Hi again from L.A., where I am enjoying lots of fun in the sun ... as I commute to and from the convention center for Adobe Max.
Today's Login is 1,467 words, a 5-minute read.
Facial recognition at Dulles Airport. Photo: Bill O'Leary/The Washington Post/Getty
While tech companies have historically opposed government regulation of their industry, increasingly they are looking to legislation to set some basic ground rules.
The latest: IBM, one of several big tech companies selling facial recognition programs, plans to call on Congress to regulate the technology — but not too much, as Axios' Kaveh Waddell reports.
Why it matters: China has built a repressive surveillance apparatus with facial recognition; now, some U.S. cities are rolling it out for law enforcement. But tech companies worry that opponents will react to these developments by completely putting the kibosh on the technology.
What's happening: In a white paper shared first with Axios, IBM is calling for what it calls "precision regulation." That means limiting potentially harmful uses rather than forbidding use of the technology entirely.
At issue is public trust in facial recognition. Companies hope that curtailing some uses will rescue the technology from sliding into pariah status.
Details: IBM calls for three policies it says are ready to be implemented immediately.
What they're saying:
Photo: "Axios on HBO"
While it has struggled in the past to convert its success online into a presence in physical retail stores, PayPal is planning another go at it.
During an "Axios on HBO" interview, CEO Dan Schulman said that the company will make new efforts starting next year under both the PayPal and Venmo brands.
Why it matters: The offline and online payments worlds are increasingly converging; Apple, for example, has introduced the Apple Card to go along with Apple Pay.
Details: PayPal thinks it can succeed now even though it has struggled in the past.
You can view this part of the interview here.
Earlier: PayPal's CEO doesn't think entering China will force his company to compromise its values.
Photo: Carsten Rehder/picture alliance via Getty Images
The Heritage Foundation is preparing to unveil a video Tuesday that slams YouTube for what it says is the censorship of its voice on YouTube's platform, sources tell Axios' Sara Fischer.
Why it matters: The video will be the first public acknowledgment of a months-long, behind-the-scenes dispute between the conservative think tank and the tech giant.
Details: In late September, YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki met with Heritage Foundation president Kay Coles James and other members of Heritage's leadership team at their offices in Washington, sources tell Axios.
YouTube removed the video, which features a doctor making a comment about transgender issues, as a violation of its hate speech policies. Sources say that the tech giant offered to re-list the video, but only if the Daily Signal removed the transgender reference by the doctor. Heritage sees that either-or choice as censorship.
Between the lines: Heritage went through a similar standoff with Facebook, but eventually had its video reposted as a part of an appeals process.
The big picture: The standoff highlights a wider issue that conservatives face in squaring off against Big Tech. Some conservatives feel conflicted about crying foul over YouTube's decisions because of their belief that private companies should be free to set their own policies.
Go deeper: Inside YouTube's hate speech minefield
Last year, 93% of people living in a country with an election faced internet-driven election interference from their own government or domestic partisans, according to the 2019 "Freedom on the Net" report.
Why it matters: With all the focus on foreign governments tampering with U.S. elections, it's jarring to note that the U.S. was one of the nations where domestic actors led election interference in 2018, as Axios' Joe Uchill reports.
Freedom on the Net is a longstanding annual global ranking of nations by relative levels of government interference in the internet.
Between the lines: Freedom House specifically identifies disinformation circulating during Brett Kavanaugh's Supreme Court confirmation hearing as evidence the U.S. struggles with information operations.
The rankings put U.S. in seventh place out of the 65 countries in the report. (Iceland won.)
Check out this cat, who stole the show during last night's Giants-Cowboys game.