Techmeme
September 22, 2022, 11:55 AM

Top News

Chris Welch / The Verge:
Apple AirPods Pro (second-gen) review: improved ANC, sound quality, and clarity, but same old design, a Lightning connector, and no major new software features  —  Redesigned inside but not out, the new AirPods Pro are destined to be another hit — even if the magic is waning
Max Chafkin / Bloomberg:
A look at the quiet success of AirPods, of which Apple sold an estimated ~120M pairs in 2021, showing how big a business its upcoming niche VR headset could be  —  Sometime next year, Tim Cook will appear before the Apple Inc. faithful and unveil the company's next major computing platform …
Gina Chon / Semafor Media:
Nick Clegg says Meta could lift its ban on Donald Trump's Facebook and Instagram accounts in January 2023, when his suspension expires, after consulting experts  —  Semafor launches this fall, but we wanted to get this news right out to you.  Sign up for Semafor Technology for regular coverage …
New York Times:
An investigation based on nearly 160K Roskomnadzor documents details Russia's expansive surveillance and censorship apparatus, which helps Putin maintain power  —  Four days into the war in Ukraine, Russia's expansive surveillance and censorship apparatus was already hard at work.
Steve Dent / Engadget:
Google unveils Chromecast with Google TV (HD), featuring a remote control and supporting only 1080p content with HDR, for $30; the 4K version costs $50  —  Confirming rumors, Google has unveiled the Chromecast with Google TV (HD) device that offers features from the $50 4K model at a significantly cheaper $30 price.
Ryan Browne / CNBC:
UK media regulator Ofcom plans to investigate the cloud computing, personal messaging, and smart device markets over the next year due to competition concerns  —  - Ofcom, the U.K. media watchdog, is set to launch a study examining the role of Amazon, Microsoft and Google in the cloud services market.
Russell Brandom / The Verge:
Instagram, and now TikTok, have fallen afoul of the “Bootleg Ratio”, as clout-chasing accounts overtake content created by users specifically for each platform  —  TikTok is changing. … That stuff is still on the platform, but it's largely fallen off my For You page …
Matthew Boyle / Bloomberg:
Disney, P&G, LVMH, and other large companies have hired chief metaverse officers, seeking to capitalize on Web3, but questions remain about their usefulness  —  Advertising giant Publicis Groupe SA introduced the newest member of its C-suite at a technology conference in Paris this year.
Newley Purnell / Wall Street Journal:
Swiss company Proton VPN becomes the latest to leave India over invasive new rules requiring customer data collection, following Surfshark, Nord, and others  —  Swiss service is latest to pull servers over requirement that companies must save user data and disclose to authorities on demand
Sheena Vasani / The Verge:
Instagram is working on a feature to protect users from receiving unsolicited nude photos in their DMs; Meta says the tech won't let the company view the photos  —  Instagram is working on a way to protect users from receiving unsolicited nude photos in their DMs.
Dave Michaels / Wall Street Journal:
The FTC says Jeff Bezos and Andy Jassy cannot avoid testifying in an ongoing investigation into Prime membership, after Amazon pushed back against the probe  —  Commissioners deny company's request to quash subpoenas and pare back investigation  —  Amazon vs. Walmart: How the Giants Look to Each Other to Best Each Other
Melissa Heikkilä / MIT Technology Review:
Alphabet's DeepMind unveils Sparrow, an AI chatbot that learns from human feedback and searches Google for information to support its claims  —  The lab trained a chatbot to learn from human feedback and search the internet for information to support its claims.
Gregory Zuckerman / Wall Street Journal:
Sources: seeking to increase profits, Coinbase hired Wall Street traders and explored using its own cash to trade crypto in 2021, including a $100M transaction  —  The company completed a $100 million transaction before ending the effort.  It says that it hasn't engaged in proprietary trading.
Yogita Khatri / The Block:
Immunefi, which helps crypto services create bug bounty programs, raised a $24M Series A led by Framework Ventures  —  - Immunefi has raised $24 million in Series A funding led by Framework Ventures.  — The startup hosts bug bounty programs by crypto projects and earns a 10% commission on bounty payouts.
Sergiu Gatlan / BleepingComputer:
Take-Two Interactive's 2K, the publisher of Bioshock, Xcom, and popular sports games, says a hacker accessed its help desk and sent customers links to malware  —  American video game publisher 2K has confirmed that its help desk platform was hacked and used to target customers …
Bloomberg:
Satya Nadella says he's confident that Microsoft can gain approval for its $69B Activision Blizzard purchase, citing several recent acquisitions by Sony  —  Microsoft Corp. Chief Executive Officer Satya Nadella said he's confident the company can gain regulatory approval for its $69 billion purchase …
Sam Biddle / The Intercept:
Meta-commissioned report from BSR details censorship and allegations of “unintentional bias” against Palestinians during violence by Israeli forces in May 2021  —  Facebook and Instagram's speech policies harmed fundamental human rights of Palestinian users during a conflagration …
Ionut Ilascu / BleepingComputer:
A Python directory traversal vulnerability disclosed in August 2007, but never patched, likely affects 350K+ open-source projects and can lead to code execution  —  A vulnerability in the Python programming language that has been overlooked for 15 years is now back in the spotlight …
Moneycontrol:
WhatsApp confirms Manesh Mahatme, who led its Indian payments business, has stepped down after 18 months; a source says Mahatme plans to rejoin Amazon  —  Mahatme's resignation comes at a time when WhatsApp's mobile payments business has failed to take off in a significant fashion in India
More: Inc42 Media and ReutersThanks:@tsuvik
Jef Feeley / Bloomberg:
Delaware Chancery judge rules that Elon Musk can amend his counterclaims and use Twitter's $7.8M severance payment to Peiter Zatko to justify ending the deal  —  Elon Musk can use a $7.8 million severance payment to a Twitter Inc. whistle-blower to argue he was justified in walking away …

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Esteban L. Hernandez / Axios:
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Ashley Capoot / CNBC:
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