they missed out on getting to the maturation phase.”

Key products for Violin are still the 7650 and 7450 all-flash arrays launched last September and the high-availability stretch cluster that can link Violin instances at up to 100km.

Building on this, in the second quarter out of bankruptcy, Abbasi said Violin has “regained the confidence of customers”,  provided cashflow with “a positive line of sight to profit” and is providing 24/7 support. It is also looking at software acquisitions, he said.

The company is now planning its next product phases, said Abbasi. By mid-2018, Violin plans to introduce file and block access storage on the same platform. Currently, its products are block access only.

By the end of next year, it aims to provide access to the public cloud as a tier of storage, storage quality of service policies, products delivered as software-defined storage and object storage capabilities.

Abbasi said the company is looking at “mid- to late 2019” as a release date for Violin NVMe-based products. “There are no precise dates we can give,” he said. “We are filing for 45 patents.

“We’ve got our own SSD technology and we will not abandon leadership in IOPS and latency.”

Violin will have a patient approach to NVMe, said Abbasi. “When the market is ready to monetise NVMe and use it operationally, we will be ready,” he said.

NVMe, 3D NAND and 3D Xpoint will revolutionise storage, but the architectures to take advantage of them are not ready, nor are customers. We have got patents and we are doing our homework. We won’t rush to market.”

Qualcomm draws up plans to rebuff Broadcom's $103 billion offer: sources

(Reuters) – U.S. chipmaker Qualcomm Inc (QCOM.O) is making preparations to reject rival Broadcom Ltd’s (AVGO.O) $103 billion bid as early as this week, four people familiar with the matter said on Sunday, setting the stage for one of the biggest-ever takeover battles.

A building on the Qualcomm campus is seen, as chip maker Broadcom Ltd announced an unsolicited bid to buy peer Qualcomm Inc for $103 billion, in San Diego, California, U.S. November 6, 2017. REUTERS/Mike Blake

Qualcomm’s board of directors could meet as early as Sunday to review the unsolicited acquisition offer and decide on its strategy, the sources said. The preparations for the board meeting indicate that Qualcomm is poised to rebuff the bid as insufficient as early as Monday, although it may decide to spend a few more days this week to prepare its full response to Broadcom, the sources added.

Qualcomm Chief Executive Steven Mollenkopf has spent the past few days soliciting feedback from Qualcomm shareholders, and feels that Qualcomm’s $70-per-share bid undervalues the company and does not price in the uncertainty associated with getting the deal approved by regulators, according to the sources.

Broadcom CEO Hock Tan, who said earlier this month he would redomicile his company to the United States from Singapore, has stated he is open to launching a takeover battle. The sources said Broadcom was preparing to submit a slate of directors by Qualcomm’s Dec. 8 nomination deadline. That would allow Qualcomm shareholders to vote to replace the company’s board and force it to engage with Broadcom.

FILE PHOTO: A sign on the Qualcomm campus is seen, as chip maker Broadcom Ltd announced an unsolicited bid to buy peer Qualcomm Inc for $103 billion, in San Diego, California, U.S. November 6, 2017. REUTERS/Mike Blake/File Photo

Broadcom has also been deliberating the possibility of raising its bid for Qualcomm, including through more debt financing, some of the sources said, although it was not clear when Broadcom would choose to make such a move.

The sources asked not to be identified because the deliberations are confidential. Qualcomm and Broadcom did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Slideshow (2 Images)

Qualcomm provides chips to carrier networks to deliver broadband and mobile data. It is engaged in a patent infringement dispute with Apple Inc (AAPL.O), and is also trying to close its $38 billion acquisition of automotive chipmaker NXP Semiconductors NV (NXPI.O) after signing a deal in October 2016. Broadcom has indicated it is willing to acquire Qualcomm irrespective of whether it closes the NXP deal.

NXP shares have been trading above Qualcomm’s offer price, as many NXP shareholders, including hedge fund Elliott Management Corp, have been holding out for a better price. Qualcomm does not plan to significantly raise its price for NXP as a defensive strategy to make its acquisition by Broadcom more expensive, according to one of the sources.

Qualcomm shares closed at $64.57 on Friday, while Broadcom ended at $264.96.

Reporting by Greg Roumeliotis in New York and Liana B. Baker in San Francisco; Editing by Peter Cooney

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

MakeSpace, the ‘Cloud Storage for Physical Stuff’ Startup, Swaps Out Its CEO

MakeSpace, a well-funded startup that emerged from the recent explosion of on-demand services companies, has replaced its CEO, the company confirmed to WIRED. Co-founder Sam Rosen has stepped down and co-founder and COO Rahul Gandhi will become CEO. The company says the departure, which has been in the works for the last month, was “completely amicable” and plans to announce the news Monday morning.

MakeSpace was founded in 2013 amid a surge in interest from investors and consumers in new on-demand services enabled by mobile phones. The company sold itself as a “cloud storage for physical stuff” a concept that contributed to some observers declaring the on-demand trend—”Uber for X“—had gone too far. Indeed, self-storage units for peoples’ junk is more of a tech-enabled service than a digital innovation, but investors took the idea seriously. MakeSpace raised more than $57 million in venture funding from investors including NBA star Carmelo Anthony, rap legend Nas (Nasir Jones), and the investment firm of the Winklevoss brothers.

MakeSpace’s service picks up, stores, and delivers items to storage units for its customers for a monthly fee. Since it launched, a number of copycats have flooded the market, something Gandhi says is a positive thing. “The market is continuing to grow and get stronger. That makes us a lot more confident that the service we’re building has a huge need in the market,” he says.

MakeSpace’s most recent round of funding, a $30 million Series C from venture firm 8VC, closed in December of last year. It valued MakeSpace at $100 million. Rosen had planned to raise more money in the fall of this year, a move Gandhi describes as “proactive.” Those plans have now been put on hold until next year. Gandhi says the company has enough capital to last it through next year, and that MakeSpace’s cost of acquiring customers does not exceed that of the old-school storage unit companies it competes with. The company has “tens of thousands” of customers across four cities, with approximately 225 employees, Gandhi says.

There may be additional announcements regarding the company’s team and strategy in the coming weeks, Gandhi says, noting that there are no plans for layoffs, closing facilities, or changing its pricing structure. The company expects more than one of MakeSpace’s markets to hit profitability next year.

Louis C.K. Responds After New York Times Report and Being Dropped by Netflix, The Orchard

Hollywood studios are moving quickly to distance themselves from Louis C.K. one day after a bombshell The New York Times report surfaced allegations from multiple women who accused the comedian of masturbating in front of them without their consent. On Friday, the comedian admitted that the allegations against him are true and issued an apology (see below).

The independent film studio The Orchard said in a statement on Friday that it “will not be moving forward with the release of I Love You, Daddy—the movie that Louis C.K. wrote, directed, and starred in—which was supposed to hit theaters November 17. The studio previously cancelled the movie’s New York premiere event on Thursday in advance of the Times‘ story.

The Orchard paid a reported $5 million to acquire worldwide distribution rights to the film in September after the movie made a well-received debut at the Toronto International Film Festival. (The deal was the largest to come out of that festival this year.) Even before yesterday’s huge allegations, Louis C.K. had been drawing criticism over I Love You, Daddy, which features some questionable content and offensive language, including a storyline where a character’s 17-year-old daughter has a romantic relationship with a 68-year-old man.

Meanwhile, multiple media giants also took a step back from Louis C.K. on Friday. Netflix announced that it will not move forward with a planned stand-up special featuring the comedian, who signed a deal with the streaming service to create two comedy specials earlier this year. The first of those two stand-up specials started streaming on Netflix in April.

“The allegations made by several women in The New York Times about Louis C.K.’s behavior are disturbing,” a Netflix spokesperson said in a statement provided to Fortune. “Louis’s unprofessional and inappropriate behavior with female colleagues has led us to decide not to produce a second stand-up special, as had been planned.”

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On Friday afternoon, Louis C.K. issued a statement verifying the accounts of five women who accused him of sexual misconduct in The New York Times‘ report. Here is the comedian’s full statement:

I want to address the stories told to the New York Times by five women named Abby, Rebecca, Dana, Julia who felt able to name themselves and one who did not.

These stories are true. At the time, I said to myself that what I did was okay because I never showed a woman my dick without asking first, which is also true. But what I learned later in life, too late, is that when you have power over another person, asking them to look at your dick isn’t a question. It’s a predicament for them. The power I had over these women is that they admired me. And I wielded that power irresponsibly.

I have been remorseful of my actions. And I’ve tried to learn from them. And run from them. Now I’m aware of the extent of the impact of my actions. I learned yesterday the extent to which I left these women who admired me feeling badly about themselves and cautious around other men who would never have put them in that position.
I also took advantage of the fact that I was widely admired in my and their community, which disabled them from sharing their story and brought hardship to them when they tried because people who look up to me didn’t want to hear it. I didn’t think that I was doing any of that because my position allowed me not to think about it.
There is nothing about this that I forgive myself for. And I have to reconcile it with who I am. Which is nothing compared to the task I left them with.

I wish I had reacted to their admiration of me by being a good example to them as a man and given them some guidance as a comedian, including because I admired their work.

The hardest regret to live with is what you’ve done to hurt someone else. And I can hardly wrap my head around the scope of hurt I brought on them. I’d be remiss to exclude the hurt that I’ve brought on people who I work with and have worked with who’s professional and personal lives have been impacted by all of this, including projects currently in production: the cast and crew of Better Things, Baskets, The Cops, One Mississippi, and I Love You Daddy. I deeply regret that this has brought negative attention to my manager Dave Becky who only tried to mediate a situation that I caused. I’ve brought anguish and hardship to the people at FX who have given me so much The Orchard who took a chance on my movie. and every other entity that has bet on me through the years.
I’ve brought pain to my family, my friends, my children and their mother.

I have spent my long and lucky career talking and saying anything I want. I will now step back and take a long time to listen.

Thank you for reading.

Time Warner’s HBO said it is removing the comedian from its lineup of performers for Jon Stewart’s annual fundraiser Night of Too Many Stars: America Unites for Autism when it airs on the cable network later this month, and HBO also said it is “removing Louis C.K.’s past projects from its On Demand services.”

And 21st Century Fox’s FX Networks, which airs the comedian’s comedy series Louie (along with projects Louis C.K. executive produces, like Better Things and Baskets) said in a statement on Thursday that the network is “obviously very troubled by the allegations” against the comedian and that “the matter is currently under review.”