Tech Sightings, November 5, 2014

Posted November 5th, 2014 at 2:00 pm (UTC-4)
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Germany’s Top Publisher Bows to Google in News Licensing Row

Based on the findings of a two-week experiment, Germany’s biggest news publisher, Axel Springer,  says it scrapped a bid to block Google from running snippets of articles from its newspapers.

China Proposes Tougher Rules on Text Message Spam

China proposed stricter regulations on sending spam to mobile phones, including fines of up to 30,000 yuan ($4,907) for violations. The proposed rules would require explicit consent from users before companies or individuals could run ads. The new rules also say the texts should be delivered free of charge.

Nintendo Wants to Watch You Sleep

The gaming company, Nintendo unveiled new details about its “QOL” platform, which stands for “quality of life” and includes a line of health-focused devices. The first will be a bedside sensor that tracks your sleep, sends the data up to the cloud for analysis, and produces suggestions to help you get more rest.

Dating Site For People With STIs Fined $16.5m (£10.3m)

A plaintiff filed a lawsuit alleging the dating site Positive Singles misled him about its privacy policies when he joined. The service promised full confidentiality, but the complaint alleges its parent company, Successful Match, mined profiles and displayed members’ images and other information on its subsidiary website. A jury agreed with the claim, and ordered the company to pay $1.5m (£940,000) in compensation, plus $15 million (£9.4m) in punitive damages.

Apple’s iOS 8 vs. Android Lollipop: Which Mobile OS is King?

Google just released  Android 5.0 Lollipop, while its rival,  Apple, debuted iOS 8 just two short months ago. With the releases, which techno titans OS should be crowned ‘the king of mobile’? Yahoo tech guru’s compare the two.

IBM Launches New Cloud Security Practice

In a recent survey, IBM says 44% of corporate security leaders are convinced a major security breach is bound to happen. For this reason, cloud computing is big and getting bigger. Companies are throwing sensitive data into the cloud as fast as they can get it there. But safety is still a concern.

Unicode Wants To Fix Emoji’s Ethnicity Problem

Emoji were invented in Japan 1999 and continue to go by their original name, which means “picture letter” in Japanese. Today, Emoji may soon become as racially diverse as the people who use them.

Silicon Valley Privacy Push Sets Up Arms Race With World’s Spies

U.S. technology companies are facing escalating pressure to let police and spies tap into smartphone data and e-mails in the name of fighting terrorism. Silicon Valley so far shows no sign it plans to give in.

Pirate Bay Co-founder Arrested at Thai-Lao Border

Hans Fredrik Lennart Neij, who uses the alias TiAMO, was detained Monday by Thai immigration police. Neij, one of the founders of popular file-sharing website The Pirate Bay along with other co-founders, was convicted of aiding copyright infringement by a court in Sweden in 2009. He fled the country after being released on bail.


Aida Akl
Aida Akl is a journalist working on VOA's English Webdesk. She has written on a wide range of topics, although her more recent contributions have focused on technology. She has covered both domestic and international events since the mid-1980s as a VOA reporter and international broadcaster.

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