The Morning After: Jack Dorsey is stepping down as Twitter CEO, again

The Morning After: Jack Dorsey is stepping down as Twitter CEO, again


Big tech news normally slows as the year winds down, but Jack Dorsey isn’t letting that happen. The Twitter CEO has resigned from the company, with CTO Parag Agrawal replacing him as chief executive.

“I’ve decided to leave Twitter because I believe the company is ready to move on from its founders,” Dorsey said in a statement.

Over the last six years, Dorsey has run two major tech companies: Twitter and Square. His first stint as CEO of Twitter, which he co-founded, ended in 2008 when he was pushed out. He returned as CEO in 2015 when Dick Costolo departed.

With Agrava at the helm, will Twitter go in a different direction? Will it chase more money-making ventures? (Advertising remains its best way of making money, but there are newsletter projects and premium membership options happening in the background — and there’s also that newly created crypto division. 

But for many Twitter users, the hope is the company will get a better handle on the trolls, disinformation spreaders and bullies. That might be harder to achieve than interest in a Twitter Blue subscription. 

— Mat Smith

It’s an all-time low price.

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Engadget

So there were some bargains waiting for Cyber Monday to strike. and have discounted the base 14-inch model by $200. That’s a 10 percent discount off its usual $1,999 starting price. Amazon discounted both the 14- and 16-inch variants by $50 the week they came out. But $200 off is an all-time low — already — for a computer that only went on sale at the . Alas, only the Space Grey option of this is on sale, however.

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The rest of the best Cyber Monday deals

It plans to develop 23 new electrified cars by 2030.

Nissan will invest trillions of yen over the next five years developing new EVs and battery technology as part of a grand plan it calls Ambition 2030.

This will include 23 electrified vehicles over the next eight years, with 20 of those in the next five years alone. It’s aiming for a market mix of 75 percent electrified (EV and e-Power PHEV/hybrids) in Europe, 55 percent in Japan and 40 percent in the US and China by 2030.

This could even include EVs with all-solid-state batteries (ASSB) by 2028, with a pilot plant in Yokohama primed to start manufacturing as early as 2024. ASSBs promise benefits like reduced charging times and improved stability.

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It would be the first Competition and Markets Authority reversal of a major tech acquisition.

According to the Financial Times, the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) is expected to reverse Facebook parent company Meta’s purchase of Giphy. If so, it would mark the first time that the country’s competition regulator has unwound a major tech acquisition.

Meta (or Facebook, at the time) announced in May 2020 that it bought the GIF platform with the goal of rolling it into Instagram. Reports pegged the price of the deal at $400 million.

The CMA raised concerns about the acquisition, however. It opened an investigation into the deal the following month. The regulator ruled in August that the deal could prevent rivals such as TikTok and Snapchat from accessing Giphy’s library of GIFs. It also said the deal could remove a potential competitor to Meta in the UK advertising sector.

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The update is now ‘on track’ for early 2022.

The Morning After

CDPR

CD Projekt Red is “on track” to release the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X/S versions of Cyberpunk 2077 in the first quarter of 2022, the studio’s parent company announced on Monday. CDPR had initially planned to release the update in late 2021.

The company also confirmed anyone who purchased the game on either PlayStation 4 or Xbox One will receive the next-gen update for free. Pro tip: If you don’t already have Cyberpunk 2077, you can buy it while it’s currently 50 percent off on the and stores. You’ll then have the next-gen version in your back pocket when it eventually launches.

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UK competition regulator orders Meta to sell Giphy

UK competition regulator orders Meta to sell Giphy


As rumored, the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has ordered Meta (Facebook) to sell Giphy, saying the deal “could harm social media users and UK advertisers.” It found that the deal would boost Meta’s already prodigious market power by limiting other platforms’ access to Giphy GIFs, “driving more traffic to Facebook owned sites — Facebook, WhatsApp and Instagram.” 

The CMA said that Meta’s sites dominated social media user time to the tune of 73 percent and that it could further muscle out rivals like TikTok, Twitter and Snapchat by leveraging Giphy. It added that prior to the merger, Giphy launched “innovative advertising services” used by brands like Dunkin’ Donuts and Pepsi that it could have brought to the UK. 

“Facebook terminated Giphy’s advertising services at the time of the merger, removing an important source of potential competition,” the regulator wrote. “The CMA considers this particularly concerning given that Facebook controls nearly half of the £7 billion display advertising market in the UK.”

We disagree with this decision. We are reviewing the decision and considering all options, including appeal.

Facebook purchased Giphy in May of 2020, reportedly for $400 million, with the aim of integrating it into Instagram. A month later, the CMA launched an investigation into the deal and ruled in August that Facebook could stop rivals like TikTok and Snapchat from accessing Giphy’s GIF library. At the same time, it said the deal could remove potential UK display advertising competitors after Meta ended Giphy’s paid ad partnerships. 

Meta previously said that the CMA had no jurisdiction because Giphy has no operations in the UK, adding that Giphy’s paid services weren’t display advertising by the CMA’s definition. In October, the authority fined Meta $70 million for breaking rules related to the deal by refusing to report required information and changing its chief compliance officer twice without permission. 

The CMA said that after consulting with interested businesses and organizations, it “has concluded that its competition concerns can only be addressed by Facebook selling Giphy in its entirety to an approved buyer.” It’s not clear how this would be done, however.  

“We disagree with this decision. We are reviewing the decision and considering all options, including appeal. Both consumers and Giphy are better off with the support of our infrastructure, talent, and resource,” a Meta spokesperson told Engadget in a statement. “Together, Meta and Giphy would enhance Giphy’s product for the millions of people, businesses, developers and API partners in the UK and around the world who use Giphy every day, providing more choices for everyone.”

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Clearview AI fined £17 million for breaching UK data protection laws

Clearview AI fined £17 million for breaching UK data protection laws


The UK’s Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has provisionally fined the facial recognition company Clearview AI £17 million ($22.6 million) for breaching UK data protection laws. It said that Clearview allegedly failed to inform citizens that it was collecting billions of their photos, among other transgressions. It has also (again, provisionally) ordered it to stop further processing of residents’ personal data.

The regulator said that Clearview apparently failed to process people’s data “in a way that they likely expect or that is fair.” It also alleged that the company failed to have a lawful reason to collect the data, didn’t meet GDPR standards for biometric data, failed to have a process that prevents data from being retained indefinitely and failed to inform UK residents what was happening to their data.

The ICO noted that Clearview’s services were used on a free trial basis by a number of UK law enforcement agencies, “but that this trial was discontinued and Clearview AI Inc’s services are no longer being offered in the UK.”

The images in Clearview AI Inc’s database are likely to include the data of a substantial number of people from the UK and may have been gathered without people’s knowledge from publicly available information online, including social media platforms.

The UK and Australia opened up a joint investigation of Clearview AI last year. Regulators were concerned with Clearview’s practice of scraping data and gathering photos from social media site like Facebook. It sells that data to law enforcement agencies, purportedly allowing them to identify criminals or victims. However, the company’s business practices have raised numerous privacy concerns

Clearview AI said it was considering an appeal, according to The New York Times. “[Clearview only] provides publicly available information from the internet to law enforcement agencies,” said company lawyer Kelly Hagedorn in a statement. “My company and I have acted in the best interests of the UK and their people by assisting law enforcement in solving heinous crimes against children, seniors and other victims of unscrupulous acts,” added Clearview AI chief executive Hoan Ton-That in a separate statement.

Earlier this month, Australia’s regular issued a similar ruling, saying Clearview AI breached the privacy of residents by scraping their biometric information. The country’s regulator, the OAIC, ordered Clearview to “cease collecting facial images and biometric templates from individuals in Australia and destroy all facial images and biometric templates collected.”  

In the US, the ACLU recently sued Clearview for violating Illinois state laws. Twitter, Google and YouTube have all sent cease-and-desist letters to the company, alleging that it violates their terms of service. Facebook has also demanded that Clearview stop scraping its data. 

The fine would be the first Clearview has faced, the company told the NYT. It can still contest the ruling with the Commissioner, so the fine and enforcement “may be subject to change,” the ICO wrote. The ICO expects to make a final decision by mid-2022.

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