August 19, 2020, 10:20 AM

Top News

Adi Robertson / The Verge:
Oculus will soon require all of its VR headset users to sign up with a Facebook account, removing support for new separate Oculus accounts in October  —  Support for separate Oculus accounts will end in 2023  —  Oculus will soon require all of its virtual reality headset users to sign up with a Facebook account.
Janko Roettgers / Protocol:
Facebook says it will add native support for Zoom, Webex, BlueJeans, and GoToMeeting to Portal starting next month  —  Portals may soon get sold to enterprise customers in bulk.  —  Facebook is turning Portal into a Trojan horse for the enterprise: The smart display is getting native apps for Zoom …
More: ZDNet, CNBC, Wired, and Engadget
The Guardian:
Avaaz: sites spreading health misinfo had ~500M views on Facebook in April; top 10 such sites had almost four times the views of top 10 reputable health sites  —  Research findings undermine firm's claims it is cracking down on inaccurate news  —  Websites spreading misinformation …
New York Times:
Stocks of Apple, Amazon, Alphabet, Microsoft, and Facebook rose a combined 37% in the first seven months of 2020, while all the other S&P 500 stocks fell 6%  —  As the economy contracts and many companies struggle to survive, the biggest tech companies are amassing wealth and influence in ways unseen in decades.
Tim Wu / New York Times:
A ban on TikTok is overdue as the US confronts China's asymmetrical “net nationalism” and fights for the future of the open internet  —  Critics say we shouldn't abandon the ideal of an open internet.  But there is such a thing as being a sucker.
Jon Porter / The Verge:
Google Maps says it's rolling out more detailed maps with improved street designs for SF, NYC, and London, and with more accurate natural features worldwide  —  Making natural features easier to see and streets easier to navigate  —  Google Maps is being redesigned to make it easier …
Nick Romeo / New Yorker:
How Americans can draw upon European thinkers, like Dutch politician Marietje Schaake, to address issues of antitrust, Big Tech, and democratic governance  —  Last October, a couple of days before joining Stanford University as the international policy director at the Cyber Policy Center …
Steven T. Dennis / Bloomberg:
Senate Intelligence Committee concludes Putin ordered the 2016 hacking of Democratic Party accounts and the release of emails to harm Hillary Clinton's campaign  —  - Manafort described as a ‘grave counterintelligence threat’  — Report details plan to hurt Clinton, finds no Trump collusion
Kris Holt / Engadget:
Google updates its activity cards feature to provide more personalized results for recipes, jobs, and shopping  —  Google is making its activity cards feature — which helps you pick up where you left off in Search on mobile — more useful.  Let's say you're looking for iPad accessories.
Chance Miller / 9to5Mac:
Report: a look at the narrowing regulatory exemptions Apple has been operating under in China, such as running an App Store without a local partner  —  Amid continued tension between the United States and China, a new report from The Information details how Apple could be impacted by Chinese retaliation.
Issie Lapowsky / Protocol:
Profile of Color of Change, a civil rights group pushing Big Tech on issues of race has gone from 1.7M members in May to 8M today  —  It felt hot in Brandi Collins-Dexter's attic, but nerves may have had something to do with it.  —  It was late June, and she was sitting in front of her computer …
Cody Toombs / Android Police:
Android 11 to remove the camera picker, often seen in 3rd-party apps, defaulting instead to the built-in camera; Google says it's to protect privacy, security  —  Android may have started with the mantra that developers are allowed to do anything as long as they can code it …
Manish Singh / TechCrunch:
Google has expanded its Kormo Jobs app, first launched in Bangladesh in 2018 to help people find entry-level jobs, to India  —  Google said on Wednesday it has expanded its jobs app, called Kormo Jobs, to India as the Search giant looks to offer a helping hand to millions looking …
Lulu Yilun Chen / Bloomberg:
Chinese AI company SenseTime, blacklisted by Trump last year, saw its revenue surge 147% to $720M in 2019 and expects an 80% revenue growth in 2020  —  - World's largest AI startup SenseTime sees business boom  — SenseTime is said to expect 80% revenue growth this year
Matthew Handrahan /
Take-Two Interactive has agreed to acquire NYC-based mobile game developer Playdots for $192M in cash and stock; Playdots had raised $10M Series A in 2014  —  New York-based studio's entire team will join Take-Two in cash and stock deal  —  Take-Two Interactive has acquired the mobile developer Playdots in a deal worth $192 million.
India's antitrust watchdog has dismissed a case against WhatsApp, saying the company has not abused its dominant position to expand in the payments market  —  NEW DELHI (Reuters) - India's antitrust watchdog has dismissed a case against Facebook's WhatsApp, saying the company has not abused …
Debby Wu / Bloomberg:
Taiwan accused China-linked hackers of infiltrating Taiwanese companies that provide info services to government bodies, to steal citizens' personal data  —  - Groups likely backed by Beijing, cybersecurity official says  — Efforts to access systems have been ongoing for ‘long time’
More: Reuters

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