In This Issue


Chinese border guards are installing spyware on tourist smartphones

A joint investigation by Motherboard, The Guardian, The New York Times and Süddeutsche Zeitung has found that Chinese border guards are installing surveillance apps on tourist smartphones when they enter the Xinjiang region - a part of China with a large Muslim Uyghur population. The app "gathers personal data from phones, including text messages and contacts" and checks if the device is "carrying pictures, videos, documents and audio files that match any of more than 73,000 items included on a list stored within the app's code". China reckons they need to do this to keep people safe from Islamic fundamentalist terrorism. Mmhmm, yep, sure, cool.

Germany fines Facebook, UK investigates TikTok, Ireland launches 3rd investigation into Apple

Germany's Federal Office of Justice has fined Facebook 2 million euros for under-reporting instances of illegal material on its platform, which it's supposed to do under Germany's network transparency laws. Over in the UK, TikTok is getting investigated regarding how it handles underage customer data it and what it does to protect them from harm (pedos, bullying, etc.) whilst using TikTok. Apple is getting a new, third investigation by the Ireland Data Protection Commissioner to see if "Apple has complied with the relevant provisions of the GDPR in relation to an access request from a customer". Thank you Europe.

Tesla sells more cars than ever last quarter, but 3 VPs quit at once

Tesla has set a record quarter for deliveries, showing that people are still keen for a great electric car despite the guy running the joint being a solid gold wanker. 77,550 Model 3s and 17,650 Model S and Xs were delivered to customers in the last 3 months for a total of 95,200 vehicles. The share market liked this news and sent Tesla shares up 7%. Meanwhile, three vice presidents (Peter Hochholdinger VP of production, Jan Oehmicke VP of Europe and Steve MacManus VP of interior and exterior engineering) have quit Tesla in a single week. Three VPs quitting in a week has gotta be more than a coincidence, right?

Not News

Superhuman is a $30/m luxury email client

The latest Silicon Valley startup dorks are frothing to get access to is Superhuman, which I’ve seen in some people’s email sigs, but didn't know what the go was until I read this story in the NYT. They've got $33m in funding, Marc Andreessen is one of the investors and the pitch is "the fastest email experience ever made" for US$30/m. Over 180,000 people are on the waitlist to "fill out a long questionnaire about your email habits and work flow" then, if you’re approved (????), there’s a "mandatory session in which a representative gives you a videoconference tutorial" of this juiced up email app. God help us all.


🎶 GFY - Amyl and The Sniffers

😁 The Sizzle is curated by Anthony "@decryption" Agius and emailed every weekday afternoon. Join us on Slack and chat with other Sizzle subscribers.

The Sizzle is created on Wathaurong land and acknowledges the traditional owners of country throughout Australia, recognising their continuing connection to land, water and community. I pay my respect to them and their cultures and to elders both past and present.​