A NEW commodity spawns a lucrative, fast-growing industry, prompting antitrust regulators to step in to restrain those who control its flow. A century ago, the resource in question was oil. Now similar concerns are being raised by the giants that deal in data, the oil of the digital era. These titans—Alphabet (Google’s parent company), Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Microsoft—look unstoppable. They are the five most valuable listed firms in the world. Their profits are surging: they collectively racked up over $25bn in net profit in the first quarter of 2017. Amazon captures half of all dollars spent online in America. Google and Facebook accounted for almost all the revenue growth in digital advertising in America last year.
Continue reading The world’s most valuable resource is no longer oil, but data
An ex-Google employee has claimed that the Alphabet-owned company and other tech giants, such as Facebook and Snapchat, are purposely designing gadgets and apps with psychological elements similar to that of casino slot machines.
According to former Google “Design Ethicist” Tristan Harris, many of the elite Silicon Valley companies are long-established gambling design techniques such as offering visual reward loops and encouraging ‘winning streaks’ to hook smartphone or tablet users into a constant cycle of checking and engaging with their devices and software.
Continue reading Is social media hacking your brain? How Facebook and Snapchat are purposely keeping us addicted
WWE “Total Divas” star Paige issued an official statement on Twitter Monday after her sex tape and nude photos were leaked in a massive hack March 15, which was dubbed the Fappening 2.0. After a short tweet two days after her photos and video leaked, Paige elaborated on the stolen images.
Paige, 24, said she contemplated “physically harming” herself when her private property was stolen. She credited her family, and soon-to-be husband, Alberto Del Rio, with helping her get through the incident.
Continue reading WWE Diva Paige Almost Harmed Herself After Sex Tape And Naked Photos Leaked In Fappening 2.0
WikiLeaks has sparked a debate about cybersecurity by publishing secret CIA documents. In a DW interview, its founder, Julian Assange, said he will publish more information – and he was critical of US tech companies.
There are no less than 16 different intelligence agencies in the United States. In 2017, they will cost US taxpayers some $70 billion (65 billion euros) – roughly twice Germany’s overall annual defense budget. The actual distribution of that sum among US intelligence services is classified, but revelations brought to light by Edward Snowden in 2013 suggest that the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) receives the lion’s share.
In 2013, that sum was around $15 billion. Now the CIA, a highly funded agency tasked with gleaning state secrets from other countries, has a problem keeping its own secrets: On March 7, the whistleblower platform WikiLeaks began publishing CIA documents under the name “Vault 7.”
Continue reading Assange: ‘Only 1 percent’ of the CIA material has been published
Swarms of protesters took to the streets of Budapest, Hungary, on Tuesday night, waving their smartphones in the air to demonstrate against a planned tax on Internet use. The protest, which was the second in about a week, was largely organized through a Facebook page.