Instagram Fundraisers Want Your Credit Card Information

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Instagram Fundraisers will let you easily donate to non-profit organizations on the platform. It’s also a way for Facebook to get its hands on your credit card information.

New code and imagery dug out of Instagram’s Android app reveals how the Fundraiser stickers will allow you to search for nonprofits and add a Donate button for them to your Instagram Story. After you’ve donated to something once, Instagram could offer instant checkout on stuff you want to buy using the same payment details.

Facebook tried to get banks to give up your data, but now it will have to settle for this instead.

Facebook Lets You Search for Photos of Your Female Friends

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Matthew Hughes writes about how Facebook lets you search for photos of your female friends, but not your male friends. Not that you should creep on guys either, though.

Facebook lets you search for photos of your female friends, but refuses to play dice if you want to look up pictures of your male friends. The bizarre find was discovered this weekend by notorious Belgian white-hat hacker Inti De Ceukelaire.

Every time I ask myself, “Can Facebook get any more toxic?” The answer is YES. It’s as if Mark Zuckerberg is competing to be the Worst Person in America.

Sorry, Facebook Messenger Decryption is Secret

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Yesterday a U.S. judge ruled that a secret government effort to compel Facebook to decrypt Messenger voice conversations won’t be revealed.

Groups including the American Civil Liberties Union argued that the public’s right to know the state of the law on encryption outweighed any reason the U.S. Justice Department might have for protecting a criminal probe or law-enforcement method.

One word: PRISM.

Facebook Research Broke the Rules. Now it Faces the Consequences

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Casey Newton wrote a defense of Facebook/attack of Apple, because of the Facebook Research app that got banned.

But for all the attention we’re paying to Facebook’s moves here, I hope we spare at least as much for Apple. If Tim Cook can wreak this much havoc on Facebook’s day, however justified, just imagine what power Apple holds over the rest of us.

That power is App Store rules, which Facebook willfully ignored. We should be glad that big companies have to follow the same rules as small companies. If you’re a Facebook employee unable to use internal apps, don’t be mad at Apple. Instead, be mad at your employer who was willing to throw it all away in order to take advantage of children.

This Weird Trick Will Make Five Eyes Countries Hate You

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Michael Grothaus argues that it’s the perfect time for Android iMessage thanks to Facebook’s plans to unify its messaging apps.

The iPhone maker’s messaging app is widely regarded as one of the best messaging apps ever, thanks to its clean, simple design, its ability to send and receive both encrypted iMessages and regular SMS text messages in the same interface, and its end-to-end encryption.

It’s not the first time this has been suggested, but I think Android iMessage would be great for users. We need an end-to-end encrypted messaging app from a company with a better track record than Facebook.

Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp and Instagram to be Integrated

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Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg

Facebook Chief Executive Mark Zucerkberg plans to integrate Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp and, Instagram. A detailed report in the New York Times said that the move could happen at the end of 2019 or 2020. Mr. Zuckerberg reportedly wants all the services to use end-to-end encryption. It would mean that a user with a Messenger account, could send an encrypted message to a user with just a WhatsApp account, for instance.

By stitching the apps’ infrastructure together, Mr. Zuckerberg wants to increase the utility of the social network, keeping its billions of users highly engaged inside its ecosystem. If people turn more regularly to Facebook-owned properties for texting, they may forgo rival messaging services, such as those from Apple and Google, said the people, who declined to be identified because the moves are confidential. If users interact more frequently with Facebook’s apps, the company may also be able to build up its advertising business or add new services to make money, they said.

Apple Outspent by Rivals in Record Year of Tech Lobbying

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U.S. Capitol Building

Tech firms spent a record amount lobbying the U.S. Government in 2018. Re/Code reported that Apple spent $6.6 million, slightly down from $7.2 million the year before. Although significant, Apple’s outlay was lower than that of the other major tech firms. For example, Google spent $21 million, while Amazon spent $14.2 million, and Facebook spent $12.6 million. Microsoft too outspent Apple, spending $9.5 million. In total, the firms invested $48 million in lobbying in 2018, up 13% from the year before.

Lobbying growth among the tech giants — especially companies that leverage user data for advertising revenue — comes as they are falling under increased government scrutiny. Facebook in particular faces a record Federal Trade Commission fine over apparent violations of data privacy practices in the Cambridge Analytica scandal that was revealed last year.

Mark Zuckerberg's Op-Ed is Tone Deaf

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Mark Zuckerberg has written an op-ed for The Wall Street Journal, and it’s as tone deaf as ever.

Sometimes this means people assume we do things that we don’t do. For example, we don’t sell people’s data, even though it’s often reported that we do. In fact, selling people’s information to advertisers would be counter to our business interests, because it would reduce the unique value of our service to advertisers. We have a strong incentive to protect people’s information from being accessed by anyone else.

Any service that relies on ad money means the advertiser is the customer. I’d love to hear from an advertiser that would refuse access to peoples’ personal information. Facebook may not sell that data directly to advertisers but you can bet it sells access to the data. Two different words that point to the same destination.