Apr 11, 2018

Axios PM

By Mike Allen
Mike Allen

Situational awareness: House Speaker Paul Ryan won't run for re-election, as scooped this morning by Axios' Jonathan Swan. Ryan told reporters this afternoon that he's done seeking elected office. Other top Republicans who've gone for the exits.

1 big thing: Zuck in the House

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg faced the House Energy and Commerce Committee today, encountering questions that were significantly more aggressive and partisan than yesterday’s trip before the Senate.

What we learned, via Axios' David McCabe:

  • Zuckerberg said he was among the 87 million people whose data was illicitly gathered by Cambridge Analytica.
  • Zuckerberg avoided committing to several potential changes that lawmakers asked him about, including tweaking privacy settings, its business model and whether he'd commit to adding an African American member to its leadership team.
  • Zuckerberg admitted that the company “sometimes” learns of major data abuses from press reports instead of its own accountability measures. That includes the Cambridge Analytica data breach.
  • Rep. Bobby Rush (D) asked Zuckerberg what the difference was between the methods of Facebook and J. Edgar Hoover. Zuckerberg rejected the comparison: “I know of no surveillance organization that gives people the option to delete the data that they have or even know what they’re collecting.”

Be smart: "There’s a very long road between this privacy panic and concrete action from policymakers," McCabe emails.

Go deeper:

  • Lawmakers in both bodies of Congress were asking Facebook for favors for their constituents. The list.
  • Republicans are pushing Facebook hard on alleged censorship directed at conservatives. Highlights.
  • Average Facebook users have a hard time understanding how the company uses its data, according to a new Omnibus study commissioned by Digital Content Next. By the numbers.
2. What you missed

U.S., Italian and Polish paratroopers descend after jumping from an Air Force C-130 Hercules aircraft at Juliet drop zone in Pordenone, Italy. Photo: Paolo Bovo/Army

  1. President Trump taunted Russia on Twitter this morning, telling them to "get ready" for potential U.S. strikes on Syria. Read up.
  2. Russian President Putin warned Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu against further Israeli military strikes in Syria. Details.
  3. Wireless carriers Sprint and T-Mobile are in merger negotiations again. Why it matters.
  4. Pope Francis has apologized for his handling of a sex abuse scandal in Chile and said he “made serious mistakes." He said he has invited representatives of the victims and Chilean bishops to the Vatican to seek their forgiveness. Backstory.
  5. Chinese Big Tech appears to be in the vanguard of the melding of e-commerce and physical stores. Go deeper.
1 fun thing

"Most dorm residents at Southeast Missouri State University will show up this fall with bedding, a laptop, a backpack and other typical accessories," the Washington Post's Karin Brulliard reports.

  • "A few dozen others will tote something furrier — and breathing: their pets."
  • "The school in Cape Girardeau, Mo., announced last week it is creating pet-friendly floors in one residence hall, where students will be allowed to bunk with roommates of the feline, petite canine or 'small caged animal' variety."
  • "Southeast joins a small but growing group of colleges that offer housing to students and their critters."

Dig in.

Mike Allen