Techmeme
December 16, 2020, 3:55 PM

Top News

Bloomberg:
Facebook attacks Apple in full-page newspaper ads, claiming upcoming iOS 14 changes that limit data gathering and targeted ads are bad for small businesses  —  - Ads criticize Apple's plan to require opt-in for ad tracking  — Facebook placed ads in the NYT, WSJ and Washington Post
Jacob Kastrenakes / The Verge:
Substack launches Substack Reader, an RSS reader for tracking newsletter subscriptions and other feeds, in beta  —  Substack Reader is now available in beta  —  If you're worried about all your newsletter subscriptions getting lost in your inbox, Substack may have a solution.
Jacob Cohen Donnelly / A Media Operator:
Washington Post:
SolarWinds' top investors Silver Lake and Thoma Bravo sold a combined $286M worth of stock in the company on Dec. 7, six days before the hack was made public  —  The timing of the trades raises questions about whether major shareholders used inside information to avoid stark losses after the attack.
Alex Stamos / Washington Post:
Catalin Cimpanu / ZDNet:
Chaim Gartenberg / The Verge:
Google says its new Chromecast with Google TV will get an Apple TV app in early 2021, giving users access to TV+ originals and iTunes purchases  —  Coming in early 2021 to the Chromecast with Google TV  —  Google's latest Chromecast with Google TV is filling in one of its biggest missing apps …
Nick Statt / The Verge:
Google's Stadia arrives on iOS and iPadOS in beta for mobile web, letting users access their game library on Apple devices  —  Playing Cyberpunk 2077 on an iPad is pretty great  —  Google Stadia has finally made its way to iOS over a year after launch.  The company's mobile web beta …
Ashley Gold / Axios:
Texas AG says the state and other unspecified ones are filing a lawsuit against Google today, claiming Google illegally hurt competition in the ad tech market  —  Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton announced Wednesday that he's leading a lawsuit against Google, accusing the search giant …
Makena Kelly / The Verge:
Twitter says it will start removing tweets that spread harmful COVID-19 vaccine misinformation starting next week and will label conspiracies starting in 2021  —  It may apply labels early in 2021  —  Twitter announced Wednesday that it will remove tweets making false or misleading claims about COVID-19 vaccinations.
Ryan Mac / BuzzFeed News:
At an end-of-year, company-wide meeting, Facebook said it is working on TLDR, an AI tool that would summarize longform articles in bullet points  —  Facebook told employees on Tuesday that it's developing a tool to summarize news articles so users won't have to read them.
Manuel Vonau / Android Police:
Netflix is rolling out a Video Off button at the top of the full-screen video player and an audio only mode in settings for its Android app  —  Netflix might not be playing nicely with Google TV for some reason, but the company is pouring tons of resources into its Android app.
danah boyd / LinkedIn:
The Biden administration needs a VP of Engineering to debug problems that prevent government agencies from successfully building and deploying technical systems  —  If you look at the roster of the Biden-Harris transition team, it's quickly apparent that the incoming administration is tech-forward.
Chris Welch / The Verge:
Apple AirPods Max review: high-luxury design, terrific sound quality, and very effective noise cancellation, but they are heavy and the case is an abomination  —  Apple's over-ear headphones have tremendous build quality and sound, but there's no denying they're expensive
CoinDesk:
Bitcoin crosses $20K to reach an all-time high after doubling in the past three months  —  After testing investor patience for three weeks, bitcoin has finally crossed above $20,000 to reach fresh all-time highs.  —  The number one cryptocurrency by market value jumped …
The Guardian:
Invoices show Israeli surveillance firm Rayzone leased access to SS7 traffic from a Channel Islands mobile operator to spy on cell communications and locations  —  Crofton Black, Stephanie Kirchgaessner and Dan Sabbagh  —  The Israeli private intelligence company Rayzone Group appears …
Sarah Perez / TechCrunch:
Coalition for App Fairness says Digital Content Next, representing NYT, NPR, WaPo, and others, has joined; the coalition calls for the regulation of app stores  —  A group of major U.S. news publishers have joined the Coalition for App Fairness (CAF), the advocacy group pushing …
Adrienne LaFrance / The Atlantic:
A pessimistic look at Facebook and its enormous, uncontrollable impact on the US and world, giving Zuckerberg incredible power with little oversight  —  The doomsday machine was never supposed to exist.  It was meant to be a thought experiment that went like this: Imagine a device built …
Hirsh Chitkara / Protocol:
Interview with Stanford comp lit professor Adrian Daub on the naiveté of undergrads eager to work in tech, “useless” VC Twitter, and challenges to SV narratives  —  In the early 2010s, professor Adrian Daub began noticing changes in some Stanford undergraduates that troubled him.
Caitlin McCabe / Wall Street Journal:
Leaked doc: Massachusetts securities regulators are expected to file a complaint against Robinhood claiming it exposed investors to “unnecessary trading risks”  —  The wildly popular trading platform exposed Massachusetts investors to ‘unnecessary trading risks,’ according to the complaint
Greg Kumparak / TechCrunch:
Discord says iOS and Android users will now be able to share their screens  —  The super popular chat app Discord is getting a much-requested feature starting today: mobile screen sharing.  —  As the name suggests, mobile screen sharing lets users capture and broadcast everything …
William Boston / Wall Street Journal:
Germany says it will permit the use of Huawei's 5G tech after receiving assurances from the company about its safety, pending parliamentary approval  —  New network-security legislation is latest rebuke to U.S. effort to rein in Chinese tech giant  —  BERLIN—The German government …
Natasha Lomas / TechCrunch:
Australian regulator sues Facebook for allegedly using its Onavo VPN app to spy on users for commercial purposes in 2016 and 2017  —  Yet more trouble brewing for Facebook: Australia's Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) is suing the tech giant over its use, in 2016 and 2017 …

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