Morning Consult Tech: HP to Cut up to 6,000 Jobs by 2025
 

Tech

Essential tech industry news & intel to start your day.
November 23, 2022
Twitter Email
 

Morning Consult Tech will be off for the rest of the week for the Thanksgiving holiday. The newsletter will resume on Monday.

 

Today’s Top News

  • HP Inc. plans to cut between 4,000 and 6,000 jobs by the end of 2025 in a restructuring that the company said will save it at least $1.4 billion a year (Axios)
  • An investigation by The Markup found that tax filing services including H&R Block, TaxAct and TaxSlayer have been providing sensitive financial information to Facebook from Americans who file their taxes online. The data includes names, email addresses, users’ income, filing status, refund amounts and dependents’ college scholarship amounts. (The Markup)
  • For the first time ever, the Federal Communications Commission moved to block a voice provider from the entire U.S. phone network for failing to comply with regulations that target illegal robocalls. As part of the order, Global UC will lose access to the network as other providers will be forced to stop doing business with the company. (CNN)
  • Republican Reps. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (Wash.) and James Comer (Ky.) wrote a letter to ByteDance Ltd.’s TikTok expressing concerns that the company might have provided inaccurate information to Congress about how much user data the company shares with China. The letter indicates that Republicans might take a tougher stance on TikTok when they assume control of the House in January. (Reuters)
 

Chart Review

 
 

What Else You Need to Know

General
 

Elon Musk’s Twitter Role Puts Tesla Board Under New Scrutiny

Peter Eavis and Isabella Simonetti, The New York Times

Corporate governance experts say the electric-car maker’s directors may need to rein in the chief executive, with whom many have personal ties.

 

Elon Musk’s Twitter Takeover Triggers Partisan Clash on Government’s Role

John D. McKinnon, The Wall Street Journal

Elon Musk’s takeover of Twitter Inc. is fueling a partisan clash in Washington, as Democrats raise concerns about the platform’s security and Republicans counter that the criticism is a thinly veiled attempt to stamp out conservative voices on the site.

 
Antitrust and Competition
 

Musk’s Twitter gets weird and wild, but Washington is sticking around

Rebecca Kern and Meridith McGraw, Politico

Elon Musk is making good on his promise to loosen the guardrails at Twitter — welcoming back controversy magnets like Donald Trump and Marjorie Taylor Greene — all while hectoring Democrats and posting lewd memes of his own. But, so far, official Washington isn’t fleeing the new, more rough-and-tumble Twitter.

 

Global legal perils beset a downsized Twitter

Ashley Gold, Axios

Twitter faces a mass of forces abroad and in Washington that aim to compel the company to obey privacy rules, speech limits and other regulations as Elon Musk remakes the service.

 

How SBF Created the New Playbook for Manipulating Washington, D.C.

Maxwell Strachan, Motherboard

Disgraced FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried bent Washington to his will using “every mechanism available,” with sophistication and speed. “He played D.C. like a fiddle.”

 
Artificial Intelligence/Automation
 

Researchers: AI in connected cars eased rush hour congestion

Travis Loller, The Associated Press

As millions of people travel the interstates this Thanksgiving, many will encounter patches of traffic at a standstill for no apparent reason — no construction or accident. Researchers say the problem is you.

 

Cruise, Waymo push robotaxis amid doubts about self-driving tech

Joann Muller, Axios

Cruise and Waymo are plowing ahead with plans to bring robotaxis to more cities, despite growing disillusionment among investors and automakers about the timeline for self-driving cars.

 

Google has a secret new project that is teaching artificial intelligence to write and fix code. It could reduce the need for human engineers in the future.

Hugh Langley, Insider Premium

Google is working on a secretive project that uses machine learning to train code to write, fix, and update itself.

 

Lawsuit Takes Aim at the Way A.I. Is Built

Cade Metz, The New York Times

A programmer is suing Microsoft, GitHub and OpenAI over artificial intelligence technology that generates its own computer code.

 

Beauty in the eye of the A.I.: How inherent racial bias has shaped A.I. and what brands are doing to address it

Gabby Shacknai, Fortune

Joy Buolamwini’s idea seemed simple. For a class project while at graduate school at MIT, she wanted to create a mirror that would inspire her every day by projecting digital images of her heroes onto her face. But when she started using the basic facial recognition software needed to program the mirror, she came across an unexpected issue: it couldn’t detect her face. 

 

The growing army of ‘Grinch bots’ trying to steal Christmas

Adam Bluestein, Fast Company

Retailers are fighting a constant battle against a growing army of bad bots trying to snatch up all the hot holiday gifts and toys.

 
Telecom, Wireless and Internet Access
 

Telecoms operators face anxious wait for 5G to pay off

Anna Gross, Financial Times

Consumers may be wowed by the next generation of mobile telephony — but they are taking their time.

 
Mobile Technology
 

How AMD became a chip giant and leapfrogged Intel after years of playing catch-up

Katie Tarasov, CNBC

Advanced Micro Devices made history this year when it surpassed Intel by market cap for the first time ever. Intel has long held the lead in the market for computer processors, but AMD’s ascent results from the company branching out into entirely new sectors.

 
Cybersecurity and Privacy
 

Retail braces for wave of holiday phishing, ransomware scams

Sam Sabin, Axios

Hackers are ramping up their phishing and ransomware campaigns targeting the retail sector as the holiday shopping season kicks off.

 

Agency Recommends Firmer Data, Algorithm Regulations to Protect Online Privacy

Alexandra Kelley, Nextgov

The National Telecommunications and Information Administration recommended new limitations on companies harvesting and selling online user data, as the federal government continues to explore potential consumer privacy protections. 

 

Trade group calls on White House to clarify cybersecurity self-attestation proposals for software providers

John Hewitt Jones, FedScoop

The Information Technology Industry Council has called on the White House to clarify proposals that would require software providers to attest to the security of their products when selling to federal agencies.

 

U.S. FBI joins Continental cyberattack investigation

Reuters

The U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation is involved in an investigation of a recent cyberattack on German automotive supplier Continental, a person familiar with the matter told Reuters on Wednesday.

 
Social Media and Content Moderation
 

Trump Media deal partner says shareholders approve delay of merger with Truth Social parent

Lillian Rizzo, CNBC

The blank check company that plans to take Trump Media and Technology Group and its Truth Social platform public said Tuesday that shareholders voted to delay a deadline for its merger with the former president’s firm by several months.

 

Elon Musk tries to blame ‘activists’ for his Twitter moderation council lie

Mitchell Clark, The Verge

Elon Musk justified reinstating Trump on Twitter based on a personal poll — weeks after promising that “no major content decisions or account reinstatements will happen” until a moderation council was formed.

 

Advertisers are dropping Twitter. Musk can’t afford to lose any more.

Naomi Nix and Jeremy B. Merrill, The Washington Post

More than a third of Twitter’s top 100 marketers have not advertised on the social media network in the past two weeks, a Washington Post analysis of marketing data found — an indication of the extent of skittishness among advertisers about billionaire Elon Musk’s control of the company.

 

Meta confirms U.S. military involvement in sprawling phony social media operation

AJ Vicens, CyberScoop

People associated with the U.S. military were behind dozens of phony Facebook accounts, more than a dozen pages, a pair of groups and 26 Instagram accounts that pushed pro-U.S. messaging while attempting to hide their real identities, Facebook’s parent company Meta said in a report published Tuesday.

 

White House’s Jha: Social media platform owners should consider role in COVID misinformation

Reuters

Owners of social media platforms should consider their personal responsibility regarding health disinformation, and the public should choose reputable sources to trust, White House COVID-19 response coordinator Ashish Jha said on Tuesday.

 

As Elon Musk Cuts Costs at Twitter, Some Bills Are Going Unpaid

Mike Isaac and Ryan Mac, The New York Times

Mr. Musk and his advisers are examining all types of expenses at Twitter. Some of the social media company’s vendors have gotten stiffed.

 

Twitter Restores Anti-Trans Accounts and Fuels Hate, Groups Say

Emily Birnbaum, Bloomberg

Twitter Inc. Chief Executive Officer Elon Musk is restoring a string of accounts previously suspended for harassing transgender people, rolling back protections for the LGBTQ community as the country confronts the aftermath of a shooting in a Colorado gay club that left five people dead and dozens wounded. 

 

Facebook’s Most Popular Posts Were Trash. Here Is How It Cleaned Up.

Jeff Horwitz, The Wall Street Journal

Third-quarter content report shows only one in the top 20 posts qualified as engagement bait.

 

French regulator warns Twitter of legal duty to moderate misinformation, hate

Annabelle Timsit, The Washington Post

France’s digital regulator has asked Twitter to confirm that it can still meet its legal obligations to moderate harmful content and misinformation as the company undergoes a major reorganization, including layoffs of half the company’s workforce, under the ownership of Elon Musk.

 

Musk’s ‘free speech’ agenda dismantles safety work at Twitter, insiders say

Cat Zakrzewski et al., The Washington Post

Amid the wider turmoil since his takeover last month, Musk has moved rapidly to undermine Twitter’s deliberative content moderation system.

 

Amazon’s Twitch Makes Changes to Address Child Predation on Platform

Cecilia D’Anastasio, Bloomberg

Twitch, the video game livestreaming site popular with teens and kids, announced changes it’s making on the platform to increase safety for its young users in the wake of criticism that it enables child predation.

 
Tech Workforce
 

Apple iPhone factory workers clash with police in China

Ryan McMorrow et al., Financial Times

Violence erupts at Foxconn plant in Zhengzhou as Covid cases rise across country.

 
Opinions, Editorials and Perspectives
 

Will Elon Musk’s Twitter Succeed?

The Wall Street Journal

Students discuss whether the platform’s changes will save or ruin the company.

 

To be effective on tech, Congress needs a tech committee

Maya Kornberg, The Hill

Congressional inertia has many causes, from the Senate filibuster to lobbying by powerful interests. One under-examined reason for the inaction on tech is that there is no congressional committee focused on it.

 

Consider all options for the $65B in federal broadband funds

Dave Wright, GCN

The $65 billion in federal funds that will be disbursed to state and local governments to improve broadband access across the country presents the nation with an extraordinary and unprecedented opportunity. Will the U.S. answer the call to finally close the digital divide? Is the moment now, as this unique opportunity has become manifest?