News of the Week; October 14, 2020

COMMUNICATIONS

  1. The Guilbeault Internet Plan: Leave it to the CRTC and Copyright Board of Canada to Get Money from Web Giants (Michael Geist)
  2. AT&T plans thousands of layoffs at HBO, Warner Bros., rest of WarnerMedia
  3. AT&T Is Taking An Absolute Bath On Its DirecTV Merger
  4. With 42,000 Layoffs Since 2017, AT&T Plans Thousands More Layoffs At HBO, Time Warner
  5. AT&T has trouble figuring out where it offers government-funded Internet
  6. AT&T Gives Up On DSL, Leaving Many Out Of Broadband’s Reach
  7. As COVID Highlights U.S. Broadband Failures, State Bans On Community Broadband Look Dumber Than Ever
  8. Comcast says gigabit downloads and uploads are now possible over cable 
  9. Successful 5G implementation
  10. Verizon “nationwide” 5G ready for iPhone 12—don’t expect a big speed boost
  11. Verizon forced to pull ad that claimed firefighters need Verizon 5G
  12. SpaceX gets FCC approval to bid in $16 billion rural-broadband auction 
  13. FCC’s Pai Puts Final Bullet In Net Neutrality Ahead Of Potential Demotion
  14. Access to Infrastructure: using existing ducts and pipes to install new fibre broadband

DIGITAL

  1. Facebook and the Group That Planned to Kidnap Gretchen Whitmer: Extremist groups and conspiracy theorists like to connect with each other just like everyone else.
  2. Facebook Doesn’t Have a Duty to Prevent a Murder–Godwin v. Facebook (Eric  Goldman)
  3. Twitter, Facebook face blowback after stopping circulation of NY Post story
  4. Court Says Twitter Must Unmask User Whose Bogus Document Jumpstarted Seth Rich Conspiracy Theory
  5. Twitter Attempts To Add A Bit Of Friction In Run Up To The Election
  6. Facebook bans Holocaust denial amid rapid rise in “deceptive” content
  7. Facebook to pause all political advertising—after the election
  8. Facebook Will Temporarily Ban All Political and Issue Advertising After the Presidential Election
  9. Facebook Abuses Trademark To Give New Prominence To Group Of Facebook Critics Who Are Trying To Shame Company Into More Moderation
  10. Facebook Bans Marketing Firm for Engaging in “Coordinated Inauthentic Behavior”
  11. Facebook announces ban on anti-vaccination ads
  12. How Not to Cover Voter Fraud Disinformation: Journalists should treat systematic disinformation campaigns from President Trump no differently than from Russian propagandists and Facebook clickbait artists (Yochai Benkler)
  13. China Micro-Censors The VP Debate In The Most Hamfisted Way
  14. Wisconsin blames Foxconn, says $3 billion factory deal is off
  15. Democracy & Dragons
  16. Against Platform Determinism
  17. Trolling for Truth on Social Media
  18. EU targets Big Tech with “hit list” facing tougher rules
  19. Forget TikTok. IRS Inquiry Shows The Continued Abuse Of Location Data Is The Real Scandal.
  20. WeChat and TikTok Win Preliminary Injunctions Against Trump Administration’s Efforts to Ban the Apps
  21. DOJ Seizes Domains, Claiming They Pushed Iranian Disinformation; Should Raise 1st Amendment Concerns
  22. While Trump Continues To Complain About 230, It’s Copyright Law That Once Again Actually Gets His Content Removed
  23. League Of California Cities Want Congress To Change Section 230… To Let Cops Spy On Everyone Using Social Media
  24. Section 230 Liability Shield Continues to Receive Scrutiny
  25. Clarence Thomas Doesn’t Like Section 230, Adding To His Anti-Free Speech Legacy
  26. Content Moderation Case Study: Facebook’s Internal ‘Hate Speech’ Guidelines Appear To Leave Protected Groups Unprotected (June 2017)
  27. Content Moderation Case Study: Handling Off Platform Harassment On Platform (June 2020)
  28. Assessment of the Code of Practice on Disinformation
  29. YouTube Expands COVID Misinformation Policy To Ban Vaccine Conspiracies
  30. Google wants to turn YouTube into QVC with new shopping features
  31. Can You Avoid Creator Burnout By Working The YouTube Algorithm? Is More Actually Less? We Take A Look.
  32. YouTube Unveils First 5 Originals Produced By Its $100 Million ‘Black Voices’ Fund
  33. YouTube Gives Premium Subscribers Exclusive Access To Test New Features
  34. YouTube Testing Ecommerce Tools That Turn Creator Videos Into Product Catalogs
  35. Top 50 Most Viewed US YouTube Channels • Week Of 10/05/2020
  36. Top 50 Most Viewed US YouTube Channels • Week Of 10/12/2020
  37. Top 50 Most Viewed YouTube Channels Worldwide • Week Of 10/05/2020
  38. Top 50 Most Viewed YouTube Channels Worldwide • Week Of 10/12/2020
  39. F-Factor CEO Sues Influencer Alleging Defamation and More
  40. France Passes Law Giving Child Influencers Same Protections As Young Actors, Models
  41. Teespring Will Now Let Creators Vend ‘Digital Products’, Like Photo Presets And Ebooks
  42. Reels Rolls Out New Content Discovery, Sharing Features
  43. Twitter Disables Core Functions To Prevent Spread Of Election Misinformation
  44. Twitter Wins Another Account Suspension Case–Wilson v. Twitter (Eric Goldman)
  45. Joe Biden Taps Portal A For #ImVotingFor Influencer Campaign On Instagram, Twitter
  46. Twitter Will Turn Off Some Features to Fight Election Misinformation
  47. Logan Paul’s Pokemon Card Unboxing Stream Gets 300,000 Concurrent Viewers, Raises $130,000 For Charity
  48. Facebook Unveils Free Tool Enabling Creators To Test Video Post Performance Before Publishing
  49. Spotify Now Lets Podcasters Use Its Entire Music Library In Their Shows
  50. Brooklyn-Based Startup MSCHF Wants To Pay Influencers To Take Down “Evil” Brands
  51. IBM to split into two companies by end of 2021
  52. Insights: Could The Streaming Services Killing Movie Theaters Save Them Instead?
  53. Netflix Nixes Free Trials In U.S.
  54. Following Staff Exodus, Bon Appetit Relaunches YouTube Channel With 8 New And 3 Returning Hosts
  55. Apple pays $288,000 to white-hat hackers who had run of company’s network
  56. Microsoft thumbs its nose at Apple with new “app fairness” policy
  57. Coordinating office space: Digital technologies and the platformization of work
  58. Targeting Ontological Security: Information Warfare in the Modern Age
  59. The pernicious contagion of misinformation: False statements – about Covid-19 and so much else – spread like a virus online. Scientists should study them like one.
  60. Another Significant Cryptocurrency Decision: SEC v. Kik Interactive Inc. and Token Offerings Under the Securities Laws
  61. New Export Controls: Emerging Technologies
  62. A Lawyer’s Duty of Technological Competence
  63. How Linus Torvalds Invented Today’s Work From Home Paradigm In 1991

A.I.

  1.  Waymo finally launches an actual public, driverless taxi service
  2. Trustworthy artificial intelligence 
  3. Are we being too hard on HAL? Some thoughts on the legal need for “explainable” artificial intelligence.
  4. Artificial Intelligence: the key to successful decommissioning in the North Sea? 
  5. The Losers of automation. How the introduction of robotics changed the European occupational class structure 
  6. To Surveil and Predict: A Human Rights Analysis of Algorithmic Policing in Canada 
  7. Smart cities | How AI is boosting understanding of urban dynamics 
  8. Human oversight, individual rights and AI systems in the workplace in the UK
  9. Behavior trees and the future of intelligent control 

INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY

  1. Google gets mixed reception in Supreme Court clash with Oracle: Justices held a low-tech telephone session in one of the biggest software fights in American history on Wednesday
  2. Google’s Supreme Court faceoff with Oracle was a disaster for Google 
  3. IP Alert | Supreme Court Hears Arguments in “Copyright Case of the Century” 
  4. hiQ Labs v. LinkedIn Corp., the Web Scraping Saga Continues
  5. 512(f) Claim Survives Motion to Dismiss–Brandyn Love v. Nuclear Blast America (Eric Goldman) 
  6. By the Book: Unauthorized Material Doesn’t Forfeit Training Guide’s Copyright Protection 
  7. Graffiti artists see victory under Visual Artists Rights Act claim 
  8. Nicki Minaj’s Experimentation with Tracy Chapman’s Classic “Baby Can I Hold You” Qualifies as a Fair Use Under Copyright 
  9. “Can’t Hold Us” Liable: Macklemore & Ryan Lewis Win Affirmance in Copyright Suit
  10. Obtaining Copyright Registrations for Blogs and Social Media Posts Just Got Easier 
  11. Kanye’s Twitter Rant Flags Issues with Copyright Ownership in Music Deals 
  12. Lehman Brothers is Gone but Not Abandoned
  13. EU: What does Brexit mean for EU trade marks and designs? 
  14. Versace ripped off the Canucks’ spaghetti-skate logo
  15. Depreciation of goodwill with cannabis trademarks 
  16. Dior loses PRETTY SAVAGE trade mark dispute in the United Kingdom
  17. If Something Is Advertised As A Knockoff Product… Is It No Longer Counterfeiting?
  18. Court of Appeal Upholds Interim Injunction in Trade Secrets Case
  19. How to Keep Trade Secrets Secret 
  20. Court Finds that Trade “Secrets” Aren’t Secret on Zoom Call 
  21. $644-million award for patent infringement upheld on appeal; Accounting of profits remedy removes “economic incentive to infringe”
  22. IP monitor: Quebec Superior Court dismisses application for disavowal of a IP monitor – Quebec Superior Court dismisses application for disavowal of admissions of patent invalidity 
  23. Federal Court Freezes Out Motion to Vary Injunction in Patent Case
  24. US Patent Boss Says No Evidence Of Patents Holding Back COVID Treatments, Days Before Pharma Firms Prove He’s Wrong
  25. Beyond borders: Extraterritorial reach of Australian patents
  26. Skinny Label Does Not Prevent Finding of Induced Infringement 
  27. New Grape Varieties – Raisin Awareness of Plant Patents 
  28. In Memory of Guitarist Eddie Van Halen; 10 Musical Patents You Should Know: The Saxophone, Electric Guitar, Electric Double Bass, Concertina and “Band in a Box” – Who Invented These Musical Instruments? 
  29. Promoting the Progress of Science: Written Description and Enablement 
  30. High Stakes: Protecting Your Cannabis Intellectual Property 
  31. 2020 Supreme Court Intellectual Property Case Review

PRIVACY

  1. Canada’s New Cybersecurity Certification Goes Live
  2. Undocumented backdoor that covertly takes snapshots found in kids’ smartwatch: The X4, made and jointly developed in China, raises concerns.
  3. Law Enforcement Also Using ‘Reverse’ Warrants To Obtain Google Searches
  4. FBI Sent A Special Task Force To Portland To ‘Exploit’ Phones Taken From Protesters
  5. Now you can enforce your privacy rights with a single browser tick
  6. United States: California Privacy Rights Act – what you need to know
  7. Five Eyes Countries Band Together To Complain About Facebook And End-To-End Encryption
  8. Schrems II Series: United States Defence
  9. Schrems II – what next for data transfers? 
  10. Office of Foreign Assets Control: Making or Facilitating Ransomware Payments May Violate U.S. Sanctions 

CREATIVITY

  1. Administration Officials (Again) Break The Law By Investigating Voice Of America Journalist For ‘Anti-Trump Bias’
  2. Devin Nunes Asks Appeals Court To Invalidate Bedrock Supreme Court 1st Amendment Ruling
  3. ICE Spent Your Tax Dollars Dragging A Journalist Through The Internet Sewer Over A Mistake She Apologized For
  4. Federal Judge Ridiculously Says That Holding A Sign Telling People Cops Are Ahead Is Not Free Speech

GAMES

  1. Professional Splatoon player arrested for alleged sexual assault of a minor: Japanese esports organization Creatives parts ways with player
  2. Console hackers are shocked after DOJ arrests prominent mod-chip makers
  3. Blizzard workers in France called to strike over closure of Versailles office
  4. Nintendo forces rebranding for adult entertainer “Pokeprincxss”
  5. Nintendo issues cease and desist against influencer and adult entertainer Pokeprincxss: Social media personality rebrands after trademarking her name and selling merchandise bearing Pokémon characters
  6. From Game Boy to 3DS: The legacy of Nintendo’s handhelds: Analysts, developers and former Nintendo staff look back at the why the platform holder dominated the portable gaming space for over three decades
  7. Judge denies request to force Fortnite back on iOS App Store pending trial
  8. Apple Does Not Need to Return Fortnite to App Store, Judge Rules: Fortnite’s parent company, Epic Games, had broken its contract with Apple, a federal judge found. The case goes to trial next year.
  9. Epic Games vs Apple trial set for May 2021: It’s uncertain at this stage whether the trial will be conducted in person or virtually
  10. Epic vs. Apple judge warns of ‘serious ramifications’ for console makers
  11. Epic vs Apple case may have “serious ramifications” for Nintendo, PlayStation and Xbox: Court order prevents Apple from blocking Unreal Engine until dispute is settled but Fortnite remains banned on iOS
  12. Xbox Elite Series 2 added to Microsoft controller drift lawsuit: The updated lawsuit also shed light on what’s allegedly causing the drift
  13. DiRT 5 and our first Xbox Series X “enhanced” tests: 120Hz saves the uneven ride
  14. UK regulator bans misleading Homescapes, Gardenscapes pin puzzle ads
  15. Game Over With Hefty Fine in Gaming Patent Clash
  16. Hyper casual developer Voodoo wins copycat case against Zynga’s Rollic Games
  17. ASA bans misleading Homescapes, Gardenscapes ads: Despite pin puzzles being present in the game, UK ad authority concluded Facebook posts were not representative of the overall gameplay
  18. Amazon cancels free-to-play shooter Crucible
  19. RIP to Crucible, Amazon Games’ first PC shooter: 2020-2020
  20. Amazon ends Crucible development for good: Servers will shut down on November 9, just over five months after launch
  21. Gaming will be a frontline in China’s censorship drive | Opinion: China’s censorious tendencies have begun to creep overseas through commercial pressure, and games companies are in the authorities’ sights
  22. Staff say Twitch has a chronic problem with racism, sexism, and indifference
  23. Twitch staff call the company out on sexual assault, racism, more: Employees from throughout the streaming platform’s history describe a culture of indifference to inappropriate, unsafe, and abusive behavior
  24. How Twitch failed to create a safe space for staff and streamers | Podcast: Latest episode delves deeper into the stories of sexual assault and racism at the company behind the leading streaming site
  25. Following His Grand Return To Twitch, Ninja Signs With CAA
  26. Rooster Teeth’s Ryan Haywood and Adam Kovic let go amid ‘explicit photos’ scandal: The Achievement Hunter and Funhaus hosts reportedly sent inappropriate unsolicited photos to fans
  27. Retaining and fostering women in the games industry: Victoria Setian gave a GDC Summer talk addressing how to fight discriminatory attitudes in the workplace and develop female talent into leadership
  28. Normalizing depression in the games industry: Chris Charla, Mike Wilson, and Callum Underwood talk about their own struggles with depression, what’s worked for them, and changing attitudes within the industry
  29. Successful indie devs on coping with failure, imposter syndrome
  30. UK National Videogame Museum awarded grant to ensure its short-term survival
  31. Survey: 35% of gamers have a subscription service – 9% of current subscribers already pay for multiple gaming services while 71% would consider multiple subs, according to global poll of 13,000+ consumers
  32. Report: Microsoft will deploy browser workaround to bring Game Pass to iOS
  33. Microsoft exploring browser workaround to bring Xbox Game Pass to iOS: Meanwhile, former App Store boss says Apple Arcade violates the same policies blocking Game Pass and Stadia
  34. Here’s how backwards compatible titles will look on the Xbox Series S and X
  35. Report: Xbox game streaming will land on iOS in 2021 using Web workaround
  36. Xbox Game Studios has a record year heading into console launch
  37. New Microsoft Store principles take a dig at Apple: Company also explains why it will not apply these app fairness principles to Xbox store
  38. 72% of US next-gen pre-order customers chose PS5: 29% of the respondents to a VGM study said they tried to pre-order a next-gen console but were not able to do so
  39. PlayStation 5 will only leave 10 old PS4 games in the back-compat dust
  40. Sony details limits of PS5 backward compatibility: 10 PS4 titles including Hitman Go and Afro Samurai 2 will not play on PS5, while new PS5 HD Camera won’t work in place of PS4’s PlayStation Camera
  41. Apple touts the new iPhone 12 and its 5G as a game changer for mobile games
  42. Analyst predicts Switch will outsell PS5, Xbox Series X/S this Christmas: NPD’s Mat Piscatella also says US games spending could be on course for a record year at over $50 billion
  43. Nintendo reducing price of individual Joy-Cons in Japan: No word yet on whether price drop will be reflected in other markets
  44. FIFA 21 | Critical Consensus: The new FIFA has the lowest Metacritic average in the series’ history — but does a game with a license to print money have any reason to evolve?
  45. FIFA physical sales continue to fall sharply | UK Boxed Charts: But digital will likely tell a different story
  46. Celebrity endorsement? How did Burger King’s sponsorship of Stevenage F.C. lead to Lionel Messi appearing in a Burger King-branded football shirt?
  47. Star Wars Squadrons stays on target to beat Crash Bandicoot | UK Digital Charts: EA’s flight shooter does significantly better as a digital release
  48. Super Mario 3D All-Stars dominates September, even without digital | GSD Monthly Chart: Nintendo Switch consoles continue to sell well across Europe
  49. Super Mario 3D All-Stars was Japan’s biggest-selling game in September: Nintendo compilation sold nearly five times more copies than Marvel’s Avengers
  50. Mario Kart Live is a fun, if flawed, excuse to race around the house
  51. Roblox quietly submits draft registration for proposed public offering
  52. Virtuos acquires CounterPunch Studios and opens Montreal branch
  53. Virtuos acquires CounterPunch Studios, opens Montreal studio: Los Angeles animation specialist will be integrated into Virtuos’ global team while new Canadian team will focus on concept art
  54. Embracer Group issues new shares to raise money for future acquisitions: Company completes issue of shares worth over $648 million
  55. My.Games buys controlling stake in mobile studio Deus Craft for $49.1M
  56. My.Games buys a controlling stake in Deus Craft: Deal for the Grand Hotel Mania could rise from $14m to $49m based on earnout targets
  57. MyGames buys minority stake in hyper-casual studio Mamboo Games
  58. My.Games buys minority stake in Mamboo Games: Partnership enables Russia-based games publisher to expand hypercasual department
  59. Level-5 has virtually halted operations in North America
  60. Beamable, once known as Disruptor Beam, files for bankruptcy
  61. Beamable files for bankruptcy: The studio formerly known as Disruptor Beam reported $3.4 million in liabilities
  62. Nag Studios raises $1m in pre-seed funding: Stockholm-based company to grow its team as it works to build a “digital super bowl”
  63. Unknown number of layoffs at GameSpot following Red Ventures deal
  64. Rockstar buys Ruffian Games, rebrands to Rockstar Dundee: Companies have been working together on unspecified titles for the last year
  65. 505 Games officially ends production on Indivisible: Publisher will release final Switch update following dissolution of Lab Zero Games
  66. Com2us buys Out of the Park Developments: South Korean development and publishing company plans to turn historically PC franchise into a mobile one
  67. Crackdown 2 dev Ruffian Games is now a Rockstar Games studio
  68. Report: Ni No Kuni dev Level-5 winds down North American presence
  69. Unity launches Game Growth Program to help indie mobile devs flourish
  70. Kids vs. Zombies dev Donut Lab raises $1.6 million
  71. Russian mobile studio Donut Lab raises $1.6 million: Level-Up leads funding round to support upcoming game Kids vs Zombies
  72. Voodoo to release mobile games in China through The9: Shanghai-based firm has received licenses to release two of the French developer’s games so far
  73. Tencent proceeds with Huya and DouYu merger: The agreement is expected to close during the first half of 2021
  74. Tencent-owned Sharkmob opens triple-A studio in London
  75. 10mg: invading Steam with microgames to make a point
  76. The weirdest Steam refund messages (& lessons for game devs!)
  77. YouTube Newcomer Overwatch League Brings Record 1.55 Million Viewers For 2020 Grand Finals
  78. Esports March On: Nike Jumps In With Glitzy Ad While Forbes Ponders If Esports Will Be Our New Pastime
  79. Esports organisation RektGlobal secures $35m in funding: Summit Partners invests into firm as new debt capital partner
  80. Nag Studios nets $1 million to create esports games
  81. Honour of Kings professional league welcomes first all-female team: Fire Leopard will compete in the King G-League starting next year
  82. Gfinity begins formal sales process: A “formal sales process” is underway following a difficult year for the UK esports firm
  83. Newzoo reduces its esports market forecast for 2020 for the third time: Firm attributes revision to lack of in-person attendance at esports events due to ongoing pandemic
  84. How to get on the good side of media & streamers
  85. How Arthurian tragedy drives the design of Pendragon
  86. How pinball made us better RPG developers — and vice versa: Zen Studios COO Mel Kirk on what the pinball specialist learned by leaving its comfort zone with two RPG titles
  87. An in-depth analysis of IAP pack design in free-to-play mobile games
  88. Early Among Us character concepts depict the birth of the bean
  89. Still There examines how far one can run from grief | Why I Love
  90. Don’t Miss: The Door Problem of Combat Design
  91. Don’t Miss: The making of Crackdown 2
  92. Don’t Miss: How Playground imports real skies into Forza Horizon
  93. Don’t Miss: How Brawlhalla built a fighting game community from the ground up
  94. Video: Facing down failure as a freelancing game dev
  95. Video: Game art remastered – From Crash, to Kerrigan, to Corley Motors
  96. Video: Bridging the gap between UX and game design
  97. Video: An accessibility Q&A with EA’s Karen Stevens
  98. Blog: Game composers and the importance of themes – Part 5
  99. Blog: How do you know when you need ray-tracing?
  100. Blog: How to Judge Game Design With Achievement Analytics

Jon

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