News of the Week; September 18, 2019


  1. Counterpoint: Big telcos have no business howling over CRTC decision that encourages fair internet prices – Any unfairness pales in comparison to what Canadian consumers have had to put up with for years
  2. 50% of US homes still won’t have fiber broadband by 2025, study says
  3. AT&T to lose 1.1 million TV subscribers as DirecTV continues nosedive
  4. Lawsuit: AT&T signed customers up for DirecTV Now without their knowledge
  5. AT&T considers getting rid of DirecTV as TV business tanks, WSJ reports
  6. AT&T’s Terrible New TV Branding Confuses Even AT&T
  7. Some Investors Are Fed Up With AT&T’s Costly Obsession With Merger Mania
  8. FCC Commissioner Investigating Payola in the Radio Industry 
  9. Colorado Town Offers 1 Gbps For $60 After Years Of Battling Comcast
  10. Comcast Sues Maine For Demanding It Sell TV Channels À La Carte
  11. Verizon plans 5G Home Internet in every city where it deploys mobile 5G
  12. At Qualcomm, 5G is headed everywhere and into virtually everything
  13. Upcoming FCC Consumer Advisory Committee Meeting Will Consider Robocall Working Group Recommendation 
  14. FCC Expands Anti-Spoofing Prohibitions to Foreign-Originated Calls, Text-Messaging Services
  15. FCC’s consumer Advisory Committee adopts robocall blocking recommendation
  16. Alarm Industry Communications Committee Seeks Reconsideration of Call Blocking Declaratory Ruling to Prevent Blocking of Alarm Calls
  17. Fall TV Is the Crystallization of Broadcast’s Existential Crisis 


  1. Examining The Expanding Web Of Chinese And Russian Information Controls
  2. Ninth Circuit’s LinkedIn Decision Does Not Greenlight the Unauthorized Webscraping of Public Websites
  3. The Ninth Circuit Takes On Web Scraping
  4. Instagram Confirms Security Issue Exposed User Accounts And Phone Numbers
  5. YouTube, Facebook, Instagram Are Epicenters For Steroid Sales — And So Are Their Recommendation Algorithms (Study)
  6. Facebook plans launch of its own “Supreme Court” for handling takedown appeals
  7. Audible fires back at book publishers, says captions are fair use: Audible Captions is not a book of any kind,” Audible writes in court filing.
  8. Hotel Owner Files Libel Suit Against Reviewer For Calling Nazis Nazis, Gets Support From Austrian Court
  9. Twitter Stands Up For Devin Nunes’ Parody Accounts: Won’t Reveal Who’s Behind Them
  10. History Repeats Itself: Twitter Launches Illegal SF Street Stencil Campaign Just As IBM DId Decades Ago
  11. Scraping the Web: Practical Implications From the hiQ v. LinkedIn Opinion
  12. Facebook is launching a streaming device that watches you while you watch TV
  13. House lawmakers ask Apple, Amazon, Facebook and Google to turn over trove of records in antitrust probe
  14. Congress wants Facebook, Google, Apple, and Amazon emails as probe heats up
  15. WSJ: Amazon changed search results to boost profits despite internal dissent
  16. Kickstarter accused of “union busting campaign” by former employees: Two former staff claim they were fired for their roles in unionising Kickstarter’s workforce
  17. Ninth Circuit Upholds’s Cost-Sharing Valuation
  18. The $24 Billion Online Casino Boom China Is Struggling to Halt: The Communist Party is hard-pressed to stop the spread of digital gambling in Asia.
  19. Self-Help in Cyberspace: A Path Forward
  20. Would the Internet Be Healthier Without ‘Like’ Counts?: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube have moved to hide or obscure measures of popularity, in the name of less toxic dialog. Users give a thumbs-down.
  21. OONI Explorer team unlock the web’s untold censorship stories
  22. Amazon Music Jumps Into the Hi-Res Audio Game: Amazon adds “high definition” and “ultra high definition” options to its music-streaming service, taking hi-fi music into the mass market
  23. Alibaba Opens Online Marketplace to U.S.-Based Businesses
  24. Content Moderation Is Impossible: Facebook Settles Legal Fight Over Famous Painting Of A Woman’s Genitals
  25. Facebook launches its own Supreme Court
  26. Facing Fines—The Mechanics of Facebook’s Reportedly Forthcoming FTC Settlement
  27. Facebook Unveils Several Video Product Updates, Including ‘Live’ Rehearsals, Pre-Scheduled ‘Watch Parties’
  28. Congress Is Investigating Apple’s Repair Monopoly: Part of the antitrust investigation centers on “Apple’s restrictions on third-party repairs.”
  29. Apple Takes on EU’s Vestager in Record $14 Billion Tax Fight
  30. Apple, services and moats
  31. The U1 chip in the iPhone 11 is the beginning of an Ultra Wideband revolution
  32. Apple’s Big YouTube Stream Was Just Part Of Its Swelling Social Video Impact
  33. Disney CEO Bob Iger resigns from his Apple board seat
  34. “We Could Say Anything To Each Other”: Bob Iger Remembers Steve Jobs, The Pixar Drama, And The Apple Merger That Wasn’t
  35. Less Human Than Human: The Design Philosophy of Steve Jobs – To what degree do “good design,” or “taste,” depend on human values?
  36. Ninth Circuit Reverses Course While Quoting Its Own Precedent Saying Otherwise; Says Section 230 Doesn’t Cover Anti-Competitive Moderation
  37. Terrible Ninth Circuit 230(c)(2) Ruling Will Make the Internet More Dangerous–Enigma v. Malwarebytes (Eric Goldman)
  38. Court Enforces Arbitration Clause in “Modified Clickwrap”–Chen v. Sierra Trading Post
  39. That Time EFF Got A Copyright Takedown Demand Of Its Own Artwork
  40. Forwarding email is a crime, Jerry Falwell Jr. says after leaks to media: A legal expert told the AP Falwell’s claims were “totally insane.”
  41. Meet the three North Korean hacking groups funding the country’s weapons programs
  42. NBCUniversal’s streaming service is called Peacock: Launching with a slate of original and beloved licensed series
  43. NBCUniversal’s Streaming Service Peacock Will Reboot ‘Battlestar Galactica’ And Revive ‘Saved By The Bell’
  44. NBC Peacock is Comcast’s dive into the crazy streaming-video fray
  45. Oh, frak: There’s another Battlestar Galactica reboot coming
  46. Bizarre Streaming Service Quibi Already Has a Better Lineup Than Apple TV+
  47. Tinder Wraps First Scripted Series, A Choose-Your-Own-Adventure Set In The Apocalypse
  48. Insights: Music’s 360 Deals Come To The Hypercompetitive Video Streaming World
  49. Whistle Inks Multi-Year Deal With U.K.-Based Soccer Content Company ‘OTRO’
  50. Google’s ‘Smart City’ Project For Toronto
  51. YouTube’s Abbreviated Subscriber Counts Are Here
  52. Google launches YouTube Music Charts in India
  53. YouTube Changes Music Chart 24-Hour Rankings to Exclude Paid Ad Views
  54. YouTube Will No Longer Count Ads Toward Music Charts, 24-Hour Music Video Debuts
  55. YouTube Is Bringing Its Most Prominent Ad Product, The Masthead, To Smart TV Screens
  56. YouTube introduces a massive ad box to its TV app: A prominent feature on the standard site
  57. YouTube To Shutter Its TV-Optimized ‘Leanback’ Feature On Oct. 2
  58. YouTube Testing New ‘Profile Cards’ That Showcase Channel-Specific Comment History
  59. Google Is Adding The Ability To Search For ‘Key Moments’ Within YouTube Videos
  60. Google Launches Ability to Find Key Moments in YouTube Videos via Search
  61. SoulPancake’s NewFronts Presentation: Control Over Its YouTube Ad Inventory, New Programming, And A PBS Partnership
  62. Lilly Singh Posts Confident Late-Night Debut With Socially-Conscious Bits, YouTube-Esque Challenges
  63. ‘Close Friends,’ for a Monthly Fee: Influencer culture has normalized charging money for all kinds of intimacy.
  64. Instagram Partners With Jonah Hill On Anti-Bullying Docuseries For IGTV
  65. Instagram Debuts Jonah Hill’s ‘Un-filtered’ Bullying Docu-Series
  66. Instagram tightens rules on diet and cosmetic surgery posts: Platform responds to concerns about impact of content on mental health of young people
  67. Instagram, Facebook, and the Perils of “Sharenting”
  68. Fantasy Football Videos Gain Steam All Summer From Unexpected Sources
  69. Whistle Inks Content Deal With U.K. Soccer Subscription App ‘OTRO’
  70. Christine Sydelko Says She’s Quitting The Internet: “It’s Such A Trivial Job”
  71. PewDiePie Retracts $50K Donation To Anti-Defamation League, Says It Doesn’t “Feel Genuine”
  72. Rooster Teeth Lays Off 13% Of Staff, Is Beginning “A New Chapter,” CEO Says
  73. DoubleVerify Becomes a Snapchat Measurement Partner: Its viewability and fraud verification technology will help brands maximize their campaigns
  74. Snapchat Is Once Again Pivoting Back to News
  75. #No Filter: Terminating an Employee for Social Media Posts – Part 2
  76. Volkswagen’s bold plan to create a new car operating system
  77. It’s real and it’s spectacular: Netflix buys exclusive rights to stream Seinfeld
  78. Warner Media’s Rooster Teeth Lays Off 50 Employees: Cuts represent about 13% of the Austin-based digital production company’s employees
  79. WarnerMedia Unveils J.J. Abrams, Bad Robot Mega-Deal
  80. CBS, Viacom, and WarnerMedia ban e-cigarette advertisements amid vaping health crisis: Following a similar CNN ban last week
  81. One Year After Acquiring Ecommerce Startup ‘Kit’, Patreon Sells It To Affiliate Link Company Geniuslink
  82. England’s Law Commission reports on e-signatures – A missed opportunity?
  83. Just How Far Does California’s New IoT Security Law Reach?
  84. Rhode Island Expands Electronic Money Transfer Licensing Requirements to Certain Cryptocurrency Service Providers
  85. Björk made music’s first “VR pop album”—she opens up about its heartbreak
  86. Say hello to 802.11ax: Wi-Fi 6 device certification begins today
  87. Does The Public Care About Tech Backlash? And Does That Matter?
  88. Impact of digital disruption worldwide
  89. I researched Uighur society in China for 8 years and watched how technology opened new opportunities – then became a trap


  1. Google is changing its search algorithm to prioritize original news reporting: Humans will train it, as usual
  2. On “AI” replacing jobs and humans
  3. Artificial Intelligence & the Intellectual Property Landscape
  4. Who needs qubits? Factoring algorithm run on a probabilistic computer
  5. Video: Deterministic vs. replicated AI: Building For Honor’s battlefield
  6. The LawBytes Podcast, Episode 24: A Tribute to Ian Kerr (Michael Geist) 


  1. Digital privacy evolves in class actions: With two recent failed digital privacy class-action certifications, litigators say certification is becoming a higher hurdle to pass
  2. District court allows majority of privacy invasion class action claims to proceed against social media company
  3. Millions of Americans’ Medical Images and Data Are Available on the Internet. Anyone Can Take a Peek.
  4. Millions of Americans’ medical images and data are available on the Internet
  5. University Of Alabama Is Using A Location-Tracking App To Punish Students For Leaving Football Games Early
  6. The DMV Is Selling Your Data To Vast Array Of Third Parties
  7. Hackers are exploiting a platform-agnostic flaw to track mobile phone locations
  8. Advanced hackers are infecting IT providers in hopes of hitting their customers
  9. You’d Think The FBI Would Be More Sensitive To Protecting Encrypted Communications Now That We Know The Russians Cracked The FBI’s Comms
  10. Privacy Regulators Turning Up the Heat: Major Fines for Data Breaches and Privacy Violations This Summer
  11. Los Angeles partnership launches platform to help people catch phishes
  12. Encryption Working Group Releases Paper To ‘Move The Conversation Forward’
  13. Denmark Releases 32 Prisoners Convicted Because Of Flawed Mobile Phone Tracking Data
  14. Spouse of Ring exec among lawmakers trying to weaken Calif. privacy law
  15. California’s Consumer Privacy Act Completes its 2019 Legislative Journey
  16. California now has toughest law in U.S. for the collection of personal information
  17. And At the End of the Day, the CCPA Remains Very Much the Same 
  18. California Legislature Passes CCPA Amendments and Privacy Bills
  19. Compliance Tips From the Largest COPPA Settlement Ever
  20. CCPA’s Moving Target Comes into Focus
  21. Nevada’s New Privacy Law Will Go Into Effect Next Month: Are You Ready?
  22. A connected world will be a playground for hackers: Few companies making connected gadgets have much experience with cyber security
  23. Feds seek to seize all profits from Snowden’s book over NDA violation
  24. DOJ Decides To Help Publicize Snowden’s Memoir By Suing Him For Failing To Run His Book By The CIA And NSA First


  1. Mercedes’s Claims Against Street Artists Survive Dismissal Motion 
  2. When IP meets counterculture: Is graffiti protected by copyright?
  3. After Being Sued, Mississippi Rewrites Its Unconstitutional Ban On The Use Of Meat Words By Vegan Food Producers
  4. New Mexico City Starts Crowdfunding Effort To Pay For Its Stupid Defense Of Constitutional Violations
  5. Lawsuit Settlement Over Detainment Of A Journalist Will Force Denver Police Department To Admit The First Amendment Exists 
  6. Australian Aboriginal Flag Mess Is Getting Worse — All Thanks To Copyright 
  7. USPTO Drops Its Demands For Applicants’ Green Cards
  8. The Music Business Wants to Blow Up Copyright – and the Trump Administration Is On Board
  9. She’s just not that ‘Into You’ – Ariana Grande seeks $10 million after snubbing Forever 21 
  10. Charlotte Tilbury successful in copyright action against Aldi for “lookalike” makeup
  11. All Over the Map: Publishers, Writers, Small Towns & Apartment Owners Weigh In On Consent Decree Debate 
  12. Researchers analyzed more than 300,000 local news stories on Facebook. Here’s what they found.: “Aside from critical information needs, 31 percent of stories categorized covered sports and 9 percent were obituaries.” 
  13. THE Ohio State University Loses Its Trademark Application For ‘THE’ 
  14. Liverpool FC Fans Plan Protest Of Their Own Club Over Trademark Issue 
  15. AB InBev Fails To Get ‘Patagonia’ Trademark Suit Dismissed
  16. Monster Energy Opposes Teenager’s Trademark Application Over Logos Not At All Similar
  17. Fluid Trademarks: Will Companies Go With the Flow?
  18. Intellectual Property Is Neither Intellectual, Nor Property: Discuss
  19. Elections Advertising—What You Need to Know About the Third-Party Advertising Rules
  20. The amendment to the Patent Rules – Coming into Force October 30
  21. The Cutthroat Battle for Controlling Le Monde
  22. No-deal brexit and intellectual property
  23. The MoviePass Mess Has Finally Come To An End
  24. Ken Burns’ Soft-Focus Look at Country Music: The filmmaker’s latest documentary has more than three chords, not enough of the truth.
  25. The Decline and Fall of the Modern Nerd: The sad saga of how fandom transformed from being about love into hate and intolerance
  26. The Female Patrons Who Shaped Art History
  27. No, James Murdoch Doesn’t Watch “Succession”: After leaving the family empire, Rupert Murdoch’s son is fighting threats to democracy that sound an awful lot like Fox News.
  28. The 100 best TV shows of the 21st century
  29. The 100 best films of the 21st century


  1. Parliamentary committee recommends banning loot box sales to children: Report proposes industry tax to fund research into the harmful effects of gaming, slams “wilfully obtuse” industry representatives
  2. UK Parliament: Ban all loot boxes until evidence proves they’re safe for kids
  3. UK committee argues loot boxes should be covered by gambling regulations
  4. Electronic Arts responds to DCMS committee calls for loot box regulation: Publisher “doesn’t agree with all conclusions” but will continue dialogue with UK government
  5. TIGA: Government should “urgently” carry out research around loot boxes and gambling – CEO Dr Richard Wilson raises impartiality concerns over suggestion of taxing industry to fund research; PEGI also weighs in
  6. The Podcast: A Turning Point For Loot Boxes? – Haydn and Brendan discuss the potential consequences of recommendations that the UK government introduces regulation
  7. Nintendo’s ROM Site War Continues With Huge Lawsuit Against Site Despite Not Sending DMCA Notices
  8. Anti-bullying advocates assess what’s wrong in games: There’s a cultural problem that isn’t going to fix itself overnight, but behaviours can and do change with the right support
  9. Sea of Thieves adds microtransaction store in latest update
  10. Former Donkey Kong champ threatens to sue Guinness over record removal
  11. Steam’s latest discovery update tilts the algorithm away from popular games
  12. Discord cuts games from paid subscription plan after Nitro Games fails to take off
  13. Discord pulls free games from Nitro: Chat service pulls feature from subscription offering because “vast majority of Nitro subscribers didn’t play them”
  14. Second person gets prison sentence in fatal swatting case: Call of Duty WWII player gets 15 months for asking third party to report emergency at online opponent’s address
  15. Instigator of fatal Kansas swatting receives prison sentence
  16. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare offering cross-platform play in all modes
  17. Devs restore Modern Warfare’s mini-map after two days of beta backlash
  18. Video: A cautionary tale in community crisis management
  19. Newzoo: Android games will earn more revenue than iOS games in 2019 – Between Google Play and third-party stores, Android games will earn majority of revenue for the first time this year
  20. Google Stadia Founder’s Edition is nearly sold out: Premium bundle is being replaced with similar bundle sans Buddy Pass with a different controller
  21. Nintendo’s weird exercise ring is used to control a Switch RPG
  22. Nintendo’s first Ring-Con game is a Switch fitness RPG: Ring Fit Adventure
  23. Nintendo’s new fitness game is Ring Fit Adventure: Switch title uses new Ring-Con and leg strap peripherals to sense movement, launches October 18
  24. How do people find your game on Switch?: A discoverability run-down
  25. Sega Genesis Mini review: $80 delivers a ton of blast-processing fun
  26. Report: The PS4 has sold-through 30 million units in the United States
  27. PlayStation 4 has sold 30m units in the US, analyst reveals: Meanwhile, Niko Partners’ Daniel Ahmad also says Gears 5’s boxed sales in the UK are “tiny and no longer important” for Microsoft
  28. Gears 5 saw 3 million players during launch week through Game Pass and retail
  29. Rockstar Games now has its own game launcher on PC
  30. Rockstar Games launches its own storefront: GTA V, Bully, others now available through latest publisher-driven game launcher
  31. Rockstar Games Launcher: We install it on Windows so you don’t have to
  32. Gears 5 tops 3 million players in first week: Microsoft says The Coalition sequel enjoyed “the biggest launch week of any Xbox Game Studios title this generation”
  33. EMEAA charts: Slam dunk for NBA 2K20 in launch week – Strong digital sales push older games into the top ten, while Game Pass sees Gears 5 barely rank
  34. Borderlands 3 has nearly doubled Borderlands 2’s peak concurrents record on PC
  35. Borderlands 3 is the biggest UK boxed launch of 2019: But the lack of digital data makes all of this hard to compare
  36. Borderlands 3 PC doubles 2’s peak concurrent users at launch: Gearbox boss Randy Pitchford reveals latest outing is breaking company records despite Epic backlash
  37. Borderlands 3 is a lot more Borderlands, in ways both good and bad
  38. Apple Arcade soft launches early, to surprise of some developers
  39. Blog: The long slow death of an indie studio
  40. Indie game pricing is in a familiar death spiral | Opinion: Data suggests a race to the bottom in PC indie game pricing, and Apple Arcade is a reminder of where this process leads
  41. Swedish games industry generated €1.87bn in 2018, employs almost 8,000 people: Latest figures from Dataspelsbranschen also shows the number of companies is also on the rise
  42. Blog: NetEase drives mobile games business in Japan, Tencent targets emerging markets
  43. Scavengers dev Midwinter Entertainment acquired by Improbable
  44. Keywords expands game audio services with TV+Synchron Berlin acquisition
  45. JoJo Siwa’s Latest Business Venutre Is A Mobile Game Called ‘Live To Dance’
  46. Ex-King, Z2 devs launch Starform: New Seattle-based studio aims to make online games for friends, attracts $1.25 million in funding
  47. How to develop for a licence (successfully): Brand Licensing Europe’s Anna Knight speaks to developers and IP holders about pleasing both fans and gamers
  48. Football Manager boss Miles Jacobson calls for an end to plastic packaging: Sports Interactive director tells us he expects savings of up to 20 tonnes of plastic as series switches to eco-friendly cases
  49. How PES wants to level the playing field: European brand manager Lennart Bobzien discusses the eFootball rebrand and renewed efforts to put Konami’s football game on top
  50. Vivendi, Riot veterans announce gaming broadcast network, VENN: Ben Kusin and Ariel Horn share their plans and goals for a space that unifies publishers, leagues and audiences under one network
  51. One decade in, League of Legends still averages 8M peak concurrent players daily
  52. League of Legends hits 8 million peak concurrent players a day: Riot shares August’s daily worldwide average figures, says it’s larger than the top 10 games on Steam combined
  53. Valve launches revamped Steam Library in open beta
  54. Twitch sexual content crackdown causing confusion: Streaming site has issued multiple suspensions against streamers wearing Chun-Li costumes, sports bras and more
  55. Twitch acquires IGDB to bolster search and discoverability capabilities
  56. Twitch acquires Internet Gaming Database: Acquisition will see Twitch feed database into discovery feature set
  57. Esports: The next billion dollar industry
  58. Video: Building explosive 8-bit Nintendo eSports the Tetris World Championship way
  59. Dignitas CEO: Soccer, basketball, and esports will be the major sports of the future
  60. Esports tournament platform XY Gaming raises $2.5 million
  61. XY Gaming announces $2.5m funding round: Funds will go toward expanding esports tournament platform, adding games such as Fortnite
  62. Subnation’s ‘LVL UP’ Highlights Explosion Of Premium Content For Esports
  63. PlayVS lands another $50 million: High school esports platform details Series C funding round, brings total funding to $96 million in just over a year
  64. Hulu dropped support for Google’s Daydream VR
  65. HTC Vive Cosmos VR: We have the price, release date, and first hands-on
  66. Image courtesy Daqri: Well-funded AR Headset Startup DAQRI is Shutting Down
  67. Vive Cosmos arrives on October 3 for £699: New virtual reality headset from HTC will cost roughly the same as predecessor
  68. 2K will donate up to $500,000 to blood cancer research in WWE marketing campaign: Publisher partners with Leukemia & Lymphona Society as survivor Roman Reigns stars on the cover of this year’s wrestling game
  69. UKIE partners with Alzheimer’s Research UK for Journo/Dev Swap game jam: will be publishing the developers-turned-journalists coverage from September 27
  70. Don’t Miss: Gwent and 6 other minigames that developers should study
  71. The 57 years of unseen work that built Cyberpunk 2077’s Night City
  72. Bioware, Beamdog devs unveil Summerfall Studios
  73. Blog: Creating hit games in Dreams
  74. Blog: The difference of accessibility vs. playability in game design
  75. Blog: Historians play Assassin’s Creed Discovery Tour
  76. Blog: Why not just use thumbsticks?
  77. Kojima details the subtly social gameplay of Death Stranding
  78. Don’t Miss: How Sonic Mania’s devs made the old new (and good) again
  79. Don’t Miss: Writing Firewatch, and capturing the beauty of being alone
  80. Watch two of GreedFall’s developers discuss their new colonial RPG
  81. Where do you go from Doom?: Doom Eternal’s Marty Stratton and Hugo Martin talk about their approach to following up the successful reboot of a seminal classic
  82. Every game should copy Death Stranding’s “Very Easy Mode”
  83. Knights and Bikes TV show in the works: Peaky Blinders production company Tiger Aspect options rights for animated series based on Foam Sword game
  84. How a basement hacker transformed Donkey Kong for the Atari 2600
  85. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate wins big at the Japan Game Awards
  86. Proposed E3 revamp could turn expo into ‘fan, media, and influencer festival’
  87. E3 2020 pitch shows move towards celebrities, consumers and influencers: ESA pitch also includes 10,000 additional consumer passes for the E3 showfloor
  88. This new eco-friendly game packaging could save tonnes of plastic every year
  89. Football Manager 2020 studio swaps to recyclable packaging, wants others to do the same
  90. Billy Mitchell Threatens To Sue The Guinness World Record Folks For Removing His Records
  91. Knights and Bikes is being turned into an animated TV show
  92. U.S. Patent No. 9,364,746: System and method configured to unlock content within a videogame


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