DW: France to tax tech giants from 2019 as EU fails to act

DW: France to tax tech giants from 2019 as EU fails to act. “France said at the start of December it would start taxing Google, Apple, Facebook and Amazon, the big US technology companies known as GAFA, if European Union finance ministers failed to agree on a bloc-wide digital tax next year. Ten days later Le Maire said due to difficulties in finalizing a new EU-wide levy, France would introduce its own tax on the large internet and technology companies from January 1.”

TechCrunch: Supermicro says investigation firm found no spy chips

TechCrunch: Supermicro says investigation firm found no spy chips. “Supermicro has sent a letter to its customers saying that it has found no evidence of malicious chips on its motherboards. The company asked third-party company Nardello & Co. to audit Supermicro’s hardware. On October 4, a Bloomberg report claimed that China’s spies managed to conceal tiny malicious chips on Supermicro motherboards. Those chips would then end up in data centers operated by Supermicro customers, such as Amazon and Apple.”

TechCrunch: Tech giants offer empty apologies because users can’t quit

TechCrunch: Tech giants offer empty apologies because users can’t quit . “true apology consists of a sincere acknowledgement of wrong-doing, a show of empathic remorse for why you wronged and the harm it caused, and a promise of restitution by improving ones actions to make things right. Without the follow-through, saying sorry isn’t an apology, it’s a hollow ploy for forgiveness. That’s the kind of ‘sorry’ we’re getting from tech giants — an attempt to quell bad PR and placate the afflicted, often without the systemic change necessary to prevent repeated problems. Sometimes it’s delivered in a blog post. Sometimes it’s in an executive apology tour of media interviews. But rarely is it in the form of change to the underlying structures of a business that caused the issue.”

The Verge: Google, Apple, and Uber must share mapping data with rivals, says UK data group

The Verge: Google, Apple, and Uber must share mapping data with rivals, says UK data group. “Tech companies like Google, Apple, and Uber should be forced to share mapping data with rivals firms and the public sector, the UK government has been advised by a data advocacy group.”

ZDNet: Apple vehicles abandoned as employees go on foot to boost Maps data

ZDNet: Apple vehicles abandoned as employees go on foot to boost Maps data. “Apple has confirmed that employees are taking in the sights of California on foot in order to gather data for the Maps app. Individuals were first spotted wearing backpacks sporting ‘Apple Maps, maps.apple.com’ and laden with what appeared to be cameras and sensor equipment in October.”

The Next Web: Facebook’s former PR firm seeded fake stories about bias at Apple News

The Next Web: Facebook’s former PR firm seeded fake stories about bias at Apple News. “Facebook‘s recently-fired PR firm allegedly floated a story to journalists that Apple News was biased against Republicans. The company, Definers Public Affairs, made headlines this week after a bombshell New York Times report revealed that it was employed by Facebook to dig up dirt on critics and competitors. One of these competitors, according to documents obtained by CNN, was Apple News.”

9to5 Mac: Some iPhone users finding their Apple ID accounts have been inexplicably locked, requiring password resets

9to5 Mac: Some iPhone users finding their Apple ID accounts have been inexplicably locked, requiring password resets. “We haven’t quite yet worked out the pattern or the cause but we have received many reports of users waking up to find that their Apple ID has been locked, and plenty more are complaining on social media. Apple will lock accounts for many different reasons, usually when someone attempts to access an ID by entering their incorrect password too many times.”