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Tech News Roundup - 02/22/2018

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Key Issues

Tech Politics
House expected to vote on trafficking bill that worries tech. The House is expected to vote next week on anti-trafficking legislation that has represented a major fight for tech companies over the last year, according to multiple sources familiar with the matter. (Axios)
Mark Zuckerberg says he wants to fix Facebook. His employees keep getting in the way. Mark Zuckerberg has mandated wholesale change at Facebook after a year during which the company was rocked by Russian meddling, fake news and controversies over its role in a democracy. (Washington Post)

As Washington Gears Up To Tackle Foreign Influence, How Effective Can It Be? America's top spies say to expect more interference in the 2018 elections, but politicians may not have much defense against one of the most potent weapons - their own inboxes. (NPR)

Global Trade

White House Reaches Out to Labor Unions on Trade Policy. Leaders of AFL-CIO, other unions sit down with Trump. (Wall Street Journal)
Mexico's labor standards no obstacle to NAFTA deal: Mexican minister. Tensions over Mexico's labor standards will not prevent the signatories to the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA)from reaching an accord to overhaul the deal, the country's labor minister said on Wednesday. (Reuters)


Dreamers' Fate Is Now Tied to Border Wall and Other G.O.P. Immigration Demands. Lawmakers have until March 5 to extend legal protections for Dreamers, the undocumented immigrants who were brought to the United States as children. But the battle over their fate has expanded to include other potential changes to the nation's immigration system, and lawmakers have not come to a consensus. (New York Times)
Under Trump, Border Patrol Steps Up Searches Far From the Border. Border Patrol officers are working without permission on private property and setting up checkpoints up to 100 miles away from the border under a little-known federal law that is being used more widely in the Trump administration's aggressive crackdown on illegal immigration. (New York Times)

Artificial Intelligence

The Pentagon wants your help analyzing satellite images. On a trip to Silicon Valley last year, Defense Secretary James Mattis openly envied tech companies' superior use of artificial intelligence technology. (Wired)
To Give A.I. the Gift of Gab, Silicon Valley Needs to Offend You. Let loose on the internet nearly two years ago, Tay was an experimental system built by Microsoft. (New York Times)
Good News: A.I. Is Getting Cheaper. That's Also Bad News. On Tuesday, a group of artificial intelligence researchers and policymakers from prominent labs and think tanks in both the United States and Britain released a report that described how rapidly evolving and increasingly affordable A.I. technologies could be used for malicious purposes. (New York Times)
Nobody Wants to Let Google Win the War for Maps All Over Again. Self-driving cars need painfully detailed data on every inch of street. Can automakers solve the problem without the reigning superpower of maps? (Bloomberg)

Tinyclues, the AI-driven campaign marketing solution, scores $18M Series B. Tinyclues, the French startup that offers an intelligent campaign marketing solution that uses AI to help push the right products to the right customers, has closed $18 million in Series B investment. Leading the round is EQT Ventures, with participation from existing backers Alven, Elaia Partners, and ISAI. (Tech Crunch)
Public Sector

OMB wants innovation acquisition. Top procurement officials are sending a new message to agencies: Acquisition innovation isn't just "nice to have." It's an essential part of agency operations, especially as the pace of technological change accelerates. (Federal Computer Week)
GSA points to Alliant 2 success for future of industry engagement. As federal agencies and industry vendors work together to improve their communication during acquisitions, the General Services Administration thinks its most recent mega IT contract could provide a model for success. (Fed Scoop)
U.S. SEC calls for 'clearer' cyber risk disclosure from companies. The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Wednesday updated guidance to public companies on how and when they should disclose cyber security risks and breaches, including potential weaknesses that have not yet been targeted by hackers. (Reuters)

5G Could Be Coming To A City Near You. 2018 could be the year of lightning-fast internet-depending on where you live. (Next Gov)

Fake news plague: Social media promotes bogus Parkland claims. YouTube, Facebook and Twitter were caught flat-footed when conspiracy theories about survivors of the Parkland, Fla., school shooting were unintentionally elevated on their sites through algorithms that promote trending topics and popular content. (Axios)

America's Emerging Petro Economy Flips the Impact of Oil. Higher prices used to spell trouble for the economy, but with the emergence of the U.S. as a leading oil producer, that no longer holds true. (Wall Street Journal)
Koch brothers try to kill gas tax hike. Some Republicans have very slowly come around to an idea that is anathema to their less-is-more governing philosophy: raising the federal tax on gasoline. (Washington Post)

University Pulls Back on Pollution Study That Supported Its Benefactor. The president of a Tennessee state university, under fire for an academic study on truck emissions that was paid for by a local trucking company, has asked federal officials to disregard the study, at least for now, in its review of pollution regulations that could benefit the company. (New York Times)

Tech Business

Amazon Is Taking Over the Stock Market, Too. The online retail giant has accounted for 27% of the S&P 500's gains this year, followed by Microsoft and Netflix. (Wall Street Journal)

ITI Member News

Broadcom Retaliates Against Qualcomm for Raising Its NXP Bid. Qualcomm on Tuesday increased its takeover bid for NXP Semiconductors, defying Broadcom's demand that it not do so. On Wednesday, Broadcom retaliated. (New York Times)
Twitter Faces Conservatives' Ire After Moves to Curb Automated Accounts. Restrictions target practices that are common among bot operators. (Wall Street Journal)
Twitter is going out of its way to verify accounts of some of the most prominent students who survived the Parkland shooting. Social media has been a dark place since 17 people were killed last week. (Recode)
Twitter bars tactics used by 'bots' to spread false stories. Twitter Inc said on Wednesday it would no longer allow people to post identical messages from multiple accounts, cracking down on a tactic that Russian agents and others have allegedly used to make tweets or topics go viral. (Reuters)
Twitter is (finally) cracking down on bots. Twitter is cracking down on bots after it announced changes to its API that will massively reduce the impact of services that allow links and content to be shared across multiple accounts, i.e. the software that powers Twitter bots. (Tech Crunch)
Nokia sees no path for 'struggling' digital health business: memo. Nokia does not see meaningful potential for its "struggling" digital health business which includes activity trackers and smartwatches, according to an internal memo seen by Reuters on Wednesday. (Reuters)
U.S. Intel plans $5 billion investment in Israeli plant: minister. Intel Corp plans to invest $5 billion to expand production at its Kiryat Gat plant in southern Israel, Israeli Economy Minister Eli Cohen said on Wednesday after talks with the U.S. chipmaker. (Reuters)
Apple in Talks to Buy Cobalt Directly From Miners. Apple Inc. is in talks to buy long-term supplies of cobalt directly from miners for the first time, according to people familiar with the matter, seeking to ensure it will have enough of the key battery ingredient amid industry fears of a shortage driven by the electric vehicle boom. (Bloomberg)
Samsung Galaxy S9 smartphone images leaked by MWC app. Pictures of Samsung's latest flagship phone have been disclosed by an app released by the firm itself. (BBC)

Today on the Hill

The House will meet at 9:00 a.m. for legislative business. First and last votes expected: 11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
The Senate is not in session.
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