Indian PM Narendra Modi’s reelection spells more frustration for US tech giants

Amazon and Walmart’s problems in India look set to continue after Narendra Modi, the biggest force to embrace the country’s politics in decades, led his Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party to a historic landslide re-election on Thursday, reaffirming his popularity in the eyes of the world’s largest democracy. The re-election, which gives Modi’s government another […]

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Gender, race and social change in tech; Moira Weigel on the Internet of Women, Part Two

Tech ethics can mean a lot of different things, but surely one of the most critical, unavoidable, and yet somehow still controversial propositions in the emerging field of ethics in technology is that tech should promote gender equality. But does it? And to the extent it does not, what (and who) needs to change? In […]

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Indonesia restricts WhatsApp, Facebook and Instagram usage following deadly riots

Indonesia is the latest nation to hit the hammer on social media after the government restricted the use of WhatsApp and Instagram following deadly riots yesterday. Numerous Indonesia-based users are today reporting difficulties sending multimedia messages via WhatsApp, which is one of the country’s most popular chat apps, and posting content to Facebook, while the […]

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Tencent CEO warns companies must keep innovating to survive amid US-China tensions

On Tuesday, Tencent’s usually low-profile founder and CEO Pony Ma made rare comments to weigh in on escalating tensions between the United States and China, calling domestic tech companies to build more self-reliance in a bid to stay competitive. “China has come to the forefront of development. There is less and less room for taking […]

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U.S. mitigates Huawei ban by offering temporary reprieve

Two steps forward, one step back. The Trump administration has seemingly been trying to calibrate its strategy around its intensifying trade dispute with China. Last week, it effectively banned Huawei from importing U.S. technology, a decision that forced several American companies including Google to partly sever their relationships with the Chinese handset and telecom provider. […]

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On the Internet of Women with Moira Weigel

“Feminism,” the writer and editor Marie Shear famously said in an often-misattributed quote, “is the radical notion that women are people.” The genius of this line, of course, is that it appears to be entirely non-controversial, which reminds us all the more effectively of the past century of fierce debates surrounding women’s equality. And what […]

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MIT and U.S. Air Force team up to launch AI accelerator

The Pentagon is one of the largest technology customers in the world, purchasing everything from F-35 planes (roughly $90 million each) to cloud services (the JEDI contract was $10 billion). Despite outlaying hundreds of billions of dollars for acquisitions though, the Defense Department has struggled to push nascent technologies from startups through its punishing procurement […]

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Amazon faces greater shareholder pressure to limit sale of facial recognition tech to the government

This week could mark a significant setback for Amazon’s facial recognition business if privacy and civil liberties advocates — and some shareholders — get their way. Months earlier, shareholders tabled a resolution to limit the sale of Amazon’s facial recognition tech giant calls Rekognition to law enforcement and government agencies. It followed accusations of bias […]

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Why startups need to be careful about export licenses and the Huawei ban

America is the land of free trade … precisely until it is not. Through a thicket of laws and regulations, the U.S. government has broad control over what can get exported to whom, particularly in areas with sensitive technology or national security concerns. In general, those restrictions are loose, which is why startups mostly haven’t […]

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