You really should savor it, since this is the last Login for the year. But, if you are in a hurry, you should be able to make it through the 1,177 words in about 4 minutes.
And Login will be back in your inbox on Jan. 2. Happy holidays from all of us on the Axios tech team.
Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios
To speed new products to market, Facebook famously used to tell its employees to "move fast and break things." The job of cleaning up some of the resulting debris is one the company is tackling a lot more slowly.
Why it matters: Facebook is under pressure to offer users more control and provide the public with better accountability. The company has responded with a mix of apologies, policy changes and remedial steps.
Mess one — privacy and personal data: In response to persistent controversies over Facebook's handling of personal data, CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced in May 2018 the company would provide what he called a "clear history" tool, "a simple control to clear your browsing history on Facebook — what you've clicked on, websites you've visited, and so on."
Mess two — election-related misinformation: Facebook promised to release data to academics back in April 2018 as part of a foundation-backed project "to help provide independent, credible research about the role of social media in elections, as well as democracy more generally."
Mess three — conflicts over content: Facebook has a huge content moderation problem as it tries to manage the vast range of human communication it hosts and deal appropriately with political dissent, hate speech, satire, harassment and more.
Meanwhile: Facebook is plunging full speed ahead into new product areas that could generate tons more highly sensitive data — like Libra, its effort to create a new cryptocurrency, and Portal, its video-conferencing device that puts cameras and microphones into users' homes.
Editor's note: This story has been updated to clarify that Facebook is slowly rolling out its "clear history" tools out to a small percentage of users around the globe now (rather than continuing to introduce it country by country).
Aaron Levie. Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
Even as politicians in D.C. struggle to come up with national privacy legislation, Box CEO Aaron Levie says there is a growing consensus on what should be expected of companies.
Why it matters: As large companies adopt policies to comply with EU and California laws, federal legislation becomes more a formality and less of a battleground.
"We're stumbling our way there," Levie told Axios on Thursday in an interview at the company's San Francisco office.
Specifically, he said, there is growing convergence around several key points.
"It's a very blurry image but you can start to see the contours of what a global privacy set of laws might look like," he said. "We're probably 5 years out from this being anything that gets standardized. But I think it is not unrealistic that things could start to converge more on this stuff."
Meanwhile, Levie expects big companies to largely adopt the California rules that go into effect in January, just as most companies adopted the EU's GDPR requirements globally. Google, for example, committed Thursday to doing just that.
"It's just how you will build your systems," he said.
The bottom line: Increased regulation is good for Box's business. "The more complex the world gets from a data privacy standpoint," Levie said, "the more companies want partners that can abstract that."
Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios
Congress on Thursday approved legislation to deter the flood of robocalls hitting consumers' phones, sending the bill to the president's desk, Axios' Margaret Harding McGill reports.
Driving the news: The Pallone-Thune TRACED Act unanimously cleared the Senate after the House approved it earlier this month.
What they're saying: "I look forward to the president's signature on this TRACED Act in the near future, and hope, as this bill gets implemented, that it will once again be safe to answer your phone in this country," Republican Sen. John Thune said in remarks on the Senate floor.
Go deeper: Robocallers face fight on many fronts
A federal jury on Thursday found Cox Communications liable for failing to keep its subscribers from pirating more than 10,000 pieces of music and awarded $1 billion in damages to plaintiffs Sony Music, Universal Music Group, Warner Music Group and EMI, according to Billboard.
Why it matters: In general, it has been individuals, not internet service providers, that have been held liable for piracy. However, similar lawsuits "have been filed against Charter, Charter subsidiary Bright House Networks, RCN, and Grande Communications," The Verge writes.
Details: The court found Cox guilty of infringement claims on 10,017 pieces of work and fined the company $99,830.29 per musical work.
What's next: Cox intends to appeal the case, per a statement the company put out, The Verge notes.