DTNS 2230 – The phone is mightier than the gun

Logo by Mustafa Anabtawi thepolarcat.comDan Patterson is on the show. He’ll talk about his experience training Sudanese media makers in Egypt and how mobile phones are changing the world.


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Show Notes

Today’s guest: Dan Patterson, technologist and journalist


Did I say “forever”? I meant, “not really”: The Next Web reports Snapchat agreed to a “Consent decree” with the U.S. FTC over a database leak and misrepresentation of how the service stored user messages. Snapchat had said photos and videos would “disappear forever,” although there were many ways to work around that. Snapchat changed its privacy policy, app description and in-app notifications. Snapchat’s agreement with the FTC requires that it create a privacy program, subject itself to independent monitoring for 20 years, and stop misrepresenting how it handles user data.

Next stop – Head of the WORLD! Reuters reports that Samsung replaced the head of its mobile design team, Chang Dong-hoon, who offered to resign last week. Lee Min-hyouk will take over the role. Chang will focus on the Design Strategy Team, which is responsible for long-term design across all Samsung’s businesses. Lee has been a rising star at Samsung, becoming the company’s youngest senior executive in 2010 for his role in designing the Galaxy series of phones. 

Can’t wait to see the comments section: Reuters also reports more than 100 technology companies, including Google, Facebook, Twitter and Amazon signed a letter to the U.S. FCC opposing proposed open Internet guidelines that would allow commercially reasonable traffic discrimination. The letter called the rules a ‘grave threat to the Internet’ and called for a delay in their proposal. A meeting is set for May 15th which would make the proposal official, and open the guidelines to a public comment period.

Mario figurine, anyone? Ars Technica reports Nintendo plans to release a low-priced game console targeted towards “emerging markets.” Nintendo President Satoru Iwata spoke to the press following an investor briefing Wednesday, but didn’t give details on the new hardware or what countries it would be released in. Nintendo also announced “the Nintendo Figurine Platform” featuring collectible toys that share data with a variety of Nintendo games using NFC.

I would like all the players to wear pink: The Verge reports Epic Games announced the next Unreal Tournament will be completely free and developed in the open. The development will be lead by senior Epic Games programmers, but anyone can contribute. The company plans to use forums and Twitch Streams as well as a GitHub repository. The company plans to make money off a forthcoming online marketplace for user-generated mods and content. 

Thanks, I think? Re/code reports executives from Comcast and Time Warner Cable appeared before the U.S. House Judiciary Committee. Most of the questions asked what the benefit to the consumers would be. Comcast replied the combined company would deliver a significantly improved customer experience, but not lower prices. Rep. Blake Farenthold of Texas, noted that the combined company would serve 91% of Hispanic households, and asked for assurances the company would not discriminate against non Comcast-NBC spanish-language programming.

Move over, Twitter: The Next Web reports Japanese messaging app Line reported revenues have increased 223% over the past year and 19% over the past quarter. Line has more than 420 million registered users and makes half its revenues from in-app purchases related to some 30 games connected tot he messaging app. Line also makes money from advertisers who can push messages to followers who have asked for them. Paul McCartney for instance has more followers on Line than on Twitter. The company has been piloting flash sales through the app. And also stickers. They sell virtual stickers. 

News From You

Angryfuture submitted the top story on the subreddit today from Tweaktown, which I also found reported on Ars Technica. Lawyers for Mediabridge Products who make routers, sent a letter to a redditor called trevely Monday threatening to sue unless he deleted a negative review of a Medialink Wireless Router from Amazon. Mediabridge’s attorney, Neal Jacobs says trevely’s review was a “campaign to damage, discredit, defame and libel Mediabridge.”

toddkam posted the Business Week article about a group from Université Laval in Quebec who won Shell’s Eco-marathon Americas competition with a car that achieved 2,824 miles per gallon. If that impresses you, it shouldn’t. Last year the same school achieved 3,587 miles per gallon. The car, which competed in the prototype class of the competition has a teardrop shape, and is not built for comfort or speed.

Spydrchick submitted the Gawker story that a band from LA called Vulfpeck racked up $20,000 in royalties from Spotify thanks to their album Sleepify. The band asked fans to stream the entirely silent album through the night as they slept, racking up plays for Vulfpeck that paid $.007 cents per track. Fans could generate $3 a night for the band and enough nights and enough fans added up to $20K. Spotify spokesman Graham James said, “Sleepify seems derivative of John Cage’s work.” Spotify has also made the band remove the album for violating terms of service. Whether they’ll get paid a check remains to be seen.

Discussion Section Links: 








Pick of the Day:  Todoist via Ashish Bogawat

Ashish Bogawat has our pick of the day: the task list management app Todoist. “With a pretty minimalistic interface, the app can be as simple or complex as you want – no mean feat in this day & age. That it has native clients available for virtually every platform out there, as well as offline mode in the web app is just icing on the cake.”

Friday’s guest: Darren Kitchen and Len Peralta