CLIP-ings: November 19, 2021

Internet Governance

Meta Faces Lawsuit In Ohio Over Facebook Whistleblower Revelations: The securities suit brought by the state’s Attorney General on behalf of the Ohio Public Employees Retirement System and other investors alleges that the company misled the public about the “safety, security, and privacy of its platform,” and that fallout from whistleblower Frances Haugen’s revelations has cost investors over $100 billion.

Instagram Turns To Video Selfies For Account Verification: The platform has begun asking that users of suspected bot accounts submit video selfies that showcase “all angles of [the] face”; while Instagram owner Meta last week announced that it will begin shutting down certain uses of facial recognition, the company said that Instagram teams—not facial recognition technology—review verification videos. 

Artists And Rights Groups Condemn The Use Of Palm-Reading Technology At Concert Venues: In a letter to ticket provider AXS, its parent AEG, and the Red Rocks amphitheater, over 200 artists and activists have demanded the cancellation of contracts to use the Amazon One palm-reading technology—and other forms of biometric technology—at venues over concerns that Amazon may send biometric data to law enforcement agencies for use toward tracking activists and marginalized people.
Information Security and Cyberthreats

Robinhood Hackers Made Away With “Several Thousand” Phone Numbers: The investment platform, which revealed a significant security breach last week, announced that in addition to stealing usernames and email addresses, the hackers also stole an estimated 4,400 phone numbers, which may be used to perpetrate further hacks.

Singaporean Data Protection Authority Fines Travel Company For Data Breach: In response to the largest data breach it’s handled to date, Singapore’s Personal Data Protection Commission fined Commeasure for a breach that exposed 5.9 million users’ names, phone numbers, email addresses, birthdays, passwords, and booking information.
Intellectual Property

Apple Expands Consumer Options For Self-Repair: In what amounts to a significant shift for the company, beginning next year it will begin to publish repair manuals and make parts for its products available for sale to the public so that users can repair their own devices.
Free Expression and Censorship

Disney’s Text-To-Speech TikTok Voice Censored Certain LGBTQ Words: The feature, which rolled out last week as part of a Disney Plus Day promotion and converts text to speech in the sound of various Disney characters’ voices, initially skipped over words such as “gay,” “lesbian,” or “queer”; the issue has now been resolved without comment from TikTok.
On the Lighter Side

Instagram Introduces “Rage Shake” For Reporting Problems: Users who experience technical issues with the app can take out their frustration (and send a report to Instagram) by vigorously shaking their phone.
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Ron Lazebnik
Academic Director, Fordham CLIP

Tom Norton
Executive Director, Fordham CLIP