Yesterday the Supreme Court heard oral arguments in Gonzalez v. Google, which is a case with potentially huge ramifications for Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act (aka, “The Twenty-Six words that Created the Internet”). My colleague Adi Robertson has a great writeup of the day’s proceedings, which centers around whether YouTube’s video recommendation algorithm represents a form of speech that shouldn’t have Section 230 protections.
Next up, Elon Musk is continuing to lay off dozens of employees at Twitter, despite claiming last November that the bulk of the firings were over. He’s also set a week’s deadline to overhaul the platform’s ad targeting to work more like Google’s.
And finally, Microsoft has announced a partnership with Nvidia as it attempts to lobby regulators to allow its acquisition of Activision Blizzard to proceed. As with Nintendo, the deal centers around offering Xbox games on Nvidia’s platform for 10 years. Note that the “platform” in this case is Nvidia’s GeForce Now cloud gaming service rather than a specific piece of hardware.
Now, here’s a silly tweet to start your day:
Stay tuned, as we continue to update this list with the most important news of today: Wednesday, February 22nd, 2023.
The US Copyright Office says you can’t copyright Midjourney AI-generated images
A copyright registration granted to the Zarya of the Dawn comic book has been partially canceled, because it included “non-human authorship” that hadn’t been taken into account.
Google resolves 10-hour issue that prevented Gmail from syncing with Outlook
If you didn’t get any new email on Wednesday, it may be because Gmail and some of Microsoft’s servers weren’t talking.
Feb 23A nice reminder to audit the code of the DeFi protocol you’re using.
The founders of Forsage, a alleged Ponzi purporting to be a DeFi protocol have been indicted for fraud. That’s not the funny part.
Analysis of the computer code underlying Forsage’s smart contracts allegedly revealed that, consistent with a Ponzi scheme, as soon as an investor invested in Forsage by purchasing a “slot” in a Forsage smart contract, the smart contract automatically diverted the investor’s funds to other Forsage investors, such that earlier investors were paid with funds from later investors.
Notion’s now letting anyone use its AI features
You can try it for free for a while, but eventually, you’ll have to pay.
Nvidia is still making billions in Q4 2023 despite a giant drop in PC demand
$1.4 billion in profit might be half as much as last quarter, but the company’s still making major money.
Realme is working on a Dynamic Island copycat just as the original gets more useful
Realme might just be the first Android brand with a Dynamic Island clone, according to a recent leak. Meanwhile, third-party app support is starting to flow in for Apple’s original.
Netflix’s new NFL docuseries starring Patrick Mahomes debuts this summer
The new show, Quarterback, will follow Mahomes, Kirk Cousins, and Marcus Mariota.
Razer launches new Blade 15, and it’s still 16:9
Same old chassis, brand-new chips.
Tesla announces new engineering headquarters in California
The company is taking over office space in Palo Alto previously occupied by Hewlett Packard. Tesla used to be headquartered in California before moving to Austin, Texas, in early 2021.
Was trading NBA Top Shots actually like trading stocks? A lawsuit will decide
A judge allowed a lawsuit accusing Dapper Labs of selling unregistered securities to proceed, despite arguments that the NFT Moments are just like baseball cards.
The Mercedes-Benz E-Class is getting a giant touchscreen, TikTok, and a selfie camera
The next-generation version of the automaker’s best-selling model is packed full of high-tech features.
Feb 22You can now cut Alexa out of Amazon’s multiroom audio equation.
Love the ease of setting up wireless whole home audio with inexpensive Echo speakers but don’t love having to evoke the Assistant whenever you want to change it up? New features in Alexa multiroom music give you Sonos-like app controls over your audio. Here’s how to set up Alexa multiroom audio and how to use it.
Nintendo is creating an entertainment empire, and it all starts with Mario
With theme parks and a movie, the company is pushing outside of its traditional console gaming comfort zone.
- Is the shine coming off of the Hyundai Ioniq 5?
Every car and tech journalists’ favorite EV is reportedly experiencing some worrisome issues with its latest software update. According to Jalopnik, the Ioniq 5 recently received a software update to help with battery conditioning, which resulted in the car’s Eco mode becoming dangerously slow. How dangerous we talking here?
With Eco mode engaged, and one-pedal driving turned on, I went for a drive where I eventually had to make an unprotected left turn across traffic. I pressed the throttle to the floor and the car crawled forward, right as I started to cross the flow of oncoming traffic. Suddenly, this 320-horsepower crossover was inching through the intersection, barely gaining any speed. I continued on my journey, mindful of the vehicle’s limited performance. Every other drive mode was normal, but in Eco mode, the Ioniq 5 felt more than slow — it felt broken.
Hyundai says another software update should fix the problem. But until then, enter Eco mode with extreme caution.
Amazon closes $3.9 billion buy of membership-based healthcare provider One Medical
The FTC hasn’t stepped in so far, and now Amazon’s latest acquisition is temporarily offering new subscribers a discounted rate to try its Netflix-for-primary-care service.
- Sony teases 2023 TV lineup news for March 1st.
Sony broke from tradition and didn’t announce new TVs at CES 2023. Instead, its keynote was used as a showcase for Afeela. But according to the company’s UK Twitter account, you can expect to get the full details for Sony’s latest Bravia XR lineup on March 1st. Prepare yourselves for some very nice screens.
Feb 22Good news if you have a Cochlear hearing implant and an Amazon Fire TV.
You can now directly stream audio from certain Fire TV devices to Cochlear’s hearing implants! You can find a full list of compatible devices here.
The goal is to help people with hearing loss more easily enjoy movies, TV shows, and other entertainment. You can do this if you’ve got a compatible Starkey Bluetooth hearing aid, too.
The Xbox Game Pass Friends & Family plan is expanding to six new countries
The service is now live in New Zealand, South Africa, Chile, Hungary, Israel, and Sweden. There’s no word on when it’ll hit other regions like the US, though.
Spotify HiFi was announced two years ago — and it still hasn’t launched
As the subscription music leader nears its latest Stream On event, we might be reaching the point of now or never for lossless audio on Spotify.
Feb 22Join us again and listen to the Supreme Court consider the future of the internet.
The justices will reconvene at 10AM ET and oral arguments will begin shortly after in Twitter v Taamneh. If you need to catch up on the action in Gonzalez v. Google, check out yesterday’s coverage from Adi.
You can listen along live to today’s arguments here as we post updates throughout the hearing:
No Man’s Sky is getting an overhauled VR mode with the launch of PSVR 2
The 4.1 update isn’t just about virtual reality, but also adds features like gyro controls and a speedy new starship.
- Bill Gates snags a 3.76 percent stake in Heineken’s parent company.
His shares are reportedly worth about 880 million euros ($936 million). Despite being “not a big beer drinker,” it’s a 2007 investment in another brewery, Femsa, that has brought Heineken into the Gates investment fold.
It’s an interesting arrangement, considering the Melinda & Bill Gates Foundation-sponsored study released last year laying out both potential health risks (particularly for people under 40) and benefits from alcohol consumption:
These findings highlight the need for tailored guidelines that discourage alcohol consumption among young people, as well as alcohol control policies and interventions that are targeted especially towards young males.
Gran Turismo 7 VR hands-on: it might make you a PSVR 2 believer
PSVR 2 reviewers didn’t get to try Gran Turismo in VR — here’s why that’s a shame.
Elon Musk keeps laying off Twitter employees after saying cuts were done
Meanwhile, he is still giving aggressive deadlines to make sweeping changes, like revamping how ad targeting works in a week.
The Supreme Court is deciding the future of the internet, and it acted like it
The oral arguments for Gonzalez v. Google covered a surprisingly nuanced series of real-world concerns.
Microsoft recruited Nintendo and Nvidia to help fight Sony over the Activision deal
Microsoft is hoping two gaming giants will help get its Activision Blizzard deal across the line with regulators in Europe.
Microsoft is bringing Xbox PC games to Nvidia’s GeForce Now service
Microsoft says it will bring its Xbox PC games to Nvidia’s GeForce Now cloud streaming service. If its Activision deal is approved, it will also bring Activision Blizzard’s games to Nvidia’s service.