Techmeme
February 7, 2019, 7:40 PM

Top News

Jeff Bezos:
Jeff Bezos publishes letters from AMI that he says show threats to publish his nude photos unless he backs off from criticizing AMI's coverage  —  Something unusual happened to me yesterday.  Actually, for me it wasn't just unusual—it was a first.  I was made an offer I couldn't refuse.
BBC:
Germany orders Facebook to stop combining data from WhatsApp, Instagram, and third-party sites with data in a user's main Facebook account without their consent  —  Germany's competition authority has told Facebook it can only continue gathering so much data about users from beyond its app and website if it gets individuals' consent.
Zack Whittaker / TechCrunch:
Apple says it has notified app developers to remove code that lets them record how a user interacts with their apps without explicit user consent  —  Apple is telling app developers to remove code that allows them to effectively record how a user interacts with their iPhone apps …
Jason Hiner / CNET:
Google Fiber to shut down in Louisville on April 15 after an experimental “nanotrenching” technique to deploy fiber in trenches only two inches deep, failed  —  Google's trick to more rapidly and cheaply deploy its super-speedy Google Fiber project has hit a wall …
Johana Bhuiyan / Los Angeles Times:
Investigation finds that Amazon at times uses tips earned by contracted drivers of its Flex program to cover their promised base pay  —  Amazon at times dips into the tips earned by contracted delivery drivers to cover their promised pay, a Times review of emails and receipts reveals.
Zac Hall / 9to5Mac:
Apple releases iOS 12.1.4 with a fix for the Group FaceTime bug, says a security audit of FaceTime revealed a bug in Live Photos on FaceTime, which it has fixed  —  Apple has turned its Group FaceTime feature back on following the release of iOS 12.1.4 for iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch.
Ingrid Lunden / TechCrunch:
Twitter reports Q4 revenue of $909M, up 24% YoY, ad revenue of $791M, up 23% YoY, net income of $244M, and MAUs of 321M, down by 9M YoY; stock closes down 9%+  —  After strong results from Facebook and Snap this quarter, all eyes were on Twitter to see if the other big …
Manish Singh / VentureBeat:
News aggregator Nuzzel sold to Scroll, which is building a news subscription service; Nuzzel founder Jonathan Abrams and COO Kent Lindstrom to leave the company  —  News aggregator Nuzzel has found a new home and leadership and is undergoing some product changes.
Kyle Wiggers / VentureBeat:
Amazon joins Microsoft in expressing support for regulating facial recognition tech, offers guidelines for the “responsible use” of the technology  —  Amazon supports the creation of a “legislative framework” covering facial recognition technology.
Stephen Nellis / Reuters:
Sources: Apple has moved its modem engineering unit to its in-house hardware technology group led by Johny Srouji, Apple's SVP of hardware technologies  —  Apple Inc has moved its modem chip engineering effort into its in-house hardware technology group from its supply chain unit …
Dami Lee / The Verge:
Spotify's new Terms of Service, which go into effect on March 1, will give Spotify the authority to immediately terminate accounts that use ad blockers  —  Cracking down on ad blockers  —  Spotify is now explicitly banning ad blockers, as stated in an updated Terms of Service policy sent out today.
Sean Gallagher / Ars Technica:
Jack'd, a gay dating app with 1M+ downloads from the Play store, stored users' images, posted and marked as private in chat sessions, on an unsecured AWS server  —  Online-Buddies was exposing its Jack'd users' private images and location; disclosing posed a risk.
More: BBC
Victoria Song / Gizmodo:
Microsoft introduces background blur feature to Skype, which uses AI to detect the user's hair, hands, and arms, and blur distracting objects in the background  —  Slobs of the world, don't work too hard KonMari-ing your apartment or office ahead of your next important Skype call.
Ryan Whitwam / Android Police:
Opera says it has started testing a free, unlimited VPN feature in its Android browser, available now for beta users worldwide  —  ISPs are generally not trustworthy, so many internet users have turned to VPNs.  Opera used to offer a popular free VPN on Android, but it retired the service last year.

Sponsor Posts

Smartsheet:
Gartner research vice president Mike Gotta to present at Smartsheet ENGAGE  —  Gotta will discuss why collaborative work management is increasingly essential for business at Smartsheet's annual customer conference Sept. 30-Oct. 3 in Seattle.
TWiT.tv:
Windows Weekly Covers Everything Microsoft  —  Hear what's happening with Windows, Office, Enterprise, Azure, Xbox, plus reviews with hosts Leo Laporte, Mary Jo Foley, and Paul Thurrott on TWiT.tv's Windows Weekly podcast.
Google Fi:
Google Fi - a phone plan, by Google  —  We felt that most phone plans just weren't made with you in mind.  So that's why we built Google Fi with features that real people actually want.  Click to learn more.
Zoho:
Why does your employees happiness quotient matter?  —  It is Monday morning.  Everything is a blur and everyone is in a hurry.  Most people are heading to work, still not fully recovered from the weekend, and it's written all over their faces.
Ingram Micro:
Apply for the World's Largest Startup Competition  —  B2B ISVs are encouraged to apply for the Comet Competition ahead of the September 30 deadline, with top prize of $1M made possible by Ingram Micro.
Intel:
The field of opportunity for AI is immense—does your CPU have AI Inside?  —  Here are three questions every technology buyer should be asking of their AI tech supplier.

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Mike Wheatley / SiliconANGLE: