• Looking Into Zuckerberg's Past
    CNET delves deep into Mark Zuckerberg’s history -- going back to his days growing up in a small suburb just outside of New York City. “He’s really quick,” says Kathleen Reckling, Zuckerberg’s teammate on the their high school fencing squad. Said Reckling’s mother, and Zuckerberg fencing coach: “He was a leader. Kids liked him … He was a ham, but he also commanded a lot of respect.”  
  • Chat Tool Maker Discord Looking For $50M
    Chat tool maker Discord is hoping to raise $50 million at a valuation of around $1.65 billion, The Wall Street Journal reports. “The bulk of the funding will go toward international growth and building out its $4.99 monthly subscription service Nitro, which gives users access to special emojis and other digital perks,” it writes.
  • Google Reimagines Text Feature As 'Chat'
    Along with some much-needed improvements, Google is rebranding its standard text-messaging app on Android as “Chat,” The Verge reports. So the feature works for everyone, “Google has been quietly corralling every major cellphone carrier on the planet into adopting technology to replace SMS,” it writes. “It’s going to be called ‘Chat,’ and it’s based on a standard called the ‘Universal Profile for Rich Communication Services.’”
  • Top Brands Promote Appalling YouTube Content
    Hundreds of brands from Adidas to Amazon to Netflix to Nordstrom have run ads on YouTube channels accompanying white nationalists, Nazis, pedophiles and conspiracy theories. That’s according to a new report from CNN. “US tax dollars may have gone to the channels, too,” it reports. “Ads from five US government agencies, such as the Department of Transportation and Centers for Disease Control, appeared on the channels.”  
  • What's In Store For Marissa Mayer?
    The New York Times sits down with Marissa Mayer for her first interview since leaving Yahoo. Topics include her failure to revive the digital dinosaur and her plans for the future. At the moment, “We have this little lab that we’re working on called Lumi Labs,” she tells The Times. "We have some ideas in the consumer space … So I’ve been meeting with different founders and just seeing what’s happening in the industry.”
  • YouTube CEO Addresses Demonetization, Other Issues
    YouTube is launching a pilot program to address creators’ concerns over demonetization and other issues, The Verge reports, citing a new blog post by CEO Susan Wojcicki. “Wojcicki acknowledged the frustrations of many content creators who have voiced their concerns, saying that the last two weeks had been ‘challenging’ and that YouTube was ‘committed to communicate more with all of you,’” it writes.  
  • iPhone X Producing Huge Profits
    In the fourth quarter of 2017, the iPhone X accounted for 35% of total worldwide handset profits, MacRumors reports, citing new estimates from Counterpoint Research. As MacRumors marvels: “The device generated 5x more profit than the combined profit of more than 600 Android OEMs during the quarter, despite the fact that it was only available for purchase during the final two months of the year and in spite of reports pointing towards lackluster sales of the device.”  
  • Snapchat Adds Direct Response Ads To 'Camera'
    Snapchat is adding direct response ads to its “camera,” Recode reports. “They’re the kind of ads that are huge on Facebook, and Snap already offers a version of these ads in other parts of the app, like alongside publisher content inside its Discover section,” it notes. “But now it’s putting them right smack dab in the camera.”
  • New York AG Launches Investigation Into Bitcoin Exchanges
    Eric Schneiderman, New York’s Attorney General, just launched an investigation into bitcoin exchanges, The Verge reports. “He’s looking into thirteen major exchanges, including Coinbase, Gemini Trust, and Bitfinex, requesting information on their operations and what measures they have in place to protect consumers,” it writes.
  • Ex-Cambridge Analytica Staffer Says Facebook Data Harvesting Worse Than Expected
    Brittany Kaiser, a former Cambridge Analytica employee, claims that the firm harvested data from far more than 87 million Facebook uses, The Guardian reports. Cambridge Analytica had a suite of personality quizzes designed to extract personal data from the social network, Kaiser told the UK’s Commons digital, culture, media and sport select committee, this week.
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