Today in Big Tech — November 24, 2020

A lot of what dominates Big Tech nowadays isn’t strictly about technology but rather what it should or shouldn’t enable. That’s partly because technology has become so pervasive and partly because Big Tech stifles innovation.

Facebook Researchers Found Its ‘Political Whitelist’ Influenced Misinformation Spread by Alex Heath

“Since 2018, Facebook had maintained a ‘political whitelist’ of about 112,000 accounts belonging to government officials and candidates whose posts couldn’t be fact checked, a process that can trigger penalties for posts found to contain misinformation, such as reduced reach, according to the presentation. The employees, led by a trio of researchers on Facebook’s team charged with overseeing its role in civic discourse, wanted the list dissolved.”

This is a pattern with Facebook. The company screws something up. Then it does the research to find out what it screwed up. And then it ignores its own research.

YouTube temporarily suspends, demonetizes OANN by Ashley Gold

“YouTube has been criticized for allowing OANN to spread misinformation using its platform, particularly around coronavirus and the election. This marks the Google-owned service’s first crackdown against OANN.”

Three strikes and you’re out? Nah. OANN has had way more than three strikes. YouTube simply chose to notice this particular one.

Warning: Banned Baidu Apps Exposed ‘Sensitive’ Data On Up To 1.4 Billion Android Phones by Thomas Brewster

“The apps have as many as 6 million users in the U.S. alone and an estimated 1.4 billion downloads globally. Researchers at Palo Alto Networks’ Unit42 claimed they were leaking data from phones that could’ve left anyone who downloaded the apps open to persistent surveillance.”

Google kicked both apps out of the Google Play store last month. Baidu App is back after an update but Baidu Maps isn’t. I wonder who is holding it up — Google or Baidu?

Apple MacBook Pro 13” M1 Review- Why You Might Want To Pass by Patrick Moorhead

“So far, I have experienced application crashes in Microsoft Edge, Outlook, WinZip and Logitech Camera Control. I got installation errors with Adobe Reader XI, Adobe Acrobat Reader DC, a Samsung SSD backup application, and Xbox 360 Controller for Mac.”

No surprises here. Never buy the first generation if you can avoid it. Apple may have not redesigned these Macs, but you should consider anything with an M1 as a first-generation product.

Twitter to relaunch account verifications in early 2021, asks for feedback on policy by Sarah Perez

“Twitter’s verification system, which provides a blue checkmark to designate accounts belonging to public figures, was paused in 2017 as the company tried to address confusion over what it meant to be verified.”

Twitter has yet to address that confusion.

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Executive Editor @VentureBeat Formerly @TheNextWeb @ZDNet @CNET @TechSpot @ArsTechnica

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Emil Protalinski

Emil Protalinski

Executive Editor @VentureBeat Formerly @TheNextWeb @ZDNet @CNET @TechSpot @ArsTechnica

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