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  1. As part of Instagram’s ongoing crackdown on the scourge of fake followers leaving fake likes on the accounts of equally fake influencers, parent company Facebook announced earlier today that it filed two separate lawsuits targeting four individuals whose stock and trade was selling fake engagement. The post notes that Facebook had previously sent multiple cease and desists to the companies in question since 2017, months before Instagram formally announced it was cracking down on accounts sporting a suspicious number of likes, follows, or comments of dubious origin. Acc
  2. Clarence Thomas reckons web giants need to do more to curb abuse Analysis US Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas has unexpectedly weighed in on the debate over internet giants' legal protections from the consequences of user-posted content, arguing this litigation shield should be removed or limited in future. In a statement [PDF] attached to the top court’s case list, where a related case citing Section 230 of the 1996 Communications Decency Act was rejected for consideration, Thomas noted on Tuesday that the Supreme Court has yet to interpret the legal
  3. The social network teams up with Carnegie Mellon University to find new ways to store and use renewable energy. Facebook has researchers who are trying to advance artificial intelligence through various projects. Facebook said Wednesday it will use artificial intelligence to help scientists find new ways to store and use renewable energy as part of project that could help combat climate change. The social network is partnering with Carnegie Mellon University to spur the use of solar and wind energy, which are cleaner than burning fossil fuels t
  4. As folks in the U.S. start to meander into flu season, Facebook decided that now’s the time to formally issue a “ban” on ads that discourage its users from getting vaccinated. “The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the importance of preventive health behaviors,” the company said in a corporate blog post announcing the change. “While public health experts agree that we won’t have an approved and widely available COVID-19 vaccine for some time, there are steps that people can take to stay healthy and safe. That includes getting the seasonal flu vaccine.” “T
  5. Facebook announces ban on anti-vaccination ads As part of a broader effort to promote public health Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge On Tuesday, Facebook announced a new policy banning ads that discourage the use of vaccines. Timed to the beginning of flu season, the new policy is also aimed at the ongoing proliferation of anti-vaccine groups on Facebook and growing skepticism about forthcoming vaccines for COVID-19. “Our goal is to help messages about the safety and efficacy o
  6. Facebook announces the old layout is going away in September For quite a while now, Facebook has been allowing users to switch to the new user interface but has always offered a way to switch back to the old layout. Facebook is now displaying a message explaining that the old interface is going away in September. The new message reads: “We’ve made improvements to the new Facebook.com and we’re excited for everyone to experience the new look. Before we make the classic Facebook unavailable in September, we hope that you’ll let us know h
  7. Facebook donates £1 million to help save UK’s WWII code-breaking center Bletchley Park The site has lost millions because of the coronavirus A former Bletchley Park employee, Jean Valentine, handles part of the Turing Bombe — an electromechanical computer used to crack Nazi Germany’s Enigma code during WWII. Photo by Rui Vieira / PA Images via Getty Images Facebook is donating £1 million ($1.3 million) to Bletchley Park, the UK center for Allied code-breaking during World War II that now operates as a museum.
  8. This article has been updated with a comment from Facebook. The governments of seven countries are calling on Facebook and other tech firms to do the technically impossible - to weaken encryption by giving law enforcement access to messages, whilst not reducing user safety. The governments of the U.S., U.K., Australia, New Zealand, Canada, India and Japan have issued the joint statement which pleads with Facebook specifically, as well as other tech firms, to drop “end-to-end encryption policies which erode the public’s safety online”. The govern
  9. Today we’re taking a look at how Facebook users are finding reasons why to quit the Social Network entirely. Per the latest update from the US Government House Antitrust Subcommittee, Facebook wields substantial monopoly powers and maintains power in ways that are anticompetitive or outright nefarious. Part of this latest set of findings, quotes from Mark Zuckerberg appear as veiled threats aimed at the co-founder of Instagram, suggesting that “refusing to enter into a partnership with Facebook, including acquisition, would have consequences for Instagram.” Part of the report relea
  10. Facebook bans QAnon entirely, says previous crackdown wasn’t enough QAnon pages and groups now banned even if they don't discuss violence. Enlarge / Supporters of President Donald Trump wearing "QAnon" T-shirts wait in line before a campaign rally at Freedom Hall on October 1, 2018, in Johnson City, Tennessee. Getty Images | Sean Rayford Facebook is banning the QAnon conspiracy-theorist group, expanding on a policy that previously led to the removal of over 1,500 QAnon-related pages and groups. Start
  11. Key Points Facebook Chief Revenue Officer David Fischer said Tuesday that models that rely on personalized advertising are “under assault” as Apple readies a change that will limit Facebook’s abilities to measure its ads. Apple’s change was previously planned as a feature in iOS 14, the version of the iPhone operating system released last month, but Apple said it was delaying the rollout until 2021. The change to Apple’s identifier for advertisers, or IDFA, will give iPhone users the option to block tracking when o
  12. Instagram, WhatsApp and Messenger will also get new tools to help support users' emotional health during the coronavirus pandemic. Facebook is launching an Emotional Health portal to connect users to mental health services and support. As the coronavirus pandemic exacerbates mental health problems worldwide, Facebook is launching a new emotional health resource center with expert guides and information, to connect users of the social media platform and the other apps it owns with services and support, the company said in a blog post on Monday.
  13. Amazon’s Growing Ad Business Could Forever Change Tech Google has long been known to monitor basically everything you do, and use the data it gleans to target banner and search ads. Facebook integrates ads into users’ news feeds, Groups, and other parts of the platform, which recently landed the company in hot water for running ads next to hate speech. But there’s a relatively new, rapidly growing player in the online advertising world: Amazon. The company’s advertising revenue has grown from almost nothing a few years ago to over $10 billion in late 2020.
  14. Facebook Shut Down Malware That Hijacked Accounts to Run Ads Hackers spent $4 million of victims' money to buy ads for diet pills, fake designer handbags, and more. SilentFade used a number of s sneaky tactics to go undetected, like turning off notifications for a victim's account.Photograph: Paul Linse/Getty Images Usually when you hear about malicious activity on Facebook it's tied up in geopolitical skulduggery of some sort. But on Thursda
  15. Any Video Downloader Pro, formerly known as HD Video Downloader Pro, is a Windows app to help you download videos from YouTube, Facebook, Dailymotion, and thousands of other video sharing sites. It accelerates your downloads by up to 5 times. Download videos from YouTube and thousands of other video sharing sites Any Video Downloader Pro can download videos from YouTube, Facebook, Dailymotion, Vimeo, and thousands of other video sharing sites. Download HD videos from video sharing sites You can download 720p, 1080p, 2K, 4K, 5K, 8K, and 3D videos from
  16. Facebook’s head of global policy has denied the tech giant could close its service to Europeans if local regulators order it to suspend data transfers to the US following a landmark Court of Justice ruling in July that has cemented the schism between US surveillance laws and EU privacy rights. Press reports emerged this week of a Dublin court filing by Facebook, which is seeking a stay to a preliminary suspension order on its EU-US data transfers, that suggested the tech giant could pull out of the region if regulators enforce a ban against its use of a data transfer
  17. Facebook is being sued by an Instagram user who claims the social media giant spied on users through their iPhone cameras. Brittany Conditi, who filed the lawsuit, said Facebook accessed Instagram users’ cameras even when they weren’t taking pictures or videos. Users first noticed a green FaceTime symbol appear on their phones when they were scrolling through their Instagram news feeds in July. Facebook has denied spying, and blamed a bug. Facebook is being sued over claims it spied on Instagram users through their iPhone cameras.
  18. BRUSSELS/SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Facebook on Tuesday launched a climate science information center to elevate credible sources on climate change, as critics question its role in the spread of misinformation on the issue. Facebook said the project is modeled on its COVID-19 Information Center, and launched a similar feature last month on voting in preparation for U.S. elections in November. The tool will be rolled out in the United States, France, Germany and the United Kingdom, and eventually to other countries. “The Climate Science Inf
  19. Facebook may block news from being shared on its platforms in Australia Proposed rules to force tech platforms to share ad revenues with news publishers are not workable, the company says Illustration by James Bareham / The Verge Facebook plans to block the sharing of local and international news stories on its platforms if legislation requiring tech platforms to pay publishers for content becomes law, the company said in a blog post Monday. “Australia is drafting a new regulation that
  20. Apple blocks Facebook update that called out 30-percent App Store ‘tax’ Facebook is ‘still working to make that information available’ Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge Apple blocked Facebook from informing users that Apple would collect 30 percent of in-app purchases made through a planned new feature, Facebook tells Reuters. Apple said the update violated an App Store rule that doesn’t let developers show “irrelevant” information to users. The feature lets Facebook users buy
  21. Facebook begins merging Instagram and Messenger chats in new update You might see this pop-up when you open Instagram Facebook appears to flipping the switch on integrating the chat systems for Instagram and Messenger. On Friday evening, several editors at The Verge across the country — on both iOS and Android devices — noticed an update screen popped up in Instagram’s mobile app with the message “There’s a New Way to Message on Instagram” with a list of features including a “new colorful look for your chats,” more emoji reactions, swipe-t
  22. Messenger's new chat plugin lets businesses reach customers even outside Facebook Facebook has introduced a new update to its Messenger plugin that makes it easier for businesses to talk to customers even if they are not logged in to the social networking site. In addition, the plugin has added a new intuitive design. The chat plugin incorporates the Messenger experience into a business website and customers can chat directly with that business, either as a guest or by using their existing Messenger account. The first iteration of the tool, unveiled in 2017,
  23. “Zuck off”: Doctors, nurses, scientists rail against Zuckerberg Backlash against Facebook's policies continues. Enlarge / Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg testifying before Congress in April 2018. It wasn't his only appearance in DC this decade. Bloomberg | Getty Images 26 with 20 posters participating San Francisco city officials are considering condemning the decision to name a local public hospital after Mark Zuckerberg—a move backed by nurses and doctors at the hospital, who have been railing against the Facebook
  24. Google, Facebook, and Twitter halt government data requests after new Hong Kong security law The companies are reviewing a new security law that gives China power to stifle dissent Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge Google, Facebook, and Twitter are pausing the processing of data requests from the Hong Kong government as they review a new security law that went into effect on July 1st. Google put its pause into place as soon as the law took effect last Wednesday. “[W]hen the law to
  25. Facebook is introducing a dark mode for mobile Users reported seeing the dark mode interface on iOS Illustration by James Bareham / The Verge After launching a dark mode for its desktop interface, Facebook confirms it is testing a dark mode for its mobile apps as well. As first noted by SocialMedia Today, Facebook has made the dark mode available to a very small percentage of people globally, a spokesperson told The Verge in an email Sunday. The mobile version of the dark mode Facebook introduced last month for desk
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