Google Chrome launches default ad-blocker

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Google has launched an ad-blocker for its Chrome web browser that is designed to prevent “annoying” and “intrusive” ads being shown to users. Google announced the move to curtail full-page and auto-playing video ads, among others, last year. The choice of which ads to block will be determined by the Coalition for Better Ads (CBA) – made up of companies including Google and Facebook. Sites will have 30 days to remove disruptive ads before blocking begins. A survey of 40,000 US and European web users found that the most intrusive…

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Snapchat CEO says the redesign is here to stay

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Despite a lot of backlash over a big redesign for the Snapchat app, the CEO Evan Spiegel vigorously defended the redesign and basically said people need to get used to it. Spiegel said at the Goldman Sachs Internet & Technology Conference that even people complaining about the app was a sort of validation that the changes the company wants to happen are, indeed, happening. Snap aimed to try to separate the idea of communication and broadcasting with Snap into similar buckets, rather than the features being kind of mixed up…

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Germany’s Flawed Social Media Laws

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The new German law that compels social media companies to remove hate speech and other illegal content can lead to unaccountable, overboard censorship and should be promptly reversed, Human Rights Watch said. The law sets a dangerous precedent for other governments looking to restrict speech online by forcing companies to censor on the government’s behalf. Governments and the public have valid concerns about the proliferation of illegal or abusive content online, but the new Ger“man law is fundamentally flawed,” said Wenzel Michalski, Germany director at Human Rights Watch. “It is…

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