Private Social Network MeWe Reaches 6 Million Members

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Private social network MeWe has reached six million members in 2019 and was named the Best Entrepreneurial Company for this year.

MeWe expects over 100 million members by the end of 2020, having achieved 405% growth in 2018 and growing twice as fast on a daily basis in 2019. 60% of MeWe’s traffic is international and 35% of members are active—exceeding industry standards.

I’ll be honest, I haven’t used MeWe since I reviewed it. But I’ll gladly promote alternatives to Facebook, especially if privacy is the number one focus.

IMF Calls on Policymakers to Address Digital Currencies

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Economists at the International Monetary Fund (IMF) are calling on policymakers around the world to address the “notable risks” of privately-issued digital currencies, otherwise known as stablecoins. Facebook’s Libra is one such example. Should central banks issue their own digital currencies?

The two economists suggest that stablecoins could undermine financial stability, and that stablecoin users risk losing their money: “Whether stablecoins are indeed stable is questionable.” It depends on the safety and availability of the underlying assets, and whether they are “protected from other creditors if the stablecoin provider goes bankrupt.”

One of the worries is that technology companies don’t have the same consumer protection rules as banks do. I look forward to seeing how this will play out. I certainly trust banks more than I do Facebook.

Facebook Refuses to Fact-Check Politicians

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Facebook moves to hold politicians to lower standards than the rest of us, saying that politicians will be exempt from its fact-checking system.

Facebook uses independent third-party fact-checking organizations to help identity fake news, misleading claims and misinformation. However, it said posts made by politicians would not be fact-checked. It said it did not want to be the “referee” in political debates or prevent politicians’ posts from reaching their intended audience. However, it did not define who it counted as a politician.

Mark Zuckerberg won’t fact-check politicians but he’ll gladly take their political advertising money.

Facebook Abuses Collected in Snap's 'Project Voldemort'

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Snap, the parent company of Snapchat, reportedly has a dossier of anticompetitive behavior Facebook carried out over the years, dubbed Project Voldemort.

According to the WSJ, Snap’s legal team recorded instances where Facebook discouraged prominent social media influencers with a presence on multiple platforms from mentioning Snap on their Instagram accounts. Snap executives also suspected Facebook was suppressing content that originated on Snap from trending on Instagram, when such content was shared there.

Facebook Launches New Surveillance Devices For Your Home

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Today Facebook launched Portal video chatting devices that definitely won’t be used to spy on you and your loved ones. They will let Facebook users watch television together over a video call. Andrew Bosworth, VP of AR/VR at Facebook, said:

I think that in a couple years’ time, if you have a smart streaming device that doesn’t have a camera allowing you to video call people, you’re not going to have a competitive product. I think this is the killer feature for a device like this.

Bosworth also touted privacy protections like local processing of smart features on the devices, which means most user data will not be sent back to Facebook servers.

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA.

iOS 13 Forced Facebook to Admit it Collects Your Location Data

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Yes, I know how shocked you are folks. As it turns out, Facebook lied about yet another thing: It totally collects your location data, and admitted that fact itself in a blog post.

For years the antisocial media giant has claimed it doesn’t track your location, insisting to suspicious reporters and privacy advocates that its addicts “have full control over their data,” and that it does not gather or sell that data unless those users agree to it.

Then, late on Monday, Facebook emitted a blog post in which it kindly offered to help users “understand updates” to their “device’s location settings.”

You may have missed the critical part amid the glowing testimony so we’ll repeat it: “… use precise location even when you’re not using the app…”

Quote from a TMO reader: “Hoping that FB will somehow become secure is as much magical thinking as expecting a wild pig to perform the role Juliet for Bolshoi.”

Facebook's Digital Currency, Libra, in Trouble

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Facebook in a big pile of money

The pushback against Libra is increasing. BBC News writes:

Financial bigwigs are upset because Facebook, a corporation, appears to want to take on a government-like role, creating a currency and perhaps even setting monetary policy.

Big Money is power. Facebook is trying to seize power at a governmental level. Sparks are gonna fly.