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Some random kvetching on the media code: 

Google’s search engine not as good as its competitors for news, research finds

How I dumped Google before it dumped me

Scott Morrison meets Google CEO Sundar Pichai over media bargaining code

  • Following on from his call to Satya Nadella of Microsoft, today ScoMo and Frydo got on the blower to Sundar Pichai, the CEO of Google, to discuss the media code. 
  • No details of what they discussed has been released, but for those sick of this story, parliament is expected to submit its report next friday.
  • In related news, The Guardian reports that Bing returns “more trusted news results” than Google
  • According to a study from Monash University, on Australia Day “Grace Tame” was the most popular search term used on Google – reflecting the fact that she had just been made Australian of the Year. The top 50 results delivered by Google included only 70% of professional news websites, compared with 94% for the same search term on Bing and 82% on Ecosia.
  • Meanwhile, at the Fin, John Davidson has experimented with “dumping google before it dumps me” 
  • He’s moved to DuckDuckGo, and appreciates the lack of tracking
  •  “I’ve not missed Google search one bit.” writes John. 

Wired has a look at Amazon’s Greatest hits of the Bezos era 

Amazon’s Greatest Gadget Hits in the Bezos Era: Kindle, Echo, and More

  • Quite a few duds and hits in the list
  • The original fugly kindle 
  • The Fire Phone that went nowhere
  • Dash buttons! Loved the idea of these 
  • And the product category the can claim ownership of, the voice assistant speaker

Is Apple really really making a car now? 

Kia Motors Shares Jump After Report Apple to Invest $3.6 Billion

Kuo adds fuel to Apple-Hyundai electric car rumors

NEWS: Dan Riccio begins a new chapter at Apple

Apple Car: It’s no secret, Apple’s actively working on Car tech

  • Kia Motors Corp. jumped as much as 14.5% after a local media report that Apple Inc. will invest 4 trillion won ($3.6 billion) as part of a collaboration with the South Korean carmaker on making electric vehicles.
  • Rumours have been circling for a while that Apple and Hyundai (a division of Kia) may collaborate – Hyundai almost blew their chances by publicly confirming the talks last month, then walking back the statement a few days later. The fiercely private Apple doesnt like when partners talk.. 
  • Could this be the new product that Dan Riccio has been appointed to? Last week Apple announced a cryptic new role for the hardware executive: 
  • “Apple today announced Dan Riccio will transition to a new role focusing on a new project and reporting to CEO Tim Cook, building on more than two decades of innovation, service, and leadership at Apple”
  • Apple has been rumoured, on and off, to be making a car since 2014
  • The development, named Project Titan, was rumoured to be shelved back in 2016 
  • In August 2018, Apple rehired Tesla engineer Doug Field, leading to speculation that Apple was again exploring a car option.
  • Imagine a car with all the style and cache of Tesla, without the bugs… 


Facebook Takes A Stand Against Myanmar Coup

  • After failing to stem the hate speech and misinformation that fueled a genocide in Myanmar, Facebook now says it plans to take proactive content moderation steps following a military coup taking place in the country.
  • In an internal message posted late on Monday and viewed by BuzzFeed News, Rafael Frankel, a director of public policy in the Asia-Pacific region, told employees that the social network was watching the “volatile situation” in Myanmar “with grave concern” and outlined a series of measures to crack down on people who used it to spread misinformation or threaten violence.
  • Tech companies rarely get a second chance at preventing genocide, so good on you facebook. Tread carefully. 

Highlight of the week: