Techmeme
December 23, 2019, 11:05 PM

Top News

New York Times:
US officials say ToTok, a chat app gaining popularity around the world, is a spying tool by the government of UAE; Google and Apple have now removed the app  —  ToTok, an Emirati messaging app that has been downloaded to millions of phones, is the latest escalation of a digital arms race.
Igor Bonifacic / Engadget:
Twitter blocks animated PNGs, saying a bug had allowed them, and that they did not respect autoplay settings so could be used to harm people sensitive to motion  —  Twitter will no longer animate PNG files after trolls hijacked the Epilepsy Foundation's handle and hashtags last month …
Chris Welch / The Verge:
Dish increases price of both Sling TV packages, Orange and Blue, by $5 to $30/month, gives all users 10 hours of cloud-based DVR storage and additional channels  —  The cheap days of Sling TV are over  —  The cheap days of Sling TV are over.  Dish's internet TV service is raising the price …
Wall Street Journal:
Sources: Bytedance is considering setting up a global headquarters for TikTok outside of China, as part of its effort to shake off its Chinese image  —  Singapore, London and Dublin are among cities being considered; no U.S. city made shortlist  —  Bytedance Inc. is considering setting …
CNBC:
Mike Bloomberg created a tech company called Hawkfish that's helping his 2020 campaign and employs ex-Facebook CMO Gary Briggs and ex-Foursquare CEO Jeff Glueck  —  - A technology company called Hawkfish, with former executives from Facebook and Foursquare, is helping Bloomberg's 2020 presidential bid.
Sergiu Gatlan / BleepingComputer:
Researchers: unpatched flaws in Citrix products leave 80,000+ businesses potentially vulnerable to unauthorized network access; Cisco shares steps to mitigate  —  A newly discovered vulnerability impacting the Citrix Application Delivery Controller (NetScaler ADC) and the Citrix Gateway …
ProPublica:
Sources show how Amazon repeatedly delayed or scrapped investments in common industry practices like onroad safety training, as it built out its driver network  —  ProPublica is a nonprofit newsroom that investigates abuses of power.  Sign up to receive our biggest stories as soon as they're published.
Max Rivlin-Nadler / The Intercept:
Emails show how ICE uses datasets from data brokers like Thomson Reuters alongside social media sleuthing to track down suspected illegal immigrants  —  Emails sent by Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials expose how ICE used social media and information gleaned by for-profit data brokers …
The Verge:
The 84 biggest flops, fails, and dead dreams of the 2010s, from the Fire phone and Google Glass to the undoing of net neutrality in the US  —  A decade of failures  —  The world never changes quite the way you expect.  But at The Verge, we've had a front-row seat while technology …
Wired:
San Francisco's surveillance law, which banned city agencies from using facial recognition in May, has been amended to allow for Face ID on city-issued iPhones  —  San Francisco quietly amends its municipal surveillance law to allow for Apple's Face ID, though the ban on facial recognition still applies.
Dan Primack / Axios:
DraftKings to go public via a reverse merger with a special purpose acquisition company and SBTech sports betting tech platform, targeting a $3.3B valuation  —  DraftKings on Monday announced that it will go public via a reverse merger with a blank-check acquisition company called Diamond Eagle …
New York Times:
Simply carrying a smartphone to a political rally could tie its owner to the event in commercial datasets, thanks to the realtime tracking tech in mundane apps  —  IN FOOTAGE FROM DRONES hovering above, the nighttime streets of Hong Kong look almost incandescent, a constellation of tens …

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Earlier Picks

Gabriel J.X. Dance / New York Times: