Techmeme
May 23, 2019, 10:05 PM

Top News

Joseph Cox / VICE:
Multiple sources and emails describe how Snap employees used internal tools like SnapLion to access user data several years ago, before Snap restricted access  —  Multiple sources and emails also describe SnapLion, an internal tool used by various departments to access Snapchat user data.
Matt Day / Bloomberg:
Source: Amazon is working on a wearable voice-activated health and wellness device that works with a mobile app and can recognize human emotions  —  - Described as a health product, it would work with a mobile app  — Machines that can understand emotions are a sci-fi staple
Guy Rosen / Facebook:
Facebook releases an update on enforcing its community standards, saying it banned 2.19B fake accounts in Q1 2019, up from 1.2B in Q4 2018  —  Today, we're publishing our third Community Standards Enforcement Report, covering Q4 2018 and Q1 2019.  This report adds a few additional data points:
The Keyword:
Google says it has partnered with delivery services including DoorDash and Postmates to let users order food via Google Search, Maps, or Assistant in the US  —  French fries, lettuce wraps, massaman curry, chicken wings, cupcakes—I could go on.  When I was pregnant with my son last year, my cravings were completely overpowering.
Ashley Carman / The Verge:
Instagram says IGTV will now support landscape video, following feedback from creators and users, as the service struggles to gain traction  —  The vertical video experiment is over  —  Instagram is no longer all-in on vertical video.  The company announced today that its longform video offshoot …
Devin Coldewey / TechCrunch:
Samsung researchers detail a machine learning method that can recreate lifelike motion from just a single image of a person's face  —  Machine learning researchers have produced a system that can recreate lifelike motion from just a single frame of a person's face, opening up the possibility …
Aislinn Keely / The Block:
AT&T says customers can now pay their mobile bills in cryptocurrency via BitPay  —  Cryptocurrency is taking another step towards the mainstream as mobile carrier AT&T announced it would accept payments in crypto today, according to a release from the company.
Frederic Lardinois / TechCrunch:
GitHub launches Sponsors, a tool that lets users pay their favorite open source contributors; developers can opt in to a “Sponsor me” button on repositories  —  GitHub today launched Sponsors, a new tool that lets you give financial support to open-source developers through recurring monthly payments.
Drew Harwell / Washington Post:
A distorted video of Speaker Pelosi, in which her speech is made to appear slurred, has 2M+ views on Facebook; YouTube says it has removed uploads of the video  —  Distorted videos of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), altered to make her sound as if she's drunkenly slurring her words …
Anthony Ha / TechCrunch:
Rotten Tomatoes says it will now calculate the Audience Score using only ratings or reviews from users whose ticket purchase has been verified through Fandango  —  Review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes is taking additional steps to confirm that audience members actually see a movie before leaving a rating or review.
Nico Grant / Bloomberg:
Interviews with Marc Benioff and 18 associates and current and former Salesforce employees show his instinctual and sometimes mystifying M&A strategy  —  Marc Benioff's acquisitions have kept the software giant growing at an incredible rate.  He's also made some costly errors.
Ingrid Lunden / TechCrunch:
Shopify quietly acquired Handshake, an e-commerce platform for B2B wholesale purchasing, source says for less than $100M; Handshake was last valued at ~$54M  —  E-commerce platform Shopify has quietly made an acquisition to continue its expansion of the services and products that merchants can sell and purchase through its platform.
Will Sommer / The Daily Beast:
Twitter permanently bans Brian and Ed Krassenstein, who frequently shared anti-Trump sentiments, alleging they ran fake accounts and purchased fake interactions  —  Ed and Brian Krassenstein are banned for life after ‘operating multiple fake accounts and purchasing account interactions,’ a Twitter spokesman said.
Mark Scott / Politico:
GDPR has helped big tech companies cement their dominance in the data economy while smaller companies have suffered from relatively high compliance costs  —  The region's data protection overhaul was supposed to help citizens.  Instead, it's helped Big Tech.

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