Techmeme
December 14, 2019, 1:45 AM

Top News

Ashley Carman / The Verge:
Apple and Spotify podcasts are available through Alexa-enabled devices in the US, starting today  —  Sad for HomePod  —  Starting today, Apple Podcasts is available through Amazon Alexa-enabled devices like Echo speakers.  People just have to say, “Alexa, play (insert show name here) on Apple Podcasts” to get a program.
Kurt Wagner / Bloomberg:
Facebook payroll data, including names, bank accounts, and pay info of 29K staff was compromised after unencrypted hard drives were stolen from employee car  —  - Some 29,000 current, former employees impacted by theft  — Unencrypted hard drives were stolen from payroll worker's car
Polina Marinova / Fortune:
WeWork sells SEO startup Conductor, which it bought for $113.6M, back to its management team, shuts down Spacious, which it acquired for $42.5M four months ago  —  As WeWork looks to sort out its future, the flashy startups it acquired are also seeking a new path forward.
Tom Warren / The Verge:
Microsoft's next-gen “Project Scarlett” Xbox to be called Xbox Series X and available holiday 2020 with support for frame rates of up to 120 fps and ray tracing  —  Xbox now looks like a PC  —  Microsoft's next-generation Xbox is officially called Xbox Series X. Microsoft revealed …
Richard Nieva / CNET:
Google says it has captured more than 10M miles of Street View imagery, and, via Google Earth, mapped out the parts of the world where 98% of people live  —  If Google were to have a mascot, it might be the Street View car, with its towering camera rig and corporate logo exterior.  There's good reason for that.
Li Yuan / New York Times:
Liu Jingyao, the college student who accused JD.com founder Richard Lui of rape, describes what it's like to be slut-shamed by the Chinese internet  —  Liu Jingyao, a college student, describes what it's like to be slut-shamed by 800 million people.  —  MINNEAPOLIS — When Liu Jingyao introduced herself …
Amanda Mull / The Atlantic:
How the concept of free shipping forces small e-commerce businesses to eat the cost of shipping, as large sellers like Amazon do so at scale  —  How retailers hide the costs of delivery—and why we're such suckers for their ploys  —  It was a pair of feather earrings that helped Ann Miceli get out from underneath strangers' cars.
Manish Singh / TechCrunch:
Reliance Industries has acquired an 85% stake in NowFloats, an Indian startup that helps small businesses and individuals build an online presence, for ~$20M  —  Reliance Industries, one of India's largest industrial houses, has acquired a majority stake in NowFloats, an Indian startup …
Jeff John Roberts / Fortune:
Researchers claim they used 3D masks and photos to deceive facial recognition systems used by Alipay, WeChat Pay, Schiphol Airport, and train stations in China  —  Masks and simple photographs are enough to fool some facial recognition technology, highlighting a major shortcoming in what is billed as a more effective security tool.

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