Techmeme
November 6, 2019, 11:10 PM

Top News

Washington Post:
DOJ charges two ex-Twitter employees, arresting one, with spying for Saudi Arabia by snooping on kingdom critics; one allegedly accessed 6,000 accounts in 2015  —  The Justice Department has charged two former Twitter employees with spying for Saudi Arabia in a case that raises concerns …
Lauren Feiner / CNBC:
After the deaths of five people at a “party house”, Airbnb unveils new safety policies: verifying 100% of listings, a 24/7 “neighbor hotline”, and more  —  Airbnb CEO: We intend to verify 100% of listings  —  Airbnb is pushing out several new safety features in the wake …
Jennifer Elias / CNBC:
Source: Alphabet is probing execs, including Chief Legal Officer David Drummond, over inappropriate relationships, hiring an outside law firm  —  - The board of Google parent company Alphabet is conducting an investigation into sexual misconduct by executives, and has hired a law firm to assist.
Reuters:
Court filing demanding subpoenaed docs reveals California has been probing Facebook's disclosure of user data to Cambridge Analytica and others for 18 months  —  WASHINGTON (Reuters) - California is investigating Facebook Inc's disclosure of user data to Cambridge Analytica and other partners …
C Nivedita / Reuters:
Square reports Q3 revenue of $1.27B, up 44% YoY, as gross payment volume grows to $28.2B, up 25% YoY, and Cash App revenue more than doubles to $159M  —  (Reuters) - Payments processor Square Inc (SQ.N) beat analysts' estimates for quarterly profit on Wednesday, as it earned more from its subscription and services business.
More: ZDNet
Lily Hay Newman / Wired:
Google debuts App Defense Alliance, a partnership with ESET, Lookout, Zimperium to catch Android malware early by streamlining and boosting data sharing efforts  —  The newly formed App Defense Alliance will try to solve a malware problem that has bedeviled the Play Store since inception.
Christina Farr / CNBC:
Apple and the US Department of Veterans announce that veterans can now access their health records on their iPhone via Apple's Health app  —  - The goal is to make it a lot easier for vets to access their medical information, even if they seek care from multiple providers.
Ben Dooley / New York Times:
Following SoftBank's first loss in 14 years, CEO Masayoshi Son says his WeWork bet was a mistake, describing it as a “harsh lesson”, and vows to move forward  —  Masayoshi Son defended the Japanese company's investment, while admitting he misjudged the American firm's founder, Adam Neumann.
Pavel Alpeyev / Bloomberg:
Casey Newton / The Verge:
Twitter announces Topics, which lets users follow 300+ subjects in their timeline, rolling out from Thursday; topics include sports and gaming but not politics  —  Starting with more than 300 subjects across sports, gaming, and entertainment  —  Recently, a friend told me he wanted to spend …
Reuters:
Court docs: Facebook execs discussed a plan in 2012 to cut off access to user data for developers seen as future rivals while pushing a user privacy narrative  —  SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Facebook Inc (FB.O) began cutting off access to user data for app developers from 2012 to squash potential rivals …
Jay Peters / The Verge:
Google says it is open sourcing the phone-based VR software of Cardboard, less than a month after the company discontinued its Daydream View VR headset  —  Maybe the last nail in the coffin for phone-based VR  —  In October, Google officially discontinued its Daydream View VR headset …
Dave Gershgorn / OneZero:
Conor Dougherty / New York Times:
Apple, Facebook, and Google have pledged a combined $4.5B to end California's housing crisis, but the money will do little to solve systemic issues  —  Efforts by Apple, Facebook and Google to address the California housing crunch must contend with the forces that created it.
Bloomberg:
NTSB: the Uber self-driving test car that killed a pedestrian in Tempe, Arizona last year wasn't programmed to recognize and react to jaywalkers  —  - U.S. safety board releases documents on fatal 2018 accident  — Pedestrian hit, killed by experimental self-driving Uber car
Adi Robertson / The Verge:
Facebook says ~100 app developers might have had improper access to Groups member data even after the company announced restrictions to Groups API last year  —  At least 11 accessed data in the last two months  —  Facebook says that even after it locked down its Groups system last year …
New York Times:
In an attempt to curb gaming addiction, China releases new rules for gamers under 18, including a 90-minute daily limit and no gaming between 10PM and 8AM  —  Officials say regulations are meant to curb video game addiction, which they blame for a rise in nearsightedness and poor academic performance.
Chris O'Brien / VentureBeat:
Avaaz: false stories on Facebook had 158M views in 2019, greater than before the 2016 election, with 86M views in the last 3 months, up 3x over the prior 3  —  Facebook has already powered 158 million views of fake U.S. political news in 2019 and is poised to see an explosion of disinformation next year …
Ron Miller / TechCrunch:
Chronosphere, founded by two ex-Uber engineers, raises $11M Series A for a scalable, cloud-native production monitoring tool able to handle Uber-level scale  —  Chronoshere, a startup from two ex-Uber engineers, who helped create the open source M3 monitoring project to handle Uber-level scale …
Tweets: @sameerpatel
Zack Whittaker / TechCrunch:
Apple has updated its privacy pages for the fourth year in a row, now includes several technical whitepapers detailing some of its technologies  —  For the fourth year in a row, Apple has updated its privacy pages.  —  Every year the tech giant's refreshes the privacy portion of its website …

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