10 things in tech you need to know today

Alex Jones from InfoWars.

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Alex Jones from InfoWars.
source
YouTube/screengrab

Good morning! This is the tech news you need to know this Friday.

1. Facebook got caught up in a massive, contentious discussion about why it permits conspiracy InfoWars on its site. The company showcased its efforts to fight fake news on Wednesday, and defended its decision to allow a page that peddles 9/11 conspiracy theories.

2. The Department of Justice is appealing a judge’s decision to allow a merger between AT&T and Time Warner. The government argued that the merger would hurt competition, limit choices and jack up prices for consumers to stream TV and movies.

3. Celebrities will see a big dip in their Twitter followers, thanks to new rules about ‘locked’ accounts. Twitter will stop counting locked accounts towards people’s follower numbers, affecting 6% of all follows.

4. Facebook hinted that it will contest its first ever fine for the Cambridge Analytica scandal. European policy director Richard Allen said there was a ‘debate’ about whether the firm should pay a £500,000 fine for breaking UK data laws.

5. Apple launched a new set of Macbook Pros on Thursday. The updated computers have faster processors and most notably, a “quieter” keyboard.

6. Facebook closed a loophole that let third parties access the names of people who were in closed, private groups. CNBC reported that women in a group about breast cancer complained about the potential privacy violation after discovering the loophole.

7. Magic Leap’s CEO said critics can’t understand the multibillion-dollar startup’s technology without trying it. He said ‘You could never experience TV on the radio’ after people were underwhelmed by Magic Leap’s mixed reality technology.

8. Russian Twitter accounts posed as local US news sources during the presidential election, in an attempt to undermine Americans’ trust in local media. NPR found 48 accounts run by Russia’s Internet Research Agency with names such as @ElPasoTopNews.

9. The fifth season of hit game Fortnite has arrived with big updates. The new updates include several new locations on the island, a new vehicle, and even a new game mechanic.

10. The defunct gossip blog Gawker has a new owner. Bryan Goldberg, who founded Bustle and Bleacher Report, put in the winning $1.35 million bid for Gawker.com in an auction.

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