San Francisco sues local drone maker, drone maker then shuts down

Gadget Gurus
Ars TechnicaArs Technica wrote the following post Fri, 13 Jan 2017 16:20:12 -0600

San Francisco sues local drone maker, drone maker then shuts down

Enlarge (credit: Lily Robotics)

A San Francisco-based drone startup that raised $34 million in pre-orders folded on Thursday, the same day the company, Lily Robotics, was sued by the local district attorney in county court. The city accuses Lily Robotics of engaging in false advertising and unlawful business practices.

The company's story is reminiscent of the now-defunct Torquing Group, a Wales-based firm that raised $3.4 million (the largest European Kickstarter project to date) to build a drone called the Zano that ended up not going anywhere, either.

In 2015, Lily Robotics released a slick YouTube promo video demonstrating its drone, calling it the world’s first “throw-and-shoot camera.” It received widespread, breathless coverage from various other media outlets, ranging from Wired to TechCrunch. Lily Robotics' founders were named on the “Forbes 30 under 30” list in 2015. And in addition to its pre-orders, the startup took in $15 million in venture capital, according to CrunchBase.

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#Lily #Robotics #Advertising @Laissez-Faire Capitalism+
Google’s ad tracking just got creepier. Here’s how to disable it

Gadget Gurus
Technology | The GuardianTechnology | The Guardian wrote the following post Fri, 21 Oct 2016 16:30:58 -0500

Google’s ad tracking just got creepier. Here’s how to disable it

Google in June quietly deleted a clause in its privacy settings that said it would not combine cookie information with personal information without consent

Google has changed the way it tracks users across the internet so that it can now link people’s personally identifiable information from Gmail, YouTube and other accounts with their browsing records across the web. The company had previously pledged to keep these two data sets separate to protect individuals’ privacy.

As first reported by Propublica, Google quietly updated its privacy settings in June to delete a clause that said “we will not combine DoubleClick cookie information with personally identifiable information unless we have your opt-in consent”.
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#Privacy #Google #Tracking #Advertising
Google to punish sites that use intrusive pop-over ads

Seth Martin
  last edited: Wed, 24 Aug 2016 11:10:59 -0500  
It's nice to see Google doing something positive with their power.

Ars TechnicaArs Technica wrote the following post Wed, 24 Aug 2016 08:45:28 -0500

Google to punish sites that use intrusive pop-over ads

(credit: Google)

Pop-up ads are annoying on desktop, but even more frustrating on mobile devices when they sometimes take over the browser. Google wants to fix that: in a blog post, the company announced that, starting next year, websites with intrusive advertisements will be punished and may be pushed down in search results.

Essentially, Google wants search results to favor sites that have the best information and the least annoying advertisements that cover up that information. "While the underlying content is present on the page and available to be indexed by Google," the blog post says, "content may be visually obscured by an interstitial. This can frustrate users because they are unable to easily access the content that they were expecting when they tapped on the search result."

Google claims these intrusive ads and interstitials create "a poorer experience" for users, particularly on mobile where space is limited by smaller screens. It's not wrong—sometimes pop-up or pop-over ads that show up on mobile websites can take up the entire display, forcing you to view them while furiously trying to find the "X" to close them. After January 10, 2017, sites that show these kinds of ads (which include content-obscuring "please subscribe to our newsletter!" pop-overs) "may not rank as highly" in search results.

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#Google #Advertising #AdBlock @Gadget Guru+
Mike Macgirvin
  last edited: Wed, 24 Aug 2016 15:34:26 -0500  
On one hand, it's a nice gesture. On the other it represents a slippery slope of Google become judge, jury, and executioner of content on the internet. It isn't a far cry from this to something like religions and political pages making viewers uncomfortable. They already decided some time ago that they were the sole judge of 'what is truth' on the internet and could drop the pagerank of anything which hadn't been successfully peer reviewed.
Seth Martin
  last edited: Wed, 24 Aug 2016 16:37:02 -0500  
Crap, you're right. The warm fuzzy is gone now.
Marshall Sutherland
  last edited: Wed, 24 Aug 2016 17:47:57 -0500  
Maybe they should downgrade sites with auto-playing videos.