Issue 1306 - Wednesday 17th February, 2021

In Today's Issue

The News

Nine Entertainment the latest media corp to stitch up a deal with Google for news content

Google has agreed to pay Nine Entertainment (the group responsible for news outlets like The Age & Sydney Morning Herald, as well as the Nine TV channel and radio stations) more than $30m/year to use its news content "on a variety of different products such as Google News Showcase and Subscribe with Google". This is on the back of Google agreeing to give Seven West Media (some newspapers as well as the Seven TV network) a similar amount of money yesterday "for its content to be displayed in a new product called News Showcase". There's plenty of media outlets that haven't signed deals with Google and Facebook hasn't signed anything, so the mandatory media bargaining code is still full steam ahead.

Twitter gives its take on the proposed Identity and Disrupt Bill (hint: it sucks)

The Identity and Disrupt bill is currently getting run up the flagpole in Canberra and would "allow the Australian Federal Police to take control of a person's online account to gather evidence about serious offences, as well as to add, copy, delete or alter material". For example if you went on Twitter and threatened to kill an MP's family, then Twitter would have to give the AFP access to your account somehow without you knowing your account was taken over. Twitter has pointed out many flaws in the proposed bill, when it comes to human rights, the privacy of 3rd party users interacting with this taken over account and the technicalities of doing so.

LastPass restricting free service to a single device type next month

Heads up for all the people using LastPass - they're restricting their free service to only one "device type" on March 16th. This means that unless you pay for LastPass, you'll only be able to sync your passwords between "Computers" or "Mobile Devices". The most common scenario people use LastPass for, syncing between a desktop/laptop PC and a smartphone will require a paid account. People will be upset about a perceived bait & switch, but honestly, LastPass is cheap ($4.50/m or $6/m for a group of 6 people) and you probably use it all the time, it's only fair to cough up for it. BitWarden is supposed to be pretty good if these changes to LastPass piss you off. If I wasn't too lazy to move away from 1Password that's probably what I'd be using so I could self-host it.

Something I Saw On The Internet

Cop a load of this e-ink touch screen remote from Sony

I like this touch screen e-ink remote control from Sony that's only available in Japan. Because the HUIS 100RC has a screen on it, it's flexible enough to use with any device (an air conditioner, smart lights, fans, a TV, etc.) without having to add a zillion buttons. Because it's an e-ink screen the battery lasts ages as it doesn't use much power when on. There's even a Windows app that'll let you make a custom design for each device. How the hell isn't this available outside Japan?! You can buy it from importers (roughly ~$350 delivered, oof) but without English language support, setup would be a huge pain in the arse.

Bargains

The End

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