How algorithms are pushing the tech giants into the danger zone

The algorithms Facebook and other tech companies use to boost engagement – and increase profits – have led to spectacular failures of sensitivity and worse. How can we fight back?

Earlier this month, Facebook announced a new pilot programme in Australia aimed at stopping “revenge porn” – the non-consensual sharing of nude or otherwise explicit photos – on its platform. Their answer? Just send Facebook your nudes.

Continue reading… …read more

Germany bans children’s ‘smart’ watches over surveillance concerns

Telecoms regulator urges parents to destroy the devices, which have been used to listen in on classroom lessons

Germany’s telecoms regulator has banned ​the sale of “smart watches” that can be used by parents to check on their children, saying the devices violated Germany’s strict surveillance laws.

The Federal Network Agency said it had already taken action against several firms that sell the watches online but did not name them.

Continue reading… …read more

Microsoft’s latest Xbox raises the game

The impressive Xbox One X hopes to beat Sony in the battle for Christmas sales

Its creators claim it is one of the most powerful gaming consoles on Earth. Now the newly launched Xbox One X from Microsoft is after a new accolade – to beat its rival Sony to dominate Christmas wishlists and the hearts of video game players.

Microsoft’s console, a substantial upgrade of the original Xbox One released in 2013, arrives almost exactly one year after Sony delivered a similar performance boost with its PlayStation 4 Pro.

Continue reading… …read more