I tried to upgrade to brave-nightly-bin-1.16.23-8 from the above and all bookmarks, session data, tabs, were all lost. It was as if starting brave for the first time. I shut it down and downgraded back to brave-nightly-bin-1.16.14 and everything from my profile came back.
I tried upgrading to 1.16.28 and it does the same thing.
It is like brave starting for the first time with everything default.
I feel dumb but there should have been a new release for such a large change with a release note telling you what to do. How can 1.16.14 and 1.16.28 be part of the same version?
The fix was:
p -R ~/.config/BraveSoftware/Brave-Browser ~/.config/BraveSoftware/Brave-Browser-Nightly
brave-browser points brave-browser-nightly which is a sh-cript that ends up executing /opt/brave.com/brave-nightly/brave
no more /usr/bin/brave or brave-nightly