It’s been 24 years since Internet companies were declared off-the-hook for the behavior of their users. That may change, and soon.
(Cross posted from Signal360)
In a sweeping talk at the Association of National Advertisers conference last month, P&G Chief Brand Officer (and ANA Chair) Marc Pritchard laid out a five-step plan to address systemic problems in the marketing and media industries. Each step addresses serious challenges and opportunities — in diversity, inequality, and creative and business practices. But perhaps no step is more challenging — and crucial — than Pritchard’s Step Four: Eliminating all harmful content online.
“There is still too much harmful, hateful, denigrating, and discriminatory content and commentary in too many digital sites, channels, and feeds,” Pritchard said. “There is no place for this type of content.”
While nearly everyone agrees with the idea of eliminating harmful content, key actors across the digital media industry seem paralyzed when it comes to how best to take action on the problem. What’s really going on? To understand, we must dive into the early formation of the Internet industry in the United States, and the role the First Amendment plays — to this day — in shaping an increasingly contentious debate on how to regulate digital speech.
But, First, a Bit of History
When the Internet was in its early stages as a commercial medium more than 25 years ago, a moral panic erupted in the United States following the publication of a Time magazine cover story Titled “Cyberporn” and featuring a terrified child staring aghast into the blue light of a computer monitor, the story claimed — falsely, as it turned out — that the majority of images on the then-novel medium consisted of pornography.
Internet service providers were to be treated like the phone company … not held responsible for the speech of their customers.
Congress quickly took up the cause of cleaning up the Internet and passed the
By Douglas Busvine
BERLIN (Reuters) – The customers of software group SAP <SAPG.DE> are suffering severe declines in revenue and earnings while at the same time facing intensifying pressure to hike IT spending to go digital, a survey showed on Monday.
The poll of SAP’s German-speaking user community found that nearly three-quarters were experiencing sharp drops in revenue. At the same time, over four-fifths said the coronavirus pandemic made digital transformation a more pressing task.
“At the centre of this crisis is the need for businesses to do more with less,” said Marco Lenck, chairman of the German-speaking DSAG user group that commissioned the survey.
The DSAG, which represents 3,700 businesses, is an influential lobby that has called on SAP to make it easier to upgrade systems traditionally hosted on site to run in remote datacentres.
Such cloud hosting makes it easier for firms to scale up or pare back their business process operations in line with need. But the initial cost and difficulty of making that move deters many.
SAP’s new CEO, Christian Klein, welcomed the DSAG survey’s findings, which he said were representative of how the group’s global business was performing.
Klein told a joint briefing with the DSAG that SAP had taken on board calls to improve integration between its four main processes: sales, procurement, human resources and supply chain management.
Work on creating a common data model, user interface and consistent security and identity management in these four areas was now 57% complete, he said. By the end of the year, 90% of the job will be done.
Klein also said that, given the cost pressures that some clients were facing, for example in the airlines sector, SAP was offering flexible payment terms to help ride out the economic slump.
“We expect the transformation in the
- A web browser called Tuber, backed by Qihoo 360, allowed Chinese users to access foreign websites such as YouTube and Facebook.
- Google, Facebook and Twitter are all blocked in China due to the country’s Great Firewall. They can usually only be accessed via virtual private networks or VPNs.
- The Tuber browser has now disappeared from app stores and its website no longer works.
GUANGZHOU, China — An app that briefly gave Chinese internet users access to foreign websites such as YouTube and Facebook — services that have long been blocked — has now disappeared.
The web browser called Tuber was backed by Qihoo 360, a Chinese cybersecurity giant. On Oct. 9, a journalist at the state-backed tabloid the Global Times
about its launch.
China’s so-called Great Firewall blocks websites such as Facebook and its services like Instagram as well as Google and Twitter. Content on Chinese websites is also heavily censored, particularly if it is deemed politically sensitive by Beijing.
A virtual private network or VPN is required to access any blocked sites in China. But the Tuber app allowed users to access these services without a VPN.
There were some caveats to the Tuber app however. Users had to register with their identity card information and phone number, according to Reuters and TechCrunch, which both tested the app.
Search results on YouTube for politically sensitive phrases such as “Tiananmen” and “Xi Jinping” returned no results on the Tuber app, according to TechCrunch.
The Tuber app was available on the Huawei app store but was no longer there when CNBC checked
Apple is giving some of its TV+ subscribers a few extra months of its streaming service free of charge. The company has been offering free one-year subscriptions to the service with the purchase of new devices since TV+ launched last November. But now that those early users are set to reach the end of their initial free trial, Apple says it will add on as much as an extra three months.
Importantly, Apple isn’t offering this deal to everyone, and exactly how much extra time gets added to your subscription will depend on when you signed up. Anyone who got the free trial prior to January 31, 2020, will have their subscriptions extended until February 2021. So if you first signed up in November, you’ll get an extra three months, but if you signed up in January you’ll only get one additional month.
The same deal also applies to people who paid for monthly or yearly subscriptions to TV+ before January 31, 2020. Those subscribers will have credits automatically applied to their accounts that extend their current subscriptions until February 2021. (Apple will email subscribers with exact details and dates ahead of time.)
According to TechCrunch, Apple says the extension is because the company “knows everyone is still looking at a tough winter ahead filled with COVID-related restrictions.” Though TechCrunch also points out that the extension could help pad out Apple’s subscriber numbers for another quarter. Whatever the motivation, though, it will be good news for anyone hoping to hang onto their free trial a little longer.
The Three mobile network went down on Wednesday, leaving thousands of customers unable to get online or make phone calls for up to two hours.
First reports of a fault with the network were submitted to the DownDetector website at about 08:30 BST, with a flood of complaints coming in by 09:15 BST.
The service had been restored by about 11:00 BST, with Three apologising to customers ‘for any inconvenience caused by the issue’.
Three didn’t give any details of what caused the outage but said about 10 per cent of customers had data issues and 19 per cent had issues with dropped calls.
The company claims the outage only lasted for 45 minutes, but some customers were still experiencing issues more than two hours after it first started.
The outage came as the government encourages people to return to working from home if they can, after a dramatic spike in coronavirus infections.
Users from across the country took to Twitter to express concern over the lack of connection, with many tweeting Three Support to ask about the outage.
Tom Penny tweeted: ‘No service in Leicestershire here for me or my wife, or Derby according to Twitter. Smells of a national outage but Three have not recognised any issues.’
Oliver Brett tweeted: ‘Vast swathes of north London with ZERO network coverage from @ThreeUK – absolute disgraceful when people are forced to work from home. Will be claiming for lost income and