EU Gives Thumbs Up to Online Copyright Revamp; Facebook Pulls More Fake News Pages; Google to Fund Local Digital News Sources; Apple Card Extra Fraud Prevention Features

The EU’s revamp of its Copyright Directive has been approved by the EU Parliament after a 2 year process. Theverge.com reports that supporters claim it will balance the playing field between US tech giants and European content creators. It gives copyright holders more power over how big internet platforms distribute their content. Opponents of the new directive say it is too vague and will not only restrict how content is shared online, but will stifle free speech. One controversial part is effectively a ‘link tax’ that lets publishers charge Google News and others when they display snippets of stories. Another clause puts new requirements on YouTube and similar sites to filter and remove copyrighted content, or pay penalties. As with all things internet, a prime complaint is that it will be moot anyway, as people will find ways around it, while the new directive stifles free speech.

Facebook has killed another 2600+ pages, groups, and accounts, citing ‘coordinated inauthentic behavior.’ According to businessinsider.com, Facebook identified 3 separate operations, originating from Russia, Iran, Kosovo, and Macedonia. The Russians had the lion’s share of them, 1907 pages, groups, and accounts. The Russian ones were mostly spam, but also produced fake news about Ukraine. The reach of the Russian ones was some 1.7 million! An Iranian account was impersonating the BBC on Instagram.

Google is beginning an experiment to directly fund creation of local, digital-only news publications. 9to5google.com says they want to fund dozens of the in mid-sized cities…those of less than a half million people, that Google says ‘don’t have access to significant local sources of news and information.’ The initiative is called ‘The Compass Experiment,’ and Google will partner with McClatchy for the next 3 years. Google claims they will have no editorial control or ownership of the publications. The first 3 cities will be selected in the next few months….stay tuned.

With the surprising announcement of the Apple Card yesterday, here are some further details to flesh out the branded MasterCard Apple will offer through Goldman Sachs. We noted yesterday that it will primarily be a virtual card in your iPhone’s wallet, and now tech crunch.com fleshes out how the physical, titanium card will work…having no number, expiration date, or CVV on it. All that info will apparently live in the secure enclave on the iPhone, so when you use the physical card (and not Apple Pay), you check the Wallet on your iPhone to retrieve the card number and the rest. In actual use, the card will send a one-time unique dynamic security code that will act as the CVV. Since it will always change, it adds an extra layer of security should the card be compromised by a skimmer or the like. Other cards are now using biometrics like a fingerprint reader on their cards to fight this sort of thing…but Apple’s one-time CVV will even work online. The Apple Card is expected out this summer.



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