Sunday, 4 June 2017

May's statement on the London Bridge terror attack

READ Theresa May's FULL statement on the London Bridge terror attack | PoliticsHome.com: "Second we cannot allow this ideology the safe space it needs to breed. Yet that is precisely what the internet and the big companies that provide internet-based services provide. We need to work with allied democratic governments to reach international agreements that regulate cyberspace to prevent the spread of extremist and terrorism planning and we need to do everything we can at home to reduce the risk of extremism online." 'via Blog this'

Wednesday, 19 April 2017

Facebook and the Cost of Monopoly – Stratechery by Ben Thompson

Facebook and the Cost of Monopoly – Stratechery by Ben Thompson: "The problem is that Facebook isn’t simply a social network: the service is a three-sided market — users, content providers, and advertisers — and while the basis of Facebook’s dominance is in the network effects that come from connecting all of those users, said dominance has seeped to those other sides.

 Content providers are an obvious example: Facebook passed Google as the top traffic driver back in 2015, and as of last fall drove over 40% of traffic for the average site, even after an algorithm change that reduced publisher reach.

So is that a monopoly when it comes to the content provider market? I would argue yes, thanks to the monopoly framework above.

 Note that once again we are in a situation where there is not a clear price: no content provider pays Facebook to post a link (although they can obviously make said link into an advertisement). However, Facebook does, at least indirectly, make money from that content: the more users find said content engaging, the more time they will spend on Facebook, which means the more ads they will see." 'via Blog this'

Thursday, 12 January 2017

UK fails to gag press over ID of ex-spy at centre of Trump dossier claims

UK fails to gag press over ID of ex-spy at centre of Trump dossier claims | Ars Technica UK: "The D-notice first came into play in 1912, two years before World War I broke out, when Whitehall mandarins decided that an organisation should be created that addressed matters of national interest. Members of the press were included on the advisory panel, and they remain so to do this day.

However, the makeup has changed a little: the likes of Google representatives have sat on the committee, for example. Though, the US ad giant withdrew its voluntary support in light of Edward Snowden's damning disclosures about the NSA.

Historically, publishers and editors have largely responded in kind to the frightfully polite requests from the MoD. Members of the committee have long argued that it doesn't amount to censorship from the British government, instead insisting that they are simply exercising restraint with stories that may, on reflection, damage national security. But Vallance and his predecessors can only gently nudge the press to consider the sensitive material they have in their possession before publishing it." 'via Blog this'

Wednesday, 16 November 2016

Mark Zuckerberg Is in Denial - New York Times

Mark Zuckerberg Is in Denial - The New York Times: "Only Facebook has the data that can exactly reveal how fake news, hoaxes and misinformation spread, how much there is of it, who creates and who reads it, and how much influence it may have. Unfortunately, Facebook exercises complete control over access to this data by independent researchers.

It’s as if tobacco companies controlled access to all medical and hospital records.

 These are not easy problems to solve, but there is a lot Facebook could do. When the company decided it wanted to reduce spam, it established a policy that limited its spread. If Facebook had the same kind of zeal about fake news, it could minimize its spread, too.

If anything, Facebook has been moving in the wrong direction.

It recently fired its (already too few) editors responsible for weeding out fake news from its trending topics section. Unsurprisingly, the section was then flooded with even more spurious articles." 'via Blog this'

Thursday, 16 June 2016

Monday, 13 June 2016

Evaluating the privacy properties of telephone metadata

Evaluating the privacy properties of telephone metadata: "Evaluating the privacy properties of telephone metadata
Jonathan Mayera,b,1, Patrick Mutchlera, and John C. Mitchella
Author Affiliations

Edited by Cynthia Dwork, Microsoft Research Silicon Valley, Mountain View, CA, and approved March 1, 2016 (received for review April 27, 2015): Transactional information is remarkably revelatory

Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 2016 113 (20) 5467-5469'via Blog this'

After Snowden, there is clear evidence of a paradigmatic shift in journalist-source relations

After Snowden, there is clear evidence of a paradigmatic shift in journalist-source relations | Comments from media industry experts: "No oversight agency revealed the MI5-MI6 rift over rendition. The Parliament’s Intelligence and Security Committee (ISC) is the main intelligence oversight body, yet in its report from February 2013, immediately before Snowden, there was no mention of GCHQ exponential move to collect data in bulk.

 It was Snowden’s leaks that revealed GCHQ has the potential for mass surveillance. Oversight bodies are reactive and, as the leading US intelligence academic Loch K Johnson observed, over time, they tend to go native with their charges." 'via Blog this'