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Technology 1 October 2018

The Week in Internet News: Social Media Networks Sign onto Fake News Code

Grant Gross
By Grant GrossTechnology Reporter

Fake news code: Google and several operators of social networks have signed a code of conduct to combat fake news, CNet reports. The code of conduct, pushed by the European Union, stipulates that they must work to disrupt advertising revenues of accounts and websites that spread disinformation. The code also requires that the websites empower people to report disinformation and access other news sources.

Government news vs. fake news: Indonesia’s communications ministry plans to hold weekly briefings to highlight examples of “hoax” news reports, Time.com reports. The briefs will also focus on digital literacy as the country moves toward a presidential election next year. The government also plans to have a 70-member content management team to determine fake news.

Fake news as cancer: Lots of news about fake news this week. The billionaire owner of the Los Angeles Times as called fake news the “cancer of our time,” CNBC.com says. Meanwhile, cancer still exists. Patrick Soon-Shiong blamed social media for the spread of fake news.

Too little regulation? California’s recently passed Internet of Things security bill may be “too little, too late,” says an opinion piece on Diginomica.com. “No one seems to believe that SB-327 will completely – or even mostly – solve the problem of insecure IoT devices,” the author writes. Some people, however, think it’s a step in the right direction. And given that the IoT in still in many ways in its infancy, it’s hard to see how legislation now would be too late.

China, the world’s next AI power: Some lawmakers and experts in the United States are worried that China will soon overtake their own country in the development of Artificial Intelligence, GovTech.com says. A report from two U.S. lawmakers notes that China’s spending on AI research may soon dwarf U.S. spending.

Open censorship: While censorship typically happens in countries with a restricted Internet, there’s also a danger of it happening in places with a so-called “open” Internet, says a think piece on QZ.com. The article seems to take the position that too much freedom of speech is not a good thing. “It turns out this view of the open internet has a range of challenges that can be just as censorious to speech. The same power that has enabled marginalized and oppressed voices to organize, spread information, and drive attention to their issues is the same megaphone that enables government propagandists and hate groups to do the same.”

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