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Tech News Roundup - 09/25/2017

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Tech Politics

Internet giants, once above the fray, on the defensive in Washington. Internet giants, including Alphabet's Google (GOOGL.O) and Facebook (FB.O), are moving to compromise on several major policy issues as they adjust to an abrupt shift in the political winds in Washington. (Reuters)

Obama tried to give Zuckerberg a wake-up call over fake news on Facebook. Nine days after Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg dismissed as "crazy" the idea that fake news on his company's social network played a key role in the U.S. election, President Barack Obama pulled the youthful tech billionaire aside and delivered what he hoped would be a wake-up call. (Washington Post)

'The New Washington': Lobbying in the Trump Era. There is a new lineup of lobbyists in Washington making deals and offering access. Nicholas Confessore, a reporter for The Times, spoke with Robert Stryk about how he has leveraged relationships in the Trump administration for political and business success. (New York Times)
How Democratic moderates in Congress hope to foster prosperity. So New Dems, tell us why this group is necessary at this point in time? (San Diego Tribune)

EU cracks down on Silicon Valley with new tax proposals. The European Union wants to raise taxes for some of the biggest U.S. tech companies, like Amazon, Google and Facebook, in an effort to open up competition to other businesses that service over 500 million EU customers. (ITI Dean Garfield Quoted, Axios)
Republican tax negotiators are targeting a corporate tax rate of 20 percent, according to two people familiar with the matter -- but there's at least one potential obstacle: President Donald Trump. (Bloomberg)
Trump, GOP to cut top rate to 35 percent. President Trump and Republican leaders plan to cut the top tax rate for the wealthiest Americans to 35 percent and dramatically reduce taxes on big and small businesses, according to details leaked to Axios. (Axios)
In Battle Over Tax Cuts, It's Republicans vs. Economists. Republican lawmakers are gearing up to battle a powerful force in the coming skirmish over a $1.5 trillion tax cut: Economists. (New York Times)

Why Big Tech Is Clashing With Internet Freedom Advocates. Everone seems to have a beef with Big Tech these days, with politicians and pundits from across the political spectrum blaming consumer technology's largest companies for everything from income inequality and wage stagnation to #fakenews and President Donald Trump. (ITI Mentioned, Wired)
Justice Department goes nuclear on Google in search warrant fight. The Justice Department is demanding that a federal judge sanction Google for failing to abide by court orders to turn over data tied to 22 e-mail accounts. "Google's conduct here amounts to a willful and contemptuous disregard of various court orders," the government wrote (PDF) in a legal filing to US District Judge Richard Seeborg of California. (Ars Technica)

Global Trade

That Queasy Feeling Down Under. Donald Trump long ago named his ambassadors to the Bahamas (the political donor Doug Manchester) and the Vatican (the political spouse Callista Gingrich). So on a trip the other day to Canberra, I asked whether the American president had nominated an emissary to this important if sleepy capital. (New York Times)
Nafta Negotiators Wading Into Tougher Territory in Third Round of Trade Talks. President Trump has spent months pummeling the North American Free Trade Agreement, calling the trade pact a "disaster" and insisting that it cost American jobs. Now, United States trade negotiators will have to decide how tough to get on their Nafta counterparts. (New York Times)

NAFTA Negotiators Prepare for Tough Bargaining in Ottawa . Round three of North American Free Trade Agreement modernization renegotiations could see fireworks in areas marked by deep divisions, such as dispute settlement and rules of origin for automobiles, private-sector sources familiar with the talks told Bloomberg BNA on background. (BNA)

Theresa May proposes minimum post-Brexit 'implementation period' of 2 years PA. The U.K. wants to continue operating under EU single market rules for at least two years after Brexit, during which time it will pay its EU budget commitments and allow freedom of movement to continue, Theresa May said in a landmark Brexit speech in Florence Friday. (Politico Pro)

Without US, 11 nations in TPP inch closer to a deal. The 11 nations remaining in the Trans-Pacific Partnership after the United States withdrew have inched closer to a comprehensive deal, offering hope that major countries can maintain free trade in the face of U.S. protectionism, a negotiator said on Friday. (Reuters)

India struggling with cross-border data dilemma; needed a permanent cure. Governance of cross-border data is a major challenge for countries as their businesses and innovators seek to combine complements in capacities to innovate for producing global products. (Financial Express)
Brexit: Jeremy Corbyn urges caution on single market. The Labour leader said EU restrictions on state aid and pressure to privatise sectors like rail could cause problems. (BBC News)

Merkel wins German vote but suffers losses, SPD to go into opposition. Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservatives came first in Germany's general election Sunday but posted their worst score in a national election since 1949 as the far right surged to third place. (Politico Pro)

Artificial Intelligence

Intel wiped out in mobile. Can this guy help it catch the AI wave?. To get a sense of computer scientist Naveen Rao, just take a look at his hands. (LA Times)

Op-Ed: Want Geniuses? Welcome Immigrants. Maybe "some are rapists," in Donald Trump's nasty words. But many are geniuses. Just ask the MacArthur Foundation, which responded to our president's frequent demonization of immigrants, including that infamous phrase, by doing a little math. (New York Times)

New Order Bars Almost All Travel From Seven Countries. President Trump on Sunday issued a new order banning almost all travel to the United States from seven countries, including most of the nations covered by his original travel ban, citing threats to national security posed by letting their citizens into the country. (New York Times)
Trump to replace travel ban with restrictions on more countries. President Donald Trump's controversial travel ban will morph into a new set of restrictions on travelers from an expanded set of countries, U.S. officials announced Sundaynight as major parts of the order were close to expiring. (Politico)

President Trump is expected to scrap his travel ban - and replace it with a country-by-country system.
President Trump is expected to scrap his travel ban - and replace it with a country-by-country system. President Donald Trump is expected to replace a travel ban that targeted immigrants and refugees from six Muslim-majority countries with a new, broader system that imposes limits on a country-by-country basis. (Recode)

Why "fake news" is an antitrust problem. Five of the world's largest companies by market capitalization are tech companies. In the past 10 years, Apple, Google, Amazon, and Facebook have all joined Microsoft at the top of the list. (Vox)
Public Sector
How GSA can make its $50B telecom contract succeed. The General Services Administration and a handful of big federal agencies need to better tune their plans to take on the federal government's next generation telecommunications contract, according to a new oversight report. (FCW)
The security aspects of modernization. IT modernization has resurfaced as a topic of conversation in the federal government in the past month. On Aug. 30, White House officials issued a draft report on the Trump administration's plan to modernize federal IT. It directs agencies to move more swiftly to the cloud, consolidate networks and prioritize the modernization of high-value, high-risk assets. (FCW)
Congressman calls for OPM oversight of agency buyouts and early retirements. Members of Congress are starting to take a greater interest in agency buyouts and early retirement offers, and they want ensure that someone else is also keeping an eye on the administration's plans to restructure the federal workforce. (Federal News Radio)

Lawmakers mulling evidence-based policymaking to help agencies tell stories with data. Amid the heated Capitol Hill debates on healthcare, tax reform and agency funding, lawmakers are actively working on legislation improving how policies are made and to learn how well federal programs work, with the help of government data. (Federal News Radio)

Pentagon sets 'aggressive' path to cloud with new steering group. A recent trip to the West Coast was very eye-opening to Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and his deputy - it made clear the Pentagon must take "aggressive" steps to embrace emerging, commercial cloud technologies to maintain military dominance. (FedScoop)


Hit by Chinese Hackers Seeking Industrial Secrets, German Manufacturers Play Defense. A wave of attacks by Chinese hackers on Germany's cutting-edge manufacturers is raising alarm in Berlin and prompting the government to step in to defend the country's competitive edge. (Wall Street Journal)


Self-Driving Truck Feud Shows Tech's Vulnerability in Jobs Debate. A Senate effort to regulate self-driving trucks is spotlighting larger concerns about the impact of artificial intelligence technologies on an array of traditional jobs. (BNA)

Push for Gender Equality in Tech? Some Men Say It's Gone Too Far. Their complaints flow on Reddit forums, on video game message boards, on private Facebook pages and across Twitter. They argue for everything from male separatism to an end to gender diversity efforts. (New York Times)


Creating Test for Trump, Panel Says Imported Solar Gear Hurts U.S. Firms. A flood of imported solar equipment has seriously hurt American companies, the International Trade Commission ruled on Friday, setting up a major test of President Trump's willingness to use the protectionist measures he endorsed during the campaign. (New York Times)

Tech Business

The Best Investment Since 1926? Apple. The iPhone helped to catapult Apple into its position as the world's most valuable publicly traded company. But now Apple has another and, arguably, more exalted stock market distinction. (New York Times)

Buzzfeed, Twitter take on traditional TV with new video tech. In a new made-for-Twitter morning show starting Monday, Buzzfeed hosts Saeed Jones and Isaac Fitzgerald will leverage the power of Twitter's new video technology to engage audiences in real time, while they are scrolling their feeds. (Axios)

One Surprise Standout for Uber: Food Delivery. For years, Bob Gordon, the owner of Footprints Cafe in Brooklyn, handled the delivery of his restaurant's meals, like his Caribbean-inspired "Rasta Pasta," to customers. (New York Times)

Alibaba and Tencent Set Fast Pace in Mobile-Payments Race. Silicon Valley is home to the world's most influential consumer-tech firms, but China's online corporate titans are way ahead in the race to build mobile-payment services in many of the world's fastest-growing consumer markets. (Wall Street Journal)

ITI Member News

Editorial: Facebook's Belated Awakening. Chastened by criticism that Facebook had turned a blind eye to Russia's manipulation of the social network to interfere in the 2016 election, the company's executives now acknowledge a need to do better and have promised to be more transparent about who is paying for political ads. That's a good start, but more is required - of Facebook, of social media giants generally and of Congress. (New York Times)
Op-Ed: Will Mark Zuckerberg 'Like' This Column?. The idea of Mark Zuckerberg running for president was always sort of scary. (New York Times)
Facebook can't hide behind algorithms. First, the company admitted a "fail" when its advertising algorithm allowed for the targeting of anti-Semitic users. (BBC News)

Facebook Drops Stock Reclassification That Would Have Solidified Zuckerberg's Control. Facebook said Friday that it would drop a proposed reclassification of its stock that would have solidified Mark Zuckerberg's control over the social network, in a victory for shareholders in a class-action lawsuit against the social giant. (New York Times)
Why regulating Google and Facebook like utilities is a long shot. In 2009, a radio host asked Google's Eric Schmidt whether there might come a point when Google should be treated like a utility. The audience laughed at the idea. Fewer are laughing now - but that doesn't mean it'll actually happen. (Axios) Inc.'s investment in retailer Shoppers Stop Ltd. will help the Indian company boost revenue and add 25 percent more stores, while the U.S. firm expands its reach into smaller towns in the world's second-most populated nation. (Bloomberg)

The new TV season has started. Here's why Facebook and Google and Amazon (and you) care.. The fall TV season kicks off in earnest this week, and looking at it from the vantage of Netflix bingeing and Instagram Stories and moving GIFs and Twitter feuds, the fanfare around the latest sitcom to hit the airwaves feels shopworn, like staging a neighborhood singalong down the street from a Chance the Rapper show. (Recode)

Today on the Hill

Today, the House will meet at 12:00 p.m. for morning hour and 2:00 p.m. for legislative business. Votes will be postponed until 6:30 p.m.

The Senate will convene at 4:00 p.m. and proceed to executive session to resume consideration of the nomination of William J. Emanuel to be a Member of the National Labor Relations Board.
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