Mar 26, 2018

Facebook’s new tangle: Users incensed at Android data scraping

Photo: Nasir Kachroo / NurPhoto via Getty Images

After a week of brutal publicity about Facebook data-harvesting by outsiders, including Cambridge Analytica, a new nightmare began for Mark Zuckerberg's company over the weekend.

The headline, from Ars Technica, a tech site owned by Condé Nast: "Facebook scraped call, text message data for years from Android phones."

  • Wait! What? "Facebook uses phone-contact data as part of its friend recommendation algorithm. ... If you granted permission to read contacts during Facebook's installation on Android a few versions ago ... that permission also granted Facebook access to call and message logs by default."
  • Facebook responded: "People have to expressly agree to use this feature."

Be smart: It's clear from the online outrage that many people didn't realize what they were agreeing to.

Go deeper

Don't panic

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The stock market is heading south with unprecedented velocity. Does that mean it's crashing? Are we in a recession? Is this a financial crisis?

No, no, and no.

Sanders' big socialism rebrand

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Bernie Sanders is trying to rebrand socialism in the U.S., but he'll have to overcome common fears about what the word means — fears the Trump campaign is watching and waiting to exploit.

Why it matters: Sanders may face a major challenge in convincing Americans in their 40s or older that there's a meaningful difference between what he supports, described as democratic socialism, and the authoritarian socialism that we've seen in regimes like Venezuela.

The next frontier for Big Science

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

In 1945, engineer and science administrator Vannevar Bush laid out a framework for support of science in the U.S. that drove prosperity and American dominance. That model isn't enough anymore, experts said at an event this week in Washington, D.C.

The big picture: With China threatening to overtake the U.S. in R&D spending even as research becomes more international, science must manage the tension between cooperation and competition.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 20 mins ago - Science