A friend tweeted from Ireland (in time for St. Patrick's Day), blaming President Trump for the major decline in the value of stocks. This same friend credited Barack Obama's economic policies when the Dow Jones Industrial Averages approached 30,000. This -- and more -- is part of our political, economic and medical divide with mixed messages coming from supposed professionals, amateurs and people who don't know what they are talking about.
A project launched by Vox Media, the parent company of the outlet (Vox) that gave us Carlos Maza and a constant stream of loony leftism, is now being backed by Google. The Google News Initiative program will invest an estimated sum upward of $1 million to the “Concert Local” project. This investment is said to be “one of the largest single-publisher investments that Google is making of this kind."
Prominent liberal Google critic Dr. Robert Epstein wrote an op-ed warning that Big Tech companies can rig the 2020 election and “make the Russians look like rank amateurs.” “President Donald Trump can’t win the 2020 election,” wrote Dr. Robert Epstein, a senior researcher at the American Institute for Behavioral Research and Technology and former Editor-in-chief of “Psychology Today.” In a Feb. 24 op-ed “Why Republicans Can’t Win in 2020,” he observed that Big Tech companies “can shift opinions and votes in numerous ways that people can’t detect” and shared intercepted emails and studies to prove it. His solution: “monitor them aggressively."
Google in collaboration with Jigsaw is developing tools to measure subjective content online and rate it on a value scale. And scientists are taking it seriously. A study done by eight academics from various universities together in the iDrama Lab, found that online communities, particularly in the “Manosphere,” have “been orchestrating harassment campaigns and spreading extremist ideologies on the Web.”
A trillion-dollar company could be in trouble for copyright infringement, according to a lawsuit from tech company Oracle. Oracle, a technology company known for its database management systems, has been embroiled in a legal battle with Google since 2010. The company, which recently made headlines for a fundraiser held by founder and chairman Larry Ellison for President Donald Trump, maintains in a blog post that Google “copied verbatim 11,000 lines of Java code and then broke Java’s interoperability.”
Google has bought its way into health care through fitness tracking. Is the European Union (E.U.) right to call foul? Both U.S. and E.U. regulators are wary of Google’s $2.1 billion purchase of fitness tracking company Fitbit last November. The New York Post announced that the Department of Justice would be looking into the acquisition last December, and the E.U.’s European Data Protection Board (E.D.B.P.) cited that this purchase by an already powerful company “could entail a high level of risk to privacy and data protection.”
An automated service will no longer label people as male or female, according to a report from Business Insider. Google’s Cloud Vision API, a “computer vision” product that has the ability to “[a]ssign labels to images and quickly classify them into millions of predefined categories,” might be making some changes to two specific labels.
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) might not be strong enough to take on Big Tech anymore, says Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MI). In a Feb. 10 proposal, the senator, who has made a name for himself pursuing the investigation of Big Tech companies like Google and Facebook, stated that Congress needed “to overhaul the FTC and bring it into the 21st century.”
Leading journalists and editors around the world have some advice for social media companies: there needs to be more censorship. In a 2020 report released by the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism, 233 people from 32 countries, including the United States, complained about misinformation in tech and where it stands in relation to journalism.
The 2020 election is going to be fought online and the left has decided to create its own fact-check unit. The Democratic National Committee started a “counter-disinformation unit” to “serve as a knowledge base and intelligence unit” for the party.
After taking a stand for free speech on several occasions, is Facebook now backsliding? Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg decided to take a pro-free speech stand and allowed political ads without fact-checking as early as October 2019, and amidst pressure from the left, the Big Tech CEO has even doubled down on his pro-free speech remarks. But according to sources speaking to The Washington Post, “Facebook has weighed whether to label political ads to indicate they have not been fact-checked, rather than vetting what candidates say, one of a series of proposals the company has floated” leading up to the 2020 election.
Dave Rubin has launched two platforms on the same day, which he believes could solve the free speech and censorship problem online. In a Dec. 4 livestream, the host of the Rubin Report Dave Rubin described two platforms he created, Locals.com and the Rubin Report app, which have gone public today. Rubin said that he created the platforms to help solve the “massive problems with Big Tech” that we all know exist, including things like deplatforming, algorithmic suppression and shadow banning. Locals.com, he said, will be where creators, as long as they are not engaging in illegal activity, will be able to establish online communities and be fundraised by their fans. “You’re going to set your rules, whatever rules you want for your community,” he said.