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What’s at stake in SCOTUS Florida, Texas social media cases

On Monday, the Supreme Court began hearing oral arguments in two cases that have the potential to remake online speech in America by weighing how the First Amendment applies to social media platforms.In Moody v. NetChoice and NetChoice v. Paxton, the justices will decide the constitutionality of a pair of laws that effectively strip tech companies’ agency to determine whose content they can restrict. Legal experts on both sides are calling them the two most important free-speech cases of this generation.Both involve a duo…

Supreme Court’s Big Tech Case Could Remake the Internet

The internet could look vastly different depending on how the U.S. Supreme Court rules on the question of whether tech companies’ curation of posts and users can be protected under the First Amendment.  The court heard oral arguments Monday for a pair of lawsuits challenging laws passed in Texas and Florida that barred social media sites from curating political speech. Both laws were inspired by conservative backlash claiming Big Tech platforms censored posts and users with right-wing viewpoints.  The…

Ron Wyden Is Pushing Big Tech’s Interests, Despite Wife’s Investments

Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) has led a public crusade to demand that the Biden administration push Big Tech’s anti-regulation agenda worldwide — despite the fact his wife owns up to $3 million worth of stock in major tech companies that could benefit from the effort, according to financial disclosure records.  Wyden has long been an ally of the tech industry, and his wife is quite wealthy. Ethics experts tell Rolling Stone that the situation does not violate any laws or congressional ethics rules, but could pose a…

OpenAI Sora’s Breaks Our Brains, Vision Pro Loses Its Luster, and More Big Tech News

Photo: Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu (Getty Images), Suzanne Cordeiro (Getty Images), Siegfried Layda (Getty Images), David Paul Morris/Bloomberg (Getty Images), Vladimir Vladimirov (Getty Images), Justin Sullivan / Staff (Getty Images), Mike Coppola (Getty Images), Image: OpenAIThe world seemingly, at the same time, held its breath with the reveal of OpenAI’s video generator, Sora, It’s as if everyone watching these marvelous fake videos realized that maybe technology had gone too far. Apple Vision Pro was supposed to be that

Big Tech Companies Pledge to Fight Election Deepfakes but Free Speech Issues Remain

Major tech companies announced a new pact at the Munich Security Conference on Friday pledging to fight AI-generated fakes that are intended to deceive the public and influence elections. The press conference, which was livestreamed online, featured leaders from Big Tech firms who’ve been under immense pressure in recent years to address the misinformation that’s proliferated online as it becomes easier to literally put words in someone else’s mouth.Like It or Not, Your Doctor Will Use AI | AI UnlockedThe signatories of…

Why Elon Musk, Peter Thiel, and other Silicon Valley figures are fascinated with drugs

Elon Musk uses drugs. So do some of the people he works with — including directors on the Tesla board — sometimes allegedly partaking with Musk. These revelations have been a minor point of scandal in the media lately, particularly after a Wall Street Journal article last year discussed how popular microdosing drugs like ketamine, LSD, and shrooms are in Silicon Valley, including among some of the most famous executives in the industry. It has become, the piece noted, “a routine part of doing business” for many. Musk…

DEI backlash: Stay up-to-date on the latest legal and corporate challenges

The Great Rollback is here. The phrase refers to Big Tech starting to slash some of the diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) programs that were implemented shortly after the murder of George Floyd. Most recently, Zoom announced that it laid off its DEI team. Google and Meta have started to defund their DEI programs, and funding to Black founders continues to dip. Lawsuits have been filed targeting DEI programs, forcing companies to now hide their inclusion efforts while billionaires are arguing on X about whether…

5 things about AI you may have missed today: Big tech’s AI dominance, US AI giants collab, GenAI risk, and more

French competition watchdog probes big tech's AI dominance; US AI giants collaborate on federal safety standards; Microsoft teams up with Sarvam AI for voice-based GenAI tools; government says AI will have jobs impact, but will create opportunities too- this and more in our daily roundup. Let us take a look. 1. French Competition Watchdog probes big tech's AI dominanceFrance's competition authority has initiated a public consultation on the AI sector, aiming to assess big tech firms' strategies. With a focus on companies…

Meta Platforms challenges EU over content moderation law fees

Facebook owner Meta announced on Wednesday it would challenge in court an EU demand for fees under a content moderation law.The European Commission last year put Meta's Facebook and Instagram on a list of "very large" online platforms that face tougher rules under the new Digital Services Act (DSA). Companies on the list must pay fees to the commission, the EU's executive arm, to bankroll enforcement of the DSA. Meta supported the DSA's aims and had introduced measures to comply, "but we disagree with the methodology…

‘Asymmetries’ between digital publishers and big tech a concern, says Union Minister Rajeev Chandrasekhar

Union Minister of State for Electronics and Technology Rajeev Chandrasekhar said that ‘asymmetries' exist between digital publishers and big tech platforms. Speaking at the DNPA Conclave & Awards 2024 held in New Delhi on Tuesday, the minister highlighted concerns over ad-tech monopolies and the revenue-sharing model between those who create content and those who help monetize it.On monopoliesTalking about the ad-tech monopolies, Chandrasekhar said, “We are concerned about the deep asymmetry between those who create…