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Tech News Roundup - 09/18/2017

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Inside the new battle against Google. One of the biggest, most embarrassing divorces in the normally quiet world of Washington think tanks blew into the open earlier this month, when writer Barry Lynn and nine others defected from New America. (Politico)

How Democrats Can Wage War on Monopolies-and Win. A little more than a decade ago, I attended an advance screening of Maxed Out, a documentary about the boom market in predatory consumer-lending practices, exposed through the stories of unsuspecting victims. (New Republic)

Gab, a social media site favored by the so-called alt-right as an alternative to Twitter, has filed an antitrust lawsuit against Google for booting it from the Play Store. (The Hill)

Tech Politics

Tech Firms Find Washington Isn't So Hands-Off Anymore. New scrutiny by Congress of Facebook Inc.FB 0.36% over its acceptance of Russian ad buys in the 2016 campaign is just the latest in a string of political challenges facing technology firms, which long enjoyed a hands-off approach from Washington aimed at fostering their growth. (Wall Street Journal)

Global Trade

EU-U.S. data pact faces first major test of credibility. A pact underpinning billions of dollars of transatlantic data transfers will undergo its first annual review on Monday, with Europe seeking to ensure Washington has lived up to its promises to protect the data of European citizens stored on U.S. servers. (Reuters)

WTO members at odds with U.S. over appellate body concerns. The United States stands largely alone in its bid to stall the search for new appellate body members at the World Trade Organization until its concerns on a separate issue are addressed, according to the proceedings at a dispute settlement body meeting Friday. (Politico Pro)

The missing trade war against China's digital protectionism. Earlier this summer, the Trump administration took its first concrete step toward what some think could turn into an all-out trade war with China. (Engadget)
Trump taps three more nominees for empty Ex-Im board. President Donald Trump on Friday nominated three supporters of the Export-Import Bank to fill empty slots on the bank's board of directors, raising the possibility it could soon have a quorum to approve deals worth more than $10 million. (Politico Pro)

UN warning on growing digital 'chasm'. The divide has grown thanks to accelerating net connection speeds in developed nations and static ones elsewhere, it said. (BBC News)

British lawmakers seek clarity on cross-border pensions after Brexit. British lawmakers on Monday urged the government to address the status of cross-border pensions and insurance contracts after Brexit, saying time to make changes ensuring people continued to be paid was running out. (Reuters)

White House: DACA is not amnesty. The White House argued Friday that the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program is not "amnesty," pushing back against some concerns that President Trump's willingness to make a deal contradicts conservative values. (The Hill)

Trump warns lawmakers against allowing for chain migration. President Donald Trump suggested today that he will not sign any immigration bill that would set the stage for chain immigration. (Politico Pro)
The White House plans to lay out its "specific priorities and principles" for an immigration deal in the next seven to 10 days, press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Friday. (Politico Pro)

Eric Cantor offering advice to end 'immigration wars'. Former House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) called for a middle-of-the-road approach to comprehensive immigration reform on Sunday, as the future of the Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program hangs in the balance. (The Hill)

Increasingly, foreign students are choosing Canada over US. Melanie Backal grew up in the bustling capital city of Bogota, Colombia, but for college she wanted to try something new. Her parents told her she would have a chance at a better future if she went to school abroad, and she agreed. She wanted to apply to Harvard. (Boston Globe)


Smartwatches, CCTV cameras come under govt scanner over quality standards. New Delhi: The ministry of electronics and information technology (Meity) has placed smart watches and CCTV cameras under its scanner in a bid to stem the flow of sub-standard and unsafe electronic goods into India. (ITI Josh Rosenberg Quoted, LiveMint)


Closely watched California Internet privacy bill dies in final minutes of legislative session. California lawmakers on Saturday shelved a bill that would have required Internet service providers such as Verizon, Comcast and AT&T to get permission from customers before using, selling or allowing access to their browser history. (LA Times)
ISPs can keep sharing your browsing history after California no-vote. California state lawmakers ended their legislative session yesterday without enacting privacy protections for broadband customers after the proposed rule drew opposition from Internet service providers and advertisers. (Ars Technica)


Trump Administration Seeks to Avoid Withdrawal From Paris Climate Accord, International Climate Officials Say. Trump administration officials said Saturday the U.S. wouldn't pull out of the Paris Agreement, offering to re-engage in the international deal to fight climate change, according to multiple officials at a global warming summit. (Wall Street Journal)

Trump Administration Poised to Clarify Climate Policy. President Donald Trump's top economic adviser is expected to brief major international partners Monday on the administration's stance on the Paris climate accord, White House officials said, following signals over the weekend that the U.S. was exploring ways to remain in the 2015 pact. (Wall Street Journal)

Internet of Things

U.S. push for self-driving law exposes regulatory divide. As the U.S. Congress moves quickly to pass the first federal law governing self-driving cars, some state and city officials are pushing back over fears that the measure will limit their ability to regulate vehicle safety at the local level. (Reuters)


Robots: Is your job at risk?. Today, a debate rages over workers and whether we too may become obsolete as society becomes automated. (CNN)

Raising Wages to Help Workers Could Actually Help Robots Replace Them. Unions and pro-labor groups around the world campaign for higher minimum wages and stronger job-protection laws. (Wired)

Nikon Picked 32 Photographers to Promote a Camera. All 32 Were Men.To promote a new camera, Nikon enlisted 32 photographers from Asia, Africa and the Middle East to try it out and tell their stories on the company's website. (New York Times)
SoFi Board Says C.E.O. Is Out Immediately Amid Sexual Harassment Scandal. Social Finance, a privately held online lender and technology start-up, said on Friday that Mike Cagney would step down immediately as chief executive, accelerating a departure announced this week amid a sexual harassment scandal. (New York Times)

Tech Companies Are Recruiting Female STEM Majors at an Awkward Time. Devshi Mehrotra couldn't speak highly enough of her three-month internship with Google's artificial intelligence project, Google Brain, this summer. (Bloomberg)

Has Anything Really Changed for Women in Tech?. Just five years ago, I sued Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, the venture capital firm in Silicon Valley where I had worked since 2005, for bias and gender discrimination. (New York Times)

Public Sector

Rethink the whole federal security clearance process, says industry observer. Working as an investigator for OPM's National Background Investigations Bureau (NBIB) must seem like looking for a light at the end of tunnel. (Trey Hodgkins Quoted, Federal News Radio)

Trio of DARPA procurements plan for 'post-Moore's Law' world. Since the onset of the microcomputer revolution in the 1960s, global economic and technological progress has been largely fueled by regular, exponential leaps in computing power. With each passing year, computer chips have halved in size while doubling their processing power. (FCW)

Fate of MGT unclear as Senate revs up to pass NDAA. The Modernizing Government Technology Act's ride as an amendment the National Defense Authorization Act may get cut short. (FCW)

CIO Council to host governmentwide tech recruiting event. It's no secret the federal government has a hard time attracting talented young professionals, especially to high-demand tech and cybersecurity jobs. (FCW)

NGA wants to swap years of government data for industry know-how. The National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency is in talks with Capitol Hill to find legal ways to achieve a unique barter agreement between the government and industry: swapping potentially years' worth of data locked in the agency's archives for expertise and new computational techniques from the private sector. (Federal News Radio)

OPEN Government Data Act sees a clear path through Congress as part of NDAA. In yet another example of how attaching legislation to a big defense spending bill can be seen as a surefire route to law, the Open, Public, Electronic and Necessary (OPEN) Government Data Act has been added to a group of amendments attached to the 2018 National Defense Authorization Act. (FedScoop)


10 EU nations back new plan to tax digital giants. EU finance ministers from 10 countries on Saturday threw their weight behind a plan to start taxing the revenues of digital giants like Google, Amazon and Facebook, which have been accused of paying minimal tax to their treasuries. (Politico Pro)

European Union finance ministers on Saturday expressed cautious support to pursue new tax rules for technology giants like AlphabetInc.'s Google and Facebook Inc., though they stressed it would be necessary to find a permanent, global solution that includes the U.S. (Wall Street Journal)

European Union finance ministers are looking to create a tax on digital companies such as Inc. and Facebook Inc. to raise money from an industry that they say provides less than it should to public coffers. (Bloomberg)

House, Senate Tax Proposals Likely to Diverge. The House and Senate versions of a plan to overhaul the nation's tax code are likely to diverge on many issues, including the treatment of business interest expenses and their write-offs for investments. (Wall Street Journal)

Tax cuts quiet once-deafening GOP call for fiscal discipline. Republicans spooked world markets in their ardor to cut spending when Democrat Barack Obama was in the White House. Now, with Republican President Donald Trump pressing for politically popular tax cuts and billions more for the military, few in the GOP are complaining about the nation's soaring debt. (AP)

Artificial Intelligence

Facebook to Open New Artificial Intelligence Lab in Montreal. Facebook Inc. is opening its first artificial intelligence research lab in Canada and has chosen Montreal to house the project. (Bloomberg)

Chips Off the Old Block: Computers Are Taking Design Cues From Human. We expect a lot from our computers these days. They should talk to us, recognize everything from faces to flowers, and maybe soon do the driving. (New York Times)
Artificial intelligence pioneer says we need to start over. In 1986, Geoffrey Hinton co-authored a paper that, four decades later, is central to the explosion of artificial intelligence. But Hinton says his breakthrough method should be dispensed with, and a new path to AI found. (Quartz)

Tech Business
Ranting and Rapping Online in China, and Raking In Millions. He delivers rants about unfaithful girlfriends, sky-high housing prices and spoiled young people. He films himself spinning on his head and doing push-ups at the gym. He sings about love and desperation and shouts like a military sergeant. (New York Times)

ITI Member News

Fearing Anti-Semitic Speech, Facebook Limits Audience Targeting. Facebook has said it will restrict how advertisers target their audiences on the social network after a report said some were able to seek out self-described "Jew haters." (New York Times)
For Amazon, Can Two Headquarters Still Equal One Culture?. In planning Inc.'s AMZN -0.61% second headquarters, Chief Executive Jeff Bezos faces a new challenge: how to maintain the online retail giant's carefully cultivated culture when he can't be in two places at once. (Wall Street journal)
Serving the Community, Working for Microsoft.
I work in our Troy store creating events and programs to benefit the community. (New York Times)
New York Wants New Amazon HQ, Says City Beats the Suburbs. New York City is officially throwing its hat in the ring to lure Inc.'s proposed second headquarters, hoping a large, diverse workforce, extensive university system, big-city living and status as an epicenter of industry will overcome its major drawback as one of the country's most expensive housing markets. (Bloomberg)

What Facebook is thinking. Facebook - once the darling of Silicon Valley, America and the world - is feeling rising heat and scrutiny everywhere it reaches. (Axios)
Facebook fights fake news with guidelines for monetizing content. Facebook said on Wednesday it would introduce tougher rules on who can make money from advertising on its network, responding to criticism that it makes it too easy for providers of fake news and sensational headlines to cash in. (Reuters)

Today on the Hill

The House is not in session.
The Senate stands adjourned until 3:00pm on Monday, September 18, 2017. Following leader remarks, the Senate will resume consideration of H.R.2810, National Defense Authorization Act. At 5:30pm, the McCain amendment #545 will be withdrawn, the Senate will adopt the McCain-Reed substitute amendment #1003, as modified, and vote on the motion to invoke cloture on H.R.2810, NDAA. If cloture is invoked, all post-cloture time will be considered expired and the Senate will vote on passage of the bill, as amended.
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